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Kitchen Essentials

Posted Jul 13 2010 12:00am

There are a few products I’ve come across that play an important role in the Paleo/Primal kitchen. I have made all these things from scratch in the past, but often there simply isn’t time and having acceptable substitutes for the real, homemade product is important.

My cabinets contain a Lazy Susan filled with spices like thyme, rosemary, cumin, paprika, chili powder, cloves, cinnamon, dutch cocoa powder, coriander, sea salt, and the standard onion and garlic powder; bottles of apple cider vinegar and balsamic vinegar for salad dressings; olive oil and coconut oil; various teas and coffee; cans of Thai Kitchen coconut milk; cans of tomatoes and organic tomato paste; and canned wild salmon (the consistency of farmed salmon makes it impossible to can, so if you prefer wild-caught, canned is a reliable and inexpensive source for fish patties), canned tuna, and sardines (an excellent source of Omega-3s). I also have bee pollen and honey in there – Bee Pollen because it looked cool, and honey to use sparingly when bake gluten-free treats for special occasions.

Look for these coconut products – coconut is an excellent source of healthy fats. Google “medium-chain triglycerides.”

Vegetable Broth - If you look at the ingredients in your store-bought broth, there are often a disturbing number of un-pronounce-ables. Some, I noticed, even contained gluten! This Pacific Natural Foods vegetable broth is delicious and nothing but organic veggies and spices.

Although Trader Joe’s has been under fire for some practices regarding the fish it carries, it’s tough to weigh in on the wild vs. farmed debate and which to choose based on health concerns vs. concerns over proper fishing practices. I like Trader Joe’s canned tuna because it’s nothing but tuna, water and salt – no broth and no un-pronounceables. I’m still waiting and listening for more on this topic – feel free to enlighten me.

I adore my cast-iron skillet. I try not to use my non-stick pans too much as I’m unsure of the long-term effects of the chemicals they’re coated with.

Grass-fed jerky from Paleo Brands has a lovely sweetness and is also easily transported.

The cacao nibs, dried Goji berries, and pistachios in this Kopali mix are great to munch on in a movie.

When you have these staples on hand, you can create all manner of Paleo deliciousness!

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