Turmeric Aioli

Turmeric Aioli 2016I have become a little addicted to turmeric these days. I love the earthiness of it and have enjoyed it in yellow curry powder for years. A while back, I found it at my local supermarket fresh, not dried. I couldn’t believe it. It looks a lot like ginger root, but when you peel it or cut it open, it is a vibrant orange color. The first time I saw it, I hadn’t even imagined you could get it in its original state. I thought it was only available as a dried powder. I didn’t really know what I was going to do with it, I just knew I needed to have it.

Turmeric has a ton of health properties. It is being increasingly reported on for all of the potential that it has. Some of the benefits of turmeric include its antioxidant, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, anticarcinogenic, antimutagenic and anti-inflammatory properties. Some reports say it can prevent prostate cancer, increase insulin sensitivity, treat arthritis, reduce cholesterol, prevent Alzheimer’s, and several more things as well. Even if it has half of the health benefits that it seems to, it’s worth adding to your day. Especially when you love it.

It makes things a gorgeous color too. Be warned, however, because it can stain counters or sinks if you leave it on there. I haven’t really had a problem with it, but I do notice it. Some people find the taste a little overpowering, though, so go easy the first time and see what you think. This recipe made my heart happy so I think you should try it and see what you think yourself! I ate it with raw broccoli and then this broccoli-tomato salad and then off the spoon. Then I had it on my eggs in the morning. So good!

Turmeric Aioli

1/4 c. mayonnaise

1 Tbsp. lemon juice

1 garlic clove, minced

About 2 Tbsp. grated fresh turmeric, from about a 2 inch knob

1/8 tsp. salt

pinch of fresh ground pepper

Directions

  1. Combine everything in a small bowl and allow to sit for a few minutes so the flavors can blend.
  2. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  3. Dip everything into it.

Go-To Guacamole

Go-To Guacamole 2014To me, guacamole is one of those foods that doesn’t really need a recipe. In fact, I think that perhaps writing down what you put in your guacamole might even be like putting this fantastic condiment in some sort of food jail. I believe it’s meant to be an expression of the cook, a playful conversation between the different ingredients that you choose to put in, something that can be changed on a whim. It really depends on the flavors of the individual ingredients too. Is your avocado more or less ripe? Is your onion sweeter or spicier? How strong is your garlic? Plus I think it might also be that avocadoes are so incredibly delicious, you have to try really hard to mess it up. At least in my opinion. So go for it! You might even surprise yourself.

That being said, a few years ago I was at a friend’s house and she had become somewhat of a guacamole aficionado. She shared a recipe, or rather more of a technique, that had come from her brother-in-law and ever since that day, this has been my go-to guac. I might do something different when the mood strikes – a little more lime, some cumin or coriander, orange or lemon as the citrus component, extra garlic or other combinations that stray even farther from the base – but when I just want a straight-up, no-nonsense guacamole, this one never fails. Thanks, Lauren and Raf!

Go-To Guacamole

1 large avocado or 2 small avocadoes

3/4 Tbsp. lime juice

1 clove of garlic, minced

2 Tbsp. minced sweet onion

1 Tbsp. minced jalapeno

1 Tbsp. minced cilantro

6-8 little cherry tomatoes, diced

1/4 tsp. salt + more to taste

Directions

1) Start by cutting the avocado in half lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop each half out in one piece and place pit-side down on a cutting board. Cut each half in half again, as if you were cutting at the equator. Then slice lengthwise into very thin slices, 1/4 in. or less. Finally cut the slices horizontally. The goal is to have very small little chunks that hold their shape while also getting a little creamy when mixed with the other ingredients. Put the avocado dice in a medium bowl.

2) Add the rest of the ingredients and mix very gently. Taste to adjust seasonings, adding more lime juice or salt, a little more jalapeno, whatever makes it taste right to YOU.

3) Dollop on everything, use as a dip for veggies, eat next to eggs at breakfast, lick the spoon!

