Cooking Caveman with Jeff Nimoy

THESE ARE THE COOKING ADVENTURES OF JEFF NIMOY, AN LA WRITER WHO, WHILE DOING RESEARCH FOR A SCRIPT, STUMBLED UPON WHAT’S CALLED THE CAVEMAN DIET, ALSO KNOWN AS THE PALEO DIET. BASICALLY, IT’S EATING WHAT THE CAVEMEN ATE. HE TRIED IT OUT, AND THE RESULTS HAVE BEEN STAGGERING! THIS BLOG SHOWS EXACTLY HOW AND WHAT JEFF EATS. IF YOU’RE NEW TO THE BLOG, PLEASE START WITH THE “ENTERING THE CAVE” PAGE TO GET A CLEAR UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT.

Posts tagged pasture

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Happy Paleo Hanukah!

I made some of my paleo matzoh balls and pasture-raised chicken soup for Hanukah!  When I first experimented with the paleo matzoh balls, I used my almond butter flat bread recipe, and made the mistake of trying to make them like matzoh balls, when I should have made them like bread!  So now I bake them into paleo matzoh ball cupcakes, and they come out great.  Look:

Here are the recipes:

Chicken Soup

Paleo Matzoh Balls

Both recipes are also available in my eBook (if you still haven’t done all your Hanukah shopping).  ;)

Filed under paleo caveman Matzoh Ball chicken chicken soup parsnip carrot celery onions dill hanukah hanukkah organic pasture raised eggs pasture crossfit jewish jew

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Don’t Be Chicken, Eat Your Liver!

And then the chopped liver said, “What am I, Robert Redford?”

It’s Rosh Hashana again, the Jewish New Year, and this is my first attempt at making Chopped Liver, arguably the Jewiest of Jewish food!  I avoided this stuff like the plague as a child, watching as every adult relative wolfed the stuff down at a holiday gathering, and then spit it out unintentionally as they talked and argued.  Then one day as a teenager I decided to try new things, and at one such holiday gathering I realized, I LOVE CHOPPED LIVER!

It’s such a simple recipe and 100% paleo (if you use organic ingredients):

1 pound of pasture raised Chicken Livers
2 medium sized Onions, Caramelized
5 pasture raised hard boiled eggs

Black Pepper
Garlic Powder

Add sea salt if you want high blood pressure and dead taste buds.

You sauté the onions first and get them all caramelized.  This takes some time.  Maybe a half hour or longer.  Low to medium heat, occasionally stirring, so they don’t burn.

Once they’re done, slide the onions over and fry the chicken livers in the same pan.  I used my cast iron skillet.  Nicely brown one side of the livers, flip, and brown the other side.  Done.

Now, before I chopped it, I decided to experiment a little.  I had some eggplant chips made, as well as some sautéed chard with red jalapeño.  So I made up a little dish, by stacking them with the onions and liver:

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It looks better than it tasted (assuming you think it looks good).  It tasted great WITHOUT the liver, but I think I like chopped liver better than I like “liver liver.”

So I threw the liver, sautéed onions, and hard boiled eggs into the food processor until smooth (but not TOO smooth).

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I spread some on a piece of almond butter bread, and it tastes damn good!

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I put half the mixture in the freezer for another Jewish holiday, but I practically ate the other half already, so I might have to defrost it sooner rather than later.  Then again I need to save room, I have brisket coming tonight!  Ugga-Bugga!

Filed under rosh hashana chopped liver chicken liver paleo organic pasture caveman Jewish New Year paleo chopped liver recipe

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From The Caveman Archives: Wing Dings!

I know most of you could give a shit about SamePlate.com, and only read my blog for the food.  Fair enough.  Haven’t made anything lately with a wow factor to show you, so here’s an oldie but a goodie from December of 2010.  Have to make these again soon!  Enjoy!

December 10, 2010

Wing Dings!

You all know how much I love hot wings, but last time I made a classic buffalo wing, as well as wings with my now classic Plum Loco Sauce.  This time I was in the mood for what I used to call as a kid, “Wing Dings,” which are really only a fun way to say fried chicken wings.  I don’t know if any of you fat bastards out there have tried KFC’s hot wings, but that’s what I’m talking about, breaded wings, with a bite, that you eat with hot sauce.

