Paleo BBQ Sauce

Admittedly, barbecue sauce is a very personal thing.  I tried many praised recipes before I managed to put this one together.  I’m quite picky, you see.  My favorite BBQ sauce is Stubbs Hickory Bourbon, which I can’t find locally for some reason.  Never mind that, there’s straight up sugar in Stubbs’ ingredients, and I cannot determine how much.  Yes, there is coconut sugar in my recipe here, but at least I know the percentage of sugar to other ingredients.  My secret ingredient here (at least, it was secret until this posting…) is the apple butter.  Good stuff, I tell ya.  Anyhoo, this seemed to fit my palate quite nicely.  Hope you like it too.

7-oz jar tomato paste
1 T bacon grease
¼ c. pear white wine vinegar
¼ c. honey
2 T prepared mustard
2 T paleo apple butter
2 T coconut sugar
1 t onion powder
1 t garlic powder
1 t chili powder
½ t cumin
½ t pink Himalayan salt

Melt bacon grease into the tomato paste. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Simmer five minutes. Store in airtight jar in fridge.

Spiced Pecans

I have a spiced pecan addiction.  I think I might need help.  These poor pecans don’t stand a chance in my presence.  No matter how hard I try to lay off, if they are within reach, I must finish them.  Now.

I love making these around the holiday season, but honestly they are good any time in a spring mix salad.  With cranberries and feta cheese.  Ohhhhhh, yyyyeaaaahhhhhhhh.


Citrus Cream Sauce

I found this recipe on one of Martha Stewart’s sites a couple of years ago.  I can’t recall exactly where it came from, and I thank my lucky stars that I had the foresight to paste the recipe into a document on my computer.  I was later able to tweak it a bit for a paleo version.

You should probably know that I am technically “paleo plus dairy.”  Not having any ill effects from the consumption of dairy, I still use it in my recipes.  Whipping cream from grass-fed cows is the best.  Organic Valley has some good options, too, though I’m not entirely convinced that their cows are not grain-fed, even though the feed would be organic and without GMOs.  Organic Valley can be found in most stores’ organic dairy sections.


Mushroom Broth

Shortly after I gave up using olive oil for sautéing, I began to cook with vegetable broth.  While it was a healthier alternative, it wasn’t very flavorful.  I needed something with some graceful punch, I guess.  Enter the mushroom broth recipe, which I have adapted from Crackers on the Couch.  I make a huge batch of this broth and can it up for later use, then I blend the solids up to make homemade Cream of Mushroom soup.  This is the life!

Note to pet owners: Our oldest pup, Mason, LOVED this broth on his food during his later years.  We would heat 1/4 cup in the microwave for 15 seconds before stirring it into his bowl.  Because I controlled all the ingredients, I knew his diet sensitivities wouldn’t be triggered by the broth.


Paleo Worcestershire Sauce

Woo Ingredients

When I was little it was very hard for me to wrap my head and my tongue around the word “Worcestershire.”  Admittedly, sometimes it still is.  So I shortened the word to “Woo” and my parents followed suit.  To this day, my parents and I still call it “woo-sauce” while everyone else pronounces “Worcestershire” flawlessly.  Show-offs.

My original search for paleo woo-sauce recipes yielded few happy results.  I must confess here that I detest apple cider vinegar (ACV).  I tried, peeps, I tried!  I have cooked with it, conditioned my hair with it, applied it to bug bites, and I even tossed it down my own throat.  Egad!!  Yes, yes, I know that it is super-healthy and great for absolutely everything.  It’s a staple in most paleo households.  I get it.  But, so is kale, and I’m allergic to that, so I reserve the right to be persnickety.  Every time I cook with ACV, my entire household complains of the smell.  ACV grosses me out, and I have yet to be pleased with any recipe that called for it.  I have rescued many of my homemade sauce recipes by switching to a myriad of other vinegars for results more pleasing to me and my family.  So there.

That being said, I have adapted this recipe from Paleo Table.  I tweaked it until I was satisfied with the smoky aroma and flavor, and then I bumped up the quantities so I could make more at a time.  If you happen to have a large empty commercial-woo bottle, this recipe will fill it to the brim.  I use this sauce along with my homemade steak sauce in grilled hamburger patties.  Yum!


The Day I Put My Arthur Court in the Dishwasher


Yes, it happens to the best of us. We’re rocking along, cleaning the kitchen after a party, when we grab our beautiful Arthur Court platter that has just been used as a cheese tray or whatever. We rinse it and without thinking we put it in the dishwasher with the wine glasses and serving utensils. It’s metal, right? Metal washes.

The horror doesn’t set in until you unload the dishwasher. That’s when you find this dull, grey, chalky metallic plate that makes your fingernails want to retreat into your cuticles. And then you realize what it is – or dare I say, what it used to be. Your beloved platter, likely a wedding gift or such, is only barely recognizable as you turn the piece over in your hands, reading the back of it in complete self-loathing: Hand Wash Only.

Mine was a small tray, given to me by the builder of my house and his wife on the occasion of my house-warming party. It is suitably themed with magnolia blossoms – perfect for my Louisiana kitchen. I keep it near my stovetop as a place to rest spoons and ladles. Then one day I ran it through the dishwasher and thought it would never be the same again.

I did the same thing you’re doing. I Googled for help. I sought the wisdom and reassurance of other Arthur Court owners that my tray could be restored. I went to the store and purchased everything they said to buy: Bar Keeper’s Friend, Bon Ami, baking soda. I tried it all. I barely got any change in color with the use of the scrubs. I tried for a solid week, sick over the fact that I had been so careless in the first place. I tried pewter cleaners. I tried Naambi cleaners. I used silver cleaner, thinking – at the very least – it couldn’t get any worse. But it didn’t get any better, either. The tray remained a dark, matte, lifeless charcoal color.

OK, if you’re here on purpose, then you want to know if anything at all worked on my tray, and the answer is yes. And it was the simplest thing. An SOS pad. For real. The solution costs all of, what, 29 cents? It didn’t make it good-as-new immediately, but brought a little bit of shine back, and a significant amount of hope. So I continued to scrub my tray with an SOS pad every time I thought about it, which was each night when I was loading the dishwasher. Within a few scrubs, the tray looked good enough to display on the counter once more. It has since resumed both its usefulness as a spoon rest and its charm as a decoration. It is not exactly as it was in the beginning, but there are no longer as many dark grey splotches or streaks.  It shines again and that is certainly good enough for me. I scrub it with an SOS pad every time I clean the kitchen now, and I swear it gets shinier each time.

The photo shows my tray as it looks now.  No, I did not take a photo of it when it was awful and dull.  I was too heartbroken.  May your Arthur Court restoration be successful!

Buona fortuna!!


Paleo Steak Sauce

Steak Sauce

I cannot believe my luck!  This is one recipe I did not have to tweak!!  It’s a spot-on duplicate of A-1 that I found on Everyday Maven’s site.  You can even compare the ingredients to the list on A-1.  It’s got all of the good stuff and none of the junk!  Seriously, even my mother-in-law liked it!

Everyday Maven has photos of the process, and since her recipe is perfect as-is, I won’t list it all out here unless I ever feel the need to tweak it.  Please visit her site and show her some appreciation for the paleo version of everyone’s favorite steak sauce.

I had saved an empty medium-sized bottle of A-1, and the quantity in this recipe fills it nicely.  I primarily use this sauce to marinate steaks and season hamburger patties.