Saturday, July 30, 2011

Fluffy Food

I made Pancakes this morning!  Don't worry I did not give up on my 6 week cleanse, I simply used Gluten Free Flour and fake sugar substitute and yes almond milk instead of normal cow milk. They turned out good, but they tasted nothing like a pancake.  They tasted more like Snickerdoodle Cookies.  Not a bad thing.  I ate 2 about 2 hours ago and I am still stuffed.  It was nice to eat something bready, but I kinda felt sick after.  So maybe one would be better.  I just spread a bit of butter on them and ate them with my hands, cause it seemed better that way.  I suppose you could put fruit on top, but I opted to leave them plain, since I have had a-lot of fruit lately.

On a side note, I think I am feeling better though I am so tired from the lack of caffeine that it is hard to say I feel great.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

today's news

I woke up to discover that I had lost 7 pounds somewhere, don't care if I ever find it again. :)  Not much else to share other than I tried the Quinoa Pasta with some pesto, and some pan-fried Polenta for dinner.  It was alright.  Nothing worth writing about.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

What to do, what to do

I got brave and tried the Alter Eco Quinoa the other day.  In fact, I have now had it twice.  It is pretty bland by itself, though it smells like corn, but with a slightly nutty flavor, so I added some much needed salt and veggies.  The end result was a dish resembling fried rice. 

I like the fact that by purchasing the stuff I am helping support small family farms in Bolivia...but, then again according to this article in the New York Times, it seems that by helping Bolivian farmers export the crop it made it too expensive for the locals, and thus the rate of malnutrition in these areas is on the rise.  What to do, what to do.  Seems it is a no win situation, as the increase in jobs has been a huge blessing in these communities allowing people to stay in Bolivia instead of head to another neighboring country to find work.

On an entirely different note...

  I started out yesterday with a healthy and beautiful breakfast, a bowl of fresh fruit.  I even made a bowl for my mom and sister.  Would have made it for the guys too, but they went camping for the weekend.

I think the combination of all these new grains, beans and fruits has done a number on my stomach.  I have been in a world of pain the last two days.  So much so that I decided  on drastic measures of drinking Herbal Smooth Move Tea, just to see if it would help.  I have had 2 cups in the last 48 hours, it is not helping.  (I realize not everyone in the world wants to know that, but this is also serving as my medical journal...and if you are going through this process with me you should know what you are getting into)

little addition

After sampling my homemade fro-yo I decided it was missing something, so I added some of the almond milk I had purchased along with a bit more vanilla and brown sugar.  It is better now.  But here is a pic from the first time...

Friday, July 22, 2011

yummy good time

Last night I went out with my good friend for a much needed catch up session.  She let me pick the place to eat since I am the one with all the "issues" when it comes to food these days.  Such a nice friend.  I selected Hula's Bar and Grill in Down Town Santa Cruz. I settled on Hula's because they had a lot of fresh fish options.  I opted for the Macadamia Nut Encrusted Ahi with a Mango Papaya sauce with Black Beans and Plantains as my sides.  It was a delightful dinner out, and full of flavor!

After dinner we headed to Starbucks where I was very good and only had Peppermint Tea.  (no Caffeine)  The night was full of both flavor and friendship, two of my favorite things.  I ended my night at home where I sampled some of the Frozen Yogurt I had made earlier before heading out.  It was not quite frozen yet, but it was tasty.  I think it will be better today. 

I had never attempted to make Frozen Yogurt at home, so I Googled  it like I do just about everything...found what I considered to be the simplest approach  on e how.  I read what they did, decided I was sick of strawberries for the day and so this is what I did...

I took:
2 cups of Plain Organic Yogurt and tossed it into the new pretty blender along with 1 cup of tap water.
I ransacked the cupboards and grabbed the Vanilla Flavoring, Imitation Rum Flavoring, a bit of Brown Sugar, and the Coconut flakes.  I tossed a little bit of each of those into the blender after toasting the Coconut Flakes first in the convention oven.  I just kept adding till it tasted nice and Summery and Refreshing.  Of course I blended along the way on the Milkshake setting.  After it tasted right I added a few ice cubes, cause the person on e-how had suggested it.  Then I poured it all in a plastic container and placed it in the freezer.  Now the e-how guy ( I assumed it was a guy for some reason) said you could enjoy it right out of the blender, but mine was the consistency of milk, so he obviously got a different end product than I did with his frozen strawberries.  However I was enjoying the flavor by 10:30pm that night  and I am thinking it will be even more amazing today.

So go have fun invent your own way of doing it, I only chose e-how's because the picture at the top looked good (though I knew that was machine made) and because it did not require me to come back and stir ever 30 min.  I am lazy like that.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

shopping day

After feeling sorry for myself yesterday, but having determined to make the best out of what I have to work with I set out on a shopping expedition.  As mentioned I had already bought fruits and veggies, so that left all the new stuff; spelt, quinoa,(Turns out the spelt and quinoa are from Bolivia, which is funny since so is my man.), gluten free flour, polenta and brown rice (the last two not totally new).   Then there was the meat, I found some Italian sausage made from chicken and some turkey links as well as turkey franks and some ground turkey. I also got Almond Milk and Rice Milk, plain organic yogurt, some beans, and I even found some gluten free brown rice lime flavored chips which I am munching on as I type. Not bad. (crap, just read they contain milk...)

So seeing as I now have some stuff to work with I will have to be spending some time searching for new and tasty recipes that fit the bill.  Should you have a favorite feel free to post away.  I want to be brave and try some fish dishes as well, so if you have a must try don't hold back. 

