Paleo (and Whole30) Chicken Pad Thai with Thai “Peanut” Sauce

img_2661by Karen Frazier

Oh man do I love pad Thai, and it’s something I’ve missed eating in the few years since I went completely paleo. I decided – after 2 1/2 years – to make my own. It’s a bit labor intensive, but if you love pad Thai like I do, it’s well worth the effort. I made my tamarind paste from pods, but if you can find some with paleo/Whole30-approved ingredients, feel free to use that, instead.

Tamarind Paste

  • 10 tamarind pods
  • Boiling water
  1. Peel away all the tough outer shell of the pods, and use a sharp paring knife to remove any of the woody spines and discard them.
  2. Place the tamarind in a heat proof glass measuring cup and just cover them with boiling water. Allow the pods to soak in the hot water for 45 minutes.
  3. Reserve 3 tablespoons of the soaking water and set aside. Discard the rest of the water.
  4. Put the tamarind in a bowl and mash with a potato masher. Remove any solids (seeds or more spines) and discard them.
  5. Place a wire mesh sieve over a bowl. Spoon the tamarind into the sieve. Using the back of a wooden spoon, press the tamarind through the sieve. Do this for about five minutes, using a rubber scraper to scrape the paste from the bottom side of the sieve into the bowl every minute or two. You should wind up with about 1/4 cup of the paste. The goal is to get as much of the paste as possible away from the seeds and pulp.
  6. Stir in the reserved liquid.

Thai “Peanut” Sauce

  • 1 1/2 cups organic sugar-free almond butter
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • Juice of three limes
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger root
  • 1 thai chili, finely minced (optional)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons coconut aminos
  • 1 tablespoon Red Boat fish sauce

In a food processor, combine all ingredients. Blend until smooth.

Pad Thai

  • 3 tablespoons Red boat fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons coconut aminos
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper, divided
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced, divided
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into thin strips
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil, divided
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced and broken up into rings
  • 1 large carrot, julienned (or grated)
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
  • 6 green onions, thinly sliced, divided
  • 1/4 cup tamarind paste
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 to 2 thai chilies, finely minced (or to taste)
  • 4 to 6 zucchini, spiralized into spaghetti style noodles (enough for about five cups)
  • 1/4 cup bean sprouts
  • 1 lime, quartered
  • 1/4 cup chopped cashews
  • 1/4 cup chopped, fresh cilantro
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the fish sauce, coconut aminos, 1/8 teaspoon of the pepper, and 4 of the garlic cloves. Add the chicken. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour and up to 8 hours.
  2. In a large skillet or wok, heat two tablespoons of the coconut oil on medium high. Remove the chicken from the marinade and cook, stirring occasionally, until cooked through, five to seven minutes. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
  3. In the same pan, heat the remaining two tablespoons of coconut oil on medium-high. Add the shallots, carrots, red bell peppers, thai chilies, and half of the green onions. Cook, stirring, for one minute.
  4. Add the zucchini noodles and cook, stirring, for three to four minutes more, until the vegetables are crisp tender. Add the remaining 4 garlic cloves and cook, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds.
  5. Add the tamarind paste, water, and the remaining 1/8 teaspoon of pepper. Return the chicken to the pan. Cook, stirring, until the noodles are coated with sauce and water evaporates, about two minutes more.
  6. Serve garnished with bean sprouts, the remaining green onions, the cashews, the cilantro, and the lime wedges. Spoon peanut sauce over the top.
Advertisements

Coconut Blueberry Pancakes with Orange-Maple-Ginger Syrup

pancakesby Karen Frazier

Pancakes are a sometimes treat for us. I don’t do a lot of low-carb and paleo baking because I don’t want to get in the habit of eating baked goods. I prefer to stay pretty basic. However, from time to time, I get bit by the baking bug. While pancakes aren’t quite baking, they have a lot of similarities. In fact, with a few modifications this recipe also makes tasty muffins.

Coconut Blueberry Pancakes

  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil, plus more for cooking
  • A few drops liquid stevia
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • Organic blueberries
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the coconut flour, baking powder, and salt.
  2. In another medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, coconut oil, stevia, vanilla, and coconut milk.
  3. Carefully fold the wet ingredients into the dry, stirring until just combined.
  4. Heat a skillet on medium-high. Grease it with the coconut oil.
  5. Ladle the pancakes onto the skillet, dropping blueberries on each pancake.
  6. Cook until the pancakes bubble, about four minutes. Flip and cook a few more minutes on the other side. Serve with the syrup.

