Baking at the Cave, Guest Post by Skhye Moncrief

bakingatcave2

I have another guest post treat for you today! Skhye Moncrief is another writer I know online and she turned to Paleo to help her daughter’s ailments. She also shares an educational background in Anthropology with me. Today, she’s going to share with you lots of yummy resources to help save you time researching it yourself!

Take it away Skhye

Oh, I love it here at Angela’s blog with all the cave art! I truly am a huge fan of life back in the cave. But I come by that honestly with an interest in human prehistory and evolution that lead me to study anthropology. But I’m not here to ramble on about things that amaze me…I’m here to share some things that might help you balance writing with a Paleo lifestyle.

   writepluspaleocalm

When Angela asked me to discuss my Paleo journey, I immediately thought I’m not really a Paleo diet fanatic. Seriously, I always cooked my meats without sauces—well, I do love BBQ sauce. I always ate raw or steamed vegetables. I prefer my cooked veggies plain. I’ve never been a big fruit eater. I never liked bread unless it’s fresh from a bakery like Paneras. I came to Paleo cooking through my daughter who had pains after she ate every meal over the last year or so–wheat allergy! She missed a growth spurt this past year that had the pediatric endocrinologist agreeing with me that there was a problem, and then came a diagnosis. That said, Paleo foods have almost cured my daughter (I don’t know what the endocrinologist will declare.)! She’s still in that 3-6 month healing period and experiences some rumbling (what I have determined is gas/indigestion) but after eliminating dairy until the cilia heal in her intestine, we have really reduced her discomfort that she refers to as pain.

Juggling my daughter’s health and daily schedule with writing fiction was impossible. I had to stop everything and reinvent the cooking wheel because I am a little OCD about my child. I think that’s a good thing. However, Paleo cooking can be extremely expensive. (What is Skhye talking about? Meat and produce aren’t that expensive!) Well, for me Paleo cooking is baking. I already mentioned I cooked meat and vegetables with Paleo flair. My dilemma revolved around all the things an 8 year old would miss when making the big dietary shift. Said shift pushed me to go foraging for Paleo recipes. I needed go-to cookies, breads, crackers, noodles, cereal, etc. Now, those gluten-free items are not cheap at the store. The process of hunting for said basics took research as well. And I do admit I go a little nuts with research…

sagan

Research I’m referring to involved understanding what could be used for flours, sweeteners, and just about anything else you use with recipes because you all know that baking is about precise measurements! At the same time, I also started buying gluten-free mixes. Now, I don’t know what everyone else thinks, but a little extra protein in a mix to replace wheat won’t fix everything…I hate to say there is no magic trick to cure Paleo-diet problems with gluten-free mixes because the wheat substitute is usually the next cheapest alternative to wheat flour that works best with a specific recipe. Remember, we’re talking about chemistry as well as capitalism and profit. Those alternative flours are usually rice and bean—Paleo no-nos. So, what did I do? I gave almost all of the gluten-free mixes away. Why? Rice flour is no better than wheat to me. And I don’t like the bitter taste of bean flour in my baked desserts. So, it just seemed smarter to make everything from scratch. You will have to choose to read the labels as a well-versed Paleo-ian or go to bin stores and buy ingredients in bulk. Those bin stores are really cool too! So, baking from scratch requires some time and experimentation with recipes because you will not like everything everyone else likes…And you learn enough by trying new recipes, you can create your own masterpieces!

boundaries

Textures are the biggest turnoff for me. Now, I’m not suggesting everyone fall off the writing quest and start researching how to bake Paleo foods. You should be writing. My thought was to add some of the information I compiled to make things easier for anyone who might want to go Paleo but doesn’t know how they could deal without all those yummy baked things…And most of the links below lead to FREE stuff (information and recipes). Seriously, I searched online for Paleo name-brand candy and cookie recipes—all free online! So since I love free, how about a copy of the handy dandy flour table I made? Compare vegetable, grain, nut, and seed flours…to improve any Paleo recipe because “The boundaries are imaginary. The rules are made up. The limits don’t exist,” and you might not like the grainy, dry, sweet, or other result from your labors.

