salt & pepper goes paleo, and a recipe

paleo deviled eggs

salt & pepper is going paleo! Well, paleo-ish.

A little background – a few months ago I cut out dairy & sugar. My allergies had been acting up, my skin was going a bit haywire, and I was getting constant sinus headaches… something needed to change. So I met with Megan from Prescribe Nutrition (she’s awesome!!) and she recommended first and foremost cutting out all dairy. Since I didn’t have the biggest sweet tooth anyways, she was like, why not give up sugar too? At that point, giving up cheese sounded like the most horrific thing in the world, but I was willing to give it a shot. I didn’t think the sugar would be that bad, but the thing is, it’s in everything! So, I essentially was cutting out all processed food as well. And honestly, it wasn’t that hard.

After a month of detoxing I was feeling good, so Megan signed me for an even more strict detox, essentially a modified paleo diet. Paleo gets a bad rep I think, as everyone thinks it’s another fad diet like Atkins, but really it’s all about changing your lifestyle and eating foods that aren’t going to irritate your system. Paleo promotes eating foods that are

organic

grass-fed

pastured

not processed

fresh

local

You’ll cut out dairy, grains, legumes, sugar & processed foods. You’ll focus on organic grass-fed or pastured meats, organic pastured eggs, organic fruits and vegetables, nuts & healthy oils. Essentially the goal is to eat the food in as close to its natural form as possible – cows are meant to eat grass and roam free, pigs & chickens are natural grazers and usually nibble at a bit of everything, and fruit & veggies shouldn’t be doused in pesticides.

It’s all about clean eating, and as soon as I made the switch to eating this way I really started to feel better. I can’t remember the last time I got a headache, my eczema has vastly improved with less flare ups, and everything just seemed to click. So, I’m sticking with this as much as possible. This is not to say that I’m going cold-turkey paleo, and giving up pizza & bread forever, let’s not get dramatic now! I’m all about the 80/20 rule and am literally counting down the days till we go up to Healdsburg in a few weeks and go to Scopa! But I’ll be cooking this way at home as much as possible and choosing more paleo-like options while eating out.

And, there are some things that paleo-eaters are on the fence about – if you can tolerate dairy, full fat greek-yogurt and grass-fed butter seem to be a-okay (I know, it’s hard to go for the full-fat after everything we’ve been taught!). Potatoes get some people all fired up, but most agree that they’re just fine in a paleo diet. If you are going to eat cheese, try to find it raw (which our local Whole Foods sells) and eat it in moderation. Some people will add back in organic whole grains or rice. So, you don’t have to be super strict about this, it’s more about changing your diet to be less reliant on pre-packaged, processed foods and to make better choices about the quality of your ingredients.

So now, the recipe! Deviled eggs have become a favorite appetizer, lunch, or sometimes snack of mine since going paleo. You’ll find a gazillion recipes online, but this is my go-to as it’s really simple and I always have the ingredients on hand.

Deviled Eggs

Deviled Eggs
(makes 20 servings)

10 organic pastured eggs
2 tbsp mustard
2 tbsp mayo (homemade or Sir K’s if possible)
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly cracked pepper
4 slices organic bacon
fresh chives

First, cook the bacon – I heat my oven to 350 degrees, and then take a baking tray covered by a cookie drying rack and place the bacon on top of the rack. It usually takes 20-25 minutes to crisp up this way, depending on how thick the bacon is.

While the bacon is cooking, take the eggs and place them in a saucepan and fill it with water, covering them by 1/2 inch of water. Bring the water to a boil, then turn down so the water stays at a medium simmer (still bubbling, nothing crazy though) for 6-7 minutes.

Remove from heat, then place under cool running water. When they’re cool enough to touch, peel them and cut in half. Remove the yolks into a separate bowl or food processor.

Add the mayo, mustard, salt and pepper and either mash it up or give it a blitz in the food processor.

Spoon the mixture into each egg half (or, if you’re feeling fancy, use a piping bag), top with 1/3 a slice of bacon, and then snip the ends of the chives over the top and finish with another crack of pepper.

zoodles

photo 5I first stumbled upon Zoodles on Nom Nom Paleo, and then started to see them all across the web… they’re super trendy I suppose! You may be wondering what zoodles are, with such a silly name and all. They’re simply zucchini strands, cut into spirals using a handy dandy machine you can buy on Amazon.

photo 1

All you do is cut off the ends of the zucchini, place it in the machine horizontally, and then start cranking the handle. Spirals galore will start pouring out, it’s actually quite fun.

photo 3

To make it a meal I made a quick cheats meat sauce (ground meat + store-bought pasta sauce) and sauteed the zoodles in a little olive oil to soften slightly.

photo 4

That’s it! Just serve with some grated cheese on top and you’ll be good to go.