The Paleo Palate

Meatballs A La Pizzaiola

This recipe is not my own. I found it while browsing online and really wanted to try it. It turned out so good. My Pink Iron gym mate, Bree asked me for a meat recipe so I’m sharing it here with credits to Giada De Laurentis and Food Network. It’s not 100% paleo due to the cheese but if you love cheese like I do and  can find some raw unpasteurized cheese, why not indulge occasionally.

Meat ball recipe:
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/meatballs-a-la-pizzaiola-recipe/index.html
If you have a hard time viewing the link, I copied and pasted the recipe on here with added notes on what ingredients I substituted.)

Ingredients
8 ounces smoked mozzarella cheese (I used fresh mozzarella)
2 large shallots, chopped
1/4 cup (5 to 6) sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
1/3 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1/3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (may substitute with raw cheese)
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese (Whole Foods carry raw unpasteurized Parmesan cheese from grassfed cows)
1 tablespoon tomato paste (organic)
3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 pounds ground beef chuck (80% lean) I used grassfed ground beef
1 pound ground pork (I used ground veal)
Olive oil, for frying (I used Kerrygold butter)
Vegetable oil, for frying (I used Kerrygold butter or coconut oil)
Marinara sauce, warmed, for serving (You can buy paleo approved sauce or make it yourself. See recipe link below.)

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Dice the smoked mozzarella into 1/2-inch cubes. Set aside.
In a food processor, pulse the shallots, sun-dried tomatoes, basil, shredded mozzarella, parmesan, tomato paste, red pepper flakes, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper until blended. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Add the beef and pork and, using a wooden spoon or clean hands, stir until combined. Form into 1 1/4-to-1 1/2-inch meatballs. Insert 1 cube smoked mozzarella into the center of each meatball and form the meat around it, enclosing the cheese.
In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, pour equal parts olive oil and vegetable oil to fill the pan halfway. Heat over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer reaches 350 degrees F. In batches, fry the meatballs until dark brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove and drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
Place the fried meatballs on a foil-lined baking sheet. Put in the oven and bake until cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool slightly, then serve immediately with marinara sauce, if desired.

Marinara Sauce Recipe
http://allrecipes.com/recipe/best-marinara-sauce-yet/

Meatballs A La Pizzaiola

This recipe is not my own. I found it while browsing online and really wanted to try it. It turned out so good. My Pink Iron gym mate, Bree asked me for a meat recipe so I’m sharing it here with credits to Giada De Laurentis and Food Network. It’s not 100% paleo due to the cheese but if you love cheese like I do and can find some raw unpasteurized cheese, why not indulge occasionally.

Meat ball recipe:
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/meatballs-a-la-pizzaiola-recipe/index.html
If you have a hard time viewing the link, I copied and pasted the recipe on here with added notes on what ingredients I substituted.)

Ingredients
8 ounces smoked mozzarella cheese (I used fresh mozzarella)
2 large shallots, chopped
1/4 cup (5 to 6) sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
1/3 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1/3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (may substitute with raw cheese)
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese (Whole Foods carry raw unpasteurized Parmesan cheese from grassfed cows)
1 tablespoon tomato paste (organic)
3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 pounds ground beef chuck (80% lean) I used grassfed ground beef
1 pound ground pork (I used ground veal)
Olive oil, for frying (I used Kerrygold butter)
Vegetable oil, for frying (I used Kerrygold butter or coconut oil)
Marinara sauce, warmed, for serving (You can buy paleo approved sauce or make it yourself. See recipe link below.)

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Dice the smoked mozzarella into 1/2-inch cubes. Set aside.
In a food processor, pulse the shallots, sun-dried tomatoes, basil, shredded mozzarella, parmesan, tomato paste, red pepper flakes, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper until blended. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Add the beef and pork and, using a wooden spoon or clean hands, stir until combined. Form into 1 1/4-to-1 1/2-inch meatballs. Insert 1 cube smoked mozzarella into the center of each meatball and form the meat around it, enclosing the cheese.
In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, pour equal parts olive oil and vegetable oil to fill the pan halfway. Heat over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer reaches 350 degrees F. In batches, fry the meatballs until dark brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove and drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
Place the fried meatballs on a foil-lined baking sheet. Put in the oven and bake until cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool slightly, then serve immediately with marinara sauce, if desired.