This was a lot easier to make than I thought.  Or maybe it’s just that I’ve gotten to the point where these things are becoming easier.  This January 1st will be one year for me on the caveman diet, so hopefully, some lessons are sinking in.  First, I marinated the pasture raised chicken wings in herbs in spices all day.  I used (say it with me: all ingredients, all organic, all the time):

fresh rosemary

fresh thyme

dry sage

mustard powder

black pepper

garlic powder

onion powder

paprika

cayenne powder

Cut to hours later, when I made the hot sauce (again, see: Hot Wings 2 Ways).  It came out just as good as the first time or better!  The only difference is I used green jalapeno instead of red, because that’s what I had in the fridge.  Take a look at it:

Beautiful red color!  Tasted just like a Frank’s Red Hot or a Cholula or a Tapatio type of sauce, only incredibly fresher and non-processed!  I’m not gonna strain it like I thought to last time, but instead, I’m gonna puree it all in the blender and get it nice and smooth.  I’ll add some water to thin it out (and more lime juice and spice in the form of cayenne powder if it needs it).  (EDIT from Caveman of the Future.  This recipes been played with and improved, so check out the Recipes Page for more!)

And finally I made the wings themselves:

2 cup almond flour

1/4 cup arrowroot

3 tbls olive oil

3 eggs

garlic powder

onion powder

paprika

grass-fed beef fat (for frying)

Mix the eggs, oil, arrowroot, and one cup of almond flour into a batter.  In a separate bowl,  mix the dry spices and 1 cup of  almond flour.  Dip the wings in the batter, then into the dry almond flour mix, and then put them into the deep fryer (with animal fat because of it’s high burning point).

The only bad thing about this deep fryer is it’s small, so I could only cook about 6 wings parts at a time, and I had 24 of them (12 whole wings, cut into wings and drumettes), so at 8 minutes a batch, it took a while (next time I’ll just use my cast iron skillet).  But they came out great, look:

Gorgeous, no?  Gorgeous, YES!  A little hot sauce on those bad boys and they went down REAL GOOD!

While I had the deep fryer going, I decided to make a delicata squash into mock sweet potato fries as a side dish.  If you remember the first time I made them (see: http://cookingcaveman.tumblr.com/post/1647714032/pumpkin-pie-kale-salad-and-coconut-shrimp-redux) I baked them in the oven, with nothing but a little olive oil drizzled on them.  I threw them in the deep fryer this time, and for some reason, hot oil started overflowing from the fryer all over my counter top and onto my kitchen floor.  Ug.  ”Ug” is caveman for “oy.”  Once I got things back under control (and not looking forward to the clean up afterwards), I cooked them in small batches (literally three or four at a time), and that seemed to do it.  But again, it took forever!  Was it worth it?  You tell me:

They were good, but truthfully, they were better from the oven because they were more crispy from the oven, and less oily!  So, another experiment goes bad, oh well, you live, you learn, but either way, you eat.  And usually you eat pretty well too if you’re eating in my cave.  Ugga-Bugga!

Filed under paleo caveman organic crossfit pasture chicken wings hot sauce Almond Flour Arrowroot wing dings cooking

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Friday Night Chicken is Back!

Last night was paleo Southern Fired Chicken, served with Southern Style Greens, and my homemade Caveman Hot Sauce (not pictured).  Jalapeños are in season and I’m taking advantage!

I have a few versions of paleo fried chicken on my Recipes Page, but this one is a new preparation for me.  I saw a piece on Food Network on a Saratoga Springs, NY restaurant, Hattie’s, famous for their fried chicken, and my mouth was watering, so I gave their recipe a try.  The chef sprinkled on his dry rub (a recipe handed down from the original owners of long ago), and let the chicken marinate in that for 2 days.  Then when it was time to cook, he just dredged it with flour, and fried.  No egg wash!  I like this because it’s easy, and after all, you know deep down inside, I’m a (say it with me) lazy bastard.  And seasoning the flour always drives me crazy, because I never know how much flour to use, and I wind up ultimately always running out before the last few pieces are coated, having to make a new batch, while my hands are filthy with clumped chicken coating!

