Recipes

Whole30: NSV’s & More

Just a quick one today, as I suppose we should probably talk about this Whole30 thing now that it’s (kind of) over.

The NSV or “non scale victories” that Melissa Hartwig and crew suggest you may experience were… seemingly endless, actually. I went through the worksheet and was able to check off items in every single category excluding brain function and sleep (which are two areas I have struggled with all my life and was not expecting a miracle) so I am mighty pleased with those results. The Boyfriend had a similar experience – his NSVs are marked off with a check mark to the left of the boxes, mine are the x.

Continue reading “Whole30: NSV’s & More”

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Kid-Friendly · Recipes · Soup · Vegetarian · Whole30

Ultra-Faux Pho

This is… this is not even fake pho. This is a supremely lazy/fast approach to a slightly-influenced-by-Vietnamese-Pho dinner, but one that always goes off without a hitch in my house and can pretty much be done with any veg and meat you have. So here it is, my ultra-faux pho.

Your ingredients list can really go any which way you like, but here are the basics for 2-3 servings:

1 quart chicken, beef, or mushroom broth (or half and half meat/veg)
1 lb meat (meatballs, sausage, shredded chicken, etc)
1 vegetable that you can make noodles out of (zucchini, sweet potato)
1-2 handfuls green leafy vegetables (baby bok choy, spinach, etc)
1-2 handfuls chopped mushrooms (optional)
4-6 eggs
Togarashi, to taste

Using a spiralizer, julienne peeler, or just a regular vegetable peeler, turns your noodling vegetable into said noodles. You can also buy pre-noodled zucchini or sweet potato – they are increasingly available in grocery stores (Trader Joe’s sells sweet potato ribbons and they are fantastic).

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Health · Information

Why I’m Going Paleo

In the realm of paleo, primal, keto, slow carb, and Whole30…what you choose to shovel into your face each day really comes down to personal preference. For most of the last 4.5 years, I have been following the slow carb diet as per Tim Ferriss’s book The 4-Hour Body. This summer, after a second round of Whole30 (which you can read about here), I’ve decided to make a small yet simultaneously substantial change. I’m going paleo. Strict paleo, not the “here I made paleo blueberry muffins” kind of nonsense. Basically Whole30 with select days to enjoy my food freedom.

I could probably spend a full day talking your ears eyes off about why I’m making the switch, and The Boyfriend is joining me too, but instead I’ve broken it down into a few main points.

Results: This round of Whole30 has been so wonderfully successful for me, for both physical health and mental health and yes, weight loss too. My weight is something I’ve struggled with quite a bit since my muscle disease started showing itself back in 2010. (Which reminds me, I haven’t done a chronic illness update in years at this point, coming right up!) I made more progress in weight loss and chronic pain relief on this Whole30 than in the last few years of slow carb combined. A paleo-leaning lifestyle just works better with my body and my life and really, that’s enough on its own to make me switch things up.

Continue reading “Why I’m Going Paleo”

Information · Whole30

Fridge & Pantry Essentials: Whole30

In a previous post I mentioned that The Boyfriend and I (and 11 of our friends and relatives that I annoyed into submission) would be doing a Whole30 challenge this month. This is my second time doing it, and I had great results in terms of health and how I felt after the first one we did in November 2015 (pro-tip: would not recommend doing it over a major holiday).

This past week, after all the holiday festivities, I Whole30-fied our entire fridge and pantry – ditched all the things that make us sick and we should avoid longterm (anything with soy, really) and hid all the other indulgent stuff that wasn’t going to expire for a while (mostly just the hot fudge and the balsamic glaze). With so many of our friends (and my mom!) doing Whole30 for the first time, I was reminded just how much work went into the “spices and condiments” category of finding approved foods. Even for the basics, like salad dressing, the compliant options available to us are often limited at best. Five years into the slow carb game and on the heels of my second Whole30 and a new paleo life, here are the spice blends, condiments, and other pantry staples I rely on to get meals done. Each item will be labeled for Paleo, Whole30, and/or Slow Carb.

Let me know in the comments if you guys like this “Essentials” series, I’ve got plenty more ideas!

Teeny Tiny Spice Company Tandoori Masalapaleo, whole30, slow carb – Sadly my beloved British Curry is not Whole30 compliant due to some added maple sugar (ok for paleo), but the brand’s Tandoori Masala is an excellent consolation prize. I love to use it in my Indian style chicken curries with onions, garlic, and broccoli. It also makes a great marinade mixed with coconut milk for slow cooked chicken, crispy chicken thighs*, and lamb too.

