March 23rd, 2017
Happy almost Friday! I love this video!!!
It's been almost a month now and I wanted to share some thoughts about this whole dairy free experience.
These past few weeks have been eye opening. Have you ever found yourself speaking with someone that is vegan/paleo/rescuesanimal/doescrossfit? Well, I have, and I found it to be so frustrating listening to them yap on about why they live life that way and why I should too. But a funny thing happened to me this past month - I realized that I was that person. Everywhere I went, I had to somehow work in that I was currently 'dairy-free.' I received my share of eye rolls and head tilts followed by a statement that usually went something like "I don't know how you do that, I live for cheese."
I have to say - I get both sides now. It's really difficult to maintain a lifestyle that is slightly different from the norm. I don't want to continually preach to the world that I do not eat dairy - but the food options are so few and far between, if I am not vocal I would be surrounded by dairy at every social gathering I go to. So I ask - friends and family of those currently observing a different dietary lifestyle than your own - please consider what we are going through. No, we can't just eat that food just this one time - we have made a commitment and are trying our best to stick to it!
Is this dairy free lifestyle working? Honestly - yes. While I have had a few small break outs around my forehead and chin (probably hormonal), I have not had a single episode of the cystic, painful pimples I once dealt with on a weekly basis.
I have been making more home cooked dinners and lunches, planning out my snacks better.
I have been exploring with so many new spices, herbs, and flavor profiles.
Ryan's (the fiance) birthday was this past weekend and he asked me to make his two favorite things - cookies and spaghetti & meatballs. Both of course, I usually make with tons of butter and cheese, respectively. So I had a fun time experimenting in the kitchen to come up with something we could both eat and enjoy. Unfortunately, the cookies were terrible so I do not have a recipe to share. But I do have a killer Turkey Bolognese recipe I will be posting shortly.
Here are some new finds that will make your life that much better...
Pamela's dairy-free gluten-free brownie mix. Noms.
Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar chickpea puffs. Double Noms.
Most of my recipes will be dairy free for the next few months. However, my blog posts will start to cover new nutrition topics after this.
Have a fantastic weekend!!!
a week in the life
A full week has gone by! And I am still alive! Not to be too dramatic, but I did not think I was going to do well. Boy, did I surprise myself! Not only did I abstain from all dairy, but I experimented with new recipes, and brought my own lunch to work every day. Gold stars for Ashley.
Here is what I learned this past week...
Paleo and Vegan websites are a great resource for someone looking for dairy-free alternatives.
Coffee just isn't the same without cream. So I've ditched the coffee and gone straight to espresso. **hands shaking slightly**
Dairy isn't the hardest thing I've ever given up. Don't get me wrong. Do I miss my yogurt in the morning and my Romano cheese sprinkled on everything else? Yes. Yes I do. I went out to dinner the other night and was dreading the food envy that was about to be had, and to my surprise I was FINE. Seeing and smelling the different dishes garnished with creamy sauces and aged cheeses did not send me into a tail spin the way I thought it would. If anything, it made it that much easier for me to choose a healthy dinner (i.e. more veggies, fish, lean protein/less pasta). At least I could still have my glass of red wine! After dinner, I felt full and satisfed, but not over stuffed and sick.
During the week I made three tasty suppers (with enough to be had for lunch the next day) and really did not miss dairy very much at all.
This was my favorite of the week - homemade pulled pork stuffed into a baked sweet potato with a purple cauliflower steak. YUM.
Thanks to my wifi controlled slow cooker, I was able to cook the pork all day whilst at work. I coated boneless pork shoulder with a dry rub of brown sugar, chili powder, cayenne, garlic powder, and paprika then let that sit in the refrigerator over night. In the morning I put the meat into the crockpot with 2 cups natural apple juice (love Martinelli's - ever see Master of None? Go watch it) and 1 cup apple cider vinegar (Braggs, of course) and put that baby on low for 8 hours. The sweet potatoes and and cauliflower were simply roasted for about 45 minutes. Top it all off with your fave BBQ sauce and enjoy!
I also adapted this recipe Spicy Sausage Pasta - a household favorite. I simply removed the cream and cheese. To maintain the creamy style of the dish, I pureed a can of cannellinibeans with some chicken broth and a tablespoon of Nutritional Yeast (for the cheesy flavor). I honestly could not tell the difference between the old and new recipe!
I recently purchased the cookbook One Pan Two Plates, by Carla Snyder and decided to try out the Sweet and Sour Stir Fry with Beef, Broccoli, and Mango. It was fantastic! I added a few extra veggies I had laying around, like mushrooms and zucchini. I also subbed the brown rice out for some quinoa. Definitely going to be on our monthly rotation!
I bet you're wondering about my skin. Wasn't that the whole point of this? Well, yeah. I feel that it is too soon to determine if my short-lived dairy free lifestyle has actually had an impact on my skin. I can tell you (with a huge smile) that there have been no new breakouts yet - so I must be doing something right!
BRB LYLAS BFFAEAE XOXOX TTYL
Ashley Shaw MS, RD, CDN