So I marinated it in:

Olive Oil
Paprika
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder
Dry Sage
Dry Rosemary
Dry Thyme
Cayenne Pepper
Celery Seed
Mustard Powder
Black Pepper

And then when it was time to fry, I coated it in unseasoned coconut flour (all ingredients, all organic, all the time).  I’ve switched from almond flour to coconut flour over the years, because it’s healthier due to the better omega-6 ratios, and it binds better, although it doesn’t have as much crunch as almond flour (and almond flour would definitely need an egg wash to bind to the chicken).

I cast iron fried it in grass-fed beef kidney fat (pasture raised animal fat is perfect for frying, due to its high smoke point, and high levels of healthy Omega-3 fat) until nicely browned, and then finished it in a 400 degree oven for about 10-15 minutes on each side.

It was delicious, but not as crispy as I thought it would get.  Kind of like KFC’s original recipe as compared to their extra crispy.  Not that I’m complaining, I prefer original recipe, I just thought I was making extra crispy, so I wasn’t prepared for the results.  Still, it’s a very easy prep, and if I’m not looking for a crunchy crispier skin, I’d make it they was again in a heart beat.

And the greens were fantastic.  This version had:

Collards
Kale
Chard
Jalapeños
Yellow Onion
Sliced Garlic
Olive Oil
Lemon Juice
Black Pepper

So easy to make, just threw it all into a pot, and let it cook until tender (but not too tender, still had some bite to it, which is how I love it).  Here’s a better look at the greens:

Ugga-Bugga! 

Filed under paleo caveman crossfit organic southern fried chicken Greens collard greens kale chard Jalapeño jalapeno dry rub coconut hattie's saratoga springs grass-fed pasture cast iron

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The Paleo Bread Search is Officially Over!

(EDIT from the Caveman of the Future!!!! I have found a NEW bread recipe that’s even better than this one! Although, in a pinch, this recipe will work, check out this article to see an even better one!)

I’m declaring this last batch of almond butter bread as the winner of my 2+ years searching for a decent paleo bread substitute.  The first time I made it, I still had some problems (like it kept falling apart), but I tweaked the recipe, and now I finally have a bread that is tasty, doesn’t fall apart, and for the very first time, tastes as good toasted as it does NOT toasted (previously, it was only enjoyable toasted).  As evidenced here by this tuna and avocado sandwich (all organic):

imageFantastic to have sandwiches again!  You don’t realize how many sandwiches one actually eats on a modern diet until you give up bread!  Well, now paleo has bread too, proving once again, dieting does not mean deprivation!  Perfect for people on gluten-free diets.  For those with almond allergies though, not so perfect (sorry, but I hear good things about cauliflower bread if you want to look it up on your own, you almond allergic lazy bastards).

Here’s my tweaked recipe for the perfect loaf of paleo-ish bread (based on a 9x5x3 loaf pan or slightly smaller):

4 or 5 pasture raised eggs (depending on the size, if they’re huge, use 4, if small, use 5)
1 1/2 cups of organic almond butter
1 1/2 tablespoons of organic lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon of baking soda (which turns it from paleo to paleo-ish).

Bake at 350 for 30-60 minutes, depending on oven shitiness.

And that’s it.  I was again amazed at how such a thick substance like almond butter could get such a fluffy rise in a bread, but it works!

Any future attempts at banana bread, and french toast will now start and end with this recipe. The search is finally over!  The Caveman Minions can now all let out a collected sigh of relief, and exclaim throughout the land, “The Bread is dead, long live the Bread!”  Or as we say in Caveman speak, “Ugga-Bugga!”

EDIT FROM CAVEMAN OF THE FUTURE:

Check out this video I made on how to make this bread:

Filed under almond butter bread pasture paleo pasture raised eggs caveman organic crossfit

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Paleo Tuna On Toast

Sometimes it’s the simplest things that make me happy. A return to childhood for a tunafish sandwich on toasted white bread, a staple in my house for years. But now that I’m an adult caveman, instead of an unhealthy young kid, always sick (and when I was healthy I was pretending to be sick to get out of school), so my tastes have remained, but my choices have matured.

