Food Prep Sunday

Well, I still can’t believe the weekend is over. It was a good one as they always are. Saturday was spent celebrating Kari and Tony’s wedding and relaxing in the evening.

And Sunday…

We slept in until 8:30 which felt amazing. It was so nice to have a relaxing morning and not have to rush to get up, or set the alarm. Once I rolled out of bed, I got to work on a fruit smoothie.

In the mix:

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Banana
  • Spinach
  • Yogurt
  • Sweetener
  • Splash of water (to get things moving)

I also had a cup of hazelnut coffee. I drank my liquid breakfast while flipping through the Sunday paper and cutting coupons.

After a leisurely morning, we got out and ran our standard Sunday errands. We made a trip to the co-op for freshly ground peanut butter (we priced it out and it was cheaper to buy it this way than make our own), then we went to Target, and lastly Costco. By the time we got home at 12:30 I was about to eat my hair. Our fridge was fully stocked.

I whipped up a batch of scrambled eggs seasoned with salt and pepper. I wanted to try incorporating some Dry Curd Cottage Cheese (SCD talks about this stuff all the time). It took me 2 weeks to find this cheese–I thought I had the right kind during the intro diet, but turns out I bought the wrong stuff. Anyway, I mixed in a spoonful of DCCC into the eggs with high hopes of a cheesy nummy egg, but it turned out to be a flop. It tasted like cottage cheese mixed with eggs (duh) and I should have known that it would come out that way. I guess I thought the cheese would sort of melt into the eggs a little better. The texture was a little too funky for me. I topped it with salsa which made it taste a little better, and I choked down a couple of bites before moving on to something else.

After my failed DCCC eggs, I went on to eat cooked carrots, watermelon, and almond butter. Then, I hit the road to go meet mom for a hot and humid walk. We walked around mom and dad’s neighborhood for about a half hour and we looked like wet noodles by the time we got back because of the humidity. It was a great walk though! After the walk I hung out with mom, dad, and Abbie before coming home to get to work in the kitchen.

I think Sunday can officially be deemed food prep day. Lately, it has been working out well to spend a few hours on Sundays preparing food for the SCD so that I am able to continue to stay on track throughout the week. It can be slightly exhausting but it’s always worth it in the end.

Yesterday I made…

  • Cooked carrots
  • Applesauce
  • Cheesecake (SCD)
  • Crockpot Chicken
  • Tilapia
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Pineapple gelatin
  • Homemade BBQ sauce (recipe to come)
  • And I cut up fresh strawberries from a Costco-sized container

Cooked carrots: place organic baby carrots in a large bowl with about a cup of water, cover and microwave for 8-10 minutes or until carrots are fork tender. I have been eating these like crazy and wanted to have plenty for the week ahead.

Applesauce: Peel, core, and slice your apples. Place in pot with an inch or two of water in bottom of pot. Bring to a boil and let boil for about 10 minutes or until apples are fork tender.

Let the apples cool slightly, then transfer the apples (not the water) to a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.

Refrigerate and enjoy plain or with cinnamon. That’s what you call all natural applesauce!

Next up was SCD cheesecake and I used this cheesecake recipe right from the book.

Crock pot chicken: I placed two boneless skinless chicken breasts into the crock pot with ground mustard, salt, pepper, and a touch of honey. I set the crock to low and let it go for 4-5 hours. Once the time was up, I removed the chicken and placed into my Pyrex so that it would be ready to eat for lunch or dinner this week.

For dinner, we cooked up tilapia seasoned with fresh dill from our garden, fresh lemon juice, and pepper. I ate mine with ketchup (obviously), and I had a side of cooked carrots with a sprinkle of cinnamon and honey.

I LOVED the carrots with the cinnamon and honey holy cow. They tasted like a dessert to me! I finished the meal off with a piece of cheesecake pictured above. Hmm…well, it tasted better than the last time I made it but that’s because I had used the completely wrong cheese! The taste was alright, but I had a hard time getting past the texture. It wasn’t smooth like I was hoping. Oh well, I can’t say I didn’t try, but probably won’t be attempting to make that again.

There you have it; my busy day in the kitchen. The next couple of days I am going to be cooling it with introducing new foods into my diet. My body has been a little off lately and I this past weekend I wasn’t feeling too well. I plan to eat a modified version of the intro diet for a couple of days to get me back on track.

This is what I’m tentatively planning to eat (I am basing these foods off of the SCD Intro Diet and modifying to fit my needs):

  • Eggs
  • Chicken
  • Lean beef (if necessary)
  • Fish
  • Fruit Juice Gelatin
  • Cooked carrots
  • Applesauce
  • Bananas

Basically, I’m just adding applesauce and bananas on to the intro diet. Since I have already improved tremendously, I know I will be able to handle both of those foods just fine yet still give my system a bit of a break. This will only be for 1 or 2 days, then I should be able to move on again with adding foods back in slowly. That’s the plan as of now.

Once I was all done with the food prep, the rest of my Sunday night was spent watching the Season Finale of The Bachelorette. I am pretty surprised with the outcome. Have a great day everybody! I’ll catch up with you soon.

