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Oodles and oodles of zoodles! (Every blog can say that once, right?)

In an effort to keep up with my sisters’ spiralizing, I created this Paleo concoction:

Spicy Sunflower Zoodles

  • 1T minced garlic
  • 3T sunflower seed butter
  • 3T coconut milk
  • 2T coconut aminos (or soy sauce if not going Paleo)
  • sprinkle of crushed red pepper
  • 2 zucchini, spiralized
  • juice of 1 small lime
  1. Spiralize zucchini and let sit, salted, in colander while you prepare sauce. 
  2. Mix all other ingredients and heat on low in saucepan. 
  3. Lightly saute zucchini noodles. 
  4. Serve sauce on top of zucchini noodles and sprinkle with red pepper. 

-b


 

First things first. I’ll admit that I love pasta. I am capable of eating lots of pasta. But…I also like to pay some attention to recent health discoveries, and it turns out carbs aren’t thabestforyou. Whoops. Good thing I also love VEGGIES. And I can eat a lot of them, too! That’s why I was SUPER excited when K gifted me a spiralizer for [our] birthday! 

This week I set forth on a mission to make tasty dishes with my new gadget. I am totally love,love,loving it. I went onto www.inspiralized.com to seek out quick and easy recipes to start off with. 

These Garlic Sweet Potato Noodles with Pancetta and Baby Spinach were the bomb diggity: 

!!!!!! So tasty. I doubled the recipe, added a little more crushed red pepper than it called for (#imallaboutdatspice) and topped with a sprinkle of parmesan. Let me be clear. When you cook with the spiralizer, you shouldn’t think of it as “tricking your body” by eating something that is shaped like pasta, but is not. You AND your body should know that you’re eating sweet potatoes, and you can feel really good about it. Plus, it’s delicious! 

Spiralizer round two: Avocado-Basil Zuchinni Noodles with Chile Lime Shrimp and Corn

Why have I not been eating zuchinni in noodle-form for FOREVER?!?! It’s SO GOOD. Also, the sauce on the noodles is killer. I’m definitely going to make it in the future and dip lots of stuff in it. LOTS of stuff. I also followed the recipe for the most part here…but I added more avocado to the sauce than it called for (1.5 avocados instead of 1), and it think I like it a little thicker! The mix of the warm/cold in this dish is really awesome. 

Verdict: The Spiralizer is the shiz…and now that I know how to work it, I’m excited for some creative, original recipes in the future! 

Now I will leave you with this picture of my adorable breakfast:

The pumpkin seeds with pumpkin spice at TJ’s right now are everything. Also, look at my cute loose-leaf tea brewing cup that B gave me! It’s definitely made my days brighter. 

Happy beginning of fall, happy loose-leaf tea weather, happy Friday folks! 

-L


 

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To prove that I haven’t abandoned Paleo eating just because the Whole30 is over, here’s a recipe that I made last night to celebrate fall AND grain-free eating. Now that I know how much lower my blood pressure is while I’m grain-free, I figure I should keep with it…

Pumpkin Pie Spiced Grain-Free Granola

  • 2 cups of cubed pumpkin or butternut squash
  • 2 tablespoons ghee or coconut oil
  • 1 cup hazelnuts
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 cup sunflower kernels
  • 1/4 cup shaved coconut
  • salt to taste
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • generous dash pumpkin pie spice
  1. Turn oven on to 275F. 
  2. Put pumpkin in a baking dish and bake until getting soft, about 15 min.
  3. Add ghee to pan and mix. 
  4. In a food chopper or processor, chop the almonds and hazelnuts into small pieces (granola-sized pieces). 
  5. Add any of the raw nuts (in my case, all except the pumpkin seeds, which were already roasted) and the coconut pieces to the pan. Mix well to distribute the ghee/ oil.
  6. Continue to cook another 30 min or so until the nuts are all starting to get crispy.
  7. Add the pre-roasted nuts, salt, honey, vanilla extract, and pumpkin pie spice. Mix well, and press it all down into the bottom of the pan. 
  8. Bake another 15 min or so until it is crunchy in parts and chewy in parts. 
  9. Serve with yogurt, if you’re not going strictly Paleo, or with almond milk and eggs if you are. 

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-b


 

This weekend, we finished the Whole30, and then K and I turned 30 (with L turning 26)! It was a wonderful weekend.

So…for the Whole30 results…

I had started the Whole30 with a few goals in mind. Here’s how they all panned out:

(1) To challenge myself to make new foods: SUCCESS! We made delicious foods this month, and I have a new appreciation for protein. 

(2) To “re-boot” my immune system so I wouldn’t constantly sneeze and itch: SUCCESS. To be fair, I have no idea whether the Whole30 did this or not, but I’m happy with less itchy eyes. 

(3) To improve fertility: FAIL (I guess). It was unfair of me to expect the Whole30 to move mountains. But, to make a long story short: This was a horrendous month of fertility meds, injections, manipulated hormones, multiple ultrasounds, a lot of bloodwork…and zero results. In fact, it left us pretty hopeless in this realm, as I failed to respond to escalating doses of hormones. So, for job reasons, and because this month was so taxing on a physical, emotional, and financial level, we’re tabling these plans indefinitely (while looking more into adoption and foster options). {I’d put a frowny face here, but it couldn’t come close to conveying the actual frowny feelings}

So after that good/good/awful summary, here’s a happy report of the amazing Whole30 side effects we experienced:

  • Weight loss: I lost 8 pounds in one month. I essentially got down to my college weight in one month. And, T lost 12.8 pounds! I don’t mean to emphasize the weight loss, since it wasn’t really the point of our doing this, but it was a very nice side effect. And nice to finally find something that works!
  • Inches lost: T and I each lost about an inch around our waists. That’s always good. 
  • Blood pressure: This was the most amazing change; my systolic blood pressure (the “top number”) dropped 25 points! My BP went from 122/80 to 96/70. That is a HUGE drop! And T’s dropped about 15 points, too.

So, this was definitely worth it. I’m really grateful that T did this with me, since I know his sweet tooth made this challenging! Going forward, I’m still going to try to cook/eat Paleo at home (but I’ll be much less strict when eating out…so that we actually can eat out). Except that I’m re-introducing yogurt ASAP. I feel great eating yogurt, and I think it’s a good source of protein. And now I’m making my own yogurt thanks to a new gift from K&C…post to come soon…

I’ll end with a pic of the three DP ladies on our birthday. I had the DP yoga tank tops made for K & L for their birthdays, and of course they made those silly shirts look nice. 

I could never love anyone as I love my sisters. ~Little Women

-b


 

Three days left until we’re done with the Whole30…although I still haven’t decided exactly how done I’ll be. If I feel better on Paleo food, there’s really no reason to start eating grains again. I’m trying not to give my verdict until we’re done…in only 3 days!

We made, for the second time, these delicious cauliflower patties pan-fried in ghee. We followed this recipe word-for-word: http://thehealthyfoodie.com/creamy-cauliflower-fritters/

It’s a great recipe, and the cauliflower patties are the epitome of comfort food. Which it turns out I’ve needed this month, which has been especially tiresome and emotionally draining. But…fall is around the corner, we have plans to go to the mountains soon, and my little 2-person-1-dog family is otherwise healthy and happy. So, on we go…for three more days!

-b