Forky Friday: 7/11/14

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Forky Friday: 7/11/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Dying to know what food-related links are top-of-mind for me this week? No? Well, just humor me anyway.

Taco Bell: Going Paleo?

Once upon a time, I proudly declared Taco Bell to be my favorite fast-food joint. As a high schooler, I made a Run To The Border™ on a regular basis with my fellow pimply-faced pals to order (and then annihilate) pile after pile of crunchy, cheesy Taco Supremes. I even wanted my very own caulking gun to squeeze reduced-fat sour cream on…well, everything. Weirdly and disgustingly enough, I have fond memories of Taco Bell. That’s why this Bloomberg article suggesting that Taco Bell’s attempting to tap into the Paleo market actually made me hopeful…for a nanosecond.

Forky Friday: 7/11/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Upon closer inspection of Taco Bell’s press release announcing its new “Cantina Power Menu,” though, it’s painfully obvious that the company’s just upping the protein on the menu without doing anything to improve the quality of the ingredients. And despite the misleading headline of the Bloomberg piece, Taco Bell’s new menu clearly doesn’t aim to be Paleo at all. After all, they should know that Paleos won’t stuff junk into our mouths just ’cause the protein volume’s been doubled. Our mascot may be a caveman, but we’re not stupid; Taco Bell’s food products—no matter how high protein or low carb—are nowhere near Paleo-friendly.

I still kind of want a Taco Supreme, though.

Guess Who (I Wish) Was Coming to Dinner

I’m not usually a fan of icebreaker activities, but there’s one get-to-know-you question I really dig. Melicious posed it to me a while back: “You can have dinner with any characters from movies, TV, or books that you want. Table for 8. Who’s at the table?”

Clearly, I have a hard time with reading comprehension, because instead of offering up a bunch of fictional characters like she asked, I spat out a list of celebrities like Andy CohenAnthony Bourdain, and George Takei. The only non-celeb on my list was BMO from Adventure Time — the best robot companion in the Land of Ooo.

But now, I’m thinking about swapping BMO out for the hardest working man in show business, Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson. Sorry, BMO, but a guy with 16 jobs trumps a cute little robot. Even one with an alter ego named Football.

Forky Friday: 7/11/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Not only has Questlove dazzled audiences (including Late Night fans) as the drummer/frontman of The Roots, but he also happens to be obsessed with eating fabulous food.

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Forky Friday: 6/27/14

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Forky Friday: 6/27/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

In the off-chance that there’s more than one person (hi, Dad!) who’s interested in what I’m checking out on the Internet this week, I’ve once again compiled my favorite food-related links of the week. Read ’em and weep!

Paleo + Celebrities

If there’s anything (other than food) I love, it’s celebrity gossip news. But it’s only now, after almost 40 years of studying trashy tabloids and Hollywood rags, that I’m starting to see Paleo elbow its way into the news (or at least the news that I care about, anyway).

In the past few weeks, a number of celebrities have publicly come out as Paleo (or Paleo-curious): not only did Robin Wright (Princess Buttercup a.k.a. Claire Underwood) open up about her (allegedly “no carb”) Paleo diet, but country superstar Tim McGraw also showed off the impressive eight-pack that he credits to CrossFit and Paleo.

Forky Friday: 6/27/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

News of weight loss and sexy washboard abs will no doubt appeal to folks on the lookout for the Next Great Diet Fad, but to me, A Great Big World’s Chad Vaccherino’s reason for going Paleo is the most inspiring: he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2007 when he was still in college. After learning about Dr. Terry Wahl’s TED Talk, he started eating Paleo and lo and behold: his symptoms went away. Amazing.

See? Who said gossip rags are filled with garbage?

Dr. Oz on the Hot Seat

Dr. Oz may have talked up the benefits of Paleo on his show a couple of times over the past year, but he’s become known for promoting a ton of sketchy “magic” weight loss products, too. Recently, the doctor was grilled by Congress for making fantastical claims about potentially scammy supplements, and then skewered by John Oliver on HBO’s Last Week Tonight to boot. 

I think I liked it better when Dr. Oz was just the guy who showed up on Oprah in hospital scrubs (hey, I don’t blame him: I know how comfy scrubs can be) and talked about the shape of his poo.

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Forky Friday: 6/13/14

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Forky Friday: 6/13/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Happy Friday the 13th! Yeah, I know it’s been a while. At the end of each week, my dear old dad’s been reminding me that I haven’t put up a new Forky Friday in eons, so I think it’s past time I put up a new post packed to the gills with my favorite finds from ’round the world wide web. So in advance of Father’s Day, this one’s for you, Pop!

Celebrate Your Dad!

