Sunday, February 22, 2015

Plantain Chip Chicken (AIP & Paleo)

Plantain Chip Chicken (AIP & Paleo)

Plantain Chip Chicken (AIP & Paleo)

Plantain Chip Chicken (AIP & Paleo)

Plantain Chip Chicken (AIP & Paleo)

Plantain Chip Chicken (AIP & Paleo)

Plantain Chip Chicken (AIP & Paleo)

Plantain Chip Chicken (AIP & Paleo)

One day, as I was eating my way through a bag of plantain chips (one of my very favorite AIP snacks), I was inspired by all the crumbs that are inevitably found at the bottom of the bag. Why not crush lots of plantain chips & use them to coat chicken pieces?!? My husband grew up on shake-and-bake, so I knew he’d be on board with the idea, especially if I added a few tasty seasonings to the crushed chips. This recipe just might be in both our lists of favorite AIP main dish options.

Most fried chicken recipes involve dipping the chicken pieces first in either an egg or milk-based mixture and then dipping it in a breading mixture. But, since neither eggs nor dairy work with AIP, I took a gamble and instead just coated the chicken pieces lightly in avocado oil before gently pressing in the plantain chip crumbs. I also took the easier route & baked the chicken instead of messing with deep frying. By baking the chicken at a high temperature on top of a rack (on a baking sheet), the entire crust is able to stay nice and crispy. Not quite as crispy as deep fried chicken, but still oh so delicious & satisfying. Since I first concocted this recipe earlier in February, we’ve eaten it almost every week! And I don’t see it leaving our meal rotation anytime soon.

Plantain Chip Chicken (AIP & Paleo)

Plantain chip crusted chicken
Yields 2-4 servings, depending on appetite  

One 4 oz package Plantain Chips (make sure the ingredients are just plantains, palm oil, and salt) 
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp sea salt

1 Tbl Oil (I used avocado , but olive would also work)
between 1.25 and 1.5 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 F. Place a cooling rack in a rimmed baking sheet. 
  2. Pulverize the plantain chips, garlic, onion & salt in a food processor until the chips are crumbs. 
  3. Lightly coat the chicken pieces in the oil. Coat with the plantain crumb mixture & place onto the prepared rack.  Sprinkle any remaining crumbs over the chicken, or discard them. 
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a thermometer inserted into the biggest chicken piece reads 165 F. If they do not seem crispy enough for your preferences, place the pan under the broiler for 1 to 2 minutes right before serving.
This post contains affiliate links. Thanks for supporting Sweet Treats. 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Blood Orange Gummies with Kombucha (AIP)

Blood Orange Gummies with Kombucha (AIP)

Blood Orange Gummies with Kombucha (AIP)

Usually Valentine’s day is filled with indulgences like copious amounts sweets & decadent meals, but we’re going a different route this year. Husband had a sinus procedure yesterday, so we’re in recovery mode for the next several days, making sure he fully heals as quickly and as painlessly as possible.

Blood Orange Gummies with Kombucha (AIP)

Blood Orange Gummies with Kombucha (AIP)

We are hopeful that our paleo habits will help his healing process, but just to make sure, I’m incorporating extra nutrient dense foods into his diet.  I’ll still be cooking a special Valentine’s dinner of braised beef short ribs (this recipe is one of my favorites, just omit the tomato paste & black pepper to make it AIP), but we’ll also be eating more grassfed gelatin in things like these gummies and also in panna cotta, incorporating extra collagen into smoothies & into an upped intake of homemade broths, increasing protein portions, eating more offal (like chicken liver pâté) and seafood, & drinking extra kombucha for the probiotic properties.

Blood Orange Gummies with Kombucha (AIP)

Blood Orange Gummies with Kombucha (AIP)

These blood orange gummies with kombucha pack a lot of good nutrients into each piece. They’ve got both the protein/amino acids found in gelatin & the good probiotics (especially excellent for replenishing after antibiotic usage) found in Kombucha. They’re slightly sweet, but not overly sugary. By leaving in the pulp in with the juice, they’re slightly reminiscent of marmalade & a bit more fiber-rich than traditional juice gummies. Because it’s Valentine’s Day & I already had the perfect mold, I made these gummies heart shaped. But certainly any other shape could be made, or they could be cut into squares.


