Nom Nom Paleo

Paleo Krabby Patties

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[UPDATED March 30, 2012: I originally posted this recipe over a year ago, but I’ve finally gotten around to fixing the pics and fine-tuning the steps. Enjoy!]

Just like Paleo mayonnaise, there are lots of great Paleo-friendly recipes out in the blogosphere for crab cakes. In particular, The Food Lovers’ Primal Palate has a really awesome one as does Mark’s Daily Apple. Why am I adding another one to the mix? Well, variety is the spice of life and I’m on a mission to Paleo-ize a bunch of recipes in my favorite cookbooks.

Today, I decided to see if I could successfully adapt the crab cake recipe in my America’s Test Kitchen’s Family Cookbook. The original recipe uses both breadcrumbs and flour (which are verboten) so I subbed in some coconut flour instead. Also, I didn’t have any fresh herbs or Old Bay seasoning so I just used a dash of  Penzeys Sunny Paris seasoning.  The end results were fantastic. Now I know why Plankton is always trying to steal the recipe for Krabby patties.

Ingredients (Feeds 4):

  • 1 pound canned pasteurized super lump crabmeat
  • 1.5 tablespoons coconut flour, plus more for dusting the cakes (~1/4 cup)
  • 2 scallions, minced
  • 1 tablespoon Sunny Paris seasoning
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup Paleo mayonnaise
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

Whip up a fresh batch of Paleo mayonnaise if you don’t have some already…

…and reserve 1/4 cup.

Place a pound of fresh or drained canned crab meat in a large bowl.

(Handy tip: keep a couple of cans of crab meat in the fridge because they’re a steal at Costco and have a long shelf life. It’s great emergency food when you have no other protein available.)

Add coconut flour, scallions, Sunny Paris seasoning…

…egg…

…mayonnaise, salt, and pepper.

Gently mix with a rubber spatula to combine the ingredients.

Line a platter with parchment paper…

…and divide the crab mixture into eight portions.

Form each one into a flat cake…

…and place them on the parchment-lined dish.

Refrigerate the cakes for 30 minutes to firm up.

Once the cakes are chilled, heat the coconut oil in a large frying pan over medium heat until shimmering…

Fill a shallow dish with coconut flour…

…and dredge each cake lightly with coconut flour.

Make sure you pat off the excess flour or the cakes will be too dry.

Fry the cakes in two batches…

…for about three minutes on each side.

Remove the finished cakes to a wire rack so they don’t get soggy.

Serve the Paleo Krabby Patties on a tangy slaw with some lemon wedges.

Slow Cooker Korean Grass Fed Short Ribs

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Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Inspired by a recipe in Slow Cooker Revolution from the editors at America’s Test Kitchen, I’ve made this Korean-style dish several times—and every time, it’s been easy-peasy and tasty. I simplified and Paleoized the recipe by subbing out the soy sauce with coconut aminos, the rice wine vinegar with coconut vinegar, and leaving out the tapioca. What’s cool about this recipe is that you don’t need to sear off any of the meat or carmelize any aromatics –- it’s pretty much a dump-it-in-and-forget-about-it kind of dish. That being said, when I do have the time I will char the short ribs under the broiler before throwing them in the slow cooker.

You may want to make this dish ahead of time and store it in your fridge because the short ribs release a ton of fat into the gravy, which you can easily remove when the chilled fat hardens.

Here’s what to gather to make enough tasty meat to feed 4-6 hungry adults:

  • 6 pounds of bone-in English-style grass-fed short ribs
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 medium pear or Asian pear, peeled, cored, and chopped coarsely
  • 1/2 cup coconut aminos
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 3 scallions, roughly chopped
  • 1 hunk of ginger, about the size of your thumb, cut into two pieces
  • 2 teaspoons of Red Boat fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon coconut vinegar
  • 1 cup organic chicken broth
  • Small handful of roughly chopped fresh cilantro

Here’s how top make it:

Preheat your broiler with the rack 6 inches from the heating element. Season the ribs liberally with salt and pepper…

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…and lay the ribs, bone-side up on a foil-lined baking sheet.

Whenever I season raw meat, I set aside a small ramekin with salt and ground pepper that I use only for the raw stuff. Cross contamination can lead to some bad crap. Literally.

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Broil the ribs for 5 minutes and then flip them over and broil for another 5 minutes.

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Stack the ribs in a single layer in the slow cooker. I lay them on their side to cram them all in the pot.

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Toss the pear, coconut aminos, garlic, scallions, ginger, fish sauce, and vinegar in a blender and puree until smooth.

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Pour the sauce evenly over the ribs…

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…and add the chicken broth to the pot.

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Cover with the lid, set the slow cooker on low, and let the ribs stew for 9-11 hours.

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

When it’s time to serve the ribs, remove the meat from the slow cooker and place them on a serving platter.

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Let the braising liquid settle for 5 minutes and then ladle off the fat if you wish. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, and pour a cup of sauce over the ribs.

