Whole 30: Day 21

So today I uttered the phrase: “So, this diet is totally a pain in the ass, but I’ve got to admit I feel really, really good.”  And it’s true. It’s a huge pain, because it turns out, pretty much everything has sugar in it, so if you want something, you have to make it. It does make me wonder, though, is this an American thing? Is it like this everywhere? I tend to think it must be. I just read something about how there’s a sugar shortage in Egypt and people are flipping out because sugar is in, like, everything they make. And now it’s going for some insane price on the black market. Anyway, it is interesting to be forced to notice everything that’s got sugar, and cream, and butter, etc. It’s an amazing industry.

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Today started out with this fatly stuffed omelet. Stuffed with an entire head of kale, Piggery ham slices (!!), scallions, and the last Piggery sausage. I browned the sausage and sautéed the greens before making the omelet, and I stirred a spoonful of coconut yogurt into the eggs before pouring them into the skillet. Delicious.

For lunch I created a Whole 30 style club salad. I wanted to finish off the ham before it went bad, so I chopped that up, threw some arugula into a bowl with the ham slices, cherry tomatoes, avocados, a few almonds, and two poached eggs. I sprinkled on some salt and pepper but otherwise opted to break the yolks and mix that up into the salad for dressing. Side note: this would also be glorious with bacon.

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For dinner I had some amazing wild white shrimp, so I thought I’d whip ’em up in a nice stir fry. I also had some gorgeous looking tatsoi, so I threw that in, too. Here’s my full recipe below:

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Shrimp and Tatsoi Stir Fry:

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • 2 tbls. fresh shredded ginger
  • 2 tbls. minced garlic
  • 1 head tatsoi,both stem and greens chopped
  • 2 tbls. coconut aminos
  • 1 tbls. sesame oil
  • 2 tsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. monkfruit extract (optional)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. guar gum or arrowroot powder
  • 1/4 cup chopped scallions plus more to garnish
  • sesame or coconut oil or ghee for cooking

Preparation:

  1. Combine coconut aminos, sesame oil, rice wine, monkfruit extract (if using) and guar gum in a small bowl and mix well; set aside.
  2. Put a wok over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the sesame or coconut oil, swirl it around and immediately add garlic and ginger. Cook for 15 seconds, stirring, then add scallion and tatsoi. Raise heat to high and cook, stirring occasionally, until greens just soften, about 2 to 3 minutes; transfer everything to a plate and set aside.
  3. Turn the heat down to medium, add another tablespoon of oil, let it get hot, add shrimp and sprinkle with salt and pepper; raise heat to high, continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until shrimp turn pink and are no longer translucent, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Turn heat down to medium, return greens to pan, and toss once or twice. Stir sauce to make sure guar gum is well blended and add to pan. Cook until everything is warmed through and sauce thickens. Garnish with chopped scallions and serve.

Three Cup Chicken with Shishito Peppers

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This is maybe my favorite stir fry I’ve ever had. It has Taiwanese roots…but apparently there are many different opinions about what makes this dish authentic. In any case, I really don’t think you can go wrong no matter what — good eats is good eats. Here’s my version.

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 2-to-3-inch piece of ginger, peeled and sliced into coins, approximately 12
  • 12 cloves of garlic (or more to taste), peeled
  • 4 whole scallions, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • a bunch of shishito peppers
  • 2 pounds chicken thighs, boneless or bone-in, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 tablespoon unrefined or light brown sugar
  • ½ cup rice wine
  • ¼ cup light soy sauce
  • 2 cups purple basil or thai basil

Preparation:

  1. Heat a wok over high heat and add 2 tablespoons sesame oil. When the oil shimmers, add the ginger, garlic, scallions and peppers, and cook until fragrant, approximately 2 minutes.
  2. Scrape the aromatics to the sides of the wok, add remaining oil and allow to heat through. Add the chicken, and cook, stirring occasionally, until it is browned and crisping at the edges, approximately 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. Add sugar and stir to combine, then add the rice wine and soy sauce, and bring just to a boil. Lower the heat, then simmer until the sauce has reduced and started to thicken, approximately 15 minutes.
  4. Turn off the heat, add the basil and stir to combine.

Stir Fried Turnips with Turnip Greens,Spring Onions and Tofu

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So, I mentioned that I hadn’t stuck completely raw this past week; here is something delicious that I made. It was quick, easy, healthy and utilized the entire veggie, which I really like. Also the turnip made the dish; the crunchy sweetness really changed it up and made the dish surprising and lovely.

This recipe comes from the NY Times Cooking Section! Get the original here.

Ingredients:

  • 10 ounces firm tofu , drained and cut in chunks
  • 1 bunch baby turnips, with greens (about 1 pound total)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons soy sauce (to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese cooking sherry (Shaoxing rice wine) or dry sherry
  • ¼ cup chicken stock, vegetable stock or water
  • 1 teaspoon honey or agave nectar
  • 2 tablespoons peanut, canola, rice bran, sunflower or grape seed oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1 bunch spring onions or 2 to 3 bunches scallions, sliced, white and light green parts only, sliced (about 1 1/4 cups)
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped cilantro
  • 1 bunch chopped brassica flowers (optional…I just had them from my csa share)
  • 1 tbls. sriracha (optional but highly recommended)

Preparation:

  1. Drain and dry tofu slices on paper towels. In a small bowl or measuring cup combine soy sauce, rice wine or sherry, stock or water, and honey or agave nectar. Have all ingredients within arm’s length of your wok.
  2. Cut away greens from baby turnips. Scrub turnips and if very small, cut in half; if larger than a Ping-Pong ball, quarter. Stem greens, wash leaves in 2 changes of water and chop coarsely. Set aside near your wok.
  3. Heat a 14-inch flat-bottomed wok over high heat until a drop of water evaporates within a second or two when added to the pan. Swirl in 1 tablespoon of the oil by adding it to the sides of the pan and swirling the pan, then add tofu and stir-fry until lightly colored, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove to a plate.
  4. Swirl in remaining oil, add garlic and ginger and stir-fry for no more than 10 seconds. Add onions and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add turnips and stir-fry for another minute or 2, then add salt and pepper, toss together and add soy sauce mixture. Add greens and stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes, until vegetables are crisp-tender.
  5. Return tofu to the wok along with the cilantro and brassica flowers. Stir-fry for 1 minute and remove from heat. Add sriracha and mix. Serve with hot grains or noodles.

Such an interesting and unusual way to use turnips, and they taste terrific in this.

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