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Sweet Potato Casserole (and the giveaway winner!!)

Okay, so I’ll start with the giveaway. First of all, thank you so much to everyone who purchased my book and participated in the giveaway!  I cannot express my gratitude enough and I am so excited to get it in your hands. I am so proud of it and hope you love it as much as I do!! Alright, enough gushing and on to the winner…

I am excited to announce that the winner is….Susannah Parker!!!! Congrats Susannah!!! Please email me and we can work out the details. :) 

So on the the next point on business…Thanksgiving and holiday meals. Many people have asked what we would be having for our Turkey Day meal so I wanted to share some of our family favorites…

2013 holiday meal post which includes the sweet potato casserole (it’s just so good it deserved a post by itself!) I’m posting here along with: Turkey, Broccoli Casserole (my favorite), and chocolate bark

2012 holiday post which includes: Bacon Wrapped Sweet Potatoes, Fried Okra, Almond Cranberry Green Beans, Cauliflower Mash, Roasted Brussels Sprout, Biscuits, Sugar Cookies (I actually prefer these Snickerdoodles) and Chocolate Pie (here is the filling recipe)

I hope this can help give some ideas for the upcoming holidays. Have a fun, safe, and relaxing Thanksgiving!! And please know how thankful for you. Now go eat and enjoy!!!

sweet pot cas

 
Sweet Potato Casserole (Paleo)
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Ingredients
  1. Filling
  2. 4 large sweet potatoes (or pre-cut bag from Trader Joe’s 2 lbs)
  3. 1/2 cup canned coconut milk
  4. 3 tbsp maple syrup
  5. 1 tsp cinnamon
  6. 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  7. 1/2 tsp sea salt
  8. 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  9. 1/4 cup grass fed butter or ghee
  10. 1 organic egg
  11. Topping
  12. 1 cup raw pecans, chopped
  13. 1/3 cup almond meal or flour
  14. 1 tsp cinnamon
  15. 2 tbsp maple syrup
  16. 1 tbsp butter, melted
  17. 1/2 tsp vanilla
  18. 1/2 tsp celtic salt
  19. 1 tbsp coconut palm sugar (for the top)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Start with your sweet potatoes. Of course I bought pre-pealed pre-cut sweet potatoes from Trader Joe’s. You can get them in the freezer section at Whole Foods too. Or you can just use 4 large sweet potatoes, peel and chop them.
  2. Then, boil the sweet potato in a large pot of water for about 10 or so minutes until they are fork tender.
  3. Next put in a food processor with the rest of the “Filling” ingredients and blend until smooth.
  4. Move the pureed sweet potato filling to a 9″ Pyrex glass pie or glass baking dish.
  5. For the topping, mix in a medium bowl all of the ingredients except for the coconut palm sugar. Then spread the “Topping” over the “Filling”.
  6. Dust 1 tbsp of coconut palm sugar evenly over your topping.
  7. Cook on 350 for 20-25 minutes and enjoy!
Stir It Up! http://stiritup.me/

 

Mouthwatering Pea(no)nut Butter Cookies (w/ only 4 ingredients!)…

This past weekend my daughter, some friends and I had a fabulous trip to NYC. Shopping, shows, sightseeing, ice skating…it was amazing. And, the food was, of course, wonderful. I was really surprised, impressed and excited about the many great healthy options. 

There was one restaurant in particular that I fell in love with called Hu Kitchen (Hu, it turns out, stand for “back to Human”).  They had bison meatloaf, kale “Caesar” salad (even with paleo croutons!) coconut milk coffees/hot cocoas, almond flour chicken fingers, an amazing assortment of veggies, chicken salad…I could go on.  As for sweets, they even had paleo blonde brownies, macaroons made with coconut palm sugar, cookies made with coconut nectar. I was in heaven! 

