greenery, baby

As you may have read by now, from June 20 (Monday) until July 20, I’m turning freshcrackedpepper into a journal of my Paleo eating experiment. If you want to learn more about the thinking behind this approach to food, check out my coach Nell’s blog, or The Paleo Diet.com. (It also goes by other names, like Primal, Stone Age, Caveman, etc.) I’m trying it to see how I feel sans grains, gluten, and dairy.

Today was Day Three. My co-workers seem to be the ones bearing the brunt of my strange new ways. This morning, one of them went to heat a beverage up in the microwave, and voila! there was my breakfast, waiting for me to come back and get it. It was leftover dinner from last night: spinach, chunks of cooked salmon, and halved cherry tomatoes sauteed in coconut oil. Let’s just say he didn’t have the most positive things to say about it!

lunch: stewed "salsa" chicken over spinach and romaine, cherries, kombucha

I slipped a little today, not in terms of what I ate, but in not weighing portions exactly or eating the specific things Nell prescribed. She said substituting is OK, however. Her plan is just a guideline, and as long as my creativity falls within the Paleo confines, it’s all good. Chicken or salmon. Mango or melon.

The marine layer, or “June gloom” stuck around all day today, instead of “burning off” (the cool thing to say if you live by an ocean). Consequently, I felt a little gloomy myself. Came home, entertained the cat, patched some bicycle tubes, and texted a friend to see if she wanted to go walking on the beach. She was heading out for dinner with her husband and some friends I happen to know, so invited me along.

My first meal out on Paleo. Yikes! Would they think I was crazy? Would I have to answer a million questions? When I found out we were going to a place called the Greenery Raw Cafe in Leucadia (where we used to live and which I’ve been wanting to try for months), I was relieved. And I was right: There wasn’t any meat, unfortunately, but almost everything else was A-OK. (Or maybe that’s P-OK).

the curry

I scarfed down some turkey breast before leaving, just in case. When it came to mealtime, I got to try the Creamy Spinach Salad, whose “cream” is blended pine nuts and garlic. It was surprisingly good! I ordered the Vegetable Curry (above–it was dark in there, hence the awful iPhone photos!) It featured broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini and avocado in a creamy curry sauce made of macadamia and pines nuts. Mmmm!

I also got to try the Spaghetti and Veggie-Walnut “Meat”balls, which were served over noodles made entirely of zucchini, and marinara sauce. And, their Pad Thai. I was impressed at how well they preserved the flavors of the “original” meals, or how you’d expect them to taste at a “normal” restaurant. So vibrant-tasting, though, and great for summer, as they’re all served room-temperature or cold.

spaghetti and "meat"balls

My only stumble was the burger, which I only had a few small bites of. I checked the menu and oops–sprouted buckwheat! I didn’t feel too badly, however, as I’ve been 100 percent successful thus far. My analytical friends went on to discuss what grains and vegetables would’ve actually been around before agriculture, and what it would be like to really have to hunt and gather for our food. There was talk of urban chicken-keeping and wild potatoes and whether the cavemen had spices like curry.

Probably not. But this is the “modern” take on Paleolithic eating, not an exact replica. If that was the case, I’d have withered up by now. Off to bed–I’ve got an early swim and then a potential Triathlon Club Aquathon race, if I have a productive enough day.

the buckwheat culprit!

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2 responses to “greenery, baby

  1. You should try making the spaghetti with zucchini at home (with REAL meatballs) at home…it’s really good. You can also make lasagna with zucchini by cutting it in fatter, thin slices. Makes you almost forget about regular pasta!

  2. I use spaghetti squash. It’s a bit easier than using zucchini (and it’s the same general vegetable family).

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