Today’s Blogger Guest Post for The Holiday Project:
Jenna from The Paleo Project

[I love reading Jenna's blog for her delicious recipes, fun pictures, stories, and book recommendations. She strives hard to follow the paleo lifestyle, and I think that's so amazing!]

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Before I learned to cook, or even cared to cook for that matter, the all-consuming task of holiday prep, revolved around one thing: presents. Gifts. Thinking of them, saving for them, buying them, wrapping them, delivering them, and usually without fail, watching them remain untouched for the following year, because you can really never know what your boyfriend’s mother wants for Christmas. You do your best based on a few years hanging around their home. You see the products she loves, the kitchenware she swears by, the name on the bag she brings home after Sunday shopping trips with her girls. But you can never really pinpoint if she loves that store, or just loved that one thing she found there. If she loves antique dishes, or she just has antique dishes because they belonged to her aunts and clearly hold a special, priceless, irreplaceable meaning that you could never replicate in your Nordstrom purchase.

And then I learned to cook. I learned to understand recipes. To sift almond flour. To melt coconut oil. I learned to roll out dough, and sprinkle on toppings. To preheat and to bake and to cool and to serve. I spent the past year making this transition from spending money on store-bought crap, to spending time in my kitchen, creating fresh and wholesome dishes. Each holiday since last January, I’ve tried. It hasn’t always been the tastiest dish on the table. And sometimes, it turns out that I’m eating the remaining slices of pie, or the last three cookies, because I really do appreciate the work that went into them and the importance of eating grain- and dairy-free. Not everyone does, and I get that. But these cookies are something else. Something to bring to the holidays, something to focus my efforts on outside of gifts that won’t be used. This year, I have cookies. These cookies were perfected by their creators, to taste better than any traditional gingerbread man, and to be healthier as well. So I’m spending November in the kitchen. Preparing for all the holidays forthcoming, where I’ll need desserts that not only fit into my lifestyle, but fit into the life of the people I love.

Rule number one: Having someone to make this recipe with is a must.

First, I melted and mixed molasses, maple syrup and palm shortening on the stove.

While James combined the dry ingredients in a large bowl, I poured the melted mixture in.

Unfortunately, we didn’t have parchment paper. Rule number two: I beg you to run out and get it before you start. It makes a world of difference in the sticky molasses department.

Then our gingerbread family took form.

Rule number three: they don’t have to be perfect. They’ll taste amazing anyway.

After only 10 minutes in the hot oven, the results were so surprising, as I’m always surprised that you don’t need to use added sugar or wheat flour to make a delicious cookie.

Rule number four: this batch is for taste testing!

For the complete recipe, head over to The Food Lover’s Primal Palate.

Have you decided on a new holiday tradition to outweigh the never-ending trips to the mall?

Hello Life Tastes Like Food Readers! I’m Jenna, I’m 23 and I live in the Boston area. I began blogging at The Paleo Project in January 2011. What started as a 30 day Paleo cleanse, (grain-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, legume-free, processed-free) evolved into so much more. Aside from being a semi-paleo blogger, I’m a budding photographer and a Marketing Specialist in Boston. I love shopping, getting lost in a good book, toned arms, pedicures, traveling, my boyfriend, children, my family, my best girl friends and anything chocolate. The Paleo Project will include all of that and more on a daily basis. Thanks for having me Stephanie!


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2 Responses to “Grain-Free Gingerbread Men”

  1. [...] So, to start off this glorious month of festivities, I’m over on Life Tastes Like Food. [...]

  2. Great Post to Kick Off December with the Gingerbread:) Thanks for sharing!

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