Saturday, November 19, 2011

DAY THIRTY

A big review on the last 30 days and details of my results coming soon. For now, scope the before and afters. I kinda might have cried a bit when I saw these because HOLY MAN...I can see a difference and I feel really awesome about that.

Friday, November 18, 2011

DAY TWENTY EIGHT & NINE

Feeling sick. Stayed home from work. Headachy, bummed out, cold, no energy.

Am I getting sick or is this the way this thing is going to end?

Thursday, November 17, 2011

DAY TWENTY SEVEN

Since before I was born, this time of year has been a time when my family goes out to get deer and moose and partridge for eating. We never bought meat at the grocery store--besides the occasional pork product. We would get half a beef from a farmer friend and fill our multiple chest freezers with all kinds of game meat. I grew up in Northwestern Ontario. A tiny village outside of a small town near the Minnesota border. My dad is a logger which means he knows where the best blueberry picking is and where the deer run through the forest.

When I went to university, I remember a professor trying to convince the class that Canada had no real food culture of it's own. I was shocked to hear this. Where I grew up there was a deeply rooted food culture. We had walleye and trout. We had wild saskatoon berries, strawberries, hawberries, highbush cranberries and chokecherries. We had moose roasts! I thought this was Canadian.

I have been lucky to be able to bring back meat from my parents. Each time I visit I fill a suitcase! It's super flavourful and lean meat that I love to cook with. I can't wait to stock up at Christmas.

I still remember the time that I came back from the city a "vegetarian" after my first year away. My dad must have been heartbroken. Good thing it only lasted until Thanksgiving.
My brother in the 80's!

My brother last week.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

DAY TWENTY SIX

We are so close! J has amassed a small collection of fancy beer to drink on Friday at midnight. I won't be diving back into that pool so quickly! I'm still sticking to the apple plan. Just an apple to start! Im going to get some raw milk to see how I respond to that. If it works out I'd like to experiment with cheese making! Let's be honest- I miss cheese! I can't believe I've gone almost 30 days without it! I guess I haven't been writing so much about all the things I've been missing. Maybe I didn't miss them so much?

I can't believe it's been twenty six days!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

DAY TWENTY FIVE

On Saturday I made soap with pals! J and I had bacon and eggs for breakfast and then he made a speedy escape to the garage. The girls came over at around 9am and we didn't get finished until after 5! It was epic! During the day, we snacked on celery and almond butter and I made up a salad with avocado, leftover roasted chicken from The Big Carrot and some canned salmon that Hannah brought over. It was quick and very tasty.
Crafting is an awesome way to keep busy and not think about all the food I'm not eating. That reminds me...I should probably try to finish that knitting project I started!

Keeping myself busy by going to see bands and hanging with pals has helped so much this month. I think at first I was worried that going out would be too hard. I was worried that I would want to drink or eat something gnarly. I think it's been the opposite and I've realized that those things are not the problem. The problem is when I stay home and eat because I am bored, sad or feeling unfulfilled. It's a nasty habbit that perpetuates itself because when I feel bad about myself, I don't want to go anywhere. I've been feeling really awesome about myself through this whole thing and that has been majorly motivating to go out and do shit. It's also motivating me to keep it going after the challenge is done. I think that's the whole point, right?

RIGHT!

DAY TWENTY FOUR: Working Blues!

This weekend kinda sucked! Work is so busy right now and I had to put in some time on Saturday. I really hate working weekends and I hate having our staff work weekends but it was necessary. I was sad to miss the markets and even more sad not to have the time to make up some deliciously elaborate and photographable meals.

In some ways, being this busy at work is keeping my mind off of the snacking that I would be doing otherwise. I ordered pizza for the team and even though they were super happy with it, I felt bad feeding them so much "non-optimal" food! I don't know what a good alternative would be that would be quick, afforadable and appeal to everyone. What kind of paleo option would you feed 15 hungry people who are on their feet all day?!

DAY TWENTY THREE

Nothing much beats a well seasoned, grass fed, quality rib eye steak. This paleo thing kinda rules.

