Pumpkin Fries with Cherry Ketchup

IMG_4117It’s pumpkin season! I love thinking of new ways to use pumpkins. Since I am nightshade free yet love fries and ketchup, creativity is required. I tried this combo last week and it was excellent. I hope you enjoy! If you like your ketchup chilled, you may make the ketchup ahead of time.

Duck fat is fabulous with fries. It gives it a rich umami flavor. If you are vegan or you don’t have duck fat, avocado oil works nicely. Actually, you could use any oil that you like in the place of the oils I suggest. The same goes with a he ketchup. You can use any fruit in place of cherries. The cherries are a nice compliment to the pumpkin, but I’ve found that almost any fruit will make a nice ketchup.

I have a post on this blog on how to peel and cut a pumpkinimg_7737

Just follow those directions, if you need the help. Then slice the pumpkin into fry shapes. It’s really not hard, especially with these small sugar pie pumpkins. If you are making a bigger batch, you can try a bigger pumpkin. Just adjust your oil so that it coats all your fries. Adjusting your salt is as easy as licking your fingers. Add enough salt that you can have a salt flavor that you like on your fingers after you toss the fries in the oil. That’s how I know my salt is right. If you get it too salty, just add a little filtered water.

Fries Ingredients:

1 Sugar Pie Pumpkin

2 TB Avocado Oil or Duck Fat, melted

Salt to taste

Ketchup Ingredients:

2 cups fresh or frozen Pitted Cherries

1/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar

1 Clove Garlic, minced

1 tsp salt


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Follow my directions here for peeling and cutting your pumpkin. Then cut the pumpkin pieces into French fry shapes. Toss with oil/fat and salt. Place in single layer on a baking sheet. Roast for 10 minutes and then flip. Roast another 10 minutes and flip. Continue roast about 5- 10 minutes more, flipping as needed to brown on at least two sides.

Once you get the fries in the oven, add all ketchup ingredients to a small pot on the stove over medium heat. Bring it to a low boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cover with the lid cracked open for about 5 minutes. Remove lid and simmer another couple minutes until cherries begin to break down. Allow to cool about 5 minutes and then purée with immersion blender or a food processor.



Mashed Turnips and Parsnips

IMG_7792I wrote a recipe for Mashed Parsnips and Pumpkin when I first started my blog. It’s a good recipe, but this one is better. The first time that a made this for a group, my dad said, “These potatoes are really good!”. When I told him that they weren’t potatoes, He was impressed. My sister made them the following weekend for a party she gave.

Lately, I’ve found a new love for gravy, so I needed a fabulous mashed potatoes substitute. I developed this recipe and refined it over the past several weeks.IMG_7790It’s great with gravy and it’s delicious alone. I have an option where you can add ginger if you are serving it with something that works with ginger. I use that option for a Korean Short Ribs recipe, and I used it last night to go with Ahi Tuna with Ponzu sauce.

I use Coconut Kefir in this recipe. Coconut Kefir was one of the first recipes that I wrote for this blog. It’s a main staple in my diet. Because of the high fat level in coconut milk, it’s more of a yogurt consistency than kefir. If you don’t want to start making your own kefir, you can use coconut milk that you have thickened in the fridge. But I highly recommend making your own kefir. It takes less than 5 minutes a day.

This recipe calls for a steamer. If you don’t have one, you may boil the veggies until tender. I love my steamer. I have been cooking with one for 20 years. They are cheap and they make life so much easier. I use mine every week for this recipe, broccoli, and asparagus.

Serves 4-6


1 1/2 pound Turnips

1 1/2 pound Parsnips

3 TBSP Avocado or Coconut Oil

5 cloves Garlic, minced

1/2 tsp Salt

1 TBSP Chives, minced


Peel and cubed the turnips and parsnips. Place them in the steamer. Steam them for 45 minutes. IMG_7794

Meanwhile sautée garlic in oil over medium heat in small saucepan for 2-3 minutes until it browns slightly.

Pour the garlic oil in a large bowl with the kefir.IMG_7793

When the veggies are done in the steamer, pour them into the bowl. Mash with potato masher or electric mixer for smoother consistency. Stir in chives and salt. Enjoy!



If your serving a meal that works well with ginger, add a tablespoon of minced ginger to sautée along with your garlic.


Strawberry Ketchup


I am a recovered ketchup addict. Going Nightshade Free made me always on the search for a new best form of ketchup. It’s strawberry season, so it’s time to use strawberries. They not only taste great as ketchup, but the color is also pleasing. This ketchup is a great option for making Cocktail Sauce. It’s also fabulous on Butternut Fries.


2 cups of Strawberries, halved or quartered

1/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar

1 clove Garlic, minced

1 tsp Salt


Combine all the ingredients in a small pot. Bring to boil, cover and simmer 15 minutes.

Allow to cool.

Insert immersion blender and process until smooth. Alternatively, you could process in a food processor or blender.

Store in glass container for a week. You can make it in a double batch and freeze as ice cubes, which allows you to thaw only as much as you need.


Coco Date Balls


I developed this recipe so that my friend who is also on AIP and I could have a treat for Valentines Day. Both of us have been able to add chocolate back into our diet (yea!). Usually the chocolate I eat is not sweet. I eat 95% dark chocolate. These Date Balls were definitely much sweeter than anything that I eat on a regular basis, which is why they were such a treat for Valentines Day. I would recommend a serving size of one.


