Slow Cooker Lamb Osso Buco

osso bucoby Karen Frazier

Several years ago, I came into possession of some cross-cut veal shanks, so I made Jim osso buco. He was immediately enamored, and it is one of his top requested meals. Of course, veal isn’t necessarily so easy to get where I live, but lamb is. Recently I picked up some pastured cross-cut lamb shanks, and I decided to adapt my osso buco recipe for the slow cooker, and for lamb. With an orange gremolata stirred in at the end, it’s really delicious.

Lamb Osso Buco

  • 4 pastured (grass fed) cross-cut lamb shanks
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 large organic carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, sliced
  • 1 stalk of organic celery, sliced
  • 1 can (14 ounces) organic diced tomatoes, drained
  • Juice of 1/2 an orange
  • 3 sprigs of thyme
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
  • 1 bunch Italian parsley, washed, dried, and finely chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • Zest of one orange, finely grated
  1. In the crock of a slow cooker, combine lamb, onion, carrots, garlic, celery, tomatoes, orange juice, thyme, salt, and pepper. Cover and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours, or on high for 4 to 5 hours.
  2. After the osso buco is cooked, remove the lid and turn the slow cooker up to high. Allow to simmer, uncovered, for an additional 30 to 60 minutes to thicken the sauce.
  3. Meanwhile, combine the parsley, cloves, and orange zest with a pinch of sea salt. Stir into the osso buck just before serving.

photo credit: Micaiena via photopin cc


Wine and Horseradish Braised Short Ribs with Caramelized Onion Cauliflower Mash

short ribby Karen Frazier

Jim went to his cardiologist yesterday and got the go ahead for his primal diet. I was thrilled, because some doctors don’t like it that much. I’m glad to know my instincts were decent in this case. So tonight, I’m making use of my slow cooker and some grass fed, organic primal cut short ribs we picked up. I’m braising them in red wine and horseradish sauce, and turning the braising liquid into a gravy with which to top the cauliflower. I’m trying to give Jim non-primal flavors with a good health payoff.

There’s some controversy in the paleo world about red wine. Some people have it. Some don’t. If you know Jim and me, then you know we are wine enthusiasts. So I’m cooking with it tonight. It’s a sometimes thing instead of an every night indulgence now.

Jim has been so careful about following his diet that I wanted to make him something delicious, and I think this qualifies. Plus, I wanted to experiment with paleo gravy techniques.

Slow Cooker Wine and Horseradish Braised Short Ribs with Caramelized Onion Cauliflower Mash

For the short ribs:

  • 3 slices pastured sugar-free bacon (we get ours at US Wellness Meats), cut into pieces
  • 2 three-rib slabs of grass fed organic beef short ribs, cut into individual ribs
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 pound organic cremini mushrooms
  • 1 pound organic baby carrots or 4 large carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 sprigs organic fresh thyme
  • 2 sprigs organic fresh rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons organic prepared horseradish (or more to taste)
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 5 cloves garlic, finely minced or through a garlic press
  1. Season the ribs with sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper and place in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  2. Brown the bacon in a skillet over medium-high heat until the fat is rendered. Using a slotted spoon, put the bacon in the slow cooker. Set aside the bacon fat for the caramelized onions and cauliflower you’ll make later.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker and stir. Cook, covered, on low for 8 to 10 hours or high for five hours.
  4. When the meat has cooked, remove it from the cooking liquid with tongs and set aside on a platter.
  5. Using a slotted spoon or skimmer, remove all of the vegetables from the cooking liquid and place them in a food processor. Remove the thyme and rosemary branches and throw them away.
  6. Leaving the top slot of the food processor open so steam can escape, puree the vegetables until smooth. Stir them back into the cooking liquid in the slow cooker until the liquid thickens.
  7. Return the meat to the cooking liquid and reduce heat to keep warm while you prepare the cauliflower.