Kiss Me, I’m Nuts

Oo la la looky what I have! Fresh green beans from our garden! They are so crisp and wonderful. The tomatoes are popping up like crazy too but not quite ready to be picked. I love having fresh veggies right in the backyard.

In the back I pulled fresh beans, in the front I snagged a box full of almond flour from nuts.com. By snagged, I mean I bought a box of almond flour; 25 lbs to be exact. Check out the awesome box it came in. This should be a theme box for my blog; so cute and nutty. 😉 I especially love “Kiss me, I’m nuts.”

I priced it out and found that it was a better deal to order the almond flour in bulk, versus buying smaller individual packages from the local stores (which wasn’t surprising). Also, I really wanted almond flour, not almond meal, and buying individually packed almond flour in the store is ridiculously expensive, so this was definitely the way to go.

That is quite the load of flour!

With the help of my trusty assistant Dana, we bagged the flour into gallon freezer bags and placed all of the bags into the freezer except for one. Thank goodness we have a large freezer in the garage.

As for that bag of flour I left out, I had baking plans. I wanted to see how the SCD bread would bake up with the almond flour compared to the almond meal that I have been using. I made two loaves so that I could freeze one for another time.

And the verdict? I like the bread better with this almond flour. It is less crumbly which makes it easier to eat. The taste is pretty much the same though.

That was a quick recap from a couple of days ago…now on to yesterday.

For breakfast, I sliced myself up a big ol’ piece of that fresh loaf of bread, topped it with homemade almond butter and a drizzle of honey. Almond on almond…mmm love it.

 

Lunch at work was nothing to write home about. I made myself a bowl of SCD yogurt with a banana, and cooked carrots. After work I headed to the gym and snacked on watermelon on the way. At the gym, I hopped on an elliptical and sweated it out for 35 minutes or so.

Not long after I got home from the gym, I was pretty darn hungry. I grabbed a couple of handfuls of cherries to tide me over. I used our cherry pitter to help me enjoy the delicious reds even more. Eating a cherry without the pit in there is fantastic! With the pit is fine too you just can’t enjoy it as much because you are weeding out the pit. The cherry pitter was a wedding gift and it was a great one at that.

 

Dana and I were both hungry at about 5:00 so we decided instead of more snacking, we would just go ahead and make dinner. We fired up the grill and cooked up two very lean round steaks (I think that’s what they were). We also cooked some mushrooms to top our steaks. I served myself another helping of cooked carrots, which btw are really starting to grow on me, and Dana had a side of broccoli.

What’s that red stuff on my plate you ask? It’s ketchup of course. I like ketchup with steak sometimes.  Is that weird? My homemade ketchup actually kind of tastes like Heinz 57, so it wasn’t weird to me at all.

 

It was a simple, nutritious, and tasty meal. Simple is definitely the way to go on a Friday night. Success.

The rest of the night was spent hangin’ with the boys, painting my toe nails, and getting ready for a wedding we are going to today. Right now it’s raining out, and I’m hoping for the bride’s sake that it stops by the afternoon. No matter what though, it will be a beautiful celebration! I am excited to help celebrate with them today.

I hope you all have a great Saturday! Catch up with you soon dudes.

 

Zucchini Pizza Bites

Well hello there friends. Happy Thursday to you all.

A week ago I had a venting session about how overwhelmed I was with the SCD and how I wasn’t sure if I could continue to follow it as closely as I had been. I wrote that post at the end of a long work day and on a day when I wasn’t feeling well. Needless to say, my thoughts at that moment were most likely hinged to the fact that I was in fact exhausted, but not because I couldn’t handle the food preparation and the details of the SCD, more because I had a rough week.

Since my vent session, I have continued to follow the SCD very closely, sticking to “legal” foods and progressing with the diet at a rate based on my own health status. I have been doing very well with sticking to the allowable food items. I am really learning to pay attention to my body and how it reacts to different foods and activities. I continue to experiment with introducing foods back in to my diet to see how my body reacts (I learned I wasn’t ready for raisins—I knew better too).

I am about 2 1/2 weeks in to the SCD and I am feeing well, but still not 100%. It is rare that I have a “bloaty” day, and if I do, I can usually immediately associate it to a certain food that I ate, or correlate it to not eating as frequently as I should throughout the day, not drinking enough water, etc.

I continue to see the gastroenterology specialists who are treating my U.C. with medications, and who are fully aware that I am following this diet. I will continue to heal and share my journey with you all. It has been about two months now that I have been in this “flare” stage, but it feels like it’s been a whole lot longer than that. Thank you all for supporting me through this process. I can only hope that I am helping someone else out there who is facing the same challenges as I am.

On a lighter note, how about a Wednesday recap?

Breakfast: plain yogurt (SCD) sweetened with honey and topped with 3/4 of a peeled peach or maybe it’s a nectarine? Either way, it was delicious.

Lunch: I didn’t get to snap a photo of lunch because I literally had to stuff my face in a couple of minutes due to getting out of work late and Moose deciding to upchuck in the living room. I grabbed peanut butter and a banana before I had to head back to work.

Dinner: After work I came home and dug into some more of that super juicy refreshing watermelon salad I made the other day. This was part one of dinner.

I had two artichoke hearts from Costco while I pondered dinner options. These babies are packed in oil, so I gave them a rinse in the sink before eating them. They are very tasty! Dinner part two.

