Happy Thanks-keto-giving!

Happy Thanks-keto-giving!

If you’re trying to keep the holidays one hundred this year I’ve rounded up a few tricks to eat and drink clean-ish!

Eat

Load up on the turkey. Its a clean protein that will fill you up and alleviate any cravings or rounds 3 & 4. Next comes turkey’s BFF gravy. It’s traditionally made with flour, or cornstarch, or a cream. Spices and herbs could be a great flavor replacement.

If you are in charge of contributing one of the dishes of the evening you could take on the stuffing or cranberry sauce and elevate it a bit. Stuffing doesn’t have to be majority carbs. Bring a grain-free stuffing and see if you can convert some family members. On to the cranberry sauce, monk fruit and orange zest can add a sweet taste to hold off on the white sugar. If you are trying to be mindful, cranberries contain sugar on their own + the amount you have to add, so if you’re not attached, save your sugar in take for a dessert or wine, or both.

And don’t troll me for this one, I’ve almost come to like cauliflower mash better than mashed potatoes. Something about it is lighter and maybe holds flavor better? I don’t know! But, I do know that it is the easiest Thanksgiving prank to play on yourself. Jazz it up with Kite Hill “cream cheese” or Kerrygold butter; there are so many recipes and I’ve linked one here.

One easy way to make sure you get enough fiber on this merry day? Bring a salad! This one by Ina Garten would be perfect; it has a yummy autumn tone.

Last but never least, dessert. No one says no to more desserts. So, if there is a delicious grain-free, or gluten-free, refined sugar-free dessert you have in mind, bring it! I’m making Rachel Mansfield’s paleo pumpkin chocolate cupcakes, you can find the recipe here and so many other options.

Drink

Wine

Have you heard about natural or biodynamic wine yet? I come from a long line of wine drinkers; so I’ve done a few years of taste testing, and people say we have no talent (trademark Kris Jenner)! I’ve gotten more conscious about the ingredients I eat and in turn it has spilled over into what I drank (the alcohol version of drink). 

We started dabbling in organically farmed wine, organic wine, and now biodynamic, which is like the mystical Ivy League version of organic. Some will say it’s a little “earthy”, but simply put it is a holistic way of wine agriculture

My best advice is to find an organic wine & liquor store in your city. If you are in Dallas, Bar & Garden is you new nirvana. This way you can detail your normal pallet and how much you’d like to spend and they can use their expertise.

My thought process is this: how many grocery stores and liquor stores carry Educated Guess or Meiomi? I guess every damn Tom Thumb or Kroger! So they are definitely adding something in to the wine! If you shop small batch wine or organic/biodynamic wine you can feel good about being bad. Be a chic lush and research into what you’re drinking, the wine maker, the region, the philosophy (and I promise you don’t have to spend a ton!). 

I apologize for the wine nerd rant! But, save your hangover and holiday conversation from politics and fam drama, drink bio and be merry!

Spirits

One thing my sister Averey and I found was that you can make a good, “normal” simple syrup with monk fruit. Make it yourself and enjoy an elevated cocktail that’s not bogged down with sugar.

If you’re a vodka gal, go Chopin, the potato vodka. This news may sadden the state of Texas, our great claim to fame Titos is made with GMO corn. I’m sorry to do this to you. But, you can also go organic; there are organic vodkas made from grapes. Who knew!

Have a beautiful Thanksgiving! I’m very thankful for my family and friends, perhaps the only people reading these at the moment. 🙂

xx, Kalain

Tried & Tested: Health-ify Your Ingredients

Tried & Tested: Health-ify Your Ingredients

It was a Saturday night, 8 PMish, red wine, and Ina Garten’s bolognese simmering on the stove top. Maybe I had won that night and Sam Smith was playing, a common musical three-way debate between myself, Brian, and Alexa.

And I struck self proclaimed genius. This recipe was almost completely guilt free, we look to the wine for our indulgences, but I could make one change and it’s now dairy-free/additive-free/etc. One easy recipe substitution, coconut milk for heavy cream. Female Einstein- I know!

