My “Pal-Leo”—And A Successful Recipe Fail!

No.  I’m not cheating on Bonaparte with a guy named Leo.  I’m not hanging with DiCaprio either.


Hey Leo. I think you are taking the Paleo diet too seriously. Leave the bear alone. Have some steak instead!

My “Pal Leo” is the Paleo diet!


basically the Paleo Diet is this–with some yummy organ meats thrown in!

I’m not kidding. But let me backtrack a bit.  My eating habits have become absolutely horrific over the past year. The loss of a job really shouldn’t be an excuse for the gluttonous life I’ve been leading. But hey, that’s how I handle stress.  That’ right. I’m an emotional eater!

Grande bouffe (la)

Yes. That would be the gluttonous me. I could relate to this film. BTW, might I suggest watching this darkly funny film if you get the chance?

Over the past year, I’ve gained a shitload of blubber, lard, fat, weight.  I should be ashamed but I’m not.  What I am is concerned. Concerned about my health –especially since I have no health insurance until Medicaid approves my application.

And it isn’t just about my blobfish gut, nor is it about my thighs that beautifully resemble curds of cottage cheese—the large curd at that!  It isn’t about the mud flaps that are my underarms or side boobage slipping out of my bra.


My unhappy blobby gut resembles this blobfish!

It’s about the inside of my body that is cause for concern.  With my eating habits that even stunned Bonaparte, I really was starting to have some serious stomach issues.  I was bloaty—and when you have a stomach that is spilling over the top of your jeans, well—it isn’t very attractive.

I was burping to the point Bonaparte started complaining in French.

And…I was so full of gas.  How full of gas was I? I’m glad you asked.  I was so full of gas that I could walk to my driveway, open up that little door that opens up to the thingy that you put the gas nozzle into when you are getting gas, pull my pants down, shove my ass into that gas thingy and pump away! Nice visual—eh?


That’s right buddy. I could fill up a tank with gas–and you won’t have to pay!

Heartburn, lethargy.  The whole kit and caboodle.

Then Oona suggested that I read a book she left behind for me some time ago.


Oona loves mommy so much that she got mommy to read a book about healthy eating. Now mommy is hooked and when mommy goes to visit Oona in two weeks, mommy will only cook healthy Paleo meals! Thank you Oona!

   “It Starts With Food. Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life In Unexpected Ways” The book is written by Dallas and Melissa Hartwig.  Dallas being a physical therapist and Melissa being a Certified Sports Nutrutionist. Neither is a medical doctor.

Pal leo it starts with food

For the most part, this book is very good. But there are claims of curing serious diseases that I find to be extremely misleading. 

I read the book. A lot of what I read made sense.  A lot of what I read made me think otherwise.  The book makes you follow an incredibly strict 30-day plan of—no sugar, no dairy, no gluten.  If you so much as have a drop of milk in your coffee or a Kir Royale, it is back to day one.  Believe me, I’m all about the no sugar, dairy and gluten if it’ll make me feel better.  But really, enough bullshit!  On the weekends, I am having my Kir Royale with Bonaparte!

Regardless, reading the book got me on the Paleo track.  I’m doing what I call “Paleo Lite”.

Pal leo two cookbooks

I picked up a couple of cookbooks and believe it or not, there’s some really REALLY decent recipes in both!

For three weeks I have not had any sugar with the exceptions being my aperitifs on Friday and Saturday and the other being when I add a bit of almond paste to the “green” shakes that I make.  I have not had any gluten-which is a miracle in itself, nor have I had any dairy.  I’m also doing low-carb.

No pasta. No bread. No sweets. No cheese. No sauces made with cream or flour.

Pal leo. wont make these

I’m not going to be making any more croissants any time soon!

I’m existing on meats—especially liver. YUM. I love me some liver—which is great because I am a fan of “Offal“! It’s “offally” good! I’m eating more chicken than usual.  Fish. Fruit. Tons of Vegetables.  And Nuts! I’m using rice flour for coating since it is non-gluten and permitted.  I’m drinking almond milk—it’s allowed.

