Thursday, March 13, 2014

TIGER BLOOD! March - Days 10 & 11

Well, Phil and I were able to fork-five over our delicious stuffed acorn squash last night because we made it through day 10 without quitting! According to Whole30, days 10 & 11 are the hardest days, with day 10 being the day you are most likely to quit the whole thing altogether and go on a cake bender.  But, alas, we did not! We didn't even come close, really.  It helped that for dinner we were able to whip up a paleo-version of a dish we make all the time, so it was quite easy to even just ignore the fact entirely that we were doing anything different. 

The dish that helped get us through, you might ask? Apple and Bacon Acorn Squash, which I adapted from a recipe by Door to Door Organics (the nice people who leave a box of organic produce on our front stoop every week).  It's almost paleo-friendly as is, but with a few minor substitutions it is 100% paleo friendly....

Here are the ingredients:

6 slices bacon      
3 small carrots       
1 acorn squash       
½ cups sliced almonds       
1 tbs maple syrup  
1/8 cups heavy cream  The cream and syrup can be left out entirely and the dish would still be delicious, but we substituted some of my homemade paleo coffee creamer (coconut milk and date puree) and it turned out a-ok.
¼ cups breadcrumbs (optional)  This is optional to begin with, so is easily left out (which is what we did), but you could theoretically sub some ground up nuts or something like that to mimic the effect of breadcrumbs.
1 large apple       
1/8 cups white wine      
salt and pepper to taste

Oh, and we in the past have added bleu cheese to the recipe as a delicious little extra topping, so we of course had to leave that out.  But all in all, it was still extremely delicious and filling.

I also decided to treat us by attempting to make paleo banana bread.  I adapted this recipe from Civilized Caveman.  Basically I just left out the baking soda and baking powder, since they are not technically paleo during those more strict experimental phases like we are in (long-term, they'd be acceptable in moderation, I believe).  I also cut the recipe in half because Phil ate two of the four bananas I was planning to use.  Silly, banana-eating Phil. 

Of course, there is a lot of debate around paleo baked goods.  Some people believe trying to make the foods you used to eat and would crave and indulge in fit into the paleo box defeats the purpose of overcoming food habits, etc., because you are still satisfying that part of you that craves sweet, bread-y yummables.  Willy Wonka is a skeptic for sure...

But, whatever, we had some overly ripe bananas, and all the other ingredients on hand, so I went for it. 

What's the verdict on paleo baked goods, you may be wondering?  Disappointing.  The texture is good and moist, but the flavor leaves a bit to be lacking. Sugar, namely.  In hindsight, I wish I had thrown some date paste in the mix to add a bit more sweet flavor.  Next time.  

 Long-term, I think I'd rather just save the baked goods for my cheat meals, and eat the real deal.  But good to know there are options for making quasi-baked goods that are paleo if the need arises.  I probably won't experiment with baked goods beyond this during our 30 days. Not worth it.

Lastly, check out the delicious soup Phil made.  That right there is Coconut Curried Butternut Squash Soup.  So good. The only thing missing was something crunchable (I have a weird need to chew all my food - soups, ice creams, etc., that don't have chunks of stuff that require chewing are not appealing to me), so I threw in some crushed up cashews. Om. Nom. Nom.

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