Date And Apricot Glazed Orange Chicken

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This is the perfect dish to keep you warm as we head into the fall and winter months. It’s sweet and delicious but surprisingly filling. It also won’t take you longer than 15 minutes to make which means it is the perfect go to dish when you’re in a hurry. Not to mention that dried dates and apricots store well, so you can always keep them handy and keep this as a backup meal option.

One pot, 15 minutes to cook and nutritious…what’s not to love?

INGREDIENTS

1 chicken breast (6 – 8 ounces)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons coconut oil
1/8 cup dried dates, sliced
1/8 cup dried apricots, sliced
1/2 cup water
1 orange, juiced

RECIPE

In a frying pan, heat coconut oil on medium heat.
Season chicken breast with salt, place in frying pan.
Add 1/2 of the orange juice to pan, cover and cook for roughly 4 – 5 minutes. (reduce heat slightly if juice is cooking off too fast)
Reduce heat to low.
Flip chicken and add remaining orange juice, dates, apricots and water. Cover and cook for 4 – 5 minutes.
After ensuring chicken is cooked through, remove and place on serving dish.
Increase heat to medium and continue to cook juice, dates and apricots (uncovered) until mixture reduces down. You’ll know the mixture is done when you still have liquid with the dates and apricots but the liquid is thick like honey. (You do not want to cook all the liquid off, this should just take a minute or two.)
Remove from heat and drizzle mixture over chicken.
You’re ready to eat.

I hope this dish keeps you happy and warm as we head into winter. If you’re watching your carbs or are craving a particular level of sweetness feel free to adjust the amount of dates and apricots added.

Happy Fall!

Melissa Van Dover

@melissavandover | melissavandover.com

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Devils on Horseback

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“Devils on Horseback” is a very fancy (and somewhat odd) name for the decadent little appetizer otherwise referred to as “bacon wrapped dates.”

In writing this post I did some research on where this now popular appetizer got its name, but it seems there is no clear answer – just a number of fables with not much evidence to back them up.

Regardless of their name, these little devils are so delicious you might just catch yourself making them two days in a row…or at least that’s what tends to happen when I make them!

INGREDIENTS

3 strips bacon, cut in half
6 dates, sliced in half
6 thin slices of a filling of your choice – fillings we love include apple, pear, cooked yam slices, or for those who indulge in grass-fed cheese, that’s a great option as well!

RECIPE

Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees F.
On a cutting board or prepping plate, make “sandwiches” with the dates, placing the filling of your choice between two date halves.
Then place one date “sandwich” on each slice of bacon.
Roll each strip of bacon around the date “sandwich” to form the bacon wrapped dates, and ideally hold each one in place with an oven-friendly skewer or toothpick.
Once the oven has reached 425 degrees F, place the baking sheet with the bacon wrapped dates in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the bacon is well cooked.
Remove the baking tray from the oven and place each bacon wrapped date on a serving plate.
Enjoy while warm.

As Nick Offerman said,

“You know, it’s hard to beat bacon at any time of the day.”

 

Camilla

@camillacarboni | camillacarboni.com

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Almond Power Balls

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When it comes to living a Paleo Lifestyle, snacking is the thing that many people find most challenging. Vending machines are off-limits, standard granola bars and cookies are loaded with all those naughty ingredients we try to avoid, and often time isn’t on our side to whip up Paleo equivalents. That’s when quick and easy items, like Almond Power Bars can be a fabulous go-to (plus, they make a great dessert!)

Packed with nut and date power, these Balls are rich in fiber, healthy oils, potassium, magnesium and iron. Let’s get rollin’

INGREDIENTS

1 organic, free range egg
2 tablespoons grass-fed butter
1 tablespoon coconut palm sugar
1/2 cup dates, pitted and chopped
1 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup coconut flakes
2 tablespoons almond butter

RECIPE

Makes 10 Almond Power Balls:

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over low heat.
Add the egg and coconut palm sugar and stir quickly until thoroughly blended.
Toss the dates, almonds, coconut flakes and almond butter into a mixing bowl and pour in the heated egg and sugar mixture.
Stir until all the ingredients are well combined.
Using your hands, form the mixture into bite sized balls (if you find the mixture to be too moist, simply add a sprinkle of coconut flour or extra coconut flakes.)
Place in the refrigerator for about an hour to set and cool before serving.

Enjoy them one bite at a time as a healthy power snack on the go, a good-for-you dessert, or as a workout breakfast buddy. Drizzle them with more almond butter for an extra indulgent and protein-rich treat!

