Recipe: Paleo Turkish Delight

Have you switched over to Paleo or generally cleaner eating and are missing certain ‘junk’ foods you used to eat regularly? Say, some particular chocolate bars? I sometimes do.

One of my old favourites was the Fry’s Turkish Delight! Or really good, authentic Turkish Delight pieces I’d find occasionally at cafe’s and foodie festivals/markets coated in sugar powder. <drool>

And would you agree a lot of Paleo/healthy swaps just don’t taste as good as the original version? I find it a lot; with breads and cakes, candy, all types of foods – often the taste or texture is off slightly, or even no where near. It’s not the end of the world of course, but it would be nice to get closer to the original version of some fave foods and memories.

Well.. I’m happy to announce my healthier version of Turkish Delight certainly comes very close to the Fry’s version I used to enjoy so much! Yay!

I’m giving you my recipe so you too can enjoy this yumminess, with both the way of coating it in chocolate (Paleo, or close to it, depending on what chocolate you use) like the Fry’s product, or in arrowroot (definitely Paleo) to replace the powdered sugar. Let me know what you think!

turkish delight choc

TURKISH DELIGHT

For the actual lolly you’ll need:

2 cups pomegranite juice (try to find one that’s organic or at least pure with nothing added)

2 tsbp rose water (check Asian stores and health food stores for this)

Raw honey to sweeten (quantity is up to you, with there being pomegranite juice in this recipe you may find you don’t wish to include honey at all)

4 tbsp pure grass-fed beef gelatin powder (grab some here)

The method:

  1. Pour pomegranite juice into a saucepan on the stove withOUT turning the heat on
  2. Gently sprinkle the gelatin powder over the surface of the juice, evenly
  3. Let it sit for a couple of minutes so the gelatin granules absorb the liquid and soften, or “bloom”
  4. Once softened turn the stove on to medium-high heat and use a whisk to stir until granules of gelatin have completely dissolved
  5. Turn the heat off but while the liquid is still hot add honey if you’re using it, and rose water then stir to combine
  6. Pour into a square or rectangle container, oven tray etc, something that’s flat and doesn’t have grooves or funny edges, so you can later on cut the set slice into squares or cubes. Or transfer liquid to a jug then pour into moulds. I used a long oven bread tin for mine which is non-stick and has flat sides and bottom, making it perfect for this type of recipe
  7. Set in the fridge for a few hours until the mixture feels firm to touch
  8. Gently remove from the mould/tray/container by pressing around the entire edge with your finger to seperate from the side of the container then turn upside down, hold close to your kitchen bench or chopping board then you should see the ‘jelly slice’ start to come out of the container. Watch it closely and guide it out as needed so it doesn’t break
  9. Use a flat blade knife to cut to size (even-sized squares for example)

Now you have a basic Paleo Turkish Delight! Have a taste, do you get that nice, familar hit of rose water? It’s so good!

 

Here’s how you can create either a choc coated or powder coated version… 

Chocolate Coated

You’ll need:

1 block plain paleo/primal/healthy-as-possible chocolate (I used the new Coles brand 70% dark chocolate because it’s dairy and soy-free) melted

OR

Make your own chocolate using cacao butter, organic cocoa powder, raw honey to sweeten, pure vanilla and melted coconut oil

Method:

  1. Let the chocolate mixture cool in a large container (large enough to get your hand into easily with some room to move around) but not to the point it’s becoming lumpy or re-setting then gently place Turkish Delight piece into the container to coat thinly with chocolate
  2. Place each piece onto a sheet of baking paper that’s on a chilled board or flat plate of some kind that’s been in the fridge or freezer. This will help the underside of each piece set quicker and prevent you losing more chocolate coating than necessary on the baking paper!
  3. Store in an air-tight container in the fridge (if it lasts that long!!)

This version may not be technically “Paleo” depending on the chocolate you use. Cane sugar isn’t classed as Paleo but I personally don’t mind consuming it occassionally. I’d rather use a chocolate that had coconut sugar though.