The best part is that I my stomach issues have subsided. I’m in a state of shock. Really. I am!  I’m not belching. My gut is actually shrinking to the point that my blobfish gut has turned into a blowfish gut.  I’m not as bloaty and my GERD has been kept at bay.  I’m not even gassy!


Yes. My gut is shrinking from large blobfish to smaller blowfish!

It’s snowing now and while the snow falls, I’ll have my tea; instead of regular milk, I’ll have it with almond milk.  A mixture of well-measured out nuts, raisins and dates will stand in for the ooey-gooey macaroni and cheese that I would have made in the past to enjoy during a snowy winter’s day.


Raw cashews, raw almonds, raisins and chopped dates. My new Mac & Cheese!

And while Bonaparte and I enjoy our aperitifs, I’ll make do without the little appetizers that we share. He will be able to enjoy the little treats all by himself.!!

Anyway, I did have a craving for gnocchi.   Regular potatoes are a Palee-no!  Sweet potatoes are allowed so I tried to “create” a recipe for sweet potato gnocchi.   Here’s what I did:

My Sweet Potato Gnocchi that Failed But Still Tasted Great!

ingredients for gnoochi

Ingredients: Two sweet potatoes. Rosemary. White Rice Flour. ONE egg (even though two are pictured). Nutmeg. Red and regular pepper. Garlic Powder. Kosher Salt.

2 Sweet Potatoes.  Dampened, slits poked into them with a knife, and wrapped in dampened paper towels.  Into the microwave for 12 minutes.

cooked sweet potatos

After 12 minutes in the microwave the sweet pototoes will be perfectly cooked!

Then I scooped out the inside and placed in a bowl with a couple of Rosemary branches , covered and let everything cool. The Rosemary would infuse the potatoes.

infusing with rosemary

Rosemary is so great. It is such a strong aromatic that it infuses ANYTHING!  

Then I mixed in a bit of garlic powder, salt, pepper, one egg, a bit of nutmeg and 3/4 cup of rice flour.

mixing it up

Made a nice but way too sticky dough. Red flag that the gnocchi recipe is failing!

Rolled it up in wax paper and chilled.

rolled in waxed paper

Rolled up, chilled then cut–in theory great. In reality–fail!

Cut pieces off the roll. My recipe was a fail as gnocchi.  But…ever the optimist, I turned things around and ended up with little sweet potato fritters, which I dredged in rice flour and sautéed in butter (allowed) and olive oil.

They were a delicious accompaniment with my liver and parsnip mash!

sweetpotatoes cooking

Alright. This photo is incredibly unappetizing. But……


…look above the mashed parsnips. The newly renamed “sweet potato fritters” were a success!  They were really delicious with the natural sweetness of the parsnips and the earthiness of the liver.  I dredged the liver in rice flour. The rice flour is gluten free and keeps the moisture in. I’ve been using rice flour forever for this very purpose and never realized it was gluten-free!


I’m not too fond of the green shakes I’ve been drinking—but they are a way to keep me filled up and are an easy way for me to get more veg in. I’ve been using Kale that I’ve had in a bag for a while—it’s more of an “earthier” taste.  My big “cheat” is a spoonful of almond paste.  The almond paste has sugar in it.  I’m a rebel.

Pal leo The Green Shake

The green shake. Truthfully, it doesn’t taste that great–but it serves the purpose of filling me up!

It’s hard. I’m not gonna lie.  There are times when I just want something sweet.  I baked two Lemon pound cakes yesterday because Bonaparte had a craving.  It would be great to have a, two, three pieces one of them to myself, slathered with lemon curd while sipping on a hot chocolate topped with a huge dollop of whipped cream.

cakes for bonaparte

Two lemony pound cakes for Bonaparte! I AM a giver!

It would also be comforting to cook up a one-pound box of macaroni and make a cheese sauce from not one or two, but three cheeses. Make. Bake. Devour!

Cheese and Macaroni

Paleo or not. I would STILL rather be devouring THIS on such a snowy day like today!

Instead, I’m just going to be patient and keep my willpower up!  My size 8 jeans that didn’t even zip up a month ago fit just fine now!

back in size 8 jeans

Keeping my chins up that I stick to the new eating habits. I need to lose about 20 pounds! 

