Eat Evolved

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You are what you eat. Eat what you've evolved to eat.

Archive for June, 2011

Grain-free Game of Thrones: Tully Trout

Sunday, June 19th, 2011

Can’t believe the finale of Game of Thrones is already here. This has been the fastest ten weeks ever. Tonight’s meal was grilled bacon-wrapped trout stuffed with lemon and sage, in honor of what I hope will be the debut of Riverrun tonight.

You’ll want one trout per person. Whole trout, butterflied and deboned as much as possible. Head-on if you can, although it’s certainly not necessary. To prepare it, first open it like a book. Brush the inside down with olive oil, then sprinkle it with salt and pepper. Put in some thin lemon slices and sage leaves–I find that four of each will fit pretty well without too much of a struggle.

stuffed trout

Close it up and wrap it with bacon, then use toothpicks or small wooden skewers to secure the bacon in place. If you use toothpicks, you may want to pierce it through with a metal skewer and then put the toothpick inside the hole, because the fish skin may be too tough for the toothpicks to withstand.

bacon trout

Grill them on medium-high direct heat for five or six minutes per side. Be careful for flare-ups from the bacon grease dripping on the coals!

grilling trout

Once the bacon is done, so is the trout. We served it with a small green salad.

look I'm eating a face!

Paleo Father’s Day Brunch

Sunday, June 19th, 2011

brunch

Clockwise from top: Celery root “hash browns,” crabcake eggs Benedict, and sausage gravy and biscuits.

This was a really fabulous brunch–had it at 10 AM and was really not very hungry even when dinner rolled around.

The hash browns were amazing. I’ve really missed breakfast potatoes since I made the switch to a Primal diet, and these were amazingly good. The celery root shredded right up in the food processor, and they cooked into a wonderful soft texture that I’ve never really managed to pull off with actual potatoes. Cook them a bit longer than the recipe calls for–I gave them an extra five minutes per side and still didn’t get them as crispy as I could have. Otherwise, they’re dead easy–shredded celery root, salt, and pepper, fried in whatever oil you prefer–I used ghee. My mother-in-law couldn’t tell that they weren’t potatoes.

The sausage gravy and biscuits I made from this Robb Wolf recipe. About the only thing I did differently was omit the fennel in the gravy, used tapioca flour instead of arrowroot powder, and beat the egg whites into soft peaks for the biscuits (I shouldn’t have bothered–it took so much stirring to incorporate all the coconut flour that it deflated them completely). I’ll keep searching for a better biscuit recipe. The gravy was really good, though–couldn’t tell that it was dairy-free at all!

I’ve made crab cakes on here before–they’re one of those things that I make a little differently every time. The standard is crabmeat + egg + almond flour + green onions + Old Bay + salt and pepper. Sometimes I use a little bit of diced celery or celery seed. I fried them in olive oil for about 5 minutes per side, and then put them in the oven at 200 degrees on a cookie sheet to keep warm along with the hash browns while I made the rest of the meal. To make the Benedict, I made hollandaise sauce using my stick blender. Put 3 room temperature egg yolks in the beaker, and top with the rest of the ingredients. Put the barely-melted butter in last, let it settle for about 15 seconds, then whiz it with the stick blender until it’s smooth. You can do this in a regular blender or food processor too, but I prefer the stick blender version. You’ll want this to be the last thing you do for the meal, because if it cools off too much it’s really not very good, and it can’t be reheated. To plate it up, top a crab cake with a poached or fried egg, then pour the hollandaise over it.

Recipe Review: Oopsie Rolls

Saturday, June 18th, 2011

The vast majority of great culinary discoveries I’ve made can begin with the sentence “Today, I had a wild hair up my ass.” Oopsie rolls started that way as well. This recipe is all over the Internet, but I remained skeptical. A bread substitute made from eggs and cream cheese? No way.

And then yesterday I was making burgers for dinner, and I had eggs and cream cheese I needed to use up, and oh what the hell, why not?

Separate three eggs–yolks into one bowl, whites in another. To the yolks, add 3 ounces of cream cheese and two pinches of salt. The original recipe also calls for a packet of Splenda, but yuck. If you’re desperate for sweetened hamburger rolls, try adding a bit of honey or coconut sugar to the yolks. Add a pinch of cream of tartar to the whites, which should be room temperature, and beat them with a hand mixer until they form stiff peaks. Use the same hand mixer to beat the egg yolk mixture until it’s smooth, then gently fold it into the egg whites. Put the batter into six circles on a well-greased cookie sheet (I used parchment paper to line it instead and it worked fine) and flatten them out a tad. Bake at 300 degrees for 30 minutes. Let cool slightly before removing them from the pan to finish cooling on a wire rack.

Sounds ridiculous, right? These bad boys held up to a half-pound medium-rare burger. Toddler saw it, said “I want bread!” and ate a whole piece, never knowing that no grain was harmed I. The making of her dinner. Seriously, these are fabulous. I probably won’t make them again for a while, as I’m doing Whole 30 in July, but when I do, I’ll make some extras to see if they freeze and reheat well. If they do, they’re damn near perfect. I already have visions of an heirloom tomato BLT between two of these.