Friday, November 11, 2011

DAY TWENTY ONE & TWO

I have been slacking on this! Apologies! I have been mad busy at work and in the evenings this week. That said, I have been sticking like glue to the induction!

Could there a better way to feed yourself than with a bird? During the week, I like to roast a chicken. It's so easy and provides a bunch of food for lunches. J roasted a chicken and we ate the legs with some greens and leftover summer squash (this thing went for miles). The next day, I had some breast for lunch at work. The skin on this thing was the best! A crispy and chewy treat.

For dinner that night, I picked all the chicken off the bird and made a stock with the bones and neck. I turned the stock into a very yummy chicken soup and made up some coconut and almond flour biscuits. I totally winged it (pun intended) and they turned out really great! I used coconut oil instead of butter and a bit of salt. Not sure of the measurements because I'm a jerk like that...but I'm sure if you measure out a bit of the flours, work in a tablespoon or so of the fat and then add water until it comes together--they should be fine! Bake until golden at 325.

DAY TWENTY

I am a baker. Not by trade but by love. This whole process has resulted in a pretty severe identity crisis. I know that once induction is over I will be able to enjoy some natural sweetened things! That should hold me over for a bit. In the meantime, I was inspired by the induction friendly treats at the Academy of Lions food shop! I attempted my own and they turned out great!

For these I used a combination of almond and macadamia nut butters and a bit of coconut butter. I used raw pistachios, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds for some texture. To make them rollable and not too mushy, I added coconut and almond flours and some pecan meal. A touch of vanilla and cinnamon added some flavor and rolling them in coconut made them a little more easy to pick up. J ate a lot of these and said they would be yummy with milk. Yeah, too bad!

DAY NINETEEN

We had some ribs! These ribs where coated with a bunch of spices. If you google a "dry rub" for ribs on the net you will find many variations! I basically put a bunch of whatever I could reach in the cupboard. After seasoning, I put them in my dutch oven, threw in some garlic and onions and braised them in about a half an inch of strong coffee. They were delicious with a side of spaghetti squash and big green salad. Perfect "comfort food." See how I'm workin' this? ;)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

DAY EIGHTEEN: Why Paleo?

Here is where things get a bit serious. I've never been happy with my body. Ugh! That kind of sucks to say out loud.

My naturopath once asked me to think of a time when I was happy with myself just the way I was. I couldn't. I couldn't think of a time that I didn't feel like I was too big or too round or too whatever. I remember being 14 and feeling like my hands were too big. Seriously. My hands. I dated a dude who once asked me what my favorite body part was and I told him "my feet." I mean, come on! My feet?

I am very slowly figuring out that I'm not too anything. I'm very slowly figuring out that I am ok. It's not an easy or quick thing like flicking a switch. It's taking a lot of time and work to change my patterns. For a long time I told myself that I wasn't ok. I did it because to me, it seemed like everything that was suppose to be cool and interesting and edgy and sexy was skinny. I was totally and utterly had by all kinds of really dangerous images of the ideal. I still need to check myself. I still find myself comparing. Images are everywhere. It's hard to get away from it.

I don't want to be skinny. I want to be healthy. I want to be really strong and really fit. When I'm walking, I want to feel like I need to run. I don't want it because someone says I should. I want it because it will improve my life. I feel better when I don't eat a bunch of sugar and processed stuff. I preform better! I'm happier and nicer to my boyfriend! I already know this but knowing it has not been enough.

I really love real food. I love getting local, organic produce directly from farmers. I dig finding new foods and things that I haven't tried. Have you ever had sea asparagus? Oh man, that stuff is the most delicious salty snack! I think it's so important that we support local agriculture and food security. I know how awful over-processed and over-packaged foods are for people and the environment. Knowing and believing all that hasn't been enough either. Sometimes my emotions and desire to comfort myself with food win out over all that. Part of my goal in this is to change that. I want to change my idea of what "comfort food" is and to take back all that power that I lost and do what I say I do all the way, all the time.

