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Signature Recipes

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I don’t recall how this tradition started, but at some point after we arrived to the United States, my grandmother Fira started baking a Russian cake called “Annushka” once a year for my birthday. She’s had the recipe for this honey-based cake in her recipe notebook for at least 40 years. Maybe she made it once, and I loved it, so she started baking it for me. I loved this tradition.

My favorite cake stopped being a part of my birthday celebrations once I adopted the Paleo lifestyle about 8 years ago (all of that flour, sugar, honey, and condensed milk!) Honestly, I didn’t really miss it because I only baked Paleo treats once in a while.

Since I adopted the Keto / Low Carb High Fat (LCHF) lifestyle about a year and a half ago, I’ve been having a lot of fun modifying old family recipes. Keto / LCHF allows dairy, if you aren’t sensitive to it, so it’s a lot easier to modify recipes that call for butter, sour cream, etc., which this recipe does. I am actually sensitive to dairy, so I still rarely make dairy-based desserts. They’re mostly for my husband who handles dairy fairly well.

Annushka Russian Cake Recipe Notebook
“Annushka” cake recipe in my grandma’s 40-year-old recipe notebook

This year for my birthday, I thought it would be a great idea to bake this Russian cake for me and then share it with those who would appreciate all of the effort, trial and error, and creativity that it takes to modify a recipe. It’s a lot of work to make it gluten-free, grain-free, sugar-free, and have it taste so much like the original! And on top of it, I get to share this recipe with all of you! A win-win all the way around 🙂

It was hilarious and frustrating, I must admit, when I first tried to modify this cake earlier this year. I visited my grandma to bake it with her. I brought all of my substitute ingredients: almond flour, coconut milk, low-carb sweetener, etc. The recipe in her notebook doesn’t have all of the details, of course, such as at what temperature to bake the cake layers. It also lists Soviet measurements such as “one package of butter.”

Me: “Grandma, how much was one package of butter in the Soviet Union?”
Grandma Fira: “Do you think I remember??!! I’ve lived in the U.S. for 30 years now!”
Me: “Well, approximately?”
Grandma Fira (after showing me in the air with her fingers): “About this much, I think. I don’t remember!!!”
Me: “But you baked this cake last about 7 years ago. How much did you use then?”
Grandma Fira (clearly frustrated): “I’m going to turn 90 years old this year; I don’t remember!!!”

Discussing Annushka Russian cake recipe with my grandmother
My grandma Fira teaching me how to make Russian cake “Annushka”

She actually has pretty good memory, but maybe not when it comes to baking cakes 🙂 So, here I was trying to convert from grams to ounces and American-sized cup measurements and Googling the typical temperature at which one would bake cake layers. I’m still amazed at what it takes to modify a 40-year-old Soviet recipe to be a healthy, modern-day awesomeness. Oh, yeah, the recipe also calls for margarine in the cake batter, which just like in the U.S., was considered “healthier” back in the day. Needless to say, I’m using grass-fed butter instead.

This “Annushka” Russian cake is very typical of Russian cakes (tortes). It’s a layered cake with a Russian-style frosting made from butter, sugar, and nuts. The flour, sugar, honey, and condensed milk were substituted, of course. Ahhh, this cake is soooo good…quick and easy to make, too…why wouldn’t folks just bake low-carb desserts??!! The longest part is making a coconut-milk-based condensed milk using a low-carb sweetener, which can be made ahead. And that takes only 15 minutes!

“Annushka” in the Russian language is a diminutive of “Anna,” so it’s an endearing nickname for Anna, for those who are curious. I’m so glad that this cake can once again be part of my annual celebration!!! Enjoy 🙂

Annushka Russian Cake Slice
I can have my favorite cake for breakfast guilt-free!

