Primal eating Â is all that… and a bag of bacon.
It is a decadent way of living that fuels my body AND bewitches my taste buds.
And after 30+ years of the Standard American Diet, changing tacks can be a challenge. Thankfully, I have been able to find ‘legal’ Primal substitutions for just about anything my little heart desires.
This post highlights some of my strongest cravings and how I’ve learned to enjoy them while being Primal.
First, and foremost: Pizza.
Pavlov couldn’t top this one. The faintest hint of a pie, just the idea of one, is enough to start the jets. How does that mesh with a Primal diet, you ask? Easily, especially if you are ok with cheese and can source out the best of the options out there for your favorite toppings.
Pastured eggs, frying in your favorite fat (I used Kerrygold butter), create the base of this pie – either scrambled or, as I did here, whole eggs (I love me some runny yolks!) For toppings I used pepperoni, olives, basil, and parmesan and mozzarella cheeses. I distributed them on the eggs, turned the heat down to medium low to keep the eggs from getting too dark on the bottom, and covered the pan until the egg whites were cooked through and the cheese was melty.
Another option is to put the Primal pizza pie under the broiler for a few minutes right at the end to brown the cheese, if you have an oven-safe omelet pan. This is what it looks like when ready to inhale:
Another cuisine that’s been a long-time favorite of mine is Chinese food.
Americanized Chinese food is one of the worst things out there for anyone, though. This is my Primal version of Mandarin Orange chicken.
I marinated chicken thighs for about an hour in a mixture of freshly-squeezed orange innards (juice & solids), sesame oil, Coconut Amino’s, garlic, ginger, sesame seeds, and green onions. After marinating, I put the skin-side-up thighs and the marinade in a pan and roasted them at 350 until the skin was dark and crispy and the inside temp was 160. Crispy chicken skin pwns breading, in my not-so-humble opinion.
While the chicken was roasting, I put Kerrygold, cut-up mushrooms & nappa cabbage, and a bag of broccoli slaw into my cast-iron pan. I mixed everything, added a touch of water & covered to steam for 5-10 minutes. I added the same seasonings as the chicken-marinade, minus the orange, and sauteed until tender. Better than take-out:
St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner, but for my family it doesn’t have to be that holiday to want Corned Beef & Cabbage.
I grew up with the standard boiled-in-water meat, cabbage, taters, onions, and carrots. My methods have evolved of late, thanks to Primal. I procured a massive hunk of meat from Whole Foods, added a ton of onions and a bottle of Guinness, covered with foil and roasted at 300 for 3 hours, then uncovered for an hour.
We had the traditional side of carrots that had been roasted separately (as much as I love Guinness, it’s not how I like my veg to taste).
No more boiled cabbage for us, either. I used my trusty cast-iron pan, Kerrygold, bacon grease, and crumbled bacon to create an over-the-top side dish that even my youngest devours.
Instead of potatoes we used a recipe my dear friend Rani Merens told me about using cauliflower, butter, salt, pepper, cream cheese, and green onions to make a Primal version of Champ. Ireland, eat your heart out:
For me, no day is complete without some form of dessert.
It can be something as simple as a square of dark chocolate, homemade ice cream, or an almond-flour baked treat. This little gem is a new creation, something I came up with because I was striking out on finding the items I needed to make the dessert I wanted to highlight. I think that’s called divine intervention, actually.
I found some great-looking mondo strawberries at Whole Foods. I melted dark chocolate, mixed in a little orange extract and dipped (drowned?) the strawberries before sprinkling the chocolate with orange zest & sea salt. A few impatient seconds in the freezer to set up and then dig in.
Farmer’s market in-season berries & fruit can look forward to the royal treatment:
And so can you.