* this recipe calls for both the British Curry and Tandoori Masala blends, you can definitely just use the Tandoori Masala! I would probably add some turmeric for good measure.

Continue reading “Fridge & Pantry Essentials: Whole30”

Health · Information · Recipes · Whole30

Whole30 + Ice Cubes

If you checked out my most recent recipe or follow me on Instagram, you may have picked up on some recent little grumblings about Whole30. It’s often referred to as the Whole30 challenge, but it’s essentially a 30 day elimination diet that sounds a lot like paleo on steroids… or I guess, paleo on definitely no steroids whatsoever. The Boyfriend and I completed a round of Whole30 in November of 2015 and despite the struggle of sticking to the rules through Thanksgiving and managing the lack of local/seasonal produce in the winter, it was an overwhelmingly positive experience. We learned so much about our bodies – well, my body mostly – like that I am super sensitive to soy, and for the sake of my skin as well as any living creature in my general vicinity, I should probably not consume dairy, even on slow carb’s allotted cheat days.

We’re coming up on two years since our first Whole30 and I have been itching for another one. If we could make it through a round in November, then summer – with farmers’ markets and damn near everything in bloom – should be a piece of cake (except actually not cake at all because it’s definitely not Whole30 approved).

Continue reading “Whole30 + Ice Cubes”

Poultry · Recipes · Whole30

Thai Red Curry Chicken

I don’t know what it is about Thai food, but I crave it constantly. Much to my dismay, rice noodles do not fit anywhere into our slow carb or Whole30 lives, so I’ve had to learn to cook some of the good stuff all on my own. This Thai Red Curry chicken is so easy and quick, this might be a new weekly event in our house!

I get our Thai Red Curry paste from a local brand called Thai & True, but any brand is fine as long as it is slow carb/paleo/Whole30 compliant (whichever one you need it to be). I also use a wok-style oil that’s infused with lemongrass and ginger, but this is just something I have on hand and like to use, any cooking fat will do just fine for this recipe! In general, I highly recommend avocado oil and beef tallow for most cooking needs (though beef tallow may not be the best choice for this particular recipe).

Equipment:  
Large non-stick pan
Spatula or stirring utensil

Ingredients: 
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 small onion, finely chopped
4-6 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
4 tbsp Thai Red Curry paste
1 13oz can coconut milk
1-2 tbsp fresh Thai basil, stemmed
1-2 tbsp fresh scallions, thinly sliced
1-2 tbsp cooking oil
1/2 tsp coriander
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste

Continue reading “Thai Red Curry Chicken”

Beef · CrockPot · Lamb · Poultry · Recipes · Soup · Vegetarian

Two Years: My Top 20 Recipes!

Wow, I can’t believe it’s been TWO YEARS since I first created SlowCarbSnacktime. It’s been a long road learning how to eat properly and fuel my body, and there’s still a very long journey ahead, but it has been such an amazing and educational adventure so far and I’ve come up with so many healthy slow carb recipes along the way. There’s many more to come, but for now, I’m celebrating two years of SlowCarbSnacktime with my top 20 recipes.

All 20 of these recipes are grain, gluten, sugar, corn, potato, rice, and soy-free. Two recipes use some dairy, but I’ll make sure to note that in the list. I will also note paleo and whole30 compliant recipes (they are obviously all slow carb compliant). Items marked “vegetarian” are either vegetarian or can easily be made so by changing an ingredient such as swapping out chicken stock for vegetable stock.

  1. Amazeballs: Super Scallion Turkey Meatballs – paleo/whole30 – I used ground pork rinds instead of bread crumbs to give these meatballs the fluffiness they need without the carbs you don’t want.
  2. B^3: Butternut Bacon Bitespaleo/whole30 – It may take a few minutes to wrap these precious little pieces of squash in strips of bacon, but I promise it’s worth every second of your time.
    IMG_20140101_092322
  3. Butternut Squeek Soupvegetarian, paleo/whole30 – There are few things better than a hot butternut squash soup on a cold winter day… this soup with butternut squash plus leeks is one of them.
  4. Chicken Liver Mousse – dairy – Okay, I’m not going to lie, there’s a lot of butter in this recipe, but it is one of the easiest things to make for a classy dish to stun your guests without sacrificing protein. Also tastes great with eggs for breakfast, or by itself on a very large spoon…