Yep—Father’s Day is Sunday. THIS Sunday. Got something special planned for the big poppa in your life? If you’re still searching for a cool gift, I’ve got a feeling all the grilling guys (and gals) out there will love Chris Schlesinger’s and John “Doc” Willoughby’s The Big-Flavor Grill

Forky Friday: 6/13/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Ever since I received a review copy a few weeks ago, I’ve been testing many of the no-marinade, no-hassle recipes on our grill. The simple techniques in this book are a revelation: simply pick the right cut of protein, slap on a zero-fuss rub, grill the meat, and then toss the fire-charred goodness with a flavorful sauce. That’s it.

The Big-Flavor Grill has made a spontaneous griller out of me. It’s a game-changer.

One of my favorite dishes in the book is the recipe pictured on the book’s cover: Grilled Skirt Steak with Smoky Red Onions and Grilled Avocados. 

Forky Friday: 6/13/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

From start to finish, this meal took just 30 minutes to make. If—like me—you’ve had an irrational fear of grilling over an open flame, this book’ll get you over the hump, and it makes for an incredible Father’s Day gift.

But if you’re strapped for cash, you don’t need to buy a present to make your dad feel appreciated. Just let him know you’ll be making brunch, and reconnect with your old man over a plate of Bacon Pancake Sandwiches

Forky Friday: 6/13/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…or grill him a Chili Rib Eye Steak by following Chef Pete Evan’s drop-dead-simple technique!

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Forky Friday: 3/21/14

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Forky Friday: 3/21/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

I’m smack-dab in the middle of another week of zombie drug dealing graveyard shifts, but I’m still keeping one eye on the Internet. Here’s what’s piqued my interest this week.

But first: some shameless self-promotion!

Costco’s Got More Than Just T.P. For My Bunghole

Are you a card-carrying member of Costco? As a longtime Costco addict (who especially digs the unique products at Costco’s warehouse stores in Hawaii!), I was incredibly stoked to be interviewed for an article in the Costco Connection a few months ago. But nothing beats the news that our cookbook, Nom Nom Paleo: Food For Humans, is now being sold in hundreds of Costco stores across North America!

Forky Friday: 3/21/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

The fact that people across the continent can pick up copies of our book (at a steep discount!) while stocking up on batteries, sweatpants, diapers, and ginormous tubes of hair gel gives me the warm fuzzies. If you spy our cookbook at your local Costco, please snap a pic and tag me on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter—I will love you forever!

Plus: attention, fellow San Francisco Bay Area residents! Henry and I will be signing books at the Mountain View Costco on Saturday, March 29, 2014 from 11am to 1pm! We’ll scribble in your books as you shop for Kerrygold butter, coconut oil, mac nuts, and other Paleo staples. Who knows? We might even hand out some of our exclusive Nom Nom Paleo action figures while we’re there. Click here to let us know if you’re planning to come say hello in Mountain View!

(Don’t worry: I promise not to inspect your shopping carts for packaged pasta and boxes of candy. I’ll leave it to my mini-minions to do the dirty work.)

Forky Friday: 3/21/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Austin, Here I Come!

Speaking of book signings, I had a blast meeting folks in Denver, Naperville, and Chicago last week (and hanging out with friends like Juli, Diana, and others) — thanks to all of you who came to say hi!

Forky Friday: 3/21/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

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Forky Friday: 3/15/14

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Forky Friday 3/15/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

I thought it was going to be teeth-chatteringly arctic in Chicago today – a stinging reminder for this California girl that spring has not yet sprung in all parts of the US of A. But happily, it’s not nearly as frigid as I expected. Yay!

Forky Friday 3/15/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

I’m in town for the weekend to attend a conference, eat my way around the city, and do two joint book events with my gal pal, Diana Rodgers. (If you’re interested in coming, go RSVP for our free book events at Anderson’s Bookshop in Naperville and CrossFit 312 right here in Chicago!) 

Forky Friday 3/15/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

But before I do, I suppose I better get caught up with another edition of Forky Friday. Are you ready?

Reading is Good For You

Forky Friday 3/15/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

I know that Paleo books are hitting shelves at a fast and furious pace. Yes, our cookbook, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans, is my personal favorite (shameless plug alert!), but there are two brand-spankin’ new books you really must check out:

Joshua Weissman, the talented young man behind the gorgeous Slim Palate blog, has just released his first cookbook, The Slim Palate Paleo Cookbook. I’ve hung out with Josh a few times, and each time, I’m awestruck that he’s already figured out – at the tender age of 18! – what most folks never get: that the key to good health is getting into the kitchen and cooking nourishing food from scratch. Heck, it took almost 40 years on this planet for this old lady (I’m pointing at myself) to come to that realization.