Blood Orange Gummies with Kombucha

1 c (220 g) Blood Orange Juice/Pulp--approximately 2.5 medium blood oranges
4 Tbl (28 g) Grass Fed gelatin (red can)
2 Tbl (42 g) Honey
1 c Blood Orange Kombucha (I like this brand best)

  1. Remove the kombucha from the fridge and allow it to come to room temperature. Peel the blood oranges & divide into sections. Place into a high speed blender and puree. Measure out 1 cup or 220 g. 
  2. Pour the juice/pulp into a small saucepan. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top. Whisk to combine & allow to bloom for 5 minutes. 
  3. Add the honey to the bloomed juice & heat over medium heat , whisking constantly, until the mixture just warms & liquifies.  Remove from the heat and allow to cool down to body temperature--about 10 minutes.
  4. Whisk in the kombucha & transfer the mixture to a vessel with a spout for easier pouring. Portion into small silicone molds (place onto a plate or pan before pouring in the liquid for easy transport). Any leftover liquid can be poured into a glass dish or into ramekins. 
  5. Refrigerate the molds/dish until firm, approximately 1-2 hrs. Gently, pop the gummies out of the silicone molds, or cut them into shapes. Store in the refrigerator.
Note: If you do not have access to blood orange kombucha, feel free to sub another flavor (ginger might be nice) or simply double the amount of blood orange juice. 

This post contains affiliate links. Thanks for supporting Sweet Treats. 

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Roasted Broccoli (AIP, Paleo & Vegan)

Roasted Broccoli (AIP & Paleo)

So, this roasted broccoli is one of those recipes that I hesitate in sharing because it is SO easy. Does it actually need a recipe?!?  But its also one of my favorite side dishes and I’d hate for someone to go through life not experiencing the wonderfully delicious & easy dish that this roasted broccoli is. 

Roasted Broccoli (AIP & Paleo)

Cooking things completely from scratch isn’t always easy. There’s often lots of chopping and prepping of ingredients, and then there’s also the cooking part, and of course, the cleaning up.  But this broccoli is different. It’s easy. No chopping. It requires only one pan & almost no hands on time. Did I mention also that it’s economical because it turns out better with the cheaper broccoli cuts, rather than the more expensive florets. I like to roast mine until it’s almost burned. And then husband and I fight over the crispy, caramelized, charred bits on the pan.

Roasted Broccoli (AIP & Paleo)
Before and after roasting; it will shrink quite a bit

One word of caution.... once you start eating roasted broccoli, it is very difficult to go back to eating any other form. Steamed broccoli has NOTHING on roasted ;)


Roasted Broccoli
makes 2 servings 

2 lbs of frozen broccoli cuts, organic preferred 
4 Tbl Avocado Oil, divided into 1 Tbl and 3 Tbls
           (or substitute another liquid fat of choice, such as olive, or melted lard/bacon grease/duck fat) 
1 tsp Sea Salt or Himalayan salt (we like things a little on the salty side, so use less if you aren’t a big salt fan). 
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 F (or 375 F on a convection oven). 
  2. Grease a rimmed baking sheet with 1 tablespoon of oil.
  3. Open the frozen broccoli cuts & spread onto  the baking sheet. Drizzle on the remaining 3 Tbl of oil & the salt. Toss to combine.
  4. Roast in the preheated oven for 25 minutes, then remove the pan from the oven, toss the broccoli to ensure it isn’t sticking and that it isn’t getting too dark. Return the pan to the oven to roast an additional 20 to 25 minutes. 
  5. Serve immediately.  