Marinara Sauce Recipe
http://allrecipes.com/recipe/best-marinara-sauce-yet/

Paleo Beef Embutido (Filipino Version)

2 lbs ground grassfed beef (may substitute with pork or chicken if desired)
2 raw eggs (free range if available)
1/2 cup almond meal
2 medium sized organic carrots finely cubed
1/2 of the large yellow onion finely chopped 
1 green bell pepper finely chopped
1 red bell pepper finely chopped
4 tablespoons organic tomato paste
3 tablespoons finely chopped pickles (paleo approved, optional unless you want a Filipino version)
1 cup raisins (optional, I didn’t use this because my husband doesn’t like it sweet)
4 tablespoons coconut aminos
Salt and pepper to taste or about 1 teaspoon each
6 hard boiled eggs (peeled, set aside for filling)
If you can find a paleo approved hotdog, you can use it for the filling to get the authentic Filipino embutido

With clean hands, mix the ground beef, raw eggs, almond meal, carrots, onions, bell peppers, tomato paste, pickles, raisins, coconut aminos, salt and pepper. 

Grease three aluminum foil with grassfed butter or coconut oil. Divide the meat mixture in three. Flatten the meat between half inch to an inch thick, about 6 x 10 inches on the foil. Embed in the middle two hard boiled eggs and cooked paleo hotdog (if you have any). Roll the aluminum foil to seal the top end of the meatloaf to the other end with the eggs and hotdog in the middle. Twist the edges to seal. It’s gonna look like an aluminum wrapped salami. Repeat this with the other two mixtures. 

Embutidos are usually steamed but I baked mine in the oven for 1 hour and 15minutes at 375F. If you want it steamed, you can do that for about the same amount of time. 

Unwrap the embutido on a serving plate then slice it before serving.

Paleo Beef Embutido (Filipino Version)

2 lbs ground grassfed beef (may substitute with pork or chicken if desired)
2 raw eggs (free range if available)
1/2 cup almond meal
2 medium sized organic carrots finely cubed
1/2 of the large yellow onion finely chopped
1 green bell pepper finely chopped
1 red bell pepper finely chopped
4 tablespoons organic tomato paste
3 tablespoons finely chopped pickles (paleo approved, optional unless you want a Filipino version)
1 cup raisins (optional, I didn’t use this because my husband doesn’t like it sweet)
4 tablespoons coconut aminos
Salt and pepper to taste or about 1 teaspoon each
6 hard boiled eggs (peeled, set aside for filling)
If you can find a paleo approved hotdog, you can use it for the filling to get the authentic Filipino embutido

With clean hands, mix the ground beef, raw eggs, almond meal, carrots, onions, bell peppers, tomato paste, pickles, raisins, coconut aminos, salt and pepper.

Grease three aluminum foil with grassfed butter or coconut oil. Divide the meat mixture in three. Flatten the meat between half inch to an inch thick, about 6 x 10 inches on the foil. Embed in the middle two hard boiled eggs and cooked paleo hotdog (if you have any). Roll the aluminum foil to seal the top end of the meatloaf to the other end with the eggs and hotdog in the middle. Twist the edges to seal. It’s gonna look like an aluminum wrapped salami. Repeat this with the other two mixtures.

Embutidos are usually steamed but I baked mine in the oven for 1 hour and 15minutes at 375F. If you want it steamed, you can do that for about the same amount of time.

Unwrap the embutido on a serving plate then slice it before serving.

Paleo Purple Yam Pie

Another one of my paleo Filipino dessert experiments that came out so good. This one is purple yam pie also called “ube halaya” in Filipino. Ube is a favorite among the pinoy desserts and I love creating new recipes around it. I brought these pies to my gym, Pink Iron, not expecting such a great reaction from the ladies. They loved them. I got a lot of requests for the recipe so here it is. 

