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Picadillo is a Cuban dish that can be made a million different ways, but generally includes ground meat (generally beef), some sort of sweet something (raisins or dried apricots or both), tomatoes, and olives. To me, the combination is magical. The brine of the olives gets under my skin, leaving me craving more for days to come. Luckily, the other half of this household is olive-adverse, so more for me.

Paleo, gluten-free and Whole30-compliant

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Paleo Pork Picadillo

2c. chopped butternut squash
2 Tbsp. coconut oil
2 tsp. dried oregano, divided
1 lb. ground pork
1 yellow onion
4 cloves garlic
1 bell pepper (any color)
1 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 Tbsp. capers
1 (14 ounce) can diced tomatoes
Hand full of golden raisins (or more, if you’re a raisin lover)
1/2 cup olives (or more, if you’re an olive lover)
2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
2 Tbsp. olive juice
Kosher salt

Preheat your oven to 400. Dice the butternut squash and spread out on a cookie sheet. Toss with 1 Tbsp. coconut oil, 1 tsp. oregano and a few pinches salt. Bake 20-35 minutes, or until tender. You’ll want to turn the squash a few times during cooking to avoid burning.

Heat the other Tbsp. coconut oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the pork and cook until browned, breaking up as you go along. Hit with a big sprinkle of salt.

While the pork is working, dice the onion, garlic and pepper. Add to the pan and sautee until the onion is translucent.

Add the second tsp. oregano, cumin, chili powder, cinnamon and capers plus another big pinch of salt. Sautee 1-2 minutes to let the spices bloom.

Add the diced tomatoes, raisins, olives, vinegar, and olive juice. Bring to a boil. Taste for salt and add more if needed. Drop the heat to a simmer and let go 5-10 minutes.

Serve the picadillo over the butternut squash.

Serves 2 for dinner + 1 for lunch.