    Beautifully set. Dig in!
    Beautifully set. Dig in!
  5. Decontamination: Ginger Chicken Souppaleo/whole30 – The perfect comeback to any cold, my chicken soup is infused with a ton of ginger to help combat the ickiest of feelings. A favorite of my dad’s to fight back against chronic sinus infections.
  6. Duck Duck Asparaguspaleo/whole30 – Crispy asparagus oven-roasted in duck fat. The way to my heart is through my stomach.
  7. Easy Peas-y: Split Pea Soup w/ Sausage – One of The Boyfriend’s favorites, I boil the sausage in chicken stock and then use that stock in the soup. So rich, so good.
    IMG_20131118_102852
  8. “Gazpacheaux” Gazpachovegetarian, paleo/whole30 – This cold tomato soup is a perfect snack to beat the summer heat or spoon into shot glasses for a classier kind of party.
  9. Hold the Sizzle: Fiery Chicken Fajitas – paleo/whole30 – This spicy little stir fry is a great option for a protein-packed dinner for two and tastes great with strips of beef too!
  10. Holy Crap! Garlic Soupvegetarian, paleo/whole30 – Over 20 cloves of garlic and a whole head of cauliflower into the pot for a super smooth, bright white soup.
  11. Kimchi Fried Cauli-Rice – paleo/whole30 – Cauliflower rice, kimchi, eggs, and bacon fat. What more could you want?
  12. Lamb Chop’s Play Along: One Baaaaad Burgerpaleo/whole30 – This ground lamb burger with fresh rosemary is so juicy, sticking it on a bun would just be a waste.
  13. Perfect ‘Stachio Guacvegetarian, paleo/whole30 – My copy cat version of the stunning guacamole at Jose Garces’ El Vez. Never pay $14 for guac again.
    P1010122
  14. Red Lentils are Dal-iciousvegetarian – My take on a traditional Indian dal, prepared in a slow cooker using red lentils and a ton of fresh spinach. I crave this all the time and it’s a great dish entirely on its own, paired with a meaty protein, or even reheated in a pan with some eggs!
  15. Rosemary Bone Brothcrockpot, paleo/whole30 – This slow-cooked broth is made from beef soup/marrow bones and cooks on low for nearly two days to extract all the vitamin goodness from the bones. When it’s cold, it looks like jell-o, but warm it up for a mineral-packed cup of life. Seriously, I know how cheesy that sounds, just try it. It’s amazing.
    20140523_1634433
  16. Saturday Morning Shakshuka / Date Night Zoodlesvegetarian, paleo/whole30 – These two quick dishes pair great together for a meal so tasty, you won’t even realize there’s no meat!
  17. Sweet Hundos: Oven-Roasted Cherry Tomato Saucevegetarian, paleo/whole30 – This super easy tomato sauce is made with “Sweet 100’s” cherry tomatoes and is unlike any sauce I’ve tasted before. I just couldn’t get enough and ate half the jar with a spoon. Serve with just about anything.

    Mmm saucy!
    Mmm saucy!
  18. Top Secret Deviled Eggs / Devilish Egg Salad – My go-to potluck dish and an easy alternative for cravings at home.
  19. Tiny Viking Funerals – cheat day, dairy – Jalapenos stuffed with chorizo and cream cheese. A cheat day treat guaranteed to knock the socks off all your friends.
    20140209_1734100
  20. Whatsername Fish Tacos – Chickpea flour-crusted tilapia fillets and large lettuce leaves make for this delicate but delicious taco dinner. You won’t even miss the tortillas.
Recipes · Soup

Turnip For What: Winter Mushroom Soup

Woo-hoo! The first semester of grad school is finally over. New recipes posted created by slowcarbsnacktime, 1/4 MHA. No but seriously, I finished the semester with straight As for the first time since sixth grade and I am feeling so relieved and ready to write.

If you follow me on instagram or facebook, you may have heard that our Whole30 adventures went exceedingly well. The Boyfriend and I each lost about 10 lbs and he is down nearly two inches on his waist! We just started a new lifting program so I didn’t expect to see much in the way of inches lost, but all my jiggly bits are definitely less jiggly. Bonus: a lot of my chronic stomach issues seem to have disappeared on Whole30 as well (I am guessing because of sneaky soy lecithin hidden everywhere that we weren’t so strict about before). For this reason, we’ve decided to give strict paleo a whirl and see how it stands up to slow carb. For the time being, I will do my best to create and share recipes compliant with all three – slow carb, paleo, and whole30 – but you should always make sure to check my ingredients anyway just to be safe.

