Category Archives: lard

Seared Sage Pork Chops with Apples and Cardamom, aka ENJOY DUCK FAT RESPONSIBLY

Mother Nature weeps.

She blows, gusts and storms, pounding through the east coast.

I hope you are all keeping safe while Hurricane Sandy thrashes about outside.

She’s clearly mad because she doesn’t have enough fat in her diet.

Rainy weather always brings a particular song to mind, from my favourite band of all time, James:

There’s a storm outside, and the gap between crack and thunder
Crack and thunder, is closing in, is closing in
The rain floods gutters, and makes a great sound on concrete
On a flat roof, there’s a boy leaning against the wall of rain
Aerial held high, calling “come on thunder, come on thunder”
Sometimes, when I look deep in your eyes, I swear I can see your soul
Sometimes, when I look deep in your eyes, I swear I can see your soul

I hope our power doesn’t go out as I type this.

As you all know, I’ve been on a super strict eating regimen since late July thanks to numerous food intolerances. This means no eggs, no dairy, no gluten (gee, that’s a hard one), and certain vegetables and spices. As per Mark Sisson’s Primal Blueprint, I could be eating dairy if my body allowed it.

But it sure doesn’t. Congestion follows; I really don’t need that in my life.

I feel like I should rename the site to PaleoPat, as I’m hardly scarfing any dairy. But alas, PaleoPat doesn’t have the same ring to it as PrimalPat, now does it?

Edited March 27th, 2015. It’s amazing what ‘symptoms’ we convince ourselves we have because we were told we have ‘intolerances’. I was never intolerant to anything. IgG tests are bullshit. I spent nearly $500 on mine.

Fall is upon us, and if it wasn’t screaming wind and hurling rain outside, it would be rather lovely: copper, scarlet and gold leaves teasing us from solemn trees.

This also means tucking in to a bowl of savoury stew, squash, ripe apples, and pumpkins. Flavours that harmonize well with cinnamon, cloves, and sage.

Okay. Are you sitting down?

Good.

You like pork, right?

Wait. Of course you do. You’re reading my blog.

I bought three mammoth sized pork chops with the bone-in from Medium Rare and created a dish that’s perfect for a miserable evening such as this.

But really. Any evening will do. Especially if you need cheering up. I promise: this meal will make you go “OH MY GOD” and “HOLY $#@!” because as usual, it’s luscious, rich, and if…if…you’ve fallen off the Primal/Paleo bandwagon, fear not. Despite your binge of processed white flour, sugar and rancid omega-6 laden fats… OMG PAT STFU. WHITE FLOUR, SUGAR AND ALL FATS ARE DELICIOUSABLE.  

you’ll feel like you came home once the combination of pork, duck fat, sage and apples flirt with your tongue.

I promise.

Or I’m not PrimalPat.

Dammit.

Now…

DUCK FAT.

Yes, there it is. DUCK FAT.

Can you dig it? I was passionately in love with the wild boar lard I purchase fervently from Medium Rare. I dream about it. I salivate just thinking about it.

(Okay, no I don’t…yes, I do…no…wait).

But after Canadian Thanksgiving, I stopped on by, looked in their fridge to happily embrace two tubs of it…

…but…

…THEY WERE SOLD OUT.

OH GOD!

Heart palpitations. Shallow breathing. Sweaty palms.

Okay, I need my animal fats, and I need them NAOW.

Wait. What’s this?

Duck fat?

Hmmmmmm. Okay, let’s do it.

I seared my pork chops in some duck fat when I made this dish. Later on that evening, when I was ravenous and needed something to eat, I dug in. That’s when my taste buds screamed:

“You’ve taken the exit from Same Ol’, Same Ol’ Highway into FLAVOUR CITY OH MY GOD!!!!11!!!1111!1!1!1”

So on, and so forth.

Please enjoy duck fat responsibly.

Seared Sage Pork Chops with Apples and Cardamom

Three mammoth sized pork chops with the bone-in, roughly 1″ thick
A very generous cracking of black pepper
Sea salt, himalayan salt, whatever
Generous amount of dried sage
A sprinkling of onion powder
5 cloves
5 cardamom pods
1 Royal Gala apples, cut into chunks. Use what you have.
THE MIGHTY AND SCRUMPTIOUS DUCK FAT…MAY INDUCE FOODGASMS ABOUND. I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE IF YOUR WIFE/HUSBAND/SIGNIFICANT OTHER/CAT/DOG DISPLACES YOU FOR DUCK FAT. FAT LUST IS SERIOUS BUSINESS.

