30 Day Paleo Challenge: Day 11

Two nights ago, I made a super tasty dinner.  I’ll tell you about it because it was also day 11 lunch.

paleodinner2

Seriously, it was ready in about 15 minutes from start to finish, and I thought it was pretty tasty.

Pork Loin and Sauteed Vegetables

Few slices of pork loinMixed vegetables of choice*
Garlic powder
Salt
Pepper
Olive Oil

That’s all you need.  Season pork loin with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  Heat some oil (about 1/4 a tbsp is good for 5 pieces) in a pan on medium/high heat.  Add pork.  Cook 2-3 minutes per side.  Set aside.

porkloin

Add vegetables to the same pan.  Season with salt, pepper and garlic powder.  Sautee until tender.   Serve and enjoy!

*I used the asparagus stir fry mix from Trader Joe’s, but I won’t lie, while it’s convenient, the asparagus was really tough.  A lot of it was the tough ends that I would cut off on asparagus.  Half the time I felt like I was eating twigs and branches, so maybe steer clear of that?

Quick, easy and tasty.  And I always make too much for one person, so there were plenty of leftovers.

paleodinner

Day 11 was an interesting day.  Apparently, March is the month of Karla trying new things, because  I went to Bikram Yoga for the first time.  My co-worker talked me into going with her, since they offer new students 2 weeks of unlimited classes for $20.  I figured why not?

So the studio is located in The Camp (if you’re an OC local), and it was interesting.  I’ll start by saying, the place is stinky, which is totally expected given the heat and sweat and warm bodies.  Definitively, not cute.  I had been having anxiety all day about it.  I thought for sure I would die.  But good news, guys!  I didn’t die!

In fact it was sort of fun.  I’m not sure I love it, but I’ll definitely have to give it another try, especially since I’ve got two weeks of classes.

I will say I came home with a pretty bad headache that lasted pretty much all night and an overwhelming desire to take a shower.  I don’t think I’ve ever been that sweaty in my life.  As a self-proclaimed “yoga hater,” I’ll say I definitely enjoyed it more than I disliked it.

After a much needed shower, I surprisingly wasn’t hungry!  Can you believe it?  So I decided to make a dinner that takes a while and it included sweet potato fries!

bakedsweetpotatoefries

Apparently I’m late to the game, but if you cook your sweet potato fries on a cooling rack (over a baking sheet that is) you get crispy, evenly baked fries!  Who knew?

So along with my tasty, crispy fries, I had cauliflower puree (because I’m OBSESSED) and some rotisserie chicken left over from Sunday.  Delicious.  Simple.  I swear the cauliflower puree was the tastiest thing on the plate!

paleodinner3

On nights like this, when I’m not starving and I have a tasty dinner, I might even like Paleo… That’s probably because it just feels like I’m eating normal food I like, not making myself eat one thing when I really want another.

Have you ever tried Bikram Yoga?  Love it? Hate it? 

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30 Day Paleo Challenge: Day 2

It’s only been two days, but I think during the week, this challenge won’t be that bad for a few reasons:

  1. I have a schedule, and I’m busy at work.  That means I’m not sitting at home boredom eating.  Most days I look at the clock around 12:30 and think How is it past noon already?  Time flies.
  2. I’m totally ok with eating the same thing everyday for breakfast and lunch.

I had yogurt, banana and almond butter every single day for months.  Having a paleo pancake and a green smoothie is perfectly fine by me.  You’ll probably get tired of reading about it before I get tired of eating it.

paleopancake

Day 2 lunch was pretty similar to Day 1, and Day 3 (today) will be exactly the same as Day 2.

lunch

Ground Turkey with leftover sweet potato “home fries” and cabbage with lime and salt (I love this combo! My mom made it all the time when I was little and I’ve loved it ever since).  I also packed an apple, some strawberries and some cuties.

My strategy is to overpack snacks to avoid having one of those moments where I feel like eating the world but there’s nothing healthy/paleo to eat.  So far it’s been fine, I ended up only eating one of the cuties and had the apple after dinner.

For dinner, I was at my sister’s house, because my nephew is just so stinkin’ cute it was time to pay them a visit.

After Graham had his dinner of breastmilk (or formula? I actually have no idea), we had shrimp with butternut squash.  Pretty tasty.

So that way Day 2.  Let’s hope Day 3 goes as well as the past two.  I have a potentially EPIC dinner planned tonight.  Or it might be meh.  I’ll keep you posted!