Aside from the amazing menu, notice the signs on the bottom left hand corner of this pictures. I know they are cooking with the ingredients I would cook with, leaving out the oils and preservatives I don’t cook with, and using high quality ingredients that are so loving on our bodies. How great is that? Hu Kitchen, please come to Atlanta…

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Everything they had was amazing! If this were in my backyard, I’m afraid I’d never cook again…

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Banana almond milk smoothie?? Just like we make at home! 

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Think we could get a set up like this at the Race Track gas station around Atlanta or the Atlanta Airport? Can you imagine being able to get chia seed pudding, grass-fed meatballs, or almond crusted chicken fingers to go??

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Another great place we found in NY just down the street from Hu is a place called Brodo (East Village) that sells bone broth (benefits here)! I mean, instead of getting coffee or tea, you could order one of three types of whole-body-nourishing bone broth (great article on Brodo here)!!  It was warm, soothing, and, with so many amazing health benefits, broth just felt good to drink. I would love to see more of those type places around, and I believe were are trending that way.  Things….are….changing. And it’s sooo refreshing and exciting to see. 

stiritup.me

While it’s so nice to see healthier options become more widespread, there still aren’t enough—especially outside of forward-thinking food cities like like NY or LA or Boulder. And when it comes to healthy snacks, options are even more limited.

I cook a decent amount, and, honestly, it’s not for my love of cooking. I cook because I love yummy and healthy treats, snack, and meals that help me and my family feel good. Rarely can you purchase snacks that have been made with healthy ingredients much less snacks that use sweeteners like coconut palm sugar or coconut nectar. But the times you can, you are REALLY going to pay for it!!  $4.50 for 3 bite sized macaroons or 1 brownie for $5 ain’t cheap. I can make a pan of brownies for $7, but maybe that’s not such a good thing with my sweet tooth. My thought behind cooking/baking is, if we can’t buy it (see, by nature, I’m a lazy cook), then we can make it! 

And guess what…yep, you see it coming don’t you? There just happens to be a fabulous new book called Super Paleo Snacks that has many great recipes that are paleo but they are also great yummy snacks even for non-paleo eating families that just want to eat cleaner. It wasn’t just my taste buds that approved these recipes but it was the taste buds of my kids, my friend’s kids, neighbors, and anyone else I could find so these will satisfy even the finickiest of pallets. And, what’s so fun about many the recipes  like Peanut Butter Cookies in the book, you will learn that they don’t have to be just for desserts or weekend or special occasions. They CAN be a great snack, low in sugar and glycemic load, high in healthy fats and protein and SUPER TASTY!

Here is the first recipe from the book I get to share. It is super simple with only 4 ingredients and super delicious!!! We first had these during the big Atlanta snow storm last year. And fter playing in the snow, really these cookies along with some hot cocoa really hit the spot!  Remember, if you do decide to pre-order my book, be sure to enter the giveaway before this Sunday by letting me know in the comments here which prize you would like to win. 

I hope you love them! They really are mouthwatering!!

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This was kind of how the past 6 months went with photographing snacks for a book…

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Peanut Butter Cookies (nut-free) from Super Paleo Snacks Cookbook
Yields 24
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Ingredients
  1. 2 cup sunflower seed butter or 1 16 oz. jar
  2. 1 tbsp vanilla
  3. 1 cup coconut palm sugar
  4. ¼ tsp sea salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together all of the ingredients and stir until well combined.
  3. Then, on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet place about 12 golf ball sized pieces of dough (you can use two cookie sheets or cook two batches) on the paper.
  4. Make sure the cookies have about an inch or between them.
  5. Press the dough down to make them a little flat and then use a fork to press the criss cross pattern into them.
  6. Bake for 10 minutes and enjoy!
Stir It Up! http://stiritup.me/
 

landriav - HA Angela!! I dont know about starting it but sure would love to take advantage of it here!! You’re so lucky with all of your fabulous resource in the big city!! I’m jealous!

landriav - Sorry I just saw this Drennen. Thanks so much for your sweet post! And they are good, aren’t they? :) Thank you for sampling them (and so much more!). Hard to believe that was last year!!