When I was a senior in high school, I was still buying lunch from the school vending machines (Doritos and Hawaiian Punch, thankyouverymuch) and mainlining non-fat frozen yogurt. Josh is a wonderful role model for eaters of all ages – and he has amazing skills behind the stove and camera to boot. 

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Forky Friday: 1/24/14

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Forky Friday: 1/24/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Ready or not, here I come—with my favorite links of the week!

In The Kitchen

When I first started eating according to a Paleo template, the biggest challenge wasn’t removing ”heart-healthy” whole grains or beans from my diet—it was the prospect of having to cook ALL THE TIME. I didn’t want to spend my entire life in front of the stove—especially when I could be catching up with The Real Housewives on TV.

Forky Friday: 1/24/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

But now, having logged thousands of hours in the kitchen, I no longer feel like pulling out my hair in clumps when faced with dinner prep. Of course, it also helps that I’ve continued to learn and employ time- (and sanity-) saving tips and tricks that streamline the cooking process.

Case in point: I love this post in The Kitchn about 18 Daily Habits that Make Life in the Kitchen Better.

Forky Friday: 1/24/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

And thanks to this HuffPo article, I’ve eliminated a number of bad kitchen habits, too.

My favorite new shortcut in the kitchen? I’ve been keeping a large stainless steel bowl filled with warm, soapy water in the sink so I can chuck dirty utensils and dishes into it as I cook. Presto! Washing dishes just got a lot easier!

Forky Friday: 1/24/14 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

I just need to keep reminding myself not to toss any knives into the suds. (Because “Surprise! You just lost a finger!” ain’t my idea of a good time.)

Still Whole30in’ On?

For all of you who soldiered through the KILL ALL THE THINGS phase of the Whole30 (like my super-awesome sister Fiona!), welcome to the home stretch!

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Forky Friday: 12/27/13

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Forky Friday: 12/27/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Howdy, gang!

It’s been a while since my last Forky Friday, and in that time, our first cookbook, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans, was published! I can’t tell you how gratifying it is to see our labor of love out there in the real world, and to see the reviews that have been posted around the web. We love the comments and photos that so many of you have posted on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Keep ’em coming — we can’t wait to see what you’re cooking up!

Forky Friday: 12/27/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

(In the meantime, if you have our book and like it, will you consider posting a review on Amazon or Barnes & Noble? It would be a huge help, and I’d be incredibly grateful!)

In the meantime, let’s get back to our regularly scheduled links from around the web…

Back on Track

As much as I’d like to report that I’m still eating my way through northern Thailand, I’m not. We got home from Asia earlier this week—just in time for me to don my gay apparel (a.k.a. hospital scrubs) and start another week of graveyard shifts on Christmas night. I missed the usual holiday feasting…but it was probably for the best. I’d already enjoyed my fair share of incredible meals (and dietary off-roading) in Chiang Mai, and was glad for the chance to avoid further gastronomic temptations.

Forky Friday: 12/27/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

If, like me, you took a nutritional detour over the holiday season, don’t freak out. An occasional indulgence won’t derail you from your journey down the Paleo superhighway.

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Forky Friday: 12/6/13

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Forky Friday 11/15/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Eek! I still haven’t packed for our trip to Asia, so this post will be short and sweet. It’s still worth a read because the links are cool and I’ve got a sweet discount code at the end of this post. After all, you guys really are the best ever, and deserve some end-of-week savings, right?

Mel’s A Big, Bright, Shiny Star

I love this new video by my pal Melissa Joulwan on how to peel a grapefruit the correct way. It’s so soothing and illuminating. I want her to make more videos, don’t you?

Go buy her new cookbook, Well Fed 2, and make Thai Pink Grapefruit Salad pronto. And did you see that she’ll be doing a joint signing with me and Diana Rodgers on January 2nd? It’s almost to capacity, so go RSVP now

Yay for Russ!

I’ll admit it: I’m a celebrity gossip junkie, and am an avid reader of People Magazine. But this week, I have even more reason to be impatient for the mailman to deliver this newest issue ’cause my friend Russ Crandall's featured in it!

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Now I won’t have to hide the Sexiest Man Alive issue under the couch anymore when company comes over!

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Forky Friday: 2013 Holiday Gift Guide + Coupon Codes

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2013 Holiday Gift Guide by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Okay, shopaholics: It’s that time of year again, when we burn off our Thanksgiving calories by trampling over each other in a frenzied rush to save a few bucks. After all, what exemplifies gratitude and elicits more holiday cheer than shoving your thumbs into a guy’s eyes so he’ll let go of the limited edition Lego Chima set you promised to buy your kid for Christmas?