I started at The Academy of Lions in the spring time. I got myself a Fab Find thing for a 30 day trial of a ladies crossfit boot camp. One of my pals had been going and really loved it. I committed myself to 3 days a week for the whole month. I kinda surprised myself my actually hitting every day. I felt really awesome right away. I felt like I found my thing. The vibe was so amazing. A mix of people socializing and pushing each other to do better, go faster, be stronger. I signed up for a year membership did a few more months steadily and then summer hit. I did some work traveling and had weddings and camping and blah, blah, blah. Lots of good summertime reasons that when I looks back, were not good enough reasons. The end of September hit fast and I got a "what's up with you" e-mail from Dhani. It was just what I needed to get out of faileo mode and back into feeling stronger, faster and better.

The challenge came up after being back for almost a month. I knew it was the kick that I needed. I didn't even hesitate to sign up. My boyfriend decided to be as supportive as possible by participating too. It has made it so much easier and more enjoyable to have him along for the ride. I actually feel like we have learned a lot about each other in the process and after almost 6 years that's pretty awesome. He says he is learning a lot about cooking and I feel like I have been a more patient and open teacher. I don't know if I would have survived this without him.

Faileo is not an option anymore.




DAY SEVENTEEN

Sunday was the best day of the challenge so far! A couple of pals and myself organized a brunch and being that they are awesome, supportive ladies...we did it PALEO STYLE! I don't think we actually noticed that we were missing out on anything.
Hannah has the cutest apartment with lovely natural light. We took full advantage of the sexy food to catch some snaps. Hannah made latkes with zucchini and almond flour. She served them with smoked salmon, chives and sour cream (for the non-paleo peeps to enjoy). I drank coffee--straight-up!
The little loaf was not paleo but I swear I didn't partake. There was a crazy little monster voice person (not unlike the personality "Gimmie" from the show The United States of Tara) that was telling me, "EAT IT! Just shove it in your mouth you freak!" I didn't though...they had jam and I still didn't touch the stuff.
Amy made an amazing shirred egg dish with kale and sausage. This was so good! Which reminds me that I need to get the the recipe from her, stat!
I made a frittata! I know, you are shocked. I only live on the things! This one had bacon, broccoli, mushrooms, tomato and some greens. I also made a salad with mustard greens, arugula and sorrel from the garden and served it with a super-herby olive dressing of lovage, chervil and dill.
If you can't tell...it was perfect! We followed up our noshing with talk of soap-making and a tree-gazing walk to Koreatown for an essential oil sniffing session. BLISS!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

PLUG!

J's band is playing this show tonight at our pal's bar. At this bar, my favorite lady met her favorite man and guess what, his band is playing too. Maybe you should come? I think it would make sense.

DAY SIXTEEN: Market Saturday

After J was not feeling well last night, I woke up with a burning feeling in my stomach this morning. Kinda like how I imagine heartburn would feel but in the pit of my stomach. We wanted to go to The Wychwood Market so I sucked it up and got dressed after a lot of useless complaining.

More kale...cause kale rules.
A very cool but totally beautiful fall morning. The trees are on fire these days! Time to break out the winter woolies though, it's gonna get nippy! Last night we booked our plane tickets to head up north for Christmas. This will be J's first trip there in the winter and I am so excited to take him ice fishing, snowshoeing and tunneling into snowbanks.
Breakfast! A paleo-friendly raw taco from one of the market venders Nujima Living Foods. Can't wait for induction to be over so I can have one of her frosted brownies again...they are made with almonds, raw cacao, yacon syrup and coconut spread.
The bounty! Curly kale and red Russian kale, spinach, spicy greens and salad greens, celery, red and white onions, mushrooms, eggs, peameal and regular bacon, cucumbers, ground beef, napa cabbage, hot peppers and brussels sprouts.