Ingredients

For the homemade coconut-milk-based condensed milk:

1 (13.5 oz.) can of full-fat, unsweetened coconut milk (I use Native Forest brand, which typically has the cream and liquid already separated in the can when you open it, without requiring refrigeration)
2 tablespoons low-carb sweetener (I use Lakanto® Classic White or Golden Monk Fruit Sweetener, which is available on Amazon.com)

For the cake:

1 stick butter, softened (preferably grass-fed or French)
2 eggs, preferably pastured (I use pastured eggs from Vital Farms, which are available at most grocery stores in our area)
1/4 cup full-fat sour cream, preferably pasture-raised (I use Organic Valley sour cream from pastured cows)
3 tablespoons honey-flavored low-carb sweetener (I use All-u-Lose® Natural Honey Flavor Sweetener, which is available on Amazon.com)
1 cup blanched almond flour
3 tablespoons low-carb sweetener (I use Lakanto® Classic White or Golden Monk Fruit Sweetener, which is available on Amazon.com)
1 teaspoon baking soda

For the frosting:

3/4 cup homemade coconut-milk-based condensed milk
2 1/4 cup (200 grams) walnuts, chopped
1 stick butter, softened (preferably grass-fed or French)

Directions

For the homemade coconut-milk-based condensed milk:

  1. Separate the cream part of the coconut milk from the liquid part. Discard the liquid or save for other uses.
  2. In a small pot, bring the coconut cream to a gentle boil over medium heat, whisking occasionally to prevent it from burning.
  3. Whisk in the sweetener.
  4. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the coconut milk is reduced to about 3/4 cup.
  5. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl. Let it cool completely.

For the cake:

  1. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350° F.
  2. In a large bowl, mix softened butter, eggs, sour cream, low-carb sweetener, and honey-flavored low-carb sweetener until a smooth consistency.
  3. Mix in almond flour and baking soda until well combined.
  4. Lightly grease two 9-inch by 9-inch round cake pans with butter.
  5. Divide the cake batter evenly between the two cake pans.
  6. Place both cake pans in the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the cakes are golden brown. Ovens vary, so start checking for doneness at around 12 minutes. Insert a toothpick into the cake — it should come out clean.
  7. Remove the cake pans from the oven, place on a wire rack, and let cool completely.
  8. Remove the cake layers from the pans once cooled.

For the frosting:

  1. While the cake is baking, make the frosting.
  2. In a bowl, mix softened butter and homemade coconut-milk-based condensed milk until a smooth consistency.
  3. Mix in the chopped walnuts with a spatula or a spoon.
  4. To assemble the cake, spread the frosting on top of the first cake layer.
  5. Place the second cake layer on top of the first.
  6. Spread the frosting on top of the second cake layer.
  7. Spread any leftover frosting on the sides of the cake.
  8. To make a 4-layered cake, double the recipe.
  9. Cut into cake slices and serve, or refrigerate in an enclosed container. Let the cake come to room temperature before serving.

TIP:
Natural low-carb sweeteners vary. If you use a different sweetener, you may need to adjust the quantity depending on your sweetness preference.

VARIATION:
To make this cake dairy-free, you could try using coconut milk yogurt instead of sour cream and coconut oil + palm oil shortening instead of butter. If you do, let me know how it turns out in the comments below 🙂

Looking for more Russian recipes? Check out From Russia With Love. Love guilt-free desserts? Find more here.

This fish hash recipe was one of those accidentally-discovered dishes when one of the ingredients doesn’t turn out quite right, but with a plan B, the dish turns into something quite amazing. I love accidentally discovering great recipes that turn into signature dishes and sharing them with you. What I love about this fish hash recipe is that it’s quick, easy, delicious, satisfying, and packed with flavor. It is also sugar-free, dairy-free, lectin-free, low-carb, Keto, and Paleo!

What’s very convenient about a flaky white fish, such as wild-caught cod, is you can buy it frozen, then bake it without thawing. You may, of course, thaw your fish first or buy fresh fillets. This recipe works well in all of those scenarios. For us busy foodies, we often stock up on frozen cod fillets for easy, longer-term storage, then pop them in the oven last minute to make a quick dinner.

