Clean Eating, Health, Health and fitness, Uncategorized

Meatball Problems

I don’t know what the hell is wrong with ground chicken but it’s not normal. You know that rumor that a certain fast food chain’s chicken nuggets are made out of pink goop? article-0-1B2DDB7B00000578-134_634x630

Photo courtesy of http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2551238/McDonalds-reveal-EXACTLY-chicken-nuggets-note-not-pink-goop.html

It’s not goop, that’s fricken ground chicken!

I tried to make these chicken meatballs stuffed with goat cheese. Key word: “tried”. I used ground up rolled oats in place of breadcrumbs and added 1/8 cup of almond milk instead of 1/4 cup of regular, but otherwise followed the recipe to a T. The mixture was very wet and sticky and I knew there was no way of forming little balls out of this goop!

I ground up extra oats to, hopefully, dry the mixture out a bit, but it still wasn’t forming balls. I dumped all the oats in my cupboard into the blender and ground them up but still ended up with a giant bowl of pink goop that would not form.

Ready to give up and order a pizza, my chef husband jumps in to save the day.

He threw the large glob in a large skillet and scramble fried it until it resembled crumbled sausage.

Meanwhile I made a basic tomato sauce:
In olive oil, sauté one medium, diced white onion and two minced cloves of garlic in a large pot on medium for 3 minutes. Add one diced red pepper and continue to sauté until softened. Add a 28oz can of crushed tomatoes, 1 tbsp Italian seasoning, one bay leaf, pinch of salt and a pinch of pepper and simmer for half an hour.

I asked my Facebook friends for help picking a delicious alternative to white pasta and, thankfully, my good friends Jax and Brooke pointed me in the direction of brown rice pasta. I tossed the brown rice linguini with the chicken, the sauce, and the goat cheese, topped with fresh parsley and grated Grana Padano.

It was fantastic! Thank you Jax and Brooke! The brown rice pasta tastes like the white wheat pasta! And if you use the gluten free rolled oats instead of breadcrumbs you have yourself a delicious gluten free meal.

20140804-201239-72759832.jpgYou can feel good about going in for seconds of this clean eating pasta dish.

Do you have a favourite gluten free, go to? Leave me a comment!

Standard
Clean Eating, Health, Health and fitness

2 Month Mark

20140801-081207-29527423.jpg

I was so excited to see this on the scale this morning! Especially after the Blizzards we splurged on last night! If you remember, I started this clean eating experiment at 135.6 and am now down 10lbs in just 2 months while remaining quite sedentary.

I also have a TON of energy today. Here’s how the day went:

7:30am           Get up early and eat my strawberry overnight oats for breakfast.

8:00am          Half-ass watch Rachel Ray while contemplating my new blog post.

9:00am          Enter a few invoices, print off a couple cheques for suppliers and gather the necessary paperwork for a trip to the office.

10:00am        Pack baby in carseat, grab diaper bag and laptop bag and head out the door.

10:01am         Lock the door

10:01:30am   Baby loudly expels his breakfast into his diaper.

10:02:45am   Unlock door and go inside to change baby.

10:45am          Arrive at the office and let co-workers coo over the baby while casually talking about dropping our children on their heads (by accident) and the different types of poopy diapers.

11:15am           Said baby starts fussing and boss is no where to be found to touch base with before the long weekend, so I pack him up to leave (the baby, not my boss).

11:16am           Boss arrives. Unpack baby.

11:45am           Finish touching base with my boss before the long weekend then head home where I completed some more work, getting statements out to all of our customers.

1:15pm              Realize I haven’t had lunch yet so I make fried eggs on whole grain toast with grilled tomatoes, spinach and hummus.

1:20pm             Sit down to eat said lunch.

1:21pm              Baby decides he’s hungry. Feed said baby.

1:35pm              Eat cold lunch. It’s still good.

1:50pm             Get some house work done. Cleaned the kitchen, cleaned both bathrooms, tidied the living room and bedroom, and did a load of laundry.

2:30pm             Enjoy nice play shesh with the little guy.

2:45pm              Monster wants to eat again.

3:00pm              Said monster finally falls asleep.

4:45pm              Fold laundry. Child still sleeping.

4:57pm              Realise I forgot to send out some important work emails before the long weekend. Quickly start up the computer and fire them off. Baby still sleeping

5:00pm              Tired, starving husband arrives home from work. My little angel is STILL sleeping.

5:15pm               Make vegetarian black bean chilli from the clean eating challenge.

6:00pm               Serve up said chilli.

6:01pm               Child wants to feed again.

6:30pm               Finally wolf down dinner. Husband goes in for seconds.

7:30pm               Husband baths the baby while I clean up the kitchen and watch Jeopardy (it’s my guilty pleasure).

8:00pm              Husband wants to retire early but I still have so much energy so I decide to write this post.

8:05pm               The monster wants the boob again.

