Post by John Michael
One of the dilemmas that people face when switching to the Paleo diet is an apparent loss of variety in what they can eat. By becoming Paleo, we leave behind a great number of foods that human ingenuity has fashioned from the products of the agricultural revolution; whether it’s the grain-based cereals that we’ve become accustomed to eating in the morning, or the dairy-based desserts that send us off to bed at night, there’s a lot we leave behind. But, in my experience switching to the Paleo Diet, I’ve found that, instead of having my culinary horizons narrowed, this diet has actually revealed to me the great number of foods and flavors that exist outside of the realms of grains, dairy products, and heavily processed foods. These blogs, which will all be entitled Paleo Foods, are an attempt to share the diversity of delightful flavors that can be found within the alimentary domains of fruits, vegetables, meats, and nuts and oils, which together form the basic components of the Paleo Diet.
I recently visited my friend Iris in Córdoba, and, because it had been over two years since we’d seen one another, we decided to have a celebratory dinner in her apartment. We picked up a chicken at the local supermarket, along with several vegetables, but when Iris began to look for dessert, she learned I couldn’t eat most of her selections. “But can’t you eat anything good on this diet?” she asked, somewhat exasperated. “Well,” I replied, amused by her consternation, “every once in a while I can have dark chocolate.” “I think this is one of those times,” Iris told me, and, laughing, I agreed with her, and bought a bar of Cadbury Intense 50% Cacao (not my first choice). But, when we finished our dinner, and I opened my chocolate bar, I found it to be kind of boring, and so, deciding that it needed some spicing up, I had the idea of Paleo petit fours.
I know that petit fours are, according to their strict definition, bite-sized cakes, generally made of flour or marzipan, but when I hear the term “petit four,” I don’t think of cake, but of a sweet, finger-food dessert. It’s in the spirit of this personal definition that I use the term now. Before continuing, I would like to say that, because honey was probably a rarity in the cuisine of our Paleolithic ancestors, and dark chocolate non-existent, it’s important to treat these petit fours as a special-occasions-only food. With that being said, let’s get to the treats.