Off to deal with Snowmageddon 2016 for now. A day of organizing my writing files. Bonaparte gifted me with my very own file cabinet. Actually he is tired of the mess I created and the gift is more of “hinted” me with a file cabinet!

my file cabinet


My project for the day. Organizing my files!


Enjoy the day! And Don’t go near the yellow snow! Frank Zappa knows!

About Catherine

Far from perfect, but enjoying life as a non-perfect and flawed individual at 60 years young. I'm still wondering what I'll be when I grow up! The characters in my life's screenplay include my better half. He is a refined Frenchman who grew up in Paris and summered in St. Tropez. I grew up in Long Island and summered in Long Island. I am not refined. My three grown children are also a big part of my life. For their sake, they happily live where their careers have taken them! But I can still mother them from a distance! I write about the mundane. I write about deeply shallow issues. But whatever I write or muse about--it'll always be a bit on the humorous and positive side! It's all good!
This entry was posted in Organizing, Paleo Diet, Recipes, Snowmageddon2016 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to My “Pal-Leo”—And A Successful Recipe Fail!

  1. Looking good there GF!!! Been watching what I eat as well, and exercising some, when the pain allows,,,down 6 1/2 pounds!!!! YAY Me!! Stay safe up there!!!!

    • Catherine says:

      Isn’t it weird how when we get older we refer to “diets” as eating well instead? LOL. I don’t have a scale so for now I have to judge by my clothing! Congrats on the 6.50 weight loss..that’s great!!!!!!!!! XOXOXO!!!

  2. Let me go and look for this Paleo Bible. Great post 😄

    • Catherine says:

      Thanks-glad you enjoy the post. I got the Paleo Bible at Barnes and Noble for something like 9 bucks and my membership discount. It’s decent!! XOXOXO!

  3. spearfruit says:

    Good for you – looking wonderful! I have added a couple of pounds since Thanksgiving and need to shed them. Due to what is going on with my health right now, in the coming months I plan to get back to good foods and more exercise. I have become somewhat lazy later – and that is not good. Great post Catherine, thank you for sharing. Have a great weekend! 🙂

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Spear, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that your issue clears itself up very soon and it isn’t anything serious!!! That being said….those weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas are what really did me in. Between the baking and eating and sampling it was just awful. I couldn’t stop shoving shit into my mouth. And the worst thing was that I felt awful but couldn’t stop. Thank God for Oona!! XOXOXO!

      • spearfruit says:

        Thanks Catherine, I appreciate your concern. Yep, I think we all shoved shit into our mouths during the holidays and then pay for it later.

  4. Haylee says:

    Good on you, I wish I could buy willpower! My granddad’s diet is very similar to Paleo without realising it. He had to alter due to sudden allergies he developed to wheat, dairy, eggs, soy and nuts. He’s pretty much allowed chicken, fish and veg! But he has rice milk as a dairy alternative and using everything together has completely reversed his diabetes. He was never overweight but he did love his sweets and biscuits. It was very hard for him at first but now he says he doesn’t miss any of it at all. Well, maybe chocolate!

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Haylee,

      It’s funny because even though today is very hard with the snow STILL falling and no end in sight, I could really just pig out all day! But other than that, I’m really surprised that I”m not craving the sweets at all. Bonaparte has finished off one of the pound cakes so I’m very happy about that! He never gains weight. ARRRRGHHHH!! I’m really glad though that your grandfather has gotten a lot healthier without really realizing it! XOXOXO!

      • Haylee says:

        Thank you 🙂 Hope you all stay safe in the storm. I’ve been watching on TV and Twitter and as much as I love snow it’s looking pretty dire for you all 😕 Don’t give in though, even if technically, you should be storing fat in case you get snowed in for a long period! 😉

  5. Bernadette says:

    You look fab – today is tough to stay on a diet with the snow fall.

    • Catherine says:

      Thanks Bernadette! It IS tough to stay on this diet today. I’m dying to dip a bunch of biscotti into my tea and I’m craving pasta..but I will be good because summer is calling! XOXOXO!

