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Paleo By Season’s Atkilt (Spiced Ethiopian Vegetable Stew)

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Paleo By Season’s Atkilt (Spiced Ethiopian Vegetable Stew)

Autumn may trigger pumpkin spice cravings in most folks, but for me? Not so much. I yearn instead for hearty Ethiopian fare. It’s not just because I’m contrary by nature, like my mom. (I know you’re shaking your head, mom, but it’s true.) As longtime readers know from my Doro Wat recipe post, I fell in love with Ethiopian cuisine during my first semester in college. Naturally, the return of crisp, fall weather always stirs up memories of chowing on comforting stews at my favorite Ethiopian joints in Berkeley.

In other words, I’m feeling old and wistful about my glory days.

Paleo By Season’s Atkilt (Spiced Ethiopian Vegetable Stew)

Thankfully, to scratch that nostalgic itch, I can turn to my review copy of Chef Peter Servold’s Paleo By Season. For those of you who don’t know Pete, he’s the classically trained chef behind Pete’s Paleo, a fantastic Paleo meal service that ships all over the U.S. Like all the best chefs, Peter knows that the quality of a dish hinges on the use of fresh, local, and seasonal ingredients. And in his beautiful cookbook, Pete groups his recipes by season (hence the title!) so that readers can cook the best of the available bounty.

Paleo By Season’s Atkilt (Spiced Ethiopian Vegetable Stew)

Flipping through the “Fall” section of Pete’s cookbook, I yelped. I’d discovered not one, but three Ethiopian recipes. My favorite of this trio happens to be the simplest: Atkilt, a humble spiced root vegetable stew. I’d tinkered with my own recipe in the past, but I never quite nailed the flavor combination—and my attempts sometimes came out overly mushy, too.

Thankfully, early in his career, Pete worked at an Ethiopian restaurant—and not surprisingly, his version of Atkilt is spot-on. I was instantly transported back to my days as a wide-eyed freshman at Cal. All that was missing was my dorky tie-dyed leggings, jangly Telegraph Avenue jewelry, and cockroach-kickin’ Doc Martens boots. 

Ready to check out Pete’s recipe?

Paleo By Season’s Atkilt (Spiced Ethiopian Vegetable Stew)

Here’s what to gather to serve 4-6 people as a side dish:

  • 2 tablespoons ghee
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 small green cabbage (1 pound), cored and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 4 medium carrots (1 pound), cut into 1-inch rounds
  • 3 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1¾ pounds white potatoes, cut into 1-inch cubes (you can substitute cauliflower florets if you don’t eat potatoes—but hey, did you hear that potatoes are now Whole30-approved?)
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

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Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Bonus: Snacks!)

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Just when you thought Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 was over, I’ve got one more tasty installment to pull you back in! And what better way to keep you motivated to pack your own meals than to show you some of my favorite sweet and savory snacks packed in super cute LunchBots containers?

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Bonus: Snacks!) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Disclaimer: Everyone knows that fruits and vegetables are the best items to round out your packed lunches. No one’ll argue about that point—not the  omnivores, vegans, or Paleo Patrol. But let’s get real: sometimes, you just crave something crunchy, salty, and/or sweet. I totally get it. 

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Bonus: Snacks!) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Big-O, my 9 year-old, is a big fan of crispy and salty foods. Similar to my hubby, he’s never met a chip-like food he didn’t like. Thankfully, that can mean roasted seaweed snacks (I like SeaSnax and GimMe brands)…

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Bonus: Snacks!) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…homemade vegetable chips (like my homemade kale or mushroom chips)…

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Bonus: Snacks!) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

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Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 7)

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It’s Labor Day, and that means that most kiddos (in the U.S., anyway) will be back in school for sure this week. WAHOO! Thank goodness for all those selfless and patient individuals awesome enough to be teachers. (Hi, Ms. Lin—I know you’re reading this!) 

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 7 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

As you pack away your summertime apparel (goodbye, linen pants and white shoes!), let me share with you my last installment of Paleo Lunchboxes 2014. This lovely packed LunchBots bento is crammed with some of our family’s favorite finger foods: Lazy Devils (recipe in my cookbook and app) and Simple Crab Salad-stuffed tomatoes!

Again, don’t feel compelled to replicate this lunchbox exactly—the fun is in modifying any and all components to fit your own tastes. (In other words: yes, I know you’re a special snowflake.)

For example, the Lazy Devils are also super-customizable. Feel free to top your halved Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs with whatever you have on hand. In Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans, I offer tons of ideas on how to spice up your hard cooked eggs. See?

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 7 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

And if you happen to be allergic to shellfish, please don’t eat the crab salad stuffed tomatoes with a side of EpiPen. Instead, mix up a batch of Spicy Salmon Salad or Madras Chicken salad (the recipe for the latter’s available in my cookbook and iPad app), and spoon them into the edible tomato cups.

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 7 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Pro tip: use smaller tomatoes than I did. I used plus-size heirloom tomatoes to pretty ’em up for photos, but the only way the lid’s going to fit is by smashing the stuffing (literally!) out of them.

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 7 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Ready to check out how to assemble this portable feast?

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Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 6)

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I bet the last thing you wanna do on this glorious Friday (before a three-day weekend, no less!) is think about packing a lunch, but I’m hoping I can nudge you in the right direction with the sixth installment of Paleo Lunchboxes 2014. Who can resist a beautiful and satisfying salad tucked into a lovely LunchBots container? Not me!

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 6 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Besides, even if your wee ones gag at the thought of tucking into a salad, there’s nothing that says these boxes have to be for kids. Last time I checked, adults need lunches, too.

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 6 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

If you’ve got a peach, some thinly sliced prosciutto…

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 6 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…fresh salad greens…

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 6 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…and a handful of pistachios…

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 6 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…you’re in business: make my Watercress with Seared Prosciutto + Peaches! You’ll love the balance of savory and sweet—and the fact that prepping this salad takes almost no time at all.

Remember: If peaches aren’t your cup of tea, you can always use apples, nectarines, or pears instead. Not a fan of watercress? No problem—substitute your favorite leafy greens. Just promise me you’ll make your lunch, okay?

Here are a few tips to ensure that your salad tastes great when you crack open your LunchBots at mealtime:

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Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 5)

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Out of packed lunch ideas? Fear not, Nomsters: I’ll save the day with Part 5 of Paleo Lunchboxes 2014, my collaboration with the super-stainless-steel-container-makers at LunchBots!

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 5 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Today’s packed lunch shines the spotlight on one of my favorite finger foods: Egg Foo Young patties! These portable protein- and veggie-packed savory pancakes are totally customizable with whatever you have sitting in your fridge. (Except for maybe that mushy pile of melting vegetables that you forgot about in the back of your crisper.)

My original recipe for Egg Foo Young is up on this blog, but readers of my cookbook know that I’ve since published a streamlined version in Nom Nom Paleo: Food For Humans. (If you don’t have my cookbook—shame, shame! Lucky for you, I don’t hold a grudge. You can find adaptations of my Egg Foo Young recipe here and here.)

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 5 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

I’m not pulling your leg when I say that Egg Foo Young’s a crowd pleaser and so dang easy to make. Seriously: I even made a batch for Chef Pete Evans when we cooked together back in March—on camera!—because I knew there was no chance I’d goof.

For today’s lunch, I’ve paired these tasty patties with a warm thermal LunchBots container filled with Garbage Soup because they’re a match made in lunch heaven.

Paleo Lunchboxes 2014 (Part 5 of 7) by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Ready to make this lunch? Then read up on my pro tips to ensure perfect Egg Foo Young patties!

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