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Everyday Paleo Around the World: Italian Cuisine: Authentic Recipes Made Gluten-Free Paperback – July 23, 2013
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Top Customer Reviews
And that is where this book comes in. From what I garner- Sarah is a former chubby girl who totally got down and dirty with the SAD diet (bc let's be honest- it's delicious). She changed her ways, however, for the same reason I changed mine- it just makes me feel better to eat paleo. I sleep better, I workout better (though they are NOT crossfit workouts by any stretch of the imagination), and I am less moody. These recipes are amazing AND delicious. The cost of the book is worth the Bechamel recipe alone. And while Everyday Paleo and the Everyday Paleo cookbooks for families were great books- I actually think that she is getting to be an even better cook. So give this book a try. You won't be disappointed.
I have only tried one of the recipes so far, and the basil olive oil was delicious. I can't wait to give the pizzas a shot, and the lasagna is on my list.
The photography is beautiful as always with Sarah's books.
So when I saw that my library had a copy of this cookbook of Italian paleo recipes, I grabbed it immediately. We like the cookbook overall... but it probably won't earn a spot in my "Now I must buy this to own it forever" library.
As with many cookbooks, there's a long introductory section that might be worth reading once (in this case, about her food travels in Italy rather than Why Paleo) and ignored thereafter. The bulk of the book is given to chapters for antipasti; pizze (pizzas); first courses (including side dishes soups); main dishes; dessert. Every recipe is accompanied with a photo, which I know matters to some people. I also appreciate that each recipe has prep time (15 minutes) and cook time (10 minutes) to help with dinner planning.
Because paleo encompasses several foods you may-or-may-not eat, it's worth noting that her accepted fats include lard, butter, or ghee interchangeably; sauce ingredients suggest "coconut milk or cream;' cheese usually is treated as an option; and she sweetens primarily with honey. (I'm not saying which ingredients you ought to use, simply trying to give you enough info to decide if this a good match for your choices.)
Plenty of dishes (including traditional ones) are paleo by nature, so you wouldn't have to own a "paleo" cookbook to get recipes for them: Osso Bucco, classic Bolognese, a chicken stew, chicken Marsala (which doesn't need to be dredged in flour at all).
The big question, of course, is how these recipes satisfies our yearnings for the dishes that rely on grain and other non-paleo foods. Sometimes they're just dropped, with another ingredient or two added in; the minestrone obviously uses no pasta, but does include bacon and sweet potato. In other cases we need something to either stand in for an expected role (what are you going to serve that sauce on?) or to replace it entirely.
The pizza dough apparently comes (with permission and gratitude) from Paleo Indulgences by Tammy Credicott, a cookbook I haven't tried yet. It might be the best paleo pizza crust I've had, though. In addition to using almond flour and coconut flour, and an egg, it also includes a yeast mixture (with honey and dry yeast) that puts the "pizza flavor" back into the dish. For noodles, you have a few options: spaghetti squash, sweet potato or zucchini noodles (made with a spiral slicer -- a fun-to-use and inexpensive gizmo), or grain-free pasta (she recommends Cappello's; I'm currently experimenting with a brand that I found at a local store). I'm "meh" on spaghetti squash, but I like the spiral-sliced vegetables; however, I remind myself that they're _instead of_ pasta, not _just like_ pasta. With some of these items, you have to appreciate them for themselves, tasty as-is, because "replacement" thinking will only disappoint you.
We've made three dishes so far, and have been quite pleased. The first of them was the pizza, which my husband said would have earned the cookbook a 5-star review on its own (even if the recipe came from someone else). We really liked the white clam sauce (served on zucchini noodles), but then how could you not like anything made from garlic, white wine, cream, and two cans of clams? Last night's dinner was a mushroom "risotto;" instead of rice, it uses cauliflower pulsed in the food processor to the consistency of rice. It was a yummy vegetarian supper, as long as I didn't pretend that it was supposed to taste just like rice.
I have my eye on a few other recipes to try: a chopped chicken salad (the sort that I could find in any non-paleo cookbook, but I like inclusion of grapes and green beans on this one); fish filets in celery cream; ladyfingers (with almond flour, coconut flour, and arrowroot flour) to include in tiramisu. And especially the gnocchi (made with a sweet potato, almond flour, and arrowroot flour) -- but that's going to have to wait for a day when I have time to putter in the kitchen.
With everything I like about this cookbook, why am I so willing for it to return to the library whence it came? Largely because the author is a bit too light-handed with the seasonings. I have a copious cookbook library, which includes several Italian and Mediterranean cookbooks. Most of those recipes have more layers of flavor, even the ones that aren't trying to be a "dinner in 45 minutes" cookbook. I like this cookbook for the "what to use in place of..." ideas, but I feel like I've more wonderful Italian recipes in my existing library, even if I have to ignore or fuss with half of them. This is good for a paleo mostly-quick-dinners cookbook with an Italian theme; but it doesn't answer my great-Italian-cookbook desire.
Oh dear, that sounds more critical than I meant. If you're longing for Italian food and trying to stay paleo, this IS a good choice.
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