Friday, August 17, 2012

Some food stuff

A few of my culinary creations that I want to remember:

- Eggplant fried in almond flour, with spaghetti squash, tomato sauce, and pork chops
-Balsamic glazed pork chops
- Steak fajita salads
- Chicken in a "peanut sauce" (almond butter, coconut amino, hot sauce, water, salt) with sautéed onions, cucumber, squash, and diced jalapeños.
- Non crumbly almond flour pancakes with eggs and veggies for "breakfast for dinner" flavor

I feel like we eat the same thing a lot, but I'm getting more creative at the same time I feel.  Sometimes you can't get around a good steak and veggies, or a ground beef scramble with veggies.  Avocado and guacamole make everything good.

I went shopping solo for the first time yesterday and I'm liking it so far.  Danny likes to come to pick out steaks, but I didn't do too badly I think.  We always overestimate what we need, and we usually end up losing a lot of our produce and sometimes our meat, which is a terrible sin to me.  So I tried to keep it simple:

- Four cucumbers
- Four green squash
- Four yellow squash
- Four not ripe avocados (Safeway didn't have any ripe avocados in the entire fucking store, I checked)
- Two crowns of broccoli
- A spaghetti squash
- Four sweet potatoes
- A bin of baby spinach
- A package of romaine hearts
- A package of blueberries and a package of raspberries
- Two bunches of bananas (we go through bananas really fast, plus I can freeze them for ice cream)
- 3 packages of guacamole
- A package of pork chops, a package of chicken breasts, 2 lbs of ground beef, 2 lbs of ground turkey, a package of thin steaks for fajitas, and a package of good grilling steaks.

We used to buy a bunch of sweet potatoes and yams, plus strawberries which we never, ever eat.  They would always go bad.  The same with all the squash, it would be hanging out in our fridge forever.  So this is an effort at reducing.

The pork chops and ground turkey I immediately put in the freezer.  Yesterday I cooked all of the chicken and today made the fajita steaks.  Tomorrow I will make a ground beef scramble for lunch, and for dinner I will make the spaghetti squash with meat sauce, plus veggies and we probably split a sweet potato.  That leaves only the grilling steaks in the fridge, which we may end up cooking tonight, which might fuck up all our plans because that will leave enough for breakfast tomorrow, which means that I'll have an extra pound of ground beef to use for maybe a scramble the next morning.  At the very least I will use most of the meat in the fridge by Saturday morning, and then over the weekend we can eat the ground turkey and pork chops in the freezer.

So I guess my point is that meal planning is nice in theory, and I've started to visualize what I'm actually going to make with all the food we get at the grocery, as opposed to buying a ton in bulk and letting a lot go to waste.  I'll probably have to hit the store again on Sunday, if not tomorrow because I neeeeeed almond butter.  I feel really good about the amount of produce we have left - two of each squash, two cucumbers, and all the broccoli.  Plus all the spinach and romaine hearts.

I spent about 200 dollars for about 5 days, which still feels uncomfortably large for me.  I did spend a good 30 on some makeup and shampoo and conditioner, plus other small sundries for the house, so it's not all on food.  But the bulk of it is, and that's mainly the meat.  We're talking about going half in with Danny's brother for a biiiig hunk of cow that we can freeze.  That would probably save some money.  I'd still need to buy turkey and chicken and pork chops, but it would take care of our steak needs (which is where the bulk of our meat money goes) for awhile.

I'm feeling pretty positive about life right now, despite the fact that I think we may have to push Seattle off again - Danny probably needs surgery on his hands, and that's going to take at least a month, so we may just wait until after the new year.  So we'll see.  But in terms of trying to take care of the house more, and eating better and feeling better, I'm feeling pretty positive.

Sweets are still the bane of my existence, and I have some bananas chilling in the fridge for ice cream, but goddamn I want waffles (still on my waffle kick, apparently).  If I had almond butter I'd probably make some pancakes, but ah well.

So anyway.  This is my domestic post of the week.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

An ode inspired by waffles

I would literally smash someone's brains in for waffles.

Maybe not that extreme.  At least not yet.

I don't remember our last bad meal together, I think it was Saturday night.  So it's been a few days.

As much as I tell myself to just go with it, I get ridiculously cranky when I can't have what I want.  For example, right now I am dying for waffles.  It's rainy outside and I want some breakfast food.  When I'm not cranky, nowadays I will just bite my lip and see what I have in my fridge and snack on Lara bars or raspberries.  When I know I'm craving something intensely and it doesn't take much effort, I can normally try to plan Paleo alternatives.  The day before yesterday I wanted fried chicken - so yesterday I marinated some chicken breasts and then coated them with a spicy almond flour mix and baked it in the oven and they came out great.

