Hello everyone! How has your week been? I have to say I've had a very busy week, and as a result I've been quite stressed too! I don't tend to get stressed that often, but when I do, I don't think I deal with it very well and I can get a bit moody: I think hormones were playing their part this week too, and I have the spots to prove it!
Being so busy meant that a few days this week I was caught out without anything to eat for lunch. So what did I do? Go to the greasy spoon with all the boys? Pop into a sandwich shop? Nope, I opted for a shop bought soup! It might not be ideal due to the salt and the flour (is there no such thing as gluten free soup?!), but when you are busy and stressed, it doesn't mean all healthy eating has to go out of the window, it just means that I have to make the best choices I can. I opted for a tomato and coconut milk based soup, with chicken to make sure I had plenty of protein. It really was a yummy soup!
One one of the evenings I made my go to turkey mince and veg scramble, with a bit of sauerkraut on the side. I had thought of mixing it in as it cooked but I wasn't sure, but I think I'll do that next tine!
Most mornings I have been mixing half a teaspoon of barley grass powder with some almond milk. I am yet to write a post about the benefits of barley grass and why I'm taking it, but I will soon, it is on my list!
I've had quite a lot of Mango's this week, I managed to get two for about 80p in Aldi, and I have to say they are my favoruite fruit, there's nothing that feels more special to me than chopping up a whole mango and eating it all! Here I had some with full fat Total, passion fruit and dessicated coconut. I've been eating quite a few more tropical flavours at the moment, desperate for summer to arrive maybe?
This is becoming one of my favourite quick dinners. King prawns, lots of garlic, spinach, tomato paste on a bed of courgettes, topped with Parmesan. Parmesan is just great, you get so much flavour from a small amount, which means the calories don't add up too fast!
Friday nights are all about having something nice to look forward to eat after CrossFit: starting the weekend in the best possible way. This week I had taken venison steaks out of the freezer which I had bought reduced at Waitrose a few weeks ago. What I didn't realise was how unbelievably small they were! We decided to cut both in half so that we had a fair share. Despite the size, they were great, very tender, I'll have to get a proper portion for us next time. We also had fried red onions and cabbage, and to bulk out the meal I added organic local mild cheese to the mash, which was absolutely divine, I've not had cheesey mash in years!
I had a little friend hoping to nab a piece of my steak: sorry Jac, it was small enough as it was!
The next morning we stayed in bed watching The Killing, so by the time we got up it was quite late, and I was starving. I had promised to make Iestyn pancakes for breakfast, but I was just too hungry and couldn't wait! So for breakfast I had a bowl of full fat Total yogurt, chia seeds, persimmon, pear, fig and flaked almonds.
And of course coconut oil blended coffee for two! For any of you wondering how much to use, I used about 8g for us two.
Next it was pancake time! I hadn't made pancakes using coconut flour in ages, and they are my favourite, but are quite time consuming, so I knew they would be ready just in time for lunch! As I had some greek yogurt, I though it would be great experimenting with adding it to my usual recipe, and of course for a little extra protein.
Greek Yogurt and Coconut Flour Pancakes
Makes 6 pancakes
60g coconut flour
4 large free range eggs
200ml milk of your choice (I used a mix of almond milk and semi skimmed as I ran out of almond milk!)
150g full fat greek yogurt (I used Total)
2 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
Sieve the flour and bicarb into the milk and egg mixture and mix well. Yet again give it a thorough mix, you don't need to worry about over mixing so much with coconut flour. Leave the mixture to stand for a few minutes to thicken. Melt a little coconut oil in a pan, and then turn on to the lowest heat possible, and ladle the mixture into the frying pan. You need to cook these slowly on low, they take quite a few minutes, you just have to be patient. Once you see a lot of bubbles form on the top, and that they have firmed up a bit, flip and leave for another few minutes, until cooked through. Due to having quite a long cooking time these do brown quite a bit, but as long as you keep the heat very low, they shouldn't burn! My mixture made 6, it's up to you how many you have!
Seeing as it was lunch time, I decided that savoury pancakes were the way forward, so I topped mine with a duck egg, spinach a little organic cheese and half a small avocado. Delicious!
The afternoon was spent watching the obligatory rugby, and then we went to Bangor to stock up on almond milk, and did a bit of food shopping in Asda.
For dinner I wanted to use this little packet of spice mix. I'd bought it for something like 20p in Asda as it was reduced, and it sounded really good, with no added sugars, salt or flours, just a spice mix. I know this is easily done yourself, but I tend to just throw whatever spices I have in a curry, which I suspect means that the ratios of different spices aren't at their optimum, and that every curry I make tastes the same. This one was made using coconut milk and chopped tomato's, as well as plenty of fresh coriander. It suggested coconut rice to serve, so I mixed some dessicated coconut into some cauliflower rice, but afterwards I realised that toasting the coconut would of taken it to the next level!
There has been lots of cauliflower rice about this week, with both Laura and Jemma blogging about it, check out their posts for more ideas. I'm really glad that I tried cauliflower rice and cauliflower mash when I went paleo, it really is such a useful vegetable. Can you believe that I've only liked cauliflower for about a year, but I now I eat it every other week! I wouldn't say it is exactly like rice, so I don't want you to be fooled, it's still cauliflower you're eating! If you just want something to place your curry on, it is great, curry's are generally full of flavour anyway, so I think something plain like cauliflower complements a curry well, as well as taking away some of the spicyness for any spice wimps like me! I think making egg fried rice like Jemma has done is my favourite way of using cauliflower rice though, one of my favourite paleo meals!
Saturday evening we watched a lot more of The Killing on Netflix- when we watch something we tend to get a bit obsessed! While we watched we ate this gorgeous bar of chocolate, with maple syrup and caramelised walnut pieces: how good does that sound? It really was divine. I have to say, I have eaten a lot of chocolate this week. As in every day. I've still been logging my food, but I think having 100-200 calories 'spent' on chocolate every day means that I'm probably not getting the optimum nutrition.
I already blogged as part of my WIAW that I ate this bar on Monday.
Then on Wednesday I must of been looking quite miserable as Iestyn out of the blue offered to go to the shop to get chocolate, which isn't something we generally do! He came back with my favourite, Ferrero Rocher, of which I had two, as well as two squares of Chocolate orange Lindt.
On Thursday we shared the above Mint Chocolate: it was really crisp, loved it.
And Friday was more of the Lindt Orange: so yes, a lot of chocolate. Like I've already mentioned, I've had a pretty hard week, and if a little chocolate made it a little more bearable, then I wasn't going to stress about it. But now the week is over, I need to at least get through a few days without chocolate I think!
On Sunday we were up relatively early as Iestyn was off to meet friends to go climbing, and he had requested a nice breakfast beforehand! Plus I wanted to give my Mam her present and card :) I really wanted to poach the duck eggs I'd bought the week before, and fancied them on some toast, so I bough a wholegrain bloomer.
I've not had bread in the longest time, and I can't say I'm that bothered about it now, it didn't actually taste that great to me, and I still have the rest of the loaf left- I've just remembered that I need to stick it n the freezer!
After waiting a couple of hours for my breakfast to settle, it was run time. In fact it was my second run of the week! I went on Tuesday and did Week 3 of the C25K plan, and I decided that I was ready to move on to Week 4. You know how 've been saying that this time round I'm finding it relatively easy? Well I think that this is the week that stops, running five minute intervals is hard! But at least I survived, and I'm sure it was much harder last time I tried, so I am definitely fitter! Only problem is, I didn't realise that the walking intervals were wrong, I must of made them a bit longer last time I tried it, so I'm going to try it again this week with the shorter intervals: they were only a minute too long! This was the first week I've managed to get two runs in, I think I'm starting to get a bit bored of the gym, so it is time to mix things up, and running and Crossfit is what excites and challenges me at the moment!
I would say that it was probably the coldest run I've ever been on. By the time I finished my running intervals I was warming up, but as soon as I started walking I immediately cooled down: it was Arctic! When I came home I sat hugging a mug of tea for awhile! Then I made up a bowl of chopped apple, full fat greek yogurt, passion fruit, flaked almonds and chia seeds.
I spent the rest of the day sorting my room out, ironing, I dyed my hair a slightly darker shade of brown, and then I headed of to Iestyn's house to watch some more rugby (as much as I like rugby, I can't wait to have my weekends free again!), spend time with his nephews and ate some dinner. All in all a very busy day.
So here's this weeks weigh in results. I was honestly hoping for more, but I suppose after all that chocolate I probably don't deserve it! However I am starting to get angry at those last two pounds now, I feel like I've been at this point awhile: I'm going to do my best to get my head down so that they disappear by the end of the month. I'm headed to Leeds this weekend to see my lovely Uni friends, and it will most probably involve an all day drinking session to celebrate St Patrick's day, so all I can do is try my best, I shall report back next week!
So that's my week, I hope you had a great one!
How do you deal with stress?
Have yo tried any new chocolate bars recently? I have to say I was impressed by the Tesco Finest bars, as I have been of their soup this week!