What I Ate Wednesday #1

I’ve read a few “What I Ate Wednesday” posts (or WIAW for you trendy folk) on other health food sites and I couldn’t decide if they were silly or helpful. Once I realized how many meals plans I acquired, recipe ideas I’ve conjured up, and motivation I’ve received, I decided these simple little posts are actually quite positive!

Breakfast was¬†two scrambled eggs with two strips of¬†Maverick Ranch bacon and a portion of my newest recipe:¬†Roasted “Sweet” Apples. Of course, it wouldn’t be breakfast without a¬†Coconut Milk Latte¬†to wash it all down.

Sept 17 BreakfastThe morning could not get started without some play time with the kitten. Storm loves playing hide and seek. Or maybe she is just scared of me… which is totally possible.

Little StormToday I caught up on a bunch of random chores: dishes, laundry, sweeping, you know… the good stuff. I got to spend some time in the Word and have been praying over this lovely piece of Scripture:

1 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge,and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.
— 1 Corinthians 13:1-3

I hope that gives you a bit of encouragement about the incredible importance of¬†love. I’m so thankful for God’s great love. I pray that I may demonstrate and share it with others as best I can. :)

Meanwhile, over in the kitchen, my sister was juicing…
Can you juice this?Or¬†attempting to juice, rather. She told me today that she is going to start her Whole30 journey. Now that I’ve shared this with the public, she has to do it.¬†HA. Committed.¬†Really, I am cheering for you Jacqueline and I hope you stick with it! Proud of this decision!

For lunch, I sat down to take my online course and paired it with this lovely meal. Just a bunch of things I could throw together. Simple! A big helping of¬†Mediterranean Salad¬†(and I went back for more) with some Whole30-approved¬†Turkey Breast slices. I was looking for something sweet and crunchy (I love a good “crunch factor”) and got out some¬†roasted almonds¬†mixed together with¬†bareSnacks’ Organic Crunchy Cinnamon¬†Apple Chips. Dang, those are addictive.

Sept 17 LunchAfter more online coursework, I then headed over to Austin’s place for a tabata-style upper body workout. Which, not to worry, I will be posting later. T’was a pretty good one. I imagine I’ll be sore tomorrow, so I’ll wait and see. This now brings us to dinner…

Sept 17 DinnerRosemary-roasted white mushrooms and saut√©ed green bell pepper + onions were scarfed down along with¬†two Applegate Farms Uncured Turkey Dogs. I know, I know, turkey dogs are not super fancy. I’m out of sausages, okay?!¬†Nonetheless, I am grateful for another delicious Paleo/Whole30 Meal.

Also, today is Day 14. YES.

Whole30 Day 14

He UNDERSTANDS me.

Now I am off to band rehearsal for our church’s worship team. And to stay committed to this whole WIAW post, I will have you know I will have a snack later. I’m not sure what, but it will happen– Looks like this is ending as a mystery. Have a great evening! I will be singing the night away… Happy Wednesday! :)

Sweet Potatoes + Apples

Roasted “Sweet” Apples

Do you know what I mean by the smell of fall?
That’s¬†exactly what this dish smells like.

It gives you that warm & cozy feeling while it roasts away in the oven. For us Floridians, we need these types of dishes to imagine Autumn’s approach when it is truly 92-degrees and 84% humidity. Now that my mouth is watering and I have my Pumpkin Spiced Latte black coffee in hand (thanks Whole30), let’s get to it.

Roasted Goodness

Roasted “Sweet” Apples* (serves 1)
Ingredients:
– 1 small sweet potato
– 1 medium gala apple
– 1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
– 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

Sweet Potatoes + Apples

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 450-degrees.
2. Dice apple and sweet potato and place in mixing bowl.
3. Add in coconut oil & cinnamon; toss together until produce is evenly covered.
4. Place on baking sheet and roast for 12-14 minutes.

Perfect Breakfast Addition

I am particularly excited about this recipe because I am always trying to find ways to spice up my breakfast routine–¬†Today I’ll¬†have an omelet with veggies… and for tomorrow, oh! How about an omelet with veggies?¬†I immediately went into¬†fall mode when savoring the aroma of this side dish. It is perfect for breakfast, but I can definitely see this being a quick dessert if you add some¬†coconut milk whipped cream to it! Possibly even a side dish to a dinner with pork as the main event? Just think of the options!¬†Roasty Toasty

I hope you find it heart-warmingly delicious too!


*Shout out to my lovely sister Jacqueline for the name of this recipe. Also, you can easily double or triple the recipe for friends and family too! WIN.