I was completely indecisive about what to eat for the more substantial portion of my meal. In the meantime, I meandered out to the backyard to check on the growth of one particular zucchini in the garden (aka the only zucchini in the garden right now). To my delight, it was ready to be picked! Finally, our first one of the year. I have a feeling now that the first one has been picked, they are going to start shooting out like wildfire like they did last year. I am going to have zucchini coming out of my ears soon (I hope!). I can’t believe how fast they grow. Just the day before I picked it was at least 2 inches shorter I could swear.

So clearly the next part of my dinner had to include the zucchini.

 

I remember an idea I saw on Pinterest for some sort of zucchini pizzas, and I ran with the idea.

First, I cut the zucchini into 5 mini rounds. I blotted each one with a paper towel to remove some liquid. Ideally, I would have like to let these sit in a colander with a sprinkle of salt for 20 minutes, and then blot them off with a towel, because I would be able to remove even more liquid. But since I was not in the mood to wait 20 extra minutes, I forged ahead.

I got the oven preheating to 375°. I prepared the zucchini bites on a piece of aluminum foil (easy clean up). I sprayed the aluminum foil with non-stick cooking spray but in reality, I probably didn’t need to do that as there was so much water that came out from the zucchini in the baking process and I don’t think they would have stuck.

I then sprinkled garlic powder on the zucchini, then layered on a tablespoon of homemade marinara sauce, cheddar cheese, and chopped green olives, and popped these bites in the oven for about 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, I turned the oven to broil, and cooked for an additional 3 minutes until the cheese was melty.

 

A quick, easy and healthy SCD meal in less than 20 minutes. Um, hello, yea! Dinner part three.

I debated sprinkling some parmesan cheese on the top but decided they were cheesy enough as is. I would make these again in a heart beat. They would be perfect for little ones too or even a fun snack or appetizer option.

Zucchini Pizza Bites (serves 1)

Ingredients

  • 1/2 of a zucchini, cut into 5 circles
  • Garlic powder (not SCD legal—okay to omit)
  • Marinara or pizza sauce
  • 1-2 Tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese
  • Your favorite pizza toppings: mine happens to be olives

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°
  2. Cut zucchini into 5 rounds, blot with towel to remove excess liquid, and place on baking sheet or aluminum foil
  3. Sprinkle zucchini with garlic powder
  4. Spoon sauce on each zucchini, then cheese, lastly toppings
  5. Bake for 10 minutes.
  6. Turn oven to broil and bake for an additional 3 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Not too shabby for not knowing what I was going to eat for dinner, right?! Bring it on zucchini, I have a lot more plans for you. After dinner, I walked on the treadmill for an hour while watching Wheel of Fortune and So You Think You Can Dance.

I am out for the day. Enjoy this day, and I will catch up with you later gators.

Na Cho Average Nachos

Well, hello there! How is everyone’s Tuesday rollin’ out so far? I’m going to give you a quick run-down of my day yesterday and then I have a super amazing recipe I want to share with you from Sunday evening.

Monday Morning

I started off my morning lacing up the sneaks for a 3.5 mile run around the neighborhood. It was a hot and sweaty run, but there was a nice breeze which helped keep me comfortable. Post-run, I attempted to model my new strawberry cup I bought at Target the other day. It matches my strawberry plate! I also bought a lemon cup to match my lemon plate. The summer dishware was 70% off and I just couldn’t pass it up.

For breakfast, I whipped up a smoothie, made my to-do list, and hit the road. My most recent smoothie obsession is a smoothie made with a frozen banana, a splash of pineapple juice, 1/4-1/2 cup SCD yogurt, and a dab of honey. It is so creamy and tropical tasting. I am loving it.

See-Food Lunch

I got home from running my errands around 11:00 and I was starvin’ marvin. I pulled out the watermelon from the fridge and snacked on some of that while I pondered my lunch options. I really couldn’t decide on anything substantial so I chose to start with a bowl of seedless english cucumber slices. I peeled the cucumber, sliced some of it up, splashed it with vinegar, a pinch of fresh dill, and salt and  pepper. This was my experimental food for the day. I am hoping I can tolerate it okay. The salad was very refreshing and I would love to make a big batch of it.

And so began my see-food diet day. I saw food, I ate it.

I ate some peanut butter and honey.

And some SCD crackers. I made one batch of crackers and then split it into two batches: one cinnamon and sugar (saccharin) batch, and one salt and pepper batch.

I also snacked on a handful of cherries. I am making sure to chew the cherries very thoroughly to help aid in the digestion process. I realize that cherries may be slightly “advanced” at my stage in the SCD, but I have decided I will not go all summer long without eating cherries. They are in season right now and the season is so short-lived and I have been eating a few here and there. They don’t seem to bother me at all. I am enjoying every perfect bite.

I had a sliver of SCD bread too.

I was wanting something dessert-like yesterday, so I searched around and found a SCD gummies recipe on Comfy Tummy’s site. The only ingredients are 1/2 cup grape juice (or whatever juice you have on hand), 3 unflavored gelatin packets, and 1 Tablespoon of honey. I just followed the directions right from Comfy Tummy’s recipe, and this is what I got.

