October Already!

Seriously, how has the year gone by so quickly? I know they say time speeds up as you get older, but at this rate I’ll be 93 in less than 24 hours!

October is one of my favourite months, but then I am a Scorpio, so what else would you expect? Halloween/Samhain is the best festival of all time in my opinion, hands down beats Christmas and New Year. I really need to be kept away from the decorations sections in the supermarkets because I tend to go a little mad.

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Of course the other great thing about this time of year is the marvellous varieties of squash available. We love pumpkin, and I shall be stocking up and cooking and freezing as many of the big carvers as I can. There does seem to be an increasing selection  of other squashes in the supermarkets here now too, especially if you look in some of the higher end shops like Booths or Waitrose.

Last year I ordered a big box of spaghetti squash direct from a fenland farmer, something I must sort out doing again very soon – the squashes have such a lovely long shelf life that stocking up makes a lot of sense.

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What is your favourite squash recipe? I shall be having a go at a paleoified pumpkin pie again this year, but I want to try something a bit more adventurous too. Having said that, it will probably end up being a pumpkin inspired ice cream, as I plough on with getting my paleo ice cream ebook ready for sale towards the end of the month!

Just to give you fair warning, I’ve set myself a challenge this month – a blog post a day. Gulp. Let’s see if I do better with that than I did with Whole30!

TTFN

 

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A Gingerbread Family

This week has been another hectic one in the Creatively Paleo family. I’m not entirely sure where the time is going to, but it seems almost incomprehensible that we are already in September!

Of course we don’t have the back to school rush that most families have, and for that I am eternally grateful! The idea of shopping for school shoes gives me the shudders! You may have seen the post about Primal Education a couple of weeks ago, well that is part of a lovely Not Back To School Carnival over at LiveOtherwise. Grab a brew and take some time meandering through all the posts, there are some really lovely stories included, and they might give you some interesting food for thought 🙂

I’ve been working hard on a couple of projects, the first of which I have just launched and am really quite pleased with. It was a proper family collaboration with the children all contributing ideas as well as helping with various technical aspects that my brain had a temporary block with! It’s a free guide to primalizing your family – it takes a gentle and respectful approach, because, in my opinion at least, there is no space for anything else when it comes to such a huge and important change in a child’s diet.

For the guide we’ve been testing out a paleoified gingerbread recipe, and after much tweaking we are really pleased with the result, and have included it as a cute little printable in the guide. We really hope you like it and have fun baking with your children!

Here’s a little graphic that I whipped up in the A Beautiful Mess app (I do so love that app!). If you click on it it will take you to the download cart thingy majiggy!

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We’ve been back to meal planning again this last couple of weeks, which definitely makes life much easier. There should  be some new recipes coming up on the site this week too, including a one pot chilli which was a real life saver in the campervan, and a tasty pork recipe with a Polynesian influence!

That’s it for now – don’t forget it’s #PaleoHour between 8 and 9 pm GMT tonight on twitter!

TTFN

 

Kitchen Cock Ups

Creating paleo cakes is quite an art form. Whilst cooking with gluten free flours isn’t always a doddle, it is infinitely easier than the paleo friendly flours, particularly when you are limited even further by allergies to nuts and bananas, which most sweet paleo dishes seem to use. 

When I come up with a new recipe, which involves baking, sometimes I get it right straight away – I consider these times flukes! Mostly there are days of cock ups and washing up mountains that would surely rival Everest*.

*This may or may not be an exaggeration. 

sometimes though it’s possible to use a little creativity and turn the cockups into a glorious success! Today was one of those days, but more of that later.

 Take my luscious lemon bundt cakes as an example. Here’s how they ended up looking 

 

Pretty good huh? I know it makes me one to bite into one and slowly lick that lemony centre out!You can make your own, the recipe is here. But they didn’t start out like that, oh no, see for yourself… 

 

 

I had two totally failed batches and a further 4 tweaked attempts before coming up with the perfect result. Thankfully my children don’t mind the failures, most of the time at least, so there isn’t too much waste, but the financial implications can be quite high given the price of many paleo friendly ingredients. 

Yesterday I decided that I wanted to create a coconut cake. I wanted to see if it would be possible to create one that was created completely from coconut. A tall order as coconut flour is, quite frankly, a complete bitch of a flour to work with! Fair play to me for giving it a go, I was even vaguely hopeful that it might work at one point.

Of course it would have stood more than a fighting chance if it had been cooking in an oven and not…. under the grill! Duh! I’m still getting used to the new to me oven. My question to Neff is this: who in their right minds thought an oven come grill was a good idea?! Someone who doesn’t cook I would wager!