Instead of white bread, I now use almond butter bread, gluten-free, and quite delicious when toasted. This batch does not fall apart, so I guess using an extra egg helps binding (click the link to see what I’m talking about). Instead of Hellmon’s mayonnaise, I made mayonnaise, something I never thought I’d ever do as long as I lived! And the tuna is wild caught, which it probably was when I was a kid too, but only because they didn’t have tuna farms back then. I also added avocado, which I never saw in Brooklyn until I moved to California in 1988. Tuna and avocado are a perfect combo! And finally I added a leaf of lettuce, which I did see in Brooklyn, only this one is organic (like all food used to be). In fact, this whole sandwich is organic (like all food used to be).

By the way, the fact I only eat organic, and don’t eat grains, or dairy, or legumes (like the soybean oil they use in Hellmon’s and Best Foods), and only pasture raised eggs, is the number one reason I haven’t had a cold since starting paleo at the beginning of 2010. My grandfather used to call me a snot nose kid when I talked back to him, but if I was raised paleo (and therefore “snot-less”) he would’ve had to come up with a new insult back then. “You healthy wise-ass,” might have been a good choice.

My tuna salad changes every time, depending on what I have in the fridge. This time I added chopped heirloom tomato, cucumber, celery, red onion, cilantro, homemade mayo, black pepper, garlic powder, thyme, dill, oregano, lemon juice, and crushed red pepper. Yummy and Ugga-Bugga-licious!

Filed under paleo caveman organic crossfit tuna sandwich avocado almond butter bread pasture

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I don’t always eat breakfast…

…but when I do, I prefer paleo.  Pasture raised over easy egg, with broken runny yolk, on toasted almond butter bread with homemade caveman ketchup.  You can see I lost a chunk of the bread while toasting, but enough stayed together for a breakfast sandwich.  I’ll have to make more wild boar breakfast sausages soon, that would have put this sandwich over the top.

Filed under paleo caveman organic crossfit almond butter bread ketchup pasture egg eggs bread breakfast

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Paleo Breakfast Sausage!

"What do you mean?  Isn’t sausage made of pork, which makes it paleo?"  No, Cave-hole, most pork products come from pigs that are not healthy because they’re fed all kinds of crap.  Even the cleanest pasture raised pigs I’ve found are still given some supplemental feed that a pig would never eat in the wild.  But at the Broken Arrow Ranch the wild boar roam freely, eating what they forage.  Then they’re killed humanely, without stress, so the meat has no gaminess to it.  Wild animals are leaner, healthier, and what fat they do have is rich in Omega-3 (just like wild salmon and all wild animals).  And I’m not even touching the other ingredients in most store bought breakfast sausages, like all the added chemicals, sugars, and salt (tons!), which makes them very un-paleo!  READ LABELS!

But these sausages are pure, toxic free, and completely organic.

Ground Wild Boar
Fresh Sage
Fresh Thyme
Fresh Rosemary
Black Pepper
Onion Powder
Garlic Powder
Paprika
Cinnamon
Nutmeg
Olive Oil
Touch of honey (optional)

Hand roll them into links, or make patties, then brown them in a cast iron skillet and they’re done!  I served it with a pasture raised sunny egg to dip in (cooked in the sausage fat, yum), and some homemade Caveman Ketchup.  You can even use them to make some paleo Thanksgiving stuffing!  This sausage is boaring, but not boring!  Ugga-Bugga!

I have 5 pounds of ground wild boar to experiment with (the only size package they’ll sell ground wild boar, but believe me, I’ll use it all!).  Gonna make some spicy Italian sausage and meatballs in marinara sauce soon!  Can’t wait!

Filed under paleo caveman ketchup pasture eggs italian sausage wild boar wild game Broken Arrow Ranch toxins sage thyme rosemary pork organic crossfit

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Hash Tag: #Stressed Out!

