Knowing that I was going to come back from our Italian honeymoon carb ladden and trying to start a family, another Whole30 seem like a good idea. This time around I recruited by SIL (again, she did the last one with me) as well as my mother and another girlfriend. I have our little private facebook group set up and even spent several days finding and scheduling out posts to help keep all of us motivated. I decided to set the start date for the Tuesday after we got back from our honeymoon so I’d have time to prep and didn’t dump Day1 on top of returning to work after being gone for two weeks.
The next thing was to get myself set up and prepared. Before we left on vacation I scheduled a grocery delivery to show up the day we got back so I could hit the ground running. Here’s what my order looked like:
Lemon Juice, La Croix Sparkling Water (Lemon, Lime, and Grapefruit), Italian Seasoning Blend, Chili Powder, 100 Calorie Packs of Plain Almonds, Cashews (unsalted), Eggs (dang freeloading chickens), Avocados, Jalapenos, Brown Mushrooms, Zucchini, Sweet Potatoes, Cilantro, Green Onions, Celery, Fresh Dill, Romaine Lettuce, Sugar Snap Peas, Mini Peppers, Cauliflower, Cucumber, Bell Peppers, Tomatoes, Fresh Pineapple Chunks, Fresh Berries, Broccoli, Marinara (sugar-free), Canned Bamboo Shoots, Canned Sliced Water Chestnuts, Canned Diced Jalapenos, Aidells Chicken Apple Sausage (Total $167.90)
I couldn’t find products I was happy with for the following, so I later shopped for:
Organic Free-Range Whole Chicken, Organic Free-Range Chicken Thighs, Bacon (w/o sugar), and Spaghetti Squash. I ended up going a little crazy and also picked up apples, onions, baby tri-color potatoes, fresh thyme, fresh bay leaves, and fresh thai basil.
We also have beef, fish, and pork in the freezer from local sources.
Meal prep was pretty familiar for me. I prepped the following items:
Curry Chicken Salad – chopped poached chicken, diced sweet onion, diced apple, homemade mayo, diced celery, peas (previously frozen), chopped pecans, curry powder, and apple cider vinegar.
Creamy Mushroom Soup – chicken bone broth, mushrooms, shallots, fresh thyme, fresh bay leaves, and minced garlic.
Taco Meat – ground beef, can of diced tomatoes, can of diced jalapenos, 1 bag of frozen peppers and onions, 1 small can of tomato paste, chili powder, smoked paprika, and garlic powder. (This really doubles as chili, but I like it on salads too.)
As well as:
- Panag Chicken Curry – 6 chopped chicken thighs, 2 chopped bell peppers, 1 chopped onion, 1 can of bamboo shoots, 1 can of water chestnuts, 2 small boxes of coconut cream, 1 can of pineapple in juice, and 4 TBSP panag curry paste.
- Italian Meat Balls – ground beef, egg, coconut flour, nutritional yeast, and Italian seasoning.
- Hard boiled eggs – uhm, eggs 🙂
- Homemade Mayo – oil, eggs, lemon juice, and salt. (This was used in the chicken salad and is also on hand for when ever it is needed.)
- Ghee – unsalted pastured butter.
Half of the taco meat and chicken curry went in to the freezer. The rest of the chicken curry, chicken salad, and mushroom soup went in to single portion containers for grab-and-go lunches.
A couple base things I had to do was the poached chicken and make bone broth. To create both items I put a whole chicken (including the neck) in to the crockpot along with 1 chopped onion, 2-3 chopped carrots, 2-3 chopped celery stalks, 3 bay leaves, a sprinkling of whole peppercorns, 2 TBSP of apple cider vinegar, several garlic cloves, and a little salt. Then I filled the remaining space in the pot with water.
After about 2-3 hours (on High, 3-4 hours on Low) I pulled the chicken out and stripped the meat from the bones, skin, and other bits. The cooked chicken was chilled and then used in the chicken salad and the bones, skins, and bits went back in to the crockpot. After another 8-10 hours I ran the bone broth through a strainer and in to a big pitcher. Once it settled and cooled a little I skimmed most the fat off the top (just cause I don’t like greasy soup). Most of the bone broth went in the mushroom soup, but I still had a quart left over that just went in to the fridge to be used as needed.
I made homemade ghee for the first time and it was simpler than I expected. I put a pound of unsalted pastured butter in to a small saucepan and put it on medium. I let it foam up and keep cooking until I could see the milk proteins on the bottom of the pan browning. It took maybe 10-15 minutes. Then I strained the fat in to a pint mason jar. Easy peasy and way more affordable. Look at that golden elixir!
All in all I spent about half the day prepping food and we now have a good variety of things to make lunches and dinners easy for the next week or more.