This week we have a guest blog from the founder of website and blog Paleo Diet and Fitness and the author of “Introduction to Paleo” and “Paleo: 12 Weeks to Change Your Life.” Rebecca Field has been following a Paleo diet since 2009 and says ‘it has simply changed my life. I am fitter, healthier, leaner and most importantly happier than I have ever been’.
How I got started
I initially started Paleo after embarking upon a fitness regime to try and break the cycle of dieting followed by weight gain. I had gone through this routine for the majority of my adult life and I got to the point where I knew it just had to stop; not just because it was thoroughly depressing but I knew I had to change for the sake of my health.
I found the Paleo lifestyle easy to adapt to from the start. By eliminating grains, sugar and dairy from my diet I started to feel the benefits within a matter of days. I was no longer bloated and my cravings for sugar filled snacks just seemed to disappear overnight and I never thought that would be possible!
After just a few weeks I could see that my body was changing shape, I was full of energy, my skin was glowing and I felt confident. I was enjoying everything I was eating and never felt deprived; it was certainly not like any of the other “diets” I had been on. I was learning about how to nourish my body back to health, meal by meal and I could feel the benefits of this on a daily basis. I found it fascinating how my diet was able to improve everything from eczema (which cleared up completely) all the way through to my everyday mood.
Why I use Coconut Oil
It is no secret that coconut oil is often the oil of choice for those following a Paleo diet. The emphasis for Paleo cooking is based upon using good sources of saturated fats; usually animal fats such as lard or dripping. Coconut oil is however one of the only non-animal based saturated fats and can be used for all aspects of cooking. Many prefer the sweet subtle taste of coconut oil along with the myriad health benefits it provides.
It is incredibly versatile and I use it in both savoury and sweet Paleo recipes. I use it for the majority of my pan frying and find that the flavour works well with so many ingredients. I particularly love using it when cooking my eggs for breakfast and for cooking up my favourite curry dishes. It also works well melted over vegetables or with a baked sweet potato. You can even stir some coconut oil into your coffee instead of milk. Whichever way you use coconut oil it is simply delicious!
When it comes to sweet recipes coconut oil really helps to bring a recipe to life. From adding to everyday items such as energy balls and snack bars to creating something a bit more special such as chocolate frosting it adds a new dimension to creating tasty Paleo treats. I don’t know what I would do without it.
About Paleo Diet and Fitness
Since starting my Paleo lifestyle I have been continually shocked at how few people in the UK are aware of the Paleo diet. This is not surprising given the majority of online resources are US based. Paleo Diet and Fitness was therefore created to provide a UK based resource for all things Paleo.
Through our blogs, recipes, articles and books we provide advice, support and inspiration to those following a Paleo lifestyle. With advice on how to get started through to the best Paleo food swaps we have all the information you need on a wide range of topics; not to mention tasty and original recipes on our blog every week.
You can find us at:
Paleo Chocolate Tarts
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Chilling Time: 12 hours
Total Time: 12 hours and 15 minutes
For the crust:
50g cashews, unsalted
2 tbsp linseed
1 tbsp coconut oil
6 medjool dates, pitted and chopped
For the filling:
5 tbsp coconut oil
3 tbsp cocoa powder, unsweetened
4 tbsp coconut milk (thick cream part)
3 tbsp raw honey
Pinch of sea salt
- Place the walnuts, cashews, dates and linseed into a food processor and blend together. When a fine crumb texture is reached, add the coconut oil and blend again.
- Place small sections of mixture into the pastry cases and press firmly to form a crumb lining. Continue to add more mixture until the pastry case is coated.
- Place into the fridge to set for at least 1 hour. Bring the pastry cases out of the fridge and set on one side.
- Heat the coconut milk and coconut oil in a pan over a low heat. Keep stirring the ingredients as they heat so that they combine together.
- Once melted stir in the honey and a pinch of sea salt until combined.
- Take the pan off the heat and add 1 tbsp of cocoa powder and whisk into the mixture. Once combined add another tbsp of cocoa powder and repeat.
- Pour the filling into the pastry cases and place into the fridge to set overnight.
- Bring the tarts out of the fridge and leave to stand for 10 minutes before serving.
- Gently remove the pastry cases, serve and enjoy!
More paleo recipes to come next week.