Lil Miss Fitness Freak

"And though she be but little, she is fierce"


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3000 Calories and On a Cut…BF Eats Edition

My friends!

I have wanted to do this post for a while because I get a lot of questions about how my boyfriend is loosing weight and continuing to eat ice cream and copious bowls of cereal. I figured I would show you instead of explaining it, but lets get the simplest explanation out of the way first..

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You will loose weight if you’re in a caloric deficit (unless there is some hormonal or physical barrier, which actually is in only like 2% or less of people..). WITH THAT SAID… we want you to perform at your best, feel energized and enjoy your diet so you can sustain it.

My philosophy as a coach is that I want people to never feel deprived, as that leads to unsustainable dieting and weight regain. I also want people to be healthy so a nice balance of mostly wholesome, nutritious foods with a treat of their liking that fits within their macro meals is what I tend to do. This allows them to stay on track while also giving their bodies the fuel it’s wanting and used to using.

I’m going to say this now…your body runs BEST on whole, unprocessed foods. It just does. You will be leaner, have greater energy and perform better on those than a pile of junk, so those IIFYM people eating donuts pre workout…yeah they may not gain weight because they have factored it in, but do you think that donut will give them the best training outcomes?

Probably not.

Also keep in mind that a treat to one person is not the same for another person. While some would want to work in seem ice cream (like my bf), others may really really love a sweet potato with peanut butter as a sweet treat. They both can work as long as your other nutrients are in check.

So thats the shortest I can explain that, so lets get into food now so you can see it come to life.

Breakfast. I was off yesterday so I got out the waffle iron and made him some protein waffles.

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Not pictured was the 4 egg whites scrambled with roasted red peppers, spinach and some cheddar Allegro (lactose-free) cheese

These used Yummy Sports Nutella protein and I topped it with caramelized banana + almond butter + Walden Farms syrup (doesn’t upset his stomach so he likes to use it)

Waffles–> blend together 2 tbsp coconut flour + 1 tsp chia seeds + 1/2 scoop whey + 40g oats + 1 egg white + 30g unsweetened apple sauce + 1/4-1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk + 1 tsp baking powder

Meal 2: This one he eats around 10ish and happened to be his pre workout yesterday. As a PT manager he works a split shift so gets some flex time late morning to go and lift

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This meal is super easy to meal prep and he loves it. This version is with sweet potatoes and extra lean ground beef. He’s also pretty happy with the portion size on that one. #AlwaysHungry #BiggerPortionsAreBetter

Meal 3 –> This was his post workout. He got a bit delayed getting to the gym so he was starving. He does take some pre workout and the stimulants calm his appetite a bit during his workout, but afterwards…look out.

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I like to call this the volume ‘kitchen sink’ stirfry. He has about 48g of carbs per meal but for extra volume uses the cauliflower rice to make this meal massive. With the remaining carbs he likes some roasted potatoes in his stirfry and this week, instead of quinoa, he added left over chickpeas to fill in the rest of the carbs.

Immediately post workout he also has a protein shake. No you don’t need to have a protein shake immediately post workout if you’re going to eat, but mentally he feels better if he does, so protein protein protein..

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We found this company at the Pro Show and they are super yummy and have no fillers or even gums! Happy tummy’s all around.

He has another protein shake in the later afternoon…because always hungry and his protein is really high. The higher protein is an experimental thing that my coach suggested so he’s trying it out. He likes it so far.

Before any comments..no high protein doesn’t hurt your kidneys if you’re a healthy individual. Studies have also shown that even a surplus in calories in protein doesn’t lead to the same degree of fat mass gain as fats/carbs. They have also shown that higher intakes in those who are in a deficit maintain greater lean muscle mass while loosing fat mass than those following traditional macronutrient ratios

Down the hatch goes protein shake numero two.

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This is also very easy for him to just have while busy at work with clients or his staff. Great flavour on this one too and we got this for like 10 bucks because it was on blow out at GNC.

Dinner –> As I was off, I like to make him fun dinners and I happen to see a Poke kit at the grocery store so that was all I needed. Deconstructed sushi is great in his eyes and I got to make a pretty Poke bowl like all of the ones I see plastered on IG

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Great success. He loved it and basically everything (minus the rice) is raw so it’s fast to make too. He’s a bit picky about how he eats his mango, so he picked that out to save for last but other than that, it was a thumbs up from him.

In the bowl –> tuna poke + sauce, serving of sushi rice, seaweed salad from Zehrs, avocado, zoodles, sesame oil, ginger, 1 tbsp soy sauce and some wasabi…plus mango that he picked out.

Bedtime Meal –> So this is where his treat comes in. His last meal is eaten with me in bed every night for us to unwind and watch a show together. We love our bed time snack routine and he takes it as his snack treat time.

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Protein is a standard (which we both have a protein to start..they are not eaten together haha) and than the fats and carbs are typically where he has some fun. Last night he tried out the popcorn I got for him, which was a white cheddar jalapeño flavour. He liked it and it had a nice kick to it.

So that is a day in the life of my bf on a cut. I won’t do the specific macro breakdown for you because that is personal to him and will serve nothing to you BUT he is loosing weight steadily and eating 3000 calories at the moment.

