Sunday, February 27, 2011

Your Guide to Paleo Cooking

The blogosphere is filled with people who are passionate about their health, fitness and food. But in the niche segment of the paleo lifestyle, there are tons of brilliant and knowledgeable people contributing to a flourishing community. Everyone is here to interact, share and learn (with varying degrees of each). And while we may only know each other by our online personas this is the first time I have ever truly felt part of a tribe. Our common interests bond us, and being able to share my experiences and relate to others has peeked my interest in the field of health and nutrition. 

It’s great to talk about the more popular bloggers such as Mark Sisson or Robb Wolf, the latter of which got me turned on to the paleo diet. But the community has much more depth than that. As I dive deeper into this subculture, I am continuously finding everyday people doing spectacular things. Over the past few months I have been fortunate enough to interact some of these great people. 

One such blogger in the paleo community is Sébastien Noël over at Paleo Lifestyle Diet. Sébastien is a gifted writer, but where he really shines are his recipes. A few weeks ago, I was given a copy of his newly released eBook to review, and I must say that I am very impressed. I have a ton of cookbooks, but this was my first electronic cookbook. I was a little intimidated, because the PDF is 395 pages - that's a lot of recipes. I thought about going to staples to print out a copy, but a color copy of his recipe book would have been over $200 (c’mon staples).

Don’t Be Afraid of the eBook
Usually, while reading, I like things printed and in my hands, but having an online version makes the recipe book very searchable. It is easy to reference and browse recipes. I just typed in what food I had and the search showed me all the recipes containing my ingredient. In addition, Sébastien did a great job with the organization; the book is broken down by category and really well layed out. The design of the PDF is clean, easy to read, and aesthetically pleasing.

As far as taste goes, I'm not sure I could speak any higher of Sébastien. I made his Beanless Texas Style Chili that blows away Mark Sisson's Bison Chili. The great thing about his recipes is that they are simple. Most have less than 10 ingredients and he doesn't use anything that you'll have to find at an uber fancy grocery store. The combination of spices just work.

I also tried his Pork Chops with Apple and Onions and his Guacamole recipe both with success. But the one that really won over me over was his Baked Salmon with Asparagus and Roasted Beets. My mom made this the other night, and the salmon was so tasty my dad could not stop taking about it. The fish was so moist it almost melted in your mouth, and the asparagus was perfectly crispy. The beets came out a little undercooked, but the rest of the meal made up for that. I will definitely be cooking that again.

Just Try It
All in all, my family and I have loved cooking with Sébastien's recipes. He makes them very easy and approachable, but that doesn't mean they lack flavor. Check out his website where he has a ton of free recipes to try like Sweet Potato And Sausage Soup, Spicy Pulled Pork, Kale Chips, and a ton more. If you like what you see then take a look at his eBook where he compiles over 350 recipes, as well as cooking tips, a meal plan, and an herbs and spices guide (that is beautifully designed). Sébastien is doing great work over at his blog, so I am happy to recommend his recipes. They are simply delicious.