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Whole30 – Day 61

10 Dec

Whew!  I’ve just completed my second Whole30 in a row.  Granted I did have wine twice and about a 1/4 inch square piece of a smores poptart, but other than that I’ve been totally, 100% compliant, which is pretty impressive if you ask me.

I’m still loving the food and still not so much loving the cooking but I get it done week after week because I know that’s what needs to happen.  I did get a new kitchen gadget that I’m loving and that is helping me cook healthy and quick.  It’s called an Instant Pot, or InstaPot, and it’s a 7 in 1 device that acts as a crock pot, pressure cooker, and other features I haven’t used yet.  I love the pressure cooker setting!  I made the most tender amazing beef roast in it tonight and also an entire chicken.  It’s really good for making bone broth too, which is really good for helping to heal the gut.  I also made some chicken hash with shredded sweet potatoes, granny smith apples, and chicken thighs as well as some spaghetti squash chow mien.  Hopefully it’s all good because this is what I’m eating this week.

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Now for the bummer part of my post.  I’m really not making any progress 😦  I continue to eat real, whole, not processed foods because I know that is what my body needs but I’m still super tired and not seeing any changes to my body (outside or inside).  I’ve been on my current medications for a month now and really thought I’d start to see some improvements.  My weight has stayed roughly the same as where it was after my first 30 days (within a pound or two either lower or higher depending on the day) and my clothes fit the same.  I really feel like until I get on thyroid medications I’m not going to see the changes I’m looking to see.

I’m really trying not to be too down on myself because I know I’m doing everything I can.  I also know I didn’t make myself sick overnight so I can’t expect to be healed overnight either.  I just have a hard time being patient when I know there are other things that can be done and it’s not me holding back the progress.  Yep, I still have another month to go before I see my doctor again.  I even called the office today hoping to get a call back but I haven’t heard anything yet.  They decided to close their doors for two months so I’m just on stand-still and that really bothers me.

I haven’t been as good on the exercise front as I had meant to be.  I posted two weeks ago that I was going to start lifting and that hasn’t happened.  I know it’s an excuse of sorts but they day I had planned on going after work I ended up having to stay four extra hours and I’ve just been exhausted with some really long, really wet and windy, work days.  I have been doing yoga 3-4 times a week though and I really am enjoying that.  I feel like it doesn’t exhaust me as bad as a hard workout does and for now I think that’s what my body needs.

Here’s to another 30 days and hopefully some new improvements.  I think I’m going to go pour myself a glass of wine….because I can 🙂

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Jalapeno Lime Shrimp

25 Apr

I know what you’re probably thinking right now, “You cooked twice in one week, let alone in one day?” You must be feeling feverish right? Well, I’m just trying to get ready for a week back to work after 10 whole days off. They weren’t completely off since I did still have school, but it was relaxing none-the-less. I worked out a ton (crossfit rocks, I’m sure I’ll be doing a post about that real soon too), read a few books (currently really into the Stephanie Plum series), bought a new/used beach cruiser and actually had sunny enough weather to use it, and did homework.

I found this recipe through Pinterest. The original can be found here on the Alaska from Scratch blog.

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Here’s the recipe:

Jalapeno Lime Shrimp

Ingredients

            1 tablespoon olive oil

            2 tablespoons butter

            1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes

            1 small onion, chopped

            1 jalapeno, seeded and minced

            2 cloves garlic, minced

            2 tomatoes, chopped

            1 cup chicken broth

            1 pound shrimp, peeled (I removed the tails, but that is up to your preference)

            1 lime, zested

            juice of half the lime

            3 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

            salt to taste

            lime wedges, for serving

           

           

Instructions

To a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, add the oil and butter. Stir in the red chile flakes. Saute the onions and jalapeño until tender, 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and stir until fragrant, but not browned, about 1 minute. Toss in the tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes begin to break down and release their juices, another 2-3 minutes. Add the chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Then, add the shrimp to the skillet and season with salt, cooking and tossing until shrimp just turn pink and are cooked through but still tender, being careful not to overcook. Add the lime zest, lime juice, and cilantro. Taste for seasoning and add more salt as needed. Serve promptly with crusty bread, or over rice or noodles.