Crab, Avocado, and Mandarin Orange Salad

Monday, June 6th, 2011

There are some nights where I get stuck late at work, and I’m always scrambling to put something on the table for dinner that doesn’t take forever. And when it’s 90 degrees outside, you don’t want to do a frittata and heat up the whole kitchen. Today was one of those days. About halfway through my work day, when I had a moment to think and plan, I realized I had a container of crabmeat in the fridge. Costco had a good deal on wild-caught lump crabmeat a few months ago, and as the containers keep in the fridge for months, I bought two. One remained, and I decided to try to mimic a favorite appetizer of mine from McCormick and Schmick’s, a blue crab, mango, and avocado tower. I didn’t have mango, but I knew I had mandarin oranges, so I did some Googling around for a dressing recipe I could use as a base and went from there.

I started with this salad dressing recipe, only leaving out the poppy seeds. Definitely use oranges packed in water rather than any sort of syrup–you can get those at Whole Foods. I added about a quarter to a third of the finished dressing to a well-drained one-pound container of lump crabmeat, just enough to moisten it well and get a little of the flavor into it. Do this in a bowl, and keep the can the crabmeat came in–you’ll use it later. Coarsely chop two ripe avocados.

Since the dressing only calls for half the oranges in the can, save the other half. Pack half of the crabmeat back into the can as firmly as you can get it. Top the crab with half of the saved oranges, then top that with half the chopped avocado. Invert the can onto a plate–if you’re lucky, it’ll keep its tower form. Pour additional dressing around the tower on the plate. Do this again with the other half of the ingredients to make the second serving.

You can do this with ripe mango instead of oranges if you have them. I can attest from having the McCormick and Schmick version that it’s good that way too.

crab avocado tower

Blueberry-Marinated Grilled Wild Boar

Monday, June 6th, 2011

More Game of Thrones food. This was yesterday’s offering, and while it would have been more appropriate for the previous week, we were only able to obtain the wild boar the day before during an otherwise disastrous road trip through Cincinnati. I was going to make it pan-seared, with a sauce from reconstituted dried mushrooms, but my husband said that King Robert probably wouldn’t have gone for pan-searing the boar, and with that I had to agree. Grilling it was, but I could find absolutely no recipes online that did what I wanted to do with it. As the morning turned to the afternoon, I said “Okay, I’m going to wing it” and managed to pull off something pretty interesting.

First, make the marinade. For two pounds of wild boar medallions, I used about 3/4 of a cup of frozen wild blueberries, a half-cup or so of white wine, a healthy splash (maybe 1/4 cup, if that) of blueberry-flavored mead (you can sub regular mead, apple juice, or a tablespoon or so of honey), a couple of tablespoons of lemon juice, a pinch of salt and a dash of pepper, and about 1/3 of a cup of olive oil. Blend it all together with a stick blender or food processor and pour it over the boar in a gallon-sized Ziploc bag. Squeeze out all the air and let it sit in the fridge for at least four hours, but overnight probably would have been better. I just didn’t have overnight to do it.

Drain the marinade thoroughly, and grill the medallions at 400 degrees for 5 minutes per side. I ended up slicing them up and serving them on a salad with homemade blueberry vinaigrette (1/4 cup blueberries, 1/4 cup olive oil, 3 tablespoons balsamic, salt and pepper, pureed until smooth), but you could probably eat them just fine as steaks as well.
blueberry boar salad

An apology, and more Game of Thrones food

Monday, June 6th, 2011

First off, sorry for not posting in ages. I got an iPad 2 about…oh, a month ago, and while it’s an awesome surfing device, it’s not the best posting device. I think this is the first time I’ve opened my laptop since I got it. I’ll do my best to keep things up in the future. I spent part of last weekend out of town visiting my husband’s very large family, and one cousin mentioned that she’d been showing my food blog to her co-workers. So apparently I’m not just impressing my Facebook friends anymore.

I actually made the recipe I’m posting here about a month ago, during one of the brief moments this spring in which it wasn’t raining. We’ve actually been having a Game of Thrones themed main dish every Sunday night since the premier (in which I made the gigantic feast) and one of the earlier ones I did was Honeyed Chicken. I mean, seriously, what part of the combination of honey and chicken isn’t awesome? Back when I was a kid, my favorite thing to do was to dip KFC into the honey they served on the side. I seem to recall it being real honey and not that honey-flavored corn syrup abomination they serve now, but it could have always been that crap and I was just too young to know it. But I digress. The key point here is that honey + chicken = awesome.

Start with a whole chicken. You can either ask your butcher to spatchcock (remove the backbone) and split it, or do it yourself–there are plenty of videos on Youtube that will show you how to do it. Once it’s split, drizzle it with melted ghee (don’t use butter at this point, because the smoke point is too low) and sprinkle it with salt and pepper.
spatchcocked chicken
Heat your grill to about 375. Use indirect heat here–pile all the coals on one side then put your chicken to the other side, or use the platesetter on a Big Green Egg, or do whatever you heathens who have gas grills do to get indirect. Start it off skin and meat side down. Turn it after about 20 minutes, and put a meat thermometer into the breast or thigh. You’re shooting for a final temp of 160-165 in the breast or 170-175 in the thigh.

Meanwhile, as the bird slowly gets up to temperature, melt together a couple of tablespoons of butter with a tablespoon to two tablespoons of honey. Add a splash of lemon to taste. When the bird is about 10 degrees short of final temperature, go outside and baste the skin with this mixture. You can make more for dipping if you want. During the last 10 degrees of cooking, that mixture will caramelize on the skin a little bit, and eventually you’ll end up with this.
honeyed chicken
Toddler KILLED this bird. This may be the most Toddler-friendly meal I’ve made to date.