When I crave ice cream, I make my smoothie of bananas, berry, cocoa powder, coconut milk, and honey - sometimes almond butter.  Right now I want waffles, and I don't want fucking almond flour waffles and honey, I want some waffles with butter and syrup and whipped cream and milk.  Not to mention we don't have a waffle maker.

I'm left with a few questions - if I wasn't trying to eat Paleo, would I still be cranky?

Probably.  Or maybe, I'd get over it.  I feel like I would get over it, considering we don't have a waffle maker and I didn't used to know how to make pancakes and probably wouldn't expend the effort anyway.  I would probably talk myself down from it and eat what was in the fridge.

Right now I'm talking myself up to go out and get those waffles instead of cooking something.

It's strange, and I think it's something I need to tackle.  I still feel confined eating Paleo style, and I've spent a good part of my adult life trying to reach around that confining feeling and feeling good about what I ate, no matter what it was.  I've always believed in moderation, and I fully believe that I could eat waffles tonight, and tomorrow go back to eating eggs and vegetables and almond flour concoctions.

That brings up my next question: if I were back in non-Paleo scenario, would it be as easy to eat well?

Probably not.  More than likely, I'd probably be eating terribly and not feel very inclined to solve the problem.  Instead, I'd get my waffles and the next morning eat a bowl of cereal (oh my god I fucking love cereal, now I want cereal), and then probably get some greasy fast food for lunch and for dinner eat mac and cheese and a sandwich.

So with those answers, I think that Paleo is doing good things for me.  There are days when I don't crave anything and days when I'm excited about eating good food.  And then are days like today, where I know I shouldn't have waffles, and that makes me insanely hostile, I will rip your face off cranky.

My next question is then: is this crankiness worth not having waffles?



So my answer is this: I don't think the cranky is worth not eating waffles, but Paleo has started to have some great effects on me, which I appreciate.  I know goals are all about "pushing past your hangups," but I don't even know what my goal with Paleo is.  It's to eat better, certainly, to feel better and be more active.  So far, it's working.  I don't think eating waffles right now would deter that.  If it became a bad habit, then obviously.  But I've come to realize that so much of my emotional state has become tied to food, mainly because of this "diet," which is why I've not done diets for any part of my life except now.  I've never felt the need to cut things out entirely, and as much as I try now, it's still not worth it.

I have to take care of myself, both mentally and physically, and I'm working on both.  The fitness people may be all up in my grill yelling FUCKING PUSH PAST IT YOU FUCKING WIMP FUCKING GLUTEN AND ADDED SUGAR AND OH MY GOD THAT STUFF WILL KILL YOU but at this point I'm ready to shrug my shoulders and yell back MIND YOUR OWN FUCKING BUSINESS.

I want some fucking waffles.  Eating should not be this much of a struggle, and if it is, I feel like I'm doing something wrong.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Just savin' this recipe here since nobody has Tumblr share buttons /sob

ThePaleoMom: Recipe: Paleo Chicken Fingers: What kid doesn’t like chicken fingers?  I’ve experimented with a few different techniques, trying to find one that yields a nice “breading”...

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Oh 3am

When I was in middle school and high school I used to think about how cool it would be if I had my own apartment in a huge city.  I love the feeling of the being anonymous, of being another story in thousands of stories sitting on top of each other.  Of interacting with people in a way that was slight and could be so much more if a pin dropped in the right way.

Now I'm thinking about Seattle and where we would live and I balk at the thought of a tiny apartment anywhere, at the thought of being confined.  

You ruined me for life, desert.  I need my space.  I need to be spread out.

I still like big cities.  I could never live in Tucson my entire life, or Flagstaff.  I still love those stories stacked on each other, and I guess it's egotistical, but I like the possibility of maybe being in them.  So Seattle is still the right choice.

It feels more and more like this might be our last few months here.  Our plans keep shifting, and it's hard to nail anything down, but I'm thinking about it a lot and today we looked at more houses and actually plotted for a year in the future.  We have only a dog and a house full of things to get there, and I think that's completely doable in a few weeks.  If we wait until October to commit to anything, we'll be sitting super pretty.

I'm always ready to pack my life up and move.  I have more baggage now than I have ever had in my life, and that's taken some time adjusting to, because when I've planned, it's always just me.  Now I have a dog and this boy and all his baggage too.  It's a lot to get used to.  

I would miss my stars, the sunsets, and the beauty of these mountains.  But I would get the ocean, and stars, and that's enough.

It's 3am and I'm feeling very nostalgic.