It’s winter, there aren’t any fresh, local vegetables to be seen around these parts (unless they’re greenhouse grown or stored root vegetables), and now that we’re at the peak of winter, and the holidays are over, it’s easy to slip into a ‘What’s for Dinner?’ rut. Same old, same old. It’s hard enough to get a good, warming meal on the dinner table that is both delicious and nutritious, but it’s even harder when you’re pressed for time.
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Living with food restrictions can feel, well, restricting… especially when it comes to snacks. For those of us who are trying to lessen or eliminate chronic inflammation symptoms through the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol (AIP), it can sometimes seem daunting to figure out what kind of munchy thing to eat when you’re feeling a little peckish. After all, lunches and dinners can be pretty much “normal” in terms of eating a meat, and a salad or veggies (free of nightshades, of course). Breakfasts are certainly a little more challenging if you’re looking for grain-free, egg-free breakfasts, but with a little practice, you can get used to eating dinner for breakfast. But what do you do if you’re looking for AIP snacks that go beyond a piece of fruit or cut-up veggies?
No worries – I’ve got you covered with both recipes and *gasp* store-bought, AIP-compliant snacking options. Recently, the awesome people at Barefoot Provisions provided me with some AIP and allergen-friendly goodies from their store, and I’ve included some of those in amongst this list of AIP-friendly snacks.
I have to confess that I approach Chinese-style cooking with much the same attitude as my parents – chop a bunch of ingredients, toss them in, taste, season and voilà! Dinner! So I was inspired when I saw A Girl Worth Saving’s Paleo Crispy Noodle recipe, I wanted to make my own real food, safe-for-me-to-eat, Cantonese Chow Mein. Basically, this recipe is me throwing together ingredients that are typical to Chinese stir-frying and tossing them together and declaring it delicious.
And here’s the thing – that’s the way I think more people should approach cooking. Buy real, whole food ingredients. Toss them together. Season them. See what happens! This is why, you’ll see that the recipe below includes an ingredient that’s probably never seen in real Chinese cooking – nutritional yeast. I added the nutritional yeast to the spiralized turnip noodles because it worked in giving the noodles a more savory, ‘umami’ flavour. So how authentic is this recipe? Well, my mama will probably say it’s not, especially because of this ‘special’ ingredient. After all, she did say my ‘char siu’ recipe was a little lacking in authenticity ;) But for me, it works, so I write it down in hopes that I’ll be able to re-create it again when I want to.
Now that it’s officially fall, I feel like I’m finally allowed to let go of the notion that there is any summer left, and I can enjoy all that autumn has to offer. It feels a little wrong to me to be sipping a pumpkin spiced latte when the leaves on the tree haven’t started to change. But, now that the autumnal equinox has past, I can officially PUMPKIN ALL THE THINGS. It happens every year – last year, it was just the latte and the pie. But this year, I unearthed a LOT, and I do mean A LOT of grain-free pumpkin recipes – probably enough to turn you orange! So if you enjoy this season gourd, check these out. (If you happen upon this and it’s not pumpkin season, you can always use canned pumpkin or even other squashes in its place!)
It’s been one HOT summer, save for a week of (much welcomed) cooler weather… and I have NO complaints about any of it. :) Being in Canada, we actually get our fair share of heat and humidity, because it isn’t always the Great White North. One way I’ve been cooling off lately is making different frozen treats – so many, in fact, that I recently partnered with Jennifer Robins of Predominantly Paleo to make a whole book of them. What sets our book, ‘We Can ALL Scream for Ice Cream’ apart from many others, however, is that our treats are all Paleo Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) friendly! For me, these recipes are purely selfish, since I’m among the growing number in the Paleo community who have found even further improvements to health by cutting out inflammatory foods like eggs, nuts, seeds and nightshades.
Now these popsicles aren’t in the book, but they are AIP friendly! (Thankfully, I can actually tolerate chocolate, but I know that many who follow AIP can’t successfully re-introduce chocolate, so these are actually made with carob powder. If you can tolerate cocoa, you can certainly use it instead).