Elana’s pantry has an amazing pie crust recipe that I really love. I just followed it and added about 3 tbsp of raw honey depending on the type of pie I’m making. I didn’t pre-bake it because I was baking the filling as well. I also used greased muffin pans instead of a single pie pan for individual serving. 
 http://www.elanaspantry.com/paleo-pie-crust/. If you have trouble viewing, I cut and pasted the recipe below.

Paleo Pie Crust
2 cups blanched almond flour
¼ teaspoon celtic sea salt
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 egg
Place flour and salt in food processor and pulse briefly
Add coconut oil and egg and pulse until mixture forms a ball
Press dough into a 9-inch pie dish
Bake at 350° for 8-12 minutes
Makes 1 pie crust

If you wish to use this almond flour pie crust for a pie that requires baking, simply do not pre-bake it. Load it up with your filling and bake according to the recipe of your choice, or until your pie is all the way cooked through.

Purple Yam Filling
3 small to medium purple yam steamed for 30mins or until fully cooked (insert a fork in the middle of the yam, if it goes through easily, it’s done)
1/4 cup softened Kerrygold butter or any butter from grassfed cows (You can substitute with coconut oil. I used butter for the creamy taste and texture.)
1/2 can coconut cream
3 free range eggs
1/2 cup raw honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt

Pre heat oven to 350F. Peel and mash the yams. Place all ingredients in food processor and mix until puréed and creamy. Pour the yam mixture in each pie crust. Transfer in the oven and bake for 25-30 mins. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the refrigerator before frosting with coconut cream.

Coconut cream frosting
1/2 can coconut cream
1/4 cup raw honey
2 tbsp arrowroot powder diluted in 3 tbsp water 
1/4 cup coconut manna (Nutiva) also known as coconut butter (this added a rich flavor)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Bring the coconut cream to low simmer. Add the raw honey and coconut manna. When the coconut manna is fully dissolved and coming to a low simmer, add the rest of the ingredients.  The arrowroot will thicken the mixture, so remove from heat after you get a pasty consistency. Cool at room temperature then transfer to freezer. Leave in the freezer until its semi solid; about 3 hours. Whip it with a hand mixer until it forms a frosting consistency. 
You can start frosting the pies.  For more flavor, melt 2 tbsp paleo approved chocolate chips and 1/2 tsp coconut oil. Mix them then drizzle on top of the frosted pies. Have fun gobbling and sharing.

Paleo Purple Yam Pie

Another one of my paleo Filipino dessert experiments that came out so good. This one is purple yam pie also called “ube halaya” in Filipino. Ube is a favorite among the pinoy desserts and I love creating new recipes around it. I brought these pies to my gym, Pink Iron, not expecting such a great reaction from the ladies. They loved them. I got a lot of requests for the recipe so here it is.

Elana’s pantry has an amazing pie crust recipe that I really love. I just followed it and added about 3 tbsp of raw honey depending on the type of pie I’m making. I didn’t pre-bake it because I was baking the filling as well. I also used greased muffin pans instead of a single pie pan for individual serving.
http://www.elanaspantry.com/paleo-pie-crust/. If you have trouble viewing, I cut and pasted the recipe below.

Paleo Pie Crust
2 cups blanched almond flour
¼ teaspoon celtic sea salt
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 egg
Place flour and salt in food processor and pulse briefly
Add coconut oil and egg and pulse until mixture forms a ball
Press dough into a 9-inch pie dish
Bake at 350° for 8-12 minutes
Makes 1 pie crust

If you wish to use this almond flour pie crust for a pie that requires baking, simply do not pre-bake it. Load it up with your filling and bake according to the recipe of your choice, or until your pie is all the way cooked through.

Purple Yam Filling
3 small to medium purple yam steamed for 30mins or until fully cooked (insert a fork in the middle of the yam, if it goes through easily, it’s done)
1/4 cup softened Kerrygold butter or any butter from grassfed cows (You can substitute with coconut oil. I used butter for the creamy taste and texture.)
1/2 can coconut cream
3 free range eggs
1/2 cup raw honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt

Pre heat oven to 350F. Peel and mash the yams. Place all ingredients in food processor and mix until puréed and creamy. Pour the yam mixture in each pie crust. Transfer in the oven and bake for 25-30 mins. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the refrigerator before frosting with coconut cream.