Orange-Maple-Ginger Syrup

  • 1 cup Truvia (not the baking blend, which has sugar – the stuff in the green jar), Swerve sweetener, or granulated erythritol
  • 1 cup hot water
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 3-4 slices ginger root
  • 1/2 teaspoon maple extract
  1. In a small saucepan, bring all ingredients to a simmer on medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Simmer for five minutes.
  2. Turn off heat and allow the syrup to steep for one hour.
  3. Strain out solids.

The syrup won’t be thick like you’re used to, but it will add wonderful flavor to your pancakes.
photo credit: Blueberry & Ricotta Pancakes via photopin (license)

Chocolate Nut Butter Fudge

fudgeby Karen Frazier

I bought a few cans of coconut milk the other day and found, as often happens, the coconut milk had separated into cream at the top of the can with the water condensing in the bottom. This separation of the solids and liquids, I realized, is the perfect way to add a creamy element to a lot of different foods.

My first thought was using these coconut milk solids (the coconut cream) to make icing, since they had a texture similar to chilled butter, albeit a bit creamier and less dense. However, I didn’t feel like messing with paleo flours to bake a cake or brownies, but I still wanted to mess around with the cream a bit.

Then it hit me. If I mixed the coconut cream with a nut butter and some melted chocolate, it would develop a fudge-like consistency. Or that was my hope. So I gave it a try, and it worked. The result was a creamy, low-carb, vegan, paleo, tasty fudge with the perfect texture and the exact right level of sweetness.

You’ll need to use canned coconut milk here – the full-fat kind, not lite coconut milk. Usually you can tell if the solids and liquids have separated by giving the can a shake and listening. There won’t be a liquid sloshing sound. If, for some reason, it hasn’t separated, then you can refrigerate the unopened can overnight, which should do the trick.

The cans of coconut milk where this is most likely to happen are those without any additives or emulsifiers – so check the ingredients and make sure it only lists coconut cream and water. This is the type that is most likely to separate.

When you open the can, pour away the water and use a rubber spatula to scrape all of the solid coconut cream out. Some stores also sell coconut cream, and you can use that, as well.

Choose a nut butter that works with your diet. If you’re paleo, sugar-free, organic almond butter works well here. If you’re not paleo, then use organic, sugar-free peanut butter instead. I don’t specify an amount of liquid stevia (for paleo), or liquid sucralose (for non-paleo, low-carb) because sweetness preferences vary. I tend to like my dessert not very sweet, so I don’t add a lot of sweetener. To get the right amount of sweetness, add a bit of the liquid sweetener (5-10 drops), taste, add more, taste – and continue until you reach the desired sweetness level.

Chocolate Nut Butter Fudge

  • 2 ounces unsweetened dark, vegan chocolate
  • 1/3 cup nut butter
  • 1 (14-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk, drained or 3/4 cup unsweetened coconut cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Liquid stevia or liquid sucralose to taste
  1. Line an eight-inch square pan with parchment.
  2. In your microwave or on the stove, melt the nut butter and chocolate. If melting on the stovetop, do it on low heat and stir frequently. In the microwave, cook on high for 30 seconds, stir, and repeat until smooth.
  3. In a medium-sized bowl or stand mixer, beat the melted chocolate and nut butter, coconut cream, vanilla, and sweetener until smooth. Taste and add more sweetener as desired.
  4. Pour into the prepared pan using a rubber spatula to spread it in an even layer. Freeze for one hour. Cut into squares, and store the fudge in a zipper bag in the fridge or freezer.

photo credit: Coffee Fudge via photopin (license)

Grilled Beef Short Ribs with Apple and Jicama Slaw

short ribsby Karen Frazier

Okay – here’s the deal. I had leftover marinade from my earlier pork belly recipe, but alas, I had no unfrozen pork belly. Not to worry, however. I have about 10 pounds of it in my freezer (yay!)

So anyhoo…I wanted to use the rest of the marinade. Which is why I headed to the grocery store and picked up some flanken-style beef short ribs (the kind of beef short ribs where they are cut thin across several bones).

I marinated them in my extra marinade for a little over two hours, and then I popped them on my Foreman grill, which I consider a very underrated kitchen gadget. You can also grill them on the regular grill or use a grill pan.

Although the marinade was the same, the flavor was very different from the pork belly. The beef was super flavorful. As I was eating, I realized the ribs would be delish with a ginger broccoli stir-fry, but it’s also good with a crispy, slightly sweet, slightly acidic slaw (or why choose? you can do both!) I’ll include recipes for both, and you can decide.