 

Powder Coated

turkish delight powder

You’ll need:

1/2 – 3/4 cup arrowroot powder

Optional: 1 tsp pure vanilla powder

Method:

  1. Sprinkle half the arrowoot on a board or late plate
  2. Gently place each piece of Turkish Delight on the board/plate then turn over. Use your fingers held out together and flat to pat each side to remove excess arrowroot leaving you with an even coating on each side. I find if you don’t try to pat the excess away and you coat each surface the taste overpowers the actual gummy; a thin layer on the top and bottom seems to be plenty
  3. Store in an air-tight container in the fridge but keep in mind the moisture may absorb into the arrowroot, reducing it’s powdery-ness.

Now you have a version of Turkish Delight similar to that found in cafes and at markets with that classic and famililar powder coating!

You can probably store either in a container in the pantry, but keep in mind there is BEEF in there, it may not last long outside of the fridge before going ‘off’.

I hope you enjoy whichever version you make! Let me know how you go and what you think!

Oh and before I go, my message is never “you should eat strict Paleo all the time” because I certainly don’t! I believe we each need to find a happy balance with what we eat and how we live. So if you feel like having the ‘junk’ version of Turkish Delight.. then do it! Own it and enjoy it.

However, for those times you feel like a healthy option then now you have one 🙂

That’s all the wisdom I have for you for today..!

Aimee x

 

5 Things I’m Grateful for Today:

  1. gelatin and how it helps me heal
  2. getting sun today for over 30mins
  3. a good catchup with Chris this morning
  4. Eric Church songs
  5. Spotting whales yesterday
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Recipe: Paleo Fish n Chips with Lime Aioli

Last night after another awesome Primal Fitness Class we popped into Woolies to grab something for dinner (yes we still shop at big bad chain supermarkets.. we sometimes need to – don’t judge!) and I had the idea to make fish n chips. Partly because we love making crispy chips out of different veggies (very rarely potato, bit too inflammatory for us unfortunately) plus there were a few choices of wild-caught seafood on special at the Deli. Yay!

So we grabbed some beautiful flathead fillets (50% off, why not?!), a parsnip and a white-fleshed sweet potato to go with the orange sweet potato we had at home.

I’d been wanting to try using green banana flour (only my favourite ingredient in the world!) with fish to fry to see how it went… so I did!

It turned out brilliantly and alongside crispy baked veggie chips and a serve of lime aioli… dinner was sorted and pretty darn enjoyable (if I do say so myself <wink>!).

Here’s the recipe for you guys to make and enjoy it for yourselves!

 

PALEO FISH N CHIPS WITH LIME AIOLI

fish n chiups

You’ll need:

500g fresh wild-caught flathead fillets

1/4 cup green banana flour (Natural Evolution available here)

About 1/2 cup healthy oil/fat to fry and bake with (I used olive oil as it was on hand, but you can use ghee, coconut oil, rendered animal fat etc)

Juice of 1 small lime

Wedges of lime to garnish

1 cup organic cold-pressed olive oil (Coles organic variety is the nicest we’ve found so far for making aioli/mayo)

1 pastured egg

About 1 tbsp roast garlic puree or garlic powder (more or less depending on your taste)

Veggies for chips (I used a combo of parsnip, purple skin/white flesh sweet potato and orange sweet potato as they all crisp up pretty well) – use a mandolin or julienne slicer to cut evenly

Himalayan salt to taste

Tip: use a flat-based fry pan so the oil/fat covers evenly

 

To do:

  1. For the chips: Pre-heat oven to 180.
  2. Cut up the veggies to about 5cm long and only 1-2 mm thick then place them flat and close together on an oven tray lined with baking paper and a thin layer of oil/fat. You may need 2 oven trays depending on how many slices of veggies you have
  3. Use your fingers or a cooking brush to spread a thin layer of oil/fat over the top surface of each veggie to ensure each piece has a nice coating
  4. Sprinkle salt over the top then place in the oven. Keep an eye on them because your oven may not cook evenly and some chips may cook or burn before others, so place your timer on to remind you to check every 2 or so minutes. Shuffle chips around as you need so they cook evenly. Keep in mind… white-flesh sweet potato hardens before it looks like it’s crispy! So check doneness by tasting a piece for yourself!
  5. Once chips are cooked to your liking place them on paper towel to absorb excess fat then place onto plates or serving dish.
  6. Alternatively you could fry the chips in a large pan on the stove.
  7. For the fish: heat a non-stick fry pan on medium-high temp with oil/fat you’re using to fry in, ensuring there’s an even layer of a few millimeters for the fish to sit in. Keep some oil/fat aside for the cut the fillets to a smaller size if they’re quite large and came in a fork-shape when you bought them, then coat in banana flour and some salt. I don’t use egg mixture to coat first as I like just a thin layer of flour so the flavour doesn’t overpower the fish
  8. Place the fish in gently to avoid fat splashing on you and let one side brown slightly before turning over carefully with tongs to let the other side brown. If you notice the first piece of fish breaking as you try to move it that means it’s cooked through so try to keep the other fillets on the first side for less time than that one 🙂
  9. Place browned fish pieces onto a plate with paper towel to absorb excess fat then place on a plate or serving dish
  10. For the aioli: in a stick blender cup add the lime juice, the egg, a pinch of salt and the garlic then blitz on high for a couple of seconds to completely emulsify
  11. Ask someone to hold onto it for you or somehow secure it to your bench then with one hand holding the stick blender on high inside the cup, use your other hand to pour in the cup of olive oil
  12. Move the stick blender up and down a few times to get all the oil blended properly. It shouldn’t take long to have a thick and slightly green looking mixture
  13. Alternatively, if using a regular blender follow all steps except turn the speed to LOW and pour in the oil VERY SLOWLY to prevent the mixture from splitting
  14. Spoon into a serving bowl or place dollops onto plates alongside the fish and chips. Garnish with lime wedges and serve
  15. Remaining aioli can last in the fridge in a sealed jar or container for a week or more

You’re done and you now have a pretty healthy version of an old favourite takeaway dish! Enjoy 🙂

 

Aimee x

 

5 Things I’m Grateful For:

  1. all the yum foods I create and eat
  2. the 30 min of sunshine I had today to boost my immune system
  3. seeing mum this weekend for her birthday
  4. our event on Saturday for kids and adults, it’s going to be so fun!
  5. The Food Network on SBS.. lol

Recipe: a Paleo dairy-free and nut-free cheese alternative

There are stacks of dairy-free ‘cheese’ recipes online and in books now. Some taste good and some taste nothing like cheese of course. Some are easy to make, some are really hard work.  Plus, most are made using nuts and not everyone can tolerate nuts well. Like me!

Most of my recipes are derived from a desire to create Paleo-friendly nut-free dishes for those who are allergic, don’t feel good eating many nuts, or just want nut-free alternatives. Especially important for school lunchboxes!

Last year I was introduced to an amazing dairy-free nut-free melting cheese recipe thanks to the legendary Aussie Paleo Chef (as known on Facebook, but just ‘Dan’ to us!) which goes brilliantly in Paleo burgers, in lasagne and on my chicken parmie recipe (in my soon-to-come Banana Flour e-book!!) and one of my fave recipes to teach people at private cooking workshops, always crediting back to the man himself of course!

If you’d like to grab his melting cheese recipe just download the Paleo Kitchen Creations e-book and enjoy the deliciousness!