Angela - Been seeing a lot more about bone broth these days…maybe you can start something like this in atlanta: http://wellandgood.com/2014/12/01/new-york-citys-new-bone-broth-subscription-service/

Drennen - Thank you Landria for your wealth of healthy info and food!! I can not wait to start making yummy treats from your book! Happy Thanksgiving! These cookies are delicious!

landriav - Ha, I know you are Eileen! And…I hope you’re right!!

Eileen - Landria, you KNOW I am on board with getting places like Brodo and Hu Kitchen to Atlanta! Going to work on my bone broth recipes this winter…maybe the time is closer than we think!

A very personal, fun, and different kind of GIVEAWAY

I am so excited!!! My copy of Super Paleo Snacks arrived just a few days ago. It is so fun to see the finished product! However…

So I’m just going to say it now. Despite what you might think, having a blog and all, I do not like, and am not comfortable with self promotion…of any kind…at all…ever. Uggggh, just the thought of it makes me so uncomfortable. When I started this blog years ago, I promised myself that this would be about education, nutrition and sharing recipes. Well, that was all before signing a book contract. 

Anyway, I’m really excited and proud so I wanted to celebrate the release with giving y’all something back for all of your support so I decided to do a GIVEAWAY!!

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So here’s the deal. If you pre-order my book now, or if you already did, you can enter to win one of the following two options of your choice. 

OPTION 1 (CONSULT)

I don’t know if you are familiar with me and my job, but I work with individuals and families to help them get well through nutrition. I’ve helped combat autoimmune diseases, balance hormone levels, treat metabolic disorders, address weight loss, and just help families to eat and feel better. This option includes a 90 minute nutritional consult, a $200 value with me either in person or via phone if you aren’t in Atlanta (Buckhead).

OPTION 2 (SNACKS )

I will bake the winner two of my favorite snacks from the book and ship them to you, so you’ll have your snacks made for the week! Woo hoo!!

AND…THE BONUS FOR THE WINNER…

I will also throw in a 12 oz. bottle of coconut nectar and 24 oz. bag of psyllium husk powder, which a both new(er) MUST haves for any Paleo kitchen. The psyllium husk powder is great for adding back squishiness into any paleo baked goods like donuts and the coconut nectar is my favorite liquid sweetener that won’t mess with blood sugar levels, yet adds the perfect sweetness.

HOW TO ENTER

If you purchase (or purchased) one copy of Super Paleo Snacks, then enter in the comments section  either “consult” or “snacks” depending on what you would like to win.  If you purchased more than one copy, for each add’l book copy you purchased, enter an additional comment.

RULES: If you are chosen as the winner, I will then need a copy of your emailed receipt with the purchase date of either the day you entered the contest or before. This giveaway is ONLY for US residents only. The winner will be chosen Sunday, November the 23rd at 10:00pm by using a 3rd party automation system. 

Alright, here are your links for ordering….

 AmazonBarnes & Noble, Indie BoundIndigo, or Bookish

Good luck and thank you sooooo much for your support!!!!!! 

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Catherine Martin - Snacks:)

Catherine Martin - Snacks!

Tara McCullen - Consult, please! And I definitely need to get my copy autographed! ;)

Jen Foresman - Consult, please! Congratulations on the book!

kat fritter - consult!

katfritter - consult

kat fritter - I preordered three of these!! Great gifts for my sister in laws….and 1 for me!
I would love the consultation….

landriav - Yes Catherine!! Thank you so much!

Catherine Martin - Snacks!! (I bought 3 copies do I need to input my name 3 times?)

Hilary - Excited to see the book….snacks please!

Ann - Ordered mine! Thanks for the preview recipes to enjoy until the books arrive! Consult or snacks…whatever you prefer!

Jordan Sneed - Consult! Excited to get the book in my hands!

JC Warner - SNACKS! So proud of you!

Jennifer Farrell - Consult! Or snacks! I just can’t decide. ;)

Angela - snacks!!

Leane Silhan - snacks!!! yay!

Alyson Durke - Congrats! Can’t wait to get it!

