When our cave-dwelling ancestors used fire to prepare meals, they didn’t have pots and pans at their disposal. Of necessity, their methods of cooking were quite primitive.
For example, it was highly unlikely that they boiled anything, even if hollowed out gourds filled with water could have done the trick. Steaming and poaching would have been problematic, too.
If they “fried” food on a heated flat rock, they didn’t use vegetable oil or butter. And “baking” meant burying food in damp leaves surrounded by hot coals, not wrapping it in aluminum foil for placement in temperature-controlled ovens. Roasting was the default cooking technique.
Similarly, the selection of spices and condiments available to early humans was limited by geography. Even salt and pepper were not ubiquitous as they are today, making the Stone Age menu naturally low in sodium. Seasonings and sauces would have to have been simple in the extreme.
So meals that adhere to the Paleo Diet are perfect for those who do not have a lot of culinary training. None of the recipes require a lot of kitchen skills—just a bit of imagination and a willingness to experiment.
In fact, for most folks who are new to Stone Age-style eating, the hardest part initially is avoiding processed foods that would not have been present 30,000 years ago. It means giving up many of the carbohydrate-rich foods we are used to. Potatoes, white rice, cookies, cakes, granulated sugar, bread, doughnuts, pies, cereals and corn were not staples of the Paleolithic era.
Similarly, dairy products are largely avoided, as are legumes. Most beverages other than water and natural fruit juices are off the list, too. But before you start thinking “Paleo Diet = Boring,” just consider some of the delicious alternatives it opens up, using our 49 Paleo Diet Starter Recipes, as a guide.
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