Ladies and gents, you don’t need to starve to loose weight. If you treat your body correctly and keep your metabolism high + your psychological self in check, you will get where you need to go. Patience and consistency are key and enjoying your life.

I hope that has helped a bit and thank you to my love for letting me steal pictures of all of his food yesterday before he ate it…

TGIF!

-Chelsea

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When Your Man Is Cutting…

I’m backkkkk and I have more time than ever so you all are going to help keep me distracted mmmkkayyy?

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So when you’re a nutrition consultant and your boyfriend asks you to help him cut, you be a good girlfriend and not only help slow his roll with his cutting style, but you track his macros and make sure this cut is more successful than previous cuts.

Most people like to cut crazy fast and so that is actually a challenge all on its own because he wants to drop faster than this ‘Pro’ wants to because #Impatience. But leave it to me and science and he will see I will come out on top in the end. He will be keeping as much of that muscle as possible due to slower cutting.

The numbers are only one part of the equation though, you see, when in the bodybuilding lifestyle there are many a things a girl should do for her man to show her support during the hard times of “Summer Shredding”

You must tell them they are not getting small. 

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There is a fine line between telling them they are getting shredded vs them perceiving you think they are getting small and scrawny. They are getting leaner BUT they are also growing massive shoulders at the same time….Really emphasize that! LOL! Keeps their ego happy while they feel they are starving, despite only a 200 calorie deficit.

Guys can shush it when the are loosing weight at 3000 calories

You have to constantly remind them that if they’re hungry that just means they need more veggies in their life…Or water.

If I ever didn’t have time to help him prep his food for the day, it was missing a certain filling and micronutrient dense addition. He has quickly learned how much veggies help keep his stomach from growling longer.

If they are also doing a caffeine/Pre/Stimulant detox…watch out. 

Oh boy, a cut PLUS no pre-workout. That is fun times. You’re job is to be the motivator and not cave when they say you can look at the protein powder while they “talk to the sales person,” which means they are getting a pre-workout sample.

#ISeeEverything

You should help them with their food…

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Or else they will be lazy a bro and just pack chicken and rice…than complain how much they hate chicken and rice and how life sucks.

Work on those wifey skills and help them out. I have taken it upon myself to be on top of his meal prep but MAN I did not realize how much food was needed for 3K calories…

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Maybe bit off more than I could chew but the creativity is a’ flowing friends.

Here’s some ideas for you based on some of his favourites. 

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Turns out he loves spaghetti squash. Hello volume! Plus he likes how filling it is while saving some extra carbs for later when he gets his fun meal..aka cereal

Cauli “rice” was also a great fine. that whole pot was 4 servings…FOUR and it’s massive.

We experimented and made cannelloni stuffed with Lactaid cottage cheese (higher protein, less fat) + canned crab meat. He liked them but with the amount of protein he needed, he felt like the crab was lost.

Shepherds pie was also a success. Really simple recipe too!

For 4 servings…

~2 large sweet potatoes, roasted and than mashed with rosemary, garlic powder and chili flakes

~around 800g of extra lean ground beef that was sautéed with mushrooms, zucchini and onion + liquid smoke, rosemary, 2 tbsp tomato paste and some fennel seeds.

Plop the beef mixture in the bottom of a sprayed tin and top with the mash and bake at 350 for about 20 minutes or until the top browns a bit (you can add some butter on top, I just sprayed it a bit with some coconut spray)

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He loved his little dairy free mac n’cheese cup. I used a lactose free, skim mozzarella cheese that we recently found at Zehrs and mixed it with some quinoa pasta (again, higher protein) and baked it in a ramekin until the top got nice and toasty. Served with a baked (my tin foil method) turkey breast fillet with steak spice and sautéed snap peas.

 

He was very very happy with his waffle sandwich. I tried to do the whole sweet potato chicken n’waffles thing but it had to be more macro friendly so I made a kabocha squash waffle (lower carbs) with chicken breast meat, his lactose free mozzarella cheese and a runny egg and he quite enjoyed it…

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When the photographer/chef says you have to show the sammich contents while pretending to eat it…

Kabocha Waffle (makes 2 waffles)

Blend together –> 90g cooked and mashed squash + 1/2 cup or 40g oats + 1 tsp baking powder + 1 egg white (32g) + Italian spices + water to make a thick batter. 

Spray your waffle maker (mine is sad and makes flat waffles…) and cook your waffles as directed. 

Annddd these little beauties were a quick and fun lil recipe from The Lean Green Bean that he actually loved.

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I used a lactose free white cheddar in the centre of each meatball (which was made with extra lean ground turkey + some chorizo sausage) and then rolled them in panko + Italian spices. The cheese burst while they were baking and turned out great over zoodles and sauce with spinach (cuz micros…).

And finally…breakfast. He has come to love avocado english muffins with runny eggs and turkey bacon but sometimes breakfasts sammiches sneak in there too…

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His camera makes this food look all glowy and such

Turkey bacon + spinach + Chicken breast + runny egg + sriracha and mustard on a whole wheat bagel. Good to go.