Jennifer Scott - Fired up for you!!!

Snacks :)

Susanne Duke - Congratulations Landria! Snacks and you to sign the book:)

Alison Gugenheim - Snacks

betsy - So excited! Thanks Landria! Snacks!!!

landriav - Post from Valerie:
So excited about your book – just ordered! Waiting for it since I attended your workshop at Ann S’s home last winter.
Consult!
Valerie

vmmaloof@comcast.net

Erin Bagwell - Snacks! :)

Amanda Fraraccio - I ordered after your first post, can’t wait to receive my copy! Would love the snacks:)

landriav - Perfect, thanks Susannah. Be sure to enter your name one more time, in different comments section. Just wanted to be sure you get counted twice. And thanks for getting two!! :)

Brandy Avery - Snacks

Amber Hunter - Consult please!! :-)

Susannah Parker - Just pre-ordered a couple of books – so excited to see your finished product soon! Way to go! I’ll take snacks for one book and consult for the other book :)

Jody Morgan - Consult PLEASE! And if I don’t win it, I’ll just have to hire you for one b/c I need it personally.

Brittany - Snacks!!!

Chris Colwell - Snacks

Robin Rubenstein - Snacks

Angela - Consult

Angela Sullivan - phone consult

Matt Hamby - consult, I cant wait to get my book, I just ordered it from Amazon. Congrats and great job!

Cathy Shaifer - Pre-ordered!!! Congrats!!!

Michelle - Consult, please. Can’t wait to get the book!

Jody - snacks. i pre ordered. looking forward to getting it!

Deborah Harrelson - consult

Lisa Blanco - So excited to get your book. Pre-ordered it on Amazon a while back! Can’t wait for it to come. Snacks!

Rosemary Church - Congratulations Landria! Thrilled 4 u! Just ordered on Amazon! “Consult” please!

Whitney - Consult or snacks! Congrats!

Shelley Estevez - Pre-ordered after your first post too (Amazon)! Congratulations on the book Landria!!! So exciting!! Consult ;).

landriav - Ha, of course Laurie, if you’re sure you really my sloppy handwriting on your book. :) Thanks!!

Laurie Ford - Consult – can I get you to sign my book sometime. Congrats.

Jen Anderton - Preordered on Amazon!! Yahoo and congrats!!

Melissa - Congratulations!!! So looking forward to these “paleo-tastic” treats. CONSULT, please. :)

Jae Robbins - Consult. Congrats on your book release – can’t wait to receive it!

Heather Holzworth - I pre-ordered through Amazon after your first post. I would love the consult. Thanks and I am so proud of you.

landriav - GREAT! Be sure to enter in what you want to win under your last comment and then on another separate comment. Thanks Angel!!

Lauren black - Snacks

Bridget Lippens - Just ordered! Consult:)

Lisa McIlvoy - Consult

Angel Touwsma - So excited for you! I just pre-ordered TWO copies. WOO HOO!

Jenn Gidfrey - SNACKS!!!!! :)

Mary Jane Piazza - Snacks

Christy - So excited for the book. I’ve ordered it and can’t wait for it arrive. Since I’ve already had a consultation – if I win….I’ll take the snacks! :)

Mary Jane Piazza - Consult

Berry - How fun! I just bought the book yesterday. I choose snacks!

Jennifer Lawrence - Hi Landria – I just pre-ordered your book on Amazon. I am excited to receive it, as I have been following your blog for years. If I win the contest, I would LOVE the consult! Good Luck with your book and Happy Thanksgiving! Best, Jen Lawrence

Pumpkin Donuts (and Fried Pumpkin Pancakes!)

Um….yum. That’s kind of all that needs to be said, right? Okay, so there is a difference in the first group of donuts (the pretty ones) versus the second roundish ones (the ugly ducklings). This is the perfect example of not judging a book by it’s cover. While these are good regardless of how you make them, the first ones I baked using this pan. The second batch were fried in a large pan in coconut oil and oh my goodness, they were amazing!! I hate when I am writing these posts late at night and the pictures make my mouth water.
 