For the cauliflower:

  • 2 tablespoons pastured bacon fat
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 heads organic cauliflower, broken into small florets
  • 2 tablespoons of reserved bacon fat (or, if you’re not allergic to dairy like me, substitute pastured butter or another animal fat such as lard or duck fat)
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
  1. In a large saute pan, heat the bacon fat over medium heat until it melts.
  2. Add the onions in a single layer in the pan. Reduce the heat to medium-low.
  3. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are reduced and caramelized, about 45 minutes.
  4. In a large pot, cover the cauliflower with water. Cover the pot and set it on the stove to boil on high heat until the cauliflower is soft, 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. Drain the cauliflower well and allow it to sit in the colander for a few minutes to remove as much liquid as possible.
  6. Transfer the cauliflower and caramelized onions to the food processor. Add one to two tablespoons of butter, bacon fat, or some other fat. Process until smooth. Be sure to leave the top slot of the food processor open so the steam can escape.
  7. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Now, serve the meat and gravy over the mashed cauliflower. Delicious, I promise!

A bit about my food processor warning. When I was a little kid, my mom was pureeing hot lentil soup in the food processor. It went boom and wound up all over the kitchen ceiling. My mom was lucky she didn’t get burned by the scalding hot soup.

When blending hot foods in a blender or food processor, steam build up can cause hot liquid and food to force its way out of the top of the processor. It can blow the lid clean off a blender. The best way to protect yourself is to open the chute at the top of the blender or food processor as you blend. Then, fold a towel several times and place it on top of the blender or processor. Place your hand on top of the towel to hold the lid in place. The towel will protect your hand. Finally, don’t stick your face right over the top of the open chute, just in case. Open the lid cautiously after blending hot  foods.

So – when I mentioned I was making mashed cauliflower on Facebook, I got some negative feedback about it. Apparently it’s a love it or hate it kind of food. I like it. With this, the caramelized onions really do mellow the flavor, and the bacon fat (if you use it) adds a lovely smokiness. Still – if you just can’t see yourself eating mashed cauliflower, consider another mashed paleo-friendly food such as celeriac or sweet potatoes.

photo credit: via photopin cc

Country Style Spare Ribs with Apples, Cabbage, and Fennel

porkby Karen Frazier

Things are about to take a turn here at Recipes for My Kids. As you may have already noted, I often include gluten-free and dairy-free recipes because I have celiac disease and a casein allergy. While the kids were still at home, I went ahead and prepared their favorites that contained dairy and gluten anyway. The result was that I cross-contaminated myself frequently, and often wound up feeling very ill.

Now Tanner is off to college, and Kevin is only here one or two weekends per month. When Tanner left about a month ago for college, I realized it was the perfect time to turn my kitchen into a gluten-free, dairy-free mecca. I meticulously cleaned the entire kitchen, removing all traces of gluten or dairy that had accumulated in drawers and cupboards over the years. I purchased new gluten-free cookware and utensils. I designated a small counter and a single cupboard the spot for preparation of gluten-containing foods like sandwiches or toasts, and implemented very specific cleaning protocols so if someone made a gluten-containing food, it didn’t cross over into my pristine area. Even the freezer has a designated gluten area (the bottom shelf), and the kids have a refrigerator up in their room if they want to store some gluten-containing food when they are home.

As a result, I started feeling better than I had in years. With even the tiniest traces of gluten and dairy cross-contamination removed from my home, the years of symptoms I’d experienced such as exhaustion and digestive discomfort went away. Clearly I was on the right track.

With dairy and gluten grains off the table, my ultimate plan was to move in the direction of an ancestral style diet that didn’t contain any grains, processed foods, industrial seed oils, chemicals, processed sugar, or processed salt. My plan was to move into a more ancestral way of eating gradually. Then, about a week after Tanner left for school, Jim had a heart attack. I decided at that moment it was time to truly revamp his diet and mine in order to protect his heart health in the future.

Today, just four weeks later, my kitchen is a very different place. I cook every meal from scratch – all aspects of it – and I make it without grains, processed foods, or industrial seed oils. Jim has already lost 15 pounds in about two weeks, and his health is the best I have seen it in quite some time. We’re lucky because his heart attack was very mild. It served as a wake-up call to both of us.

Because I’m cooking so much, I’ve come up with a few strategies to give myself a break so I’m not in the kitchen constantly. For example, I typically make enough in each meal so that we get two dinners out of it, as well as something for the freezer. That way, on nights I don’t feel like cooking, I’ve got food in the freezer that can easily be thawed and reheated.