Ladies, if you and your man are into the bodybuilding lifestyle the time between March and summa generally means cutting season. Put your apron on and get your ‘swole’ comments ready because he would do the same for you so make him feel special during this hardship.

Have some fun and surprise him with some fancy feasts that fit his macros and you will win his heart and keep him shredding 😉

And if you don’t do that lifestyle, hope I gave some interesting food prep ideas!

Much love friends! 

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A Recipe…Say What?!

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I know right, how long has it been?

I have heard from some of my readers that they miss my random recipes. I never felt like my food posts were anything special, but hey, if they’re easy and tasty, why not share them?

Oh…

Happy Green St. Pattys Day y’all!

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Celebrating?

For me, I’m not a drinker, so this holiday that is pretty much based off of getting wasted for cheaper is really just an excuse for me to put green into as much of my day as possible.

Cue wearing a sparkly green shamrock headband to the gym.

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Yeah, I dress up to go sweat. 😀

Anywho, back to the recipe

…what’s a recipe again? HA

Savory oats. 

….Crickets….

Yes I realize I just said savoury and oatmeal in the same sentence BUT hear me out.

Oats are really like a blank canvas. Just like rice, or for a more similar texture, polenta or risotto. They are a neutral base screaming for flavour blasting toppings. Many of us have come to perceive oatmeal as purely a sweet dish, but really, you can turn it savoury just as easily and it will still be that warm bowl of comfort you know and love.

So before you say “bleh!” give them a chance. I made this particular bowl for my housemate, Rita, and she absolutely loved them. My other housemate, Emily, on the other hand was stuck in ‘sweet oats only’ mode and was afraid of them despite saying they smelled awesome.

I will convert her just you wait.

😉

So I went to the internet searching for some inspiration. I can confidently say that this girl knows how to make a pretty damn good bowl of proats but I had too many thoughts going on and needed something to calm them down a tad. Plus, I didn’t want to screw up the first bowl of savoury oats for zee housies because then they would never touch them again.

Can’t have that can we?

Hmmm..

Mexican? Rita loves avocado, beans…not so sure.

Taco! Spicy, yes, avocado, yes…hmm..

Wait, what is that seaweed in the cupboard…?

Sushi oats. Bam, sold. 

So with that, the bowl you see before you was created. Now if only I had some wasabi and pickled ginger….

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I hope you will conquer your fears and try this out. It legit smelled like sushi so if you swing that way, it’s something you would enjoy I’m sure.

Asian Sushi Oats. 

Serves 1

Ingredients for the Oats:

~1 Serving of Rolled Oats (1/2 cup)

~1 cup Chicken or Vegetable Broth

~1 egg or 1/4 cup egg whites

~1 tsp oil of choice (coconut, avocado, sesame or peanut)

~1 tsp minced garlic

~1-2 tbsp diced onion

~approximately 1/8 cup dried seaweed or other sea vegetable (I used dulse)

~1 chopped green onion.

NOTE. I did see many sites saying to add a dash of fish or oyster sauce to the base so if you have it on hand go for it. Just only use a little bit. 

Directions.

  1. Heat your oil in a pot (use one that had a lid) on the stove at medium/high heat. Chop up your vegetables. When the oil is hot, add the garlic and onions and sauté until they are softened and fragrant (a few minutes).
  2. Add your oats, sea vegetable and broth, place the lid on the pot and bring to a boil.
  3. When it comes to a boil, remove the lid and bring it down to a simmer (medium heat). Stir your oatmeal consistently to prevent it from sticking to the bottom. If it soaks up too much liquid too quickly, simply add some water. When the oats have ALMOST reached the consistency you like, crack your egg (or add your liquid egg whites) to the pot and stir quickly to prevent scrambling the egg. *It should stir in with little to no white bits.
  4. Cook for a final minute or two and then remove from the heat. Stir in half of your green onion and keep 1/2 for garnish. Keep warm while your prep your toppings.

For the Toppings

~1 egg

~1 tsp roasted sesame seeds

~other half of the sliced green onion

~Chili flakes to taste (optional)

~Drizzle of sesame oil and/or soya sauce.

~any other sushi like topping of your liking. I would recommend some seaweed (Rita has this cool dried and sticky seaweed-sesame strands), avocado and perhaps some pickled ginger. Smoked salmon would make an amazing topping as well if you are all fancy and such.

Simply fry up you egg for a runny-yolk doneness. While that is cooking, place all of your toppings on your oats. Top with the egg and drizzle with your topping of choice. If using sesame oil BE CAREFUL that stuff is strong!

Take pretty picture for IG and then dive in…

Oh wait…

Break the yolk. Then take another picture of that #YolkPorn

Then you can dive in.

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So yes, savoury oats sushi style. Good protein, complex carbs and healthy fats. Fuel up my friends.

Enjoy!

Have a safe St. Patty’s Day night!

Are you afraid of savoury oats?

-Chelsea

 


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Workless Holidays Are Marvellous

My Friends!

To all the Canadians who read up on lil space, Happy Thanksgiving weekend! I hope your belly’s are filled with all kinds of turkey, pie and goodies.