Coconut cream frosting
1/2 can coconut cream
1/4 cup raw honey
2 tbsp arrowroot powder diluted in 3 tbsp water
1/4 cup coconut manna (Nutiva) also known as coconut butter (this added a rich flavor)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Bring the coconut cream to low simmer. Add the raw honey and coconut manna. When the coconut manna is fully dissolved and coming to a low simmer, add the rest of the ingredients. The arrowroot will thicken the mixture, so remove from heat after you get a pasty consistency. Cool at room temperature then transfer to freezer. Leave in the freezer until its semi solid; about 3 hours. Whip it with a hand mixer until it forms a frosting consistency.
You can start frosting the pies. For more flavor, melt 2 tbsp paleo approved chocolate chips and 1/2 tsp coconut oil. Mix them then drizzle on top of the frosted pies. Have fun gobbling and sharing.

Paleo Bibingka with Custard Topping

I wanted to make something with coconuts for my new coach at Pink Iron. So I’ve been imagining different recipes that involved coconut. Bibingka, a Filipino dessert, seemed to get stuck in my head so I experimented on this recipe. It turned out more like rice cake. I’m still naming it bibingka but will keep trying to improve on the recipe next time. If you have fresh young coconut meat, you can add it in strips to this mixture. I skipped it since I cannot find fresh coconut meat in my local grocery.  It’ll give your bibingka more flavor and texture. 

Bibingka 
1 &1/2 cup tapioca flour (Bob’s Red Mill)
3 eggs
3/4 cup coconut milk or cream
1/4 cup almond meal
1 cup raw organic honey
1tbsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup coconut manna (Nutiva)
1/2 cup coconut oil

Preheat oven at 375F. Grease or line with wax paper 2 - 8x6 pans with coconut oil or any pan that can hold at least 1/2 inch thick of the bibingka mixture. 

Mix all dry ingredients and wet ingredients in separate mixing bowls. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry while whisking.  Pour mixture in the pans. Place the pans in the oven for 30-45 minutes depending on the thickness of your cake.  Remove the cake from the oven when it is slightly brown and formed. Increase the oven heat to 400F. Pour the custard (see below) on the cake, spread it evenly, then sprinkle some cinnamon and coconut sugar on top. Place back in the oven for about 10 minutes or until the custard is slightly brown on top. Remove from heat and let it cool for a few hours before cutting. Garnish with coconut chips. 

Custard
1/4 cup coconut milk or cream 
2 eggs
1/2 cup honey
A pinch of salt
1/4 tsp vanilla

In a medium saucepan bring about 2 cups of water to boil. Using a medium stainless steel mixing bowl, mix all the ingredients above. Then place the bowl on top of the saucepan to create a double broiler effect. Keep whisking the mixture until it turns into a custard. Remove from heat. 

Topping
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp raw coconut sugar (from Whole Foods)
Roasted coconut chips (from Trader Joes)

Paleo Bibingka with Custard Topping

I wanted to make something with coconuts for my new coach at Pink Iron. So I’ve been imagining different recipes that involved coconut. Bibingka, a Filipino dessert, seemed to get stuck in my head so I experimented on this recipe. It turned out more like rice cake. I’m still naming it bibingka but will keep trying to improve on the recipe next time. If you have fresh young coconut meat, you can add it in strips to this mixture. I skipped it since I cannot find fresh coconut meat in my local grocery. It’ll give your bibingka more flavor and texture.

Bibingka
1 &1/2 cup tapioca flour (Bob’s Red Mill)
3 eggs
3/4 cup coconut milk or cream
1/4 cup almond meal
1 cup raw organic honey
1tbsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup coconut manna (Nutiva)
1/2 cup coconut oil

Preheat oven at 375F. Grease or line with wax paper 2 - 8x6 pans with coconut oil or any pan that can hold at least 1/2 inch thick of the bibingka mixture.