I’m also using my slow cooker. A lot. When it’s not in use cooking meals, I’ve got it simmering with a bone broth or stock to use in recipes. To make the stocks, I use bones and trimmings from meat, carrots, onions, celery, garlic, and herbs. I simmer it for 12 to 24 hours depending on the type of bones and freeze it so I have it on hand whenever I want to make a quick soup.

So – this is a very long way of saying this. You’ll notice things changing here on the blog. All recipes from this point forward (unless I’m getting in the way back machine and pulling out a favorite recipe from the past) are both gluten-free and dairy-free. More likely than not, they’ll also be grain-free and contain lots of healthy plant foods and pastured ingredients. Some may call it paleo. Some may call it primal. But I just call it delicious. So here’s the first paleo recipe. Enjoy!

Country Style Spare Ribs with Apples, Cabbage, and Fennel

  • 2 sweet tart organic apples (such as honey crisp), peeled, cored, and sliced
  • 1 organic fennel bulb, thinly sliced
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup raw apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • Dash cayenne
  • 2 pounds pastured country style pork spare ribs
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
  • 1 small green organic cabbage, cut into small pieces
  1. In a large slow cooker, combine the apples, fennel, onion, garlic, apple cider vinegar, chicken stock, cinnamon, thyme, and cayenne. Stir to combine.
  2. Season the pork with sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper. Add to the slow cooker and stir to combine with the vegetables and apples.
  3. Cover and cook on low for 8 to ten hours, or on high for five hours.
  4. An hour before serving, stir in the cabbage. Cover and continue to cook on low for an additional hour.

Steak Tacos

steak taco

by Karen Frazier

I love a good steak taco on a fresh corn tortilla with guacamole and pico di gallo over the top. It’s so delicious and relatively simple to make. If you’ve never made your own corn tortillas, they are totally worth the effort, and they’re pretty easy to do. Just purchase a simple cast iron tortilla press for under $20, and you’ll suddenly find all sorts of reasons to make fresh corn tortillas.

Note: Since we have started eating paleo, I still use the basic steak marinade recipe, but we skip the corn tortillas. Instead, we wrap the steak and guacamole in tender butter lettuce leaves for a delicious taco.

Steak Tacos

  • 1 (16 ounce) flat iron steak
  • 6 scallions, roots removed and roughly chopped (including green parts)
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 recipe corn tortillas (recipe follows) (omit for paleo/whole30)
  • 1 recipe guacamole
  • 1 recipe pico di gallo (recipe follows)
  • Butter lettuce leaves (for paleo or whole30)
  1. Prick the flat iron steak with a fork several times on both sides and season it with salt and pepper. Put the flat iron steak in a large zipper bag.
  2. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the scallions, garlic, jalapeño, cilantro, salt, lime juice, and olive oil. Pulse the food processor for 10 to 20 one-second pulses, until the vegetables and herbs are finely chopped. Set aside one tablespoon of this mixture and refrigerate in a small container.
  3. Scrape the remaining herb mixture into the bag with the flat iron steak. Squeeze the bag to distribute the herb paste so it completely covers the steak. Refrigerate the steak and allow it to marinade for about three hours.
  4. When you’re ready to assemble the tacos, scrape the herb paste off of the steak and discard it. In a large sauté pan (I use cast iron) set on medium high, heat some olive oil until it shimmers. Add the steak and cook three to four minutes per side for medium rare. Set the cooked meat aside tented with foil while you prepare the tortillas and pico di gallo.
  5. Cut the meat on the bias into thin strips. Put the warm strips of meat in a bowl and toss with the reserved herb paste.
  6. To assemble, place the meat on the corn tortillas or lettuce leaves. Top with a dollop of guacamole and some pico di gallo.

Corn Tortillas

  • 1 3/4 cup masa harina
  • 1 1/8 cup water
  • Pinch salt
  • Juice of one lime
  1. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients until the form a ball of dough.
  2. Separate the dough into 15 equal sized balls and cover them with a damp cloth.
  3. Working one ball at a time, press it on the tortilla press (or roll it out into a thin tortilla shape).
  4. Heat a cast iron pan over medium heat. Cook the tortillas one at a time, about three minutes per side until. Wrap the tortillas in a towel to keep them warm until you are ready to serve them.

