Whole30: Day 5
Typically, I skip any content that has anything to do with resolutions, diets, getting back to the gym, etc., etc., in the new year, because I think the topic is a little boring. This year, however, I've heard many people declare that they are not giving themselves new yer's resolutions in 2018 and instead are choosing to expend their energy externally, beyond themselves, to improve the lives of those around them.
Additionally, I've read many articles online about those refusing to be pressured into joining a gym, when it's just not their scene, and choosing to love their bodies as they are. And I am all for it.
So, in the spirit of picking up a more sustainable habit and setting realistic expectations for myself, I've decided to try the Whole30 this month. As many know, the Whole30 is a diet that is notoriously difficult to follow. The list of non-compliant foods exceeds the list of what you're allowed to eat, and the amount of planning that goes into creating meals requires a level of organization that I don't quite possess. As someone who has never prioritized cooking beyond canned soup and instance rice, I avoid pushing myself in the kitchen, and I've developed an appreciation for blandness that is borderline depressing.
That being said, the reason behind my decision to try Whole30 is not to lose weight or never set foot into a restaurant again. Instead, I'm embracing this opportunity to teach myself how to reliably cook a handful of recipes that I like, using predominantly non-processed ingredients, and grocery shop more effectively.
I'm officially 5 days into the Whole30 and already I've cooked blackened salmon fillets twice for dinner, veggie-packed omelets for breakfast, and egg cups for a midday snack. Everything has gone relatively smoothly thus far except for breakfasts; I've basically had nothing but scrambled eggs with sauteed veggies every morning since I started the diet. Cut to a couple of days ago, desperate to introduce variety into my meals, I found a recipe for a banana, apple bowl with cinnamon, almond butter, and toasted coconut. This morning, I'm happy to report, I made this very very easy breakfast and it turned out surprisingly yummy. If you aren't participating in any crazy diet this year, I just recommend this dish on the basis that it is wonderful. All you need is:
Unsweetened shredded coconut
Preheat oven to 350°
cut of the apple and banana into bite-size pieces and combine them in a bowl
Pile up some coconut on a sheet of aluminum foil and sprinkle in a pinch of salt (this will bring out the natural sweetness of the coconut, it makes a difference, I swear)
Put the coconut in the oven
be sure not to leave the coconut shreds in the oven for too long, they will brown very very quickly, you might just need to keep an eye on them until there's a lovely mixture of white and brown on the sheet
Once the coconut has browned to your liking, carefully remove the aluminum foil and let the shreds cool for a moment on the counter
Add a generous amount of almond butter to the apple and banana slices and dust with cinnamon
Sprinkle on as much of the toasted coconut as you'd like and ENJOY
Pair this bowl with a cup of coffee and a book (if that's your thing) and you have a quick and easy, Whole30-compliant breakfast that basically tastes like dessert.
I'll be completely honest, the first full day I attempted the diet, I got sucked into writing, realized I went way too long without eating and staggered through Whole Foods at about 4pm in a complete haze, blindly putting what I thought were Whole30-compliant products in my cart. Come to realize when I got home, I'd missed so many essentials that my recipe range has been somewhat limited. I'm learning as I go though, and if you would also like to follow along with this challenge as I teach myself to eat cleaner and effectively cook protein without infecting myself with salmonella, follow my blog via the link in the widget on the right-hand of this post, or, just keep checking in! More to come.