Hey y’all! As you might imagine, I get a ton of books to review every month. It’s about time I start sharing the best of the best with you, so I’ve started a new series that passes along a tip, recipe or insight from what I’m reading. Today I’m reviewing Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans.
Need a happy place? You can share mine
If you’ve given up some of your favorite restaurants because the chemical-laden food “hangovers” just aren’t worth it anymore, I get it. I’ve been there, and though I definitely felt better, I also missed the smorgasbord of tantalizing flavors I once loved.
They say that books can take you places you never dreamed of – and that’s true – but they can also transform the place you already are. Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans is doing just that for me. It’s making my kitchen my happy place all over again.
Michelle has graciously given me a recipe to share with you guys today – and I’ll do that soon – but first I want to tell you why Nom Nom Paleo made my top picks.
5 Reasons I ♥ this book
1. There are cartoons.
CARTOONS, y’all. I used to love Sunday morning funnies, and this book just brings it all back.
2. Last night I made Crab + Avocado Temaki (aka California Hand Rolls) for dinner.
They were quick, easy and delicious – how had I never thought of that before?!?! I guess I thought some recipes were for 5 star chefs only, but Michelle makes things super easy for plain Jane cooks like me.
3. Though they’re off the beaten path, these recipes are things my kids will actually want to eat.
And should they need a little persuasion from time-to-time, there are lots of photos of Michelle’s boys chowing down with big, bright eyes and radiant faces.
4. There are tons of gorgeous photos + lots of visual step-by-step instructions
. . . For those of us who grasp things better when we see them.
5. It can double as a defense weapon against rapid ducks.
Hopefully Daddypotamus and I are the only ones who will ever find the need to use a book in such a way, but either way this thing is MADE TO LAST. Sturdy stitch binding, thick, glossy paper, and a nice, super thick cover. Everything about it exudes quality.
Want to pick this book up for yourself? Or maybe a friend?
And now, the recipe!
Smashed Steak Skewers + Cherry Barbecue Sauce
Simple, tasty and kid-approved. Recipe and photos from Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans by Michelle Tam and Henry Fong/Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC 2013
Here’s what to hunt and gather to make 16 skewers:
For the Cherry Barbecue Sauce:
- 2 teaspoons ghee or fat of choice (where to buy grass fed ghee)
- ½ cup minced shallots
- Kosher salt (where to buy unrefined kosher salt)
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated (about 1 tablespoon)
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste (where to buy organic tomato paste in glass jars)
- ¼ cup coconut aminos (where to buy coconut aminos)
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar (where to buy organic balsamic vinegar)
- ¼ cup apple juice
- 10 ounces pitted fresh or frozen dark sweet cherries, roughly chopped
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste (where to buy organic, whole black pepper)
For the Smashed Steak Skewers:
- 1½-pound flank steak
- Kosher salt (where to buy unrefined kosher salt)
- Freshly ground pepper (where to buy organic, whole black pepper)
- 2 tablespoons melted ghee (where to buy grass fed ghee)
- ¼ cup scallions, thinly sliced (optional)
Special Equipment/Tools Needed:
1. First, make the barbecue sauce. Melt the ghee over medium heat in a small saucepan. Add the shallots and a pinch of salt and sauté until translucent, about 5 minute. Stir in the garlic, ginger, and tomato paste, and sauté for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the coconut aminos, vinegar, apple juice, and cherries, and bring the ingredients to a boil.
2. Lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until the cherry mixture is thickened. While the sauce is simmering, stir occasionally and smush the cherries against the side of the pot.
3. Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer the sauce to a bowl and set aside.
4. Cut the steak in half lengthwise (along the grain). Then, slice the steak in half across the grain, then in fourths, and finally in eighths. You should end up with sixteen rectangular pieces of meat. Carefully stab each chunk of meat through the center with a skewer.
5. Now comes the fun part: grab a hefty meat pounder or small cast-iron skillet, and smash each steak skewer until it’s about 1/2 inch thick. Season the beef with salt and pepper, and brush both sides with melted ghee.
6. Fire up your backyard grill, and cook over high heat for 1-2 minutes on each side.
7. Rest the meat skewers for 5-10 minutes before brushing on the cherry barbecue sauce. A garnish of fresh scallions is optional, but it can instantly transform this rugged plate of skewers into a more refined dish. Serve immediately.
Want More Recipes?
(all photos courtesy of Nom Nom Paleo)
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