These weren’t too shabby for a sweet treat, but they don’t compare to my grocery store bulk gummies that I like so much.

Afternoon Walk and Dinner

In the afternoon I met up with my girly Kate for a walk around the neighborhood. It was going to be a walk around the lake but when I found out we would have to pay $6.25 for parking, we made other plans. We headed to a nearby neighborhood and hit some beautiful trails around there. We walked for an hour which, in the 100° heat, turned us into hot sweaty messes.  As always, it was SO good to spend time with her and catch up on life. I love her, love her, love her.

By the time I got home at 6:30, I still wasn’t hungry for dinner. I think it was a combination of snacking all day and over-heating from the walk. I actually felt nauseous for a little while. Eventually I came around and ended up eating a bowl of cooked carrots, a couple of cinnamon cookies, a bite of muenster cheese, and a few more cherries.

Okay, I have got to move on to the long awaited recipe I have been so excited to share with you (drum roll)…

Butternut Squash Nachos!

Butternut squash SCD legal nachos. I kid you not. These are na cho average nachos. To begin, I peeled a large butternut squash.

I used the long neck of the squash to make “chips” on the mandolin. I sliced these very thin so they were chip-like. I steamed the other portion of the squash in the microwave and pureed it in the food processor. I bagged up the puree and placed it in the freezer for another day. You know I wouldn’t waste food. Haste makes waste.

Okay, so once the chips were sliced, I placed them into a pot of boiling water and boiled for two minutes. After two minutes, I placed them into a colander in the sink and rinsed with cold water until the chips were cool enough to handle.

Then came the tedious part. I used a paper towel to dry each individual chip and placed them onto my baking mat (I used two baking sheets). This took me a while but considering the end result, it was so totally worth it. Once all of the chips are placed onto a baking mat or parchment paper, spray with olive oil or canola oil, sprinkle with salt, and place in a preheated 375° oven.

I wasn’t sure how long they would take to bake, but it ended up taking about 30-35 minutes, turning the pans and switching shelves half way. I ended up flipping the oven to high broil at the end so that I could try to crisp up the top a bit.

While the chips were baking, I prepared the toppings. I took one avocado, diced it, added a splash of lime, cilantro, cumin, and salt and pepper. I gave it a stir and had guacamole in a flash. I grated cheddar cheese to melt over the chips. I seasoned some leftover pulled chicken with chili spices.

When it was time to assemble, I placed a layer of chips on the bottom of the plate, topped them with cheddar cheese and chicken and popped them in the microwave for about 45 seconds. Then I topped the nachos with organic salsa and a heaping spoonful of guacamole.

Holy moly you guys will not believe how insanely delicious this was! I didn’t want it to end. Can you believe this is SCD friendly? I am very proud of this dish. It was worth every bit of effort and Dana agrees. These nachos are the bomb.

I am going to leave you with that to drool ponder over. I hope you all have a great Tuesday. I will catch up with you soon!

 

Na Cho Average Nachos
Print
Butternut Squash Nachos (for two)
Ingredients
  • Chips:
  • 1 butternut squash neck, peeled
  • Cooking spray or canola oil
  • Salt
  • Toppings*:
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • salsa
  • Guacamole (mix all ingredients)
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 Tablespoon cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of half a lime
  • Dash of Cumin
  • Salt and pepper
  • *Use whatever nacho toppings you enjoy: lettuce, tomatoes, onion, black olives, would be great additions to this dish.
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375°. Prepare two large cookie sheets with parchment paper or non-stick baking mats.
  2. Use mandolin or sharp knife to slice squash into thin round chips.
  3. In a small pot, bring water to a boil. Once water is boiling, add chips; cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Remove chips from stove and pour into a colander in the sink; run cold water over chips until cool.
  5. Use towel or paper towel to pat each chip dry and place on baking pans.
  6. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the chips begin to crisp.
  7. Turn oven to high broil and broil for 2 minutes, watching carefully so that chips don't burn. Once they are crisped up to your liking, remove from oven.
  8. Plate the chips and add cheese and chicken. Cook in microwave for 45 seconds.
  9. Top with the rest of your toppings and devour.

Cabin Weekend Photo Recap

We had such an absolutely amazing time away at the cabin this weekend. It was a sunny, relaxing, laugh-until-your-cheeks-hurt, 100% laid-back good time. 🙂 The family members at the cabin were my aunt and uncle Chip and Patti, two of their kids Aaron and Ali, my aunt and uncle David and Doreen, their two boys Matthew and Nathan (their cabin is next door to Chip and Patti’s), my mom and dad, and Dana and me.

This post doesn’t need many words, so how about a photo cabin recap instead? Here it goes…

I didn’t want to leave on Sunday; I had such a blast. This is definitely what the doctor had ordered. Thank you to my gracious aunt and uncle/Godfather for having us out to your lake place. I hope we can make this happen more often!

In case anyone was wondering, I did manage to stick to the SCD all weekend. It wasn’t easy, but I did it. I really want to reach my hands into the popcorn bag and the peanut M & M’s, but I resisted and snacked on some cantaloupe instead.

I hope you all enjoyed your weekend as well! I have a healthy and delicious nacho recipe coming your way tomorrow. You’re probably going to want to check back. 😉

Have a great day!

