By: Kelly and Adam Postal
Owners of: Taste. Smile. Repeat. Personal Chef Service & Nuthin’ but Nuts Inspired Nut Butter Creations
The Paleolithic Diet is the way we were intended to eat as humans. Mother Nature provides all that we need, not just to survive, but to thrive. We used to call this lifestyle “hunting and gathering,” which is an apt description of where our food came from. Fast forward to today, and Paleo or Paleocuisine is the modern adaptation of this active lifestyle in pursuit of Nature’s culinary treasures.
As personal chefs we have worked with many clients who are constantly struggling to find the best diet to get into shape and feel healthy. Like our clients, we too have tried everything from being vegetarians, limiting all carbs, attempting pescetarianism (only consuming fish), and the list goes on. Let’s face it, we are “Flex Fuel” vehicles, and not only are some of these diets very restricting, they are missing specific nutrients or entire fuel sources altogether, like fat. These deficiencies ultimately lead to dissatisfaction and failure when convenience and habit resume their dominance.
This New Food movement is actually a REdiscovering of where our food comes from, and the abundance of nutrition it provides. Nutrients we don’t even have names for yet are in spinach and arugula. And, everything we do to these raw ingredients changes them in some way. It is no wonder that the processed foods in the center of the grocery store have retained little or no nutrition from their raw ingredients. They don’t look, smell, or taste like anything found in Nature. They appeal to our desires for convenience and our addictions to sugar and salt. And, they wreak havoc on our metabolism causing weight gain, brain fog, stress, depression, arthritis, gas/bloating, and even cancer. Why is Paleo the only diet that works? Paleocuisine takes us back to our “hunting and gathering” roots and steers us down a path of health and harmony with Nature.
A recent flood of client requests for the Paleo diet piqued our curiosity. We have been devouring books and information on the Paleolithic diet including The Vitamin D Cure, The Paleo Diet, and even some scientific papers reviewing the importance of protein, green vegetables, and fat in our diets. As we have prepared more paleocuisine for our clients we have transformed our own eating habits. I can honestly say this will be the last “diet” we ever introduce into our own lives. Some may say it is too limiting and takes hours of meal preparation but I would say to them, you couldn’t be more wrong! In fact, it is quite the opposite. What could be simpler than Nature unprocessed? Paleocuisine keeps it simple while allowing for variety and experimentation.
Always stick to the outside perimeter of the grocery store. That way you can hit the produce, meat department and bulk nut section and be on your way. Paleocuisine allows for every kind of fresh meat including organ meat, which feeds our need for variety. Likewise, it has encouraged us to experiment with new vegetables and fruits that we probably wouldn’t have tried otherwise. And for those special occasions when you just HAVE TO HAVE bread or pie or any other “forbidden by the Paleo gods ” type of food, there are a vast array of Paleo recipes that substitute with such things as almond and coconut flour. One of our personal favorites is a Swiss Chard & Tomato Tart. The recipe follows!
Swiss Chard & Tomato Tart
1 cup almond flour
2/3 cup coconut flour
2 Tbsp. Cornstarch
1 tsp. sea salt
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/3 cup cold water
1 large red onion, sliced thin
1 bunch Swiss chard, cleaned and chopped (keep stems and leaves separate)
2 Tbsp. Olive oil
2 Tbsp. fresh herbs (basil, oregano, parsley, etc.), optional
1 lg. tomato, sliced into rounds
4 eggs, whisked
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
For the Crust:
Mix the dry ingredient in a bowl, then add the coconut oil and cold water. It will come together as a sticky dough. Press into the bottom and up the sides of a tart pan (preferably with a removable bottom.) For ease, place onto a baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes.
For the filling:
Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Sauté the onion until soft and caramelized, about 10 minute, adding the Swiss chard stems about half way. Next, add the Swiss chard leaves and allow them to wilt, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and add your herbs and season with salt and pepper.
Evenly spread the onion/Swiss chard mixture over the pre-baked crust. Pour the whisked eggs over the top to evenly distribute. Lastly, evenly top with the tomato slices. Bake for an additional 25-30 minutes or until the middle is set.
Enjoy as breakfast, lunch or even a light dinner!