DAY FIFTEEN

Ah, Friday!
Despite being the end of the week, it was a super busy day. I recently found out the amazing news that a proposal I did up for a subsidized healthy lunch program at work was accepted. So stoked, obviously...but it meant a lot of work in a short amount of time if I was going to get it up and running. I was flailing around like a crazy person all day. I ate lunch in a flash and didn't have any snacking opportunities but also didn't really miss them.

When I got home from work, J was laying on the couch in a state of "not feeling well." He said it might have been that he drank too much tea but he was also feeling really low-energy. We made up a couple pork chops and a side of brussels sprouts and ate in a state of zombiosis.

We relaxed in bed, talked about family and christmas and he confessed that he's been feeling pretty crappy. He said he has been "seeing weird things" (I experienced this a bit too) and dreaming of cheating every night. He said sometimes in his dreams we have fast food or drink a pop and he wakes up feeling horrible for failing. It's totally hilarious but also kinda crappy that he seems to have anxiety over it. He's basically doing the challenge to support me so I feel worried for him. He is a major craft beer lover and budding home brewer so it must be extra hard. We talked about why we eat bad things when we do or why we drink when we do. It was nice to open up a bit about all that. We generally eat very well. We have always been big on buying from local farmers at markets, mostly organic and all that. We've mainly done this because it's more delicious than conventional grocery store food. That being said, we tend to drink a lot and indulge in non-optimal foods often. It will be interesting to see how our habits change after all this. I feel like things will be very different.

Here is a picture of some nice radishes from the market a few weeks ago...to cheer you (and me) up.



DAY FOURTEEN

I made a super quick coconut green curry with lean ground beef and SO. MANY. VEGETABLES! There is still some kale in the garden so I've been picking and using as much as possible. Red onions, broccoli, peppers, and some mushrooms thrown in here. We ate it with kelp noodles which were surprisingly tasty. After a quick bite I went to The Academy of Lions for another crazy WOD. My workouts suck right now. I can't wait to get some of my old energy back. Any day now, right?

Also...it's official, the first thing I will eat on DAY 31 is an apple.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

DAY THIRTEEN

I have reached the point of not needing to eat. It's so weird. If it wasn't for getting dizzy, basically forgetting my name or leaving the stove on, I wouldn't even realize that I needed food.

I feel worn out. Yesterday's WOD was pretty brutal for me. Lots of lifting that I could barely manage. I know it will get better but I am feeling a little bit freaked out by my lack of energy. I walked to the subway from work and felt like I was gonna pass out. I'm definitely not taking in enough calories. I need to get back to eating lots of veggies with my meat and fat. It's just challenging because I'm kinda burnt out on cooking right now. I just feel a little "over it" and not being hungry isn't really helping matters.

Last night J made some haddock with bacon, shallots and garlic. I didn't end up having any but I did eat some for lunch today! I had an egg and some bacon for breakfast and some cucumber after work. One of our current favorite snacks is celery with almond butter...so good!

I'm working on a moose roast and some broccoli and purple kale tonight! I will eat it (so I'm not a zombie tomorrow) and it will be delicious and nourishing.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

RANT

I want oreos and ritz crackers! I want DQ ice cream! I WANT A CHEESEBURGER WITH AN ACTUAL BUN!


And why is knitting so hard?!?!?!?!?!


DAY ELEVEN



This morning I made a frittata with some leftover duck, Fun Guy Farms market mushrooms and some dill.

We ate it with a big salad! I had coffee and J had tea.
I wish the weekends were twice as long.




Saturday, October 29, 2011

DAY TEN: 1/3 Down

Before breakfast we headed up the the Wychwood Market. It's the last weekend for their outdoor market before it moves inside which means, winter is here! WHOA! We picked up some salad greens, bacon, pork ribs, some lamb stewing meat, cabbage, onions, leeks, purple kale, haddock, broccoli and romanesco cauliflower.

After the market, I made an omelette with bacon, greens, onions, and dill. I topped it with leftover salmon and paleo hollandaise sauce that I made up. J said he couldn't tell the difference but I think he was being nice. It wasn't buttery like hollandaise (I used olive oil) but it was still very good.
After breakfast I headed to Academy of Lions for the Saturday WOD. I put on bunny ears for Halloween and brought a pumpkin to work out with. It was a tough, long WOD with lots of running. I was beat at the end...almost to the point of spewing! YIKES!


