Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Need Some Fresh Dinner Ideas? The 163 Best Paleo Slow Cooker Recipes Cookbook (by Judith Finlayson) Can Help!


Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this book, free of charge, from Robert Rose Publishing, for review purposes on this blog. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it

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One of the things when you start a new diet is the loss of familiar recipes- you have to learn to cook again, in many ways, as you substitute items, and learn about rebalancing flavors, fats and thickeners.

I've got a great book today that is perfect for those on Paleo diets!

 The 163 Best Paleo Slow Cooker Recipes cover

Synopsis:

Delicious and satisfying Paleo diet friendly slow cooker recipes that everyone can enjoy.
Enjoy old standards and new classics with this very topical collection of slow cooker recipes. They've been refined to meet the needs of people who subscribe to the Paleo or Primal lifestyle. The Paleo diet is currently one of the most popular diets being followed today and has been embraced by nearly 1.5 million people in North America. The recipes don't contain any grains or legumes (therefore making all of them gluten-free), no refined sugars, no refined oils or processed ingredients -- the basic principles of the diet.
Slow cookers are hugely popular because they're so convenient and the results so delicious -- all the recipes in this book pay very close attention to Paleo guidelines while also recognizing that there's a wide variety of reasons that people choose to eat Paleo that go beyond weight loss. So there's room to be flexible depending on your personal requirements and expectations of the diet.
It's all here: from great family food to more sophisticated recipes for entertaining, not to mention luscious desserts: Now even people who follow the Paleo lifestyle can enjoy easy delectable meals that reflect an outstanding variety of fresh flavors, cuisines and textures.

Review
While we aren't on a Paleo diet, much of the re-mineralizing diet is akin to it, so we're found ourselves cutting out condiments, eating fresher foods, and making simple dishes. With this new cookbook, we've found new recipes that are both Paleo/Re-Mineralizing AND gluten-free, or easily made gluten-free! The author does a great job in breaking down the foods for a Paleo diet and how to best work with your slow cooker. To my generation this seems like review, but for many younger cooks, it will be new (and enlightening to them!).

I love the variety of recipes in the book, and we've enjoyed quite a few of them already!  The book covers all areas of food dishes, making it a very versatile cookbook indeed. It is also helpful in converting some of your favorite recipes, by finding ones that are similar! This would be a great holiday gift for any foodie on your list!

Here's my list of favorites from each section, many of which would be great for holiday meals too:


  • Starters and Snacks: Swedish Meatballs (BEYOND yummy!), and Spicy Cashews and Maple Orange Pecans (perfect for gift giving!), 
  • Soups: Shrimp Bisque (a very Louisiana styled dish!) Wild Mushroom Soup (Miss Grace's fav), Mexican Style Chicken Soup
  • Poultry: French Country Chicken, Chicken Provencal, and Saffron Braised Chicken
  • Fish and Seafood: Zesty Seafood Chowder (Dad's fav), Spanish Style Fish Stew
  • Beef and Veal: Short Ribs in Rich Mushroom Gravy, Mom's Sunday Pot Roast, Sloppy Joes, and Ranch House Country Fried Steak
  • Pork and Lamb: Irish Stew, Chipolte Pork Tacos, Tex-Mex Pork Stew
  • Just Veggies: Ginger Spiked Sweet Potatoes with Maples, Louisiana Ratatouille, Basic Tomato Sauce (Marinara)
  • Desserts: The Ultimate Baked Apples, Poached Pears in Chocolate Sauce (perfect for a fancy Thanksgiving dessert!)


  • And how about a sample recipe, that's straight from right here in Louisiana?

     The 163 Best Paleo Slow Cooker Recipes down home shrimp


    Down Home Shrimp
    Here’s a dish, Cajun-inspired, that packs just a hint of heat and yields a great sense of 
    freshness. It makes a great one-pot meal.

    Ingredients:
    1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined, shells reserved 
    2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice 
    1⁄4 tsp cayenne pepper 
    1 cup dry white wine 
    1 cup water 
    2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil 
    1 onion, finely chopped 
    2 stalks celery, peeled and diced 
    1 tsp cracked black peppercorns
    1⁄2 tsp sea salt 
    1⁄2 tsp dried thyme 
    2 bay leaves 
    1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes with juice 
    1 cup shrimp stock (see Tips
    2 cups thinly sliced okra (see Tips AND Note
    1 cup corn kernels 
    1 red or green bell pepper, seeded and diced 
    2 tbsp clarified butter 
    2 cloves garlic, minced 

    Directions: 
    1. In a small bowl, combine shrimp, lemon juice and cayenne. Stir well, cover and refrigerate until ready to use. 

    2. In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and celery and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add peppercorns, salt, thyme and bay leaves and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add tomatoes with juice and bring to a boil.

    3. Transfer to slow cooker stoneware. Stir in shrimp stock. Cover and cook on Low for 6 hours or on High for 3 hours. Stir in okra, corn and bell pepper. Cover and cook on High for 20 minutes, until okra is tender. Remove and discard bay leaves.

    4. When you are ready to serve, heat 1 tbsp (15 mL) of the clarified butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Increase heat to medium-high. Using a slotted spoon, immediately add reserved shrimp, in batches, and cook, stirring, until they turn pink, adding remaining butter as necessary. Transfer to slow cooker as completed. Add marinade juices to pan and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add to slow cooker, stir well and serve.

    Tips

    If you are halving this recipe, be sure to use a small (11⁄2 to 3 quart) slow cooker.

    Okra, a tropical vegetable, has a great flavor but it becomes unpleasantly sticky when overcooked. Choose young okra pods, 2 to 4 inches long, that don’t feel sticky to the touch. (If sticky they are too ripe.) Gently scrub the pods and cut off the top and tail before slicing. 

    NOTE- any Louisiana cook can tell you, the only way to truly avoid SLIMY okra (which happens when it breaks down while cooking) in soup or gumbo, is to pan fry, roast (like you do green beans) or grill it first. OR, if your family really HATES Okra, if you can find some Zatarans's FilĂ© Powder, you can also use it in place of the okra, just sprinkle enough to your liking, for thickening, to get a similar flavor. 

    To make shrimp stock: In a saucepan, combine shrimp shells, white wine and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Strain, pushing the shells against the sieve to extract as much flavor as possible. Measure 1 cup and set aside. Freeze excess.


    Make Ahead

    Complete Steps 1 and 2. Cover and refrigerate shrimp, shrimp stock and vegetable mixture separately, overnight. When you’re ready to cook, continue with the recipe.


    About the Author:

    Judith Finlayson is a food journalist and author. She began her career writing featured food articles and developing recipes for magazines. She is author of The Convenience Cook and 150 Best Slow Cooker Recipes. She lives in Toronto. Check out her website for more. 


    1 comment:

    1. This sounds like a wonderful recipe book. I've been seeing so much about the Paleo Diet everywhere.

      ReplyDelete

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