Archive for the ‘Dinner’ Category

Hungarian Lecso

Hungarian Lecso

I am not Hungarian, so this recipe may not be entirely authentic, but I have experimented with lecso (pronounced “LECH-oh”) enough to know what works well and what doesn’t. This is a favorite dinner recipe at our house, and I hope you enjoy it too.

Ingredients

1 Sweet onion, thinly sliced
2 Red, orange, or yellow bell peppers, sliced
2 Tbsp bacon fat or fat of choice
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
1 Tbsp sweet Hungarian paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1 lb kielbasa or smoked sausage

A couple of notes before beginning. First, don’t use green bell peppers, despite what more traditional recipes might say. Red bell peppers are delicious in this recipe, while green bell peppers ruin it.

Second, I prefer sweet Hungarian paprika over smoked paprika. If smoked paprika is all you can get, it will do, but sweet Hungarian paprika is better for this recipe.

Begin by slicing the peppers and onions.

Sliced onions and peppers

Next, cook the onions and peppers over medium heat in a heavy-bottomed pot with the bacon fat, beef tallow, or your fat of choice. Olive oil or coconut oil also work nicely. I recommend cooking the  onions and peppers until the onions begin to caramelize. This can take 20-30 minutes, stirring every few minutes.

Sauteed peppers and onions

Once the onions have begun to caramelize and the peppers are nice and soft, add the canned, diced tomatoes, juice and all, along with the paprika and salt. Stir everything together and let it simmer for another 10-15 minutes.

Before serving, add the sliced sausage to the pot and let it simmer for another 10 minutes or so until the meat is thoroughly heated. It may not look like much in this picture, but it is absolutely delicious.

Hungarian Lecso

I recommend serving it over riced cauliflower. I served this last night to guests with riced cauliflower and a side of Brussels sprouts slaw from the Paleo Comfort Foods cookbook, and it was an enormous hit.

Savory Paleo Chili

Yesterday my wife and I harvested the ripe tomatoes from our garden and wound up with so many that we needed to can them, make tomato sauce for freezing, or something like that. For starters, I decided to make a big pot of chili in the slow-cooker, though it looks like I’ll still have plenty of tomatoes for marinara.

I’ve always loved chili, but you can’t find paleo-friendly chili in a can. You’ve got to make it yourself. In fact, if you want your chili to be truly paleo, you need to make your own chili seasoning because almost all commercial chili seasonings contain wheat flour as their primary ingredient.

Here’s a bean-free, flourless, gluten-free chili I made to use up all those extra tomatoes. This recipe requires a large slow cooker. If you’ve got a smaller slow cooker, you may want to cut the recipe in half.

Ingredients

1 large bowl full of tomatoes (I used at least a dozen tomatoes for this batch)
3 lbs extra lean ground beef (preferably grass-fed)
1 large onion, chopped
1 large bell pepper, chopped
3 stalks of celery, chopped
8 oz mushrooms, sliced
2 cups chopped fresh parsley
4 tbsp coconut oil

Chili Seasoning

1 tbsp chili powder
1 1/2 tsp cumin
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp black pepper

First, you’ll want to blanch the tomatoes to remove the peels. This is preferable to having lots of little bits of tomato skin in your chili. If you’ve never blanched a tomato, watch this video to see how it’s done.

Once the tomatoes are blanched, they should look something like this.

Next, chop the tomatoes and put them in the slow cooker. If you don’t want a watery chili, you should cut the tomatoes into halves or quarters to let some of the juices run out before chopping them for the chili.

20110925-150955.jpg

Now brown the ground beef. Once cooked, drain the beef and add it to the slow cooker with the tomatoes.

20110925-151009.jpg

Next, saute the onions, bell pepper and celery in a large skillet with 2 tbsp coconut oil until tender, and then add them to the slow cooker with the meat and tomatoes. This large bell pepper came from our local farmer’s market. Most bell peppers are smaller than this, so you may need to use a couple of pepper; perhaps a green one and a red one.

20110925-151023.jpg

20110925-151031.jpg

Finally, mix all of the spices together in a bowl and add them to the slow cooker.

20110925-151040.jpg

Now saute the sliced mushrooms in the remaining 2 tbsp of coconut oil until tender. Add the mushrooms and chopped parsley to the slow cooker and stir everything together. It should look something like this.

20110925-151047.jpg

Cover and cook on high for one hour. After one hour, turn the slow cooker down to low and cook for two more hours.

Serve with paleo cornbread, cinnamon rolls, and maple bars. Kidding.