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Okay maybe Halloween comes first…but fyi in my world Christmas >>>>> Halloween. Just saying.

I’m linking up with Healthy Diva Life with to share my Marvellous Weekend (hello five days!) with you all. Thanks for the party Katie!

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1. Getting to actually enjoy the holiday and the famjam is so Marvelous

It is rare that I get a Thanksgiving weekend that isn’t right in the middle of midterms so I totally took advantage of the fact that this year my two first midterms were right before the long weekend by doing what any tired student would do

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Amirite?

The best.

So yes, I actually got to spend time with my family when they came up for dinner on Sunday for Thanksgiving and didn’t have to have my mind elsewhere or have to run away to study. Also, I got to do what I love doing which is cooking a big part of the dinner!

2. Remembering that gelato is amazing too is quite Marvelous.

Due to being home I knew my Friday Ice Cream Challenge Day would take place at my favourite ice cream shop. Unfortunately for me, my favourites (salted caramel and caribous caboose) are apparently seasonal and got the boot September first. After crying on the inside a lil bit I decided to wander over to their homemade gelatos to find Snickers gelato..

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Yes Snickers gelato! It had so many mixin’s too which is why I was not going for my beloved gelato because I really have come to love those mixin’s and gelato is generally smooth.

On the top was pralines and creme which is really good (caramel and more caramel) but I’m kinda kickin myself for not getting the Reeses (peanut butter gelato with Reeses and peanut butter…I know I would smack me too) gelato along with my other candy inspired flavour (which was amazing btw!).

Peanut butter and caramel = love in my eyes.

Next time it’s going down!

3. Dem shoes are Marvelous 

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Got my shoes ladies and gents! Aren’t they purdy. Yes, I’m that girl who wants the loudest colours possible! Went with the Nike Frees and they are super comfy so I’m happy. The flynet 5.0’s were great but unfortunately the smallest size they manufacture was still too big for my child-size feet.

Sometimes being #DollSized is not cute.

Speaking of shopping…

4. Binge-Buying Lululemon after a craving is also Marvelous

Three items…

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Wunder Under Crop Hi-Rise

332 bucks..

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Swiftly Tech 1/2 Zip

Oppps. But hey, I’m content.

2013 1125 Lululemon Wunder Under Pant Herringbone

Wunder Under Pant iii In the herringbone

Plus my Dad bought me a cute lil hat from Honey, a cute lil boutique that makes me wish I knew about this place when prom hit…

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Looks like this but its a rose colour all around…and not a baby hat 😉 

5. Food is Marvelous

Turkey on the grill via Dad..

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Sides by my Mama and I…

Mom’s new addition was her craving for a sweet mashed potato. It was simply mashed sweet taters with booth, brown sugar, cinnamon and a hint of nutmeg.

Plain mashed potatoes with buttah and milk for the gravy dumpers..and my Dad.

Roasted root vegetables by moi….purple sweet taters (thank you Whole Foods for bringing back my favs!), regular sweet pots, brussels and green beans with rosemary, olive oil and thyme

Roasted Asparagus

My Mom’s infamous roasted mustard glazed ham with roasted pineapple. Always a crowd pleaser.

Maple roasted carrots that I made for my Mama

Stuffing..not homemade, we will tackle that one at Christmas

My Dinnah plate..

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Hit the spot.

Oh and the unpictured peach pie and MY ICE CREAM (the Kawartha Salted Caramel Truffle my Dad bought for me a while ago)…which I haven’t touched yet…Fear Food:1, Chelsea:0, was the dessert for the fam. Yes, peach is not very Thanksgiving like but when it’s made with the last of the in season peaches from the farmers market, you bring that **it out in all it’s glory. The fam really enjoyed it. We did good Mom!

6. Finally making what you meant to make eons ago is Marvelous

Remembering that I had some beautiful ground lean elk in the freezer that I wanted to make up using the grill ended off becoming a foil pan full of freezer ready sliders (X2 servings), meatballs (X1 serving) and burger patties (X2 servings).

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Sorry for the horrible pictorial…it was getting dark by the time I snappsied the goods.

I really love the flavour of elk. It’s my new favourite game meat.

For these I simply seasoned with Worcestershire sauce, diced onion, garlic powder, chill flakes, fennel seed, and lots of cracked black pepper and then formed them up and tossed them on the grill.

Easy Peasy and now I got #RedMeatGains for days that I can just pull out of the freezer as I please.

7. Stocking up on your ‘at home goodies’ is always Marvelous

Those things that you can only really get when at home.

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So you make sure to get allllll them goods. For me, it’s taking a trip to my Freezer Place (a hidden gem here in Acton with all bulk frozen stuff but that includes organics, my game meats and lotsa local fish for great prices). So I hustled my lil tussle over to there and picked up a few hundred things essentials

~1 Arctic Char Fillet

~2 4ounce Venison Medallion Steaks

~2 4 Ounce Elk Medallion Steaks

~1 Package of Jumbo Sea Scallops

Thanks Mom and Dad 😉

8. Seeing my new Coach who will lead me to better health the way I want it to be done.

I expressing great gratitude to a family friend, Michael Grayer, for taking my challenging self on as I have finally accepted that I need help in this weight restoration process. The difference between him and a dietician…

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Bodybuilder, Torque Barbell Club Owner and very successful Prep Coach.