In the past, we would just sprinkle the fish with salt and pepper, top it with butter or drizzle with olive oil once it was cooked, squeeze lemon juice over it, and serve with a salad or veggies. Simple enough. Then Joel started complaining.

He likes variety more than I do, so his complaint was that eating fish this way got “too boring.” Then one evening, I felt like having fish and decided to bake the frozen cod fillets. I had Joel’s complaint in the back of my mind as I was preparing the dinner. Then a funny (and serendipitous) thing happened — the fish got too flaky. It was literally falling apart on the baking sheet. I may have forgotten to grease the baking sheet. Oops.

Fish Hash Recipe

Hmm, what do I do now? Plan B! We were on a fried-onions-in-butter kick, so I had the idea to sauté some onions, fry a couple slices of bacon, and mix the fish in to make it into a fish hash! I love hash, so why not with fish? A simple Romaine lettuce salad on the side. Boom! Easy dinner. Plus, Joel gets to eat his fish in a new way.

The smokiness and crunchiness of bacon, the sweetness of cooked onions, the delicateness of the fish…this is probably my favorite way to eat cod or tilapia. Top the fish hash leftovers with an egg the next morning, and it’s breakfast! We now make this fish hash recipe quite often. Enjoy!

Ingredients

12 oz. wild-caught cod, or any flaky white fish, frozen, thawed, or fresh
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2-3 slices bacon (I like Niman Ranch No-Sugar Applewood Smoked Bacon)
1/2 teaspoon garlic power
1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
Salt to taste (I use Himalayan pink salt for its mineral content)
Flat-leaf Italian parsley, minced (optional)

Directions

  1. Grease a rimmed baking sheet with avocado oil or grass-fed butter. Season the fish with salt on both sides and place on the baking sheet.
  2. If using fresh fish fillets, pre-heat the oven to 400° F. Depending on the thickness of the fillets, bake for 9-12 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily with a fork, and the center is no longer translucent.
  3. If using frozen or thawed fish fillets, bake according to the instructions on the package and until the fish flakes easily, and the center is no longer translucent.
  4. While the fish is baking, fry the bacon slices in a large sauté or cast iron pan over medium heat until crispy or to desired doneness. Remove the bacon and allow to cool.
  5. Cook the chopped onion in the bacon fat until golden-brown, stirring occasionally, about 7-10 minutes, adding more cooking fat, if needed. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic powder and mix well. Remove from heat if done before the fish.
  6. Cut the cooled slices of bacon into small pieces.
  7. Once the fish is baked, break it into bite-sized pieces with a fork and add to the onion in the pan. Add the chopped bacon, mix well, and allow everything to heat through.
  8. Adjust the seasonings as desired. Sprinkle with minced parsley, if desired, and serve warm.

When you use the fish hash leftovers for breakfast, it’s very similar in texture to a typical hash loaded with potatoes, but without all of the carbs!

TIP:
What helps to make this fish hash recipe even quicker is cooking things in parallel — frying the bacon while the oven is heating, cooking the onions while the fish is baking — you get the point. I also like to use a broiler pan instead of a rimmed baking sheet when baking frozen fish to allow the juices to drip into the bottom tray.

VARIATION:
Feel free to omit the bacon, but it gives this dish a very nice, smoky flavor and crunchy consistency.

Looking for more quick and easy seafood recipes? Check out my Buttered Seafood Shirataki Noodles with Baby Greens. This recipe is so quick and easy, you can make it for lunch!

I woke up early this morning and told my husband, “It’s National Coffee Cake Day!” He got a giant grin on his face and said, “Does this mean you’re going to bake coffee cake?!” I said, “No, it means I finally want to post grandma Helen’s sour cream coffee cake recipe on my blog.” He said, “You can’t tell me it’s National Coffee Cake Day and not bake the coffee cake. It’s like telling a kid it’s National Candy Day and giving him carrots.”