I served mine over cauliflower rice (paleo friendly). The next time I make this I will attempt to try to remember that it is worth it to spend more on the shrimp and not have to peel them yourself, what a pain! Also, I’d opt to use ½ cup of chicken broth rather than a whole cup because mine turned out much runnier than the original picture. It’s very good though, very limey and of course I added extra garlic (because that’s what I do)!

Cauliflower (California) Pizza

28 Jun

Well, I started school again after a semester off.  So far so good.  But, in classic college student fashion, I want pizza!  The only problem with that is that I’m still trying to lose vacation weight.  It’s slowly but surely coming off, but pizza is not in the diet plan.  After a little searching on the internet I came across a pretty awesome blog called Rabbit Food for my Bunny Teeth, and found this recipe. 

The only thing I did to alter the original recipe was that I wanted to use up the entire head of cauliflower, which made six cups of shredded cauliflower.  I made that into two pizzas and just added 1 1/2 times the amount of everything called for, except for the eggs, I added two to each “dough”.  It’s kinda hard to half an egg, lol.

I keep trying to call this Cauliflower Pizza, but my mind keeps thinking California Pizza.  I think that’s a good name for it!  Maybe I just have California on the mind.  It’s highly likely.

I highly recommend you give this a try.  It’s not exactly regular pizza, but it not far off either, and you would never know you were eating cauliflower if you didn’t make it yourself or someone told you.  There’s surprisingly quite a bit of flavor that comes from the spices you add into the crust and it makes the whole house smell good once it goes into the oven. 

I’ve read some complaints about other cauliflower crusts, how you can’t pick it up like regular pizza and that it has to be eaten with a fork.  I assure you that I didn’t have this problem at all…even though I was armed with a  fork just in case.

Here’s some drool-worthy pics for you to check out:

 

cauliflower pizza crustCooked califlower pizza crust

The crust before and after it’s cooked.  You can see it starts to resemble a dough more after it’s been cooked.

Cauliflower Pizza Done

And the final product!  I’m going to be honest here, it tastes even better than it looks!

Bubble Up Pizza

5 Apr

I’m stuffed!  So much for not cooking for a week in preparation to leave for a month.  I cleaned out the refrigerator and everything but having absolutely no food in the house sucks.  So I made a quick trip to the grocery store today for just enough stuff to make a recipe I found on Pinterest.  Find the recipe here.

Here’s what the final product will look like, or close anyway….

Bubble Up Pizza

I generally love all things vegetarian, but I’ll be honest, I had fully intended to pick up some pepperoni while I was at the store and totally forgot.  So, this is a veggie version.  1 can of artichoke hearts chopped, sliced pickled jalapeños (like for nachos), 1 can of sliced olives, 1 can of mushrooms, nearly an entire bag of spinach, and lots of cheese!  I ended up having to bake this much longer than the site suggested.  I’m not sure if it’s just my oven or the fact that I couldn’t find biscuit dough that came in a size of six biscuits, the smallest I found was packages of 8.  It still turned out really good though.  So much easier than rolling out dough. 

Quinoa Mac & Cheese

28 Mar

 

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I found the most amazing mac and cheese recipe on Pinterest the other day and finally got around to cooking it up today.  This uses quinoa rather than macaroni, therefore making it gluten free if that’s a concern for you.  It’s not for me, I just prefer to eat healthy and try new things!

Check out the recipe here!  Give the rest of Leanne’s blog a look too.  It quickly becoming one of my favorites!  She has tons of great recipe ideas.

