Paleo Blondies

Yield: 12- 15

Coconut oil, for pan
1 large egg
1/2 cup cashew butter (almond or another nut butter would work, too)
1/2 cup tiger nut flour
1/3 cup coconut sugar (1/4 cup might do it)
1 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 2.1-oz. Hu Kitchen Simple chocolate bar, finely chopped (or another Paleo chocolate bar, or 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips)

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with coconut oil.
2. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except chocolate; stir until well mixed. Fold in chocolate. Spread evenly in prepared pan.
3. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, until just turning golden on edges but still somewhat soft in the center. Let cool completely in pan on a wire rack, then cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before cutting.

NOTE: I like these with chocolate, but you could add cinnamon to the batter and use raisins or dried cherries or cranberries instead of the chocolate, if you prefer. Or add cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and a pinch of ground clove for a gingerbread blondie.



Grain-free waffles

Yield: 4

½ cup blanched almond flour

½ cup arrowroot

¾ tsp. baking powder

¼ tsp. baking soda

1/8 tsp. salt

¼ cup plain full-fat yogurt

2 large eggs

½ tsp. vanilla extract

Butter or coconut oil cooking spray, for waffle iron


Preheat oven to 200ºF; preheat waffle iron. In a bowl, combine almond flour, arrowroot, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix well. Add yogurt, eggs, and vanilla, stir until well combined. Grease waffle iron. Cook batter in waffle iron, following manufacturer’s instructions. Keep warm in oven while making remaining waffles.



Paleo dark chocolate-sesame-banana muffins

I've done lots of variations on these--they're quick and easy to make, keep in the fridge for several days and really satisfy. This version is for you if you like things not very sweet -- as in, you'd rather have an 80% chocolate bar than a Snickers. The sesame flavor from the tahini really comes through, so the muffins sort of remind me of chocolate halva. I added a super-dark chocolate to this (90%), but if you prefer a sweeter taste, you could toss in a handful of mini chocolate chips instead. Also, I used date syrup, but maple would work just as well, and you could add a bit more to sweeten these up.

Yield: 12 muffins

3 medium-sized ripe bananas
3 large eggs
1/2 cup tahini
3 Tbsp. date syrup (I used Date Lady) or maple syrup
1/4 cup full-fat coconut milk
1/4 cup unsweetened cacao powder
1/4 cup coconut flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 of a 2.65-oz. bar 90% chocolate (I used Alter Eco Super Blackout)

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF; line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.
2. In a high-speed blender or food processor, combine bananas, eggs, tahini, date syrup and coconut milk; blend until smooth. Add cacao, coconut flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and vanilla; blend. Break chocolate into pieces and add to blender; blend until smooth.
3. Divide batter among muffin cups and bake until muffins are springy to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the center of one comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then remove muffins to rack to cool completely.



Raw Asparagus Salad


Raw Asparagus Salad

Roasting, grilling, sauteing--there are plenty of ways to cook asparagus deliciously. But it also works beautifully raw, and it has a milder taste, so this is the preparation for you if you're feeding someone who isn't as crazy about asparagus as you are (hey, nobody's perfect...). Enjoy the salad as written below, or add the shaved pieces to a bigger salad with lettuce and such to serve more people.

Shaved Asparagus Salad
Serves: 2

1 bunch thick asparagus, ends trimmed
5 artichoke heart quarters, thinly sliced lengthwise
8 pitted black olives, chopped
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp. toasted sliced almonds, optional

1. Prepare the asparagus: Peel off the outermost layer using a vegetable peeler. Working one at a time, lay a spear on a cutting board or countertop. Working from the stem end to the top, and pressing down firmly with the peeler, cut the spear into thin strips. Transfer to a large bowl; repeat with remaining spears. (If you have ends that you can't cut into strips, wrap and refrigerate and use for something else.)
2. Add artichoke hearts and olives to bowl with asparagus ribbons. Drizzle on oil and lemon juice; season generously with salt and pepper. Toss. Top with almonds, if desired, and serve right away.



Asparagus pesto

Try it anywhere you'd use regular pesto: On zoodles (or regular pasta), spooned over grilled fish, thinned with oil or yogurt into a salad dressing.

Asparagus pesto

Yield: About 1 cup


1 1-lb. bunch asparagus, trimmed

2 1/2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

3 cloves garlic, unpeeled

Fine sea salt

½ cup chopped walnuts

Juice of 1 lemon (about 3 Tbsp.)

1 Tbsp. hemp seeds

¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

Freshly ground black pepper


1.     Preheat oven to 375ºF. Line a large baking sheet with parchment. Toss asparagus with 1 Tbsp. oil and spread on baking sheet. Rub garlic cloves with a little bit of oil and place in a corner of baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt. Roast, shaking pan occasionally, until asparagus is tender, about 20 to 25 minutes. In last 10 minutes, place walnuts on one edge of baking sheet. Remove from oven and let cool. Squeeze garlic out of skins.

2.     Pat asparagus dry with paper towels. Place asparagus, garlic and walnuts in a food processor. Add lemon juice, hemp seeds, parsley and 1 Tbsp. oil. Pulse to chop, then process until well combined and finely minced. Taste and season with salt and pepper.



Baked carrot "fries"

Baked carrot "fries"

Serves 4

1 ½ lbs. carrots

2 Tbsp. olive oil or avocado oil

½ tsp. salt

2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary, optional

Pinch of ground pepper

1. Preheat oven to 425ºF. Line a large baking sheet with parchment.

2. Cut the ends off carrots, peel and cut in half crosswise. Halve each half lengthwise, then halve lengthwise again for form “fries.” Transfer to a large bowl. Add oil and seasonings; toss to coat.

3. Spread carrots evenly on baking sheet and bake, stirring once, until lightly browned and caramelized, about 20 minutes. (If the carrots haven’t browned yet, cook for 5 to 10 minutes longer, or broil for 2 to 3 minutes, watching carefully so they don’t burn.) Serve hot.