Roasted Chestnuts

Roasted chestnuts are so comforting! Rich, warm, buttery and flavorful, all they need is roasting – sure, you could drizzle them with seasoned butter if you wish but truly, roasted chestnuts are amazing on their own.

The roasting itself is easy – it’s peeling roasted chestnuts that most find challenging. I have learned over the years that the best way to ensure relatively easy peeling is to peel the chestnuts while they’re still hot – maybe not hot enough to burn your fingers, but hot enough for it to feel uncomfortable! Once cooled, roasted chestnuts are very difficult to peel. Click for the recipe

Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie

This creamy, very flavorful gluten-free pumpkin pie has a nutty, delicious almond flour crust. I typically try recipes 2-3 times before I feel I can publish them here (or before I give up on them). In the case of this gluten free pumpkin pie, I’ve made so many attempts that my husband was calling me “Monica” – remember the “Friends” episode where she makes 22 batches of chocolate chip cookies in an attempt to “make the best chocolate chip cookies in the world?”

So yes, I worked very hard on this one, but the result is amazing. And the good news: it’s actually easier to make an almond flour pie crust than to make regular flour crust – no need to roll the dough or to worry about overworking it – overworking elongates the gluten strands, creating a tough crust, but this is not a concern with gluten free crust. Click for the recipe

Vegetable Beef Soup

Rich, flavorful vegetable beef soup makes a comforting start to a winter meal, and is hearty enough to be served as a main course for four. Click for the recipe

Sausage Stuffing

A very flavorful sausage stuffing that proves once and for all that your Thanksgiving stuffing does not need bread to taste good! Click for the recipe

Crustless Pumpkin Pie

A creamy, delicious crustless pumpkin pie that has tons of flavor but far fewer calories than traditional pumpkin pie. Unlike my previous recipe for crustless pumpkin pie, it’s more of a classic pumpkin pie (not a pumpkin pie/pumpkin cheesecake hybrid). This crustless pumpkin pie is also gluten-free, refined-sugar free, and low carb. Click for the recipe

cabbage casserole

This flavorful cabbage casserole has all the flavors of stuffed cabbage, but with much less work. This lower-carb version omits the rice and adds cayenne – I added it at the last minute and I think it really enhances the dish.

I like to use the Pomi brand of chopped tomatoes because the packaging is BPA free, the tomatoes contain no added sugar or salt, and also because these Italian tomatoes are sweeter than American canned diced tomatoes. Click for the recipe

Paleo Meatloaf

This tasty Paleo meatloaf is made without breadcrumbs, and since I don’t use breadcrumbs, I also don’t add an egg, or any other filler (such as cheese). It’s pure meat and seasonings, and the resulting loaf, though small in size (because of the lack of fillers), is big on flavor.

Besides not needing eggs or breadcrumbs in a meatloaf (I used to think they act as binders, but truly they are not needed except to add bulk), and definitely not needing a sauce (the meatloaf is very flavorful as is), I have three more Paleo meatloaf tips for you:

1. Bake the meatloaf on a large baking sheet, not in a loaf pan. Loaf pans make wet, soggy meatloaves. Freeform meatloaves baked on large pans are nicely crisp and browned on the outside, tender and juicy on the inside.

2. Don’t use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. Normally I am a big believer in the use of digital thermometers as the best way to ensure meat doneness, but in this case, pricking the meatloaf with the thermometer’s probe will result in unfortunate loss of meat juices upon the probe’s exit.

3. Make ahead. If you make this Paleo meatloaf the day before (or in the morning for that night’s dinner), it’s even better – sitting in the fridge gives the flavors time to meld, and the texture improves too. At dinnertime, simply slice into 8 slices, and quickly saute them in olive oil, 2-3 minutes per side over medium heat. This step really brings out the flavor of the seasonings. Click for the recipe