She’s a Maniac in the Kitchen

I was a machine in the kitchen yesterday. I mentioned that we were going to be heading to my uncle’s cabin this weekend, and since we are following the SCD, we decided it would be easiest for everyone if we just brought our own food for the day. That means I had to get busy.

Friday Recap

Friday morning started out with a purple smoothie. I decided not to bore you with yet another nearly identical smoothie photo. It looked like this and was extremely tasty. While I slurped my smoothie, I attempted to blog, but our internet was moving at snail speed and I was getting extremely a little impatient. I decided I would hit the gym and run my errands in the meantime while the computer took an hour to upload one photo (exaggerating only slightly).

At the gym, I started off with a two-mile run while listening to Pandora. I am a little disappointed in the television show selections at the gym these days. They used to always have one TV that played Bravo/E! shows like The Real Housewives, Keeping Up With the Kardashians, you know, all of those thought-provoking shows. 😉 I would always make sure to plunk myself in front of that TV. Lately, I’ve had to settle with Fox News. Anyway, the run felt pretty good, the entertainment not so much. Then, I hit the weights for some bicep and back work. Once I was done with the weights, I hopped back on the treadmill to finish off one more mile. I was sweatin’ big time by the end of this workout!

After the gym, I had to make a few stops to pick up some last food items for the weekend. Back at home, I attempted blogging again. This time around the internet was working much  more efficiently, thanks to the hubs. I ate a completely random lunch before getting busy on food prep. If I recall, I ate cooked carrots, pulled chicken, half of a banana, a couple bites of peanut butter.

Then it was food prep time. I started by making our dinner meal which was turkey and vegetable lasagna. I used zucchini as the noodles. To prepare the zucchini for the lasagna, I cut the zucchini on a diagonal to give long 1/4 inch thick or less strips. I threw them into a strainer, sprinkled them with salt, and let them sit in the sink for about 20 minutes to help remove excess liquid. After 20 minutes, I blotted each strip with a paper towel then got to layering my lasagna. I didn’t measure exact proportions but I can give you some idea of what I did.

Layers from bottom to top:

  • marinara sauce (homemade SCD)
  • zucchini
  • ground turkey, browned
  • a sprinkle of oregano and basil
  • spinach leaves
  • sauce
  • repeat
  • top with cheddar and parmesan cheese
I baked this in a bread loaf pan since I was only making the lasagna for Dana and myself. I baked it at 357° for about 55-60 minutes. I finished by turning the oven to low broil to lightly crisp up the top.

I placed it into the fridge to let it cool. Once it was cooled I cut out to large pieces and packed them up for the weekend.

Then I got to making a loaf of almond bread but am using a different recipe now than the one I posted here. The new recipe comes from livinglavidamama and I like it better than the other one because it doesn’t have butter. The taste is nearly identical to the other recipe.

Recycled reused photo:

While the bread was baking, I cut up a perfectly ripe cantaloupe. Cantaloupe isn’t usually my first choice of melon, I prefer watermelon and honeydew over it, but being the loving wife that I am and knowing the hubby likes it, I went with the cantaloupe this time. I munched on a few pieces while I cut it up and enjoyed it. It’s not that I don’t like it, I just don’t prefer it. It will be a perfect snack for us today.

Okay, so lasagna done, bread done, cantaloupe done (I learned how to spell cantaloupe today btw, yet another perk of blogging), next on to lunch.

In the morning I started up two chicken breast in the crock pot. At around 2:00, I removed them and cut about 1 1/4 of the two chicken breasts into chicken salad size bites. I added one peeled and chopped apple spritzed with lemon juice, mustard, celery seed, and pepper and mixed it all together. I then prepped a handful of lettuce cups. For lunch: chicken salad lettuce cups. Easy! Lunch, done.

So what was left? A veggie with dinner perhaps and breakfast.

After I cleaned out the crock pot, I thought I would do a little experiment. We have a bag of sugar snap peas that had been in the fridge for quite some time. They weren’t bad yet, but since I’m not able to eat them raw at this point, I wanted to try to use them up before they went bad. I wanted to try to “steam” them in the crock pot. I added the bag of snap peas to the pot, added a cup or two of water, a squeeze of honey, covered them, and set them on low. I let them go low and slow for 2-3 hours. The result was a sort of smoky snap pea. They definitely taste different, but I kind of like them and so does Dana. I added a little salt, packaged them up, and voila.

Last prep was breakfast. I made us both banana egg pancakes like the one I had on Thursday. This time I added cinnamon, a touch of nutmeg and allspice to the batter before pouring it on to the sauté pan. Once they were cooked, I packed them up and also packed about 2 tablespoons of peanut butter (1 Tbsp each) for us to add to the top of our cakes.

Are you ready for the entire day’s worth of meals in one photo?! Get ready…..

Ta da!

Lunch: Chicken Salad Lettuce Wraps with Cantaloupe.

Dinner: Turkey and Vegetable Lasagna and Slow-Cooked Sugar Snap Peas.

Breakfast: Banana Pancakes with Peanut Butter.

She’s a maniac, maniac…in the kitchen! I am pretty proud of my work. That is how you do camping SCD style.