 

It is now almost 9:00pm and I am just completing this post. The terror is driving my husband nuts, as he is trying to relax and fall asleep, so I better sign off for today.

By the way, I accomplished all of this without any coffee!

 

Standard
Health, Health and fitness, Uncategorized

Confessions

I have a confession… I haven’t been so good lately with my clean eating.

There were temptations lurking all around my kitchen just begging to be consumed. And I really wanted a steak… or three.

Since starting my clean eating experiment I have cheated in the following ways:

  1. I had one ginger ale per week in weeks 2, 3 and 4. Sometimes I sneak a sip of my husband’s coke.
  2. I drink beer once in a while. Like, one after my son goes to bed and only two or three times a week. And its not some gluten free, craft beer either. It’s good ol’ fashioned Lucky Lager. (Hey, I am an islander.)
  3. I sometimes skip meals and my snacks have become non existent. This has only been happening for the last week or so.
  4. I bought some steaks two weeks ago and we BBQ’d a couple of them up. They were so good I had them again the following week. No the cow wasn’t grass fed. Actually, I don’t know what the cow was eating. Probably a shit ton of hormones and chemicals.
  5. Last night I had white bread…AND IT WAS DELICIOUS!
  6. Last night I also had enough meat to last for a whole week. There were prawn skewers and chicken covered in bruschetta and thick juicy steaks! In my defence, we were at someone else’s house and you can’t turn down what your host puts in front of you, it would be rude…There was also chocolate bunt cake.
  7. I had white pasta, but you already knew that if you have been keeping up with my blog. Go to the post about Day 30 to find out why I will keep white pasta in my pantry.
  8. I drink coffee. Once a day. I need that morning jolt! I finished the artificial coffee creamer I had left in my fridge and have vowed to never buy it again.

This last week has been the hardest trying to stick with a clean eating plan because we have had family in town visiting and there was a lot of eating outside of my kitchen and only so much I could control.

Also, I think my son is teething and he’s turned into a little psycho, making my nerves a little frayed and little to no time to do elaborate meal planning. I’m surprised (and quite proud) I haven’t hit up McDonald’s yet.

Even though I am down to 127.2 lbs (from 135.6 lbs), I have been feeling a little run down lately and that just goes to show you how much our diet affects our energy stores. I’ve realized that, if I am not careful with what I choose to ingest, it doesn’t just affect me, but my son as well.

I feel like it was easier when I had the meals already planned out for me and so now I am on the hunt for a new clean eating challenge. Perhaps, when you are perusing Pintrest, you could keep an eye out for me for a new one or, if you already have one leave me the link in the comments. Thanks for reading!

 

20140701-203832-74312411.jpg

 

 

Standard
Health, Health and fitness, Uncategorized

Chickpea Super Bowl

Sometimes I feel like I’m in the Chopped kitchen or on Master Chef when I’m going through my fridge and cupboards looking for something to make for dinner. If you’ve never seen the shows, contestants get these mystery baskets with five or so ingredients that you wouldn’t think go together and they have to come up with dishes for the judges.

Tonight was one of those nights. I had no meats thawed, hardly any produce and no clue as to what to make for dinner. I was on Instagram, scrolling through my home page, and I saw a recipe from @SkinnyKitchen that made me look twice: a chickpea avocado bowl.

I had all of the ingredients minus the nutritional yeast (apparently it acts like cheese for vegans), so I dove right in. As I was preparing the components to this masterpiece I realized that my avocado had passed into the inedible stage and so, I decided to take this dish in a different direction. Here’s my version:

Chickpea Super Bowl Serves 2

Ingredients:
1 cup quinoa, uncooked
1/2 cup brown rice, uncooked
1 tsp butter, grass fed or vegan is best
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 onion, diced
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 tomato, diced
1 tbsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp salt
Fresh ground pepper
2 generous handfuls spinach
2 oz feta, crumbled
2 tbsp hummus (I used red pepper hummus but any flavor will do)
2 tbsp parsley, chopped
Juice of 1 lemon

In a medium sauce pan, combine brown rice, 1.5 cups of water, 1 tsp of butter and 1/4 tsp salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to med-low and cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes until water is all absorbed. Fluff with a fork.

Meanwhile, bring quinoa and 1.5 cups of water to a boil. Reduce heat to med-low and simmer, uncovered, for 12 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes and fluff with a fork.

While the grains are cooking heat 1 tsp of olive oil in a skillet. Add diced onions and sauté for about 3 minutes. Add chickpeas and tomatoes and all of the seasonings. Sauté for about 5 minutes then add the spinach and feta. Continue to cook until spinach has wilted.

In each serving bowl, layer quinoa, brown rice then one tbsp of hummus. Top with the chickpea mixture, fresh parsley, and a squeeze of lemon.

That’s it that’s all! Hope you enjoy.

