Carrot Cake Muffins (Paleo, Gluten-Free)

Paleo Carrot Cake Muffins by My Little Jar of Spices

Happy Birthday Blog! One year ago on May 6th, I was having breakfast (Baked eggs in sauteed greens to be precise) in my sunny kitchen in Brazil and said “Screw it. I’m a-starting a food blog man!”. I was terrified to fall flat on my face and have people post awful comments on my page, but I was also feeling so jealous of all the food bloggers I was following. They seemed to be having so much fun. I wanted in on that. I was already cooking so much on a daily basis and wanted to channel that into something that could also involve writing and photography which I also enjoy a lot as hobbies. I of course did not know what managing a food blog actually entailed and had no idea how addictive food blogging was about to become. It really became a true passion and pushed me to improve my cooking skills every day a little more. For the first six months, I was photographing everything I cooked and ate. Even if it looked like meat loaf gone bad. I published recipes three times a week and tracked several times a day how many visitors the blog was getting or how many new facebook likes I could score. I still do that by the way so go like the facebook page here 🙂 Continue reading

Fudgy Chocolate Swirl Banana Bread with Pecan Streusel

Decadent, Fudgy, Chocolate Swirl Banana Bread with Pecan Streusel by My Little Jar of Spices

This bread is AM-AZING, I just couldn’t wait to tell you. Oh-so perfectly moist banana bread with a decadent dark chocolate batter delicately swirled in and a caramelized pecan streusel sprinkled on the top. Oh my, look at that I’ve salivated all over my keyboard. I like long, extravagant recipe titles so this sounds more complicated than it actually is, trust me. The first time I had banana bread when I was a child was when we lived in New York, and my mom bought this divine banana walnut loaf, and I remember thinking that I had never eaten banana that way before but somebody was definitely on to something. Shortly after that, we moved back to France and that put an end to that – in fact we didn’t have oreos, pancakes, muffins, cupcakes, donuts, and lots of other American goods in France in the early 2000s. So nicely sheltered from the mass food industry as we swam in a sea of artisan-made cheese, cured meats and crudités. Anyways, when they started opening Starbucks coffee shops in Paris, I was pretty happy to rediscover banana bread and even set out to learn to make my own recipe. And then I stopped eating gluten. And THAT put an end to that, and a lot of the above-mentioned.

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Pumpkin Scones (grain-free, Paleo)

Pumpkin Scones by My Little Jar of Spices
Everyone’s celebrating Thanksgiving and making pumpkin pie and leftover Turkey sandwiches, getting into the Winter holidays spirit with mulled cider and hot cocoa, baking Christmas cookies and lighting their chimneys…. and I’m sleeping in the starfish position in my bed without the sheets on because it’s getting hotter and hotter around here. Aah yes, Summer is upon us in Brazil. And it just feels awkward when I’m strolling down São Paulo’s big Paulista Avenue with my flip flops and sunglasses on and there’s a gigantic inflated Snowman standing there with a scarf on and Santa Clause’s just cruising along with his reindeer pals. It just feels… wrong. Continue reading

Paleo Morning Porridge

Grain-Free Morning Porridge by My Little Jar of Spices

This is the recipe that I have wanted to post the most on this blog since the beginning because it is truly the first recipe that I appropriated and made my own after I eliminated gluten from my diet. I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to post it. I’ve recommended it to many friends who have asked me advice on what to have for breakfast that was not eggs and bacon on a paleo diet. Since I myself am not much of an eggs and bacon kind of gal, this porridge recipe has been a go-to breakfast for me for the last year. I love oatmeal, especially the way my mom would make it for our lazy Sunday afternoon snacks when I was a kid: with raisins, a dash of cinnamon, and topped with a pat of butter that melts into the cooked oats and some maple syrup. Jeez louise goddammit. Sometimes, just sometimes, I wish I were 13 all over again when I think of those moments. Without the acne and awkward braces that is. Continue reading

Rosemary Pork Chops Braised in Sweet Apple Cabbage Salad

Rosemary Pork Chops Braised in Sweet Apple Cabbage Salad
Yummers. Crusty on the outside, melt-in-your-mouth tender meat on the inside, you can’t go more right with this cooking technique for pork chops. Pair them with this delightful Sweet Apple Cabbage Salad and braise it all in the oven, and you have yourself a very satisfying, healthy and beautiful (don’t forget beautiful!) dinner.