 

 

Ranch Dressing

Paleo Ranch DressingWhat’s creamy and flavorful and makes everything taste better? Ranch dressing of course! Unfortunately, that stuff that comes in the bottle at the grocery store has far too many strange ingredients for me. And salad dressings are so easy to make at home that it really is worth giving it a try.

Since discovering how simple it is to make my own Paleo mayonnaise, I happily turn that mayo into creamy dressings any night of the week. This ranch dressing has a nice hit of dill because I like it, but you should feel free to adjust the herbs to your own taste buds. I usually make enough dressing for one or two days worth of salad. It’s quick to make and then I don’t get tired of the same dressing either. If you’re looking for something to dip your veggies into, look no further! Unless, of course, you’re in the mood for Paleo Hummus

Ranch Dressing

1/3 c. Paleo mayonnaise

1 tsp. lemon juice

1 1/2 tsp. red wine vinegar

1/8 tsp. garlic powder

1/4 tsp. onion powder

1/8 tsp. dried thyme

1/4 tsp. dried dill

1/2 tsp. dried chives

1/8 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. pepper

Directions

1) Put mayonnaise in a small bowl and add the lemon juice, vinegar, garlic powder, and onion powder.

2) Measure out the thyme, dill, and chives and add them while rubbing them together in your hands to break them up a little and release their aroma.

3) Stir to combine, add salt and pepper, and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning to your taste. Eat with crunchy salads, veggie slices, or even drizzled on eggs.

 

Paleo Cauliflower Hummus

Paleo Cauliflower Hummus

I don’t know how to tell you this, but I think I can live without chickpeas. I used to love hummus and was pretty disappointed when I learned that chickpeas were out with paleo due to the fact that they’re quite difficult to digest and meat is simply a more dense protein source. I quickly realized that I was going to need to find a replacement because I really enjoy Mediterranean flavors and having a little something to dip my veggies in when I’m feeling snacky is a real treat. So here we are with what is quickly becoming my favorite vegetable – cauliflower! It’s not my favorite raw and it’s not my favorite roasted, but rice it or puree it and flavor it any way you want, and suddenly all things are possible!

Paleo Cauliflower Hummus

1/2 a head of cauliflower, roughly chopped

2 cloves or garlic, chopped

2 Tbsp. tahini

2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

2 Tbsp. lemon juice

1-2 Tbsp. water

1/2 tsp. salt or more to taste

olive oil drizzle (optional)

paprika sprinkle (optional)

Directions

1) Steam the cauliflower. I used a Ziploc steamer bag and microwaved it for 4 minutes. You want it soft but not water-logged. Put in a food processor.

2) Add the remaining ingredients (except the drizzle of olive oil and paprika), beginning with 1 Tbsp. of water, and puree until you have a smooth consistency. You may need to scrape down the sides and add the 2nd Tbsp. of water or more until you get it creamy smooth to your liking.

3) Allow to rest for about 10 minutes until the flavors have melded. Drizzle with extra olive oil, sprinkle with paprika, and eat with abandon.

Serves 4

*Note: This would be delicious with some cumin added as well!

Avocado-Citrus Cream

Guacamole is awesome. I pretty much like it in all its different permutations, but I do have a go-to recipe that a friend taught me a while back and I love it. Sometimes, though, I want something a little different. I was looking for a smooth and creamy topper with a citrusy punch for my Mexican Pork and Pepper Stew and made this delicious concoction. It mellows the spices and gives it a creamy smooth finish that pops. If you want some heat, a jalapeno would be perfect in it.

What can you do with the leftovers? Put it on eggs – scrambled or hard boiled would be great, use it for a veggie dip – cucumber is particularly delicious, or just eat it right off the spoon.

Avocado-Citrus Cream 2013

Avocado-Citrus Cream

1 avocado

1/2 c. cilantro

Juice from 1 lime

Juice from 1/4 an orange

1 clove of garlic

1 tsp. ground coriander

1/2 t. salt

2 T. water

Directions

1) Place everything in a blender and blend until very smooth and silky. I used a Magic Bullet, but you could even mash it with a fork. A little chunkier but still tasty!