Happy Halloween

by Suz on October 31, 2014 · 0 comments

in Events, Food

Do you celebrate Halloween? Like so many festivals, Halloween is heavily linked with trashy food. If you are interested in ways to have a great Halloween while still following a healthy Paleo lifestyle then read on, because I have some great ideas to help you have a fun holiday.

Paleo Diet Primal Halloween Recipes Trick or Treat Pumpkin AlternativesOne of the things to keep in mind with Halloween is that it’s all about spending time with family and friends and having a good time – rather than the treats you can and cannot eat. I know that Halloween is a big “treat” holiday, but there are plenty of other things you can focus on to have a good time.

As far as trick-or-treating goes, you can still have fun and do that; however you want to focus on the social fun traditional aspect of it, rather than the end result of candy. Take your family out and have fun. You can have a lot of fun creating unique costumes and so this is your chance to go out and show them off. At the end of the night you can spend time with your family and make your own tasty paleo treats. Some parents offer their kids a buy back scheme – to offer cash or another reward in exchange for the junk they collected.

I was really impressed to see how one father enabled his son to join in the fun – whilst avoiding the sugar filled junk normally given to trick or treaters – see the photo below. Would you try something like this?

Paleo Diet Halloween Trick or Treat Alternative
You can make some great Paleo friendly treats to enjoy. Try spiced nuts, jerky and kale chips instead of sweets and candy.

When you buy pumpkins to carve, make sure you save the inners to make a huge batch of pumpkin soup. You can use the carved pumpkins to serve dips for veggies, instead of plain bowls.

Well there you have it! Here are some ideas for you to make the most out of your Halloween. Just remember to not focus on what the world tends to focus on, which is the sweets, lollies and candy. Focus on having a fun time with friends and family and prepare some Paleo friendly snacks in advance.

Do you do anything for Halloween? How do you keep it Paleo?

The Paleo Recipe Book

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If you’re short of time and aren’t using a slow cooker – you need to get one! There’s nothing like coming home after a long day, to a freshly made, hot paleo dinner.

16 Paleo Slow Cooker Tips Tricks Crock-pot

If you’ve not used a crock-pot before, here are my top tips:

Preparation

They are completely safe to leave turned on all day, however, it’s always a good idea to make sure it’s sat alone on your counter with nothing sat too close to it.

If you can spare an extra few minutes, try searing your meat and veggies too. This makes a big difference with a far richer flavour of the final dish.

For maximum efficiency prepare your vegetables and meat the night before, so all you need to do in the morning is put them in and turn it on.

Along the same lines, I always avoid overly complicate recipes that call for lots of preparation. I figure the whole point of using this method of cooking is to save me time, not add to it.

Try to keep your cubes of meat and harder vegetables in uniform sizes to make sure they all cook at a similar rate.

Don’t overfill your slow cooker. Aim for no more than two-thirds full – and you only need to half cover the ingredients if you’re adding in extra liquid. This method of cooking loses virtually no liquid to evaporation, so once those veggies cook you’ll find you have more than enough liquid.

Put a lid on it

Make sure the lid is on properly – and don’t be tempted to lift it off mid cook for a nosy – it will take a long time to regain the lost heat.

If it’s looking to watery towards the end of the cooking time, this is the time to remove the lid. The extra liquid will evaporate thickening up your dinner.

Set the time carefully, go for a slower longer cook, over a faster hotter cook for deeper flavours and more tender meat.

Buy big

My top tip is to buy big! I stupidly bought a small one. I should have bought one like this. When you go to the effort of making a slow cooked meal, always double up on quantities so you have a few spares to put in the freezer. Cooking in a small one just seems like a waste!

Whilst most crock-pots have a removable “crock”, some are one piece – avoid these models as they’ll be a nightmare to clean!

Finally

Try making stock in your slow cooker – I always get great results and find it needs a lot less attention than when I do it on the stove.

One of my favourite things about slow cooking as that it allows me to use cheap cuts of meat, that would be tough in a faster cooking method. So when you see cheap cuts on offer – buy them and make a slow cooked dish with them!

Whatever you do – don’t use lean meat! Fat not only helps with flavour but will keep the meat moist instead of tough and dry.

For the same reason I also keep bones in and keep the skin on the chicken.

Finally, for maximum flavour wait until just before the end of the cooking time to add in your herbs and spices.

Now try these

Here are some of my slow cooker recipes:

Slow Cooker Chicken Coconut Veggie Stew

Creamy Coconut Slow Cooker Beef

Slow Cooker Jamaican Goat Curry

If you’ve got a slow cooker, which model do you have? Have you got any tip tips to share?

The Paleo Recipe Book

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Recipe: Paleo Hummus

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