Mix all dry ingredients and wet ingredients in separate mixing bowls. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry while whisking. Pour mixture in the pans. Place the pans in the oven for 30-45 minutes depending on the thickness of your cake. Remove the cake from the oven when it is slightly brown and formed. Increase the oven heat to 400F. Pour the custard (see below) on the cake, spread it evenly, then sprinkle some cinnamon and coconut sugar on top. Place back in the oven for about 10 minutes or until the custard is slightly brown on top. Remove from heat and let it cool for a few hours before cutting. Garnish with coconut chips.

Custard
1/4 cup coconut milk or cream
2 eggs
1/2 cup honey
A pinch of salt
1/4 tsp vanilla

In a medium saucepan bring about 2 cups of water to boil. Using a medium stainless steel mixing bowl, mix all the ingredients above. Then place the bowl on top of the saucepan to create a double broiler effect. Keep whisking the mixture until it turns into a custard. Remove from heat.

Topping
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp raw coconut sugar (from Whole Foods)
Roasted coconut chips (from Trader Joes)

#Chicken #pesto #salad stuffed in bellpepper. This required no cooking at all. I just used some left over roasted chicken and made a quick pesto sauce without the cheese. Yum! #paleo #primal #paleoporn #paleohunt #hashtagpaleo #eatclean #cleaneating #healthy #healthyfood #fitness

#Chicken #pesto #salad stuffed in bellpepper. This required no cooking at all. I just used some left over roasted chicken and made a quick pesto sauce without the cheese. Yum! #paleo #primal #paleoporn #paleohunt #hashtagpaleo #eatclean #cleaneating #healthy #healthyfood #fitness

#Paleo #Korean #pork #bulgogi on #avocado cups topped with pickled radish and kimchi. #primal #eatclean #cleaneating #healthy #bbq #homemade #healthyfood #hashtagpaleo #paleoporn #paleohunt #foodgasm #foodporn

#Paleo #Korean #pork #bulgogi on #avocado cups topped with pickled radish and kimchi. #primal #eatclean #cleaneating #healthy #bbq #homemade #healthyfood #hashtagpaleo #paleoporn #paleohunt #foodgasm #foodporn

Melt in your mouth Paleo Chocolate Peppermint Ganache Cupcakes

Chocolate Cupcakes

1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup melted grassfed butter or coconut oil
3 eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 & 1/2 cups almond meal
1/2 cup melted paleo approved chocolate chips (I might have added more, hence the super moist and melt in your mouth texture.)
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Combine the dry  ingredients and wet ingredients separately then slowly incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet.  Blend well.

Preheat oven to 350 F. 
Pour about 1/4 cup of the mixture into each muffin cup. 
Bake for 15- 20 minutes until the middle of the cupcake is cooked. (Stick a toothpick in the middle of the cupcake,  if it comes out clean, it’s ready.) Makes  about 8 standard size cupcakes. Let it cool on a rack. 

Coconut Cream Filling

1 cup coconut cream
1/2 cup raw organic honey
pinch salt
5 teaspoons arrowroot powder
2 tbsp water
1¼ cup coconut oil

In a small pot, heat coconut cream, honey and salt, simmer for 10 minutes. Mix arrowroot and water in a small bowl to dilute the arrowroot. Pour arrowroot mixture into pot. 
Mix contents of pot with a hand blender. Whisk vigorously to combine, then bring to a boil, briefly, until shiny. 
Remove pot from heat and very gradually blend in coconut oil with a hand blender
Allow pot to cool for 10 minutes. Set aside about 1/4 - 1/2 cup for the ganache. 
Place pot in freezer for 2 hours, until frosting solidifies and turns white.
Remove from freezer and blend again with a hand blender, until fluffy. 

Peppermint Chocolate Ganache

1 & 1/4 cup paleo approved chocolate chips 
1/4 to 1/2 cup of the above coconut cream filling 
A few tbsp of raw honey if preferred or if the chocolate chips are unsweetened 
1/2 tsp peppermint extract from Trader Joe’s

This recipe will tell you how to make both the peppermint chocolate chips and ganache. I don’t have a double broiler so I used a dry stainless steel bowl over a saucepan with boiling water to create the same effect. Melt the chocolate chips on the stainless steel bowl. 
Add the peppermint extract after its fully melted. Taste the mixture, add more peppermint extract if needed. Add a little at a time until you get your preferred taste.

