Kitchen fail of the week: So I have recently taken a slight interest in the Paleo lifestyle. Not completely, don’t worry all my sweet-toothed, carb loving friends, I am not abandoning you. I could never follow this type of lifestyle… well, actually I’m sure I could if I really tried… but I am a firm believer in bread. And cheese. And I will never give it up, NEVER I TELL YOU! YOU’LL NEVER TAKE ME ALIVE! Sorry… I get a little carried away when I talk about any type of bread free diet. I’ll try to be a little less dramatic about the whole thing from here on out, promise. Anyway, despite my unhealthy addiction to carbohydrates, over the last few months I have really been trying to cut down, and I have been really trying to cut out any and all processed foods. So far, I’d say that I have cut down more than 60% of processed foods, and 100% of artificial sweeteners. Including aspartame (I’ll miss you diet Coke!) and Splenda based products (my coffee is a little bit bitter but I have been substituting with honey). Anyway, since I am a huge foodie and love learning about different types of diets and lifestyles, I decided to try some Paleo recipes. Since I am focused on losing about 10 pounds by Christmas time (although I’m not sure how focused I will be considering the amount of baking I’ll be doing… how can I not try my treats?), and since I wasn’t gifted with the “eat anything you want and you won’t gain a pound” kind of body, and I’m absolutely not a “oh my god I love the gym because it just totally helps me blow off steam and I really love sweating” kind of girl, but more of a “I’d rather eat my own vomit then spend another damn second on that treadmill and oh my god I can’t breath I think I’m dying from this 10 minute jog” kind of girl, a weight loss of any kind, whether it be small or big, will require effort, and change.
So let’s talk Paleo. As I understand it, the Paleo lifestyle is based on eating wholesome, contemporary foods from the food groups of hunter-gatherer societies during the Paleolithic era. The time period would be around 2.6 million years ago up until the agricultural revolution, which dated about 10,000 years ago. Paelo dos include: fresh meats (preferable grass-fed or free-range), fish, seafood, fresh fruits and vegetables, seeds, nuts, and healthy oils such as olive or coconut oil, flax seed avocado, etc. Paleo don’ts include ceral grains, legumes, refined sugars, processed foods, and dairy (FYI I got all this info from thepealeodiet[dot]com). One thing I know I could NEVER give up is dairy. Starches? maybe. If I really had to. If I really made a commitment. I’ve done it before and I could probably do it again. But dairy? I will die before I give up cheese! You will have to pry it out of my cold dead hands before I give it up! I’m being dramatic again. Anyway. So I decided to try a Paleo pizza recipe last Friday. It uses coconut milk, coconut flour, eggs, garlic and a few spices for the crust. Blend in a processor and then spread in a pizza pan and bake. It was a disaster. Needless to say the recipe was not meant for me. I offered my dad seconds, and he refused, saying he was full (if you know my dad you will know that he does not refuse seconds) and my boyfriend flat out said that I will be a single woman if I ever though of making him a fake pizza crust again… Oh well, at least I tried.
Anyway, on to the good stuff. I am a Christmas freak. A big one. I’m one of those crazy people who start planning for Christmas before Halloween is over, and start decorating the first week of November. This means, of course, that I start my Christmas baking just as early as I decorate my house. My first recipe for this year is S’more Blondies. I love S’mores – the chocolate, marshmallows and the ewey-gooeyness, it reminds me of campfires and summer. So, when I stumbled on this recipe I just HAD to make it.
I got this recipe from motherthyme[dot]com. These things a frigging good. I Had one while it was still warm annnnnnd I almost died and went to heaven. I found it very difficult to cut these things though, the marshmallow wasn’t having any of it.
Chewy S’more Blondies
makes 12 to 16 blondies (or more if you make them smaller, I managed to get 32 small blondies out of the batch)
- 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
- 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
- 1/2 tsp baking poeder
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted and cooled
- 1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 8 oz. milk chocolate squares, roughly chopped
- 2 cups mini marshmallows
1. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Spray a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper.
2. Mix flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Mix until combined and set aside.
3. Beat butter and brown sugar in a large bowl. Add vanilla and then eggs, one at a time. Mix until combined. Gradually add flour mixture until combined.
4. Spread the blondie mixture into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes on centre rack.
5. In a small bowl toss marshmallows and chocolate and then sprinkle on top of the blondies. Return to oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
One Christmas bake down…ten to go? I’m going to try a new nanaimo recipe next week so stay tuned for that. Happy baking!