He will push me to gain weight I need to in the way that is more focused around my goals. Weight that is not just weight but that is strength and beauty. #MoeMusclesPlease

Yes we are working towards the same picture, but I know this process will still be tough. I need to give my control to him and know that he will not steer me wrong and that will be very hard for me. He will bring my physique to new heights which will not only make changes aesthetically, but it will bring me back up to an acceptable health status as well.

I can’t thank him enough. See more about him here.

Well thats it my friends! I have one more day off tomorrow (that is our winter ‘reading break’…one day HA! but hey I will take it) and that is when I trek over to the Barbell Club to chit chat with Michael and plan out how things are gunna be from now on. I’m nervous for the change but more excited then anything to see what he can bring for me.

Have a great week!

Favourite Thanksgiving side dish? I make a mean savoury and spice sweet tater mash that I really enjoy, but roasted veggies are always good.

-Chelsea


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A Week Of Locality

Hey Friends!

I have seen a few roundups of recipes lately featuring this months local produce. I don’t know about you, but I love being able to take advantage of local and in season produce for a few reasons:

  1. I like to support the community farmers
  2. It tastes better. It honestly does.
  3. You lower your ecological footprint. My veggies don’t need to a plane to get to my plate. I’m perfectly content with someone picking it for me. I ain’t afraid of germs. 😉
  4. We are drawn to things in season. Do you find that foods that happen to be in season look really appealing to you? There are some thoughts that we tend to crave things that are in season because they are what our bodies are intended to eat at that time + our body may recognize that they would have more nutrients still left in them as they are fresher (rather then being transported across the globe to reach you)

What are your thoughts?

Do you like eating local?

Do you like going to and/or attend your cities local markets?

As I mentioned, I have seen a ton of these recipe roundups (like this one for all my vegetarian readers out there) and so I decided I would jump on that bandwagon and do my own that showcased recipe inspiration for whatever dietary lifestyle you like to follow.

Before I get to those, what’s in season here in the Greater Toronto Area in May?

In SeasonPicMonkey CollageWow looks like Christmas. All dem reds and greens.

So yeah, slim pickings right now, but hey, Spring is slow to start so our produce is slow to really get crazy too.

Now onto the recipes. I hope you enjoy! 🙂

Here’s to a week of dinner ideas.

Startin your week with something fresh and vegetarian. Meatless Mondays if you will.

Risotto tight- Blog 1338

Spring Risotto with Poached Egg. This recipe can be made vegan by removing the egg. If you don’t do dairy or just butter in general, use some coconut oil for sauteing the vegetables. Light but bursting with flavour, this risotto is glowing with spring colours.

Springy Features: Asparagus, herbs and greens.

After some vegetable lovin, them Paleo folks need a lil more meat on their Tuesday.

Vermont pork tenderloin with fiddleheads made by Chef Shawn Calley

Vermont Pork Tenderloin with Fiddleheads. These funky shaped lil fiddleheads are highlighted alongside some good ol’ meat for them carnivore folks.

*Remove beans from the recipe and swap butter for grassfed ghee or coconut oil to make paleo*

Springy Features: Fiddleheads. You can also add some greens and fresh herbs to the succotash as well.

Warming Wednesday up with something light and gluten Free.

Poached Cod in Spring Vegetable BrothPoached Cod In Spring Vegetable Broth. This would make a great light dinner or lunch that highlights the freshness of the vegetables in season.

Springy Features: Asparagus. You could easily throw in things like greens.

Think Red on your Thursday.

Roasted Beet Noodles with Pesto and Baby Kale

 Roasted Beet Noodles with Pesto and Baby Kale. This would make a fun, colourful and light appetizer. Ever had bright red noodles before?

Springy Features: Beets, herbs and greens.

This one is a double feature. Didn’t think I would leave you with just a lil salad for your dinner would ya?

Screen shot 2015-05-07 at 9.46.12 PMSauteed Scallops with Peas and Rhubarb-Radish Relish. You all know my love for scallops so here is a fresh version of these gems of the sea that filled with many spring ingredients. Look at them colours!

Springy Features: Rhubarb, herbs, greens and radishes.

Fridays are for pizza no?

What about a low FODMAP pizza?

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Spring Veggie Polenta Pizza. Pizza! If you are cautious as to which cheeses you use (use FODMAP approved or forgo the cheese and use nutritional yeast for a cheesy note) then this dish is totally gut friendly. Gluten free and can use a variety of local ingredients for your toppings.

Springy Features: Asparagus, optional herbs and greens.

Saturday Dinner with the Kiddos.

For all of the parents out there with picky eaters, this fun dish may help sneak some seasonal veggies into your lil ones.

Blueberry Beet Pancakes. Everyone loves a good “brinner” or breakfast for dinner and what kid would be able to say no to pancakes? Let alone pancakes that are fushia! So they are happy because they are eating pancakes (which they wouldn’t taste the beety flavour, they simply add a natural sweetness) but you are happy because they are getting full of antioxidants. All in a days work.

