Salami Chips with Dijon-Thyme Dipping Sauce

paleo gluten-free whole30 salami chips dijon

Like a lot of my favorite recipes, these crispy salami chips are a copycat recipe from one of my favorite places in the Wood River Valley.

I make up recipes sometimes, sure. And sometimes I just go out to eat and then try to copy the ideas of more talented chefs than I. It’s a sickness. But it also results in a ton of delicious recipes, like this Konditorei Salad from Sun Valley Resort, this beet salad inspired by a dinner at Trail Creek Cabin with my mother-in-law. Oh yeah, and this butternut squash and kale salad (and this one), inspired by one at my favorite sandwich place, Bigwood Bread.

I enjoyed these salami chips at a wine bar in my new town called diVine, which is more famous for their delicious wine and indulgent fondue. Continue reading

Resolutions and Chicken Curry

cheap easy chicken curry vegan paleo options gluten-freeDid you make New Year’s resolutions? I almost never do. It seems to me if that if you want to change something in your life, you should just do it — go for it — change it, not try to force yourself to do that at an arbitrary time like the beginning of the year.

There is something symbolic and oddly satisfying about starting the new year with the best of intentions, though, with the optimism inherent in deciding that this year is going to be different. This year, I’ll make it to the gym three times a week. This year, I’ll keep up with blog posts. This year, I’ll finally read the financial magazines my husband constantly leaves around the house. This year, I’ll work harder to bring my lunch, not buy it.

Bringing my lunch is always a goal I’m working to achieve. Though I do get a break in the middle of the day for lunch, it’s also my chance to run errands, get a few extra hours in, or practice yoga. And with the price of a Cobb salad at my favorite lunch place reaching $10, it’s cheaper to bring lunch, too.

Curry is perfect for the purpose. It does have a smell, but it’s the kind that will have your officemates jealously wondering what you brought. It’s not too spicy, so you won’t spend the rest of the day smelling like it, and best of all — it has vegan and Paleo options to help you meet your other resolutions.

I borrowed most of this recipe from this one at Food52. The chickpeas were a last-second inspiration, but I love how they help stretch just a few chicken thighs into a meal that can feed you for at least three lunches. If you’re vegan, swap out the chicken for chickpeas and add the extra curry directly to the sauce. If you’re Paleo, swap out the chickpeas for extra chicken and maybe bump up the curry a little.

Whatever way you do it, it’s a delicious way to start the year off right.

Easy Chicken Curry
 
Author: Kate Wutz
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 20 mins
Total time: 30 mins
Serves: 4
A warm and comforting chicken curry with vegan and Paleo options that will help you stick to your New Year’s resolution of bringing lunch to work. Or, you know, just being an awesome cook.
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, pressed
  • 2 1/2 tsp curry powder, separated
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (omit if desired)
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp tomato paste
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into bize-sized pieces
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can full-fat coconut milk (make sure it’s thoroughly blended! Shake it up.)
  • White or cauliflower rice, if desired, for serving
Instructions
  1. Heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook for 6-8 minutes or until soft. Add the garlic and cook for another minute, then add 1 tsp curry powder, remaining spices, and tomato paste. Stir to combine.
  2. Toss chicken pieces in a plastic bag with the remaining 1 1/2 tsp curry powder and salt and pepper to taste. Add to pan and cook until they start to brown, about eight minutes. Add chickpeas about three minutes in.
  3. Once chicken in brown, pour in coconut milk and stir to combine. Simmer over medium-low heat for about ten minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. Serve with white or cauliflower rice, naan, or whatever your heart desires.
 
Notes
To make vegan, simply replace the chicken with another 15-ounce can of chickpeas. Add the extra 1 1/2 tsp curry to the onions with the rest of the spices.[br]To make Paleo, replace chickpeas with three more chicken thighs and continue as directed.

 

 

Roasted Chicken

paleo gluten-free roasted chicken

Making the perfect roasted chicken is one of those things that makes me feel like a real cook. You know, the type of person who can whip together a beautifully composed meal while looking, well, beautifully composed. Like a 1950s housewife, but without the apron. Or, hell, maybe with the apron. 