Asian Marinated Flanken-Style Beef Short Ribs

  • 1/4 cup gluten-free soy sauce
  • 2-3 drops of liquid stevia
  • 2 tablespoons sriracha
  • 8 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger root
  • 2 to 3 pounds flanken-style beef short ribs
  • Sesame seeds
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, stevia, sriracha, garlic, sesame oil, and ginger root.
  2. Add the short ribs to a large zipper bag and pour in the marinade. Seal the bag and squish it around (I believe squish is a technical term) until all the meat is covered. Refrigerate for two to four hours. The longer the marinade, the more flavor you’ll get. You can even marinade in the morning and cook when you get home.
  3. Preheat a grill on high.
  4. Grill the short ribs, three to four minutes per side.
  5. Sprinkle with sesame seeds before serving.

Broccoli Ginger Stir-Fry

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger root
  • 4 cups broccoli florets
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  1. In a large saute pan, heat the coconut oil on medium-high until it shimmers.
  2. Add the ginger and broccoli and cook, stirring frequently, until the broccoli is crisp-tender, about five minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until it is fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  4. Add the soy sauce. Cook for one minute, stirring frequently.

Apple and Jicama Slaw

  • 2 sweet-tart apples (I like Honeycrisp or Pink Lady), cored and julienned
  • 1 Jicama, peeled and julienned
  • Juice of two limes
  • Zest of half a lime
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger root
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  1. In a large bowl, combine the apples and jicama.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, lime zest, ginger root, rice vinegar, cilantro, olive oil, and sea salt.
  3. Toss the dressing with the apples and jicama.

So those are the recipes. Trust me, they’re delicious! But, I just thought of something else that would be really delicious with the short ribs…a bok choy stir-fry, cooked in a manner similar to the broccoli above. You might even toss in a handful of sliced shiitake mushrooms for a tasty low-carb side dish.

Low-Carb Paleo Stuffing/Dressing

stuffingby Karen Frazier

Yes – I know it’s after Thanksgiving, but some people turn around and make stuffing again at Christmas. Plus, I didn’t want to offer you a stuffing/dressing recipe until I’d tried it out on my own. That way, if it was terrible, we all would have all had disastrous stuffing on Thanksgiving. It wasn’t – it was tasty.

  • 8 ounces pancetta, cubed
  • 16 ounces bulk sage sausage
  • 2 tablespoons paleo-friendly fat (coconut oil, duck fat, etc.)
  • 3 onions, chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 6 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 apples, chopped (optional)
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 cups almond meal
  • 6 rosemary sprigs, stems removed and chopped
  • 6 sage sprigs, stems removed and chopped
  • 6-8 thyme sprigs, stems removed
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly chopped black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt (or to taste)
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a large pot on medium-high heat, cook the pancetta and sausage,stirring occasionally, until browned, about five minutes. Remove the pork from the pot with a slotted spoon and set aside in a large bowl.
  3. In the pot with the fat from the pork, add the paleo-friendly fat and cook until it melts.
  4. Add the onions and carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about five minutes. Remove from the vegetables from the fat with a slotted spoon and add to the bowl with the pork.
  5. In the same pot, add the celery and apples. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about five minutes more.
  6. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  7. Add the entire contents of the pot (including the fat) to the bowl with the other vegetables and the pork.
  8. Add the almond meal, rosemary, sage, thyme, salt, pepper, and eggs. Mix well.
  9. Spread the mixture in a large casserole. Bake in the preheated oven for one hour.

Tips:

  1. Try replacing the apples with about a pound of chopped mushrooms.
  2. To quickly chop the herbs, put them all in a food processor and pulse for about 10 one-second pulses, or until well chopped.

photo credit: Stuffing at the ready via photopin (license)

Orange Avocado Coleslaw

slawby Karen Frazier

I always thought I hated coleslaw with a passion. I was only ever really exposed to it at potlucks and picnics, but one taste told me it wasn’t for me. I first got an inkling that I might enjoy coleslaw when I accidentally ate some on a weekend away at Cave B in the Columbia Gorge. I was eating lunch in the restaurant there, Tendrils, and I took a tentative bite of the slaw. It was delicious. As the chef wandered by, I asked him what was in it, and he admitted it had apples and ginger.

That’s when I started trying to make a better coleslaw – because I knew it existed. I tried it with apples and ginger. Pretty good. I tried it with jicama. Not bad. I keep tinkering with my recipe trying to give it more punch. For the most part, I’ve been a little underwhelmed. Until tonight.