And you might be thinking okay that’s not very revolutionary-get a life, but I had realized I could take some of my favorite recipes that had a few ingredients I wasn’t loving, swap it, and I could still enjoy. Replace before remove!

Below I put together common ingredients and the swaps I’ve tested. Take a screen shot and see if you can fix up one of your favorites.


Dairy

Heavy cream: coconut cream (the can will say coconut milk). Place the can in your refrigerator and the cream and water will separate.

Whipping cream: coconut cream or macadamia milk. You can even make your own macadamia nut milk (1 part nuts + 2 parts water). Macadamia nuts are one of the best nuts to eat; they are not inflammatory and you don’t have to soak the nuts ahead of time because they are low in phytic acid. Making your own milk will also be thicker and contain no additives. Whipping cream and heavy cream are very similar so they are quite interchangeable here for subs.

Buttermilk: you have a couple options here! Mix 1 TBS of ACV or lemon juice with 1 cup of nut milk. Then let it set for 15 minutes at room temperature to thicken. If you’re baking try Cream of Tartar (in the spice section). Use 1.5 teaspoons to one cup of milk, but it’s better to mix it into the dry ingredients as it tends to clump when mixed into liquid. It can give your baked goods the same light and fluffy effect as buttermilk, without vinegar or lemon aftertastes.

Half & Half: Half & Half is the lightest cream in terms of fat percentage. Ripple makes a dairy free half & half that is pea protein based. Also Califa Farms has an option that is dairy free.


Sugars

White/cane sugar: coconut sugar, date sugar, date paste. These metabolize like any other sugar (slightly lower GI), but they do have the added advantage of minerals and vitamins and are less processed.

Monk fruit is a zero sugar sweetener. It can be used 1:1 in baking and cooking. Just be sure to check the ingredients for additives.

Maple syrup, lucuma, and mesquite (not what you’re thinking) are all lower on the glycemic index (indicates the effect carbs have on a person’s blood glucose level).

Raw, unpasteurized honey has many medicinal benefits, such as regulating hormones and balancing immunity as well as many vitamins.

Yacon syrup is lower in calories than honey and maple syrup because it contains indigestable inulin, which is a probiotic fiber and it cannot be broken down by our bodies so it passes right through.  It is also low on the glycemic index.


Pantry Items

White/wheat flour: I have found success with Bob’s Red Mill Paleo Baking Flour. I have also recently liked cashew flour. You can find it on Amazon or if your in a pinch make it yourself in a food processor; just don’t let it go too long or you’ll have cashew butter.

Cornstarch: arrowroot powder/flour (same thing) or potato starch. These are from plants and vegetables and obviously cornstarch is from corn and unfortunately majority of corm grown is a GMO. Arrowroot is also nutrient rich.

Bread crumbs/panko: I go GF, saves so much sugar.

Tortillas/Chips: Siete.

Pasta: Cappello’s, they have three different noodle types: linguini, lasagna, and gnocchi. I do also like the red lentil pasta as Trader Joes.

Pizza crust: Outer Aisle cauliflower crust, Cappello’s almond flour, or Simple Mills almond flour (might be the easier one to find in more grocery stores; the other two I’ve only seen at Whole Foods or Natural Grocer).

I hope this inspires The Great DWD Baking/Cooking Show! My last bit of advice I’ve learned; if you recipe prep you have time to find certain items in an organic or an all natural brand on Amazon/Whole Foods/Natural Grocers. For example; in Ina’s new cookbook Cook Like A Pro she has a lovely recipe for Roasted Shrimp Cocktail Louis. She calls for Heinz chili sauce and if you check out the ingredients the third one is high fructose corn syrup. If you take time to prepare Organicvillle makes an organic chili sauce with very clean ingredients. Try it with that instead and make sure you have the time to run it down.

Happy cooking!

xx, Kalain