Oh what was that? I still need to make dinner? Darn it! I decided to go real easy and made myself an omelete with one egg and one egg white, and topped it with leftover veggies from the other night, a sprinkle or parmesan cheese, and served it with a big dollop of homemade ketchup. MMmm ketchup!

It came together in less than 5 minutes which was just what I needed. I spent the rest of the night relaxing, packing, and painting my toe nails. Today is going to be a GREAT day. I am super duper excited. Can’t wait to fill you all in. Have an amazing day friends!

Veggie Nut Pizza

It’s Friday!

I will be spending my day running errands, getting a workout in, cleaning, and planning and preparing food for this weekend. We are going to be cabin bound tomorrow and I am so ecstatic for a mini getaway. We will be heading to my aunt and uncle’s cabin (actually two of my uncle’s cabins) and my mom and dad are going too. There will be loads of relaxing, laughs, and hopefully lots of sun involved. It will be the cure for my ailments. 🙂 I am in a much more positive mood today compared to the other day and it feels good. I still have some decisions to make regarding my diet, but I am not stressing about it anymore.

Let’s back the train up a bit and talk about Thursday shall we? I had a real good day of eats yesterday.

Starting with breakfast…


A two ingredient pancake. In my mini blender, I blended one ripe banana with one egg.

I should have added a dash of cinnamon to the blender, but since I forgot, I sprinkled it on after I poured the pancake batter into a lightly oiled pan on the stove top.

I cooked the pancake over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, or until the bottom was beginning to lightly brown and then flipped to the other side. It was a challenge flipping this guy over and I broke it into a few pieces in the process. I cooked the other side for another 3-4 minutes. It finished cooking right in time before I had to head out the door to work. I tossed the warm pancake into a Tupperware container, topped it with a teaspoon of peanut butter, and off I went.

Lunch

I was feeling pretty hungry yesterday and my tummy was really talking to me around 11:00 am, but I had to wait until noon to eat lunch. I ran home at break (not literally) and threw together a bowl of cooked carrots and butternut squash sprinkled with cinnamon and almond butter. So far it was a nut butter and cinnamon-y kind of day!

I had another bite of almond butter and some watermelon to finish off lunch before having to head back to work. BTW if you think the almond butter looks a little dry, it’s because it is. 🙂 I used a little sunflower oil in the mixing process to try and smooth it out but apparently it wasn’t enough. I still really enjoy it though.

Gym and Dinner

After work I headed to the gym but really wasn’t in the mood for a workout. I was feeling a little bloated and was completely wiped from my day. I decided to make it an easy one and nestled myself onto an elliptical with a copy of Rachael Ray’s magazine. I finished off 30 minutes and called it a day.

Now, dinner is something I am excited to talk about. I got pretty creative in the kitchen last night and concocted a stinkin’ awesome recipe, and it follows the SCD too! I made what I like to call Veggie Nut Pizza, and I blew myself out of the water with this one if I do say so myself.

Get that oven going to 350°.

The first step is to grate zucchini and carrots into a large mixing bowl. I had frozen grated zucchini leftover from last fall so i thought I would use that up finally. I used about 1/2 cup zucchini with the water squeezed out. I grated about 3 carrots to make 1 cup of shreds. Next, I added 1 cup of almond flour, 1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese, 1 egg, 1 egg white, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, 1/4 teaspoon dried basil, and cracked black pepper. I mixed it all up.

On a baking sheet, I used a paper towel to lightly coat the pan with olive oil. I placed the pizza dough on to baking sheet and spread it out evenly. I used a 9 x 13 baking sheet and the dough didn’t cover the whole thing. The crust was about 1/2 inch thick.

Bake for 35 minutes. The top of the pizza should have a light golden color once it’s done baking.

Next, top the pizza with marinara sauce (I made homemade SCD marinara last weekend and froze it), cheddar cheese, a sprinkle of parmesan, and whatever toppings you have on hand. I had mushrooms and olives so I threw some of those on. I went light on the cheese on top of the pizza because there’s some in the crust already. Bake the pizza for 12-15 minutes.

While the pizza baked, I snacked on some cooked carrots.

Once the cheese had melted on top, I switched the oven to low broil, to finish off the top and set the cheese just how I like it. You probably wouldn’t have to go through this step, but both Dana and I are kind of particular about how we like our cheese melted on our pizzas.

Remove from oven, slice up, and seriously enjoy.

I am telling you, this pizza will rock your socks. It is gluten-free and fits right into the SCD. Sure it takes a little prep, but this one is completely 100% worth it. Dana and I finished the pizza off with no problem. Yum.

Veggie Nut Pizza

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup zucchini, grated and drained
  • 1 cup carrot, grated
  • 1 cup almond flour or meal
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/4 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp dried basil
  • cracked black pepper (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°
  2. Mix all ingredients together
  3. Flatten pizza onto lightly oiled 9 x 13 inch baking sheet
  4. Bake for 35 minutes or until lightly golden*
  5. Remove crust and add sauce, cheese, and toppings
  6. Bake for an additional 12-15 minutes*
  7. Remove, cut into slices, and enjoy

*Baking times will vary; keep an eye on your pizza!

It really was a good day of eats! I am off to get some work done. I hope you all are having a wonderful Friday. I will catch up with you all soon.

