So if Week one of the Whole30-diet is like a sloth (being slow and tired all the time), then Week two is a blowfish. Right on Monday, my pants felt tight, and I felt huge. It’s the no-way-to-suck-in-your-tummy kind of bloated. I soldiered through, and began a new 8-week workout program and thank God I chose one for busy people which basically means workouts are shorter. I’m not sure whether it was my longer than usual workout break (10 days) or the new diet, my muscles were so freaking sore all week. Fortunately, according to the Whole30 web page, it’s pretty normal to feel bloated around week two and as promised, I’m feeling much better on the weekend already.
I forgot to share grocery photos last week, so here they are. That was on Sunday 8 days ago. I know, there’s a looooot of meat and not nearly enough vegetables. I’m still learning. I had to go to the store in the middle of the week to get more greens. In the beginning, I was worried that needing to buy all the veggies and meat, it would be challenging to stay in my weekly grocery budget but it was surprisingly easy. I even had the money to get steak which I hardly ever can afford without sacrificing on food quality rest of the week. I guess junk food did cost more. I used the chicken thighs and one pack of bacon for work-day breakfasts, and the big chunk of delicious steak for lunches. Some steaks were left from the lunches, so I made stir-fried beef and veggies from them for dinner on most days.
But here is my breakfast meal prep for weekdays to work. I work out in the morning and I know I have to eat after my workout but I usually can’t get anything more than an egg down right after, so I like to bring breakfasts to work. The shower, getting ready and the work commute are just enough to build up my appetite. As said before, I made chicken thighs and bacon for breakfasts. I marinaded the chicken with salt, dried garlic, cashew butter and sesame oil. They turned out delicious. And of course bacon is always bacon, and a nice refreshing spinach and cherry tomatoes salad accompanied by a couple of hard-boiled eggs, that’s a very hearty and protein filled breakfast that would keep me full until lunch time.
And for lunch, some heavy duty meal prep. I cooked some steak, nothing fancy, just salt and pepper and garlic plus thyme as seasoning. I also fried up some sweet potato discs, baked some broccoli in the oven and stir-fried some zucchini. I used very simple seasoning, just salt and pepper and garlic mainly, but these three vegetable have their very distinct flavors, making the lunchboxes taste versatile even without any sauces. Steak is good, however, on Friday, it was getting a little old. I should be more careful this week and make different variations.
So my steaks and veggies stir-fry dinner ran out on Thursday. That was when I finally utilized the minced pork and minced chicken. Into the minced chicken, I added a little bag of Whole30 approved green curry paste and made little patties of them. I prefer my ‘meatballs’ more in the shape of hamburgers because they cook more evenly and they would turn golden brown beautifully and all over evenly when they are not in ball-shaped. They turned out delicious. And with the minced pork, I made some ‘egg corners’, a Cantonese dish that my mom made. Basically, they are just mini omelets with pork fillings. Then just some simple broccolini and mushroom wok.
On Saturday I went on my weekly grocery shopping, and breakfast with my parents to McDonalds. I packed my own breakfast and just bought a large black coffee and watched my parents eating McMuffins and weirdly, I didn’t even want it. And from that I got inspired to write down my cravings and surprising non-cravings and I would check back with you later with them. 😛 Back to the groceries. As learned from last week’s mistake, I doubled my vegetable purchase and was happy with four duck breasts provided by my dad. Can you guess what I’m making this week? 😀
So as a cherry on top for the weekend, I decided to make fish whenever it’s available on the weekends. I don’t like to keep fish, as I don’t like to eat left-over fish. But I spotted the last piece of fresh salmon in my local supermarket so I made a little fish feast for myself on Sunday. My favorite method to cook fish is either pan-fried or steamed, as both of them are easier to monitor the cooking process. I almost never put fish in the oven, cos for me it’s 50/50 whether it comes out too over-cooked, and I hate over-cooked fish. Lean fish I prefer steamed in Chinese style (with leak, ginger and coriander and maybe some salt if it’s a big fish). The secret to steamed fish is when it’s done, you added some cooked soy sauce with some sugar in it and pour it over the fish. Then you heat up some vegetable oil like sunflower oil then pour that all over the fish so it would sizzle beautifully and taste divine! Honestly speaking, I haven’t mastered the exact time of steaming fish of different sizes. So I played it safe with my Sunday feast so I pan-fried the salmon. As soy sauce and sugar can’t be used, I went a little south in Asia and put some Thai impact. I seasoned the cooking oil with chili, garlic and leek and salt and fried the salmon pieces on it. I also squeezed some lime juice on them. The end result was surprisingly tasty, but that might be because the salmon was really fresh. So accompany the fatty fish, I fried up mushroom and king oyster mushrooms, snow peas and lotus root, as all of those are give off a natural umami flavor and together they made a light but delicious side dish for a spicy and fatty salmon.
All in all, a very successful Whole30 week. And they promise that the hardest days should be behind me now, so I can’t wait for this week to get going! Come back next Monday to check how I’m doing when 75% of the diet is done. 🙂 Have a good week, everyone!