Well, it’s lightly snowing outside (a perfect day for baking a coffee cake!); it is National Coffee Cake Day; this recipe is so easy to throw together; and hopefully, I can finish writing this blog post by the time the coffee cake is done. It’s starting to smell so good in here!

Years ago, in my pre-Paleo and pre-Keto days, we visited Joel’s grandparents in Kansas. This was the first and only time I met grandma Helen. She was a mighty fine lady who lived a full, exciting life with Joel’s grandpa, filled with lots of travels and love for each other. Sadly, she developed Alzheimer’s disease by the time I met her, which scientists now call “Type 3 diabetes.”

LowSour Cream Coffee Cake

At some point during our visit, I asked to look at her recipe notebook and jotted down a few recipes I liked. One of them was her sour cream coffee cake recipe. Funny thing is I never baked it before I adopted the Paleo lifestyle. Then I also learned that Joel absolutely loves coffee cake, so one Christmas morning I tried modifying the recipe for the Paleo diet. I must say that it didn’t turn out too well due to the ingredient substitutions that I was playing around with at the time. It was too dry and had the consistency of a brick, but we ate it all anyway because it was a rare treat for us to have a baked good.

So, the recipe went back into a pile of recipes until a couple of months ago. I’ve been following a Keto / low-carb Paleo lifestyle for a year and a half now, and Keto allows the use of dairy and natural low-carb sweeteners that are 1:1 substitution for regular table sugar, so I’ve been baking a lot this past winter 🙂 That’s when I came across grandma Helen’s sour cream coffee cake recipe in my pile of recipes.

You know how they say that timing is everything in life? This was one of those moments. I realized that I only have to substitute 3 ingredients this time around, and one of those ingredients is simply the type of oil to use. I would have to play with the quantity of these ingredients and the baking time and temperature, but that’s the fun part! I replaced flour, sugar, and corn oil with healthier ingredients. Modifying grandma’s coffee cake recipe to be grain-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, lectin-free, low-carb, and Keto-friendly was quite satisfying.

Grain Free Sour Cream Coffee Cake

But the best part was people tasting it and asking for the recipe. You know you’re on to something when you bring it to share with others, and people seek you out to ask if you’d be willing to share the recipe. That, plus seeing the kids sneak a piece (or two!) extra. So, after numerous modifications, adjustments, and tests (my husband wasn’t complaining!), grandma Helen’s modified sour cream coffee cake recipe is ready for prime time!

Ingredients

For the dough:

2 eggs, preferably pastured (I use pastured eggs from Vital Farms, which are available at most grocery stores in our area)
1/4 cup avocado oil
1 cup sour cream, preferably pasture-raised
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (I use Simply Organic® no-sugar-added Madagascar Pure Vanilla Extract)
2 cups blanched almond flour
1/3 cup low-carb sweetener of your choice (I use Lakanto® Monk Fruit Sweetener, which is available on Amazon.com)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt (I use Himalayan pink salt for its mineral content)

For the topping:

1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
2 teaspoons cinnamon (I use Spicely® Organics True Cinnamon)
2 tablespoons low-carb sweetener of your choice (I use Lakanto® Monk Fruit Sweetener, which is available on Amazon.com)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 325° F.
  2. In a large bowl, mix eggs, avocado oil, sour cream, sweetener, and vanilla extract until well combined.
  3. Mix in almond flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt until well combined.
  4. In a small bowl, mix chopped walnuts, cinnamon, and sweetener.
  5. Grease an 8-inch by 8-inch or similar-sized baking dish with avocado oil. Pour half of the dough mixture into the baking dish. Sprinkle half of the topping mixture on top of the dough mixture.
  6. Pour the second half of the dough mixture into the baking dish. Sprinkle the second half of the topping mixture on top of the dough mixture.
  7. Bake for about 45-50 minutes. Ovens vary, so start checking for doneness at around 45 minutes. Insert a toothpick into the cake — it should come out clean.