The thing is, a good roasted chicken is something that people think must be hugely complicated, but it’s not. You can make the best roasted chicken ever over three days, but you can make a perfectly decent roasted chicken in just about two hours on any night you have time. Though this might be a better weekend dish, it’s certainly possible to make this on a weeknight if you don’t mind eating late. (For an even quicker roasted chicken dinner, check out this recipe from my archives.)

In essence, the key is making sure your chicken is very, very dry. You probably want to sacrifice a few cloth dishtowels to making sure the chicken is as dry as you can make it. See, if your chicken skin isn’t dry, the skin will steam, becoming rubbery and gross. But when dry and salted, the skin becomes crisp and brown and incredibly flavorful, everything you want chicken skin to be. 

Feel free to experiment with this. It’s pared-down for a reason, and that reason is that I was deliberately trying to make the simplest roasted chicken recipe possible. But if you’re feeling fancy, tuck herbs under the chicken’s skin on the breasts, stuff the cavity with more herbs and a lemon, or get fancy with other spices rubbed in. Just make sure that skin is as dry as can be, and you’ll be happy with the results.

Roasted Chicken
 
Author: Kate Wutz
The easiest roast chicken recipe in the world. That’s it. Paleo, gluten-free.
Ingredients
  • 1 whole chicken, between 3 and 5 pounds
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced (optional)
  • 1 cup white wine (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 470 degrees.
  2. Rinse your chicken, take out the giblets and the neck and whatever else is in there. (I know, ew.) Rinse both outside and inside thoroughly, then place in a pile of either paper or cloth towels and dry very thoroughly. VERY thoroughly. So thoroughly. Pluck out any stray feather stubs, remove the giant fat deposit neat the tail, and salt liberally.
  3. Heat a 10-inch cast-iron skillet on the stove. Place chicken breast-side up in the skillet. It should sizzle just a little. Remove from heat, and insert in oven.
  4. After about 20 minutes, you should start to hear some crackling. If you don’t, turn up the heat. After 30 minutes, the top of the breast should be browning and starting to look awesome.
  5. Quickly flip the chicken, using either giant tongs or, as Michelle Tam does, the handle of a wooden spoon inserted in the cavity. Insert back in oven and cook for 25 minutes.
  6. Flip chicken again and roast for anywhere from 15 to 25 more minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted in the breast and thigh measures 170 degrees and the skin is a beautiful golden brown.
  7. Remove chicken from pan and allow to rest for about 15 minutes before serving. In the meantime, you can take your shallot and wine and place them in the cast-iron skillet with the chicken drippings and cook everything over medium-high heat until you have a nice pan sauce. Carve and serve.
 

 

Pumpkin Bison Chili

paleo gluten-free pumpkin bison chili 1

Forget Pumpkin Spice Lattes, okay? I mean, don’t completely forget about them, but when October hits, all I can think about is football food. And not that summery fresh corn soup I made a while ago — I mean rich, meaty Texas-style chili. 

Of course, this still is pumpkin week. So I guess you can think of this recipe as the Pumpkin Spice Latte of chili. There’s cinnamon and there’s pumpkin, but there’s also that incredible meatiness that only chili con carne has. Add spice from the peppers and a flavor bomb in the form of roasted pumpkin and pumpkin puree, and you have the quintessential fall meal that pairs perfectly with a side of college football. 

Oh yeah, and there’s bison meat. Don’t believe the naysayers — bison is amazing. It can be hard to cook with bison, as it really is leaner than beef and needs extra care. However, if you take the time to prepare it properly, it will reward you with incredible flavor — and, a friend of mine claims, the feeling of having been “punched by protein” (in a good way). 

As you can see, I topped this with cheese and sour cream. The dish itself is paleo, gluten-free, and dairy-free, but I would recommend adding a little sour cream or serving this with bread if that fits into your dietary restrictions. I actually heated up a few tortillas and used them as dippers, which was an excellent choice as well.

But serving suggestions aside, you need to make this chili or else your fall won’t be complete. Do it. 