Pico di Gallo

  • 1 large heirloom tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1/2 jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
  • Dash salt
  • Juice of one lime

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl.

photo credit: calamity_hane

Potato Soup with Italian Sausage, White Beans, and Kale

soupThis hearty soup makes a delicious meal. When I first made it, I had fresh garlic scapes available, which was really tasty. Unfortunately, garlic scapes are only available about one month out of the year, so I’ve adapted the recipe for use with any garlic. If at all possible, use fresh, in-season garlic that hasn’t yet been cured. I have also made the recipe gluten-free by using masa harina (corn flour used to make corn tortillas). I find masa harina has a very clean flavor that is similar to wheat flour. Some other gluten-free flours add off flavors to soups and stews, but the masa harina does not. You can substitute any other gluten-free flour if you wish, or add all-purpose flour if you don’t have any problems with gluten. To make the soup dairy-free, as well, use your favorite non-dairy milk in place of the heavy cream and either use clarified butter or a clean-tasting oil that works well at high-temperatures, such as grape seed oil.

Potato Soup with Italian Sausage, White Beans, and Kale

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 pounds bulk sweet Italian sausage
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 bunch kale, stemmed and cut into bite sized pieces
  • 5 cloves garlic, through a press
  • 1/4 cup masa harina (or all-purpose flour for non-gluten-free)
  • 5 cups chicken stock
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 (14 ounce) can white beans, drained
  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
  1. In a large pot, heat butter on medium-high until it bubbles. Add the sausage and cook, crumbling as you cook, until it browns. Remove the cooked sausage from the pot with a slotted spoon and set it aside on a platter.
  2. Add the onion and carrots to the fat that remains in the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to brown, about six minutes.
  3. Add the kale and cook, stirring frequently, until it softens, about three more minutes.
  4. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until it is fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  5. Add the masa harina and cook, stirring constantly, for two minutes.
  6. Add the chicken stock. Use the side of the spoon to scrape any browned bits from the bottom of the pot as you add the stock.
  7. Add the red pepper blames, onion powder, garlic powder, beans, and potatoes. Return the sausage to the soup, adding the juices that have collected on the platter, as well.
  8. Bring the pot to a simmer and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer the soup until the potatoes soften, about 10 minutes.
  9. Stir in the cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Ham and Cheese Crescent Rolls

Ham and cheese crescent rollI spend a lot of time trying to come up with interesting lunch items for my son. I’ve long been dissatisfied with school lunches, and so has he. This year, I’ve been making his lunches for the week on Sundays so I don’t have to worry about it for the rest of the week. I like this recipe because it takes care of a side dish for Sunday dinner, and it provides lunches for a week (the recipe makes eight crescent rolls and eight ham and cheese rolls.

If you don’t want to make your own crescent roll dough, you can always use refrigerated crescent rolls, although they aren’t nearly as flavorful and they’re pretty small.

A quick tip on baking – I prefer regular yeast to rapid rise yeast. The reason is I believe that a dough that rises more slowly has time to develop better flavors. You can use a quick rise yeast, which will cut the rising time by about half. You can also replace the shortening with softened butter, although shortening gives the rolls a more tender crumb. If you like, you can sprinkle the ham and cheese rolls with a bit of cheese before baking.

Ham and Cheese Crescent Rolls

  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup warm water at 110 degrees Fahrenheit
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 4 cups flour plus more for kneading and rolling
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, very soft
  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water in small bowl.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, combine sugar, salt, eggs, and shortening. Use a mixer to beat on high speed until all ingredients are combined.
  3. Add yeast mixture and flour. Stir until a smooth dough forms.
  4. Turn dough out on a well-floured surface and knead until dough is springy and elastic, about 10 minutes.
  5. Place in an oiled bowl, turning to coat dough in oil.
  6. Cover and allow dough to rise in a warm spot until doubled, about 90 minutes.
  7. Punch down dough. Divide into two equal balls.
  8. Roll out each ball on a floured surface into a round that is about 1/4 inch thick.
  9. Spread each round with half of the softened butter.
  10. On one round of dough, lay out slices of deli ham to cover the entire round. Sprinkle with grated cheese.
  11. Cut the rounds into eight wedges (pizza style). Roll each wedge into a crescent roll from the wide end to the point.
  12. Place rolls on parchment lined baking pans. Cover and allow to rise for an hour, until rolls are doubled in size.
  13. Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  14. Bake rolls for 12 to 15 minutes, until cooked through and golden brown on the outside.

