Monday, May 27, 2013

Whole 30 Wrap-Up: Day 30

It's 6:26 PM on day 30 of the Whole30 program. On one hand, I am psyched. On the other hand, I'm terrified.

Coffee Creamer No More!

I went grocery shopping for "reintroduction" foods just a little while ago, and I am amazed at how unwilling I was to put crappy food in my cart. I couldn't bring myself to buy coffee creamer; my mind said do it and my body said, "get real!" My body literally would not obey my mind's commands. I picked up several bottles of cold creamer, and decided against all of them, then headed over to the dry creamer, and was equally grossed out.

So I headed on back to the cold creamer and picked up a carton of organic half and half. I'm still not sure how my body would react. I was one of those people who said I would absolutely go back to dairy after Whole30. Today, my feeling is... not so much. I couldn't even bring myself to buy cheese. CHEESE!!!

So Maybe I'm Changed...

Maybe the Whole30 really did work. I know I slept better. A lot better. And I woke up with energy and sustained it til I crashed every night. I hate the idea of fake food, now. And this is huge coming from someone who lived off International Delight and Splenda in my coffee.

I love cooking now. I will gladly spend an hour in the kitchen cooking something delicious that's Whole30 or Paleo compliant. And I turn my nose up at the precious Power Bars I used to love.

Is this Sustainable?

I think this will last provided I continue to eat this way. The only thing I am absolutely planning to reintroduce is natural sugar. I will definitely be adding honey back in, and I can't wait to try my hand at homemade coconut milk ice cream (or even store bought varieties). I believe natural sugar is okay and a great way to sweeten treats without spiking blood sugar (unless you literally eat a spoonful of honey).

So I think it just may be possible that I could sustain this way of eating. I actually like the way I'm eating. Yes, sometimes I want a chocolate croissant or a glazed donut. But now that the stuff is just a few hours within my reach, I'm just not sure how badly I want it. Do I want it enough to buy it myself? No. Free? Maybe. But I don't want to spend money on it.

Reintroduction Plan

When I wake up in the morning, I plan to enjoy a hot cup of coffee with half and half. No sugar, no Splenda, no Stevia. Just the beautiful coffee and rich creamer. I do not know what the rest of my morning will look like, but toast and scrambled eggs is very likely. I don't normally eat bread, even before Whole30, but I always allowed it once per week.

The foods I plan to eat tomorrow at some point:

For those of you out there on Day 30 of the Whole30, congratulations!!!! It was a long, interesting ride. What did you learn? What do you think you will keep and what are you totally done with?

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Mission of the Week (MOW): Better BBQ Sauce

Today I made a delicious Paleo lunch. Mini BBQ burgers, grilled onion, and riced spiced cauliflower (just riced cauliflower with salt and red pepper flakes). I took out salad ingredients but skipped it; wasn't feeling it today.

It's okay, because the burgers and onions and cauliflower rice really was enough. The fat came from about two tablespoons of ghee that I added when sauteeing the cauliflower.

Here's the thing: The BBQ sauce was so-so. I adapted it from a very simple Paleo BBQ sauce recipe I found on the web that called for equal parts balsamic vinegar and tomato paste. I had doubts it could be so simple so I added garlic powder, spicy brown mustard, unsweetened applesauce and about three tablespoons 100% apple juice.

Honestly, it was just okay. It certainly smelled like BBQ sauce and it certainly looked like BBQ sauce, but it wasn't. Not really. It was a sweet, tangy tomato paste.

I've seen Paleo BBQ sauce recipes ranging from 20 ingredients to 2, slow cooked to microwaved to not cooked at all. I'm sure the recipes I chose to skip - the one with 20 ingredients mentioned above - are the best, naturally.

But my criteria for this test kitchen recipe is that the sauce must be

  • Easy to make (very little chopping, simmering, slow cooking, grinding, etc.)
  • Quick to make (under 30 minutes, or under 1 hour if the sauce is REALLY GOOD)
  • Doable in large batches (Summer's approaching; I want to bottle this stuff and use it til it's gone)
  • Fewer than 10 ingredients including spices.
So that is the mission of the week. I've accepted it. I will be posting updates as I go, but basically I have 6 days (including today) to see if I can whip up a BBQ sauce that tastes just as good as anything found in Kansas City or a BBQ competition with no added sugar and 100% Paleo compliance. Can it be done?