Book Review: Mediterranean Paleo Cooking by Caitlin Weeks, Grass Fed Girl

Grain/Gluten, Legume, Dairy and Soy Free Mediterranean Recipes

Are you bored with your diet? Looking for a change in your typical flavors you cook with? Something with savory pungent spices that’s not your everyday flare, but still in line with your food sensitivities and dietary needs?

I’m super excited to be sharing with you an incredible cookbook that is quickly turning out to be one of my favorites. The author, Caitlin Weeks, also known as  Grass Fed Girl, has been my friend and neighbor just a few blocks down from me for the last couple years since moving to San Francisco. Since we were both nutritionists we quickly became friends, and with that came all of her wonderful treats, meals, and amazing food she would drop off at my doorstep when she was in recipe development mode. Can’t say I ever complained.

Caitlin’s husband, Nabil Boumrar, grew up in Algeria on the Mediterranean sea. Nabil is a talented chef here in San Francisco. Caitlin and Nabil naturally cooked many wonderful and delicious mediterranean dishes with the most pungent flavors and nourishing spices (many of which I was lucky enough to try). I was always so inspired after a dinner at their house- and super satisfied. It was not surprising when Caitlin told me she was beginning to work on a paleo cookbook inspired my Nabil’s traditional family recipes. Fast forward a year later, Mediterranean Paleo Cooking was born.

I recently received a copy of the cookbook to review, and have been incredibly impressed. Not that I wasn’t expecting it to be great, but the presentation is stunning!  The book itself is HEAVY, in the best way possible. Filled with beautifully photographed food makes every page visually pleasing and sparks a desire  to get into the kitchen to recreate these amazing dishes.

What I love about Mediterranean Paleo Cooking

My Favorite part of the book is that every recipe has the option to be nut free, egg free, SCD/ GAPS compliant and lower carb friendly. There’s also options to make every recipe AIP (autoimmune paleo) friendly, as well as a low FODMAP version. This is where the touch of author Diane SanFilippo shines through (as well as her signature vibrant feel throughout the entire book). But what really makes this cookbook unique which I though was truly special, are the Nutritionist’s and Chef’s Tips in every recipe; teaching people not only how to make the most out of the recipe flavor wise, but also educating the consumer in the process about the health benefits of the ingredients. Brilliant! In addition the book contains a guide on how to use Mediterranean spices, and a 30 -day meal plan for followers of an Autoimmune Protocol and general Paleo diet (excluding grains, legumes, dairy and soy).

Overall I think the team on this book created a beautifully and well thought out unique approach to traditional mediterranean inspired recipes, while then turning them into healthier and food sensitivity friendly versions. You may already have many paleo cookbooks, but the recipes in Mediterranean Paleo Cooking  are very different than anything you have tried. The dishes and flavors are truly unique and inspired by a real Mediterranean raised chef.

Improve Your Health and Skin

Whatever your health goals, including getting to the root issue of your skin concerns, this book can provide you with the support and inspiration to keep your diet lively and highly satisfying with new flavors from an authentic Mediterranean cusine experience.  Order your copy of Mediterranean Paleo Cooking here.

Recipe I’m Loving Straight From Mediterranean Paleo Cooking

This is the perfect recipe for fall in the midst of all the pumpkin craze. This one really stuck out to me as a warm, nourishing, light meal, snack or even great breakfast option. Pumpkin is packed with skin supportive nutrients and cilantro is a great natural liver support, so eat up!

Cilantro Pumpkin Soup

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, ghee, or coconut oil

1 medium white onion, diced

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon paprika

fine sea salt and  ground black pepper

2 cups full-fat, canned coconut milk

3 cups homemade cooked pumpkin or canned pumpkin (I like this one because you can avoid the BPA in the can version) – about two 15-ounce cans or packaged pumpkin puree

4 cups Chicken Broth

1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro, divided

1/4 cup chopped pine nuts, for garnish

Directions

  1. Melt the fat in a stockpot over medium heat.. Add the onion and sauté for 2 minutes, until translucent. Add the nutmeg, paprika, and a pinch of salt and pepper and cook for 1 more minute.
  2. Add the coconut milk, pumpkin, and broth to the pot and stir to combine. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, uncovered. Keep simmering for about 10 minutes, stirring often.
  3. Remove the soup from the heat. Use an immersion blender to puree, or puree in a blender or food processor in batches. Adjust the seasonings to taste.
  4. Add half of the cilantro and stir. Divide the soup between bowls and garnish with the remaining cilantro and the pine nuts before serving.

Nut Free: Use chopped sunflower seeds in place of the pine nuts.

Egg Free: Yes

Low FODMAP: Use 1/4 cup chopped scallions in place of the onion and reduce cooking time to 1 minute.

AIP- friendly: Omit the nutmeg, paprika, and pine nuts. Substitue 1 teaspoon ground turmeric and 1 teaspoon ground ginger.

SCD/ GAPS: Yes

Lower Carb: Yes

Nutritionist’s Note: Pumpkin is high in soluble fiber, which supports beneficial bacteria in the gut, which in turn supports healthy digestion. It’s also loaded with beta carotene and vitamin C.

Get your own copy of Mediterranean Paleo Cooking and see all 150 fresh and unique recipes for a true Mediterranean lifestyle. 

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