30 Day Paleo Challenge: Day 1

Today is Day 1 of the 30 Day Paleo Challenge!

30daypaleochallenge

I’m psyched.  I’m sure my family, friends, co-workers, twitter followers, etc. are tired of hearing about it already, but I’m into it.

This morning I felt a little unprepared to begin the challenge.  Not because I wanted a hamburger, but this morning after I made my green smoothie and paleo pancake for breakfast…

paleobreakfast

I realized I was out of vegetables.  I put away an entire bag of Costco spinach by myself in less than a week.

Womp. But I made due with what I had.

day1lunch

Last night I cooked some ground turkey with onions and peppers.  Today I mixed it with frozen peas and carrots then topped it with avocado (ended up eating 1/4).  For a filling, paleo-friendly lunch.  I also had a carrot and some strawberries.  I packed some cuties in case I got hungry, but I only had 1 (wasn’t even hungry just wanted something sweet).

Looking at my lunch, it reminded me of when I was in grad school and I was too busy to cook and too cheap to buy lunch so I would pack a clif bar, a carrot and an apple and call it a day.

Today was slightly different.  My lunch today was definitely more filling.

Around 6pm, I thought it’d be a good idea to get dinner started.  If there’s one thing I’m realizing it’s that this paleo challenge is going to make me have an actual dinner.  Ordinarily, I’m used to just sort of having snacks for dinner (i.e. tortillas with beans and cheese, or random bites of left overs with a handful of chocolate chips… not my finer moments).

So today I decided to keep up with the use-what-you-have trend.  Over the weekend, since I baked a million pies (or 3), I had 5 egg whites that needed to get used.  So dinner was themed around that…

dinner

Scrambled Egg Whites with Peppers and Onions and Spicy Sweet Potato “Home Fries”

Now these home fries aren’t really home fries.  They’re just super quick sweet potatoes that I think are tasty.

What You’ll Need to serve 1-3 people:

  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 1/4 onion
  • 1 mini sweet pepper or 1/4 red/yellow bell pepper
  • Salt, Pepper, Cumin, Chili Powder, Paprika, Cayenne

Step 1: Microwave sweet potato until cooked (depending on size 5 mins ish? I think mine took 6 minutes)
Step 2: Chop some onions and peppers and add to a pan with a bit of oil.
Step 3: Chop the sweet potato into chunks and add to the pan with some salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder, paprika and cayenne (all to taste).
Step 4: Turn up the heat, once the sweet potatoes are browned and sort of crisp, serve with your scrambled egg whites!

spicysweetpotato

Ta-da! Dinner!  I ended up topping it with the 1/4 of the avocado that I didn’t eat earlier.  Pretty tasty.

I won’t lie.  I really wanted to add ketchup to this mix, but alas, not paleo friendly.  Also this was a HUGE meal.  5 egg whites is a lot of egg.  Just saying.

How about you?  Did you make dinner tonight?  What’d you make?

Coconut Curry Stew and My New Love

Since moving, I had to start from scratch.

I bought furniture.  So now I have 1 bed, 1 nightstand, 1 table and 1 dresser.

I have 1 large plate, 1 small plate, 4 bowls, 2 cups, 1 mug, 1 old frying pan and this:

This is my new love.  It’s amazing.  Cast iron is every overly-domestic girl’s dream.

So when you have someone over for dinner and you only really have one plate (though luckily a few bowls) and one pot, start from scratch with fresh ingredients.  It’s easier than it sounds, I promise.

Wondering what to make?

Coconut Curry Stew, naturally.

It might wow your guest.  Who knows?  He might just be polite.  But either way, make this stew.  It’s easy, delicious, healthy, and requires minimal utensils without sacrificing flavor.

Coconut Curry Stew

2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 carrots, chopped
2 sweet potatoes, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 can diced tomatoes
3 cloves of garlic, minced
3 cups vegetable broth
2 tbsp curry powder (or more or less depending on how you like it)
1 can light coconut milk
1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Heat oil in a pot.  Add onions, carrots, sweet potatoes, bell pepper and jalapeno.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are translucent.  Add garlic, cook for an additional minute, then add tomatoes.  Add broth and curry and simmer for about 20 minutes or until sweet potatoes soften.  Add coconut milk, garbanzo beans, salt and pepper.  Simmer for an additional 10 minutes.  Stir in cilantro and serve.

I served it with some sauteed kale.  I thought it was pretty tasty and super easy to make.

You can store left overs in a jar.  That’s how I roll.

Just keeping it real… or maybe I have no other storage containers…