It happens.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Coat your awesome pork chops in all dried spices, except the cloves and cardamom. In a pan over medium high heat, melt your OHMAHGAWDSOAMAZING duck fat, roughly one tablespoon. Sear your pork chops until beautifully golden brown. Remove from your pan, and set these aside in a roasting pan.

Add your apples to the frying pan, and sauté over medium heat in the leftover fat and herbs for about 15 minutes. Add an extra dash or two of dried sage, and season with salt and pepper. Add in your cloves and cardamom pods*.

*Gently crack your cardamom pods before adding them; this way they can release their fragrant citrus notes and party hard with your pork and apples. Continue cooking for another 3 – 5 minutes, covered.

Add this glorious mixture to your pork. Now whack the whole thing into the oven for approximately 15 – 20 minutes. Don’t overcook your pork, or I’ll come over and slap you. Dried pork is shameful.

SHAMEFUL!

Don’t disappoint me. That hurts. Right here.

*points in general heart direction*

I should also let you all know…I’m currently out of duck fat…AND lard…

…OH GOD! THE END IS NEAR!

Remember: enjoy luscious animal fats responsibly. Now if you excuse me, I have to find something to eat…

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AHM SUCH A BIG DEAL MAMA MEATBALLS!

I know, I know. You’ve seen my post, and you’re mad.

“Pat, what the $%#@ took you so long?!”

In the past few months, I married, honeymoon-ed, and moved into a new house. It was a stressful, but a very exciting time. Also, MOVING SUCKS. Moving is like ONE LONG CROSSFIT WORKOUT. We’re never doing this again.

Linda and I were unpacking clothing in our dual walk-in closets, cursing like sailors.

“$#@! WE’RE NEVER, EVER MOVING EVER AGAIN”

But wait. I’m sure you want proof that we got married. I’m the blonde. Linda’s the hotter one 🙂

At the end of July, I discovered I have a ton of food allergies.

My naturopathic doc took a blood sample from me earlier in the month and shipped it off to Washington. I went in for a followup appointment the day after returning from honeymoon, which was in Los Angeles, by-the-way. We had an awesome time. I’d live there. Not permanently. The US lack of a health care system is ridiculous.

Back to my insane food allergies. LOOK AT THESE FOOD ALLERGIES:

Eggs…AVOID! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
Dairy….moderate…but it may as well say AVOID!
Gluten….moderate…oh well. I’ve been avoiding it anyway.
Brewers yeast….no beer for me. This is only slightly upsetting. BUT COME ON.
Spices like cumin, ginger, turmeric, vanilla, paprika, nutmeg. Vegetables like kale! KALE!

I very nearly cried in my doc’s office. What the %$#@ was I going to eat?

After a few weeks, I got over it. Symptoms I’ve had for years and years started disappearing: dark circles under my eyes, post-nasal drip. Discovering these allergies actually made things a lot simpler for me. I started eating a lot more seafood: canned sardines, canned wild salmon, shrimp. An entire avocado is usually part of breakfast.

In talking with my doctor, we realized I have a case of adrenal fatigue. Your adrenals are a major part of your overall health and well-being. They regulate your immune system and blood sugar levels. Food allergies, and being overly sensitive to certain scents are a typical symptom of adrenal fatigue. Never feeling well-rested no matter how much you sleep is yet another sign of adrenal fatigue. It’s a vicious cycle. For my readers suffering from candida, it usually arises because of adrenal fatigue. In fact, I’m confident in saying that if you treat the main source of your problem, which in this case, is adrenal fatigue, the rest should probably, well, EFF OFF.

At the suggestion of an herbalist, I’m now taking liquorice root powder a few times a day in some water. My sleep has improved, and I don’t really feel the need to drink tea in the morning as I normally would. I do anyway, because I love yerba mate. Things are not perfect, but they are a step in the right direction.

I’ll blog properly about the adrenals one day very soon. I have loads of ideas for upcoming blog posts. I promise I’ll behave.

Edited March 27th, 2015. OMG SO MUCH INCORRECT BS.

Maybe.