Lamb Gyros


My entire family loves gyros. Made with a spiced lamb, gyros are warm and delicious food.

I’ve been making my own gyros for years. While they are traditionally served on pita with tzatziki sauce, I’m allergic to milk and can’t have gluten. Plus, lately we’ve been eating a paleo diet.  I make a garlic lemon mayonnaise and serve them on a bed of arugula with a quick pickled red onion, chopped cucumber, and heirloom tomato salad. You can also serve the meat as a lettuce wrap with the quick pickles and mayo.


  • 1 medium onion, chopped in food processor
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon dried marjoram
  • 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 2 pounds ground lamb
  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Place onion in food processor and run processor for about 10 seconds to finely chop it.
  3. Place chopped onion on a tea towel, scraping the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula to ensure you get all the moisture.
  4. Wrap towel tightly around the onion and squeeze out as much moisture as possible over the sink.
  5. Return onion to food processor with garlic, marjoram, rosemary, salt, and pepper.
  6. Pulse food processor for 10 one second pulses to chop and mix herbs.
  7. Add lamb to herbs in food processor. Process until the lamb and herbs are very well combined, forming a paste-like mixture.
  8. Press lamb mixture into a loaf pan.
  9. Place pan in a 9×13 baking dish and place in oven. Carefully pour boiling water into 9×13 inch pan until it comes about halfway up on the loaf pan (make a water bath).
  10. Cook until lamb reaches 165 degrees.
  11. Remove from oven and set loaf pan on a baking rack to rest, about 15 minutes.
  12. Unmold gyro meat and slice.

Quick pickled red onion recipe can be found here. Combine quick pickled onions with chopped cucumber and heirloom tomatoes and serve atop gyro. Serve on toasted pita if desired, or for low-carb paleo, atop a bed of baby arugula. Top with 1 cup of mayonnaise mixed with 2 cloves of garlic through a press and the juice of one lemon.

Rice with Black Beans, Linguica, and Sweet Peppers (with Paleo adaptation)

black beans and riceThis is a quick meal to pull together if you’ve got cooked rice and canned black beans. In about 20 minutes, you’ll have a smoky, delicious dish with Portuguese influences. I love the Portuguese sausage, linguica, in this recipe, although you can substitute other types of sausage, as well.

  • 1 lb thin sliced uncured bacon
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 2 sweet peppers (red, yellow or orange), seeded and chopped
  • 4 large cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes (I use heirloom), chopped
  • 3 chipoltle chiles in adobo, chopped
  • 1 can black beans, drained
  • 1 pound cooked linguica, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried cumin
  • 1 tablespoon chopped dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 4 cups cooked white rice
  • Sea salt to taste
  1. In a large dutch oven over medium heat, cook bacon until fat renders. Remove bacon from fat with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  2. Add onions and peppers to fat in pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften, about five minutes.
  3. Add garlic and cook until it releases its fragrance, about 30 seconds.
  4. Add chipoltle chiles and tomatoes. Stir to scrape any browned bits off bottom of pan.
  5. Add beans, linguica, paprika, cumin, thyme, and black pepper.
  6. Simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently, 5-10 minutes to allow flavors to blend.
  7. Stir in rice and reserved bacon and cook to heat through.
  8. Season to taste.

For a paleo version, eliminate the black beans and rice. Replace the rice with riced cauliflower or spiralized zucchini.

