Sunday, January 20, 2013

Well that sucked...

My First 30 Days of 2013 were more "utter failure" than the "zen yoga master eating clean and peacefully" that I'd intended.  For the first two weeks (yes WEEKS), I was suffering from what ended up being a nasty case of bronchitis. I've honestly never been so sick before.  The benefit was that I wasn't really eating much at all, so it was easy to stay paleo. And I did yoga every day for those first two weeks, even on my bronchitis death bed!  But it all went to hell in a hand basket when I headed off to San Diego and Las Vegas last week for work.  I was feeling much better, but my schedule was nuts.  So I ended up skipping out on a few yoga workouts and my eating went completely into the crapper.

So now I'm back, I'm fully healthy, I have a three day weekend, and I'm making use of the extra time to prep a whole bunch of stuff for the coming week so I have no excuses.  I'm on the road again for work but it's just two day trips.  My crockpot is going to be working overtime this week, but that's a good thing.  Here's the menu.  Stuff in bold is what I prepped ahead of time.

Breakfast for the week will be egg sandwiches on paleo biscuits (from a mix made by White Lion Baking Co.) with pork breakfast sausages.


Lunch - Potato, leek, and coconut soup.  I've come around to the relatively new belief in the paleo world that regular white potatoes can be paleo if eaten in moderation.  Hate on that if you'd like.  This soup is tasty.  The Kennebec potatoes and leeks that are in it are from our winter CSA share.

Dinner - Slow-cooker pulled pork with coffee rub.  I couldn't find a responsibly raised pork shoulder, so I just trimmed off all the fat I could and loaded it up with my own coffee rub recipe.  Tomorrow, I'll add a couple cups of beef broth and turn on the crockpot on low for 8 - 10 hours.  Yummers.


Lunch - Leftover pork.  (There will probably be lots of leftover pork and I'll freeze a bunch of it for a dinner down the road.)

Dinner - Chicken curry with spinach.  This is such an easy weeknight dinner that it requires little prepping.  The spinach is from our CSA and is ALWAYS gritty no matter how many times I wash, so I'm doing multiple wash and dries of the leaves.  Other than that, this dish consists of diced chicken, sliced carrots, and a bag of frozen sliced peppers plus coconut milk and some red curry paste. 


Lunch - Eating on the road in NYC (so probably Chipotle)

Dinner - Chocolate Chili.  I make this chili in the crockpot so that the flavors meld together all day long.  I also double the tomatoes and leave out the water.  To prep, I browned the meat today and put it in a freezer back with all the spices, onion, garlic, and tomato paste.  That went into the freezer and I'll pull it out on Tuesday night to thaw, add it to the crock with the other ingredients and then put it on to cook on Wednesday morning.  I have some frozen kale that I might saute and add on top.


Lunch - leftover chili

Dinner - Broiled salmon and sauteed frozen spinach. 


Lunch - Back in NYC again (yup, Chipotle)

Dinner - Slow-cooked meatballs and sauce with sweet potato gnocchi.  I made the meatballs today, froze them on a cookie sheet, and then put them all in a freezer bag when they were fully frozen.  It's a simple recipe of ground pork and beef, diced onion, garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, and an egg and some almond meal to bind.  The sauce is store bought but was the one brand with no sugar in the ingredients.  I'll just throw two jars of it in the crock with the pre-rolled frozen meatballs and set it on low for 6-8 hours.  The gnocchi were something new for me and saying they were a bitch to make is an understatement.  I based things on this recipe, but I think if I do it again, I'll make sure to salt and mash the potatoes immediately after cooking and omit the egg.  This dough was just WAY too watery.  I used a ridiculous amount of coconut flour to keep things less sticky and they still look malformed.

Mutant sweet potato gnocchi

These are all in the freezer, laid out on cookie trays to freeze individually.  Tomorrow morning, I will transfer them to two separate freezer bags.  I have enough to feed a small army...or us, for two meals.

I'm planning on restarting my 30-day yoga challenge, but also hope to get in some gym workouts.  On the days I'm at the gym, I pledge to do 10-20 sun salutations for my yoga requirement.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

The First 30 Days: Day 1

Well here we are in Day 1 of my "First 30 Days of 2013" Challenge. I've made breakfast for the week (see recipe below!) and have been grain/dairy free all day.  I'm fighting a pretty nasty cold and my coughing has made sleep difficult.  I'm determined to muster up the energy to do my first Yogaglo class later tonight, even if it's only a 30 minute session.  I know that all of this is going to make my body much better at fighting off infections like this one.

One of my favorite ways of "keeping paleo" with my hectic work schedule is to make breakfasts in advance so that I can just grab in the morning and go.  (Lunches are usually leftovers from the previous dinner.)  The best way of stocking up on breakfasts is to make them in casserole form.  There is absolutely nothing complicated about them and they cut into easy travel-size portions.

I'm tired and sick, today, but also incredibly excited to get back in gear.  I've lost 30 lbs but have a personal goal of losing another 50. To be honest, fifty is just what I think I need to lose in order to fit into the size I'd like to be and feel healthy.  If I get to that size before I get to 50, I'll consider it a success.  Did I mention that I'm not weighing myself during this challenge?  It's going to be hard, but I'm psyched to be more tuned into how I feel than what the numbers say.

Asparagus, bacon, and caramelized onion breakfast casserole

I froze a ton of asparagus this summer but have found that it's sort of mushy thawed texture makes it really only viable in things like soups and casseroles.  One of my minor resolutions is to get through more of the fresh fruits and veg that I stockpiled over the summer, so this was a good way of getting through some of the asparagus.

2 lbs of asparagus, fresh or frozen, sliced into inch long pieces on the bias
2 small red onions sliced
10 strips of bacon
12 eggs
Garlic powder

Preheat oven to 350

Cook bacon strips over medium-high heat in a frying pan until crispy.  Remove to a plate with paper towels to collect grease.

Without removing the bacon grease from the pan, add the onions and cook on medium-low heat until soft and partially caramelized (10-15 minutes).

Add asparagus and cook until everything is warm.  In the meantime, crack eggs into a bowl and beat fully.

Slice bacon into small pieces and place all over the bottom of a 9x12 baking pan.  Spread the asparagus and onion mixture on top.  Pour eggs over everything.

Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste.

Bake for 30-40 minutes until the eggs are solid.  Slice into whatever serving size you'd like.  Individual pieces can be wrapped in double layers of plastic or parchment and frozen.