'Tis the Season

My name is Erin Shriver and I’m a Primal food blogger and owner of Primal Body bath and body products in Pittsburgh, PA. As a recovering vegan, I have adopted and embraced a Paleo lifestyle and began digging into alternative grain free cooking and baking methods for my blog, Real Food Renegade. With more than 10 years of professional experience formulating bath and body products I developed some Paleo/Primal friendly personal care products made with all natural organic butters, oils and of course grass fed beef tallow that really focuses on sustainable ingredients. The Primal Body store will be launched in December 2012 with a limited selection of "Cheeky Cow" grass fed tallow soaps, lotions and exfoliating body scrubs.



Seared Lamb Steaks With Bone Marrow Mashed Potatoes and Maitake Mushroom Sauce

US Wellness Featured Chef Main


  • 2 US Wellness Meats lamb steaks
  • 1 cup chopped Maitake mushrooms
  • 1 cup brown demi glace
  • 1/2 cup port wine
  • 2 tablespoons chopped shallots
  • sea salt
  • pepper
  • 2 tablespoons pastured butter
  • 6 marrow bones
  • 6 medium potatoes peeled and cut into large cubes
  • 1/2 cup pastured heavy cream


Allow steaks to sit out for about 45 minutes and bring to room temperature for even cooking. Lightly salt and pepper the lamb steaks and sear on one side in a hot heavy bottom skillet for about 3-4 minutes. A cast iron pan works best for this. Turn over and sear the other side for another 3-4 minutes. Remove the steaks and allow to rest on a cutting board loosely wrapped in foil.

To prepare the Maitake mushroom sauce, using the same cast iron skillet, add 1 tablespoon of pastured butter and shallots. Cook on high for about 30-40 seconds before deglazing the pan with the port wine. Turn down the heat, scrape up all of the brown bits from the bottom of the pan from the lamb steaks and add the brown demi glace. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes or so. Strain the sauce through a sieve into a sauce pan. Add the chopped Maitake to the sauce pan and simmer for another minute or two. Remove from heat and blend in a tablespoon of pastured butter.

Slice the lamb steaks, plate over Bone Marrow Mashed Potatoes (see below) and spoon the Maitake sauce over the top and serve immediately.

For a mighty spin on traditional mashed potatoes, try adding some roasted bone marrow to the mix for a punch of rustic primal flair and a nutritious kick!

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Place marrow bones on a cookie sheet with sides to prevent the drippings from, well, dripping! Bake for approximately 15-20 minutes until bubbly, remove from oven to cool a it while you prepare your mashed potatoes. Boil six medium peeled potatoes until soft in salted water. Remove from water when done and place in a stand mixer. Add 1/2 cup of heavy cream. Using the back of a spoon, push the marrow out of the bones into the mashed potatoes. Add salt and pepper as desired and mix until well blended.


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Bison Bourguignon with Black Truffle
Salt Tallow Fries

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Ingredients for the marinade:

Ingredients for Cooking the Beef:

  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons pastured butter
  • 2 cups brown demi glace
  • 2 tablespoons arrowroot flour
  • 12 button mushrooms


Cut bison into 1 inch cubes and put them into a 3qt bowl or container. Peel and quarter all of the vegetables and then chop into small chunks. Peel the garlic clove and add it along with the rest of the marinade ingredients to the bowl. Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and refridgerate for one to two days being sure to stir a few times.

Once the beef has marinated for 1-2 days, heat a heavy bottomed (not non-stick) pot (cast iron works well if you have one) and add a pat of butter. Strain the marinade and add the bison and vegetables to the pot to brown the meat and slightly cook the vegetables. This should take 5-8 minutes.

Add the wine marinade to the pot and reduce by half. Once the marinade is reduced by half, add the brown demi-glace and continue to simmer on low for about 1.5 hours.

While the stew is simmering, finely chop a dozen fresh mushrooms. Set a pan at medium heat and add a tablespoon of butter and a dash of salt. Sauté and stir for about three minutes. Reserve.

Put arrowroot flour into a measuring cup with 1/4 cup of water and mix thoroughly. Add a little at a time to the stew to get desired thickness. If it gets too thick, add a little more wine and beef stock. If it’s too thin for you, add a little more arrowroot flour mixed in water. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning as necessary. Add the mushrooms to the stew and serve with a side of Black Truffle Salt Tallow Fries or over a generous serving of bone marrow mashed potatoes.

US Wellness Featured Chef Bison Fries Collage copy

Ingredients for the marinade:

  • Russet potatoes (approx 1 large potato per person)
  • 4-6 cups of US Wellness Meats beef tallow
  • water (to soak potatoes in)
  • a few dashes of black truffle sea salt


Cut potatoes into fries. Feel free to leave skins on if you prefer but I peled mine since I have a picky 9 year old daughter who thinks they’re “yucky” with the skins. Such as life. Anyway, once your fries are cut, place them in a bowl large enough to hold the fries and with enough room to cover them all in water. Rinse the fries a few times until the water runs pretty much clear. Add water to the bowl covering the fries and place in refrigerator to soak for at least an hour but up to overnight.