What makes these so good (besides the chocolate and the coconut sugar) is Psyllium husk powder, which gives the donuts that squishy texture, typically missing from many baked Paleo treats since they lack gluten. While you don’t HAVE to have it for this recipe, it makes the texture even better. The good news about Psyllium Husk, and just another reason to buys some, is that it is good for you. It’s a soluble fiber, which is easy to digest, keeps you full, and, well, it keeps things moving if you know what I mean. I think it’s a great new addition to my flours and we will continue to enjoy it often in many baked goods. I hope y’all like it too! 
 
stiritup.me
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And, then, not as pretty, but hopefully it’s at least a helpful picture to show you how we cooked the Fried Pumpkin Pancakes.
 
Preheat oven (if making the donuts) to 350F. In a small mixing bowl, add dry ingredients and stir together well. In a medium bowl, mix together the egg, pumpkin puree, and vanilla. Once well combined, pour the dry ingredients into the medium wet ingredients bowl and stir well.
 
Then, place the batter in a gallon storage freezer bag. Cut the corner of the bag with scissors (so the opening is about the size of a pencil eraser or a little smaller) and squeeze the batter into either a greased (we used butter but you could use ghee or coconut oil) donut pan, or, heat a large pan on high and add 2-3 tbsp (enough so it will “fry” and it will sizzle on the sides of the pancake) of coconut oil. Once that heats up, squeeze small dollar sized pancakes and cook on each side for about 1-2 minutes or until they are brown. 

 

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Once they are done, place them on a plate covered with a paper towel. While they are cooling, melt 1/4 cup of dark chocolate chips in a large or flat bowl. Also, place 2 tbsp of coconut palm sugar on a flat plate for dipping. Then, take your Pumpkin Donuts or your Fried Pumpkin Pancakes and dip them in the chocolate, coat one or both sides, and dip into the coconut palm sugar and devour!
 
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Pumpkin Donuts (or Fried Pumpkin Pancakes!)
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Ingredients
  1. 1/4 cup coconut flour
  2. 1/8 tsp sea salt
  3. 1/2 tsp baking soda
  4. 1/3 cup coconut palm sugar
  5. 2 tsp psyllium husk powder (optional)
  6. 1 tbsp pumpkin spice
  7. 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  8. 2 large organic eggs
  9. 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  10. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  11. 2-3 tbsp coconut oil (if frying)
  12. 2 tbsp coconut palm sugar, for topping
  13. 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips, melted, for topping
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven (if not frying) to 350F.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, add dry ingredients and stir together well.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix together the egg, pumpkin puree, and vanilla.
  4. Once well combined, pour the dry ingredients into the medium wet ingredients bowl and stir well.
  5. Then, regardless of how you are cooking them, place the batter in a storage size.
  6. Cut the corner of the bag with scissors (so the opening is about the size of a pencil eraser or a little smaller) and squeeze the batter into either a greased (we used butter but you could use ghee or coconut oil) donut pan,OR, heat a large pan on high and add 2-3 tbsp (enough so it will "fry" and it will sizzle on the sides of the pancake) of coconut oil.
  7. Once that heats up, squeeze small dollar sized pancakes and cook on each side for about 1-2 minutes or until they are brown.
  8. Once they are done, place them on a plate covered with a paper towel.
  9. While they are cooling, melt about 1/4 cup of dark chocolate chips in a large or flat bowl.
  10. Also, place 2 tbsp of coconut palm sugar on a flat plate for dipping.
  11. Then, take your Pumpkin Donuts or your Fried Pumpkin Pancakes and dip them in the chocolate, coat one or both sides, and dip into the coconut palm sugar and devour!
Notes
  1. This will make enough batter for a little over 6 donuts if you are using the donut pan but don't over fill the pan. Just fill the pan until the batter is almost reaching the top of the donut hole cup.
Stir It Up! http://stiritup.me/
 

Sara - These sounds really good! How long do you back them for?