Tonight I made pork belly with coleslaw, and it was delicious. In fact, I might go as far as to say the coleslaw actually stole the show for me…which is really saying something given how much I love pork belly. When I was done eating, I wasn’t hungry anymore. But if I’d wanted another bite of food, it would have been the coleslaw I nibbled.

I started with a simple organic coleslaw mix from Whole Foods, an orange, and an avocado. I like making my coleslaw dressing avocado-based instead of mayo-based because I like the vitamins, fat, fiber, and flavor I get from the avocado. It worked out swimmingly. Sadly, I didn’t measure. But I am going to try and estimate for you exactly what I did, because seriously folks. Yum!

Orange Avocado Coleslaw

  • 3 or 4 garlic cloves (I dumped a bunch in and chopped them and then realized oh God! Raw garlic! So I scooped a bunch back out)
  • 1 avocado, peeled and pitted
  • Juice of one orange
  • Zest of half an orange
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha (I like the recipe from NomNom Paleo) – or 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes for Whole30
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
  • 1 package organic coleslaw mix
  1. In the bowl of a food processor, chop the garlic cloves, 10 one-second pulses. Scrape the cloves from the sides of the food processor back into the bowl.
  2. Add the avocado, orange juice, orange zest, sriracha, apple cider vinegar, cilantro, and salt. Process until smooth, about 30 seconds.
  3. In a large bowl, toss the coleslaw mix with the dressing.

That’s it. Simple. Basic. I’ve been making it harder than it had to be.
photo credit: Chez Olga Haitian Restaurant Eastown Lourdie Lunch January 20, 2012 7 via photopin (license)

Mustard and Herb Leg of Lamb

20150201_144406by Karen Frazier

What I really want is Super Bowl food, but it’s not going to happen. I love stuff like nachos and chicken wings, but they just don’t like me. Too much stuff I’m allergic to. So instead, I’m making a lovely roast that should be ready at halftime. While the roast sits for the last 20 minutes, I’ll roast some carrots on high heat and toss them with a bit of balsamic and mustard. It will be tasty and super easy.

Mustard and Herb Leg of Lamb

  • 1 5-pound leg of lamb, bone in
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper
  • 5 sprigs rosemary, stems removed and discarded
  • 1 small bunch chives
  • 2 bunches fresh basil, leaves only
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 8 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Season the leg of lamb with salt and pepper.
  3. In a food processor, combine the rosemary, chives, basil, salt, pepper, garlic, mustard, and olive oil. Blend until a paste forms.
  4. Rub the paste all over the outside of the lamb.
  5. Roast in a roasting pan in the pre-heated oven for 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to 300 degrees and continue roasting, 10 to 12 minutes per pound until the roast reaches 145 degrees.
  6. Remove the lamb from the oven and tent it with foil. Allow the lamb to rest for 20 to 30 minutes.

Balsamic and Mustard Roasted Baby Carrots

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 pound baby carrots
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, rosemary, mustard, vinegar, salt, and pepper.
  3. Toss the carrots with the mixture and put in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet.
  4. Roast for 30 minutes, until the carrots are cooked.

Paleo Slow Cooker Pork Chili Colorado

dried chiliesby Karen Frazier

With Tanner off to college and Kevin only here a few weekends a month, Jim has become my primary cooking “audience.” As you may have noticed in previous posts, I spend a lot of time discussing what Jim likes to eat as the impetus for the foods I cook. My Paleo pork chili Colorado is no exception. I want Jim to enjoy the foods he eats so he is more easily able to stick to the plan. His health (and mine) is very important to me.

Pre-heart attack and pre-Paleo diet Jim really liked to eat Chili Colorado at Mexican restaurants. One night about a month into the Paleo diet, he got a wistful look in his eyes and started talking about how much he missed Azteca’s chili Colorado burrito. Clearly a burrito was out of the question, but I figured I had chili Colorado within my reach.

For my first attempt, I had some grass fed bison stew meat in the freezer, so I thought I’d try that. I nailed the spice blend, so the flavors were great, but the bison was just too dry to lend itself well to the slow stewing that happens with chili. This week, I decided to try some pastured pork shoulder instead. What a difference. The fat in the pork added a richness of flavor, and the meat took on the spices nicely.

So now, when Jim gets that wistful look in his eye, I’m ready for him with a nice pot of pork chili Colorado.