I used the recipe as a guide and changed it up how I wanted to, but not much really.  Everything is the same except that I took a bag of frozen cauliflower florets and boiled them until soft, pureed them in the food processor (which sadly died during the making of this meal, it will be missed).  After pureeing I added the milk/cheese/egg and blended it all together.  Then I transferred the quinoa and cheese mixture to a large bowl and stirred it all up.  Lastly I cooked up a bag of frozen broccoli and stirred that in before putting it all into the oven.  The only other real change was that I added two cups of cheese rather than the suggested 1 1/2 cups.  You can never have too much cheese!

quinoa mac and cheese2

Before Baking

quinoa mac and cheese

After Baking

 

And, the final product!  It is really good!  I guess I’d say that you can tell it’s not your standard mac and cheese, but it’s too good to care.  Give it a try, especially if you’ve never tried quinoa before.  I think you’ll really like it.

Post Juice Fast

23 Aug

Yay for solid food!  Although, I have to tell you, so far it’s not tasted nearly as good as I had imagined it would in my head.  Starting out fairly slow though.  My breakfast was an orange, and I just got done making my lunch, my portabella pizza that I’ve been craving this whole time.  It was pretty delicious, but still not real pizza.

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Portabella Mushroom “Pizza”

1 Portabella Mushroom

Marinara Sauce

Mozzarella Cheese

Spinach

Brush enough olive oil to coat each side of  the portabella.  Sprinkle with garlic powder or any other seasonings you want to use.  Then place into the oven, set to broil, five minutes on each side.  Remove from oven and add marinara sauce, cheese, and any other toppings you want on there.  Add back into the oven and keep a close eye on it so that the cheese doesn’t burn.  Heat just until sauce is hot and cheese is melted.

Ok, now the grand totals for my weight loss!  As you know I started out at 146.4 and my final weigh in this morning was 134.8.  That’s a total weight loss of 11.6lbs!  I also measured my stomach, hips, and thighs, and I lost a total of 4 1/2 inches.  To put it into another perspective, my BMI went from 20.42 to 18.8.  That’s a big difference, and it gives you more of an idea since that takes into account height and weight, not just weight.

I’m happy with my results!  I’m really hoping that I will be able to keep most of the weight off.  I realize that there will be some weight gain just due to the fact that I’m eating solid foods again, and they take some time to travel through the body.  I plan on still drinking juices from time to time, maybe even one a day.  I think it’s a good way to get all of my fruits and veggies. 

Would I do another juice fast?  I would have to say yes.  It’s been a little challenging to not eat food, but overall my experience was not a bad one.  I’m thankful for the fact that my stomach has shrunk down again.  I know that it doesn’t take that much food to fill my stomach.  I just need to remember to eat a little, and save the rest for later.  That’s a tough one because I love food.  But I’m going to do my best!

How Many Times Does Stieg Larsson Mention Coffee?

15 Feb

Stieg Larsson is the author of The Girl Who series, which includes The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest.  If you have read those books, or even just one of them, I’m sure you must have noticed the fact that they mention coffee about a million times in each book.  The books are all set in Sweden, and according to Wikipedia Sweden is one of the heaviest coffee-drinking countries in the world.  I guess that explains it, at least partially.  I think I could get used to Sweden just based on their coffee consumption!  Maybe I need to plan a trip there!

So, I decided to see just how many times coffee is mentioned in each book, just out of my own curiosity.  Luckily I have a kindle that allows me to search for a word, otherwise there’s no way I’d set out to try to find out if they were paper copies.  Here are the results:

Dragon Tattoo

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo: 118

played with fire

The Girl Who Played With Fire: 107

The_Girl_Who_Kicked_the_Hornets_Nest

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest: 103

That’s a grand total of 328 times that the word coffee is mentioned in the series!  I wonder if there are any other books out there where one word is so common (and no I don’t mean words like, the, and, of, it, etc).  I’m sure there are, but I can’t think of any. 

I think one of the reasons I noticed it every single time they went to brew some coffee is because I love coffee!  Just reading the books my mouth was watering each time they mentioned it.  I was shocked to find that they would get home super late from a long day at the office, or whatever had been going on that day, and they would go immediately to make coffee.  Morning, noon, night, middle of the night, always having coffee, with open-faced sandwiches of course!

I think I’m going to go make some coffee now!

coffee