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Primal Pizza

Ok, so one thing that I have missed a lot, since cutting out grains from my diet, is pizza. I have been searching for a pizza crust recipe that doesn’t contain flour for a while now and not had much success.

I tried a coconut crust, once, but it was a disaster. You can’t see from this photo but the base was really soggy and it had to be eaten with a knife and fork. It tasted good but I wanted one that I could hold in my hand.

So I kept searching and came across this recipe for a pie crust from Comfy Belly. I made some substitutions and voilá! Primal Pizza a la Kate was born!!

I made this pizza twice earlier on in the week and once again tonight lol. Here is what I came up with:

Primal Pizza Base
1 cup coconut “flour”
1/2 cup almonds
1/2 cup toasted peanuts (I didn’t have enough almonds so I made the rest of the cup up with peanuts)
1 cup of grated parmesan cheese (I topped the cup up with grated pategras cheese as I didn’t have enough parmesan)
2 eggs
1 tbsp Olive Oil
1/8 each of oregano and basil
pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 350ºF or 160ºC (or thereabouts). Chop the almonds, peanuts, and coconut in the food processor. Add in the oregano, basil, salt and the lightly beaten eggs and olive oil to the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Cook for 15 minutes. Take the pizza out of the oven, add your favourite toppings, and return it to the oven for a further 5 minutes.

It wasn’t a huge pizza base – I could have made it larger by making the base thinner. It was really, really filling though: my partner and I ate half the pizza each but I could have done with eating only 3 pieces (and he could have done with eating 5 lol). I topped the pizza with mozzarella cheese, pategras cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, and a mix of fiambres. Fiambres are a different kinds of meats that Argentineans use for picadas. Picadas are a kind of antipasto platter. So I had bacon, salami, and some other random assortments of pork meat (I’m not sure what their translations are to English). The base was also crunchy which is always a plus.

The peanuts might seem weird in a pizza base but for me (and my partner) it was a huge success. I’m sooooo happy about that because 1) I can now enjoy eating pizzas with my partner (who has a slight penchant for them :P) and 2) it was less expensive than buying a pizza. I also left the cup of cheese out the last two times I made the pizza – it was just as yummy. In fact, I didn’t even notice the difference.

Enjoy!

Primal Nutella

Mmmmm a healthy nutella (hiding under the strawberries) – who would’ve thought it?

I cannot claim fame to this recipe – it comes courtesy of Gillian Fritzsche from last year’s competition at Mark’s Daily Apple.

It didn’t turned out as well for me but that could be because the food processor I have is old and I may have put too much oil in there. It was yummy though and I couldn’t have come up with a more perfect healthy primal nutella myself :).

Let me know how yours turns out :).

Earthquake hits New Zealand

I know this isn’t a post related to the Primal Lifestyle but here goes anyway.

I’ve just found out that an earthquake of 7.2 on the Richter Scaler has hit 30km from the city where my family lives in Christchurch, New Zealand.

I could only get in touch with my Gran, but she tells me that everyone is safe and sound. There is a lot of damage to buildings etc. but so far no deaths have been reported. A few people have broken bones and bruises, another has serious cuts from broken glass, and another was injured by a falling chimney. I’m so thankful nothing worse has happened especially when you think that this earthquake nearly equals the magnitude of the earthquakes in Chile and Haiti. Fun fact – I was woken up by the earthquake in Chile and I live bang smack in the middle of Argentina.

I hope that the news doesn’t change. My thoughts and love are with all New Zealanders right now.

I love competitions

I woke up this morning to a lovely email telling me that I’d won The Primal Blueprint Cookbook. It was a competition run by Primal Toad earlier this week.

Thanks Todd for the competition – I really am thrilled to have won the book.

I won’t be able to use it immediately as I will be travelling from the end of next week until the end of September but I promise that once I’m home I’ll show the delicious recipes I create from the cookbook.

I want to share the love a little – Shelby Stidham has a competition running right now for a 12 pack Element Bar Giveaway. I haven’t tried these myself yet… has anyone else?

Dinner at a restaurant

I didn’t do too well getting into the photo I know hehe

I went out for a farewell dinner last night with my old workmates as I’m leaving Argentina soon. I decided to take some photos of the food/evening…

The girls I worked with have seen me go through weight loss and weight gain for the last year and a half; most of us were “dieting” the whole time I worked. When I quit my job I was about 1 month into my Primal lifestyle; the girls saw the changes it wrought and consequently they were all dying to know what I was doing to lose the extra fat. However, when I told them that I no longer eat wheat (and very little sugar) they didn’t really want to know about it lol. It’s amazing how ingrained in our culture wheat is (pun intended).