Springy Features: Beets. You could make a strawberry rhubarb compote for the top for a more seasonal topper. Simply bring chopped strawberries and rhubarb and a lil bit of water to a boil and let simmer until the fruit breaks down. Sweeten if you choose and if you like it a bit thicker, add a tsp or two of chia seeds as a natural jell-ification method.

Sunday Fundays.

I had to leave you with at least one dessert. Of course, it’s a healthy-ish dessert. 😉

Ginger Oat Cookie & Strawberry Swirl Ice Cream Sammies | happy hearted kitchen

Ginger Oat Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches. It’s getting warmer here and there and how cute would these ice cream sammiches be as a way of cooling off? Simply swap the strawberry ice cream with this rhubarb one to get some seasonal produce into this gluten free treat.

Springy Features: Rhubarb and optional beet juice for colour.

Well there you have it friends. One full week of eating locally at dinner. Soon enough we will have much more to work with and that’s when seasonal cooking really gets to shine.

I hope you enjoyed this post and recipe round up. Thanks to all the great bloggers for their recipes.

Favourite seasonal produce item?

Do you like rhubarb?

Ever tried a fiddlehead?

-Chelsea


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The Meat Freak Talks Vegan Say What?!

Hey friends!

I had a request to talk give out some vegan recipes and I finally decided to tackle that one for ya! Oh hey Melissa, this ones for you. 🙂 Now, as you all probably know, I’m a complete carnivore (no offense to all the vegans and vegetarians out there) and due tot that, I don’t really have any full meals that are vegan to share with you. I was going to do one meatless Monday this vacation with a soup, but I didn’t think that was very creative so I thought it would be better to just do some bloglovin and share some amazing recipes from the blog-o-sphere. I will however give some tips and factoids about the nutritional requirements I think are important as you have to be much more mindful that you are giving you body what it needs for any diet that requires restriction.

So how ’bout some lil pointers first eh?

The first thing that comes to mind is protein. It’s the question that makes all vegans (and vegetarians) go crazy because it really isn’t that hard to get all of your protein from non-animal sources, it just takes a lil bit more thought.

I will go off the deep end here and say that if you’re a hard core bodybuilder you may need some protein powder of some kind to meet your needs if your diet is also carb restricted. I firmly believe that high protein is needed to build a decent amount of muscle, many will argue against this notion, but this is what I believe.

There are many sources of protein in nature other than in animal products. Yes, vegetarians will have it easier as they can include dairy, fish and eggs, if they chose, and that should mean they have no problem reaching their requirements for protein BUT vegans, it can be trickier.

With plant based proteins, they are incomplete (with a small handful of exceptions which most people don’t eat, like some forms of algae/kelp I believe), meaning they don’t have all of your amino acids. Due to this, it is crucial that you eat a variety of different foods to ensure you are getting all of your amino acids (ie building blocks of any new tissue, muscle, etc in the body), especially those essential ones that the body cannot make on it’s own. Now, I have now come to believe that you don’t need to do complementary pairing at every meal, but instead, having a day full of variety is enough to get what you need.

Here are some examples of foods for your essential ones. Make sure to include these in your diet daily as you cannot make these lil guys.

  • Histidine: Rye, bananas, green vegetables, rice
  • Isoleucin: Soy protein, seaweed
  • Leucin: Beans, lentils, nuts, rice, oats
  • Lysine: Beans, nuts, seeds, some grains
  • Methionine: Beans, nuts, seeds, grains,
  • Phenylalanine: Soy products, nuts and seeds
  • Threonine: Lentils, black beans and sesame seeds
  • Tryptophan: Spirulina, unsweetened chocolate, seeds, some grains (like quinoa), and dates
  • Valine: Beans and legumes

The only other issue of getting enough protein with this lifestyle is whether or not your body responds well to the protein sources you have left. Personally, not only would I never be able to give up meat without feeling like I’m giving up the best foods (again, sorry to those who are not meat eaters, I’m just being honest), but my body just wouldn’t work eating vegetarian proteins. I can only eat beans and lentils once in a blue moon because they upset my stomach (way to gassy), I refuse to eat soy and well….there’s nothing really substantial left. Check out the video (click on the image) I posted below for my take on this issue.

So now that we got the big one out of the way, some other vitamins and minerals of concern, especially with vegans include:

B12: This guy is very hard to find naturally in non-animal products so you’re kinda stuck going with supplements or fortified foods. One natural source I do know of is nutritional yeast (which more use a cheesy tasting substitute). Guys, you need this one for sure as it can wreck havoc on your system from damaging your nerves, causing anemia or leading to heart problems. Take this one seriously or you will find yourself in a convulsive fit.

Omega 3 Fatty Acids: Without fish, this one can be tough because plant based sources are tricky to use by the body. For example, while flax is a source of omega fatty acids, specifically ALA, the body has to convert that ALA to EPA and DHA and it’s not very efficient at this process. As a result, you are kind of stuck getting a small fraction of what you see on the nutrition label. Best to find a supplement offering a high amount of DHA and EPA. The source is often algae.