Peppermint Chocolate Chips: In a small silicone mold, pour about 1/4 cup of the melted peppermint chocolate. Place in the freezer for about 1 hour to form.  Remove from the mold then cut in small pieces to make chocolate chips. Place back in the refrigerator to prevent melting.

Ganache: Add the coconut cream mixture to remainder of the melted chocolate while still heating on the double broiler. Add the honey if necessary. Mix until the coconut cream incorporates. Let it cool at room temperature before frosting. 

To put everything together, core the middle of the cupcake for the filling. Use a ziploc bag, spoon in the filling, seal, then cut a small hole on the edge. Squeeze the filling into the cupcake.  Using a small spatula, frost the cupcake with the chocolate ganache.  Top it with the peppermint chocolate chips. 

NOTE: If you do not like the taste of the coconut cream filling with peppermint, you can bypass the coconut cream filling and just use the ganache to fill the cupcakes. Or you can just make it without the peppermint extract altogether and it will still be heaven!

Melt in your mouth Paleo Chocolate Peppermint Ganache Cupcakes

Chocolate Cupcakes

1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup melted grassfed butter or coconut oil
3 eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 & 1/2 cups almond meal
1/2 cup melted paleo approved chocolate chips (I might have added more, hence the super moist and melt in your mouth texture.)
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Combine the dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately then slowly incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet. Blend well.

Preheat oven to 350 F.
Pour about 1/4 cup of the mixture into each muffin cup.
Bake for 15- 20 minutes until the middle of the cupcake is cooked. (Stick a toothpick in the middle of the cupcake, if it comes out clean, it’s ready.) Makes about 8 standard size cupcakes. Let it cool on a rack.

Coconut Cream Filling

1 cup coconut cream
1/2 cup raw organic honey
pinch salt
5 teaspoons arrowroot powder
2 tbsp water
1¼ cup coconut oil

In a small pot, heat coconut cream, honey and salt, simmer for 10 minutes. Mix arrowroot and water in a small bowl to dilute the arrowroot. Pour arrowroot mixture into pot.
Mix contents of pot with a hand blender. Whisk vigorously to combine, then bring to a boil, briefly, until shiny.
Remove pot from heat and very gradually blend in coconut oil with a hand blender
Allow pot to cool for 10 minutes. Set aside about 1/4 - 1/2 cup for the ganache.
Place pot in freezer for 2 hours, until frosting solidifies and turns white.
Remove from freezer and blend again with a hand blender, until fluffy.

Peppermint Chocolate Ganache

1 & 1/4 cup paleo approved chocolate chips
1/4 to 1/2 cup of the above coconut cream filling
A few tbsp of raw honey if preferred or if the chocolate chips are unsweetened
1/2 tsp peppermint extract from Trader Joe’s

This recipe will tell you how to make both the peppermint chocolate chips and ganache. I don’t have a double broiler so I used a dry stainless steel bowl over a saucepan with boiling water to create the same effect. Melt the chocolate chips on the stainless steel bowl.
Add the peppermint extract after its fully melted. Taste the mixture, add more peppermint extract if needed. Add a little at a time until you get your preferred taste.

Peppermint Chocolate Chips: In a small silicone mold, pour about 1/4 cup of the melted peppermint chocolate. Place in the freezer for about 1 hour to form. Remove from the mold then cut in small pieces to make chocolate chips. Place back in the refrigerator to prevent melting.

Ganache: Add the coconut cream mixture to remainder of the melted chocolate while still heating on the double broiler. Add the honey if necessary. Mix until the coconut cream incorporates. Let it cool at room temperature before frosting.

To put everything together, core the middle of the cupcake for the filling. Use a ziploc bag, spoon in the filling, seal, then cut a small hole on the edge. Squeeze the filling into the cupcake. Using a small spatula, frost the cupcake with the chocolate ganache. Top it with the peppermint chocolate chips.