For dinner I roasted a duck based on a recipe I found on Epicurious. The recipe called for slow-roasting a seasoned bird stuffed with shallots, fennel and herbs. It was pretty good! I am all for crispy, fatty duck.
A radish coleslaw with onions, dill and chervil.
The recipe called for extra fennel and olives to be cooked in the pan juices and then blended into a "gravy." I also made up some fried green tomatoes with some romas from the garden.






DAY EIGHT AND NINE

I missed posting for 2 days! What have I been doing? Scouting for a new cave? Stalking a glyptodont? Feeding my prehistoric cats? Basically. Basically just being heavily paleolithic.

What did I eat?!

Bacon and eggs for breakfast on both days. On day eight, we had leftover pork chops and salad for lunch. I snacked on dried coconut and beef jerky that I had picked up from The Academy of Lions Primal Food Shop. Super excellent snack! I would totally recommend stopping in to check out their selection of meats, and snacks. They have very delicious, induction friendly treats at the cafe as well!

That night we made open-faces portobello burgers. My apologies, these don't photograph well! Trust that they were delicious!
We used a little paleo mayo on them but they didn't even really need that. I was surprised at how lean the grass-fed ground beef was! I put them in the pan with no oil at first, thinking there would be enough fat. NOT SO! Next time, a little coconut oil will help.

We had leftover burgers yesterday for lunch. I also made up a salad to have on the side. J picked up some wild-caught salmon after work from St. Lawrence Market and he cooked it up with lemon and salt and pepper. He roasted brussels sprouts to have on the side. Simple and delicious. I think could live on salmon!

Yesterday was definitely the hardest day so far. I had a dull headache, was feeling off my game, hungry and a bit crabby all day. It was one of those days when I would normally come home from work, pick up some random "comfort food" junk and watch tv. I think I was feeling sorry for myself that I couldn't do that. I was like, "is this paleo shit worth it?" I felt like I wasn't being ME if I couldn't make myself feel better with food! But do I really want to have that kind of relationship with food? Do I really want to need it to get me through feeling down? No, not really. I'd like to build the kind of relationship with eating where I can have treats on special occasion and really fucking enjoy them. I want to learn to cope with stress through some other means. Something that doesn't make me feel WORSE in the long-run.

I made a cup of herbal tea and had a bath with a bunch of decadent bath things. It helped so much! I tidied up the house a bit and watched some scary TV. Sleep ensued and this morning, the shitty feelings of yesterday had turned into, "fuck yeah, I didn't faileo."

Guess what else? I was serious about the knitting!





Wednesday, October 26, 2011

DAY SIX AND SEVEN

I missed posting yesterday but trust that I was 100% ketogenic paleo all day long! I was right too, day six was better than day 5. I learned a valuable lesson on day 5; don't mess with breakfast. In other words, eat it.

Yesterday I had bacon and eggs for breakfast and left over rabbit soup for lunch. We made up a shrimp coconut curry with lots of veggies for dinner and I had a GIANT (the size of my head--I mean it) post-dinner salad as a "snack."

Today...more bacon and eggs but this time I made the eggs into an omelette with spinach and mushrooms. I had leftover curry for lunch. I wasn't too hungry after work but had a quick boiled egg before my WOD at Academy of Lions. I did a WOD on day one of the challenge but have not been since! My energy has been super high all day so I was looking forward to channeling some of it. It was like, walking wasn't fast enough today. It was a rad feeling.

The WOD was pretty good--1 minute of push-ups, 15 pull-ups and a 400 meter run. 20 minutes and as many reps as possible. After being away all summer, I really need to work on my pull-ups. I was really slow and doing 15 was painful to get through. I was happy with the push-ups and the run though.