My teens thought it was hilarious, and I’m not entirely sure when the leg pulling will stop. Perhaps as their birthday approaches? We shall see.

Fairly obviously it didn’t work and I was left with a soggy mass of crumbs. I was not a happy bunny I can tell you, and then the internet died. Could the day get any worse? I decided to go to bed just  to be on the safe side.

 

This morning I awoke with a genius idea – don’t you love how a good night’s sleep can do that? Truffles! Way back in the depths of time when school cookery lessons were called home economics, and dinosaurs still roamed the earth, I had been taught to make rum truffles from…. cake crumbs! Yay! Thank you crappy all girls boarding school, you finally taught me something useful! 

I set to work: remembering to turn on the oven not the grill, (although in this instance the grill may have worked more quickly) I dried the very soggy crumbs out a bit before weaving magic with raw chocolate and more coconut and… well see for yourself what I think of kitchen failures…

 

Do you want to see what they look like inside? Go on then, here is the, gratuitous (coco)nutty chocolate ball shot… (you knew that all girls school was a convent right? Yeah, that’s my level of humour still, sorry!)

 

 

 Not bad huh? I’m still working on the coconut cake, when I get it right I’ll share the recipe for it and the truffles, when the broadband is up and running again. The iPad is great, but I can’t build web pages on it. Boo hiss! 

PS I’m doing whole 30 at the moment, did I mention that? No cakes were consumed in the making of this blog post, except by my children! Lucky so and sos. You can keep up with my whole 30 progress on the page in the header area.

TTFN 

if you’re interested in keeping up with us you might like to like creatively paleo on facebook or follow us on twitter or instagram or if pinterest is your thing we’re there too! Social media whores, much?!

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Primal Creative Urges

One of the reasons I chose Creatively Paleo for my website name is because I strongly believe that the creative act is a primal urge that we all feel throughout out lives; I wanted the website name to express the fact that creativity, as a primal desire, is as crucial to our health and wellbeing as the food we eat.

Ever since I can remember I have had moments where I been overcome with the desire to create. Often I wouldn’t have the first clue what I wanted to create, but I just HAD to make something. From around about the age of ten I called these my “creative urges” and I would not be able to rest until I had satisfied the intense yearning that would almost consume me when these urges struck.

I can see a similar need in my son which demonstrates, on a very immediate level, that the desire to create is not an inherently female experience. Obviously when looking at the wider world this is clearly demonstrated, not least by the countless numbers of men who have created great works of art, music, culinary delights etc; but I do think that the primal urge has perhaps most often been associated with the creation of new life in the womb.

I suspect this feminisation of creativity has been a leading factor in the demeaning of arts based studies – academia and cerebral studies are so much more highly prized once you leave the colourful, paint splattered days of kindergarten behind, whilst more obviously creative pursuits are sidelined, at best, but most often mocked and maligned.

It is my belief that this lack of understanding about our primal need to create, has helped to lead many of us into the depths of despair; but… the strength of this innate desire cannot be crushed completely as is testified to by the number of formerly “sensible” adults who suddenly develop a yearning to become yoga teachers, gardeners, artists, knitters, photographers etc etc etc, most often when they hit their late 30s and early 40s, when of course it is laughed off once more, this time as a midlife crisis.

We each have a creative spark within us, no matter how deeply buried we might think it is. How could it be otherwise? After all, don’t we originate from ancestors who were compelled, by something within, to mix up dirt and berry juices and apply them to the walls of their caves as decorative, seemingly purposeless, art? How would humanity have advanced to the extent we have without this need to take raw materials and transform them into something beautiful, useful, tasty or just plain whimsical?

photo credit: wikipedia

Creativity does not just have to be about the arts however, it is entirely possible to fulfil a creative desire in anything you do – a computer coder would probably not seem to be remotely creative to most people, but that strange language, in the right hands, can create a beautiful programme or website that those of us who don’t speak that language would find impossible to bring into being.

Creativity is the spark of passion that drives you; the medium you choose to bring it into existence through is almost besides the point.

I think by now you might be able to tell that I’m a little bit passionate about creativity…! I truly believe that “paleo” is so much more than a way of eating, it is an entire way of life; one that will fuel not just your body but your mind and soul too.

I’d love to hear how you’ve honoured your creativity this week. Here’s how it looked for me.

Recipes for the purple funky chicken and the apple cake will be added to the website this week. Be the first to know by liking our facebook page or by following us on twitter.

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