2013 Holiday Gift Guide by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

To be honest, even if I wasn’t working night shifts at the hospital this week, you couldn’t pay me enough to brave the Black Friday crowds. Someone else can tweet about the looting and rioting at Walmart this year. I’m content to trawl the Internets in search of holiday gifts.

In fact, I’ve already been scouting out some of the awesomest presents available online:

For Cookbook Lovers:

As the right-hand navigation bar on my blog clearly shows, there’s no shortage of incredible Paleo books out there. You really can’t go wrong with any of the tomes listed on the right side of my website.

For example, this is the perfect time to grab copies of Melissa Joulwan’s Well Fed 2 and Diana Rodgers’ Paleo Lunches and Breakfasts on the Go. At my very first book signing (at CrossFit Palo Alto on the evening of Thursday, January 2), both Mel and Diana will be joining me—and though we’ll all be selling our books at the event, it can’t hurt to stock up, right? (Especially if you can’t make it to the signing.) Keep your eyes peeled—details and an RSVP link will be posted on Sunday Monday (I’m behind…)!

2013 Holiday Gift Guide by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

But come on: What kind of terrible self-promoter would I be if I didn’t hawk my own cookbook? Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans hits shelves on December 17—just  two-and-a-half weeks away! Preorder the book at AmazonBarnes & Noble, IndieBound, and wherever books are sold. There’s a Kindle version, a Google Play version, and even a super-interactive enhanced Apple Books edition of our cookbook that looks incredible on an iPad or iPhone. (Nook and Kobo versions are coming, too.)

2013 Holiday Gift Guide by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

And get this: Between now and December 1, you can take an extra 30% off any book offered by Amazon.com by entering the code BOOKDEAL at checkout. Not to be outdone, Barnes & Noble is also offering 30% off through December 2 with the coupon code BFRIDAY30.

If my math is correct, that means you can get Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans for just $15.50—over 55% off the $35.00 cover price. Grab the deal while you can!

2013 Holiday Gift Guide by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

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Forky Friday: 11/8/13

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Forky Friday 11/8/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

HOLY. MOLY.

Our cookbook—our baby!—hits shelves in just thirty-something days, which means that (in addition to work, kids, cooking, and blogging) I’m up to my eyeballs in frantic preparations, from planning a super-duper book release party in San Francisco (mark your calendars for Saturday, January 4!) to lining up events and swag for my book tour. (Stay tuned for details—I think you’re going to go bonkers for the fun surprises we have in store!)

Forky Friday 11/8/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

But that doesn’t mean I can’t find the time to pull together my favorite links from around the Weird Wild Web! (Besides, it’s a great excuse for procrastinating.)

Forky Friday 11/8/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Thai Me Up, Thai Me Down

Believe it or not, we won’t even be in the country on our book release date—we’ll be in Thailand. In fact, our little family will be hanging out in Asia for most of December, eating our way through Hong Kong and Chiang Mai on official Nom Nom Paleo business.

Okay, maybe we’ll just be sampling local delicacies for 90% of the trip. But that’s important business to me!

Forky Friday 11/8/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

My parents are insisting that I try the local seafood while I’m in Hong Kong—but all I can think about is the prospect of eating swamp eels and penis fish. I’m already bracing myself; the last time I was in China, I was taken to a restaurant and served turtle soup and bear paw stew.

This trip, we’ll be spending most of our time in northern Thailand—Chiang Mai, to be precise. And I’m already looking forward to eating authentic Thai cuisine, which is nothing like the sickly-sweet, greasy Americanized fare found in the States. In fact, Serious Eats just debunked a bunch of Thai food myths with Chef Andy Ricker of Portland’s Pok Pok.

Forky Friday 11/8/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

One important lesson I learned from this article: “Chopsticks are only used in Thailand when you’re going to a Chinese restaurant or a noodle restaurant.” So next time you hit your favorite Thai joint, pick up a fork and spoon instead.

A Solution to the Problem of Contaminated Spices

Remember when I freaked you out last week about the prospect of consuming dried herbs and spices contaminated with bug parts and salmonella? Don’t fret! There’s a simple solution: Use fresh herbs!

Forky Friday 11/8/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

According to this oldie-but-goodie from The Kitchn, you can easily substitute fresh herbs for the dried variety:

[F]resh herbs tend to have a more delicate flavor than dried, so I tend to use more of it. My general rule of thumb is to use 1½ times the amount of fresh as I would dry. Meaning that if the recipe calls for 1 teaspoon of dried thyme, I’d start with 1½ teaspoons of fresh thyme. Remember, you can always add more, but you can’t take it away once it’s in there!

Of course, if you want to just make an incredible meal featuring the bright flavors of fresh herbs, my sister’s Green Chicken is a can’t-miss dish.

Forky Friday 11/8/13 by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

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