So since learning that recipe, using it a lot and loving it.. I wanted to create a cheese that didn’t work only melted and could be spread onto crackers like regular animal milk-based cheese. One day I got creative in the kitchen and came up with a winner, using similar ingredients to Dan’s recipe, but slightly different. Of course though, me being me and not always organised in the kitchen, I didn’t write down the recipe as I went and couldn’t then remember the ingredients or method afterwards therefore I couldn’t replicate it so I could give it to you guys! Oh believe me, I tried! And failed… many times.

I’d almost given up but decided recently to have another crack.. and whad’ya know.. success!

I’ve finally created a spreadable cheese alternative recipe! I’ll be honest though, it doesn’t taste like real cheese, no cheese substitutes do. But, it’s a really healthy alternative and something interesting to include at dinner parties, as a snack, whenever you’d usually use cheese really.

Since it isn’t cheese and doesn’t taste exactly like cheese, let’s not call it “cheese”. Because that’s a fib after all! Instead, how ’bout we call it.. Cheezy Paleo Spread as it does have a likeness to cheese but it’s not the same as it, and that’s kinda cheezy I think! 😉

Cheezy Paleo Spread image

Ingredients you’ll need:

1/2 cup organic desiccated coconut

1/2 cup arrowroot flour

1 tbsp grass-fed pure beef gelatin powder (grab some via our affiliate link here)

2 tbsp spring/filtered water

1/2-1 tsp turmeric powder – depending on how yellow you want your cheez

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

1 tbsp Niulife creamed coconut (not coconut cream/milk, but dried coconut processed to become ‘creamy’)

Himalayan salt to taste

 

Kitchen bits you’ll need:

Good blender (high speed, bullet, or glass with decent power)

Whisk

Measuring spoons and cups

Round or square/rectangle container lined with baking paper or plastic wrap. Plastic wrap will probably allow for creases to appear around the edges of the cheez but that’s not necessarily a bad thing!

 

Steps to follow:

  1. In a small saucepan add 1 tbsp water and gently sprinkle gelatin powder evenly over the surface. Do not turn the stove on until the gelatin powder has absorbed some of the water and has ‘bloomed’.
  2. Turn heat to medium and whisk the liquid so all gelatin granules have dissolved. Remove from the heat and set aside
  3. Add to the blender add all remaining ingredients then drizzle the gelatin water on top
  4. Place the lid on the blender and blitz on high to break down the desiccated coconut and combine everything well. You can blitz until you reach a very smooth consistency or stop before it reaches that if you prefer the texture of some of the coconut remaining
  5. As you’re blending feel free to add a smidge more water (as in 1 tsp at a time) in case the mixture is too thick and isn’t combining properly. This can depend on your blender. Basically, you’re after a well combined and thick mixture with no lumps of creamed coconut or arrowroot remaining
  6. Once it’s to your liking use a silicon spatula or food processor scraper (food processor scrapers seem to work perfectly for getting around all the grooves in blenders!) to remove the mixture and transfer to the lined container
  7. Gently tap the base of the container on a steady surface like a chopping board to help the mixture spread to the corners and settle evenly
  8. Place in the fridge for a couple of hours to set
  9. When it’s time to serve, take it out of the fridge, grab the plastic or paper to remove it all from the container then remove the paper/plastic so you’re left with a big chunk of yellow cheez
  10. Serve on a platter with crackers spread out around, or cut to smaller sizes if you wish. Keep in mind on a really hot day outside the cheez may melt because of the coconut oil and gelatin but it will take a while to melt completely. Use a butter knife to spread onto crackers or slide carrot sticks into it. Easy!
  11. Store in the fridge in an air-tight container or wrapped in plastic. It contains gelatin which is an animal product so it will spoil after a few days as with any animal product. The apple cider vinegar will help preserve it to an extent but if the smell or colour changes please discard it.

Enjoy!

The recipe for the Rosemary Crackers (in the image) will be in my Banana Flour e-book, so be sure to keep an eye out for that.. launching in February 2016, yay!

Cheezy Paleo Spread image (1)

I hope you enjoy creating and eating this recipe, please do let me know what you think!

