I’m overjoyed that Canada has a new leader. We’ve been through a hellish 12 years of environmental destruction and infringement on our human rights. Yet still so many people supported Harper, it’s astonishing to me how even at this pivotal point in time, when the planet is crying for us to stop annihilating it, people can still care more about money than breathing clean air. Hopefully the Liberals will hold true to their promises, the first day in office Trudeau pulled Canadian fighter jets out of Iran. He’s moving ahead and accepting more refugees into our gigantic and abundant country and helping to disable the fear propaganda we’ve been hearing for so long. A very noble first step towards regaining our countries peace keeping reputation.
I told some friends that if the conservatives were to win I was moving to Ecuador. Luckily for now I’ll be staying in the homeland, enjoying delicious cinnamon apple streusel muffins and aged earl grey tea on calm cool mornings with change in the air. Here’s hoping we can start to move forward after a long time going back. Amazingly Canada already employs more people in the sustainable energy industry than in oil. We have long needed a government that echoes the sentiments of the majority which I think are kindness, generosity and humility.
Oh yes, and about these muffins…they literally disappeared in a matter of 3 hours. They were gobbled right up and the scent from the cinnamon makes your kitchen smell amazing. Since they’re sugar free they are perfect for sensitive little ones. My son just adores them so much. I’ve made a few variations of this recipe now and it works great for banana muffins, chocolate and savoury. After many different paleo muffin renditions this is by far my favourite formula. The baking powder technically isn’t paleo and you can omit it. Personally I don’t think a bit of BP does much harm and it makes the muffins nice and plump!
Whoa that was a mouthful. I could’ve made it longer, I could’ve said, crispy cast iron seared scallops lovingly draped in a coat of salty prosciutto, smothered with my bright green take on salsa verde, roasted tomatillos, garlic, and a big old fresh avocado to sweeten the deal, all alongside a tender little pile of mizuna greens cooked in a bit of bacon fat for a total of about 30 seconds. Phewf. Okay, should I write menus or is a bit too convoluted? Long story short, if you have ever felt to intimidated to make scallops, stop right now. You know how many amazing scallops you can eat at home for the same price as three on your plate in a fancy restaurant? Learning to make amazing perfect Prosciutto Wrapped Scallops will be a skill that sticks to your side like those little tender tid bits clinging to their shells.
So this isn’t the first time I’ve waxed poetic about scallops…
I can’t believe it’s October. Today the little man and I had a date and frolicked in the leaves, enjoying the sunshine after a full on yoga sesh. It was gorgeous to look at him in such a state of pure joy as I threw little dried piles of leaves on him. Like how much happier can you get? Even in the midst of chaos and hardship that smile makes everything okay. Oh and he adooooores scallops!
Prosciutto Wrapped Scallops with Avocado Salsa Verde and Wilted Mizuna
For the salsa verde
1 lb tomatillos
3 garlic cloves
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 tbs lime juice
1 jalapeno (seeds removed for less spice)
1 ripe avocado
sea salt and pepper to taste
For the scallops
1 Tbs olive oil
sea salt and pepper
1 lb sea scallops
8-12 slices prosciutto
For the mizuna
1 bundle mizuna greens
1 tsp bacon fat
For the salsa verde
Heat oven to 400F.
Slice the tomatillos in half and place on a parchment lined baking sheet with the garlic and onion. Drizzle with a bit of olive oil and salt and pepper. Roast for about 20 minutes until the tomatillos are soft.
Add all ingredients to a blender or food processor and pulse until well combined.
For the scallops
Rinse and dry the scallops very well (key) add salt and pepper liberally on both sides.
Use a cast iron pan for optimal results. Heat pan with olive oil until sizzling. Drop the scallops one by one but be sure not to overcrowd them, leave about an inch of space between each one. Do them in batches if need be. Do not touch them once you put them in the pan. Wait about 2 minutes cooking on medium-high heat before flipping, cook for another minute or two on the other side, turning the heat up a bit as the pan will have slightly cooled.
Transfer to a plate and wrap with a slice of prosciutto.
For the mizuna
Add the bacon fat and mizuna to the same pan you cooked the scallops in. Cover for 30 seconds et voila.
Wow, it’s already on to week 3 of the whole30! Last time I only made it to about this point before giving up. It was a difficult time to try and do a whole30 because I had just had my little guy and he was only about 3 months old. Sleep deprivation doesn’t help with food craving to say the least. Now I feel a lot stronger and its not so hard. Here’s to a fabulous third week of delicious nourishing food
Holy case of the Mondays today. On top of the ‘kill all things’ stage of the whole 30, my little teething monster has been draining 60 calories of comfort a minute from me. I don’t understand how women with children under 3 get absolutely anything done. Murphy’s law is in full swing because as soon as I wrote that he is off on his own smashing remote controls. Do I care? Nope.