20140721-212807-77287830.jpg

Standard
Health, Health and fitness

Chicken, Spinach, Tomato and Feta Fettuccine

Recipe time!

I had some left over bbq chicken in my fridge, only one breast, and I was trying to figure out the best way to take that small amount of chicken and stretch it further to feed two people. I chose to make a pasta dish since the carbs would make us feel fuller.

You can use plain cooked chicken and any type of pasta you wish. I only had fettuccine (white flour) but in order to make this a little cleaner you could chose whole wheat pasta (if you like that sort of thing) or even make your own! UPDATE: I heard from a couple trusted friends that brown rice pasta is really good. I found some in the healthy section of the pasta isle in my regular grocery store.

The sauce will thicken if you let sit for longer but I was so hungry I just used a slotted spoon to dish up.

This recipe makes two healthy sized portions.

Chicken, Spinach, Tomato and Feta Fettuccine

2 servings of pasta, cooked al dente (any cut will do, I like longer cuts like spaghetti or linguini but only had fettuccine), reserve some of the pasta water for the sauce

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 white onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 generous handfuls spinach, about 2 cups packed
1 can diced tomatoes, no salt added
1 chicken breast, cooked
2 oz feta cheese (goat cheese would also work and make the sauce creamier)
2 tbsp Italian seasoning
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1/8 tsp salt
Fresh ground pepper to taste

Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente (chewy but firm)

Meanwhile, in a skillet, heat olive oil and add garlic and onion. Sauté until soft and fragrant (about 3 minutes).

Add spinach and sauté until wilted (1 minute).

Add canned tomatoes and a 1/4 cup of the reserved pasta cooking water. The starchy water will thicken your sauce. Bring to a boil then simmer for about 10 minutes until sauce thickens.

Add chicken, cooked pasta, feta and seasonings and toss until all incorporated and warmed through. Add fresh parsley at the end and toss.

20140720-215339-78819205.jpg

Standard
Health, Uncategorized

Day 19: Fish Cooked In Paper Rocks!

I used up the last of my farmer’s market strawberries and made us both overnight oats for breakfast.

After cleaning out my In laws’ crawl space my MIL made sandwiches for lunch – ham, tomato and romaine lettuce on sprouted bread for me.

Throughout the clean out, I snacked on a bowl of mixed nuts and chocolate chips (I’m pretty sure they were dark chocolate).

I found this recipe in a Martha Stewart magazine. Not only was it fantastic tasting and perfectly cooked, but it looked like the picture in the magazine too! But of course I forgot to take a picture to prove it. I swear it did!

After dinner snack was a golden delicious apple with almond butter and two slices of multi-grain toast with chia jam. I love that stuff. My husband is now hooked on almond butter. Yay! Gone are the days of the boxed granola bars! We’re getting there, anyways.

Standard
Health, Uncategorized

Day 14: Last But Not Least

Today is be final day of the clean eating challenge. I have to say I’m feeling very thrilled, albeit a little nervous about what’s to come. It’s so easy to just give in and get that milk chocolate bar that’s 3 for $2 AND Haggen Das is on sale this week.

Anyways back to Day 14. I wasn’t even going to try and attempt an omelet today; my last attempts were laughable. I opted for a scramble instead, since it was going to end up that way anyways. I added a couple tablespoons of black beans and diced tomato to the onions and feta and only used two eggs. It turned out better than any omelet I had made in the last two weeks:

20140627-115635-42995529.jpg

For lunch it was mini portobello pizzas. I didn’t have any shallots but had a white onion in the fridge and thought that would be an ok substitute. Nope. They all burned when I roasted my tray of portobellos, tomatoes and onions. But the pizzas turned out just as well. In fact I would make them again.

I skipped my afternoon snack again today and substituted a glass of wine. Fruit for a vegetable, right? It has been a long two weeks. After wine we went to a friends house because another friend was in town and we hadn’t seen him in a while. We agreed on a curfew but by the time we got home and made dinner, it was 9:00pm when we sat down to eat it.

And that was that. I sat up late into the night pouring over groceries store flyers planning out my shopping trip for tomorrow. We have seven different places to get groceries plus a farmer’s market everyday of the week within a half hours drive. My brain was on over load so I went to bed without posting an entry.

I honestly feel so much better after these last two weeks. My stomach is digesting as it should and I haven’t really had any troubles pooping. (For anyone who knows me, this is quite the accomplishment). My skin is clearing up without using any harsh products on it. (During pregnancy I broke out like a teenager). I’ve dropped 6.8lbs and am siting pretty at 128.8lbs (morning weight, before breakfast). I don’t feel as energized as the BuzzFeed GIFs say I would, but I’m a new mom juggling a baby that needs to be fed every two hours, that gets angry if he’s not in a constant state of motion. (Please note: I do not literally juggle my baby). Most importantly I feel good about my decision to eat healthier and make changes that benefit my family. I can’t wait for my morning cup of coffee!

Standard