When you are ready to fry, heat the beef tallow to 370 degrees in a heavy cast iron pot being sure that there is plenty of room for the tallow and fries. Fill no higher than 1/3 with the melted tallow. While the tallow is heating, drain the fries and dry thoroughly with paper towels. When the tallow has reached 370 degrees and in small batches, place the fries in the VERY hot tallow with a large slotted spoon. Cook for about 3 minutes. Carefully remove the fries with tongs or a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Continue this process until you have fried all of the potatoes.

Next, raise the temperature of the tallow to about 380 degrees and repeat the whole process of cooking the fries a second time giving them that crispy golden goodness that we all know and love! Remove and drain again on paper towels. Sprinkle with a few dashes of black truffle sea salt and eat ‘em up!


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Pulled Pork 3 Ways

US Wellness Pulled Pork 3 Ways8x4 BW

Ingredients for Pork:


Cut the onion into large chunks and line the bottom of your crockpot with them. Generously salt and pepper your US Wellness Meats Pork Shoulder Roast and place in the crockpot. Add 2 Cups of bone broth or chicken stock. Turn your crockpot to low and cook covered for 8-9 hours or until the pork is tender and falling apart. When done, transfer to a cutting board, take two forks and shred the pork with two forks while discarding excess fat. Mix with one of the following RFR Paleo sauces or split between all three throughout the week for a variety snack pack!

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Ingredients for Apple Chutney with Spiced Pecans:

  • 1 small onion diced small
  • 4 tart apples peeled and diced
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup apple cider
  • 3 Tablespoons honey
  • 2 Tablespoons pastured butter
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh finely minced ginger
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • dash of cayenne pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh tarragon chopped
  • 1 cup chopped spicy pecans


Melt butter in a medium sauce pan, add onions and sauté until translucent and soft. Add apple cider, apple cider vinegar, wine, honey, ginger, cayenne, salt, cinnamon stick, and apples. Simmer until liquid is reduced and sauce becomes thick. This typically takes about an hour or so. Add a dash (or more) cayenne to taste. Add chopped spicy pecans and mix with chutney. Combine chutney with pulled pork and top with fresh tarragon. Serve hot.


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US Wellness Featured Chef Pulled Pork 2 copy 1024x697

Ingredients for Pomegranate Cranberry BBQ Sauce:

  • 1 12 oz bag fresh organic cranberries
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened pomegranate juice concentrate or 1/2 cup pomegranate juice
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup (optional for those on low carb/sugar diets)
  • 3 Tablespoons worcestershire sauce
  • 1.5 tablespoons dry yellow mustard powder
  • 2 heaping teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chipotle


Add pomegranate juice concentrate, chicken stock, red wine vinegar and cranberries to a sauce pot and bring to a boil. Turn down heat and simmer until cranberries begin to pop and soften. Add remaining ingredients and simmer on low for 10 minutes. Mix into US Wellness Meats pulled pork and serve hot with Real Food Renegade Tallow Fries or Duck Fat Tostones.

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Ingredients for Roasted Chestnut Sauce:

  • 1 yellow onion finely diced
  • 2 cups US Wellness Meats Beef Marrow Bone Stock
  • 1 cup veal demi glace
  • 3/4 cup port wine
  • 1/2 cup diced roasted chestnuts
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh garlic finely minced
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot flour


Melt butter in a sauce pan, add onions and sauté until soft and translucent. Add port wine, rosemary, thyme and garlic and simmer for 5-8 minutes until liquid is reduced to about 1/4 cup. Dissolve arrowroot flour in 3 Tablespoons of the beef stock. Add the remaining beef stock or bone broth to the sauce pot followed by the arrowroot mixture. Blend thoroughly and add demi glace and chestnuts. Simmer on low for 20-30 minutes. Spoon over pulled pork and serve with some Real Food Renegade Primal Bone Marrow Mashed Potatoes.

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Primal Body Tallow Soap

Primal Body US Wellness

Before attempting to make soap at home — READ THIS LYE SAFETY INFORMATION!! and if you are completely new to soap making, please check out this beginners tutorial on how it’s done before attempting to craft this recipe at home.


Ingredients BY WEIGHT:

Prepare lye solution by slowly adding lye to the water (be sure to use a heat proof glass container). Mix gently (I use a silicone spatula) to incorporate the lye into the water. Set aside in a safe place to cool to about 115 degrees F.

Place all oils in a large heat proof container, like a Pyrex glass container, and melt in the microwave in bursts until the oils and butters are melted and fully incorporated. Alternatively, you can heat the oils on your stove in a pot until the butters and oils are well incorporated.

When the oils and lye are approximately the same temperature (115 degrees), slowly add the lye solution to the oils while mixing with a stick blender. You can try this by hand but it will take foreva! It’s definitely worth investing in a cheap stick blender from Target or Walmart for this job.

Continue mixing with the stick blender until the mixture comes to “trace”. Trace is where it begins to thicken like pudding — like when you drag a spoon through the mix, it leaves a light trace. Be careful however not to let it get too thick or you may have trouble pouring it into the mold.

Add your fragrance and mix on low to incorporate. This all takes a bit of time to get the hang of but after a couple of experiments, you will start to get a feel for when the mixture is blended enough. Once the fragrance is added, be sure to fully incorporate it, but don’t over mix or the soap may begin to seize.

While the soap is still liquid and “pudding-like”, pour into a prepared soap mold that has been lined with parchment paper.


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