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Chicken, Bacon, Kale & Spaghetti Squash Hash (AIP)

Chicken, Bacon, Kale & Spaghetti Squash Hash (AIP)

“Laura, will you ever be able to eat normal food again?” was a question my Grandma Vein asked when I was back in North Dakota in January. Very good question, Grandma.

I know it is so hard for Grandma (and for other friends and family members) to understand my health challenges & the journey that has lead me to following the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP).

Chicken, Bacon, Kale & Spaghetti Squash Hash (AIP)

Chicken, Bacon, Kale & Spaghetti Squash Hash (AIP)

Yes, I will freely admit that even after months and months on AIP, including some successful reintroductions, I do occasionally mourn the food I cannot eat. But instead of dwelling on what I can’t eat, I find it better to concentrate on what I can eat. I can eat lots and lots of delicious foods! Rarely do I feel deprived after eating a good AIP meal at home or with family/friends. There is something empowering about eating tasty food that is also going to be beneficial to your health. Though, yes, there are times I wish I could eat “normal” foods, like pasta & pizza & cereal...... AIP isn’t meant to last forever, but given my particular AI diagnosis’s, there are certain foods my body may not ever tolerate.

Chicken, Bacon, Kale & Spaghetti Squash Hash (AIP)

Thankfully, there are a few other AIP bloggers who have concocted AIP pizzas & cereals (I’ve tried this stromboli recipe (yum!), but also have been eyeing this one, and this one, and this one). And I created this spaghetti squash hash, which really does remind me of pasta, but isn’t going give me horrible symptoms for days on end which would make me regret eating it.

Chicken, Bacon, Kale & Spaghetti Squash Hash (AIP)

Chicken, Bacon & Kale Spaghetti Squash Hash
yields 2-4 servings, depending on how hungry you are 

3 Strips of Bacon
1.15 lb Chicken Thighs
Sea Salt
2 Onions, sliced
5 c (100 g) Kale, ribs removed & chopped
3 c (325 g) Cooked Spaghetti Squash strands (see this post for spaghetti squash cooking instructions)

Smoked Sea Salt, for serving

  1. In a cast-iron skillet fry the bacon over medium high heat, flipping as necessary. When the bacon is golden, remove from the pan & reserve for garnish at the end. Leave the drippings in the pan. 
  2. Sprinkle the chicken thighs with salt & sauté them in the bacon drippings until they reach an internal temperature of 165 F. Transfer the cooked chicken thighs to a cutting board. 
  3. In the same pan, with the drippings from the bacon & chicken, caramelize the onions over low heat, stirring occasionally. This process may take more than 20 minutes. 
  4. Once the onions are golden brown, increase the heat to medium low and add the chopped kale & cook, stirring occasionally, until the kale wilts slightly. Meanwhile, chop up the cooked chicken thighs. Add the spaghetti squash to the skillet.  Toss to combine. 
  5. Add the chicken pieces & continue to cook until heated through. Portion onto plates Chop the cooked bacon & sprinkle, along with some smoked salt (or other pink or sea salt) and serve. 
  6. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator or freeze for longevity. 


This post contains affiliate links. Thanks for supporting Sweet Treats! 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Grapefruit & Avocado Kale Salad (AIP)

Grapefruit & Avocado Kale Salad (AIP)

I had intended to share this recipe back in December, but alas that never happened, due in part to some unexpected circumstances like the video card on my computer dying right in the middle of working on this post & some further health flare ups & the loss of a family member. I’m trying to get back to “normal” life, catching up with the recipes & posts I’d previously planned on sharing, such as this salad.

Grapefruit & Avocado Kale Salad (AIP)

It’s a bit cliche to share a salad in January, I know, but whether or not you’re trying to make more health conscious decisions, this salad combination is delicious, easy & really good for you. It is one of my all-time favorites, even from my pre-AIP days. While I’ve been known to eat this salad any time of the year, it’s especially good when citrus fruits are in season. Once the organic Texas ruby red grapefruits began appearing in the grocery stores in late November, this salad has been in heavy rotation.  We’ll eat it as a side to a more main course item, or I’ll top it with some seared ahi tuna (or even wild-caught canned tuna) and it becomes the main course on it’s own.  If I don’t have kale on hand, I’ve also used arugula or spring mix instead, but I do like how sturdy the kale is & how it provides a little extra crunch.  

