My Attempt at Whole30 #2

I’m attempting to do my second Whole30. During my first Whole30 in the beginning of 2017 I realized that I totally emotionally eat. I was in denial. I thought emotional eating was eating sweets, like cookies, candy, or junk food like chips or cheese it’s – but no. Emotional eating can come in all shapes and sizes. For me, it’s portion control and meals throughout the day.

On tough days at work, I would drive home from work and think about how nice it would be to have garlic bread, a glass of wine, and eggplant parmesan. I learned that the Whole30 is very similar to the mindful eating exercise that I’ve done in a couple meditation retreats. The Whole30 for me brought this incredible awareness of where my food comes from or what’s in it and how I look at food.

I’m excited to pay attention to the thoughts that come up during this next journey. I’ll welcome any cravings that come up as my old friend and embrace them.

What’s helpful for me is to meal prep and recipe prep – there are days that I will come home from work hungry and if dinner isn’t planned, that is when food choices go out the window.

Meal prepping and planning is your best friend on a Whole30 — actually in general if you want to have healthy eating habits. I will meal prep for the next day after dinner and in the morning before work. I make enough dinner to have leftovers the next day for lunch and that seems to help. Here is a pic of the recipe prep I’ve done (ignore the spelling and hand writing) – I’ll refer to it every couple of days and go shopping once or twice a week.

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Pulled Pork Bulgogi

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I really hate leftovers but I also really like saving money and having food on hand after a busy day. I also like meal prepping. I made some pulled pork earlier in the week and had enough for another dinner but wanted to make something new and was feeling a bowl / Asian inspired meal. To turn a standard pulled pork into something else, I added another seasoning and made a sauce to go with it (this is a good trick if you’re cooking for yourself and maybe one other person). I have a lot of ladies who cook for themselves and often express the dilemma of cooking so much food for one person.

Pulled Pork Bulgogi

Chinese 5 Spice Pulled Pork

I’m refraining from measurements here, you can add the flavors to taste and it depends on how much pork you have left. We had ¾ of a pound left.

  • Pulled pork (leftovers)
  • Chinese 5 spice to taste
  • A dash Sesame Oil –only for flavor, use it sparingly.

Sweet and Sticky Sauce (adapted from Primal Palate) – Serves 4

  • ¾ Cup Coconut Aminos
  • 1/8 TSP Fish Sauce
  • 2 Cloves of Minced Garlic
  • 1/3 TSP Ground Ginger

Coconut Lime Cauli-Rice

  • Riced Cauliflower about 4 cups (I’m lazy and buy it already riced)
  • 1 tablespoon Coconut Oil
  • 1 Lime
  • Handful Shredded Coconut
  • Himalayan Salt to taste

Toppings

  • 1 or 2 Chopped Green Onions
  • Sesame Seeds for topping
  • Kimchee
  • Chili Garlic Sauce for spice

Cooking time – 30 minutes

Start the sauce first, in a sauté pan, on medium – medium high heat, add ¾ cup of coconut aminos, the fish sauce, ginger, and garlic, let bubble, reduce the heat and stir so it doesn’t stick to the pan and let it reduce about 10-15 minutes. I was hungry and mine ended up reducing to ½ cup. I’m sure I could have left it on the burner longer. When done, pour the sauce into a container so you can pour or spoon it easily on your pork.

Using the left over pulled pork, I added a little bit of sesame oil and about ½ a teaspoon – 1 teaspoon of Chinese 5 Spice to some left over pulled pork. The pork roast I bought was about 2 lbs and I had about ¾ lbs left. Add the pork to the sauté pan used to cook the sauce and let it cook. The temperature should be medium-medium high. While it’s heating up, cook the cauliflower rice. Heat the pan to medium, add a tablespoon of coconut oil to the sauce pan, add some unsweetened shredded coconut – watch it so it doesn’t burn, add the riced cauliflower, salt and stir, then add the juice of one lime. Cook the rice through.

Remove everything from the heat and plate, topping with the sauce followed by chopped green onions, red chili garlic sauce, sesame seeds and kimchee.

Enjoy!!

WTF Are These? Peanut Butter Chocolate Brownie Cookies. aka a Dream Come True.

After two margaritas and some tacos I decided it was time to bake cookies.

I’m not down with grains and refined sugar, but I am down with chocolate and peanut butter (best combo ever). I’m also down with brownies and cookies. You see where this is going. I wanted both. So I made cr-ow-nies.

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I trolled the interwebs and found two recipes that fit my vision: didn’t take forever and didn’t call for a ton of ingredients. I was able to add my spin on them and out came these sexi nuggets of pure chocolaty chunky peanut buttery goodness. When I asked my husband to try them, he chewed, went silent and said…whoa WTF. That was a good sign. I’ve also had 3 in less than 12 hours.

If you have nut allergies – look away. These are not for you. I’m sorry. The cookies are a combo of raw cashews, cocoa powder and peanut butter. If you’re full on paleo, omit the peanut butter – tahini could work (although I haven’t tried it). The best part: they take max 30 minutes, start to finish.

I used my Vitamix for these. So you get little chunks of cashews in every bite. When you’re blending, you might need to stop, push the mixture down towards the blades and blend again. Just check the mix to make sure you are good with the consistency. It’s chunky, but raw cashews are pretty soft so they break down. I’m thinking a small food processor can do the job for the wet stuff + cashews. I worked really hard for a C in chemistry, I’m not super precise in measuring things — so you’ll always see a little wiggle room / go with your gut directions.

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These make about 20, 2″cookies, I used a teaspoon. I’m sure if you are super precise you can get 24 out of the batch.

On to the baking!!!!

1 cup raw cashews

1 egg

1/3 cup cocoa powder (unsweetened)

1/3 cup maple syrup

2 tablespoons coconut oil (melted – get your MCT’s)

2 tablespoons peanut butter (try to avoid peanut butter with palm oil – environmental reasons)

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla

handful of chocolate chips ( I use Enjoy Life)

To cook:

Pre-heat your oven to 350 F, line a baking sheet with a spilat (one of my favorite kitchen things) or parchment paper and a few sprays of olive oil or coconut oil so the cookies won’t stick, add the cashews, egg, maple syrup, melted coconut oil, and vanilla to a blender or food processor – the mix won’t be velvety smooth, blend until kind of smooth, add the cocoa powder, baking soda, blend a little more, add the peanut butter and blend a few seconds longer.  Spoon the cookies onto the baking sheet and top with the chocolate chips (I also stirred some into the mix, but found topping the cookies with the chocolate chips looked better). Bake for 10 minutes. Enjoy!