Sunday, April 11, 2010

Trying New Things is Fun and in this case, Delicious!

If you know me, then you know my boyfriend does CrossFit. In the CrossFit community, the Paleo Diet is the preferred diet.

Last year, when he started CrossFit, he didn't immediately jump into the Paleo diet; he did eventually shift over and is now fully Paleo.

Being the girlfriend (
obsessive cook) that I am, I have taken a big interest in this and have spent a lot of time reading & searching for recipes that are entirely Paleo or Paleo-friendly.

This past weekend I accompanied my boyfriend to a gathering at one of his fellow crossfitter's house. I made Paleo desserts for this and left with the desire to make even more Paleo meals!

Leo, one of the owner's of the CrossFit gym my boyfriend goes to, shared two things from a Russian deli. One is simply called Vinegrett which is a fabulous beet salad & I wasn't able to get the name of the other-but it was a delicious combination of roasted eggplant, tomatoes and I think cilantro??? Regardless, my mission today was to recreate both of these as best as possible.

From the various recipes for Vinegrett I found, I saw that it calls for potatoes, carrots, and then varying ingredients. To keep this as Paleo-friendly as possible(
as well as use what I had available at home) I made some minor adjustments. In lieu of potatoes, I used Hearts of Palm - which were a fantastic substitute! I was really happy with my version of this dish!


2 - 15 oz cans of Sliced Beets - (
make sure there is no corn syrup in this! Also, reserve about 2 TBSP - 1/4 cup of the juice.)
1 Clove of Garlic, minced
1/4 of an Onion, mined (
I used a red onion this time, but any onion will do!)
1 can of Hearts of Palm, drained & diced
1 Cup Carrots, diced
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Apple Cider Vinegar
Splash of Lemon Juice
1 tsp,
or less, Honey
Freshly Cracked Pepper
Sea Salt (optional)

Steam your diced carrots until they're tender, or as soft as you'd like them. In a bowl or cup, combine the cider vinegar, olive oil, reserved juice, honey and a splash of lemon juice. I didn't measure these out, but typically it's 2 parts oil 1 part of your other liquids - this of course can change too, it's about what's good to you. So I just poured about that amount into my bowl and whisked until everything was thoroughly combined. Add the beets, carrots, hearts of palm, garlic, onion, and season with some dill, pepper & sea salt.

If you have never tried beets and aren't sure if you ever would, I definitely recommend trying them! I don't think that I would have tried them had my boyfriend's sister not convince me to. I'm very happy I did!

I don't know what to call the other dish other than Eggplant Salad.


2 Eggplants
1 Large can of Diced Tomatoes
1 Clove of Garlic, minced
1/2 Red Onion, Minced
Small bunch of Cilantro, chopped
Olive Oil
Lemon Juice
Cider Vinegar
Freshly Cracked Pepper
Salt (optional)

Preheat your oven to 350° F.

Cut the eggplant into thick slices and cover generously with salt. Rest this on a wire rack and let rest for about an hour. Once the hour has passed, thoroughly rinse all of the salt off of the eggplant and dry it w/ a paper towel. Cut each eggplant slice into quarters and arrange on a large baking sheet. Sprinkle with Salt & Pepper and then Drizzle some olive oil over the eggplant. Bake for 45 min - 1 hour, until the eggplant is completely cooked.

In a separate bowl, combine Olive Oil, Vinegar, and a splash of lemon juice - again I didn't measure this... Whisk until everything is combined. In a different bowl, combine the onions, garlic, tomatoes, cilantro and roasted eggplant. Pour your dressing over this and Stir. Add more pepper & salt to your taste.

These were both really easy and really quick to make (
minus the time it took for eggplant...). Even more important is that they are both healthy and very delicious!


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