Nutrition update, and some healthy (and really tasty) gluten-free recipes!

Betcha can't eat just one!

Betcha can’t eat just one!

I’m not doing so great with this whole “cleanse” thing. Turns out I go crazy when I restrict things when I really don’t need to, especially if I want to keep my fitness (and sanity) up at the level where it’s at now. So it’s kind of just turned into this “only have one small cup of coffee in the morning, have a glass of wine with dinner on the weekend if you feel like it, make proper meals instead of eating cereal out of the box for dinner and drink more green tea during the day” kind of cleanse. And I can live with that. I’m saving the program kit for a time when I really need it and maybe don’t want to workout as much as I am now. But I’m on a roll (and paying for a gym membership), and don’t want to stop! To truly benefit from the Reset you do have to follow it properly, and the meals weren’t enough to sustain me through a long day, even if I ate more of them. I followed it closely for about a week then got sick, so now I’m just trying to recover from that and to get my energy back up to get back in the gym.

Oh, and I also stopped eating gluten altogether, which is a lot easier than I thought it would be. It’s hard to know right now though if it’s making a big difference, as I’ve had some sort of noro virus for the last four days. I’m hoping to eventually wean myself off toast for breakfast (right now I’m eating Udi’s gluten-free bread which is actually really good, but made with high GI potato and modified corn starches, which aren’t so good); I need to find another carby vessel for my morning peanut butter. Suggestions welcome!

I’ve discovered almost all of my favourite grains and carbs sources are gluten-free: brown rice, rice noodles, quinoa, buckwheat (not actually wheat), amaranth, corn, sweet potatoes, etc. Also oatmeal, a runner’s staple breakfast food, does not contain gluten… BUT it is usually processed in facilities where cross contamination is possible. A lot of people with gluten intolerance can’t eat oats either, but if you can eat them, you can buy non-contaminated oats. Hooray!

Pad Thai... it's gluten-free!

Pad Thai… it’s gluten-free!

Avoiding gluten has forced me to cook more, which I am slowly starting to enjoy. A few nights ago I made a chicken, black bean and brown rice burrito wrapped in a teff wrap with salsa and homemade guacamole. Even my boyfriend loved it! Then last night I made a delicious coconut prawn and veggie pad thai… that I couldn’t eat ’cause my tummy hurt 🙁 Hoping to have it for dinner tonight. I also whipped up these skinny peanut butter fudge brownies I found here, but with natural peanut butter and agave nectar. SOOOOOO amazingly good!!! Good thing they’re low cal, ’cause I ate like five pieces right out of the pan.

Recipes

Chicken, black beans and rice burrito with homemade guacamole

Ingredients

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breast (preferably local, organic, hormone-free chicken)
  • 1 cup black beans (can by then dry and cook them, or in a can. I like Eden’s Organic Black Beans.)
  • 1/4 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice (can make as much as you like, I always make a big batch and use it in other stuff)
  • Teff wraps (I like La Tortilla Factory Ivory Teff Wraps, which you can buy at the Market on Millstream!)
  • 2 tsp Mexican chilli powder
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2/3 cup of salsa
  • 1 pinch of ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp of coriander
  • 1 pinch of Himalayan salt
  • Lime wedges
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1/4 cup of cilantro
  • 1/4 of minced onion
  • A bit of fresh ground pepper

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare brown rice as directed on the package (usually takes about 50 minutes to cook, so do this first). While rice is cooking, coat chicken with fresh lime juice, 1 tsp of the Mexican chili powder, some ground pepper and the red pepper flakes. Bake in oven for about 20-30 minutes, or until cooked thoroughly. Once ready, cut the chicken into strips.

Meanwhile, heat the black beans on medium in a pot. Once bubbling, drain the juices from the beans, turn the heat to low and add the olive oil, the other tsp of the chili powder, the cumin, coriander and salt. One rice is done, and about a cup of it to the beans, mix well and tada!

For the guacamole, mash up the avocados in a bowl then add the minced onion, about 2 tsps worth of fresh lime juice, some ground pepper and the cilantro. Mix together.

Put the rice and bean mix in the wrap, then add the chicken and top with salsa and guac!

Coconut prawn and veggie pad thai

The makings of a good dinner!

The makings of a good dinner!

Ingredients

  • Thai Kitchen Original Pad Thai Mix (with the sauce. Yes it’s actually gluten-free!)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cilantro
  • Bag of cooked prawns, defrosted
  • 1 lime
  • 1 cup of bean sprouts
  • 3 cups of whatever veggies you have lying around you want to use up (in this case I used orange pepper, broccoli and carrots)
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • Handful of chopped peanuts
  • 2 cups of bean sprouts
  • Cooking spray, like Pam

Directions: Spray the pan with a canola or veggie oil cooking spray. Add the egg and scramble it up until it’s done, then set it aside. Next, add the veggies to the pan and saute for 3 minutes on a medium heat. Next, add the coconut oil to the pan and let it melt. Add the prawns and saute for another 2 minutes. Meanwhile, prep the rice noodles according to the package (it doesn’t take long to cook them, you pretty much bring water to a boil, turn off the heat and add the rice noodles, letting them soften for about 3-5 minutes). Drain the rice noodles and add to the prawns and veggies, along with the bean sprouts, egg and thai sauce that comes with the package. Saute until the sauce coats the noodles and everything is mixed in. Serve with some cilantro, a lime wedge and top with a sprinkle of peanuts.

P.S. If you’re an endurance athlete who wants a good whole foods (and gluten-free) cookbook, make sure you check out Fueling Endurance Performance… should be coming out soon, the recipes look amazing and I’m excited to try them!