How do you cope with ineffective days? I feel like our society superimposes really high standards of productivity. But some days it feels pretty difficult to cross anything off the to-do list. I have to gently remind myself that raising a child is always on the top of that list, and that I must always work on that first.
About this salad, it’s beyond refreshing and packed with craving busting minerals. Often we get those mad cravings for sweets and quick fix foods because of mineral deficiencies. But you know what sucks? Boring salads. Boring vegetables. They give vegetables a bad rep. It’s my mission to never ever make a boring salad. Cruciferous vegetables are particularly detoxifying because they’re so high in I3C or indole-3-carbinols, which help to break down bad estrogen in the body and regulate hormones. Aside from that the fiber and vitamin C in this salad are cleansing and help me feel more vibrant and just plain happy during the first few days of the whole 30. I find that I always have a craving for crunchy foods and this Fennel Grapefruit Detox Salad more than satisfies. Save some of the fronds for garnish or adding to soups and what not, they really impart that lovely anise flavour.
These little raw tarts and adorned with the last local fruits of the season, oh how it pains me to type that. The sheer beauty of the grapes, blackberries and plums demanded something precious and extravagant to adorn. What better than a little chocolate tartlet with an intensely amazing creamy centre, no added sugar, not necessary, just an emphasis on the natural tastes present in every bite of bursting fruit. The base is brazil nuts and dates with raw cacao and the luscious filling is the smoothest creamiest vanilla cashew cream sweetened with a touch of wild honey. Absolute perfection I tell you my friends, just do yourselves a favour and make these for the people you love the most. They are little bites of heaven and I thought 12 would be enough to last a few days but I’m sorry to say they are too good and J has already devoured, errm, 5 in the last 12 hours, sigh. It’s okay though, because good things are meant to be enjoyed.
don’t mind my exceptionally old muffin tin…
It was the last farmers market on Wednesday and I went absolutely bonkers and bought ten of everything. I can’t say I hold any restraint or fiscal responsibility when I step foot on market grounds. The colours draw me in and my mind goes a mile a minute thinking of all the beautiful creations I could make and of all the hard work and love these organic farmers put into their food. I must do it all justice, it’s only proper. If I burn the garlic, I burn them, and I just couldn’t do that to these hard working passionate people. The tomatoes are at that point where they ooze unspoken songs begging to be used. The apples have finally arrived in all their glory. Grapes provoke stories of old, that dusty ephemeral morning harvest way back when, frozen fingers and the promise of wine. My mind wanders, I can’t help but swell with gratitude for all this bounty, memories flush of fall times past and how that same feeling always hits me almost all at once. Then I come home and lovingly unpack it all and actually take a picture of the contents of the fridge because it isn’t too often that it is so overflowing with possibilities. Dreams of my own someday garden start to dissipate and I am just content that other people do it, I wish I could cook them all dinner.
The first order of business this morning was to adorn everything with shiny bubbly blackberries. These Cookies and Cream Tarts do more than justice to blackberry beauty. Tomorrow we will bring some of these divine little tarts on a wild mushroom hunt in the proverbial woodland. Please people send me good juju so that I will find the treasure- yes the matsutake or pine mushrooms- they grow here in abundance, if you can find the spots that is. I’ve yet to hit upon a huge score but I know the next big patch could be just around the corner!
1 C brazil nuts (you could also use walnuts or almonds)
¾ date paste, softened in some warm water for a few minutes, or about 8 dates softened in warm water
½ tsp sea salt
2 Tbs+2Tbs melted coconut oil
2 Tbs raw cacao
1 C cashews, soaked for 6-8 hrs
2 tsp pure vanilla extract or ½ a vanilla bean pod,seeds scraped out
1 tsp lemon juice
1 Tbs wild honey
¼-1/2 C water
pinch sea salt
various local seasonal fruit- berries, grapes, pears,plums...
In a food processor or blender add the brazil nuts, followed by the soaked dates,salt,2 Tbs coconut oil and cacao. Pulse until the nuts are totally broken down and it looks like brownie batter, nice and smooth.
Fill a muffin tin with this mixture about 1 Tbs per section. You can use paper muffin cups for easier removal. Press the mixture up the sides to form little cups. Put it in the freezer to set while you make the cream.
In a food processor or blender add strained cashews, vanilla, lemon,2 Tbs coconut oil, honey, salt and ¼ C of water. Blend on high until super super smooth, adding a touch more water until desired consistency is reached. You want it to mix easily and be light and creamy.
Remove muffin tin from freezer, if you didn't line the tin you may want to remove the formed cups before adding the filling. Just let the tarts sit out and unfreeze a bit before using a fork to scoop them out onto a plate.
