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This brussels sprout salad was inspired by Nancy Silverton and is served chef at Osteria Mozza. I love this salad and while I have blatantly stolen it and modified it, I also promise to always give her full credit for creating this salad. I would be hard pressed to name a chef that takes salads as seriously as chef Nancy and her loving attention shows. Roasting nuts in their own oil is another thing that I learned from Nancy and these almonds are truly spectacular. Give this salad a go at your next meal and trust that even the most die hard Brussels sprout hater may be brought over to the other side.
1 C fresh raw Brussels sprouts
3 T chopped fresh mint
2 T chopped tarragon
2 T chopped chives
1/3 C chopped almonds
1T walnut oil
1 T olive oil
2 T lemon juice
¼ T lemon zest
1/4 tsp sea salt
Toast almonds for 12-15 minutes at 400 degrees, then toss your almonds in the almond oil and sea salt and, allow to cool then roughly chop. Very very carefully shred the Brussels sprouts on a mandoline. If you do not have a mandolin, cut them in half from top to stem then slice thinly into shreds. You could also use the slicing blade on a food processor if you have one. Juice your lemon, finely chop your mint, tarragon, & chives. Then add all ingredients, except the almonds, to a large bowl. Toss together and pile the salad on a platter, topping it with the chopped toasted almonds.
There is a pink pepper tree on my dear friend Sarah’s back porch. The few hours I have spent picking and sorting the peppercorns from the twigs and leaves have been well worth the effort, as this little pepper freak can’t get enough of the stuff. I like to grind the peppercorns in the food processor and save it in a little jar to have on hand for when pork shoulder goes on sale.
Pork shoulder, pork butt, or picnic cut is what I’m talking about. This cut of meat is tasty and takes to this slow cooking method in the same way it takes to the pink peppercorn rub.
I suggest you make extras, as the leftovers are worthy of the recipe itself. It takes a little time but most of it is hands off. If you buy a nice fatty cut you will end up with a good amount of rendered creamy lard that will solidify as it cools and can be reserved and used to sauté up some veggies at other time or can be used to schmear on some sourdough bread.
Pink Peppercorn Pork Shoulder
3lb piece of pork shoulder, nice and fatty
1/4 C pink peppercorns, ground
3T sea salt
2 cups chicken bone broth
5 bay leaves
Mix the sea salt and the pink peppercorns together and rub over pork shoulder. Ideally this can be done the night before you intend to cook the pork but if time is of the essence rub the shoulder and let it rest at least 30 minutes at room temperature. Pre-heat the oven to 325°.
In a casserole dish just large enough to snugly hold the pork, add the shoulder, the broth and the bay leaves. This is not a braise in a sense that the pork should be swimming in broth, so if only a cup of the broth fits in your pan use that and top it up as it cooks.
Cook the pork for 2-2.5 hours at 325, turning the roast every 30 minutes. This allows it to evenly brown and results in a super juicy cut of meat.
When fully cooked the roast will be tender but not falling apart, resulting in a sliceable roast. The broth will reduce a little as it cooks but ideally allow the roast to rest for 15 minutes before slicing and further reduce broth until desired consistency: I like it on the thinner side but you can bring it all the way down into a syrupy glaze. Taste before adding any additional salt, as the salt from the roast has seasoned the broth.
I am officially over pumpkin spice everything but even during these times of severe pumpkin abuse, I just cannot resist making a few pumpkin desserts, like this delicious pumpkin custard. While I could house an entire pumpkin pie and call Thanksgiving done and dusted, in honor of Revivalist Kitchen this recipe was created to feature a not over sweetened, reasonably spiced dessert that is the perfect end to a rich meal but with the liberal use of farm fresh eggs, a slightly larger portion could be a nutritious and satisfying cap on a lighter meal. Featuring fresh roasted pumpkin, creamy naturally sweet raw whipped cream and spiced pumpkin seeds; this pumpkin custard will make a beautiful addition to your holiday table. We featured this desert at our Harvest Dinner. Read all bout what we served up here!
2 cups pumpkin puree
1/2 Cup Coconut Sugar
1 T Molasses
1 Tsp fresh grated nutmeg
1 Tsp fresh grated cinnamon
1 Tsp vanilla, scraped from vanilla bean
1/2 Cup Milk or if Paleo use coconut Milk
1/4 tsp Sea Salt
Roast the pumpkins in 350° oven until soft. Scoop out flesh, reserving seeds to be toasted and blend all ingredients in food processor, except for eggs. Pour blended mixture into heavy bottom saucepan over medium heat. Taste for seasoning and turn off heat once mixture is at a simmer. Off the heat whisk in the eggs one at a time and then bring the mixture back up to a simmer. Pour into individual serving vessels and chill in refrigerator. Top custard with raw whipped cream and the toasted spiced pumpkin seeds.
Toasted spiced pumpkin seeds
1 C pumpkin seeds, rinsed
1 2 T coconut sugar
1/4 tsp each cinnamon & nutmeg
2T melted butter
1 tsp sea salt
Pre-heat the oven to 300°. Mix together all ingredients except seeds, once mixed, toss in pumpkin seeds. Spread seeds over a baking sheet and bake. You will want to stir the seeds every five minutes and bake until crispy. This process takes about 25-35 minutes.
