Review of Russ Crandall's Cookbook "The Ancestral Table" (PLUS...a Recipe!)

This past weekend, I had the pleasure of getting a sneak peek of Russ Crandall’s new book, The Ancestral Table: Traditional Recipes for a Paleo Lifestyle.

The book contains over a hundred gluten-free Paleo recipes for both beginner cooks and more experienced cooks alike.

Russ also includes a brief overview of kitchen tools, cooking techniques, less commonly known ingredients, and grilling and smoking basics for readers who might be unfamiliar with some of the ingredients and preparation methods outlined in the book.

One of things that differentiates this book from other Paleo cookbooks is the inclusion of white rice, potatoes, and dairy. Russ provides a thorough explanation in the beginning of the book as to why he does this and also provides substitutions in the back of the book for readers who follow a stricter Paleo diet.

As someone who believes that there is no “one size fits all” way of eating that works well for everyone, I truly appreciate the flexibility that Russ includes in his book.

Now...onto the recipe!

Russ so generously offered to share one of his recipes with us so I took it for a test drive and it was delicious!

The Sole Meunière  is a classic French dish with a brilliant flavor that made me feel like I had spent hours preparing it. I would definitely make it again for guests who’ll have no idea that the entire dish takes less than 15 minutes from start to finish.

Instead of sole, I used cod. Russ mentions that this recipe works with any flatfish and I'm happy to report that the dish still came out wonderful.

Although I love fish, I rarely cook it so I found the directions in the cookbook easy to follow, even for someone as inexperienced as myself. This held true for the directions of the other recipes I looked at as well.

Surprisingly, this dish tasted light, despite the fact that the fish was fried. The combination of the butter, coconut oil, and lemon created a full flavor that was truly enjoyable. I encourage you to give this recipe a try and check out Russ Crandall's new book, The Ancestral Table: Traditional Recipes for a Paleo Lifestyle.

RECIPE: Sole Meunière

  • Serves: 2
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 8 minutes


  • 2 Sole, Plaice, Turbot, or Flounder Fillets, about 6 oz each
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp fresh-ground black
  • 3 tbsp tapioca starch or arrowroot starch
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 lemon, sliced


  1. Gently rinse and pat dry the fillets with paper towels. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Dredge the fish in the starch on both sides, shaking off the excess. Place on a plate and set aside.
  2. Heat the coconut oil in a large skillet on medium-high until shimmering, about 2 minutes, then stir in the butter. When the butter stops foaming (about 40 seconds), add the fish and pan-fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Carefully flip the fish and cook until done, another 2-3 minutes, adding the lemon slices during the last 20 seconds of cooking. Pour the browned butter and lemon sauce over the fillets when serving.

Give this recipe a try and don't forget to check out Russ Crandall's new cookbook!


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