  6. Judy says:

    What an inspiring post Catherine, thank you. I really need to get started on this, I just need the will power to keep it going when others in the house are eating cake and brownies, three cheese sauce and pasta, roast potatoes….you know the pitfalls. I am going to order the Paleo Bible and that will also help,
    Stay safe in the snow, everyone. Here in the UK we’re having a bit of a winter “heatwave” this weekend, very bizarre.

    • Catherine says:

      Thanks Judy! The Paleo Bible is from Barnes & Noble. It really has some good stuff in it. Hey–this is why I’m somewhat glad that the kids are on their own. Trust me, if they were home, it would be like a bakery in here..and I would be sampling like a madwoman! I’m still amazed that I have a pantry full of baking ingredients including chocolate in all forms and I haven’t touched anything! My tea has been my best friend! XOXOXO!

  7. Margaret says:

    You look great, wish I had your willpower! Love your sense of humor about our “natural gas” solution, so funny!! I never heard of a blobfish so thanks for mentioning that, although it is a bit scary looking – reminds me of a cartoon character from years ago (can’t remember the name). Your gnocchi plate looks nice enough to serve in a restaurant, well done!! Ugh, it’s still snowing and windy here 1 hour north of NYC. Hope everyone stays safe and warm tonight.

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Margaret. I’m hoping you survived snowmageddon. The sun is shining today and we had a bitch of a time digging the car out. Bonaparte didn’t even attempt to dig his car out. Politicians won’t address our gas issue so it’s up to me to bring the true facts. We all should pool our natural gasses together. Nyah ha ha!!! Off to do some cooking! XOXOXO!

  8. Leslie Preston says:

    You are doing so well, especially with baking sweets for Bonaparte! I just finished eating two ginger cookies that were in the freezer. There’s a bag of them that I made and had leftover from the holidays. I should throw them out, but I won’t. That said, when I’m serious about losing weight, I’ve always had great luck with a low-carb diet. I feel so much better, that it’s almost worth it just for that. Keep up the good work! Your trip this summer is around the corner, and you’re gonna look great!!!!

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Leslie. LOL–I’m the same way. I have a ton of biscotti left over from Christmas but I refuse to trash them. I put too much time and effort into making them. The good thing is that the biscotti won’t go stale so they are wrapped, packed and and some in the freezer and some on the highest shelf in one of the kitchen cabinets! I would love to have one or seven with my coffee or tea but I’ll be good. I keep thinking about that trip……

  9. Miss Bougie says:

    You are so very brave to go on a diet in this kind of weather. I have to get into the swing too, but as I still have both kids at home and a sweet-toothed hubby, it’s very difficult for me. 🙁 But as you say, summer is calling; I need to stick a note on my refrigerator door.
    One question. In American recipes the expression “kosher salt” always comes up. What is that, compared to “salt”. I’m used to “sel” and “fleur de sel” Curious mind wants to know.

    • Catherine says:

      I have to really change up the way I eat. It’s so disgusting. I’m willing to go the long-haul on this because I simply want to be healthier! Even with Bonaparte, who loves his native dishes–but never gains an ounce. I don’t mind cooking for him at all. I’m just jealous that he can eat all the bread, cheese..etc. and never gain weight!
      As far as kosher salt goes, it’s just a more coarse type of salt. I found the following description on the net: Kosher salt and flakier, more delicate salts that melt nicely on the tongue, tend to be used as finishing salts, adding the last crunchy, salty touch to a dish. Table salt is used more for seasoning a dish while still in process.
      I like the coarse salt a lot–but these days I’m using less of it! XOXOXO!

  10. LosiLosLoco says:

    Good on ya Catherine! It’s amazing how well you’ve been doing! Down to a size 8? Hell yes! Celebrate on progress 😀 Although it doesn’t really snow where I live, I feel your pain in wanting some comfort food like that to accompany the day. Mhh. But it’s OK. Life goes on. Once you have your whole nutritional lifestyle balanced and figured out, you can sneak in those sweets! They always taste better in moderation anyway… 😉

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