21-Day Sugar Detox: Week One Review

I think it’s fitting that my 100th post is a post-of-grandeur, as I’d like to call this. Get ready: this is a long one… but afterwards, have a glass of wine to celebrate post numero 100 with me!

I didn’t want to overwhelm the few readers I have (hi, guys! *wave*) by posting daily accounts of every little thing I’m going through with the 21-Day Sugar Detox I recently announced that I’m doing. Instead, here’s a less-painful summary of how things went. If you want to skip this, go ahead! I won’t hate you. I pinky-swear. Continue reading

To Thai or Not to Thai

We may have food in our new apartment’s fridge (which has an ice-maker… holy upgrade, Batman!) but we still have yet to do our usual BIG grocery-shopping trip. I’ve been food-shopping twice to get things my CSA didn’t bring me (onions, eggs, milk, avocado, meat, etc.), as I’ve already mentioned, but we haven’t done a trip to “stock up”. Back in Cincinnati, we would only do one real grocery-shopping trip per month, no more than $115 worth of stuff. It usually was composed of meat, dairy, frozen stuff (Eggo’s for the boy, veggies for me!), chips, pasta, pasta sauce, loads of fruit, canned stuff… and being a savvy coupon-cutter, I could usually knock the total price down 15% or so.

I have two problems at the new place: First, things are so expensive in the northeast! I’ve always known this, from relocating from 22 years of living in the northeast to the amazingly affordable Ohio River Valley… but still! We did just an “essentials” shopping trip when we were in our temporary apartment, getting just some meat, dairy, bread, butter… and spent over $100!

I miss my coupons.

Secondly, we’re so freaking busy with everything from insurance to furniture to job-hunting (for the boy) that going grocery shopping during the week is out of question, and on the weekends we just want to go into the city and relax away from it all.

One day last week, I had nothing to bring to work for lunch. Usually my lunches are leftovers from the previous night’s dinner, or just some random assortment of stuff. (For example, one day I had a can of sardines, a hard boiled egg, and about half a bag of baby carrots… don’t you dare judge me!) But, this time I had nothing.

I stumbled upon a website many friends seem to love: Grub Hub. There were two options: Thai or Indian. Honestly, I went for Indian first because I absolutely adore Indian food. After living in CA, Indian cuisine beat out the former champion, Japanese, to reign supreme in my palate. It didn’t come to fruition because the restaurant didn’t tell Grub Hub that they were closed for the holiday week, so my order was cancelled and I was refunded… and given a $10 credit on my account! Yay!

So, Thai it was.

The only thing I know about Thai is pad thai, but trying this paleo thing means no noodles. Luckily the Grub Hub menus are really intuitive and have a great user interface, so I could read thorough descriptions of each dish. I chose Kaeng Koong (or Gaeng Goong) and Chicken Coconut Soup. The former, as I learned, is a spicy curry dish with veggies, bamboo shoots, and prawns. This is the best article/recipe I could find that would explain exactly what was in this awesome dish. Mine looked different… a bit more oily and redder… maybe they used red or yellow curry…?

The coconut soup was nothing short of orgasmic. It’s apparently more awesome than Kaeng Koong, as it has its own Wikipedia article! It wasn’t spicy (nor did it have mushrooms like the photo on the Wikipedia page) but it was so, so, so good. It tasted like coconut milk, but savory, with chunks of chicken and decorated with plenty of herbs. It was absolutely delectable and next time I think I’ll just order that soup. Paleo-friendly and delicious. Win all around.

Speaking of paleo, I may not be able to follow it very strictly as I’d planned for the whole month. I finished out a week, but to spare you the details, I’m having all sorts of tummy issues since starting this paleo trial. I do enjoy not getting over-filled with breads and starches, but I’d like to feel better from the navel down! 😉 So, from now on, I’m not going to be as strict and start consuming things with more magnesium like beans (not paleo), yoghurt (not paleo), and almonds.

Not a failure – just a reassessment of what I need to function better!

The Little Things

Pardon the mess, but I am happy to announce our arrival to our new duplex!

It was trash day the day the photo was taken, hence the garbage out front; regardless, we’re really happy with our choice to live here! Of course, we’ll be living out of our suitcases until our PODS unit arrives next week, but I’ve already gotten my first CSA box of produce (including a garlic chive plant!), unpacked the few kitchen things we do have with us, and have already measured our living room and bedroom so that we can plan the furniture layouts before our furniture finally gets here.

Upon wandering through the new abode, we made note of some of the awesome things and one thing in particular that resulted in the all-to-familiar thought of, “Why didn’t we notice that earlier??” When I moved into our old apartment in Cincinnati, we had a moment like that when we realized that our bathroom had no power outlets. Oh, the joys of turn-of-the-century homes! This time, we realized yesterday that despite how open and wonderful our kitchen is, there is only one drawer, and it is less than a foot wide. This means we can’t fit our silverware in it. Whoops!

Those annoying little things…

In other news, my Paleo adventures, although just a couple of days old, have been full of creativity and, unfortunately, disappointment. My first day, I ordered chili at a restaurant for dinner because it listed the ingredients in the description as having beef, peppers, onions, and spices. It arrived with those things… as well as beans (not paleo) and topped with cheese (not paleo) and sour cream (not paleo). I ate some of it, but my disappointment overwhelmed me so the boyfriend finished it for me. I started anew with my entree – a chicken avocado cobb salad… which was served with ranch dressing on the side. Luckily the bacon was super flavorful and the avocado added creaminess that made every bite feel like it had dressing on it anyway.

Just another annoying little thing…

Luckily my composure was regained and my first paleo day at work went well: eggs and canadian bacon for breakfast (with coffee) and a salad from the salad bar at Fresh Market for lunch (mixed greens, pumpkin seeds, hard boiled egg, bacon, carrots, cucumber, topped with olive oil and balsamic vinegar) with a bottle of seltzer. I stopped at the market to get non-CSA essentials like avocado, chicken, beef, sausages, canned coconut milk, uncured bacon, almond milk, and some non-paleo stuff for the boy. (I forgot a few things, including eggs, because I’m an idiot!) Dinner was sauteed kale (from the CSA!) and garlic topped with a pan-seared chicken breast and a home-made garlic dill cream sauce (the solid part of coconut milk!) using the tons of dill I got from the CSA.

Without furniture, dinner looked something like this…

I still have so much of my CSA box to eat, so tonight I think I will try something shockingly new: beets. I found out how to cook beets online and will give that a try. Plan: roast beets in foil with olive oil, garlic, and some of those garlic chives I got from the CSA. Peel, cut into strips, and sautee with more olive oil and garlic. Spoon the mixture inside some blanched kale leaves and serve with some of the sausage I bought yesterday. Here’s to hoping this isn’t a complete failure!

If it isn’t good, beets will be one of those little things I have to work on!