 

Here are some answers to some questions I may get after sharing this recipe:

  • Why not use nutritional yeast? I have experimented with it many times and every time it leaves my stomach very bloated and gassy the next day. From what I’ve read about it, it’s so processed and unnatural in its useable state that it easily messes with digestion. And don’t we mostly go Paleo to improve gut health?! Feel free to use it if you can tolerate it well but remember it could have inflammatory effects. It would replace turmeric for the yellow effect but turmeric is so healthy!
  • Why use gelatin? Pure gelatin is so healing (so it’s actually good for digestion!) and helps create the texture of this cheez
  • Could I use other types of dried coconut? Yes but the larger the pieces the longer they’ll take to break down enough in the blender.

Let me know if you have any questions to add!

Thanks,

Aimee xx

 

5 Things I’m Grateful For:

  1. Our long weekend away in NSW going to a family wedding, seeing new places and staying with amazing friends
  2. The sun out today so I can get some Vitamin D!
  3. Healthy recipe creating
  4. All Dan’s wonderful advice and inspiration
  5. You guys reading our blogs!

Aimee reviews the gorgeous Merrymaker Sisters ebook!

I read a lot of ebooks. I like learning about social media, as well as paleo and primal health and fitness so I’ve registered to lots of e-newsletters and have received many e-books over the last few years. Plus I’m always on the hunt for awesome new recipes to add to my already-mammoth recipe bank!

But only occasionally does an ebook appear in my Inbox that fully captures my attention, makes me actually want to read all the way through and that I really enjoy…

.. and this one definitely did that! The lovely Carla and Emma Papas – AKA The Merrymaker Sisters – recently invited me to read their e-book to review and after following them on social media for a long time now and loving what they’re all about, I totally jumped at the chance!

First of all I was drawn in by the friendliness that instantly came through as I looked at the first couple of pages. Straight way I got a sense of the girl’s personalities and wanted to continue reading and get to know them better.

 

This e-book includes stacks of valuable info including:

– what paleo actually is

– how to shop confidently and successfully for paleo ingredients

– an abundance of recipes covering brekkie, lunch, dinner, drinks and yummy sweet treats

– with lots of neat little tips and tricks throughout!

 

merrymaker ebook

 

And it’s all displayed in a fun and bubbly way, it’s all easy to read and follow, it’s simple and do-able, and in my opinion, whether you’re new to paleo or an old pro, you’ll definitely get something out of it.

I love that the recipes include prep time AND cooking time! A lot don’t, but these gals have set them out clearly and with plenty of info to ensure your attempt turns out as well as what’s in the photos!

I get hungry every time I look through it, the food just looks amazing! There are some really unique and original ideas in there as well, like Shepherd’s Pie in a Capsicum! How cool is that?!

 

This is the first of 3 e-books the girls are creating and that makes me very happy! To know more awesomeness is on the way… YAY!

And.. I’m excited for another reason.. I’ll get to meet these gals in October at Cave Camp QLD!    Can. Not. Wait.!! If in person they’re anything like they are over the net and in their ebook I know I’m going to get along super well with them 🙂

 

So basically my take on  ‘Let’s Eat Paleo’ is its a really fun and interesting ebook, that’s easy to read, full of a variety of recipes for just about any occasion, it’s set out well and just scrolling through it creates as instant drool effect!

If you’d like to get your hands on this terrific read just click here!

 

1merrymaker ebook

 

Thanks for reading my review and I hope you enjoy the ebook as much as I did!

-Aimee x

 

5 Things I’m Grateful for Today:

1. The wonderful paleo/primal/natural health network in Australia and being a part of it

2. Yummy healthy paleo foods

3. My neighbour letting me use his washing machine while ours is broken!

4. Strawberries ripening up outside in my hanging gutter garden – first of the season!

5. Spending time in Kenilworth last weekend with Clint, we had a beautiful afternoon in the country