I am a little scared of using the word “paleo” so I put it in quotes. By doing this I am conveying my fond hope that people reading this will not argue with me over the merits of almond/coconut flour and/or eating paleo in general. To clarify, I am NOT paleo. I didn’t even know what “eating paleo” means until recently.
We got a random free magazine in the mail called Outside. Living in Oregon made me enjoy being outside – mosquitoes were a non-issue and the summertime humidity attendant to living on the swamp of Washington, D.C. does not exist there. The first time I flew home after I moved, I got out of the plane at Dulles and the wall of humidity hit me. I was like, What is this feeling?! I hadn’t been gone that long but I had already forgotten the sticky air of the DC Metro area. Oregon didn’t make me a hiker or trail runner, though. I just sat on my patio all the time, and trotted about my neighborhood for exercise.
So I’d never subscribe to Outside, but there was an interesting article in it called “The Truth About Paleo” by Nick Heil (Outside, June 2013, pp.54-58). I use readers now, instead of the magnifying glass, and I made the effort to wade through the text, pausing once to laugh when I realized how close I was holding the magazine to my face. It was very informative – apparently Loren Cordain’s article, “Paleolithic Nutrition” in a 1985 issue of the NEJournal of Medicine started this whole business by laying out “a compelling argument that the healthiest human diet looks a lot more like what our Stone Age ancestors ate that the sugar-and-fat laden food Americans mostly rely on…” And in his 2002 book, The Paleo Diet, Cordain “urged readers to abandon grains, dairy, and excessive sugar and salt in favor of meat, fish, poultry, fruits, vegetables, and nuts…” – essentially a pre-agriculture diet.
It took a few years after the 2002 book for the paleo idea to gain traction, but it’s mainstream now. The funniest line in Heil’s article states, “Research hasn’t caught up with some of its acolytes’ most ambitious assertions, but what the movement lacks in double-blind studies it makes up for with rabid testimonials.” A “rabid” paleo. Tee hee.
It’s true – I’ve heard/read how some people say that adopting the paleo lifestyle is the best thing ever. EVER. But now that I’ve cleared up the matter of what “paleo” actually means, let me just say again that I am not paleo. Although I limit my intake, I do consume grains and dairy. I’ve been informed that now is not the time to cut things out of my diet wholesale and I know intuitively that this probably isn’t the best time health-wise for me to make drastic changes. I lived and ate healthily pre-AVM, but now I’m trying to eat healthier without making any overly drastic changes.
I know – you’re shocked because it seems like I’m always posting grain-free cookies or something. Well, that’s because I’m trying not to eat too many cookies, but in the event that I do eat a cookie (since I am a Cookie Monster) I’d prefer it not to contain flour. Many of my experiments are nut or nut-butter based, and I do consider them “treats.” Moderation is good in all things, especially for me since my mobility is not what it used to be. Side note: No matter how “healthy” your diet, a sedentary lifestyle is not optimal. Get up and move!
So after this very long introduction, I’ll give you the recipe for “paleo” porridge. This is a nice alternative to oatmeal. The texture is like cream of wheat. I really enjoy hot cereal – e.g. quinoa porridge. And although I’ve resisted buying any alternative flours, Mommy picked up a couple of bags: almond flour from the Indian grocery store (I think she was going to make macaroons, but we might be over it since we found a lovely macaroon assortment at Trader Joe’s), and coconut flour from the cooking section at Home Goods or something. Thanks, Mom! What I like about this is that you get to choose your flour (almond or coconut) and the fruit base. It takes a minute to microwave, so if you have almond or coconut on hand, this is as easy as instant oatmeal – and the fruit is the natural sweetener.
serves 1 – this is a small “me” portion so feel free to add whatever you like to make it bigger
2 Tb coconut or almond flour
2 Tb unsweetened applesauce or a ~3in chunk of banana
milk or choice (for mixing) – as always, I used TJ’s unsweetened vanilla almond
Use a large bowl or 2c measuring cup bc you don’t want your porridge to overflow as it heats. If using banana, melt the banana in the microwave for 30 seconds (to facilitate mixing). Mix the coconut or almond flour into the melted banana or applesauce. Add enough milk so you achieve your desired hot cereal consistency. I like to make mine a thick paste, microwave it, and then add more milk to cool it down and make it just right for me. It also makes me think I’m adding bulk if I put more milk in later. Microwave for 1 minute (or less) – your preference. Let it cool a bit bc it’s hot! Add your mix ins (e.g. desiccated coconut, cinnamon, PB2, raisins, nuts) and dig in.
P.S. I’m on the mend but still a little bleary-eyed, so this week will be very recipe-heavy!
P.P.S. I’ve started to get more search engine referrals for recipes. I get referrals on all sorts of topics – the more subjects I write about, the more opportunities there are for me to get indexed and referred to. I think it’s the funniest thing ever to look at my SEReferrals – I’ve even gotten a couple in other languages! Have you noticed the “What Country Are you From” page? This might be the usual deal in cyberspace, but I am ridiculously pleased to keep on seeing new countries pop up on my Stats screen. I’ve been keeping track over the past couple of months and just updated for May. I might be so happy bc I can’t fly for long periods presently so this is the only way I’ll ever see many of the countries listed. But I’d be happier if my readership would grow consistently in the countries I’m in. They’ll show up on the list even if there’s only one view in the history of time. I’m thankful for that one view, but would love to see more – so please keep sharing! (Easy sharing buttons are on the bottom of each post.)
Oh yeah -I’ve noticed the “usual deal in cyberspace” is for people to share every post on FB. I originally wanted to keep my media channels wholly separate, but I’ve started posting my blog regularly on FB and will continue to do so since people might not come here but they might see something of interest they’ll click on in their Facebook feed.
P.P.P.S. I updated my prayer requests – thank you!