Breakfast: We began with a hearty bowl of homemade granola topped with sliced bananas and blueberries. Oh and some unsweetened almond milk.
It was quite a filling breakfast and even after my workout, I was full.
Lunch: I had a late lunch that matched The Philosopher’s packed items. We ate lettuce wraps with fresh veggies and homemade hummus (I will share various recipe options soon!), quinoa salad (lime juice, tomatoes, red peppers, cilantro), and a granny smith apple with almond butter. According to The Philosopher, we never have to buy peanut butter again, regardless of the outcome of the diet. He is hooked on almond butter! I also packed a few cherry tomatoes and broccoli florets in my backpack to get me through class. Tonight I had a Happy Hour event for an organization I used to work for. While it was great talking and seeing everyone again, it was hard to watch everyone else eat pizza and drink beer! I rushed home to make dinner before the temptation grew too great.
Dinner: I adapted a recipe for Spinach with Coconut (or Spinach Thoren) from “Savoring the Spice Coast” by Maya Kaimal. Here’s what I did:
Prepare 5 oz (half a bag) of spinach and one bunch of kale. Dice one onion or shallot. In a bowl combine 3/4c grated unsweetened coconut with 1 t cumin, 1/8 t cayenne, 1/4 t tumeric, 1 fresh green chili sliced lengthwise, and 1 t garam masala (you can usually find this in the spice section, I made my own. See recipe below). I added 1/4 cup of water and mixed this well.
In a wok or large skillet, I melted 2T coconut oil until melted. Next, I added 1t mustard seeds and cooked them until they began to pop. I added the onion and sauted just until tender. Next, I added the kale and cooked until wilted, then I added the spinach. When the spinach just began to wilt, I added the bowl of spices and coconut and continued to cook until the greens were tender. I cooked brown rice earlier in the day (1 c rice, 2 c water, 1 t safflower oil) and refrigerated. I tossed the cooked rice with the greens and coconut mixture to coat and warm completely. I would suggest removing the green chili before serving (oops! Lesson learned!). Even with bites of chili, this was yummy! I think I caught The Philosopher sneaking thirds!
So far, the best thing about this diet is the coconut oil. Who knew that lurking in my supermarket was this luxurious fat? Tomorrow it will be used in a baking experiment. You can vote, apple pie or maple bars?
Thoughts: Today’s menu is easily reflected in many that we have eaten in the past. Overall things didn’t feel strange today. So far, the hardest thing is when I wanted a little snack: a handful of potato chips, a chocolate chip cookie, or a cup of coffee on my way to class are all off limits. I think the key will be to build up allowable snacks in the house so we don’t feel so boxed in with our choices.
The other important news is that tomorrow I will be cooking with my friend Cathy, owner of Photo Kitchen. We will prepare dinner (and dessert!) together and she will be on hand to actually provide professional photos! About time this amateur photographer asked for help, huh? Stay tuned!
Grind 4 whole pieces of star anise in a coffee grinder (or a mortar and pestle) and measure out 2 teaspoons. Reserve the rest for a future use (I don’t yet know what that is–sorry!). Grind 2t fennel seeds. Combine ground star anise, ground fennel seeds, 2t cinnamon, 2t ground clove, 2t ground cardamom, and 1t ground nutmeg. Combine and store for up to 6 months.