I did 3 rounds plus 20 more push-ups and 12 pull-ups. Just in case I wanna check back for next time ;)

After class, J and I prepared a late dinner of pork chops and salad. I made a cucumber salad with some paleo-friendly olive "pate" I found. I threw in some red onion and sprinkled basil sprouts on top. I also made a coleslaw with cabbage, watermelon radish, celery and some green onion. I used a bit of paleo mayo, coconut milk and turmeric to dress it. Check it out!

We've basically used up all the vegetable ingredients that we bought on the weekend. Only a few onions and other random bits left. It actually feels really great to use up all the veggies. Even though I do think we eat a lot of vegetables normally, so often in the past we would buy a bunch with good intentions and let them rot because we didn't get to them. I feel like we are zero waste right now! Every morsel is precious and eatable. This might be my favorite thing about this whole experience.

Does this look familiar? Half meat, half veggies.

Tonight we're going to hit the Dufferin Grove Market for a stock up! I will report back on our seasonal findings!

Here is a very, very sleepy and silly video that I did at the end of day one where I pretend that I am an actual cavegirl, sitting in a cave just before bed. I wrapped myself in an actual wolf hide that my mom sent me last year and it's very cozy as you may be able to gather from the video. Next video? Hunting woolly mammoths (great band name!) ...or something.



video

Monday, October 24, 2011

DAY FIVE

Ok, today was bogus. Straight up.

I woke up late with a stiff neck from sleeping funny and didn't have a chance to eat breakfast. At 10:30am I was feeling the hunger and gave in for an early lunch of leftover buffalo chili. Bean-free of course! It was so good.

I snacked on a variety of nuts and sipped green tea all day.

So what's so wrong? I wasn't myself today. I was like a crazy version of me. I'm better now. I'm not going to digress into all the silly details. I just wasn't myself.

I ended up canceling my WOD due to my neck and 'cause well, I felt like I needed to get in pajamas and stay safe! I made a rabbit, mushroom and leek soup with chard, spinach and kale. It made me feel better. Things are better.

Day six will be better.




Sunday, October 23, 2011

DAY FOUR

26 more days to go! So far, today has been pretty alright. After my frittata breakfast, I was nice and full for most of the day. I did the hip mobility session with Erin at noon which was awesome! I kinda felt like I was floating on the way home!

I sprained my ankle in September which lead to some hip pain. It was mostly when I ran but has come and gone for the last few weeks. Erin showed me some awesomely painful but effective muscle massage techniques and stretches. My whole lower half was feeling fine! I will totally be implementing these moves on a regular basis.

Made up some crab cakes for dinner and I gotta say, they were pretty delicious.


BREAKFAST: Sans Bacon

I have something to confess. I cheated this morning. I ate 5 irresistibly ripe, red raspberries off my raspberry bush when I went out to collect greens for breakfast. Oops.

It's Sunday and I really wanted to make a substantial breakfast with lots of green things and vegetables. I grabbed some chard, kale, dill and chervil from the garden. I also noticed my lemon balm going bananas again. I snatched some to make tea!


On a side note! Last night I experimented with wakame seaweed. I was thinking I could make some seaweed "chips" if I baked the soaked, slimy greens in the oven. It worked, sorta...they were SUPER salty. I crumbled up the brittle bits into flakes, threw them into a jar and I planned to use them for seasoning.



Back to breakfast...
You can pretty much make a frittata with anything. It is an excellent "fridge cleaner." I used the smoked whitefish that I picked up yesterday along with the greens, onions, mushrooms and a bit of the noted seaweed seasoning.

To make a delicious frittata, I like to preheat the oven to about 450 degrees. Once it's heated, I put a small, cast iron skillet into the oven to get it nice and hot. (This summer when camping I realized that a super-hot skillet is less likely to make your eggs stick.)

Take some time to prepare your filling. Some combination of protein and herbs will do! For two people, I used 4 eggs cracked into a medium bowl. I added about 1/2 cup of flaked smoked fish, chervil, dill, seaweed flakes and pepper.

Whisk up the mixture and set it aside.