Now on to a stupendous meal. My cat Harry plays a part in the making of this meal. You’ll get to meet him. I sincerely hope you enjoy this as much as I did. It is intensely rich, incredibly flavourful, nourishing and delicious!

AHM SUCH A BIG DEAL MAMA MEATBALLS

2 lbs ground lamb
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons each: roughly chopped fresh oregano, fresh basil, fresh mint, plus 1 extra tablespoon each oregano and basil
1 whole head of garlic
1 700ml bottle pureed tomatoes (yeah, mine came in a BOTTLE)
1 28oz can diced tomatoes
Lard
1/2 large onion, roughly chopped

Combine lamb, salt, pepper, garlic powder, 2 tablespoons each fresh oregano, basil, mint. Mix this up thoroughly so everything is evenly combined. Roll into large meatballs. You’ll make 6 big ones.

Fry in lard until your meatballs are nicely browned all over. Set them aside.

Melt some extra lard in large pot over medium heat. Add onions, stirring until translucent and lightly browned. Add pureed and diced tomatoes. That entire head of garlic? I want you to smash it all up, but no chopping. Leave the cloves whole, but SMASHY SMASHY. Add to tomatoes. Add your 1 extra tablespoon oregano. Bring to boil. Turn down to medium low and simmer for about an hour to reduce. This sauce will get thick and concentrated with flavour. It’s food-gasmic. Don’t forget to stir frequently. You can burn tomatoes!

Harry doesn’t like it when I smash garlic. He scurries low to the ground and vamooses out of the kitchen.

OH MAMA AH DO NOT LIKE IT WEN U SMASH DA GARLIK. WAI U GOTTA B SEW MEAN. DAT GARLIK IS SEW NICE LIKE ME U NO.

Add meatballs to reduced sauce. Cook for about 20 – 30 minutes. Add the extra tablespoon of basil at the very end.

Serve this on top of baby spinach; the heat will wilt and cook them nicely. Or spaghetti squash. Or even a roasted sweet potato. The possibilities are exquisite!

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Sweet ‘n Sticky True Blood Sweet Potato Fries with Roasted Plums, and Lip-Smackin’ Lamb

Hi kids.

It is sunny, hot, muggy and humid.

That is an observation, not a complaint. I’ll take it over winter any day.

I haven’t been posting food epic-ness in a while, not because I don’t cook, or because I don’t love you. But because I’ve been eating the same boring shite for weeks!

Meat, fat, veggies. Repeat. Nothing exciting enough to post for you lovelies. I do have one trick up my sleeve though. Sweet ‘n sticky True Blood Sweet Potato Fries and Roasted Plums. These were made weeks ago. I filed them in my brain under “Post Later”. Why the True Blood reference? First of all, I am obsessed with the show, and am truly enjoying the latest season. I added plums to the mixture, and once they cooked down, their juices and skin wept, oozing dark crimson red that glistened and gleamed, like blood. My iPhone camera simply did not do these tasty morsels justice. You’ll know what I mean when you whip these up.

I know some of you have found my site looking for help and advice in dealing with candida. I am no expert, and am not a medical practitioner. I have spent months researching, and practically ripping my hair out in frustration. This is an awful affliction, and I would wish it upon no one. In reading about hormone imbalances, I’ve now come to the conclusion that my candida may be a problem of estrogen dominance. I have contacted a naturopathic clinic in Toronto as a last resort. I’ve had it with this crap. I’ve also considered traditional chinese medicine, which I may still look into. We’ll see.

I will list some examples of anti-fungals one should add into their diet to weaken candida. I will also mention that it helps to rotate anti-fungals. Candida is one sneaky bitch. She’ll get used to one anti-fungal, and when she does, you have to switch.

Coconut oil – this magical oil is comprised of medium-chain triglycerides, which your body will burn for energy immediately. It is also extremely high in lauric acid, second to breast milk. Lauric acid is anti-fungal. It is best to take coconut oil on an empty stomach, but I’m warning you: die-off symptoms of candida are brutal, and coconut oil produces some of the worst, I found. Think nausea, bloating, and gas. I feel like vomit for hours after taking coconut oil. In fact, right now, I can’t even stand the smell of it.

Kyolic garlic supplements – this is aged garlic that is super-concentrated. I took several high dose (1000mg) a day for a month. Be sure to rotate, and be forewarned: die-off symptoms are yucky.

