"...what a person accomplishes in life is directly correlated with the people around them." - John Berardi

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Chicken Tikka Masala + Cauli Rice + Gluten-free Naan

Finished my 2nd Whole30 yesterday! Woot! I feel great and am so glad I did it! I'm down a few pounds, lost about 3 inches, and down 1.5% body fat! I think that's pretty great since I was already trying to eat a lot of good whole foods before doing this Whole30 and my exercising hasn't been much more than volleyball games on Monday nights, walks most days and a day or two of 15 minute body-weight/kettlebell training. Goes to show that most of us can benefit from a Whole30 in some way (or many ways)!

I'm going to try to follow the Hartwig's advice (Whole30 creators) better this time with "worth it" treats/indulgences. I'm someone who is a planner and so I tend to "plan" when I'll eat my treats too, which they suggest not doing. The idea, is that if you plan a time/day to eat a treat, you may not actually want it when you get to that point but will usually eat it because you planned on having it. I'm hoping to develop a better relationship and maturity with having an indulgence when it sounds good and is really worth it. Along with this effort, getting better at stopping when I've had enough to be satisfied, instead of eating until it's gone. I imagine I'm not the only person who does that... :)

Alright, on to business.... I mentioned last week that I was going to start my reintroduction phase with dairy. Some foods I won't bring back intentionally, since I already know that grains make me feel like garbage and I see no need, benefit, or desire to have soy in my diet :) I did have some wonderful grass-fed cheesy scrambled eggs for breakfast and enjoyed this FANTASTIC Chicken Tikka Masala for dinner on top of cauliflower rice (skipping the starch and sneaking in more veggies, nice, eh?) with some 3 ingredient Naan, smothered in grass-fed butter. Yum. Yum and YUM!  The flavors were simply magical! It's definitely going to be added to our favorites list!

I will tell you, if you're looking for a quick & easy dinner idea... this is NOT for one of those nights :) It requires quite a few ingredients (my neighbor saved the day on a spice that didn't make it on my grocery list... ooops!) and is made in a couple different parts, so it takes a little more time to make. But trust me, it's absolutely worth it! I hope you enjoy this even a quarter as much as I did!

Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken Ingredients
1 1/2 lbs boneless/skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into bite size pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
1 tablespoon finely chopped or grated fresh ginger
Small pinch cayenne pepper (or more, for a spicier dish)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon ground black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Combine all the ingredients in a medium baking dish.
3. Cover with tinfoil and bake for 1 hour

Sauce Ingredients
1/4 cup olive oil
1 small onion, sliced thinly
6-ounces tomato paste
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon garam masala (an Indian spice blend)
1/4 teaspoon turmeric

1. In a large, deep pan over medium heat sauté the onions in the olive oil until golden brown, about ten minutes.
2. Add the remaining ingredients, mix well, and let simmer 20 minutes, stirring often.
3. When the chicken has finished baking, add it to the sauce on the stovetop. Simmer for 20 minutes.
4. Serve in bowl alone or over cauliflower rice

* Makes 4 servings

Cauliflower Rice

1 head of cauliflower
2 tablespoons coconut oil
Salt & pepper to taste

1. Wash cauliflower and remove main stem and leaves
2. Grate into "rice" with a cheese grater or food processor
3. Melt coconut oil in a frying pan
4. Add cauliflower to oil & cook until soft (about 5 min)
5. Add salt and pepper to taste

* Makes approximately 6 servings

Gluten-free Naan

Alright... mine has 5 ingredients :)

½ cup almond flour
½ cup tapioca flour
1 cup full-fat coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
Grassfed Butter or Organic Ghee

1. Mix all the ingredients together.
2. Heat a non-stick pan (or use 1 tsp coconut oil for each piece of naan) over medium heat and pour 1/2 the batter into the pan.
3. Once the batter fluffs up and looks firm/mostly cooked, flip it over to cook the other side (it takes a while so be patient).
4. Cook the other half of the batter like in step 3
5. Enjoy this crispy, yet soft goodness with dinner or as a dessert (e.g. with apple butter)

There you have it! Three recipes in one post! Boo yeah!

How's your food & symptom tracking going so far this week? Another enlightening thing about this exercise for me, is realizing just how much I overeat some days with habitual snacking and eating just to eat.