Nom Nom Paleo

Take Two: A Big Update to My iPad Cookbook App!

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Right before Christmas, I proudly announced the release of an update to the Nom Nom Paleo iPad® cookbook app. Unfortunately, there was an unforeseen glitch: The wrong version of the app had been inadvertently submitted to Apple for approval. And the company’s App Store review team was shutting down for the holidays. Argh.

So for the past two weeks, we (and you) have been stuck with an old version of the app, without all the new goodies we promised. Double argh. We can’t say sorry enough times to make this right, but thanks for bearing with us anyway.

Thankfully, with the App Store team back in action, we got word late yesterday that our update — the real one! — has been approved by the good folks at Apple. And now, version 1.5 of the Nom Nom Paleo app is finally live!

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So what does this mean for those of you who own an iPad or iPad Mini? Keep reading for the full scoop!

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Rogan Josh (Lamb Stew) - The Easy Version

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Folks, I’ve discovered another game changer.

After reading John “Doc” Willoughby’s article “Deep Flavor, No Browning Required” in the NYT, I’ve decided to forgo pre-searing meat when I cook stews. According to the article, the way to “cold start” a stew is to skip the normal searing of meat in hot oil and replace it with a gentle warming of the protein in some fat, aromatics, and spices. No sputtering oil or grease burns AND you still get a delicious, flavorful dish? Awesome.

The other day, I decided to test out this method with my Rogan Josh recipe. How’d it turn out? The final dish was yummy and flavorful and nobody missed the browned bits (or the greasy mess).

Here’s what I gathered to feed 6 adults:

  • 2.5 pounds of boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 1.5 inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons ghee (or coconut oil)
  • 2 onions, coarsely chopped
  • 2 large carrots, coarsely chopped
  • 2 heaping tablespoons of Rogan Josh seasoning
  • ½ cup full fat Greek yogurt (or coconut milk)
  • 2/3 cup water Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Here’s how I made it:

I preheated the oven to 300 F, prepped the lamb…

…chopped the veggies…

…and melted the ghee in a large Dutch oven over medium low heat.

Once the fat melted, I dumped in the lamb, onions, carrots, spices, salt, and pepper.

I stirred the mixture constantly for 5-8 minutes until the spices were fragrant.

Next, I added the water and yogurt and increased the heat to high to bring the contents to a simmer.

I put on the lid and placed the stew in the oven for around two hours or until the lamb was very tender. I removed the stew from the oven and adjusted the seasoning with salt and pepper.

I transferred the finished dish to a storage container with the intent of reheating it in a few days.

Stews always taste better when they’ve been allowed to mellow out in the fridge for a day and this was no exception. My parents kept on remarking that the lamb was super tender and delicious. I think they’re just surprised that my food is edible these days. Practice makes perfect…

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken And Gravy

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Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

In the past, I’ve always had crappy results when I’ve tried to cook a whole chicken in the slow cooker. The bird would always be overcooked, stringy, mushy, and dry. Super icky. Last night, I cooked a whole chicken in my slow cooker and it was AMAZING! I‘ll never prepare a whole chicken any other way again. Yes, that was a hyperbolic statement but I’m sticking with it.

The method I followed was a mash-up between Sarah Fragoso’s Spice Rub Crock Pot Chicken and the chicken in a pot recipe from Slow Cooker Revolution.  I heart both, so how could I fail? 

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 pound organic kosher chicken (I prefer the taste of the salt-washed bird)
  • 2 tablespoons of ghee
  • 2 onions, chopped medium (or 2 cups of your favorite alliums)
  • 6 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 1 teaspoon tomato paste (you can use up to a tablespoon to add more umami)
  • ¼ cup chicken stock
  • ¼ cup white wine (replace with 1/4 cup extra chicken stock if on Whole30)
  • Sunny Paris seasoning (or your favorite seasoning)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper

Here’s what you do:

Gather and chop up your veggies…

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…and melt the ghee in a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. Sauté the onions and garlic (I threw in some scallions, too)…

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…and add the tomato paste.