Onions – add onions to everything you cook, as they are nature’s anti-fungal as well as garlic. Raw garlic is best, but wow, oh wow…the pain and discomfort of die-off!

Oil of oregano – this oil is a real killer. I always have some in case of sniffles or flu-like symptoms arise. You need the super potent version, however. Look for 90% and above potency. Carvacrol is the active ingredient. Take an eye-dropper full under the tongue several times a day. It’s nasty, and there’s some die-off, but it’s not horrible.

I’ve also used different yeast-eating enzymes with some success. Candex was the first I tried, then Syntol, now YST Management. Remember to lay off all starchy foods (no sweet potato fries, parsnips, or even squash), no fruit, no dairy, absolutely nothing fermented (vinegar, soy sauce, alcohol), no mushrooms. Meat, fat, veggies. Repeat.

Diet will not help alone. I’ve read countless stories of men and women who’ve been on an anti-candida diet for up to two years, and still can’t get rid of it. This is why I’m finally reaching out for more help. You must be relentless in your search, no matter how crazy you think you’re going. You cannot give up. You will destroy this beast. I know I will. I have to keep reminding myself.

Edited March 27th, 2015:

THIS STUFF ABOUT CANDIDA IS BULLSHIT. CANDIDA IS WOO. SYSTEMIC CANDIDA IS PREVALENT IN TERMINALLY ILL PATIENTS, NOT YOU. PLEASE STEP AWAY FROM DR. GOOGLE AND STOP GIVING NATUROPATHIC “DOCTORS” YOUR MONEY.

Who wants some FOOD?

One evening, I threw a lamb shoulder into the oven with only a few ingredients: dried sage, dried rosemary, garam masala, salt and pepper. I smashed up a ton of garlic and stuffed it under the lamb. I blasted it in the oven on convection roast at 400 degrees for about half an hour. This is when I thought to myself, “SELF! You have PLUMS! Throw ’em in there!” I cut up two plums, and dotted the whole thing with butter, because butter = love.

After ten minutes, I realized “Dude. You suck. The lamb is nearly done and the plums ain’t”. By this time, I had sweet potato fries in the oven as well (this was before I realized I can’t have even sweet potatoes as a safe starch at all, or fruit for that matter). They had been cooking for about 20 minutes. I threw the plums in with them, adding in some juices from the lamb shoulder, and the butter. I cranked the oven up to 425 for about 10 minutes. Sizzle, bake, roast. I checked on them, and found oozy, awesome, sticky fries. WIN! I cranked the heat up again to 450 for another 10 minutes.

Let’s put this in an easy-to-understand format, shall we?

Lip-Smackin’ Lamb

1 approx. 3 lb lamb shoulder
1.5 teaspoons each: dried rosemary, dried sage, garam masala
Sea salt and pepper to taste
2 – 3 large garlic gloves, smashed, chopped, obliterated

Coat the entire lamb with your spices. Stuff your obliterated garlic under the lamb and on top. Crank your oven to 400 degrees on convection and cook for about 40 – 45 minutes. Alternately, bake at 375 for about an hour. Your lamb will be medium rare and juicy sweeeeeeeet!

Sweet ‘n Sticky True Blood Sweet Potato Fries and Roasted Plums

1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into fry-like shapes
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Cinnamon, paprika, rosemary, garlic powder, chipotle, turmeric, grated nutmeg, sage: sprinkle generously!
Lard, melted about 1 tablespoon
2 plums, cut into quarters
Butter, cut up into pieces to ‘dot’ with

Combine all the above. Crank your oven to 400 on convection if you have it. If not, do not concern yourself with trivial matters. Crank it to the same temp on normal. After about 20 minutes, toss and stir everything. Crank the heat up again to 425. Now, wait another 10 – 15 minutes. Toss, stir, coat. Crank again to 450 for 10 minutes. This is beginning to feel like that scene in Captain America where Steve Rogers is in the ‘MURICANIZING MACHINE screaming “NO! I CAN DO IT!” Yes, your sweet potatoes can do it. And yer plums.

When these are done, they will come out glistening with streaks of blood. I mean, plum goodness. Right.

Even a vampire could appreciate these. Serve with your bloody good rare lamb.

OM NOM NOM.

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