Fill the tarts with a Tbs of cashew cream, top with preferred fruits, or nothing at all.
For a firmer filling, refrigerate for an hour before serving.
Okay so there are a zillion different paleo brownie recipes out there folks, but trust me, this one is the simplest. Simple is good. Simple is chewy in the middle and crispy around the edges. Simple is almond butter, not tapioca, arrowroot and flax made into an egg swirl. Yes this recipe is sure to delight the simplest of happy folks.
I know you have that friend who grows the hugest 10lb zucchinis that win every year at the fall fair. Maybe you are that friend. In any case, this is the time of year where there is more than enough zucchini going around. What elso to do than to make zucchini chocolate cake, the children will never know, muahaha. This cake is so epic, Sonia never ceases to amaze me with her indulgent paleo creations and the photos are to die for! I just want to pick that cuisinart up right now and lick it clean.
This is a great secret of many a health nut out there, avocado and chocolate are stunning together. The creamy richness and healthy fats in the avocado, take the cocoa to the next level, plus you’ve just created a powerhouse of nutrients. Pretty sure that’s what Mike was going for when he created this delightful summer treat. I would eat this in all it’s variations- popsicle, pudding, fudge, you name it.
ps.haha “Just imagine what would happened if ice-cream was served during Congress hearings. No more
contentious public battles; only bargain and compromise. Politicians for sure wouldn’t be able to talk so much with their mouths full of ice-cream. ”
Some people hate chocolate and orange, and some love it. Personally I’m in the latter category and proud of it. If someone gave me a box of these gorgeous little truffles I would either run away and eat them all, or share with all chocorange haters and convert them instantly. Cause these aint no Terry’s Chocolate Orange folks.
These are lovely and filled with an air of celebration. Imagine these were what children brought to school on their birthdays? How awesome would that be. I was driving home today and a few young girls in the community had a cupcake stand, gah, cutest thing ever.
Sweetened Condensed Coconut Milk? Good God, tell me you’ve tried this. Tis the goo of the gods. But really all sorts of grandma style recipes calling for condensed milk can now be converted or “paleoized” as the primal desire would state. This giant cookie bar is magic because it contains all good things, nuts, seeds, coconut and chocolate layered to perfection.
I remember the first time I had nutella (who doesn’t?) it was a revelation in my hazelnut free world, and supposedly healthy! The amount of backpackers I’ve met who always carry a jar of nutella with them is astounding. There’s just something about the combination of chocolate and hazelnut that makes people go bonkers. Nutella has been around since the 60’s, can you tell me which came first, ferraro rocher or nutella? This paleo version is a new and improved junk-free version. Love it.
Quintessential chocolate chip cookie recipe-check! These are so yummy, and super simple, again almond butter showing it’s amazing prowess in making chewy perfect treats. The flaked sea salt is not only beautiful but pries out all those rich flavours for our taste buds to fully experience.
Dang, what a splendid way to enjoy summers blackberries. Without added sugar and totally vegan and paleo, this would be a perfect summer birthday cake. Fudgy oozy gooey goodness doesn’t always come easy when GF and vegan but these guys nailed it, with cute baby eating chocolate photos and an avocado chocolate icing to boot.
Creamy cashew goodness on the inside wrapped in a magic shell of crunchy chocolate lovin’. These bars are super easy to whip up, and amazingly nutritious. Did you know a handful of cashews is the therapeutic equivalent to a dose of prozac. Good reason to enjoy the awesome ice cream bars.
This is the sort of thing I would devour after an epic yoga session or high intensity workout. High protein, enzyme rich, easy to digest and energizing. These babies are loaded with sunflower seed butter and pumpkin seeds which are high in zinc. If you’ve ever been to GNC and seen those ZMA (zinc,magnesium,B6) supplements, these bars equal the whole food equivalent.
Um, holy eff. Fabulous dairy free, vegan, and oh so gorgeous. With the power vested in me I officially rename Michelle the un-Dairy Queen because this is way better than any typical banana split. Plus it’s free of added sugar!
A sweet little spinoff of chocolate covered strawberries, these little red jewels are filled with a luxurious avocado and banana sugar-free chocolate sauce. Easy to make and a great nosh to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Raspberries are everywhere right now, and we need to stuff our faces with them while we can. Since razzies and chocolate are meant to be together, this full power, dreamy recipe for layered chocolate raspberry slices should be one of your go to raspberry recipes.
Hey I'm Chantelle, my alter ego would be a mermaid if I wasn't such a terrible swimmer. I love writing authentically and cooking in my pyjamas. My favourite pastimes include eating avocados, travelling the world and hanging out with a toddler.