Calcium: Although in smaller amounts, this one can be found in a number of plant based foods. Some of those include, dark leafy greens, beans, legumes, nuts, and many green vegetables. The issue once again comes down to the ability to absorb the calcium as there is a pesky thing called oxalate that is found in quite high amounts in those foods and that blocks absorption. Often, supplements are still required to get enough after accounting for lack of absorption.

Vitamin D: Once again, supplementation or fortified foods are your friends here as Vitamin D is a toughie in non-animal foods. Mushrooms are one of the only natural sources I can find.

Iron: Similar issue in a way to calcium. Iron comes in two forms, heme and non heme. Heme, which is in animal products, is much more bioavailable to our body’s to use, while plant based non-heme iron is harder for the body to use and thus you end up with much less in the end. Plant based foods such as grains, beans and lentils are great sources of iron BUT ensure to eat them with vitamin C to help with absorption.

Here is a great website to check out for more info! Click here.

Okay, wow this is getting long and we haven’t even gotten to the recipes yet. Okay, one final comment before I get to the food.

One major trend I see all too often with vegans and vegetarians is the fact that they eat way too many carbohydrates (as they may turn to fast or processed foods) because they don’t eat enough protein and therefore just don’t know what to eat. In the end, because carbohydrates really don’t satisfy you when consumed solo, you find yourself constantly hungry and munching and that can lead to weight gain. Just because meat is taken out of the equation (which is often the center focus of our meals these days) doesn’t mean that all you have left are carbohydrate heavy dishes.

On the other hand, I also see many very undernourished vegans because they are eating too many low calorie plant based foods and not enough fats and proteins. Although you may be getting lots and lots of vitamins and minerals from those veggies, your body needs fats and protein to sustain you, and, without them, it will start to break down quickly.

So, the key is balance. Be mindful that you get enough protein at every meal and don’t go overboard with excessive amounts of carbohydrates (as many protein sources are also quite high in carbohydrates), take supplements as needed and listen to your body. If you’re constantly getting sick, feeling tired or just not right, either you are missing something vital in your diet or it’s time to take a hard look at whether this lifestyle and determine if it’s something your body can handle.

Alrighty, now onto the fun stuff!

Zee foods.

I have hunted down a good number of recipes that I hope you enjoy. I tried to include a variety of styles, types of meals, ease of cooking and tastes for you all.

Screen shot 2014-12-22 at 9.37.40 PMOh She Glows. Protein, check. Healthy carbphydrate sources, check. Greens…I would add some kale perhaps or another dark leafy green. Also, the fat free dressing is not something I’m a fan off. Add some fat with olive oil or add avocado to your salad so it sticks around a lil bit longer.

Black Bean & Brown Rice Burritos

The Everyday Veggie. High protein but a lil on the carby side for my liking as it’s rice inside a tortilla. I would wrap it all up in a collard green wrap.

Chatelaine. I love the fact that they didn’t put it on a bun! They used portabello mushrooms as their buns which are natural sources of both protein and vitamin D.

fall pumpkin buckwheat breakfast bowl-1-3

Eating Bird Food. You didn’t think you would get away without getting something that looks like oatmeal did you? I would however add some more protein to this dish by either adding some protein powder (vegan of course, peanut flour would be ideal) or hemp seeds.

My New Roots. For the request for a vegan cheesecake, here is a beauty! Do not be afraid of the fats in this one as they are coming from healthy sources including nuts and coconut oil PLUS this is a treat. It’s much better to be eating those fats then the hydrogenated ones found in a commercial cheesecake no?

See, being vegetarian or vegan is not hard, it just takes a lil bit of base knowledge about your bodily needs, some more thought perhaps in the beginning and dropping the stigma that you will be eating leaves for the rest of your life.

Experiment and have some fun!

I hope this post helped some of you out.

It’s officially Christmas Eve tomorrow and I can’t wait!

All the best,

-Chelsea


59 Comments

Spill It, Sundays #4

Happy Sunday Friends!

I want to first start this post by thanking you all so much for all the love over my last post (my vlog). It really meant a lot as I was kind of nervous to post it as I’m, as I said, not the most camera happy person. I promise to be a bit more organized with my thoughts the next time around as I felt I was super scattered and “trail-offy.”  It’s all a learning process I suppose. I also appreciate the feedback and all of your fabulous questions!! So many to answer in the next video. 😀 Hugs!!

I do want to make mention that my non tech savy self fixed the whole cutting off at minute 11 thing. The full video is now posted and the link in the last post has been updated to the full 31 minute version 🙂 Thanks to all of you that let me know that it was incomplete!

Now onto this post’s topic…

I had the nicest lil cardinal singing to me when I began this post…I say began as these posts are always started first thing in the AM and then completed following my day at work. Some peeps just don’t get your typical lazy Sunday.

What do your Sundays look like?

Anywho lets jump right into the topic of today’s post which is…

Lettin it all hang out with Arman over at The Big Mans World.

Did that sound wrong…or gross? Get your mind out of the gutter, I meant our answers geesh.

The big man's world

This weeks edition is brought to us all by Jen over at Chase the Red Grape so send her some love by checkin out her blog too!