NUTRITION COMPARISON OF FLOURS  (per 100 grams)

Vegetable

Carbs

Protein

Fiber

Sugar

Fat

Sweet potato

20 g

1.6 g

3 g

4.2 g

0

White potato

16 g

1.7 g

2.4 g

1.2 g

0

Butternut squash

12 g

1 g

2 g

2.2 g

0

Acorn squash

10 g

0.8 g

1.5 g

0

0

Corn

77 g

10 g

9 g

1.8 g

5 g

Acorn

54.65 g

7.49 g

0

0

30 g

Millet

73 g

11 g

3.5 g

1.7 g

4.3 g

Chia seed

37 g

20.4 g

36 g

0

30.4 g

Coconut

65 g

19 g

39 g

9 g

9 g

Almond

19.74 g

21.26 g

11.8 g

4.8 g

50,6 g

Hazelnut

16.7 g

14.95 g

9.7 g

4.34 g

60.75g

Cashew

30.19 g

18.22 g

3.3 g

5.91 g

43.85g

Peanut

16.13 g

25.8 g

8.5 g

3.97 g

49.24 g

Sunflower

18.76 g

22.78 g

10.5 g

2.62 g

49.57 g

Garbanzo

57.82 g

22.39 g

10.8 g

10.85 g

6.69 g

Sorghum

77 g

7.9 g

6.6 g

1.9 g

3.3 g

Oat

12 g

2.5 g

1.7 g

0.3 g

1.5 g

Cocoa

58 g

20 g

33 g

2 g

14 g

**Chia Seed flour is high in Omega-3s (more than seafood).

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO GET YOU BAKING PALEO YUMMIES ASAP:

Cookbooks

I have also scoured 100s of mostly free cookbooks to find recipes that would work for my needs. You can watch Amazon to see which e-books are offered for free—changes daily. The three I feel the need to share are print books I purchased that have made a huge difference in what I have handy to feed the poor child who would miss out if I didn’t try to bake gluten-free and now dairy-free foods.

  1. Lara Ferroni’s REAL SNACKS (most recipes have a gluten-free version and a dairy-free version)
  1. Kelly V. Brozyna’s THE PALEO CHOCOLATE LOVERS’ COOKBOOK
  1. Karen Morgan’s BLACKBIRD BAKERY GLUTEN-FREE

Lastly, don’t forget when you do any online searches for Paleo food that you remember to search for RAW recipes as well. Spiralized zucchini noodles are great. I cook mine though! My daughter begs for them.

Lastly, REMEMBER TO EXPERIMENT WITH RECIPES

It isn’t easy trying to work the kinks out of a new system and I threw out or gave away a lot of things I disliked after trying quick fixes. In the end, I’m glad I tried to cook so much from scratch. My child will only eat this one brand of gluten-free bread on the market and one particular variety of that bread. I guess you win some battles and you lose some. Seriously, I’m not making breakfast cereal either and spend $6 a box on little puffs or rectangles. You can only spend so much time cooking from scratch before you scratch that attempt because a book won’t write itself!

About Skhye Moncrief

Fall in love beyond this reality

moncriefAside from muscled men in fur, leather, denim, or kilts, I love cultural ecology, cultural evolution, cultural relativism, and natural processes…Big ideas…Simple concepts that manifest in world building to crazy people like me who studied anthropology and geology before turning to writing romantic fiction. My rule of thumb is to love the good, the bad, and the ugly of every culture in my tales so that every aspect of my stories resonates as real as possible.

Skhye’s website & blog (Be my guest and tell us about writing or your story!) - Find her on Facebook

Thank you so much, Skhye! This is a wealth of information, and will definitely help save research time for anyone delving into this so they can devote more time to writing! What about you? Have you delved into the world of Paleo baking? What tips have you learned. Are you inspired to try it out?

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One comment

  1. Thanks for thinking of me, Angela. I love to share information!!! I think your blog focus is awesome. (I apologize. I meant to zip here since you told me about my post being live but a million fires start eating away at my attention span the moment I get online. I am really busy this week!) ~Skhye

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