Once everything is chopped and diced, take the pan out of the oven and put it on a burner at medium-high heat. I used a bit of coconut oil in the pan and then tossed in the mushrooms and onions to soften them. The pan is very hot so you need next to no time and should stir to prevent burning. I then tossed in the greens and cooked everything for about 2 minutes. I poured in the egg mixture and stirred it for about a minute which helps to make sure it heats at an even temperature. Toss the pan into the oven and cook until the centre is firm.

We had our frittata with a salad of lettuce, broccoli, avocado, watermelon radish and basil sprouts. Topped with olive oil and lime.


I'm on my way to Academy of Lions to participate in the lovely Erin Mccutcheon's Mobility Clinic. Erin is an amazing-ass-kicking coach at The Academy. I will update y'all about the session later!

Happy sunday!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Saving Grace

Everyday Paleo

This is going to help me make it through!



BEFORE: The tightest shirt I own.

I was thinking of making a "before" video of me trying to put on my too-tight jeans. It's pretty funny...kinda looks like dancing and stomping grapes at the same time. This will have to do for now.

DAY THREE: The Hunter

"Most have forgotten the feast that lives all around us. Many stalk the supermarket aisles searching, not for real, honest food, but for the latest flavor of frozen dinner or convenience food. Our hunting and gathering is now largely restricted to picking through the produce aisle for the best ear of corn or keeping an eagle's eye out for so-called bargains. But our instincts are strong. We've been hunters and gatherers eons longer than we've been farmers. Esau is far older than Jacob. Who among even the most urban of us has not eyed a ripe blackberry with interest, even lust, while walking along a path on a hot summer's day?"

--Hunt, Gather, Cook



I woke up this morning feeling pretty gnarly. I was so tired....beyond tired though, more like wiped out. We were out of eggs so I had a coffee and 4 slices of nitrate-free bacon. Kind of a breakfast "snack." Shameful! (Just kidding. I have no guilt about bacon.)

We picked up my pal Amy and headed to the Evergreen Brickworks market for some serious paleo shopping. Local, organic, preservative-free! Within an hour of arriving, I had procured a duck, a rabbit, 2 lbs of grass-fed and finished ground beef, stewing beef, nitrate-free bacon (more, you say? HECK YES) and 2 dozen eggs. We also grabbed a variety of beautiful radishes (I don't think these are a bad root so going for it) spinach, celeriac, onions, homemade sauerkraut, purple basil sprouts and two kinds of mushrooms.

We wandered a bit, checking out the awesome gardens, brick oven and stretched hides. I bought a book called Hunt, Gather, Cook by Hank Shaw from the little garden store. I thought it was very appropriate and would help me to learn more about wild foods during this process.

In the afternoon, I met a pal at the Bloordale Pantry for a late brunch. I was a little nervous about eating at a restaurant for the first time since starting this adventure and having to ask for all kinds of substitutions. They were so nice about doing the burger straight up and supplying lemon and olive oil for the dressing.

After brunch, we checked out the Nuthouse! I buy my cat food from this joint and they have an excellent selection of bulk stuff and random foods. I bought a bunch of different nuts, some coconut flour and smoked Manitoulin whitefish from Ontario Natural Food CO-OP. I'm pretty stoked on this stuff considering the ingredients list: fish, salt, woodsmoke.
A few thoughts on the day?

I am feeling less crappy than yesterday. Still having a hard time feeling "full." I am satisfied upon eating but within about an hour I want more!

I feel a bit like my brain is not working at 100%. It's taking me a bit longer to think of what I want to say and I am having a little trouble listening to and focusing on other people. I'm generally feeling a bit slow.

It seems as though thinking about food is consuming me. What am I going to eat? Where am I going to get it? How am I going to cook it? I know it will come more naturally with time, but right now it's like, all I can focus on. I feel like I need to find some other stuff to occupy my brain. I don't want to psych myself out. Maybe I will take up knitting!? A knitting, crossfitting, paleo lion. Sounds kinda rad.