Sugar Free Sour Cream Coffee Cake

I didn’t get a chance to finish writing this post before the coffee cake was done. You want to eat it warm, right? Plus, Joel was giving me a puppy face 🙂 We sat down to have a slice or two for breakfast and talked about grandma Helen’s and grandpa Dena’s life and the love they shared. I am grateful I got a chance to meet her and write down this recipe before she passed away. I am grateful for the knowledge of and access to healthier ingredients that allow us to enjoy her legacy guilt-free.

Try this sour cream coffee cake with some grass-fed butter on top. Let me know how you like grandma Helen’s sour cream coffee cake recipe in the comments below. Enjoy!

TIP:
If it isn’t sweet enough for you, use 1/2 cup of Lakanto® Monk Fruit Sweetener. If you use a different natural low-carb sweetener, you may need to adjust the quantity depending on your sweetness preference.

VARIATION:
Don’t like nuts, or they don’t like you? Omit them!

Looking for more breakfast recipes? Check out my pancakes recipe. We finally figured out the best pancakes that are grain-free, sugar-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, lectin-free, low-carb, Keto, and Paleo!

My buttered seafood shirataki noodles recipe has got to be the fastest homemade low-carb dinner you can make on a busy weeknight. You can even make it for lunch if you work from home or happen to spend your lunchtime at home.

This recipe is grain-free, gluten-free, lectin-free, sugar-free, Keto, Paleo, and can be dairy-free if you use avocado oil instead of butter. In other words, it’s guilt-free!

In my pre-Paleo and pre-Keto days, I actually owned a cookbook titled I Could Eat Pasta Every Night. It’s too funny to think about it now. Yes, I was a self-described “carb junkie” (read my story). Yes, pasta was my favorite meal. In fact, Seafood Fettuccini Alfredo was probably my favorite dish. I didn’t eat it very often because it was known as a “heart attack on a plate,” but boy, did I love it.

Creamy, fatty, saucy carbs! I know now that creamy and fatty is completely fine, but not carby, especially when combined with fatty. 🙂 I donated that cookbook years ago because I didn’t know that shirataki noodles existed. Now I think I should have kept it and used it to modify those pasta recipes to be low-carb!

I first found out about shirataki noodles from my sister. She and my brother-in-law love Japan and have visited it quite often. Shirataki are translucent Japanese noodles made from the konjac tuber plant native to eastern Asia. The konjac tuber has almost no calories and almost no carbohydrates, but is very high in fiber. No wonder they call shirataki noodles “miracle noodles!” There is even a brand called Miracle Noodle®. You can find these noodles at natural food stores, Asian grocery stores, and online.

Plus, all you have to do with shirataki noodles is rinse them, warm them up, and dry in a pan, or skip drying in a pan if you’re in a hurry. It only takes minutes!

Low-Carb Shirataki Noodles in a Pan

Now I can have my “pasta” and eat it, too! Buttery seafood noodles on a rainy or snowy night are especially satisfying to me. Make this Mediterranean-inspired dish fancier by garnishing with flat-leaf Italian parsley, sprinkling with fresh or dried chives, or topping with goat cheese crumbles, if you’re not dairy-sensitive.

To make this a quick and easy dish, I use canned, smoked seafood. My favorite is smoked baby clams in olive oil, but you can also make it with smoked oysters in olive oil.