Sweet Potato Zucchini Hash with Fried Eggs

tomatoesThis is my favorite time at the farmers’ market, because there are so many great organic fruits, vegetables, and herbs to choose from. I’m a huge fan of buying local produce at farm stands and farmers’ markets, because local food picked and sold at the peak of freshness has incredible flavors. Buying local also supports local farmers. This week at the market I purchased:

  • Sweet potatoes
  • Heirloom tomatoes
  • Zucchini (actually, a friend gave me some)
  • Fresh eggs
  • Chives
  • Onions
  • Thyme

These ingredients all came together this morning in a spectacularly fresh farmers’ market breakfast.

Sweet Potato Zucchini Hash with Fried Eggs

  • 2 tablespoons rendered duck fat
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 sweet potato, unpeeled, cut into a 1/4 inch dice
  • 1 zucchini, unpeeled, cut into a 1/4 inch dice
  • Salt and fresh black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 eggs, fried over easy
  • 1 heirloom tomato, diced
  • Chopped chives
  1. Heat oil in a 12″ non-stick sauté pan over medium heat.
  2. Add onions and cook until transparent, about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add sweet potatoes and zucchini. Spread in a single layer along the bottom of the pan.
  4. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  5. Reduce heat to medium low. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables caramelize, about 30 minutes.
  6. Move hash to one side of the pan to keep warm. Increase heat to medium.
  7. Crack eggs into other side of the pan and cook to over easy.
  8. Mix together tomatoes and chives.
  9. Place hash on two plates. Top each portion with an egg, and then with tomato chive mixture.

Lettuce Wraps

lettuce wrap

The other day at the grocery store, I came across chicken thighs for $1.29 per pound. The catch was that you had to purchase a huge tray of them – more than enough to feed my family twice over. Still, it made sense to buy them since a smaller tray not on special cost exactly the same as the large tray.

Today, Jim smoked the thighs on the smoker for two hours at 275 degrees. In the last 30 minutes, he glazed them with a reduction of a cup of pure maple syrup, the zest and juice of an orange, a couple of tablespoons of gluten-free soy sauce, and a teaspoon of sriracha. As I knew it would, we had about half of the thighs left when we were done with dinner.

No worries – I have a plan. Tomorrow I will shred the thighs, toss them in the remaining sauce, and make lettuce wraps. Here’s my recipe.

Lettuce Wraps

  • Large leaves from one head of lettuce
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 cup mushrooms, chopped chopped
  • 1/2 onion, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Meat and skin from six smoked chicken thighs, cut into chunks.
  • Sauce made from a reduction of 1 cup of maple syrup, zest and juice of one orange, 2 T gluten-free soy sauce (or coconut amines), and 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of sriracha (or red pepper flakes) (simmer until syrupy)
  • Shirataki angel hair noodles, rinsed and warmed in hot water, then drained (or some other gluten free noodle) (optional)
  • 2 scallions, julienned
  • 2 carrots, julienned
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • Peanut sauce (recipe follows)
  1. Heat oil in a large sauté pan until shimmering.
  2. Add mushrooms and cook to brown, about six minutes.
  3. Add onions and continue to cook until transparent.
  4. Add garlic and cook until it releases its scent, about 30 seconds.
  5. Add chicken and half of the maple syrup sauce and simmer until chicken is heated through.
  6. Remove from heat and set aside.
  7. Rinse shirataki noodles (or cook some other gluten free noodle) under water in a wire colander.
  8. Place colander with noodles in a bowl of hot water and let sit to warm noodles until you are ready to serve. Drain well before serving.
  9. To serve, put chicken and mushrooms on a plate, along with portions of noodles, scallions, carrots, and bean sprouts. Put 2-3 lettuce leaves on each plate. Serve remaining maple syrup reduction and peanut sauce on the side.
  10. To assemble, put portions of chicken, noodles, vegetables, and sauce in the center of lettuce leaves and roll to eat.

Quick Peanut Sauce

In a blender or food processor mix until well combined:

  • 1-1/2 cups of peanut butter (or almond butter for paleo)
  • 3 tablespoons gluten-free soy sauce (or coconut amines for paleo)
  • Juice from one lime
  • 1 tsp to 1 tablespoon sriracha (to taste or omit all together)
  • 1 tablespoon grated gingerroot
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons honey