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paleo cherry crumble bars

Yield: 16

Filling:
12 oz. pitted tart cherries (weighed after pitting)
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 Tbsp. coconut sugar
Pinch of sea salt
3 Tbsp. chia seeds
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Crust:
2 cups almond flour
2 Tbsp. coconut oil
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. sea salt

Topping:
3/4 cup walnuts
3/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
2 Tbsp. maple syrup
1 Tbsp. coconut oil
Generous pinch of sea salt

1. Make filling: Place cherries, maple syrup, coconut sugar and salt in a pan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring often, for 10 to 15 minutes, until juices have released and fruit is very soft. Mash with a fork to break up cherries into a chunky jam consistency. Stir in chia seeds and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, 5 minutes longer (mixture will thicken more as it cools). Transfer to a bowl, stir in vanilla and let cool, then cover and refrigerate.
2. Preheat oven to 350ºF; line an 8-inch square pan with foil and mist foil with cooking spray (I use Chosen Foods avocado oil spray). In a food processor, combine all crust ingredients plus 1 Tbsp. water and pulse until mixture comes together as a dough. Press evenly into pan. Bake for about 15 minutes, until golden. Let cool.
3. While crust is baking, make topping: Place all ingredients in food processor (no need to clean it after crust) and pulse until combined and crumbly. 
4. Carefully spread cherry filling evenly over crust, sprinkle with topping and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until filling bubbles and topping is golden. Let cool completely on a wire rack, then cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before cutting into bars. (You can eat it sooner, but it will be very soft and more like a crumble than bars. Not a bad thing, just a bit messier and would require a fork.)

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Strawberry-Rhubarb Chia Jam

Yield: About 2 1/2 cups

8 oz. rhubarb, halved lengthwise, sliced
16 oz. strawberries, hulled, halved (quartered if large)
1/4 cup coconut sugar
2 Tbsp. maple syrup
Pinch of fine sea salt
3 Tbsp. chia seeds
1 Tbsp. fresh orange juice
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1. In a medium saucepan, combine rhubarb, strawberries, coconut sugar, maple syrup and salt. Cover, turn heat to medium and bring mixture to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Simmer for about 4 to 5 minutes, or until fruit is very tender and has released its juices. Mash fruit with a fork until chunky.

2. Uncover pan, stir in chia seeds and orange juice, reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened and most of chunks have disappeared, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. (Jam will firm up as it cools, so don't worry if it seems runny.) When cool, transfer to jars, cover and refrigerate.
 

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Allie's paleo morning glory muffins

Yield: 12

1/4 cup coconut flour
2 scoops collagen peptides
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. turmeric
1/4 tsp. fine sea salt
1 grind black pepper (or a pinch if pre-ground)
2 large ripe bananas, mashed
3 large eggs
3 Tbsp. coconut oil, melted
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk (or other milk of choice)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/3 cup coconut butter (or other nut butter of choice)
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup raisins (I used golden)
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans or walnuts

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF; line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper or foil liners.

2. In a medium bowl, combine flour, collagen, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, turmeric, salt and pepper; mix well. In a food processor or high-speed blender, combine bananas, eggs, coconut oil, almond milk, vanilla and coconut butter; blend until smooth. Pour banana mixture into coconut flour mixture and fold in, folding in carrots, raisins and pecans at the end. Be sure all of flour mixture is well incorporated.

3. Divide batter among muffin cups and bake until centers spring back when touched and a toothpick inserted in a muffin comes out clean, about 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then remove muffins from pan and place on rack to cool completely. Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator.
 

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Icelandic Graflax

Eating fish regularly is likely a major factor in the longevity of Icelanders. This traditional salt-cured fish is usually served over buttered dark rye bread with a homemade honey-mustard sauce.

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Fattoush Salad with Sumac Pita Crisps

This herbed salad with crunchy pita is eaten widely around Israel. Traditionally made with stale pita, in this version the bread is lightly toasted and tossed with olive oil and a touch of sumac before it's tossed in the salad.

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Classic caponata

This piquant relish, made with eggplant, onions, celery, capers and a generous amount of olive oil and vinegar, embodies its home island of Sicily. Eat it warm or cold, spread it on crostini, spoon it on top of grilled chicken or fish, or fold it into an omelette.

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