Shirataki Noodles with Smoked Oysters

Serves 2

Ingredients

2 packages shirataki noodles (I use Miracle Noodle® Angel Hair or House Foods brands)
2 packages smoked baby clams in pure olive oil (I use Crown Prince Natural brand)
2 tablespoons grass-fed butter, or cooking fat of choice such as ghee or avocado oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups baby greens (I like a blend of spinach and arugula)
1/4 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste (I use Himalayan pink salt for its mineral content)
1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper or freshly-ground black pepper, or to taste
Flat-leaf Italian parsley or chives (fresh or dried) for garnish, (optional)

Directions

  1. Prepare shirataki noodles according to package instructions: Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, rinse the noodles in cool water for 15 seconds. Place the noodles in the boiling water for 2 minutes. Dry the noodles in a non-oiled pan over medium heat stirring occasionally until the water evaporates.
  2. Remove noodles from the pan and place in a bowl.
  3. Melt butter in a frying pan over medium-high heat.
  4. Add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds.
  5. Add baby greens and sauté for 1 minute stirring occasionally.
  6. Add noodles, salt, and white pepper. Sauté for about 1 minute stirring occasionally or until the noodles are warmed through.
  7. Add smoked baby clams. Gently toss everything together.
  8. Garnish with flat-leaf Italian parsley or chives, if desired.
  9. Serve immediately.

TIP:
To make this seafood shirataki noodles recipe even faster, skip drying the noodles in a non-oiled pan (as described in step 1 and 2 above). Your dish will be a bit more soupy and saucy, if you prefer it that way.

VARIATIONS:
This dish also goes well with smoked oysters in olive oil instead of baby clams. I use Crown Prince Natural brand because it’s the only brand I was able to find that uses olive oil instead of highly-inflammatory industrial “vegetable” oils. Not a big fan of smoked seafood? You may also use canned baby clams or precooked shrimp. Not in a hurry? Cook up some fresh seafood to serve with the noodles!

Low Carb Shirataki Noodles with Shrimp

Now I should create a low-carb shirataki Fettuccini Alfredo recipe 😉

Looking for additional quick and easy seafood recipes? Check out my Fish Hash recipe.

This is the best homemade chicken broth / soup recipe from my grandma, which I adjusted slightly after living in St. Maarten. Chicken soups I had in the Caribbean were by far the most delicious and hearty. This recipe is the low-carb, gluten-free version.

My grandma’s and Caribbean-style special tricks make this a staple in our house. Whenever it’s cold outside, or I’m feeling sick, or I want something heart-warming, I make this recipe. I’ve also made it and brought it over to friends and family to help them get better 🙂

Homemade Chicken Broth Recipe

This homemade chicken broth recipe is super easy to make. If you need broth for any other recipes, strain when done and voila! The beauty of making the broth this way is you can serve it over whatever veggies you want, or not. Pour over spinach or baby greens and canned artichoke hearts to add wilted greens and veggies to your soup. Top with avocado, if you’d like, and/or fresh herbs such as cilantro or flat-leaf Italian parsley.

If I only have baby carrots and red onions on hand, that works, too, as you can see in my photo. Enjoy and let me know how you like it!

Chicken Broth Ingredients

Ingredients

4 whole skin-on chicken legs (or an equivalent amount of chicken drumsticks and/or thighs)
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into 2-3 pieces
2 celery stalks, cut into 2-3 pieces each
1 yellow onion, peeled and ends trimmed
6 fresh thyme sprigs (or more to taste)
Sea salt to taste (I use Himalayan pink salt)
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Place all ingredients into a large soup pot. Don’t cut the onion; leave it whole, peeled, and uncut.
  2. Pour enough filtered water into the pot to cover all ingredients.
  3. Bring everything to a boil, then reduce heat to a low simmer.
  4. Simmer for 40 minutes.
  5. Adjust seasonings, if needed.

This homemade chicken broth recipe is featured on Connie Bennett’s blog. Connie, the Cravings NinjaTM and 1 New Thing a DayTM Founder, is the bestselling author of Sugar Shock and Beyond Sugar Shock.

I also developed my homemade bone broth recipe from grass-fed beef marrow bones that is based on my grandma’s chicken broth recipe. Check it out!