One of my first winter break creations was this damn delicious mushroom soup that came together so quickly and paired great with The Boyfriend’s pan seared pork chops.

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For this recipe you will need:
1 large pot
Immersion blender
Vegetable peeler

Ingredients: 
1.5 lbs white button mushrooms, sliced
1 lg yellow onion, diced
1 turnip, peeled and coarsely chopped
1/2 can coconut milk (Thai Kitchen)
2 tsp white vinegar
2 qts (8 cups) chicken or beef stock

Seasoning:
2-3 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
1/2 tsp celery salt
1 tbsp granulated garlic
1/2 tsp sage

Notes:

#1 – pretty much any mushroom will do, but I’ve been on a huge button mushroom kick lately and they’re also super cheap, so that’s what I used.

#2 – if possible, get the Thai Kitchen brand coconut milk (in the red can). For whatever reason, the milk is separated with solid cream at the top and the liquid at the bottom. I only added the cream and it was amazing. Mushrooms and onions already give off a ton of liquid and with two quarts of chicken stock, we didn’t need any more. Just adding the cream (all of it) made for a super creamy and rich soup, completely dairy free. A regular can of coconut milk will do just fine (in the can, not the carton), but I highly recommend that brand if you can swing it.

#3 – if you’ve seen some of my soup recipes in the past, you may have noticed I’m a big fan of blended soups. It’s a trick my step-grandma used to pull on us when we were kids to eat her (seriously delicious) healthy soups without picking out ingredients we didn’t like. It’s a trend that stuck and my go-to state for soups, but if you want a bit more chunk, just chop your mushrooms and turnip into small bite-sized pieces and ditch the Immersion blender.

#4 – I used chicken stock today because it’s all we had at home, but I suspect it would be even more delicious with beef broth. This soup (and most others on my blog) can also be made vegan in a pinch by subbing in vegetable broth.

Recipe:

Peel the turnip, removing ends, and chop into large chunks. Thoroughly wash all mushrooms with water. Seriously, they grow in poo, wash them well. Transfer mushrooms to a large bowl. Dice the onion and add it to the bowl of mushrooms.

Drizzle 1-2 tbsp of oil over the mushroom-onion mixture and toss gently to coat.

Melt 1 tbsp of ghee or olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and onion to pot and allow to gently fry, stirring occasionally (to ensure even browning) until reduced by half – about ten minutes. As I said above, mushrooms and onions hold a lot of water, so when you first add them to the pot it will take up a lot of space. As the mushrooms cook, they will give up a lot of this water and shrink down taking up half as much space in the pot as they did when raw. Add ~1 tbsp granulated garlic.

Add the chopped turnip to the pot and 1tsp of salt, mixing again to make sure everything got a little bit of time on the bottom of the pot to brown up. This caramelization packs a ton of flavor and will add some serious depth to your soup.

Add in two quarts of stock, mix again, and bring to a boil – stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and allow soup to simmer for 20-25 minutes before adding the coconut cream/milk. Remove from heat and let cream melt before blending the soup. Blend to desired consistency and return to low heat.

Add 1tsp salt, cracked pepper, and celery salt, and sage to taste and allow to simmer for another 10-15 minutes, until soup thickens.

Sometimes a few pieces miss the blender so if the soup isn’t smooth enough for you, now is the time to blend it again (remove the pot from the stove to do this).

Return pot to heat to help marry flavors. Adjust seasonings to taste and serve immediately. Finish with truffle salt or a swirl of coconut cream (optional).

Allow to cool completely before storing in the refrigerator. To reheat, add desired amount of cold soup to a small pot. Bring to a low boil on medium-high heat and serve.

Health · Information · Progress

November News & Whole30

Wow, grad school is kicking my butt right now. I never had any intention of letting myself get this far away from the blog and for that, I apologize. People said it would happen, but I just didn’t want to believe it! I’m up to my eyeballs in homework these days so I’ve been pretty slow on writing and updating new recipes. That said, I’m still super active on Instagram and Facebook, so follow me there for all sorts of news, info, and updates while I work out some new recipes.