Paleo Slow Cooker Pork Chili Colorado

  • 1 pastured pork shoulder roast (4-5 pounds), cut into one-inch cubes
  • 1 1/2  teaspoons sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 dried New Mexico (or guajillo) chilies
  • 2 dried chipotle chilies
  • 1 teaspoon dried cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 cups homemade beef, chicken, or pork stock
  1. Season the pork cubes with salt and pepper and put them in the slow cooker with the onions and garlic.
  2. Roughly chop the dried chili peppers and put them in the bowl of a food processor. Run the processor for 20 one-second pulses. Then, run it continuously until the peppers are chopped into a powder with a few small pieces in it.
  3. Add the peppers to the slow cooker, and then add the cumin, oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, and stock. Stir to combine.
  4. Turn the slow cooker on low and cook for eight to ten hours.

photo credit: MarxFoods.com via photopin cc

Slow Cooker Paleo Jambalaya

Jambalayaby Karen Frazier

I love spicy food. Jim is a little more reticent. He will eat it, but he prefers it not be too hot. Most jambalaya recipes have a lot of heat in them, making them spicier than Jim’s palate prefers. So I set out to make jambalaya (without rice for obvious reasons) that would fit Jim’s heat preferences.

This recipe turned out perfectly. It had a little heat from the andouille without setting fire to our mouths. If you like it spicier, add more cayenne.

Slow Cooker Paleo Jambalaya

  • 1 onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 organic red pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 organic yellow pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 organic green pepper, peeled and chopped
  • 1 organic jalapeño, seeded and minced
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound andouille sausage, cut into one inch pieces
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into one inch pieces
  • 1 (15 ounce) can crushed tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 cup homemade beef bone broth
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh organic thyme
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh organic oregano
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh organic basil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 pound wild caught shrimp, tails removed, peeled, and deveined
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  1. In a large slow cooker, combine the onion, peppers, jalapeño, garlic, andouille, chicken, tomatoes, broth, thyme, oregano, basil, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Cook, covered, in a slow cooker on low for seven hours.
  2. Stir in the shrimp and lemon juice. Cover and continue cooking, turning the slow cooker up to high, until shrimp is pink, about one hour.
  3. Stir in the parsley.
  4. Serve garnished with the scallions.

Crispy Skinned Pork Belly with Orange-Jicama Slaw

pork bellyby Karen Frazier

Pork belly is often difficult to come by, but if you can find it, snap it up. For those who don’t know, it’s essentially uncured slab bacon that comes with the skin on the top. With the unctuous fattiness of the meat and the crispy skin on top, it makes a delicious main course. Check with local ranchers to find pork belly, or dig around on the Internet and you’ll be able to find some to order.

In this recipe, the spices in the rub and the acidity of the orange, as well as the crunch of the slaw all serve as a delicious counterpoint to the sweet fattiness of the pork. When I made this, it was the first time I cooked pork belly, so I borrowed the crispy skin cooking method from The Clothes Make the Girl blog. Then, I added my own flavors and spices. Trust me, it’s really delicious and rich!

For the pork belly:

  • 2-pound pork belly
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons Swerve sweetener (or 1 packet stevia) (optional – omit for Whole30)
  • Juice from half an orange

For the slaw:

  • 1 jicama, julienned
  • 1 cup julienned cabbage
  • 3 green onions, very thinly sliced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and grated
  • 1 avocado, peeled and pitted
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or sriracha to taste)
  • Juice from half an orange
  • Zest from half an orange
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt (or to taste)

For the pork belly:

  1. Pat the pork belly dry with paper towels. Score the pork skin in a cross-hatch pattern, cutting down to the meat but not through the meat.
  2. In a small bowl, mix the paprika, smoked paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper, coriander, cumin, sea salt, and sweetener.
  3. Rub the spice mixture on both sides of the pork. Wrap the pork in plastic and refrigerate for about two hours.
  4. Thirty minutes before cooking, put the unwrapped pork belly on a foil-lined baking sheet with the skin-side facing up. Allow it to come to room temperature.
  5. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
  6. Just before putting the pork belly in the oven, rub the skin with the orange juice.
  7. Bake the pork belly at 450 for 30 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and bake for another hour, until the skin has browned and crisped.
  8. Rest the pork, tented with foil, for 20 minutes before serving. While the pork rests, prepare the slaw.

For the slaw:

  1. In a large bowl, combine the jicama, cabbage, onions, and carrots.
  2. In a blender, add the avocado, garlic, red pepper flakes, orange juice and zest, apple cider vinegar, cilantro, and pepper. Blend until smooth. Taste and season with salt, starting with about 1/2 teaspoon of salt and continuing to add it until it is properly seasoned.
  3. Pour the avocado mixture over the vegetables and toss to coat.
  4. Serve the slaw alongside the pork.

photo credit: linecook via photopin cc