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UPDATE: Jessica L and Erica R are the winners! Congrats. I've emailed you both for mailing addresses.

I used to be one of those people that would head into the kitchen once a year to make a feast, often times burning at least one dish and putting a nice gash across some kind of appendage. Seriously folks, you have to practice at these things else it will always be an annual disaster! But now that I cook for our small family nearly every day, holiday meals and entertaining are not nearly as frightening as they used to be.

Plus, with all these great cookbooks around, I now have fun meal planning in advance! One cookbook I am turning to for this year's Thanksgiving feast is The Zenbelly Cookbook: An Epicurean's Guide to Paleo Cuisine. I have had this book in my possession for a number of months. And I have to say, it's like getting a private tutorial from a seasoned chef! Simone owns a catering business in San Francisco, will occasionally do pop-ups at local restaurants and she writes a food blog. Not once have I ever made a recipe that went south. She makes me look like a rockstar in the kitchen; her recipes are kitchen klutz (me) proof!

So just in time for all the holiday meal planning, I have a special gift for you! Two of you, that's right, two, can win a copy of The Zenbelly Cookbook by Simone Miller. All you have to do is click the button below to go to my sweepstakes page and signup for my email newsletter. If you want a chance for even more entries, there are additional options too! Sweepstakes opens Tuesday 11 November at 0900 PT and ends at noon PT on Tuesday 17 November 2014.

UPDATE: The two copies I have will now be *signed copies* - how cool is that?


Bonus Recipe: Rustic Apple Tartlets

Simone has graciously allowed me to post one of the incredible recipes in her book. If you are looking for a nice dessert for a holiday meal, but are not into the same ol pumkkin thang, then look no further to the Rustic Apple Tartlets! While this recipe is not AIP, its still a great addition to your holiday menu for your guests who are not AIP.

It has always been my understanding that the more difficult a pie crust is to work with, the better the end result will be. Consider that fair warning. It's certainly workable, but try not to get frustrated if it needs some patching while you work with it. Besides, the word rustic allows for certain amount of character! – Simone Miller

prep time: 30 minutes | cook time: 30 minutes | makes: 4 individual tartlets

Ingredients

3/4 pound apples (about 2), cut into half moon slices 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick
1 tablespoon coconut sugar, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons plus 1/2 cup arrowroot powder, plus more for dusting
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups almond flour
pinch of finely ground sea salt
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the sliced apples, 1 1/2 teaspoons of the coconut sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons of the arrowroot, lemon juice, and cinnamon. Stir to combine and set aside.
  3. In another bowl, whisk together the almond flour, remaining 1/2 cup of arrowroot, remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons of coconut sugar, and the salt. Cut the butter into small pats and cut it into the dough with a pastry cutter or two knives.
  4. Mix one of the eggs and the vanilla extract into the almond flour mixture. Keep mixing until it forms a dough.
  5. Divide the dough into four even sections. On a floured piece of parchment paper, press each section into a disc. Dust the discs and a rolling pin with arrowroot and roll them out into circles about 5 inches across.
  6. Beat the remaining egg in a small bowl and brush the tops of the discs. Slide the parchment and dough onto a baking sheet.
  7. Arrange a row of apple slices in the center of each disc, leaving a space around the outside large enough to fold up.
  8. Carefully fold up the sides of the discs around the outer edges of the apples. Using a flat metal spatula is helpful: Slide it under the dough and lift up and over the apples, leaving the center uncovered. Using your fingers, crease the dough together every couple of inches to enclose the apples.
  9. Brush the exposed apples with a little of the juice remaining in the bowl. Brush the crusts with the egg wash.
  10. Bake for 25 or 30 minutes or until the crust is golden and the apples have softened.

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