So let’s see, important things to share…

#1. I haven’t discussed it too much yet, but if everything goes according to plan, I will be traveling to Israel this January! I am so very excited for this trip, and while I definitely will be eating anything I can taste while I’m there, I’ll be walking it all off with one of my biggest fears (and part of the reason I postponed this trip for so long) – a hike up Masada. I’ve been training extra hard in anticipation for this trip, so if you follow me on Fitocracy you’ll be seeing a lot more deadlifts and cardio for the next few months!

#2. Following a heated discussion on Reddit, I just wanted to reiterate that, despite the fear-mongering and ignoring-actual-science approach many health writers/blogs use to back up their claims, that is not what I do here at Slow Carb Snacktime. While I do reference Tim Ferriss’ The 4-Hour Body a lot, I also do my research and share or cite peer-reviewed studies whenever possible (obviously not going to happen on my own recipes). Please, question everything and do your research before uprooting your lifestyle to avoid “yoga mat chemical” because some uneducated twit said you should. End rant.

#3. If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you may have noticed a lot more makeup-related posts lately. It’s my newest hobby and the most relaxing form of self-expression (for me) outside of the kitchen. When I’m not neglecting social media, you can find me occasionally posting on my makeup-focused tumblr as well.

#4. As you may have seen mentioned on both Facebook and Instagram, The Boyfriend and I have decided a new challenge is in order. After a successful Sober September, but otherwise stalled weight loss (lots of lifting progress though), we’ve decided to go ahead and give Whole30 a whirl! It’s a little different from slow carb, more like super strict paleo, but the mission is the same (high protein, moderate fat, no sugar). There’s no cheat day, but some fruit is permitted so I’m really looking forward to trying an alternative approach to improving health and losing weight (which you’re not allowed to track at all for 30 days!) It’s just us for Thanksgiving so we’re gonna power through and go to Christmas Eve. I’ll post as many recipes as I can, and will definitely be sharing other news and info about our whole30 adventures frequently via Facebook and Instagram.

#5. In response to the excessive liberties people seem to be taking with their low carb high protein lifestyles, abuse of “cleaneating” and other related tags, and the frustration it causes me, I’ll be using the tag #THISISWHATCLEANEATINGACTUALLYLOOKSLIKE as much as possible on all my Whole30 posts from now on. If you work hard to stick to your program rather than finding a way to work around the rules, please join me in using this tag. As so eloquently stated in the Whole30 rules, a sentiment I have often shared – “Continuing to eat your old, unhealthy foods made with Whole30 ingredients is totally missing the point, and will tank your results faster than you can say “Paleo Pop-Tarts.” Remember, these are the same foods that got you into health-trouble in the first place—and a pancake is still a pancake, regardless of the ingredients.”

#6. A popular topic on YouTube, I’ve been watching a lot of “Fall Favorites” videos lately so I’ve decided to share mine as well:

  • InTouch leggings – My favorite leggings, you can dress them up or down without having to worry about your underwear showing through.
  • Adidas Amberlight wedge sneaker – I’ve been on the hunt for a good wedge sneaker forever and finally found these babies at the Adidas store last week. They are so comfortable and look great with anything, plus they’re actually normal width for normal feet (unlike super-narrow Nike).
  • 50lb kettlebell – The 50-pound kettlebell is my new go-to for workouts to help with mobility and flexibility for my deadlifts.
  • Purity Farms Organic Ghee – Find it at your local Whole Foods, this clarified butter is some of the best I’ve had and makes for an absolutely delicious Whole30-compliant omelette!
  • Fed Up – The newest food documentary to hit theaters, this one was spearheaded by Katie Couric and takes a look at sugar consumption in the US.
  • Kate Spade planner – Between grad school, two blogs, home ownership with The Boyfriend, and job hunting, I rely pretty heavily on my adorable Kate Spade planner to keep me organized.
  • Sherpani bag – The newest addition to my purse collection, this cross-body tote is perfect for travel or an active lifestyle in the crazy Oregon weather. I picked this up for my Israel trip, but it’s already my new favorite.
  • Tretorn Rain Boots – I used to hate rainboots and pretty much refused to wear them, riiight up until we moved to Oregon. Now I am constantly grateful my mom made me buy a pair to keep my toes dry in the never-ending rain!
  • Lauren Conrad Beauty – Surprisingly simple, but helpful book full of tips, advice, and beauty basics.
  • Benefit Total Moisture Facial Cream – Normally my skin is super oily, but come winter in Oregon, my face feels like sandpaper and this seems to be the most helpful product so far. The rest of the time, I use The Body Shop’s seaweed mattifying day cream.