NOTE: If you do not like the taste of the coconut cream filling with peppermint, you can bypass the coconut cream filling and just use the ganache to fill the cupcakes. Or you can just make it without the peppermint extract altogether and it will still be heaven!

No Bake Paleo Cashew Blueberry Cheesecake 

I based this recipe from http://www.tgipaleo.com/2012/08/08/cashew-cream-cheesecake/
Although I tweaked it a little bit by not measuring my ingredients (just doing it by flavor), and adding Kerrygold butter instead of coconut oil for less of the coconut taste. The crust was made from pecans, almond meal, butter and raw honey. The filling was soaked raw cashews, coconut cream, Kerrygold butter, fresh lemon juice, raw honey and a pinch of salt. I made blueberry jelly from organic blueberries, raw honey and a pinch of salt, heated and brought to low boil for 5 mins. I then added arrowroot powder mixed with a little water to thicken the jelly. I then used silicone muffin pans for mini servings instead of springform pans.

No Bake Paleo Cashew Blueberry Cheesecake

I based this recipe from http://www.tgipaleo.com/2012/08/08/cashew-cream-cheesecake/
Although I tweaked it a little bit by not measuring my ingredients (just doing it by flavor), and adding Kerrygold butter instead of coconut oil for less of the coconut taste. The crust was made from pecans, almond meal, butter and raw honey. The filling was soaked raw cashews, coconut cream, Kerrygold butter, fresh lemon juice, raw honey and a pinch of salt. I made blueberry jelly from organic blueberries, raw honey and a pinch of salt, heated and brought to low boil for 5 mins. I then added arrowroot powder mixed with a little water to thicken the jelly. I then used silicone muffin pans for mini servings instead of springform pans.

Had an awesome #sashimi #dinner.  (at Sung Bak Sa Sushi)

Had an awesome #sashimi #dinner. (at Sung Bak Sa Sushi)

Paleo Red Velvet Cake

I made this cake for Holly’s birthday. She’s the owner and coach of Pink Iron and one of the most amazing people I know. It was my first time making a red velvet cake (her favorite) not to mention the challenge of making it paleo. I’m glad it turned out good.

Cake
1/2 cup raw organic honey
1/2 cup softened grassfed butter
3 free range eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups blanched almond flour
2 puréed red beets approx 1 cup (see below)
2 tbsp raw cacao powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Steam two to three red beets for about 45 minutes or until it’s fully cooked. To test it, insert a fork in a beet. If it goes through easily, it’s done. Peel the beets. Cut them into small pieces for easy purée. Transfer in food processor or blender. I added about 2-4 tbsp of butter instead of water for easy blending and less watery consistency. Keep blending until its completely puréed.

Preheat oven to 350F.
Combine all ingredients and mix well.

Line with wax paper and grease the bottom of two 8x8 cake pans.
Spread a layer of dough on the two cake pans about 1 inch thick.

Bake for 15 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean after inserted in the middle of the cake. Let it cool before frosting.

Buttercream Frosting

1/2 cup raw organic honey (get the thick kind)
2 cups unsalted butter (grassfed)
1 tsp vanilla extract

Using a mixer, whisk the butter continuously until it forms firm peaks. Drizzle the honey while whisking then add the vanilla. Consider adding some cashew cream cheese. Blend them together for a yummy frosting.

Cashew Cream Cheese

1 cup raw cashew soaked for at least 4 hours or overnight
2-3 tbsp water
2 tsp apple cider
1/4 tsp lemon grind
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp salt

Place the soaked cashews (water removed) in a food processor. Add about 2 tbsp water then purée. You may need to scrape the sides every now and then to ensure all the nuts are puréed. When it turns to a paste add the rest of the ingredients then blend.

* Place a cake on a cake plate. Spread a thick layer of frosting on top. You may add slices of strawberries like I did. Add a little more frosting before placing the second layer of cake. Spread a layer of frosting on top and the sides of the cake making sure its even. Place the cake in the freezer to set the frosting before adding a second and/or third layer of frosting.
You can decorate the cake like I did with edible flowers and wrapped around homemade chocolate sculpture.