Out on an early morning hike in the foothills of Phoenix, Arizona.
“But I’m Italian…this paleo thing will kill me!”
My hubby swears that’s what I said when he first suggested we give the paleo diet a try in early 2013.
I’m sure those weren’t my exact words.
But I do remember not being all that thrilled about giving up my breads and pastas to eat like a what, a caveman? Seriously?
Eventually, I came around. In fact, the more I learned the more excited I got about ditching the processed junk and fully committing to eating healthy, real food.
My biggest fear starting the paleo diet? Lunch!
I pictured noon rolling around without a slice of bread to make a simple sandwich.
Panic would surely ensue on a daily basis. What was I going to do?
Well the things I did to wiggle around the lunch “challenge” when I first switched to paleo are pretty funny – but I’ll save that for another post.
The point is, I not only survived when I first started the paleo diet, I thrived.
Back then I had some digestive issues, and they quickly disappeared eating paleo. Allergies too – reactions became few and far between. Overall I felt good, really good. More energy. Better sleep. This paleo thing was working for me.
I know how fortunate I am. I didn’t come to paleo desperate to lose weight or get relief from something like Crohn’s or celiac disease. Many people do look to paleo for help with far more serious problems than an occasional upset tummy and the sniffles. If you’re one of those, God bless you. I really believe eating paleo can help you – a lot of people have told me it’s done wonders for them.
So when I first took up paleo years ago my motivation was simple – live a healthier lifestyle and try to figure out some decent paleo meals to cook. Nothing earth-shaking about that.
So the man who suggested we try paleo suddenly has another brilliant idea: I should start a blog!
Well natch, isn’t that what everyone does in the digital age? Thanks for that hubby. There was only one little problem…I didn’t have anything really exciting to share with the world.
Except, maybe…paleo recipes.
The blog’s first logo. The hairy little guy was as clueless as I was when I first switched to paleo.
I had searched paleo sites at the time looking for simple recipes. I found some that were pretty good, but I almost always changed them up – something I had always done with non-paleo recipes in the past.
Maybe I was too picky – or just like all of you, wanted recipes with the flavors and textures I was used to. Old favorites made paleo-syle!
So I decided, why not just create my own paleo recipes?
But they had to be simple. The bacon this paleo girl brought home was a paycheck from a medical job, so I didn’t want paleo cooking to take up too much of my exercise and relaxation time.
I started out with meals I already knew how to cook, and worked at turning those paleo.
When your repertoire is mainly Italian dishes, that’s no easy trick.
Early food photography: We thought a point-n-shoot camera, a bright desk lamp, and of course a daffodil, was about all you needed to take good pictures. Fortunately, we got a little better.
In fact this paleo lasagna is one of those that turned out to be pretty good.
I should state for the record I’m not a classically-trained chef or anything close to it. Just an amateur cook and a professional mom who knows her way around a kitchen thanks to tons of experience feeding a family of four. I know a lot of you can relate to that.
Cooking has always been a passion, and I guess I’ve gotten pretty good at it over the years. But, I’m not expecting it to win any James Beard awards. Just the appreciation of my family and friends (and now my new paleo pals) has always been reward enough for me.
So anyway, after a couple of months of paleo, I officially took the plunge into the online world – newly christened as Paleo Newbie.
Three years and hundreds of paleo recipes later, I’m still “Paleo Newbie”
My hubby did warn me I’d quickly outgrow my blog’s name. Why not, he asked when first setting up a little 3-page website for me, something more aspirational, motivating, memorable — a blog title that would cut through the online clutter with its creativity and cleverness.
So yeah, I just stuck with plain old Paleo Newbie.
It was perfect when I first started paleo, and I’m sticking by it now.
Sure I know a heck of a lot more today, thanks to absorbing good stuff from the leading paleo gurus like Robb Wolf, Chris Kresser and my primal friend Mark Sisson.
But the way I see it, there’s always something new to learn about paleo. I could tell you stuff about resistant starches that would bore you more than this About Me section.
Starting a new recipe, before things get messy. My advice: never wear white while cooking.
But the main reason the Paleo Newbie name still works today, is it draws in the paleo neophytes I know need the most help.
I’m sure there are newcomers just as panicked over lunch as I was – along with lots of other things.
I’m committed to helping them and everyone who needs it, especially in the kitchen.
Hopefully my simple and flavorful paleo recipes will make it a little easier for some people to transition to the paleo diet and stick with it for the long haul.
A little help and inspiration with some tasty paleo meals is what I needed most when I first started, so that’s what I’ll continue to dish out in heaping helpings today.
So that’s a little about me and my paleo story. (More than you ever wanted to know I’m sure!)
Don’t worry, my paleo recipes are much shorter and a lot easier to digest.
And if anyone has read this far other than my mother, I hope you got something valuable out of my ramblings.
Buon appetito and happy paleo cooking,