I ordered a steak with salad (cabbage and hard boiled egg) on the side and added in some cashew nuts and walnuts which I brought from home lol. I couldn’t eat the whole steak – it was massive! I also splurged later and ate some lemon ice-cream. Good thing I’m going to buy myself an ice-cream maker when I get back home to NZ! I can’t wait to try out recipes and post them on here – bring on Summer :D.

My workmates ordered spaghetti or chicken with fried potatoes (yummy trans fat).

Has anyone else come across this situation where people want to know how to lose the extra fat but when you tell them that you no longer eat wheat or other sugars then they’re not so keen? How does one go about explaining the Primal lifestyle food choices? I just read this free e-book from Health Habits the other day and I think it does quite a good job of explaining the Paleoers. I also know that Mark’s Daily Apple has a pdf /e-book that you can print off (will try and find the link to it to put on here) to show people who are interested in the Primal lifestyle. But what if you’re not walking around with those printed off… what do you tell people?

My two favourite spices

Cumin and Paprika

I’m not quite sure what it is about these two spices in particular but I adore using them together with meats, veggies, and sauces. Since going Primal, I’ve enjoyed using a whole range of different spices much more instead of using so much salt.

My Lunch today:

Meatballs with coconut, cumin, and paprika.
Pumpkin fries coated in cumin and paprika.
Dipping sauce of cream cheese, lemon juice, cumin, and paprika.

Overload? Maybe. But it was scrummy.

Cumin is rich in iron and Paprika is rich in vitamin C . Large quantities of each need to be consumed before these have any significant effect… but I think I’m on the right track haha.

I also use cumin with lemon juice and butter for a delicious sauce for chicken and a cream and paprika sauce for meat.

What are your favourite spices for making your dishes more flavoursome? Does anyone else have a slight penchant for these two spices?

My creative weekend baking

Ok, it wasn’t *that* creative but I had fun trying out new things :D.

I made some peanut butter (which turned out the best it has yet) and promptly turned half of it into peanut truffles. I halved the recipe from Comfy Belly and I reduced the amount of honey from 1/2 cup to 1 tbsp and added 5 drops of stevia – but even that was too sweet in my opinion.

Peanut Truffles (half the original recipe)
1/2 cup
peanut butter
1/2 cup honey
2 tbsp butter
2 tsps vanilla
pinch salt

Directions (from Comfy Belly)
In a medium saucepan, combine and simmer the honey, butter, vanilla and salt. Simmer for about 10 minutes (I did this for around 5 minutes only because I had half the mixture).
Add peanut butter to simmering liquid and blend while simmering. When fully blended, turn off flame.
Butter a glass or metal pan about 8 x 8 inches. Quite often I also add some wax or parchment paper at the bottom to make it even easier to remove the peanut butter truffles.
Pour the peanut butter truffle mixture into the pan and place the pan in the freezer for at least 2 hours.
Remove the pan and cut the peanut butter truffles into squares.

Kate – I melted some chocolate and butter together and dipped the peanut truffles in it. It was the first time I’ve successfully done that so I was so stoked with how they turned out. The photo is terrible, apologies for that, but you can still still the yumminess!

On Sunday I used the second half of the peanut butter to make cookies. I didn’t follow a recipe and made it up as I went along but they’re turned out quite well.

Peanut butter, coconut, and apricot cookies
1/2 cup peanut butter
2 eggs
about 1/2 cup desiccated coconut (processed more finely in the food processor)
5 drops stevia
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp lemon juice
chopped dried apricots
additional chocolate chips

I mixed the peanut butter with the 2 eggs and then added in the stevia, coconut “flour”, and baking soda. I think I then added in a little bit more coconut “flour” but I’m sure they would have been fine with the original 1/2 cup. Mix all the ingredients together and then add in the dried apricots and chocolate chips. Finally add in the lemon juice. Place on wax/parchment paper and bake for 10-12 minutes at 160ºC. I melted some chocolate over the top so they looked a little fancier :D.

Lunch on Sunday was pancakes.

2 eggs
3 tbsp coconut
vanilla
cinnamon
stevia

I separated the egg yolks and whites and beat the egg whites until they made stiffish peaks.  Then I mixed the coconut, egg yolks, cinnamon, vanilla, and stevia together and added it to the egg white mixture.

I topped them with kiwifruit and strawberries and the tiny little piece of bacon that I had left hehe. I didn’t feel satisfied after eating this though! I think the carb content was too high and I kept thinking about food the way I used to before I started on the Primal path. So I then ate 4 slices of salami with cheese on top and a small handful of cashew nuts. I was right as rain until dinner time practically :).

It looks pretty though with the bright colours!