Pa­leo in­com­plete but there are pros

Central Otago Mirror - - FEATURES -

We have had the Atkins diet, South Beach diet, Mediter­ranean diet, and nowwe have the Pa­leo diet. Most of you have prob­a­bly heard or come across the Pa­leo diet, oth­er­wise known as the ‘‘Cave­man’’ diet.

The es­sen­tial be­lief of those that fol­low the Pa­leo diet, is that our ge­netic blue­print does not match our 21st Cen­tury diet and life­style. Fol­low­ers of the diet, as I un­der­stand it, be­lieve food has evolved at a far faster rate than our bod­ies have been able to de­velop to process it since the end of the Pa­le­olithic era. So di­eters on this plan con­sume only fish, meat, veg­eta­bles, some fruit, seeds and healthy oils. There are no grains, legumes nor dairy, how­ever re­cent sci­en­tific ev­i­dence sug­gests that in fact th­ese were con­sumed.

The hu­man body is an as­sem­bly of in­her­ited traits that have been trans­formed since the be­gin­ning of time. Th­ese changes did not cease when the Pa­leo pe­riod ceased, thus con­tra­dict­ing some of the core be­liefs of the diet. An ex­am­ple of this is our abil­ity to di­gest dairy, which de­rived about 7000 years ago due to a gene mu­ta­tion.

If I amhon­est, a diet high in meats and an­i­mal fats and low in grain and legumes seems to con­tra­dict a lot of what I was taught in nu­tri­tion at uni­ver­sity. Don’t get me wrong, the diet has nu­mer­ous pros, which in­clude the re­moval of pro­cessed foods and re­fined sug­ars, plus a high con­sump­tion of healthy greens. How­ever . . . a diet that cuts out two ma­jor food groups (dairy and whole­grains) seems some­what nu­tri­tion­ally in­com­plete to me.

The recipe be­low is de­rived from a ba­sic Pa­leo method­ol­ogy and is de­li­cious. Here rice has been re­placed with blended cau­li­flower, and a faux rice dish has been cre­ated. I didn’t tell my hus­band this and he thought he was eat­ing cous­cous . . . see how you get on.

Please let it be noted that peo­ple the world over are fol­low­ing this diet many with pos­i­tive out­comes to both weight and health.

Pa­leo Prawns and Chorizo Paella In­gre­di­ents

350g prawns 1 piece of chorizo , skin re­moved and diced

a cau­li­flower with flo­rets cut off 1 medium cour­gette sliced into 1 cm slices

red onion sliced 3 cloves gar­lic minced 1 ta­ble­spoon pa­prika Good pinch saf­fron 1 ta­ble­spoon tomato paste 125ml wa­ter and stock (home­made chicken or veg­e­tar­ian best, hon­estly I used packet stuff) 100ml white wine 1 red pep­per sliced 1 chilli , seeds re­moved and chopped finely 3 ta­ble­spoons of healthy oil (I used sun­flower)

Gar­nish

1 good hand­ful of flat leaf pars­ley chopped 2 sliced spring onions sliced Juice of one lemon

Method

1. Blend the cau­li­flower in blen­der un­til sim­i­lar size of rice. Or slice finely with a sharp knife. 2. Heat a pan to medium to high heat and add 1 ta­ble­spoon of oil. Cook the chorizo for 1-2 min un­til browned. Re­move from the pan leav­ing the de­li­cious red oils from the chorizo. 3. Cook the prawns in the same pan for round 30 sec­onds each side. Re­move from pan. 4. Add in a cou­ple of ta­ble­spoons more oil and add in your onions, chilli, pep­pers, cour­gette and gar­lic and cook for 3-4 mins till soft­ened a lit­tle. 5. Deglaze pan by adding the wine to the vege mix. Let it come back to a sim­mer for 2 mins then add in stock and paste. Cook for a fur­ther 2-3 mins un­til re­duced/thick­ened a lit­tle then add in your blended cau­li­flower, prawns and chorizo. 6. Con­tinue to cook for a fur­ther 2-3 mins and serve im­me­di­ately. Gar­nish with pars­ley, spring onions and squeeze over lemon. Serves 2-3

Healthy: Pa­leo Prawns and Chorizo Paella.

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