Grapefruit & Avocado Kale Salad (AIP)

Also, don’t skimp on the grapefruit vinaigrette. It’s a refreshing dressing that not only ensures all the residual grapefruit juice/pulp gets utilized, but also breaks out of the realm of my “regular” vinaigrettes (such as red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar).

Grapefruit & Avocado Kale Salad (AIP)

Grapefruit & Avocado Kale Salad
serves 2

3 heaping cups of chopped Kale, ribs removed (or substitute other greens like Arugula)
3 Tbl Grapefruit Vinaigrette, recipe follows
Sea Salt, to taste
1 Avocado, sliced
1 grapefruit, sectioned, reserving the remaining juice (for a tutorial, see this Steller Story I created)

  1.  In a large bowl, toss together the kale with the vinaigrette, “massaging” the dressing into the kale until well coated. 
  2. Top with sliced avocado & grapefruit sections. 
  3. Taste & adjust salt, as needed. 
  4. Serve immediately, or cover & refrigerate to serve later. Note: wait to slice/add avocado if not serving the salad immediately. 

Grapefruit Vinaigrette
1/4 c Grapefruit Juice, squeezed from the juice left after sectioning the grapefruit (see above)
1/4 c Avocado Oil (or substitute Olive Oil)
2 tsp chopped shallot (approximately 6 g by weight)
1/4 tsp Sea Salt

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a glass measuring cup or high speed blender. Blend together, either using an immersion blender or the high speed blender. 
  2. Use in the grapefruit & avocado salad. Place any leftovers into a glass mason jar, cover & store in the refrigerator. Shake before serving. 


This post contains affiliate links. Thanks for supporting Sweet Treats.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Sweet Potato Lefse (AIP)


Chances are, unless you grew up somewhere with a large Scandinavian population, you’ve possibly never heard of lefse. If that’s the case, it’s ok, I won’t hold it against you :) Lefse is a potato flatbread cooked on a griddle. Think of it like a scandinavian tortilla. It remains very flexible after cooking and is usually spread with butter (and sometimes sprinkled with white sugar) before it is rolled up into tubes and eaten.


I grew up eating lots of lefse, especially at Thanksgiving & christmas time, but never making it.  Every lefse recipe is a little bit different & many families are staunch traditionalists when it comes to “their” family recipe. Families will gather together sometime during the holiday season and spend an afternoon making loads and loads of lefse. Most versions include white potatoes, butter, dairy of some sort (cream, milk, etc), salt, sugar, and flour. My good friend Kelli & her family make lots of lefse each year & I’m very thankful she consulted on this recipe with me :)


To be honest, neither Kelli nor I were very confident that an AIP version of lefsewas possible. It was a tall order, since I needed to find AIP appropriate substitutions for every ingredient, minus the salt. The salt was fine, haha. But, the thought of having to go yet another year without lefse was a hard thing for me. In past years I’ve had to skip out on the lefse because it isn’t gluten free. This year, I felt like I should at least attempt a version, even if it didn’t taste or look exactly like traditional lefse.


The first order was to find a substitute for the white potatoes. Though I’ve been able to tolerate reintroductions of some things to my AIP diet, white potatoes, a member of the nightshade family, are not one of them... Instead, these days, I eat a lot of sweet potatoes, in different varieties.  Funny, prior to AIP, I had no idea there even were different varieties and colors of sweet potatoes. Hands down, my favorite kind is the white sweet potato, the Hannah variety, because it is a little less sweet & a little more starchy in texture.