Also I should say that since this is a record of sorts I went on a 3 mileish walk this morning with a good friend, who was helping me think up things to do with these random foods.  Thank God for good friends, even when there is a lack of good food ;)

just a dash

I made my smoothie once again this morning, but this time I added a dash of salt.  It was a nice addition, bringing out even more of the flavor.  Just thought I would pass along the tip.  I also did this last night for the sorbet.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

mixin' it up

I am not normally a breakfast person.  I love breakfast foods, but when I wake up all I want is a cappuccino, and if that is not readily available than some other coffee caffeinated drink will suffice.  But thanks to this new way of life I cannot indulge in my love of caffeine, and while this might be good for my pocket book it is a sad start to my day.

So, to brighten things up and try to make the best out of this I decided to go out and purchase a cute blender.  (Actually, I went out to get a blender, but the cute one was on sale at Target.)

After buying this lovely new toy for the kitchen, I went to the Farmer's Market and New Leaf and Nob Hill and loaded up on fruits on the Good To Eat list, (no citrus, or apples permitted) and since I cannot have much in the way of dairy I bought all natural no sugar added fruit juices as well.  Then last night I was proactive and poured the juice into ice cube trays, and pre-cut the strawberries and bananas and froze them all overnight.  When I got up this morning instead of grinding coffee beans and making a morning cup of joe I mixed up a Mango Peach Strawberry Banana smoothie.

Tonight I made the same type of smoothie, but with a pinch of salt, to brighten the flavors a bit and then poured it into a Tupperware container and placed it in the freezer so that I could have a cool all natural no sugar no dairy type sorbet tonight. 

makin' somethin' from nothin'

Before I get a million comments about people surviving happily on less than what I have, let me just say..."I KNOW"  I get that.  I have gone to third world countries and I am friends with people who do much with little, and I admire them for it.  This is just a new thing for me, so understand where I am coming from and know that I know I am blessed.

That said.  Tonight after coming home from the Chiropractor list in hand I was overwhelmed and underwhelmed all at once.  Which sad to say left me in tears.  I was overwhelmed with the number of things I have lost or given up in the last 2 months and underwhelmed with my options for dinner, and every other meal coming in the next 6 weeks.

You see I recently resigned my job, left my boyfriend in Italy (not that we are not together we are just not together), gave up my apartment there and most of my stuff, and am living at my parents home on the couch waiting for my sister to get married, so that I can go back to Italy, be with my boyfriend and all my other friends there, pick up life, and find a new place to live.  On top of all that today I was left in pain and with the lame, list of foods I was limited to.  And thus I was a puddle of despair.

Grilled Chicken and Fruit Salad
But one cannot live like that, so I picked myself up and decided that I would try to make somethin' out of the nothin'.  So tonight's dinner was a mixed green salad topped with fresh nectarines, strawberries, raspberries, and grilled chicken, sprinkled with sunflower seeds and then finished off with a dressing made of pineapple, papaya juice, olive oil and salt.

I have to say it was not bad.  And thus gave me a small bit of hope for the remainder of my 6 weeks of elimination.

Art of Embrace

A week ago or so I was informed that it is likely I have Fibromyalgia.  Bummer.  No matter how much I don't love this (a lot)  it does explain the severe pain residing in my body.  Apparently Fibromyalgia is not the easiest of things to diagnose nor is there a cure, but my Chiropractor suggested I try the "cheapest simplest" treatment first.  I put that in quotes because my friend Nicole and I always used to say, "nothing cheap and easy is good for you."  Yet, here I am faced with trying just that.  And let me tell you, I find it neither cheap nor easy so I guess it might just work.

Here's the plan...Drastically change my diet for 6 weeks along with moderate exercise.  (sounds simple enough)  I tend to walk a lot anyway, at least I did when I was living in Rome, so that part is not so hard.  But here is the kicker, the diet of elimination.  At first he just said eliminate everything white.  That sucked, but was not the end of the world...No flour, sugar, dairy.  It was a change but not impossible.  But that was just cause he did not have the actual elimination diet  paperwork handy.  Not the case today...


  • Simple grains such as: Splet (I have no idea what that is), Quinoa (again, not a clue), Polenta, and Brown Rice
  • Olive Oil, Flax Seed and Fish Oil
  • Cooked Veggies (but not all of them)
  • Pineapple, Mango, Banana (other fruits)
  • Plain Organic Yogurt with Acidophilus
  • Butter
  • Rice milk
  • Eggs
  • Chicken, Turkey, Fish
  • Walnuts, Pecans, Pine nuts, and Almonds
  • Pau da Arco Tea (no clue) herbal teas
  • Beans any kind cooked.

That's it.  That is all I can eat for 6 weeks.

I could list out all the things I cannot eat, but basically if it is not on the list above, well, you get the point.

Now if you know me, you know I am a foodie.  I love food.  I love to try new foods, I love flavors and variety.  I love everything this is not.  But I also am sick of being sick, and I would rather be healthy than in pain.  I am not a fan of doctors (not them as people, just all the ones who have never fixed me) so this seems like a better route than cortisone shots and anti-seizure meds.  And lets be honest when you read the list of side effects on the Fibromyalgia drugs of choice I would rather just suffer as is.

This diet is not that different than the first cycle of the 17 Day Diet  which in fact I had started back in May because my mom and sister were swearing by it.  I also Ended it back in May when I having just returned from 9 months in Rome really wanted to enjoy American Dining and found it to be way too boring to stick with.  Funny how life works out, because now instead of having to do this for 17 days I get to do it for 6 weeks.  Oh joy.

But, like I said I love food, and I love writing and I am supposed to keep a journal of this process anyway, so I thought I might as well blog it.  Like I do with just about everything in my life.