I’ve been reading a lot about how it’s bad to use extra virgin olive oil when you’re cooking with high heat (e.g. roasting, grilling, etc.). What a buzz kill. Thankfully, I have good, healthful lard in the fridge!
Tonight, I decided to roast some carrots and delicata squash coated in lard. Doesn’t that just sound totally decadent and unhealthy? A year ago, I would never touch lard with a ten-foot pole, but now I use it all the time. From now on, I’m going to try to use coconut oil, ghee, or lard for all my high-heat cooking.
Cooking with lard isn’t as convenient as pouring olive oil out of a bottle – you gotta melt the stuff, but then it easily seizes up again when it touches your cold veggies or meat.
So here’s what I did: I scooped up a few tablespoons of lard and nuked it in a glass bowl for 20 second intervals until it melted. Make sure you closely monitor it or your microwave will look like someone barfed lard all over it.
Once the lard melts, use a silicone brush to paint the fat onto your veggies. It does solidify on contact (especially if your veggies are right out of the ice box) which is kind of annoying. But don’t overcompensate by slathering more on or you’ll end up with a huge oil slick at the bottom of your pan later.
Aren’t these carrots purty?
I peeled and cut them before coating them with lard and a sprinkling of salt and pepper.
Post-roasting (400 F for 40 minutes):
Here’s the delicata squash before I popped it in my toaster oven (400 F for 20-30 minutes). They almost look waxed!
I have tons of extra virgin olive oil stock-piled in my pantry from my pre-Paleo days. Now that I’ve sworn off cooking at high temperatures with the stuff, I guess I’m gonna be drizzling it on a lot of my dishes after I’ve plated them!
Tonight, I’m dead tired. I’m always beat on the Wednesday I get off my 7-night workweek. While my kids were transfixed in front of the boob tube (Scooby-Doo is a multi-generational crowd pleaser), I threw together a quick grain-free dinner for Fitbomb and myself.
In the fridge, I had some sweet basil and parmesan chicken meatballs, carrots, and half a box of pre-washed organic baby spinach in the fridge. Although the spinach is a great convenience item, if the box has been open for a few days, I gotta pick out a whole bunch of melt-y leaves. Yuck.
I prepped the carrots for roasting and popped them in my good old toaster oven. Then, I chopped up a shallot and threw them in a pan with melted lard. Once they were softened, I dumped in the spinach and stirred the leaves around until they were wilted.
I zoned in front of the boob tube while I waited for the carrots to finish roasting. Then, I replaced the carrots with a tray of meatballs.
I normally nuke the meatballs when I’m at work but they taste MUCH better baked in the oven. I did nuke up some herb gravy which I served on the side.
Here’s everything plated up:
I used to always order out on my “flip night” and invariably what we ate was always super carb-y (e.g. pho, pizza, sushi, etc.). Having easy to fix basics and pre-cooked proteins in the fridge has totally changed how I eat. I don’t think I’ll ever go back.
I almost forgot my dessert! A shot glass of my favorite coconut milk: