Whole 30/Primal Blueprint: Day 2 and Curried Carrot Ginger Soup Recipe

I didn’t get to the store until the evening, so breakfast and lunch remained boring yesterday. To be fair, my meals would have been boring even if I weren’t doing the Whole 30/Primal Blueprint because I had a bunch of leftovers that I had to eat either way. When I finally got to the store, I picked up a few essential ingredients including coconut milk, coconut flakes, coconut oil (noticing a theme?), avocado oil, apple chicken sausage, and more eggs. I already had carrots, onions, butternut squash, spaghetti squash, and cauliflower on hand, so I promise that my upcoming meals will be more exciting.

I’ve been getting a lot of carrots in my winter CSA, so a few weeks ago I made this curried carrot soup and it was really good. I decided to make it again last night, and I adapted the recipe so that I could add ginger and coconut milk for a creamier and more flavorful soup. I always thought that immersion blenders were pointless, but after making a creamy soup twice in the past couple of weeks, I may have to add one to my wish list.

While making soup for dinner, I learned that Better Than Bouillon contains sugar. Unfortunately, it was the only thing I had on hand for stock, so I had to use it for my soup anyway. I guess that means that I’ve already broken one of the rules of the Whole 30, but I’m not going to sweat it. Once the bouillon is gone, I’ll either start making my own or buy a version of stock without added sugar.

Note: today is actually day 3 of the Whole 30 for me, but I’m posting about each day after it happened so that I can include how I slept.

What I ate:

Breakfast: two eggs scrambled in olive oil with green bell pepper and onion, a banana, Irish breakfast tea, with a mug of Lipton superfruit green tea later in the morning (neither tea with added sweetener)

Morning snack: smoked almonds

Lunch: leftover turkey taco meat and green beans, frozen strawberries and peaches

Dinner: leftover marinated pork and carrot curry ginger soup

How I felt: I felt fine, the dull headache I had all day the day before seems to have subsided. I was still pretty tired, but yesterday was my last day on antibiotics, so I hope that I start to improve soon. I was hungry at various points throughout the day, but not terribly so. I could barely finish my soup at dinner, not because I didn’t like it, but because I was so darn full! The quantify of food that I’m eating seems to be a lot less than usual, but I’m not nearly as hungry throughout the day.

How I slept: I slept very, very poorly last night. I had a hard time getting to sleep (not that unusual for me), and then I woke up around 5:30 when the dog starting rustling around in his crate. I think I can attribute the poor sleep to having a lot on my mind.

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Curried Carrot Ginger Soup

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 tablespoons chopped ginger
  • 1 onion
  • coconut oil for sauteing onion
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Chop onion and saute in coconut oil until translucent.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer.
  3. Simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until carrots are tender.
  4. Blend with immersion blender or blender/food processor until smooth.

Turkey Rice Soup

After Thanksgiving, I was given a ton of leftover turkey. I tried my hand at making stock with the turkey carcasses and ended up with several quarts of stock in my freezer. As for the actual meat, I ate as much turkey as I could – I put it on salads, I made turkey shepherd’s pie, I ate it with leftover gravy and stuffing. After a week of eating leftover turkey for lunch and for dinner every day, I’d had enough. The rest of the turkey joined the stock in the freezer.

After two months of active avoidance, turkey and I reunited today and I made a turkey rice soup. This soup was really simple because the homemade turkey stock already had a lot of flavor. I meant to add corn, but I forgot. It would also be good with peas or green beans.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I intend to eat soup while watching The Puppy Bowl.

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Turkey Rice Soup Recipe

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 quarts turkey stock
  • 1 onion
  • 2 stalks of celery
  • 2 large carrots
  • 6 cups chopped or shredded turkey
  • 1 1/4 cups rice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Add turkey stock and turkey meat to a large pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Add the rest of ingredients, turn the heat down to a simmer. Simmer for 45 minutes or until rice is done.

Roasted Salmon with Balsamic Vinegar Glaze

I recently acquired the book Cooking Light What to Eat: A Real-World Guide to Making Smart Choices recommended by my friend Jackie. It’s a handy book that that provides tips for choosing the best and healthiest foods for shopping and for deciphering labels on packages at the grocery store. I liked it so much that I bought a copy for my mother. She is now a fan of the book because it doesn’t forbid bacon… I can’t say that I disagree with her.

Anyway, as a result of reading this book, I’ve been working to incorporate more fish into my diet. Luckily, frozen salmon fillets were on sale at Costco, so it seems that the universe was also in favor of me eating more fish. The only thing left to do was to figure out how to prepare all of this salmon. We don’t have a grill, so oven or pan frying are my only real options. I decided on this balsamic vinegar glaze from allrecipes.com. Sam and I both thought that it was too sweet, but liked it other wise. So, I cut the sugar in half, and it’s pretty darn good.

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2.5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pound salmon fillets

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Combine sugar, vinegar, oil, rosemary, garlic, salt, and pepper.
  2. Evenly coat salmon in marinade and let marinate in fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Bake salmon for 10-12 minutes at 400 degrees

Note: the original recipe recommends that you reserve some of the marinade and coat the salmon with it 1 minute before removing from the oven. I try to be efficient in the kitchen (read: I’m super lazy), so I skipped this step.

Balela Salad

A few weeks ago, I sampled balela salad at Trader Joe’s. I really liked it, so I brought some home. As delicious as balela salad is, it’s very simple to make and calls for few ingredients. Sorry, Trader Joe’s, I’ll be making my own balela salad from now on. Thanks for introducing me to it! I found this recipe at allrecipes.com, which I adapted and halved (I skipped the jalapeno pepper and didn’t use a blender for the dressing). The simplicity of this recipe is what makes it great. It’s a cold salad, so it’s perfect for potlucks because it doesn’t need to be heated. In fact, I’m making this for a potluck meal that I’m attended next weekend. It’s also vegan, so it is friendly to many diet restrictions.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl, stir until well-mixed.

Stuffed Jalapenos and Stuffed Jalepeno Dip

Yesterday I posted about the basil pesto pasta dish that I made with produce from my in-laws’ garden. Thankfully, there’s still plenty of produce where that came from. Tonight, Sam and I used up the jalapeno peppers from his parents’ garden by making stuffed jalapenos and a stuffed jalapeno dip. Unfortunately, we didn’t measure for either recipe, mostly because I’m not a fan of jalapeno peppers. If you make these, you’ll have to do everything to taste (like we did). We had 4 jalapeno peppers on hand, so both recipes were small-scale.

Stuffed Jalapenos

That cheesy stuffed jalapeno at the front of the plate was for me. Sam really wants me to love jalapeno peppers as much as he does, so he made me a less spicy stuffed pepper. I still didn’t like it much.

Stuffed Jalapenos

INGREDIENTS:

  • Whole Jalapeno peppers, cut in half (reserve seeds)
  • Cream cheese
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Cayenne Pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Mix together cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and cayenne pepper (all ingredients to taste).
  2. Spoon mixture into jalapeno pepper halves
  3. Bake at 400 degrees for 10-15 minutes

Jalapeno Pepper Dip

Jalapeno Pepper Dip

INGREDIENTS:

  • Seeds from jalapeno peppers
  • Cream cheese
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Cayenne Pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Mix all ingredients together (cheeses and cayenne pepper to taste).
  2. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes

Basil Pesto with Fresh Tomatoes and Roasted Zucchini

Now that I’m an adult, summertime no longer mean several weeks of unstructured time with no responsibilities. I don’t think I need any more reason to justify why I’m not a big fan of summer now. However, summer does redeem itself by providing me with an abundance of delicious, fresh produce. Sam’s parents have an awesome garden, which means that I am blessed with a continuous supply of fresh basil, tomatoes, zucchini, and jalapeno peppers. This meal consisted of almost entirely fresh produce from my in-laws’ garden. Spaghetti tossed in basil pesto, tomatoes, and roasted zucchini. Basil pesto recipe below.

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
  • 2/3 cups extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • Salt to taste
  • Garlic to taste (about 2 cloves?)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup parmesan cheese

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Add basil, sunflower seeds, and garlic to food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped.
  2. Add oil, blend until smooth.

Cake Balls

A friend’s birthday was yesterday, and my husband’s birthday is tomorrow, so a mutual friend suggest that we make them Cake Balls. I hadn’t heard of Cake Balls, and they’re certainly more labor intensive than a regular cake, but they are delicious. We made two kinds of cake balls: vanilla cake with chocolate icing, dipped in chocolate; and chocolate cake with chocolate icing and peanut butter stirred in, dipped in melted peanut butter chips.

And yes, I know, our friend informed us that Cake Balls have made it into the popular discourse thanks to an interview with Josh Hutcherson and Jennifer Lawrence, of The Hunger Games.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cake mix, flavor of choice
  • 1 container of icing, flavor of choice
  • Chocolate chips for melting (or peanut butter chips, or butterscotch chips)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Bake cake according to directions. Let cool (we popped it in the freezer to speed things up)
  2. Transfer cake to a bowl. Add 3/4 of a container of icing to cake and stir together
  3. Make well-packed balls about the size of aping pong ball
  4. Dip into melted chocolate chips