Kabobs and Family Time

Well, we survived Monday! I always feel a sense of accomplishment from making it through my least favorite day. 🙂

Breakfast

For breakfast I made a bowl of yogurt with honey and bananas and drank a cup of weak coffee (that’s allowed!).

Lunch

Pulled chicken with honey mustard dressing and cooked carrots with a touch of honey and salt.

And a half a ‘naner with peanut butter, plus 2 more bites of peanut butter with some homemade SCD crackers.

Dinner

After work, I headed to mom and dad’s to enjoy our last evening with Jeff before he headed back to Colombia.

Kevi and I were wearing the same shirt last night so of course my nerdy self had to snap a photo. Wooo Warriors! Thanks for humoring me so often, Kev. You’re such a good sport.

For dinner mom and dad were busy making and grilling shrimp and chicken kabobs. The copious amount of food looks like they were feeding an army, but in reality, I would say all but one of those bad boys got eaten. There were a lot of men at our house! We had Dad, Grandpa, Jeff, Kevin, and Dana all there, and they were hungry. Mom and I didn’t do so bad ourselves either. This is basically what our food quantities looked like growing up with three teenage boys and my dad around the house. Mom would always joke that her paycheck went right to the groceries.

I asked mom and dad to keep mine and Dana’s separate because we have to be careful with our sauces and seasonings with the SCD. I found a “jerk seasoning” in their cupboard that had all legal ingredients, so I sprinkled our kabobs with that prior to grilling. The seasoning definitely had a kick but it wasn’t too spicy that I couldn’t handle it.

On the kabobs: bell pepper, mushroom, shrimp, zucchini (no skin thanks to mom), chicken, and onion.

I had at least one and a half of these plus a whole lot of watermelon. We had so much fun together last night. We sat around for a couple of hours and chatted away, and amidst our conversation I came to the conclusion that if I were stuck on a deserted island and could only have one food item, mine would totally be peanut butter. If I had two food items, it would be peanut butter and banana. Dad’s would be hot dogs. That still cracks me up! Grandpa’s would be roast beef, Dana’s would be a club sandwich on sourdough but everyone decided that was too complex and that’s cheating, mom would want lobster, and Kevin and Jeff both were being too difficult to give me a straight answer. Jeff said Whole Foods Market and Kevin said a sandwich full of steak and chicken and meatballs,and veggies, etc.

After our imaginative conversations, it was time for us to hit the home-front .We said our good-bye’s and Jeff gave us a gift he brought from Colombia: Colombian coffee. Oh yes. I am excited to break into that! It’s always hard saying good-bye, but this one was a little easier knowing I was going to be seeing him in the Fall, and being that time has been absolutely FLYING by, I know it won’t seem like long. We sure love having him home though!

It was such a great night with the family, we were just missing our Scotty. Jeffrey, can’t wait to see you in the Fall but feel free to come home before that if you want though. 😉 I love my family so much I can’t even begin to explain. I feel so lucky.

Have a terrific Tuesday. I’ll catch up with you later. Oh and btw, not too happy with the Bachelorette outcome last night…

Question of the day: What one food item would you choose if you were stuck on a deserted island?

Grab a Snack

I really like that word, “snack.” I don’t know if it brings on a feeling of comfort or what it is, but when I hear the word it makes me happy. It makes me think of snuggling on the couch and watching a movie; it gives me a cozy feeling. I also love during Rachael Ray’s show when she is about to go into a commercial break and says, “go grab a snack and come on back.” I am a weirdo I am aware. But, speaking of snacks, I have some of my favorite SCD snacks to share with you all. Even if you aren’t following the SCD, these snacks are healthy and delicious options if you are in need of a little pick-me-up.

But first, let’s recap dinner last night because it was pretty darn tasty. I sautéed asparagus spears and green peas in a tiny bit of butter and seasoned with salt and pepper. I also had shrimp cocktail with homemade cocktail sauce made from SCD ketchup and horseradish. On the side, butter lettuce with homemade honey mustard sauce.

Honey mustard: mustard, Dijon mustard, honey, and apple cider vinegar.

For me, the asparagus and pea sauté stole the show. I love those two veggies. Num num.

For dessert I ate a bite of peanut butter with honey. Later in the evening I munched on cooked carrots and applesauce.

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Now, on to those snackies. These have been some of my go-to’s lately. They are all SCD-friendly but like I said, SCD or not, they are great snacks for all.
1. Juicy, sweet watermelon. I keep this stocked up in the fridge, all cut up and ready to go. Sure it’s a little bit of a pain to cut up, but it’s well worth it.

2. Cooked carrots. When I have a little extra time I make a big batch and store them in the fridge so that they are easy to grab. I keep them at eye level so I am more likely to go for them first when in need of some energy.

3. Hard-boiled eggs. These are a great source of protein so if I need something to hold me over for a little while, I eat one of these. I like using our egg slicer to make perfect slices, and I sprinkle with a touch of salt.