I’m not sure if it was a good thing or not that I’ve never actually made homemade lefse before this adventure. From what I can tell, and I am most definitely not an expert, the rules for this AIP lefse are very different from it’s traditional counterpart. I’m not entirely sure how this AIP lefse works, but it just does :) And for that I am very thankful. Traditional lefse can be quite finicky and require an experienced touch. This lefse is more forgiving. I’ve made a couple batches, just to try to troubleshoot any challenges & to ensure that my first recipe success wasn’t just a fluke. The dough is more forgiving & doesn’t require as delicate a touch. Because it doesn’t contain gluten, you don’t need to worry about overworking it when mixing the dough & rolling it out.  It’s best mixed, rolled & cooked all in one day, but I find that it tastes more lefse-esque the day after it’s been made.


If you’re someone who is missing lefse because you’re following Paleo or AIP or are gluten free, I hope this recipe will be a great resource for you. Traditionally, I’ve really only eaten lefse during the holiday season, but given the reality that my “bread” choices are pretty non-existant, I forsee us making this recipe often & using the flatbread in a similar manner as tortillas.


Sweet Potato Lefse
yields approximately 16 small pieces 

14 oz White Sweet Potatoes (I used the “Hannah” variety)
Water, to cover

12 oz Riced White Sweet Potatoes
2 Tbl (22 g) coconut milk
28 g (2 Tbl) coconut oil
3/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp Maple Sugar
90 g Tapioca Starch, divided approximately in half
1 1/2 tsp Coconut Flour

a lot additional Tapioca starch for dusting

  1. Wash & peel the sweet potatoes. Cut them into rough cubes & place into a stock pot. Add enough water to cover the potato pieces. 
  2. Bring to a boil over high heat & cook until fork tender, approximately 20 minutes. 
  3. Drain the potatoes into a colander. 
  4. Rice the potatoes back into the stock pot, using a potato ricer  Return to the burner over low heat & cook, stirring constantly, for 1.5 minutes, to help evaporate some of the residual water. 
  5. Remove from the heat & add the coconut milk, coconut oil, salt & maple sugar. Stir to combine. 
  6. Add half the tapioca starch & the coconut flour. Mix well. Add the remaining tapioca starch. 
  7. Divide the dough into 2 Tbl pieces. Roll into small balls. 
  8. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat. 
  9. Liberally sprinkle the work surface with additional tapioca starch. Flatten a ball of dough & sprinkle with more tapioca. Roll out, trying to keep the shape as round as possible, until very thin--almost see-through, but making sure the bottom isn’t stuck. Use a small offset spatula to run underneath the rolled out dough. If the dough tears, don’t panic--gather the dough together into a ball again & re-roll it. 
  10. Very gently lift the dough & slide your hand underneath the dough. Transfer it to the preheated skillet. Cook until lightly browned on one side, flip, and continue cooking until that side is also lightly browned. Once flipped, the lefse may bubble--use a heat tempered spatula to gently press down on the big bubbles. On our electric stove set at roughly 4.5, mine took about 1 min 15 sec on the first side & an additional 1 min on the second side. 
  11. Transfer cooked pieces to a plate & repeat with the remaining dough. 
  12. Once the lefse cools completely, store in an airtight container. Keep at room temperature for one day maximum, then refrigerate or freeze for longevity.  I find the lefse tastes more like traditional lefse the day following when it was made.   

Notes: 

  • The recipe doubles very well, but the individual cooking process is more laborious. I cut my original batch in half because I got tired of running back and forth from rolling the lefse to cooking the lefse. 
  • I do not recommend making the dough ahead of time & refrigerating overnight--I found  the dough to be much more fragile the second day. 
  • If you have an actual lefse griddle, feel free to use it, though I do not personally have one & have not tried using any surface other than a non-stick pan. 
  • A lefse stick won’t work because the dough is too fragile. 
  • To serve, roll the lefse sheet into a tube. I usually like my lefse with butter and sugar on it, but this sweet potato version is naturally sweeter & I find it doesn’t need any additional butter or sugar. My husband, on the other hand, likes his spread with jam. 

This post contains affiliate links. Thanks for supporting Sweet Treats