Friday, October 21, 2011

DAY TWO

Today was kinda hard. I know, it's only day two! I feel like yesterday was fun and exciting and today is like, "ok, the challenge starts."
It probably didn't help that I was sitting still and stiff in a closed room with a bunch of strangers for 8 hours. So not a natural, healthy way to be. I need open spaces and regular movement.

I had half a venison steak and an egg for breakfast. Coffee. Coconut milk. I need to find a good way to incorporate more vegetables into the am in a short amount of time. I'm thinking frittatas with kale or chard or some other delicious greens? I am open to suggestions!


Let's talk about coffee for a second! I am hardly a coffee drinker but I do have a few cups a week. I really love the packaging, idea (and TASTE!) behind this coffee by ChocoSol. It's available at most markets around the city. My favorite is the Evergreen Brickworks. Totes going there tomorrow. Long live Saturdays!

More on food...

For lunch I had leftover stew and some raw broccoli and a bit of nuts and cacao. I was wondering about hazelnuts (filberts?) today...are they ok for paleo induction? I dunno!

Anyways, I was downtown for this meeting stuff and feeling extra hungry...actually, all day I was feeling REALLY hungry. I think my body/mind is starting to notice the change. We got a break and I was out of snacks so I grabbed a chunk of grilled, wild-caught salmon and a couple olives from a grocery store deli (it was a fancy neighborhood, I guess) to munch on. It did the trick!

For dinner we cooked up the wild-caught ocean perch that J had bought yesterday. I seasoned it with salt, pepper and some cayenne pepper. I fried it for a few minutes on each side in virgin coconut oil. I put the fillets in the oven to keep them warm and sauteed some leeks and mushrooms in the same pan.
When they were a bit soft, I tossed them in a tablespoon of organic, lactose-free basil pesto (so good and totally paleo.) I served the fish with the mushroom/leek mixture on top with a side of cauliflower and squash, cut up into bite-sized bits, seasoned and roasted.

My new favorite drink is Pellegrino, lotsa lime and a big chunk of ginger. It's almost like a soda!





Thursday, October 20, 2011

DINNER!



I am snuggled up in bed, super cozy and content from a busy and delicious day.

Monty the Moose Coconut Curry Soup

I made this soup by cutting up a few chunks of moose into cubes. I seasoned them with salt and pepper and browned them using virgin coconut oil in a dutch oven. I removed the meat and added onion and then deglazed with a little stock (chicken or beef will do--mine was a chicken/duck combo that I had in the freezer from past bird roasting). I added lots of dried basil, a little good quality curry powder, red pepper flakes and a bit of turmeric. I added 1 can of organic coconut milk and a cup more of the stock. I simmered the meat on medium-low until it was tender and then added a handful
of hubbard squash chunks (skin removed), dinosaur kale, 1 small red pepper and broccoli. I cooked the soup for about 10 more minutes--until the veggies were cooked but still a bit firm.


Excellent post-pistols and handstand push-ups meal. I feel content and sleepy. Not sleepy like I ate a turkey leg, a mountain of mashed potatoes and 5 buttered rolls. More like, I am full and happy and looking forward to tomorrow.


DAY ONE

It's day one of the Academy of Lions paleo challenge.
My boyfriend e-mailed me to say that he picked up wild-caught perch from St. Lawrence Market. So much better than flowers, in my food-loving opinion.
For breakfast this morning I had some nitrate-free bacon with two scrambled eggs and coffee with coconut milk. Coffee with coconut milk is the best thing! Lunch was a salad with half an avocado, onion, broccoli, a boiled egg, mustard greens, and a few sliced radishes dressed with lemon and olive oil. Oh, and more bacon. MAYBE a little bacon heavy today? I wanted to start off delicously. Can you be too bacon heavy on the paleo diet? This is a serious question...if you know the answer, I'd love to hear it.
I snacked on almonds and cacao nibs at my desk and sipped green tea and water until I almost peed my pants.
Meat. Fat. Vegetables. No fruits and no roots.