Life is stressful these days for the Caveman, just like it is for the rest of the country.  And my poor eating choices of late have all been stress related.  My older readers know, I am definitely a stress eater (see here for my earlier article on stress eating)!  The worse things get, the more I eat, usually looking for comfort foods to soothe my soul, but in actuality, after eating them they make you feel worse (there’s actually science behind the reason for this, but this isn’t that article, so wait for me to write it, or look it up yourselves, you lazy bastards).

But the other day, after an afternoon of popcorn and pizza, I stopped myself 3 times from picking up the phone and ordering Chinese food (I even dialed once and hung up), and forced myself to cook something from my refrigerator, which only contains organic paleo food!  And lo and behold something miraculous happened.  As soon as I began cooking, my stress levels plummeted, and I calmed the fuck down.  Why, I wondered?  I figured out that it’s a control issue.  I’ve always heard the phrase, “I don’t worry about things I can’t control,” but actually, that’s the shit I worry about, for exactly that reason!  Shit I CAN control, I don’t worry about, because I know at least my fate rests in my hands.  And cooking is a way to TAKE CONTROL!  I’m not relying on anyone but myself for the outcome.  So from now on, when things are spinning out of control, I’m going to stop the stress by seizing something I CAN control, like cooking, or writing a blog, or going for a walk (my workout of choice lately due to some knee injuries and advanced-age-itis).  If you’re like me, the next time you reach for the speed dial of your favorite Chinese restaurant, take control of something.

By the way, this is what I cooked:

Pasture raised Egg, with some hash made of rutabaga, onions, carrots, onion, garlic, fresh rosemary, fresh thyme, black pepper, olive oil (all organic).  Will work with any root veggie.  You will never miss potatoes again!  Except when seeing someone eat these babies from the L.A. landmark the Apple Pan (my last cheat meal).

Apple Pan good, but Caveman back on paleo wagon!  Ugga-Bugga!

Filed under paleo hash crossfit organic caveman pasture eggs rutabaga root

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Omelette for Dinner!

100% organic, 100% paleo, and salt-free!  3 pasture raised eggs, Swiss chard, mushrooms, scallions, garlic, black pepper.  I was gonna start adding herbs and spices, but it didn’t need it.  When you use fresh organic ingredients, you don’t need to do much to get incredible flavor!  Swiss chard is naturally salty, so I didn’t miss the salt at all!  I like to leave the center a little runny, which replaces the texture of the missing melted cheese.  Without a doubt, the best omelette I ever had!  Ugga-Bugga!

Filed under organic caveman paleo crossfit omellete pasture swiss chard mushrooms scallions garlic eggs

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Apricot Chicken!

Phenomenal!  I finally found a farmer who only feeds their pasture raised chickens sunflower sprouts (the only pasture raised chicken farmer near me prior to this one fed their birds soy and corn).  It’s nice to have chicken back on the menu!

I marinated it in my paleo apricot sauce (my freezer is now empty of all 2011 spring and summer delicacies and I’m ready to start on the 2012 batches) for 48 hours, and then I stuck a peeled orange (pierced with a fork about a million times) in the cavity of the 3.5 pound bird (A peach or lemon work great too).  Then, drizzled it with olive oil for a nice crispy skin and roasted it breast side down (see my post on French Roasted Chicken for more cooking tips) on 375 for an hour (rotating in my oven for even cooking), then brushed the brown crispy skin with some more apricot sauce, flipped it over breast side up, drizzled olive oil and roasted for another 30 minutes.  Rotated it in the oven again, and brushed on final glaze of apricot sauce, roasting for the last 30 minutes.

That orange inside released it’s juices and the chicken was flavorful and MOIST!  It tasted incredible.  If you’re a skin freak like me, this one is a keeper!  And this batch of apricot sauce was particularly spicy!  I think I used habanero instead of jalapeno, I can’t remember, but all I know is I’m out of spicy hot sauces until peppers come back in season this summer.  It’s gonna be a bland spring for my fiery palette.  :(

Filed under apricot chicken roasted chicken paleo caveman organic crossfit pasture habanero jalapeno