Sprinkle on the chopped cilantro and serve the remaining sauce on the side.

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Super tender and very tasty. The simmer sauce is subtly sweet and the coconut aminos, while not as bold-tasting as soy sauce, lend a good umami flavor to the dish.


Looking for recipes and resources? Head on over to my Recipe Index or my Resources page. You’ll also find exclusive recipes on my iPad® app, and in my cookbook, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel, December 2013).

Slow Cooker Pork Shoulder Roast

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So. Damn. Easy.

The hardest part of this recipe is to remember to defrost and season your roast a couple days in advance. When you’re ready to eat it, just pop the pork and some chopped aromatics in your slow cooker and your dinner cooks while you’re at work (or while you’re sleeping).

Here’s what I assembled to feed 4 hungry adults:

  • 2.5 pound tied boneless pork shoulder roast (I wish I had a bigger one but I got this size in my CSA box)
  • 2-4 tablespoons Chili Con Carne Seasoning (or your favorite dry rub)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 large carrots, cut into 1/2” slices

Here’s what I did:

I dried off the pork roast with some paper towels and seasoned it liberally with salt, pepper, and the spice blend. Don’t be afraid to be aggressive with the seasoning.

I placed the roast in a gallon sized Ziploc bag, squeezed out all air, and stuck it in the fridge. The roast should marinate for at least 4 hours and up to 2 days.

A couple days later, I threw some chopped carrots and onions into my slow cooker and tossed them with salt and pepper.

I placed the roast (and collected juices) on top of the vegetables, covered it with a lid, and cooked the pork on low for 8-10 hours.

When the roast was finished cooking, I preheated my broiler. I placed the roast on a greased wire rack on a lined baking sheet and put it under the broiler (~ 6 inches from the heating element) and browned it for about 2 minutes on each side.

I cut the binding on the roast plated the carrots, onions, and gravy. I put the roast on top of the veggies and used two forks to shred the meat.

Yummy. My only regret is I didn’t have a larger roast because I barely had any leftovers!

Crispy Braised Duck Legs

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Want a great, make-ahead, easy-peasy duck leg recipe where the meat is meltingly tender yet the skin is crispy? Make this recipe and thank me later.

For this dish, I modified Molly Steven’s recipe for Duck Ragu with Pasta in her fantastic cookbook, All About Braising. In her version, she braises the duck in a tomato-wine sauce, shreds the meat, and tosses the meaty sauce with pasta. In my version, I braise the duck, store the dish in the fridge for a couple days, and then roast the whole legs in the oven so the skin crisps up on top. Super easy to prepare ahead AND delicious.

Here’s what I assembled to serve 4:

  • 6 duck legs
  • 1 14.5 ounce can of organic diced tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped into 1/2” dice
  • 2 carrots, sliced in 1/2” rounds
  • 1 celery stalk ,cut into 1/2” pieces
  • 4 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 large sprigs of thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2/3 cup dry vermouth or white wine
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper

Here’s how I made the dish:

I assembled the ingredients…

…took out the duck legs from the fridge…

…and used my kitchen shears to trim the duck of as much fat as possible without cutting into the skin or the meat. I also cut off any loose flaps of skin but made sure the top of the leg was all covered with skin. Next, I seasoned the duck with salt and pepper on both sides.

I preheated the oven to 325 F.

Then, I browned the legs in a single layer in a large dutch oven over medium-high heat. As soon as the pot was hot, I placed the legs skin side down on the ungreased surface and seared for 7 minutes. I flipped them over and fried for 3-4 more minutes or until nicely browned on both sides.  I transferred the legs to another dish and repeated the process until all the legs were finished.

I poured out the drippings into a storage container that I stored in the fridge for other uses. Mmmm… duck fat!

I added 1 tablespoon of avocado oil to the pan and tossed in the onions, carrots, celery, garlic, and thyme sprigs with some salt and pepper. I sauted the vegetables for 7-8 minutes or until they were softened. I turned down the heat to medium so the veggies wouldn’t burn.

I added white wine/vermouth and simmered the sauce for 6 minutes or until the liquid was reduced by half. Then I added the chicken broth and simmered that until it was reduced by half. My last step was to add the can of tomatoes (including the juices) and simmered everything for 2-3 minutes to meld the flavors.

Once the sauce was done, I placed the duck legs on top, skin-side up and tucked in the bay leaves.

I added a piece of parchment paper and pressed it down until it almost touched the duck. I put on the cover and popped the pot in the oven for two hours.

When the legs were finished braising, I transferred the dish to a storage/baking dish and put it in the fridge. I made sure the sauce was on the bottom and the duck legs were on top, skin-side up. You can store the braised duck in the fridge for a couple days.

When I was ready to serve the duck, I preheated my oven to 400 F on convection roast and I stuck the dish on the middle rack and let it bake for 25 minutes.

The skin gets nice and crispy and the meat is really tender and delicious. Yummy!