Lanny - Landria, these donuts look sooooo good!!!!

Paleo Tuscan Chicken…

After almost 3 years (has it really been that long?!) of writing StirItUp, it gets kind of hard to come up with new recipes. Recently, I made a vow to make a new meal at least once a week. Sure, I want to be able to post new recipes, but, more importantly, I think it is just good for my kids to try new things. Lately, because life has been so busy, I’ve become a creature of habit, making the same go-to diners over and over. And while that can get boring for everyone, it also makes my kids creatures of habit as well. When all of a sudden I have something new for them to try, they sniff at the dish skeptically and ask “what’s in it?”.  My advice: keep introducing new foods, so they stay accustomed to trying new things.

I tried one new recipe this weekend and, truth be told, it wasn’t my favorite…or anyone else’s. Big bummer! You win some, you lose some. But then a reader (thanks Kara!) suggested I make this recipe. I made a few tweaks to adjust for dietary reasons, but, goodness, this meal was AMAZING if I do say so myself….

stirirup.me tuscan chicken

Oh my gosh, we all LOVED it!! You’ve gotta try it. Really! And I didn’t have much time to cook tonight, so it had to be quick and easy. I wanted to chop and saute onions (per the original recipe) but just didn’t have the time. And while there are a decent amount of directions below, don’t be intimidated. I promise it is quick and simple to make. And so worth it! I already can’t wait to make it again!

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Tate decided it was dinner time and helped himself…_DSC0706C

Two other quick tips for those interested. On Sunday’s, I typically cut up 3 pounds of chicken and put them in two separate containers so when it’s time to make dinner during the week, it not only saves me time, but also lowers the mental hurdle of having to prep chicken. Oh and I’m not sure if you have a ULU knife but next to my mandolin slicer and spiralizer, this is one of my favorite kitchen tools! For this recipe, I used it after I washed the mushrooms in the colander and then chopped them with my Ulu knife (while still in the colander) into smaller pieces. And then I did the same thing with the artichoke hearts when they were draining in the colander. It’s so worth the $10-20 (with chopping board and without)!

Fast and Easy Paleo Recipes

Tuscan Chicken
Serves 4
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Ingredients
  1. 1.5 lb chicken breasts or thighs, cut into bite sized pieces
  2. 2 tsp sea salt
  3. 2 tsp white wine
  4. 4 garlic cloves, minced
  5. 1 tsp oregano
  6. 1/2 tsp thyme
  7. 1 can artichoke, chopped
  8. 1 package fresh mushroom, chopped
  9. 1/3 cup, sun-dried tomatoes
  10. 3 tbsp, capers
  11. 3 tbsp, grass fed butter (or ghee) for sauteing
  12. 1 tbsp coconut oil, for cooking chicken
  13. parley, garnish
Instructions
  1. Cut chicken into bite sized pieces.
  2. Heat up large pan on medium high heat and add coconut oil.
  3. Add chicken and stir every few minutes.
  4. While the chicken is cooking, heat up another large pan and add about 1 tbsp of butter and half of the pack of mushrooms (if you add it all at once there will be too much liquid from the mushrooms and they won't brown).
  5. Once those turn brown, after about 8 or so minutes, add that to the pan of chicken.
  6. Then add another tbsp of butter and add your minced garlic. Then add the artichoke hearts (I chopped mine into smaller pieces) and let cook for about 5 minutes or until brown.
  7. Then add in the capers and sun-dried tomatoes so they can cook for a few more minutes and soak up the butter flavor. Then add to the chicken pan.
  8. Now add the last tbsp of butter and the other half of mushrooms, repeat cooking until brown. Add mushrooms to the chicken, add spices, stir well and enjoy!
Stir It Up! http://stiritup.me/
 

landriav - Hey, thanks Rachael! I think that would work just fine. It will miss a touch of the kick, but the butter or ghee really will help make up for it. I hope you like it!

Rachael - This sounds delish. Do you think chicken stock would work in place of white wine?