paleo chili stuffed sweet potatoes

paleo chili stuffed sweet potatoes

I love chili but haven't gotten around to making a purely paleo and whole30 version. Well the time is now! For those who are strict and omit legumes on a regular basis - this one is for you! 

Sunday night was the night to perfect this chili.  I had previously made different versions but wanted to try a little spin on it. I've had a pretty serious obsession with chipotle peppers lately and decided that along with some cocoa powder and cinnamon, this would elevate the chili. Glass of wine in hand, music playing, I got to work. It was a relaxing Sunday night, dinner would be finished early and I felt an overall sense of calm. Ahhhh such rare moments. 

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simple fermented vegetables

simple fermented vegetables

When I lived in Romania, my family shopped at the local farmers market and ate seasonally. There was really no choice as it was that or starve. We didn't have well stocked grocery stores so we had to be prepared. In anticipation of cold, long winters, my grandparents would ferment large quantities of vegetables that were not available in the winter. Little did I know just how beneficial fermented vegetables were. 

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taco seasoning mix

taco seasoning mix

I walk through the door. It's a peaceful Tuesday evening. I had a remarkably easy day at the office. No stress, no emails or timelines - a smooth day all around. The smell of food makes my mouth water. The gentle sound of Bach becomes more audible with every step I take. I notice my children are quietly reading books. They're too enveloped in them to notice I'd stepped in. The house is in order, no toys in sight and my husband declares that dinner is nearly finished.

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pea and walnut pesto

pea and walnut pesto

I cook with peas often. My children like them and while not technically paleo, I do eat them as well. Legumes tend to be bothersome for certain people, they don't bother me much as long as they're not an every day food. For a quick side, I will toss them in a pan with olive oil, fresh dill, garlic, salt and pepper.

Perched on a chair in the tiny kitchen of her 7th floor Bucharest apartment, my grandmother Lina showed me how to carefully remove peas out of their pods. It was a tiny kitchen, barely big enough to fit a table and still have walking room between it and the counter. But there we were, my apron wearing grandmother and me having an average day peeling peas and making stew. 

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guacamole

guacamole

The first time I had an avocado was memorable and it would be roughly 7 years before I would eat another one. 

I turned 9 shortly after we arrived in Germany. All the immigrants were moved around from town to town 3 times in a matter of months before temporarily settling into a small village named Burgsalach. 

The idea of moving from Romania to Germany was exciting but also very scary and it took some time to acclimate. Once we'd arrived to Burgsalach, where I would spend the next 4 years of my life, we were housed in a large hostel like place. There was one kitchen and one bathroom that roughly 7 families had to share. Not an ideal situation but it was fine.

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