Some of my most vivid memories from childhood storybooks are food related. I’ve always been particularly fascinated by the seemingly ubiquitous pink layer cake with a berry or cherry or whatever on top. Strawberry Shortcake, the book about the school teacher elephant who lives the good life in her classroom, after hours, has a particularly inspiring bathtub tea party picture that as I recall featured pink cakes.
This year my birthday falls on a Friday and I teach a 10:15am spin class in Silverlake. As bribery to my friends and students for coming out to ride with me for my birthday class, I used the fantasy cake from my childhood to create a tasty example of 80/20. The cupcakes are a sweet treat but not junk food and the pink comes in the form of my personal favorite: cream cheese frosting. As an adult who is very into fitness and wanted a cupcake I felt good about feeding to a room full of people after they just exercised for 45 minutes, I kept away from some of the higher glycemic ingredients: refined wheat flour & white sugar. Coconut came to the rescue here and gave the cake a nice fluffy texture while providing protein & fat. A whole bunch of eggs boost the protein content and give the cupcakes some serious richness and contribute to their golden color.
Birthday Cupcakes with Pink Frosting *grain free, dairy free*
3/4 Cup Coconut flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp vanilla powder
1 cup coconut sugar
1/4 cup coconut oil
9 large eggs
Pre-Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a blender, pulverize the coconut sugar until fine. If coconut oil is solid, gently warm until liquid, but not hot. I found this super easy to do with two mixing bowls and a hand mixer, but a stand mixer would also work. If you are looking for an upper body workout, you could do it by hand.
Whip the coconut oil and pulverize coconut sugar until combined. Break all the eggs together and mix into the coconut oil and sugar, one at a time to incorporate each egg. When all the eggs are added, blend until creamy. Sift the coconut flour into another bowl and add the salt, vanilla & baking soda. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and blend. Line a cupcake pan with undyed parchment muffin liners and scoop in 1/4 C of the batter to each one, an ice-cream scoop works well for this. Conveniently this recipe makes 12 cupcakes. Bake the cupcakes for 20 minutes. Set your oven timer for 10 minutes. After 10, turn the tray in the oven, keeping on the same oven sheet and bake another 10 minutes. Ovens vary, but after the first 10 minutes the cupcakes should be firming up and lightly browning at the edges. The middles will still be kinda soupy. After the pan rotation and 10 more minutes the cupcakes will be just cooked and not dry or heavy. Do not over-bake! Use the timer. Or they will suck. Allow all cupcakes to fully cool before attempting to frost. Cupcakes can be frozen but will dry out a bit. I plan to leave them to cool and store on the counter overnight, unfrosted and have zero leftovers as I only made 12.
Pink Strawberry Frosting
1.2 oz freeze dried unsweetened strawberries
1/4 C Coconut Sugar
2 blocks full fat cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 to 1 C heavy cream (start with 1/4 C increase in incremeants until consistency is acheived)
One at a time pulverize the strawberries and coconut sugar in a blender until fine. Beware of breathing in a strawberry and/or coconut sugar dust cloud when opening lid. In a deep bowl whip together the strawberry powder, fine coconut sugar and cream cheese. This may make a tiny mess but don’t sweat it. Thin the mixture with the cream and it will also help keep your frosting in the bowl. Whip it up until it’s fluffy. Boom! Pink frosting for any occasion.
My husband loves very few things more than an avocado and I must admit the man has excellent taste. Avocado Popsicles is a great way to use up avocados that are on their way out (rarely happens around here as they just don’t last) but more importantly, these frozen pops keep perfectly well in in the freezer (I’d use within a month for maximum taste). Other than this, I just don’t know many other ways to store avocados for more than a few days.
This recipe was created after I catered a graduation party with a menu inspired by Mexico and I was left with nearly half a case of very ripe avocados and a quart of fresh squeezed lime juice. Guacamole is not the kind of dish that improves (or gets any prettier) with time and while I have read countless recipes for avocado soup I remain firmly unconvinced. Probably for the best as these avocado-pops are a nutritious way to cool down on a hot day and no matter the weather, these treats are not gonna knock you off your wagon or program if you happen to be on one.
Stevia is my zero glycemic load sugar replacement of choice: it’s from a plant not made in one and I find the taste satisfying as long as it’s used with a light hand. I prefer natural sweetners on the regular for flavor reasons and I do not mind the extra energy in the form of calories in the least, most of the time. However, sometimes I want to trim up a bit and when on the first stage of the BFF Diet, theses popcicles will taste like tasty cool squares of bright green heaven.
3 Ripe Avocados, medium size
1/2 Cup Coconut Oil
3/4 Cup Lime Juice
1/2 Cup Pure Clean Water
1 1/2 Tbs. Stevia
1/4 C Chopped Mint
Pinch of Sea Salt
Blend all ingredients together until smooth. Taste for sweetness, the pops will taste less sweet when frozen, so you may want to add up to 1/2 teaspoon more stevia. This nutrient dense mixture will be thick and result in a hard pop when frozen. If you prefer a lighter texture (it will also make the molds easier to fill) you can thin the mixture with more water or even coconut water for added electrolytes.
Freeze mixture in popsicle molds if you have them, if not paper cups and plastic spoons frozen in as the stick, work just fine. A quick dunk under running hot water will make the avocado-pops easier to unmold. These are best enjoyed anytime you are looking for a little something something to make your day just a little bit brighter.