1) I am coming to visit! Where would you take me and what would we do?

To be honest…I would prolly take ya to the gym or the farmer’s market because those are my favourite places 😛 Oppps. But for real, if we could try something new and exciting together there is this circus school (Zacada Circus School) in Hamilton that I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to go and try out. You basically pay like 20 bucks or something cheap for and hour and a half of circus ring hoppin, silk rope sliddin and back bendin. Exercise made super fun is a great trip to me!

gallery1Weeeooo!! So much fun! Check out their website

Oh and then I would take you to Chucks because you can’t come visit me without tryin out a dirty burger 😉 Preferably, a dirty exotic meat burger.

Gotta end the trip on a “you gotta eat here” food note right?

2) What is the one thing you never leave the supermarket without buying?

Okay okay I’m going to be uber boring with this one but my top five “oh I will need this in a day or two so I mind as well pick more up” buys would be…

  1. Kabocha
  2. Mushrooms
  3. Swiss Chard
  4. Fish
  5. Acorn Squash

Calling squash addicts anonymous now.

I will say that I rarely leave without some form of seafood in my hand. Blasted fish counter and those lovely gems of the sea just get me every time.

3)When I say burpees, you say…

Agreed?

4) What is the first website you check in the day?

A show of some kind while nommin on breaky because food always comes first 😀

Amirite or amirite-rrr?

5) Tell me about one act of kindness you have done recently?

It had been a while since raisins and oatmeal had married and produced one of in my personal spotters favourite goodies so on Saturday I brought the Deanster in some homemade skillet cookies in his favourite flavour

Oatmeal Raisin.

20140525-204428.jpgThese cookies are not winning any prizes in the appearance department that’s for sure BUT they are quite good and very easy to make. Want a soft and warm cookie with a slightly crispy outside in five minutes? Try out skillet cookies! I got this idea years ago from the genius herself, Dana over at the Minimalist Baker. After seeing her recipe, I created my own version to use as a pre-workout snack that I could cart around with me in class before heading to the gym. Her oatmeal cookie pancakes took on the form of my “skillet cookies” as I made my batter quite a bit thicker, thus creating a much chewier and ‘oatier’ product than your average pancake. Much more like a cookie I would say. Her recipe is here, and I should really get around to posting my own version as they are really good actually eatin either as a stack of ‘cakes or cookies.

Please note that I’m still thinking I found an actual ‘skillet cookie’ recipe but I’m failing at remembering the amazing blog that posted them despite literally seeing the blog page in my mind.

Continuing on my baking spree of kindness, this blueberry paleo loaf made it into the hands of my Dad for snackage over the week at work…

20140525-204421.jpgAs I had never worked with JUST almond flour before, I wanted to use a recipe as guidance for my first attempt to wrap my mind around the tricks. Thanks to Kristen at Live Simply for this amazing recipe. I made a few tweaks as I always do (subbed 1 tbsp of pure maple syrup and a few Stevia packets for all of the honey, used apple sauce and bloobs rather than banana and used 2 eggs+1 flax egg) and my Dad very much enjoyed it!

6) You have a carton of eggs, what would you make with them?

Hmmm…toughie as I don’t really cook with eggs too much. This is totally sad because I really do enjoy them! So let me find a tasty recipe to use’em all up.

Oh Oh I got a good one!

I would have a burger party and everyone could rock perfectly poached eggs on their [bunless bison] burgers.

I have always wanted to try that!

Oh wait!

Actually I have a better idea! Since we are on the topic of acts of kindness

If it was around Easter, I would bring those eggs over to the McMaster Children’s Hospital (where I used to volunteer in the ER) and we could paint some easter eggs. That would be so much fun and hopefully bring some happiness to those kids waiting for hours in the ER.

7) Tell me about a sight you have seen that took your breath away.

Coming home yesterday evening from the Eaton Centre on the bus, we drove past Cootes Paradise as we came around the bend to the highway exit and it was just that perfect time of dusk where the clouds were that lovely shade of pinky-orange and cast a stunning glow over the water. It’s the simple things that are the most beautiful I think.

What I saw was not as breathtaking as this image, but you get the idea.

8) Your an elephant, what would you never forget?

Those who were sincerely kind to me.

I believe that you should always always always remember and cherish those people who stumble into your life and want only good things for you. Showing empathy, love, kindness and respect is not always a given these days and shouldn’t be taken lightly.

9) Reveal to me a ‘slang’ word or term that you use where you are from, and what it means!

Smorgasbord. Not really a a native slang term but rather a term that my Mom passed to me…and the only slang term I can think of at the moment. It basically means a combination of things. We often use it to describe food when there is a whole bunch of goodies combined into one great thing

My proatmeal for example 😉

…. Or for a more universal example…

…your average Christmas or Thanksgiving feasting plate.

10) Tell me a corny joke!

I saw this yesterday morning on Facebook and it made me smile and laugh despite it’s corny nature…

Thanks again to Jen and Arman for the hook up this week!

Last act of kindness you did for someone?

What’s your favourite way to use eggies?

Would you try out that circus school with me?

-Chelsea