Camilla Carboni

@camillacarboni | camillacarboni.com

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Date Orange Loaf

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Orange rinds too often go to waste and, when combined with naturally sweet fruits, like dates, make an irresistible taste sensation not too be missed.

In this easy-to-make loaf, I used the base recipe of my popular Paleo Apricot Muffins and added a sweet, citrus twist.

The loaf is high in fiber and comes out deliciously moist. This recipe is ideal for 1 mini loaf (about 5.75 x 3 inches) and can also be made into muffins.

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup chopped dates
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
1 shake salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
4 eggs
1/2 teaspoon honey/raw agave nectar
Grated rind of 1 large orange

RECIPE

Pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Pulse the dates in a food processor until finely chopped.
Place the rest of the ingredients (except the orange rind) in the food processor and pulse for another minute or so, until well combined.
Add the grated orange rind and pulse for about 10 seconds.
Scoop the mix into a oven-safe bread dish and bake for approximately 30 to 40 minutes (the center of the loaf rises last), or until a skewer through the center comes out clean.

Enjoy the sweet and citrus taste of this decadent loaf,

Camilla Carboni

@camillacarboni | camillacarboni.com

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Paleo Apple Pie

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Apple Pie!

It’s one of those famous American treats that we just can’t live without. Unfortunately, traditional Apple Pie has more sugar than apples and more gluten than goodness, which is why Apple Pie was on my Paleo To Do List!

This recipe is sweetened with natural dates and is 100% grain-free and dairy-free. Now there’s an Apple Pie you can indulge in!

INGREDIENTS

4 large red apples, chopped
2/3 of a cup chopped dates
1 and 2/3 of a cup water
2 tablespoons cinnamon

RECIPE

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Place the apples, dates and water in a large sauté pan and set the temperature gauge to medium heat.

Paleo Apple Pie Filling
Stir and let the apples soften. Once the water evaporates, add a cup of water and the cinnamon. Stir, then cover and let simmer for about 10 minutes.
Pour the mixture into a baked Paleo Pie Crust, using the caramelized dates that tend to line the bottom of the pan to fill in the gaps between the apple pieces.

Paleo Apple Pie Preparation
Top with Paleo Pie Crust crumbles to “seal” the pie.
Bake for 20 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let the pie cool before slicing.

Tip: Paleo Pie Crust is easier to crumble when chilled. Use un-baked Paleo Pie Crust mixture and refrigerate it for a few hours before crumbling over pies for the best finish.

Enjoy!

Camilla Carboni

@camillacarboni | camillacarboni.com

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Natural Sweet Tea

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Sweet tea could possibly be the thing I miss the most when it comes to my pre-paleo diet. However, the amount of sugar that it takes to make true sweet tea is ridiculous and when I think about what it does to your body in terms of blood sugar and insulin levels it makes me cringe.

One of the beautiful things about the paleo diet is that there are always ways to enjoy versions of what used to be our favorite foods, we even have the chance to create new favorites. I say “used to be” because the longer we stick with a diet, lifestyle the more our taste buds and preferences start to change. If I had sweet tea now I’m not actually sure I’d enjoy it as much as I once did because I simply can’t consume sugar the way I did without feeling horrible. So I’ve decided to make a new “favorite”, naturally sweetened tea, sweet tea.

You’re probably thinking, well just add agave or honey to your tea and then it’ll be sweet. I could do that but I wanted to see if I could take it a step further and make it more natural. So I decided to see if I could sweeten my tea with dates! I know it sounds crazy but I actually often eat dates with my ice tea and it’s a great flavor combination. Here we go!

INGREDIENTS

2 dates (pitted)
12 ounces of water
black tea
a few ice cubes
*This recipe can easily be doubled, tripled, quadrupled and so forth to make the quantity you need.

RECIPE

In a blender or processor, blend your dates (make sure they’re pitted), then set aside. A note: if you like super sweet tea you may choose to use more dates.
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Boil 12 ounces of water and brew tea according to package instructions.
Remove tea bags or strain tea, immediately add blended dates.
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Stir occasionally until tea cools to room temperature.
Strain out dates and pour over ice(if you’d like you can always keep the date pieces in the tea and enjoy as is).

It’s important to remember that as soon as the tea is done brewing that you must add the dates as quickly as possible. The hot water helps to pull the natural sweetness out of the dates.

Enjoy!

Melissa Van Dover

@mvandover | melissavandover.com

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