I’d like to start out by telling you, the reader, a little bit about why I eat mostly Paleo. A few years ago, my body decided it had enough of everything that I was feeding it, and I began to get sick. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and a few years later, fibromyalgia. If you know anything about autoimmune diseases, you know that autoimmunity is a process in which our body’s own immune system attacks “us”. Changing the way I eat was not just a “diet” or a fad; it became a way of life. So that being said, the holidays can be quite tricky. I have been testing out different recipes for a year now, and I am very pleased with the results. My body finally re-set itself back to the original factory settings. So I am pleased to offer you these recipes and I hope that you’ll give one or two of them a try!
Turkey: As we go out-of-town for Thanksgiving, the turkey is always prepared by the hostess. But we did stay home one year and decided to try a brine like this one! What I liked best about this recipe from Recipes to Nourish, is that they use things a girl like me already has on hand! I buy my Himalayan pink salt from good ole’ Trader Joe’s and I always have Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar (with the mother y’all) hanging around my house. I use raw honey anyway, and rosemary, well, I love rosemary and my mom grows it, so we dry it for the winter. Anyway, a good tip about the brine method is: Brine 1 hour for every pound of turkey, do not go over that time frame.
Acorn Squash: I have been saving two acorn squash for next week. So, here is the recipe I can’t wait to try. Note: I am cheating. I love to cheat in the kitchen and do things that make prep time faster. It is perfectly legal. Do not feel like the “I caught you using a box of something” police are coming over to your meal. Again, while paleo is about unprocessed, yes, it is also about reading ingredients for me to see what sets off my attacks. Because you guys can probably eat that delicious fresh bread called Rustic bread, save yours for this recipe! I sadly cannot. So I pinned this recipe knowing full well I was going to change it. It is Acorn Squash with Apple, Cranberry & Sausage stuffing from Happily Unprocessed. Allergy change for me is that I already bought Trader Joe’s Gluten-Free (yes!) stuffing mix. I plan on following the directions for stove top, making the stuffing, then taking half, putting pork sausage with sage, add apples, cranberries, butter, and following the rest of the recipe for the squash and stuffing them to bake. THEN, my mom, who was worried about making stuffing for everyone except me, does not have to worry.
Sweet Potatoes: Did you know? Their rich orange color indicates that they are high in carotenoids like beta carotene and other carotenoids, which is the precursor to vitamin A in your body. Eat good things for your body and feel better. So, I was super excited the first time I found Autoimmune recipes on Pinterest. I found this recipe a while back for Easy Hasselback Sweet Potatoes but I was going to edit the recipe a tad. After you have sliced the potatoes, but not all the way through, and you have rubbed them with olive oil, and then stuck butter in between if you want, wait until the very last 30 mins, and top with apples and…bacon!!! One thing Paleo people love is bacon. Again, I have a cheat. I’m sorry. But it’s so yummy. And you guessed correctly, I get it from Trader Joe’s. It is Trader Joe’s Uncured Applewood Smoked Bacon…fully cooked! Anyway, yum.
Cranberry Salad: One thing is for sure; you either LOVE cranberries or hate them. I love them so here is something easy to make with fresh cranberries. If you prefer to watch that chunk of gelatinous blob plop out, it’s ok. It is fun to play with. And my husband will ahem, only eat it that way. Sigh. Anyway, so I make the other stuff for me! All you need are fresh cranberries, 1 navel orange, and maple syrup, another thing I always have on hand since I stopped eating white sugar. This is one of the easiest recipes yet. So you know I love it. It’s from Paleo Gone Sassy. How awesome is it that you can put everything in a food processor, just 3 ingredients, and hit pulse the night before, and it’s done! Place in fridge and the next day, take out when ready. Talk about awesome. I love night before recipes!!!
Pumpkin Pie: Okay, so in searching for recipes, this lady cracked me up with her meme on the side, plus she knows what she is talking about. I have researched for a long time on the autoimmune protocol, but I wasn’t going to get into that here. She does talk about it briefly, so if you eat AIP, which is another version of paleo and honestly, ahem, sigh, more how I eat because it’s necessary, you might want to read this version of what she calls “EASY” haha, mini-pumpkin pies. I like her because she says all the right things for people who are new to AIP eating and she talks about avoiding flares, which I actually have to do. I know this is complicated, but many members understand! All that being said, here’s something much easier and the best part is, my kids will eat this! Paleo Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes from a great blog called My Whole Food Life. This blog is really cool too because her readers can ask for other versions and she listens (like in this recipe where she took out the flour and refined sugars). Again, I always have things like coconut sugar, you know who carries it, and coconut flour, again, my bud Trader Joe’s has the cheapest, and if you want to whip things up in a hurry, these are baking staples. Whew. Now I am starving!!!
I hope you enjoyed my Paleo Thanksgiving menu and that you learned something new in the process. I have been researching for a long time, but there are always recipes I might have missed out there. Feel free to let me know where you get your Paleo recipes!