Pumpkin Bison Chili
 
Author: Kate Wutz
Forget Pumpkin Spice Lattes — this Texas-style paleo and gluten-free pumpkin bison chili is the quintessence of fall. Go ahead, eat it. You know you want to.
Ingredients
  • 3 cups chopped, peeled pumpkin (deal with this like a butternut squash)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 pounds of ground bison
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, minced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, minced
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 1 or 2 red jalapenos, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 28-ounce can of diced tomatoes with their liquid
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup bone broth or water
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Toss pumpkin with olive oil, then spread on a foil-lined baking pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Roast in oven for 40 to 45 minutes, then remove from oven and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large stock pot or Dutch oven, brown the bison over medium-high heat. Salt and pepper, if you like. Once bison is nicely browned and no pink remains, drain the meat (if necessary) and set aside.
  3. In the same pan, sauté the peppers, onion, jalapeno, and garlic until tender, about eight minutes. Add bison and roasted pumpkin, and stir to incorporate.
  4. Add tomatoes (and juice), spices, broth or water, and pumpkin puree. Stir until combined. Bring to a boil, then lower heat, simmering for at least one hour.
  5. Serve with the chili accoutrements of your choice. Enjoy the taste of autumn.
 

 

 

 

Beef Stew with Mushrooms

gluten-free paleo beef stew mushrooms 1

There’s not much to say about this recipe except that it’s basically an excuse to buy an entire pound of shiitake mushrooms and eat them all in one delicious meal.

I mean, sure, there’s a rich tomato-based sauce. There’s a complex blend of flavors. There’s a long, slow simmering time that imitates braising, but with stew meat, cutting the time by two-thirds. And, best of all, you can serve it over everything from mashed parsnips to crusty sourdough bread or even thick homemade noodles (though the stew itself is gluten-free).

But really, all I can say is that you should make this. Make it this weekend, when you won’t be rushed and tempted to skimp on the simmering time and you can enjoy the delicious smells wafting all through your home.

gluten-free paleo beef stew mushrooms 2

Hint: close your closet/bedroom door unless you want to go to work on Monday smelling like beef—though your coworkers might oddly gravitate to you if you forget.

Beef Stew with Mushrooms
 
Author: Kate Wutz
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds of chuck stew meat (I always use Teton Waters)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • 2 ½ cups red wine
  • 2 ½ cups beef or bone broth
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 Tbsp fresh thyme
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 250. Heat olive oil in a heavy oven-proof pan over medium-high heat. Brown meat on all sides, then remove meat from the pan with a slotted spoon. Lower heat to medium and sautee the onions until translucent and soft, about six minutes.
  2. Add tomato paste and wine to the pan, then broth, garlic, and beef. Stir to combine. Remove from stove, and place in oven. Allow to simmer away in there for about an hour and forty minutes.
  3. Remove pan from oven and place back on the stove. Remove beef again with a slotted spoon. Turn heat to medium high and bring sauce to a boil. Allow to reduce slightly, then add mushrooms and fresh thyme. Simmer another 15 minutes.
  4. Return beef to pan, then serve over whatever starch you like. This can be made a day ahead and just reheated.
 

 

Sweet Potato Chips

sweet potato chips 1 vegan paleo gluten-free

Some would argue that the best snacks are cut fruits and vegetables. That’s fine. But I have never been one of those people. Even when I was doing a Whole30 last summer (an effort that failed spectacularly, by the way), I was one of Those People who snacked on dried fruit and nuts, which technically you’re supposed to limit.

So, snack food is pretty much a must for me sometimes. I think we all have those crispy chip cravings every once in a while, but the second you look at the list of ingredients on the back of even the most innocuous snack food (PopChips come to mind, with their maltodextrin and canola oil), you worry about what you’re putting into your body.

Continue reading

Minted Fruit Salad (Paleo, vegan, gluten-free)

minted fruit salad vegan paleo gluten-free

I didn’t think this was a recipe at first. However, I have a rule — if Ben likes it so much that he mentions how good something is more than three times, it probably should go on the blog.

He usually likes my cooking, but he often tolerates my healthier recipes more than he actually relishes them. Some things, like pistachio pesto, he just won’t eat; other recipes, like strawberry bars, he’ll eat, but not rave over. Others, like the oven-baked brisket, he won’t stop talking about for days.  Continue reading