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Ghee-licious!

I am the absent blogger, which really I need to keep up with more for purposes of keeping my weak-willed behind on task. I’ve had some moments of almost sheer panic related to not being able to eat food that is just horrible for me anyway. I definitely have some issues with certain foods, particularly sweets it seems. I fear it may be the amount of fruit I am eating, maybe having that sugar in my system is keeping my body from truly detoxing from the stuff and eliminating those cravings. The constancy of sweet treats on the break table at work has not been helpful either. But here I still am, following my Whole30 protocol. We are over half-way through now (on day 18) and while we are looking forward to drinking some alcohol at the end of this, we are still very much enjoying the food we are eating.

One of the food items that I have been missing greatly is grass-fed butter. I like to cook most of the things we eat in it, and I just haven’t been able to get that nice crispy sear on a steak without butter. We decided early on against buying butter to make ghee (since the amount of ghee I got was much less than I started with) or buying ghee already made (expensive) but I broke down and just bought some organic pastured ghee and am pretty much in heaven now where that is concerned. The steaks are turning out great, the eggs are creamy and buttery, the veggies have become more of a delight to eat, and the sweet potatoes are phenomenal.

Last night’s dinner was ghee explosion, everything was smothered in it. The steaks had that perfect crust (I don’t know what it is technically called, and cooked rare (yum!), I sauteed the shrimp in ghee with some minced garlic, salt, and pepper, and the baby carrots were steamed, then doused in ghee.

Steak, garlic-ghee shrimp, & baby carrots

After our Whole30 is over I want to make some Shrimp Scampi, which I used to make all the time when I was on the Atkins diet in the past. I want to get some big juicy shrimp for that!

Outside of the realm of food (finally!) I have a pair of New Balance Minimus shoes on the way! I am excited to try them out and have my feet protected while getting the barefoot experience. I prefer to be barefoot and mostly always have. I have extremely flat feet and shoes with high arches (though I’ve worn them a lot in the misguided attempt to correct the problem) just make my feet hurt horribly. I have always been more comfortable wearing very flat-soled shoes (like Chuck Taylor’s and Old Navy flip flops). I have also looked at the Vibram FiveFingers which sound great and one day I will probably have a pair, but I think I am better off not having my toesies all exposed in the beginning. I was very pleased to find out that NB had come out with a minimal shoe and I think they are pretty cute too. Here is a pic of the pair I ordered (for a very reduced price on eBay):

NB Minimus Trail-Running Shoe

So school begins again tomorrow (EEK!) and I am maybe for the first time not so excited about it. I have generally always loved school, but it has been about 8 years and I think I’m ready to get out in the real world and make money and have my free-time free again.  I even have a prospect for an engineering internship with a great company for this coming summer in the works right now so am very excited. By this time next year I will be a full-fledged mechanical engineer with a degree and probably be working a full-time engineering job. Crazy stuff.

But for now the drudgery continues and I am still freaking a little bit on how this diet is going to work during school. We are both going to be very busy with school, as well as working 20-30 hours a week, and cooking every meal sounds very daunting right now. A couple things I want to try to do is cooking a big amount of meat one day so that some main courses will be essentially ready-made for really busy days, and I’m probably going to start boiling a bunch of eggs every week for quick snack/breakfast items for school days. Other than those two ideas, I am sort of at a loss. But veggie sides usually aren’t too much trouble or time-consuming so maybe it will work out well this way, if I keep up with the plan.

As far as exercise, still not really happening yet. Which is OK, we are supposed to be concentrating on what we are eating right now and making sure we don’t slip up. Today is beautiful though so we are talking about taking a bicycle ride up to the university today. I hope it happens, I miss riding my bike! I definitely need to pin down some sort of exercise routing for during school, I will be figuring this stuff out very soon so will have more on it in the near future.

This is getting long, so I will end with all the pictures I’ve taken of our food since the last time I posted 🙂

Pork Ribs, Sweet Potato Chips, Salad

Ham, Broccoli, Sweet Potato Chips w/ Guac

Of course, as I mentioned in the last post I believe, the ham is not nitrate/nitrite free, which is not Whole30 approved. I have been reading a lot on this pancreatic cancer link stuff with processed meats that has been floating around recently. The study was a meta-analysis of a bunch of other studies that did not control for other factors like obesity, type II diabetes, etc., and is extremely inconclusive. Leave it to the media to start a panic. I will continue to try to avoid processed meats containing nitrates and nitrites because I don’t think that it is necessarily conclusive in the other direction either, but I’m not going to pass out a great deal to get a large amount of food just because it is cured either for the time being.

Chipotle! Salad with Carnitas and Barbacoa

We have been doing a little eating out and we tried Chipotle for the first time (which only recently showed up in Lubbock). It is pricy but very delicious! We ordered salads the first time, then bowls the second time. It seemed the bowls were much heavier in meat, so we will probably go with those in the future. Exactly the same ingredients, just more meat in the bowl. I had been seeing Chipotle mentioned in the paleo community so had to try it out. We have been ordering online then picking up, but in the future maybe we will try some of the tips on this site: How to eat wild at Chipotle

MEATZA! w/ Baked Sweet Potato and Avocado

We made meatza one other time, several months ago. Of course that one had cheese on it. I mixed up the ground beef with salt, pepper, oregano, and some minced garlic and pressed it flat into a baking pan. We sprinkled some sesame seeds on it and baked it til it was just about done. Drained off the grease that smothered it in tomato paste and topped it with diced ham and red onion slices and baked it about 15 more minutes. I think at 350F. It was very delicious!

Fajita meat & veggies from Rosa's and Guac.

Another foray into eating out, this was for my hour lunch break from work and I didn’t wanna try to cook and eat in that time. I went through the drive-thru at Rosa’s. It was pretty tasty and convenient.

Steak, Green Beans & Mushrooms, Sweet Potato, and Dessert!

This was one of our BIG A** dinners, extremely filling. This meal was the first I made after we bought the ghee, so it was also ghee-licious! 🙂 Sauteed green beans and baby portabellos in ghee, steak, and these sweet potato patty things we picked up that we just threw in the microwave and then spread some ghee over and sprinkled some cinnamon on. OMG they are good and I am going to have to fight myself to not buy them anymore, surely I can do it with sweet potatoes anyway. They get really soft and tasted like some sort of pudding. Yum! And we love cantaloupe, especially filled with berries and coconut milk.

Scrambled Eggs, Pork Sausage, and Fruit Breakfast

This breakfast sausage is nitrate/nitrite free! We also got some other nitrite/nitrate free sausage we are planning on having for lunch or dinner today.

Ham & Eggs & Strawberries

Simple, quick breakfast, my favorite to make.

So as you can see, we have been eating pretty good. A banana with almond butter as become a favorite snack of mine, I try to stick to not more than one a day at the most. I’ve been getting almond butter from the grocery store where they have a machine that makes it fresh from almond pieces. The machine wouldn’t work last time we were there, which made me very sad.

I’ll sign off here. I am sure my attention to this blog will dwindle even further with school starting and all, but I will do my best!