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

The aromatics should be softened and lightly browned after 8-10 minutes. Season the vegetables with salt and pepper to taste.

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Then, deglaze the pan with the wine and/or chicken stock, and transfer everything to your slow cooker. Dry off the bird and season it well — inside and out — with salt, pepper, and your favorite poultry seasoning. (I like Sunny Paris seasoning from Penzeys Spices.)

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

Place the chicken breast side down in the slow cooker, put on the cover, and set it to cook on low for 4-6 hours.

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

This bird was close to 4 pounds, so I aimed for about 4.5 hours of simmering.

When the chicken’s finished cooking…

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…take it out of the slow cooker and let it rest for 20 minutes.

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

De-fat the braising sauce…

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…check for seasoning, and blend it with an immersion blender

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

… to make a delicious gravy.

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

This gravy is kickass!

Rip up the chicken up with your hands like a true cavegirl or caveguy…

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

…and serve it with the gravy.

Slow Cooker Roast Chicken and Gravy by Michelle Tam http://nomnompaleo.com

My favorite thing about this recipe is the breast stays moist! Love it! Don’t ever cook chicken longer than 6 hours on low!

And DON’T FORGET TO SAVE THE GRAVY! It’s pretty much incredible on everything.


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).

Cheater Crispy Sous Vide Duck Confit Legs

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Hey R, here’s a different way to heat up those Costco-purchased Grimaud Farms duck confit seasoned legs that’s super easy and the results are astounding.

I used to heat them up in the oven per the instructions of the package (stick in 400 F oven with skin side up for 15 minutes) but I was always disappointed with the flabby skin and the dried out texture of the meat. Since these babies come vacuum-sealed and are probably prepared sous vide originally, I’ve always wanted to reheat them in the water oven and then sear the legs off on the stove to crisp up the skin.

I opted to cook them this way tonight and they turned out PERFECTLY! My one minor gripe is the skin’s never intact on the legs so it’s a crapshoot how much crispy skin you get. That being said, I will NEVER make my own duck confit — I’ll just pretend I did.

Here’s what I did to feed 2.5 people:

I filled and heated the SousVide Supreme to 140 F and grabbed a package of Grimaud Farms duck confit seasoned legs from the fridge. 

Although the legs come vacuum-sealed already, I opted to reseal them in a Foodsaver bag since I don’t know if the original plastic container can be heated. 

I dunked the legs in the water oven for about 45 minutes and took the legs out…

…and patted them dry. 

I melted 2 tablespoons of duck fat in a cast iron skillet over medium high heat and seared the legs skin side-down for about 2 minutes…

…flipped them over, and browned the other side for about a minute. There’s lots of splatter so cover up with an apron.

Voila! 

French bistro quality, super-crisp skinned and tender duck legs at home!

Chez Panisse Braised Red Cabbage

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Here’s another simple yet delicious recipe culled from Alice WatersChez Panisse Vegetables. The woman is a genius.

The finished dish is an awesome bowl of purple comfort food – tender, sweet, tart, and savory. It goes well with any protein so it’s a wonderful cabbage side dish to have in your repertoire.

Here’s what I gathered to feed 4-6 adults:

  • 1 red cabbage (green works great as well), outer wilted leaves and core removed, and sliced very thin
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons of duck fat (bacon grease would be delicious as well)
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Kosher salt and pepper
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 apple, peeled and grated

Here’s how I made it:

The first thing I did was gather and chop up the ingredients.

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I scooped out the duck fat…

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…and melted it over medium heat in a large cast iron skillet.

Once the duck fat was melted, I sautéed the onions for about 5 minutes.

Next, I added the cabbage, vinegar, bay leaf, salt, pepper, and water.

I brought it up to a boil, put on a lid, lowered the heat, and simmered the cabbage for 20 minutes.

I peeled and grated a Fuji apple and added it to the cabbage mixture.

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I mixed it in, put on the lid, and let it cook for 5 more minutes. I tasted the cabbage and adjusted for seasoning.

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I love the combination of cabbage, apples, and sherry vinegar!