At Thanksgiving and Christmas last year, my strategy was to make all the favorites for everyone, and then make some separate dishes that were paleo for E.J. and I. The result is a lot of extra work, a bunch of leftovers we can’t eat, and a feeling like we’re missing out on something and/or giving into the temptation.
So for Easter, I decided to try to make the meal as compliant as I could, which meant looking for recognizable dishes with an alternate preparation. Here’s how the menu went:
- Deviled Eggs – ok, I didn’t go compliant on these and used Miracle Whip. This was one of the concessions I made, only because I’ve tried to make them with avocado oil mayo, and it’s just not as good.
- Italian Style Zucchini Rolls – Oddly enough, these turned out to be the star of the show. They’re fairly simple to make (I used sherry balsamic vinegar for the zucchini) and everyone loved the flavors. I made these right before everyone arrived, and if I had it to do again, I would have done them the night before. I think they would have kept just fine. They were technically primal since I used goat cheese, but they were very good.
- Ham – I tried to find one that didn’t have any sugar, but struck out and settled on one that had less.
- Stuffed Mushrooms – These were also very well received and we didn’t really miss the breadcrumbs or cheese that normally would go in a recipe like this.
- Sweet Potato Casserole – This was the other star of the show. I made some mashed sweet potatoes just with butter and salt for the goody two-shoes (like E.J.) and made the casserole for the rest of us that like them candied. They were well received by all.
- Green Bean Casserole – I wasn’t as impressed with this as I had hoped. I used coconut milk to keep it paleo, but missed the creaminess that comes from the dairy. I might try another approach altogether next time rather than trying to stay close to the original. It was also VERY time consuming, and I’d like to find something a little quicker and easier
- Paleo Rolls – These turned out very well, and my guests were pleasantly surprised by the taste. Very satisfying, and I was able to limit my portion to 1. They have lots of tapioca flour so they’re not exactly low-carb, but they were a fair alternative to the standard butter rolls I also had available.
Also on the table was a salad and honeyed carrots provided by our good friend Anita (also doing the Paleo thing with her husband)
- Strawberry (and Blueberry Pie) – I threw some blueberries into this recipe, but otherwise stayed true to it. The pie turned out ok, but the crust was very hard. I think next time I’ll try a honey graham crust for a paleo pie and see how that goes.
- Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Cake (Against All Grain) – this turned out pretty well. E.J. thinks its awesome, while I would rate it OK. It’s just not as bright and sweet as my old recipe, but it’s still good.