Before I start rambling, don’t forget to go like my Facebook page and stay connected with me on Pinterest if you like the content of this blog and want to receive updates on what’s cooking around here! I have a couple Latino and South American cuisine recipes in the works for the month of November that I think you’ll like! Stay tuned for that. Continue reading

Smokey Chicken and Rainbow Vegetable Saute with Crunchy Almonds

Smokey Chicken, Rainbow Vegetable Saute and Crunchy Almonds

Sometimes, food is like art, and cooking like painting it. Beautiful, colorful, meditative. You assemble your material, take out your cutting board and knife, chop your vegetables one by one in a repeated, patient, practiced gesture, select the spices, herbs and condiments that will allow for the flavors to burst and intertwine. And with perfect synchronicity, you then turn up the heat, drizzle the olive oil, stir in the onions, then the vegetables one by one, let it smoke, sprinkle some salt, crack in some pepper, bring it back to a slow simmer, take a few risks, contemplate with satisfaction as your ingredients sizzle in the hot oil, release their wonderful flavors and come together in the most beautiful of meals. Every time I cook something, I look at it and think it’s the most beautiful thing I’ve made. Until the next meal comes around of course. Continue reading

Veggie Basil Egg Muffins

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For the past two days I’ve been travelling in the Minas Gerais region in the Center-South of Brazil as part of the field research for the paper I am writing on the inclusion of Brazilian smallholders in food chains. Minas Gerais is such a lovely region and it was the third time I was there to interview Brazilian milk producers. Aside for making some of the best cheese and coffee in Brazil, it’s also known for having some very very fine meat, so naturally every time I go to there, I have a grilled meat party going on in my plate. My research is soon coming to an end and I will definitely miss these trips to the field. One of my favorite parts of these trips are the long car drives to reach the farms where I get the occasion to study the Brazilian countryside, its agriculture and the people I see on the side of the road. Minas Gerais has these amazing earth roads that look like canvasses of bright red and orange dust, because the soil is so rich in iron and copper. I always feel much more in touch with the country on these trips than when I’m dragging my little foreign self in the monster that is São Paulo.  Continue reading

Rhubarb Clafoutis (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo)

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I love rhubarb but I’ve never been inspired to do anything with it. Then a few months ago, Jamie Oliver, my beloved, started putting a whole series of mouth-watering rhubarb recipes out on facebook which had me salivating one after the other. Stewed rhubarb with yogurt, rhubarb muffins, rhubarb cocktails, rhubarb with custardeven rhubarb eclairs for the love of god. What a brilliant man.  Always a source of inspiration. In turn, I decided to make my own beautiful rhubarb treat.

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Homemade Gluten-free Granola

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I have had the challenging yet rather successful experience of keeping with gluten-free eating while travelling this month, and one thing’s for sure, ziplock bags have been a blessing. This granola and I have become good friends through long airplane rides, hours on the road and frustrating stops at gas stations. Continue reading

Cherry Red Wine Brownies (with a luscious dark chocolate ganache)

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C’est le temps des cerises…. aaah, as I continue with my lyrical ramblings on the wonder that is France during the Summertime, let me take a moment to talk about cherries. There are cherries EVERYWHERE. Piles and piles of deep bordeaux-colored cherries on every street corner, all delicately laid out in large fruit stands patiently waiting to be taken home by passersby and baked in cherry pies and clafoutis and jams and be worn around the ears of little girls in their little print dresses. Ok so it’s not exactly like that but let’s say that it is because it’s such a nice picture. Anyways, I bought some cherries, and probably more than I needed (2 pounds, to give you the whole story). Continue reading