Recipes

Coconut Chicken Nuggets and Last Week’s Fiasco

Switching to the Paleo lifestyle has definitely been an interesting journey so far. Although it meant discarding lots of delicious (unhealthy) treats, it was also a new culinary challenge for me. When I spend several days in a row eating properly, I feel great. I don’t crash, I sleep well, all is good. We try to keep cheating for the weekend but we also try to minimize the damage with modified version of our favorite junk food.  We did really well for the first 2-3 weeks of January but this past week was way off track. I’m not quite sure what happened. We had more evening meetings, there was some snow (really not much but exciting enough for Virginia!), and I guess we were just generally out of it.

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As you can see, our weekly dinner planner was quite a mess last week. Scratched-off meals and too many meals out! The list at the bottom is what we had in the fridge and the freezer…so we didn’t even have the empty-fridge excuse!

As you can see on my planner, the week started off well. Eggs and veggies on Monday and a fabulous steak on Tuesday with sweet potato fries (my latest obsession) and green beans. But then it all fell apart. To be fair, on the week nights that we cheated, we generally made sure to pick Paleo-friendly dishes. But still, as I am really wanting to focus on more home meals, it was pretty disappointing to look at, once the week was over.

On a happier note, I took my husband on his first trip to the Cheese Shop on Saturday. We found a lot of snacks, not-so-bad treats and local meat that will fit perfectly in our diet. It was interesting to go there without coming back home with giant bags of baking goods, and instead, being super excited about 3 big bags of dates! Quite a change, isn’t it? 🙂

Some of the goodies with bought...including a few treats, such as the saffron rice, tapioca, and dark chocolate covered cranberries.
Some of the goodies we bought…including a few treats, such as the saffron rice, tapioca, blue popcorn, and dark chocolate covered cranberries.
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Meats and cheeses…the cheese will be consumed in moderation and is definitely acceptable in small quantities.

I really do hope that this week will be back on track. We cheated so much last week that we’re honestly tired of it. Eating out so much, as fun as it seems, reminded us of why we don’t do this anymore. Too much food eaten, too many carbs and sugar consumed, and too much money spent!

This week, I didn’t even go to the grocery store (other than the Cheese Shop) as we still have most of the food we bought last week and I don’t want any of it to go to waste.

Today, I decided to make coconut chicken nuggets. I followed this recipe and it was both very easy and super tasty! The recipe follow the Paleo guidelines and is a good substitute for junk food! I served it with a side of sweet peas and broccoli (we are seriously just going through what’s in the fridge/freezer…it doesn’t always make sense).

My prep station for the chicken nuggets. It was quite simple although slightly messy. My fingers looked like big nuggets after too many egg dip, flour cover (and repeat). :P
My prep station for the chicken nuggets. It was quite simple although slightly messy. My fingers looked like big nuggets after too many egg dip, flour cover (and repeat). Haha!

I also made my first aioli! I figured it would be a nice dipping sauce for the chicken. It was so very simple, especially as I used my immersion blender instead of a whisk. It seriously took 5 seconds to blend. I followed this very simple recipe and it was a revelation. Why would I ever buy mayo again? Although I understand that aioli is all about garlic, I would probably reduce the garlic cloves quantity at least by half in the future. I seasoned the sauce with a dash of cayenne pepper and some curry powder as well.

The aioli was so very easy to make with the immersion blender! I only need to adjust the flavors in the future but I definitely have the basic technique down.
The aioli was so very easy to make with the immersion blender! I only need to adjust the flavors in the future but I definitely have the basic technique down.
The final result: Coconut chicken nuggets, steamed broccoli & peas, and aioli
The final result: Coconut chicken nuggets, steamed broccoli & peas, and aioli

Let’s hope that tonight’s meal will be the first step of a very successful week. I plan to make some bacon chili tomorrow so we’ll see how that goes…

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