12 ounces pitted dates

boiling water

2 TB coco powder

1/2 cup shredded coconut, maybe more


Pour dates into a bowl. Boil enough water to submerge dates. Pour boiling water over the dates and let them sit 10 minutes to soften.

Strain dates and let them sit in colander 10 minutes to dry. Making sure to shake out all the excess water.

Place dried softened dates in a food processor and process until smooth. Add coco powder and cinnamon and process until combined.

Place parchment or wax paper on all baking tray. Pour shredded coconut on a plate beside the baking tray. Roll the date mixture into a ball with your fingers and then roll the ball in the shredded coconut continue until done with the batch. The date mixture will be sticky and the shredded coconut will smooth it out. After rolling in the coconut and making the ball smooth, place it on the baking tray to set. Transfer from tray to covered container. Keep date balls in the fridge for a week or freeze them to keep longer.

Coco Date Covered Cherry Variation:

Add 6 Pitted Cherries to list of ingredients. Take your cherries and roll the date mixture around the cherries. Then roll the cherry stuffed date ball in the coconut to smooth out. Place on tray to set.

Pumpkin and Cranberry Stew in the Crock Pot

img_7745I had some stew meat and couldn’t find any recipes that looked good to me, so I made this one up. I have tried it with different meat and pumpkins. You can use any kind of pumpkin in this recipe, but a sugar or pie pumpkin is going to be the perfect size. If you get a larger pumpkin, then double the rest of the recipe, except for the vinegar. This recipe is easy! I recently wrote a blog post on how to peel and cut a pumpkin that I’ll link you to by clicking on the words “peel and cut” in the ingredients list. I like to get everything ready the night before and let it sit in the fridge over night. That way my husband can just start the crock pot when he gets up in the morning.



1 pounds stew meat ( beef, venison or lamb- it’s fun to mix two types of meat)

1 pumpkin, peel and cubed

1 cup of cranberries, fresh or frozen

4 cups bone broth

1 TB fresh sage, minced

2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

4 cups of baby spinach


Add all ingredients to the Crock Pot except for the spinach.

Cook on low for 7-9 hours.

Turn off heat, add spinach, stir and taste to see if its seasoned the way you like it. Add more salt and pepper if desired.







How to Peel and Cut A Pumpkin

I love cooking with pumpkin. At first I was intimidated by the idea of cutting one. Like most things, it’s actually easier than you think. Having a nice sharpe knife is a plus when doing this.


Hold the pumpkin by the stem and slice down the sides to remove most of the outter skin. You don’t have to get it all. The rest you can cut off later.img_7735img_7736

Next, turn the pumpkin on its side and slice off the top.


Scoop out the seeds. I always roast these for my family.

Start cutting the sides of the pumpkin in wedges, pull each section off and cut in cubes, fries or whatever shape that you’re looking for.


Slice off any remaining skin or fibrous strands.


Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies (totes AIP options) Egg free, dairy free, grain free, nut free, low sugar, soy free


When you begin AIP, you diet is very strict, but many people can start to reintroduce different foods after the first month. I have been able to reintroduce chocolate, wine, small amounts of sugar and vanilla. Most of those reintroductions made this recipe possible. You can omit the chocolate and vanilla if you need, but the small amount of date sugar and honey are what differentiates cookies and biscuits. If you want a cookie taste, then at least leave in the sweeteners. It’s very subtle. I developed this recipe so I could have cookies for the holidays. I wrote this for a small batch, but this can easily be doubled or quadrupled. It’s hard to find chocolate chips that don’t have soy, so check labels. I used Enjoy Life’s mini chocolate chips, which worked well. I like the small bites of chocolate. Less is more. This recipe uses gelatin in place of eggs as binder, so it’s almost like pressing these cookies into a mold, which holds the shape. I take a wonderful supplement of Grassfed Collagen Peptides, but when I cook, I typically use a less expensive beef gelatin. It make sure the greatest egg replacer.

Small batch 9-12 cookies

1/2 cup coconut flour

1/4 cup arrowroot flour

1/4 cup tapioca flour

1 TB date sugar

pinch of salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

8 TB coconut oil, melted

2 TB beef gelatin and 6 TB water

1 TB honey

1 tsp vanilla, optional

1/4 cup chocolate chips


Preheat the oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Prepare gelatin by taking 6 TB water and warming it in a small saucepan. Once it’s nice and warm, but not boiling, remove from heat and whisk in gelatin. Once that is smooth, whisk in honey. Place pan aside while gelatin blooms and mixture cools.

Combine dry ingredients. Add coconut oil and vanilla and mix in. The mixture will be runny like a thin pancake batter. Add gelatin mixture and stir well. The dough will become thicker and crumbly.img_7722

Add chocolate chips and stir in well.

To transfer to the baking sheet, you will need something with which to mold your cookies. I used my rounded 2 Tablespoon and it was perfect. You could also try a 1/4 cup measuring cup and only fill it 3/4 of the way.  Take your 2 Tablespoon spoon and pack it with your dough to mold it in there and then turn it out on the prepared baking sheet.img_7723img_7724

Cook for 8 minutes and then take out the cookies and slightly flatten them with the rounded edge of your spoon.img_7725img_7726

Cook another 4 minutes or until browned on the top.