Month: July 2014

Crunchy Red Cabbage Salad

Paleo * Gluten free * Vegetarian * Vegan * Parve

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I love red cabbage salad.  Growing up my mom made what we called Ketchup Salad every time the ketchup bottle was getting low.  She would add vegetable oil and red wine vinegar to the remaining ketchup (Heinz, of course) in the bottle and shake – great way to use every drop of ketchup – then pour it over shredded red cabbage and shredded carrots – add plenty of salt and pepper and a family favorite was created.  Jump forward 40 or 50 years – I’m working in the soup kitchen and we get a case of red cabbage donated.  I know just what to do with it – Ketchup Salad!  My fellow volunteers were horrified but I stood firm and insisted we add ketchup to the vinaigrette.  Guess what – they all loved it too (except Lenny who wouldn’t taste it) and every now and then one of them announces s/he had made Ketchup Salad at home that week.  So though I don’t have exact proportions of oil/vinegar/ketchup to give you, I encourage you to make up your own Ketchup Salad, if you dare!

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Mango Coconut Chia Seed Pudding

Paleo * Gluten free * Vegetarian * Vegan * Parve

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I went to lunch with my friend Paula one day and we ate at Pan Quotidien, one of my least favorite restaurants, because it was conveniently located and had many gluten-free items on the menu.  I don’t remember what either Paula or I had, but I do distinctly remember the dessert because it was both gluten-free for Paula and dairy-free for me (that was before I gave up wheat).  We shared a Chia Seed Pudding with Passion Fruit Puree on top.  It was sort of a crunchy tapioca pudding and we were both surprised at how good it was.

Although chia seed is the darling of all health advocates, I still can’t help but think of it as hair to grow on silly clay pots.  So I was thrilled to find that it makes an easy, no-cook dessert that is good for you.  I have recently been eating this for breakfast with fruit topping for a tasty way to start the day.  There are tons of ways to vary this recipe.  Start with toppings – any fruit combo is good, or you can make a puree or if you want something thicker, just add cornstarch to fruit juice or puree and bring to a boil, then cool.  You can also vary the liquids in the pudding:  use nut milk instead of coconut, use any fruit juice or nectar or no juice and make it completely coconut.  Use any sweetener you like – or none at all. Play around with the recipe, you are sure to like the results.
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Really Quick and Easy Paleo Meatballs

paleo * Dairy free * Gluten free

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There is a restaurant  just a block and a half from my apartment called The Meat Ball Shop.

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I love the idea of it but I can’t imagine they make their meatballs without either breadcrumbs or cheese (of course, they should given how many people are gluten or dairy free).  And so, every day as I walk my dog past the store, I have been thinking longingly of meatballs.   I MUST have meatballs!

I first developed this recipe – actually, that is way too formal a concept for what really happened…My friends were coming to visit early one Sunday afternoon.  I practically always serve breakfast/brunch and was totally prepared and excited to serve them my Oatmeal Pancakes; but Max, their son, told me he had had pancakes for breakfast that morning.  Quickly I had to think what could I make Max?  Ah, I had some chopped meat in the fridge and I always have a jar of marinara sauce in the pantry – MEATBALLS.  I chopped some onions, threw in some oats, salt, and pepper and formed the meatballs.  I put them in a pot with spaghetti sauce et voila – meatballs.  They were remarkably good – not too dense with good flavor.  That was then, now, I’m “cleaning up” my site and look at this recipe and think…these can easily be paleoized.  So here is my recipe for Max’s Really Quick and Easy Gluten-free Dairy-free and Now Paleo Meatballs – enjoy!
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Best Ever Gluten-free Dairy-free Crackers (not Paleo)

Wheat free * Dairy free * Gluten free * Vegetarian * Vegan * Parve

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Do you love Wheat Thins®? Do you miss Wheat Thins®?   As a well known cracker-aholic, switching to gluten-free crackers was probably even harder for me than giving up bread (because with the exception of my gluten-free cornbread, I have yet to find a bread I like).  I buy every gluten-free cracker that comes out and none of them have the right consistency for me.  Some are certainly fine, but delicious like Wheat Thins®? Not.  These crackers are remarkably easy to make and are exactly what I was hoping for when I started working on the recipe.

As written, the recipe makes savory, crispy crackers with just a hint of sweetness and no starchiness at all.  You can easily alter the recipe to your tastes:  low sodium?  leave out the salt.  Don’t have zatar aka za’atar?  Use poultry seasoning or any herbs you like – or none at all for a plain cracker.  Want a neutral tasting cracker?  leave out the garlic powder and herbs.  Don’t like seeds?  omit the egg and toppings.  I could go on forever with the possibilities.  You can also vary the shapes, once you’ve rolled out the dough, you can cut them into assorted shapes using cookie cutters or you can make them into larger crackers by just cutting them into rectangles or you can cut the rectangles into squares or diamonds.  I’ve also thought about, but have yet to try, rolling the dough into 1 1/2-inch balls and flattening them in a tortilla press, then cutting the resulting circle into wedges.  If you try that, let me know how it works : )
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