4. Yogurt bites. Cool, refreshing, and fun.

5. Banana soft serve or yogurt and honey. It’s like eating ice cream, ’nuff said.

6. Mini muffins made from almond flour. Limit to 1 or 2 mini muffins a day though!

7. Smoothies with fruit, SCD yogurt, and spinach.

8. Banana with nut butter or just a bite of nut butter on its own.

9. And my newest snack addition: Almond Saltine Crackers. I found a great recipe from Comfy Belly’s site.

Here’s how you make them. To begin, preheat your oven to 350°. In a large bowl, mix together 2 cups of almond meal or almond flour with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Next, add 1 egg and 1 tablespoon of olive oil and mix well. It’s okay to use your hands to help mix, I did! Form into 2 balls of dough.

Place a dough ball on a non-stick baking mat or parchment paper, and top the dough with a layer of parchment paper (like a cracker dough sandwich). Use a rolling-pin to roll the dough into a flat large rectangle/circle/whatever shape you can roll it into. Carefully peel off top layer of parchment paper.

You can see mine was far from perfect. It doesn’t matter though! Use a pizza cutter to cut into cracker size rectangles, and transfer the baking mat and crackers to a baking pan. Sprinkle with a light amount of sea salt.

Bake for 20 minutes (baking time with vary so keep an eye on crackers and watch for a lightly golden color and crisp edges).

Split crackers apart.  Once cooled, store in an airtight container and you have a salty snack on hand when you need it. They taste a whole lot like saltine crackers and I really like these salty snacks.

Almond Saltine Crackers (courtesy of Comfy Belly)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups almond meal
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • sprinkle of sea salt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together almond meal and salt.
  3. Add egg and olive oil; mix well and form into 2 balls of dough.
  4. Place a dough ball on a non-stick baking mat, and top the dough with a layer of parchment paper.
  5. Use rolling-pin to roll the dough into a flat large rectangle/circle/or whatever shape (it really doesn’t matter).
  6. Carefully peel off top layer of parchment paper.
  7. Use a pizza cutter to cut into cracker size rectangles, and transfer the baking mat and crackers to a baking pan. Sprinkle with a light amount of sea salt.
  8. Bake for 20 minutes (baking time with vary so keep an eye on crackers for a lightly golden color and crisp edges).
  9. Split crackers apart.  Once cooled, store in an airtight container.

Happy snacking! Oh, and happy Monday? Kidding, yes it will be a happy Monday. Again, I’ll try and be positive about Monday if you will! Catch up with you later.

Banana Soft Serve on a Summer Day

Yesterday’s weather could have not have been more perfect for the pool party. We celebrated our friend Greg’s birthday while lounging at their pool and catching up with friends and family.

I mentioned yesterday that my brother Jeff is home from Bogota, Colombia and it was almost surreal seeing him yesterday at the party. I don’t like going 9 months without seeing him! Dana and I are planning a trip in the fall to go out to Colombia and see him. I’m already excited for it.

We had all but one family member at the party yesterday (we missed you Scotty!), so we, well I, had to make sure and snap a photo. I should photoshop Scott in and then we would be set! Who’s that misfit in the back with the dark hair and dark skin? 😉 Kidding.

I didn’t take any food photos yesterday because I was enjoying myself way too much. It was definitely a little bit of a challenge to find things I could eat that were SCD allowed, but I snacked on boat loads of watermelon (I made sure to bring a ginormous bowl to share), and some other fresh fruit. I did eat some fresh sugar snap peas and grape tomatoes which I probably wasn’t quite ready for but the good news is I feel fine today! For dinner I ate a grilled beef burger with mustard which really hit the spot.

We had a really great time at the party. Thanks for putting that all together Cheryl and Greg!

I was hungry again when we got home that evening so I made a batch of homemade peanut butter. Oh em gee so good. I ate some peanut butter with banana and cooked carrots with honey and salt. Oh, did I mention I had to start all over on the homemade SCD yogurt last night too? Yea, I did. The yogurt was about 20 hours into the cooking process when I remembered that I forgot to put the “starter” yogurt into the milk. I was not a happy camper last night. We made a quick trip to the store and bought another half-gallon of 1% milk and started all over. It will not be done until 11:30 pm tonight. Ha ha…oh well, what can you do besides crab about it a little and get over it?

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Sunday

For breakfast this morning I ate a banana with peanut butter (again). Dana and I were off to a late start because we once again slept in until 8:45 am! We did our standard Sunday morning newspaper and grocery store routine, and I was starving by the time we got home at noon.

For lunch: sautéed spinach and mushrooms in garlic and olive oil, seasoned with salt and pepper, and topped with cheddar cheese and a runny egg.

Yes, that was delicious. Now, it is time to try and be productive around here. I am hoping to get some food prep done for the week ahead, including cooking up some chicken breast, and possibly making homemade marinara sauce!

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In case you’re looking for a healthy cool treat this afternoon, I’ll leave you with this idea for inspiration…

Banana Soft Serve

In your blender (2 servings):

  1. 2 frozen bananas
  2. 1/4 cup (?) homemade SCD yogurt or whatever yogurt you have on hand. Milk would also work here. You may need to add more  yogurt or milk. Use your discretion.
  3. Squirt of honey

Blend away but be patient. It takes a while to break down the frozen bananas. You will need to stop the blending process here and there to mix around the bananas, mash them a little, and incorporate them into the mix. Trust me though, it’s worth it. If you have an ice cream hankering this will do the trick, and that’s coming from an ice cream fanatic.

Happy Sunday friends!