Mediterranean Magic

Mediterranean Salad

Diane Sanfilippo, author of¬†Practical Paleo and¬†21 Day Sugar Detox, posted this photo of¬†Whole Foods’ Cucumber & Tomato Salad that was drenched in canola oil. A sad day for those poor vegetables.

Or "Canola Oil Catastrophe". Whichever you prefer.

Or “Canola Oil Catastrophe”…¬†Up to you.

The beautiful side to this? INSTANT INSPIRATION.
Introducing… My Paleo & Whole30 Approved¬†Mediterranean Salad.

Mediterranean Salad

Mediterranean Salad (serves 2-4: depending on the hunger level)
Ingredients:
– 1 medium tomato
– 1 cucumber
– 1 green bell pepper
– 1/2 red onion
– 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
– 1 tsp basil
– 1 tsp parsley
– 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
– 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
– Juice & Zest of 1 lemon

Chopped Veggies

Directions:
1. Chop tomato, cucumber, pepper, and onion into equally proportionate sizes; place in mixing bowl.
2. Add lemon zest; follow with the lemon juice. [HINT: Roll your lemon under your palm before cutting & squeezing juice. This makes the process of squeezing the juice out much easier.]
3. Add all herbs/spices & olive oil. If you can get fresh herbs, that would be a great upgrade too!
4. Gently toss together.¬†I like using my hands, but use tongs if you’d rather not get that into your food. ;)
5. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours, but best when left overnight. Serve chilled.
Lemon Zest

I also enjoyed this salad over a fresh bed of kale and alone. If you have any leftover grilled chicken, that would be a great addition to pump up the protein factor and turn this into a “meal-sized salad”. YUM!

Enjoy :)

EPIC Bars

EPIC [Turkey] Bar Review

This is gonna be EPIC!! A choice saying of mine.
So as you can imagine… with a food bar titled “EPIC”, I am all about it.

EPIC Bar is a protein-packed, Paleo, gluten-/dairy-/soy-free, and grass-fed bar created by Taylor Collins & Katie Forrest. Here is a snip-it of their story as described on their site:

Due to an ingredient label unlike anything else, EPIC epitomizes REAL food. Based on our deep-rooted evolutionary biology, EPIC specializes in creating nutrient-dense animal based protein products for people on the go. EPIC foods will always be humane, pasture centered, and most importantly, delicious. May you fill your life with epic adventure and epic health!

Sounds pretty epic if you ask me. Therefore I had to make my way on over to the nearest¬†Whole Foods and check them out! Currently, these bars are on sale at Whole Foods for $2.29, although I didn’t catch the regular price (my apologizes). To start it out slow, I went for the¬†turkey and¬†beef varieties. Bison and lamb are a little risky for me, but I’m willing to test it out eventually.¬†All I can picture is a silly cuddly lamb! Ah!EPIC Bars

Likes:
Ingredients: All of the EPIC Bar animals are vegetarian-fed, humanely treated, antibiotic-free & hormone-free. They are gluten-free, Paleo-friendly, and just an all-around awesome whole food experience.
–¬†Convenience: It’s not always the easiest task to cart around beef, lamb, bison, or turkey, unless it’s in jerky form. This creates a great healthy alternative when you don’t have access to refrigeration for your grilled chicken breast snack. Plus, if you pair it with some fresh veggies and a fat source (almonds, anyone?), you can turn it into an emergency meal when you are hungry and need to buy groceries (which is exactly what I did).
–¬†Philosophy: Plain and simple, I like what EPIC is about. Their take on health and importance of food (and food quality) is very well portrayed in their story, on the site, and even on the bar packaging. It makes you feel like you’re joining a movement¬†toward better health simply by partaking in their product. It’s pretty impressive when a company can do that.

EPIC TurkeyDislikes:
–¬†Taste:¬†WARNING: Do not write off this product now, please hear me out first. One, I only tried the¬†Turkey bar so that’s what I’m reviewing for this post. Two, I am not a fan of beef jerky. Not even a little bit. Which then makes people (okay, my sister) wonder why I made such a purchase due to it being a similar product. Easy, I wanted to give it a shot. And I¬†will give it another shot¬†with the¬†Beef variety that is in my pantry. As for the turkey bar, I ate 3 bites and then gave the rest to my sister, who enjoyed it. So… it might just be me. If you¬†are a fan of beef-jerky-like things, you will more than likely really enjoy this product. :)


This won’t be my last time trying¬†EPIC¬†Bars. All the things I really like about the company make me want to keep trying the product. I’m definitely interested in the other varieties.

Have you tried EPIC Bars? What is your favorite flavor?