Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Ham Hock and Cabbage Soup

With the weather cooling down, it's nice to warm your innards with some delicious fall soup.

6-8 small servings or 3-4 large servings

* 4 tablespoons bacon grease
* 1 nitrate-free ham hock (about 1 pound)
* 1/2 a large onion, chopped
* 3 celery stalks, chopped
* 1/2 a small-to-medium head of green cabbage, chopped
* 3 cloves garlic, minced
* 2 bay leaves
* 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
* 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
* 3-4 cups Chicken Broth
* 3-4 cups peeled and cubed pumpkin (or other winter squash)

Heat the bacon grease over medium-high heat. Add the celery and onions and cook til they start to wilt. Add the ham hock.

Add the cabbage, garlic, bay leaves, black pepper, salt, and cayenne. Stir and cook until cabbage is slightly wilted, 3-4 minutes.

Pour the broth in, bring to a boil, and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.

Add the pumpkin, cover, and simmer 1 hour.

Remove the ham hock from the pot and remove the meat from the bone. Shred the meat and stir it back into the soup. Remove and discard the bay leaves.


This makes great leftovers and I think the taste even improves with age.

Goes well with a side salad for dinner.


I adapted this recipe from Emeril Lagasse's Ham Hock and Cabbage Soup:

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Mostly Paleo Muffins

I say these are only mostly paleo because they do use baking powder/soda and flavoring extracts, which I doubt our cavemen buddies had access to. They are very tasty however, and and make a nice breakfast alternative to eggs or leftovers. I don't make them all the time, because let's face it, a muffin is a muffin! So eat these with care. I was procrastinating on writing this post because I have not felt the urge to eat pans of muffins myself, but I decided to just go ahead and write it anyway and try to find some old pictures to show you.

Note: I use maple syrup or raw honey as my sweeteners of choice. I do not use agave nectar because it can be up to 90% fructose; fructose is processed in the liver instead of the bloodstream and has many deleterious effects.

recipe makes 6 muffins

1 1/2 cups almond flour
3/4 cup pureed pumpkin (you can used canned, but make sure to get just plain pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
3 eggs
1/4-1/3 cup maple syrup or honey depending on your sweet tooth
1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped cranberries

Preheat oven to 350.

Mix together all the ingredients except for the cranberries until smooth. Fold in the cranberries.

Spoon batter into 6 greased muffin cups (I use coconut oil) and bake for 20-25 minutes.

These are very soft and cakey muffins. I think that cutting them in half and toasting them is very nice since it gives it little crisp edges.

Banana nut muffins - use pureed bananas in place of the pumpkin, chopped walnuts in place of cranberries, and omit the pie spice.
Flax muffins - replace up to 1/2 cup of the almond flour with ground flax seeds

Recipe adapted from Eating Stella Style by George Stella.


recipe makes 6 muffins

1 1/2 cups almond flour
1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
1/4-1/3 cup maple syrup or honey depending on your sweet tooth
1 1/2 tsp coconut extract
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
2 T coconut oil

Preheat oven to 350.

Mix together all ingredients until smooth.

Pour into 6 muffin cups greased with coconut oil and bake for 15-20 minutes.

Recipe adapted from Eating Stella Style by George Stella.


recipe makes 12 muffins

I don't have a picture for these. This is an experimental recipe. The original recipe is from a low-carb book and uses butter and Splenda. I am 99% certain that you can subsitute paleo ingredients and end up with a tasty product, but I have only tried the original version and haven't made the paleo version yet. If anyone wants to try making these, let us know how they turn out!

2 cups almond flour
stevia to equal the sweetness of 1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
scant 1/2 tsp salt
1 cup coconut oil (original recipe is 1 cup butter)
1/3 cup maple syrup or honey (original recipe is 2/3 cup Splenda)
2 T lemon zest, or about 2 medium lemons' worth
1 tsp lemon juice
5 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350.

Whisk together almond flour, stevia, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Meanwhile, melt the coconut oil.

In a food processor, process maple syrup or honey with the lemon zest until combined. Add lemon juice, eggs, and vanilla. Process until combined.

With the food processor running, add the melted coconut oil in a steady stream. This should take at least 20 seconds.

Transfer mixture to a large bowl and gradually stir almond flour mixture into the wet mixture.

Grease 12 muffin cups with coconut oil and distribute batter equally among the cups.

Bake 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 and continue baking til done, keeping an eye on it, about 20-25 minutes. The time can vary a lot so be sure to keep an eye on it and don't let it burn.

Recipe adapted from 500 More Low-Carb Recipes by Dana Carpender.


Happy eating!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Plans for November at Caveman Food

I just wanted to say hi to anybody that made it over here from Cindy's blog! Thanks for the shout-out, Cindy. :) I have some plans for this month to post about yummy paleo food that you can make for the holidays that is good enough that everyone will eat. I'll also try to post about those muffins everyone seems to want to know about. The problem with the muffins is that if I want to take pictures of them for you guys I have to make them! And then I have to eat them! Such a hard life.

Anyway, stay tuned!

Butternut Souffle

Sorry I've been a little MIA! My husband and I went on a mini vacation to the mountains in Asheville, NC to get away from work for a little while and enjoy fall in the mountains. Asheville was a real treat, too. They are very big into local organic food there and almost every restaurant we went to proudly touted the menu items made from local ingredients. My kind of city!

Anyway I'm back in the kitchen now. I gotta say it was nice not having to cook and do dishes for a week. :) Here is something I made today from leftovers that turned out exceedingly well.

serves 2-3 as a side dish

approx 1 cup of butternut squash puree (canned is fine)
2 eggs
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp paprika
2 T coconut milk
handful of chopped pecans

Beat together all the ingredients except for the pecans. Spread into a small greased baking dish or ramekin. Sprinkle the nuts on top. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes.

This would work great as a side dish for dinner, but I was a little piggy and ate the whole thing for lunch today.