Have you heard of liquid gold? That’s what they call bone broth! Some claim that it is a nutritional powerhouse with many health benefits:

  • Rich in protein
  • Rich in gelatin
  • A source of minerals

Apparently, bone broth helps with joint, skin, and digestive health; helps to mitigate the side effects of colds and flu; and supports your body’s detoxification process.

So, bone broth is delicious, nutrient-rich, super good for you, and can be served in a variety of ways. What’s not to like?

I’ve tried a few varieties of store-bought bone broth, and frankly, I’m not impressed. My homemade bone broth from grass-fed beef marrow bones is way better, but then again, I’m biased.

Not only that, but it’s so easy to throw together — 5 ingredients plus water and seasonings — that I make it all the time.

Bone Broth from Grass-fed Beef Marrow Bones

This bone broth recipe is based on my grandma’s chicken soup recipe. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Ingredients

About 3 lbs. of grass-fed beef bones (preferably with marrow in them)
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into 2-3 pieces
2 celery stalks, cut into 2-3 pieces each
1 yellow onion, peeled
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (I use Bragg® Organic, Raw, Unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and freshly-ground black pepper to taste (I use Himalayan pink salt)

Directions

  1. Place bones, carrot, celery, and onion into a large soup pot. Don’t cut the onion; leave it whole, peeled, and uncut.
  2. Pour enough filtered water into the pot to cover all ingredients.
  3. Pour apple cider vinegar into the pot.
  4. Add garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  5. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a low simmer.
  6. Simmer for 24 hours (walk away and leave it alone, seriously!)

Yep, that’s how quick and easy it is to make your own bone broth. It takes a while to cook, but the end result is rich, satisfying, and oh, so worth it. Enjoy!

I was born and raised in the former Soviet Union. We ate foods like homemade liver pâté, meat aspic made from pigs feet (called kholodets in Russian), caviar, and others uncommon foods as far as American palates go.

When you grow up with these foods, they are delicious and normal to you. Everyone in my family loves liver. My 20-months-old niece loves our homemade liver pâté!

Liver is also one of nature’s most potent superfoods, so we try to eat it every other week. Typically, I make it as a pâté, but one day I thought of adding liver instead of day-old bread soaked in milk to a traditional Russian cutlet recipe. It turned out so well (and so easy to make!) that we started making this dish quite often. It is now one of my signature recipes 🙂

I realize, however, that not everyone loves liver. So, if you’re not a big fan of beef liver, but would like to add organ meats into your diet, you might want to give this recipe a try. The beef masks the taste of liver to some degree.

These Russian-style beef cutlets with liver are tender, moist, and delicious. Be adventurous and let me know how you like them!

Ingredients

1 lb. ground beef, preferably 80% or 85% grass-fed (or elk, or bison)
1 lb. beef liver, preferably grass-fed
1 yellow onion
1 egg, preferably pastured (I use pastured eggs from Vital Farms, which are available at most grocery stores in our area)
Cooking fat of choice (beef tallow, butter, or coconut oil)
Salt and freshly-ground black pepper to taste (I use Himalayan pink salt for its mineral content)
Garlic powder to taste (optional)

Directions

  1. Chop the onion by hand or in a food processor. Place in a bowl.
  2. Place the liver and egg into a food processor. Mix for about 10 seconds, or until well combined, and the mixture is smooth without any chucks.
  3. Add the ground beef, salt, pepper, and garlic powder, if desired, to the liver and egg mixture, and mix in the food processor for about 10 seconds, or until well combined.
  4. Transfer the beef and liver mixture to the bowl with the onions and mix until combined.
  5. Heat a frying pan on medium-high. When the pan is hot, add cooking fat of choice (I use EPIC or Fatworks grass-fed beef tallow).
  6. Cook in batches — brown on one side for about 3 minutes, then flip over and brown on the other side for about 3 minutes or until cooked through.

Enjoy!