lamb

Sun Basket Week 2

We are enjoying the Sun Basket recipes so far. This post is about week two’s recipes.

A reader commented on my last post about the waste of these meal services. I wanted to comment on that. With Blue Apron I remember feeling like the waste was pretty bad (and kind of a turn off for me). But so far with Sun Basket they seem pretty good about limiting waste. The box arrives and each of the three meals are packed in a paper bag (so we recycle it). There are a few plastic bags for certain items but overall there is not a lot of packaging or waste. I’m pretty happy with that.

Week 2

Lettuce-wrapped lamb sliders with sweet potato “fries”

610 calories, Paleo, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free

This meal was by far my favorite of the boxes we’ve had so far. I absolutely LOVED the flavors. The tahini/paleo mayo sauce was super flavorful and delicious, too. I loved the lettuce cups. I’ve seen a lot of those types of recipes but it never worked well when I tried it because the lettuce always ripped so it didn’t work well as a cup (or bun substitute). But the recipe described how to do it: basically cut the base off the head of lettuce and then carefully peel the leaves off. It worked a lot better and they didn’t rip.

This recipe was a home run and we will definitely be making again in the future. I’ve seen ground lamb at Trader Joe’s on occasion so I will try and look again next time to see if I can find it.

Hungarian pork meatballs with cauliflower “rice”

630 calories, Paleo, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free

The second recipe was the Hungarian meatballs. I’ve made cauliflower rice a bunch of times and I’m a fan. So far the meals have been pretty good overall and the portions were right. In this one there seemed to be a lot of cauliflower rice so we ended up making it 3 servings and I had some of the leftovers for lunch the next day.

I’ve never worked with watercress before and honestly, I don’t know what it really added to the dish. It didn’t really taste like anything to me. Maybe I’m wrong?

Everything worked with this recipe but it felt a little dry and it needed some kind of sauce. I ended up adding some Goddess Dressing to the meatballs and that helped.

Steak with bagna càuda anchovy sauce, broccoli, and radishes

690 calories, Paleo, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free

This was a very interesting recipe. Sure it was steak and veggies, which we do often on our own, but sauteing the broccoli was a new technique for us and radishes are not something we eat–like ever. I’ve pickled radishes a few times before and that was good but I can count on one hand the times I’ve eaten radishes. It was nice to try something new!

The steak was tender and delicious and I absolutely loved the anchovy sauce! I wasn’t sure I would but it was really flavorful and went great with the steak and vegetables.

I have a discount code, if you want to use it!

Back on The Plan

Yes, I was disappointed that I didn’t see a change in the scale after a week of denying myself things I love (chocolate, fruit, bread). I don’t feel angry or upset that I didn’t lose weight. I suppose I feel more vindicated in my belief that fad diets just don’t work and counting calories works for ME. That being said, I agreed to  continue “The Diet” for one more week. I want Michael to feel supported in his efforts to lose weight and he’s pretty stoked having seen a 5 pound loss.

I think this week we have a much better Meal Plan worked out so that I won’t be so miserable–or burned out on eating the same foods. First, I’m going to make a 13 Bean Soup for us to alternate for lunches. The plan LAST WEEK had been to make Lentil Soup to take for lunches when we got sick of salads. I never had the time to make the soup so we were both burned out by mid-week on eating salads every day.

The plan will be modified in one area: I am going back to drinking coffee at work with my flavored creamer. I really don’t care if the 5 grams of Sugar/Carbs end up effecting the scale next week because I want my one cup of coffee a day. I tried going coffee-free last week and just felt lethargic. Drinking tea did nothing for me. It was a strange phenomenon because I went coffee-free for a whole year last year and went through no withdrawals and had no side effects. I never felt tired, I never craved coffee, I didn’t miss it. So why did it effect me SO MUCH last week??

I probably won’t post my food every day and every meal. There will be a few modifications for what we eat and I’ll describe those and show the new meals we try. But honestly I think you guys have a good idea of what type of food is eaten on this diet.

EXERCISE

Sunday morning I slept in a bit and Michael and I had a huge breakfast (being back on The Diet). I let it digest a bit before I headed to the pool. Sunday’s swim was MUCH better! My arms were SORE from weight lifting on Saturday but they weren’t FATIGUED like they were on Friday. I had energy, I was fast, I felt strong and everything was a-okay in the pool. The only downside? No matter how hard or fast I swam, I could not get my heart rate up for the life of me. I have no idea why my heart rate was staying so low but as a result, I did not burn much in the calorie department. 🙁


I saw a guy in the pool who was really struggling with his swimming. He had a good body so I could tell he worked out a lot, but maybe swimming wasn’t his normal exercise? I really wanted to help him and give him some pointers to hopefully make it easier on him but I didn’t. I never know if comments or suggestions would be welcomed by people, so I usually keep quiet. First, his head wasn’t aligned right. He was swimming the Front Crawl/Freestyle. His chin was almost touching his chest. I could not figure out why he held his head that way because it made his whole body out of alignment. Next, because his head was too low, his arms weren’t stroking right. Not only that he didn’t do the full stroke. He stopped just under the water instead of rotating all the way down through the water. A trick I learned: you thumbs should brush the outside of your thighs with each stroke. That means you are doing it right. When your arms aren’t doing the full motion, you do more damage than good and fatigue very quickly. Most of swimming is in the upper body so it’s VERY important to get that part right. Lastly, his legs were flailing around under the water. Scissor kick! Don’t just kick from the knees. Not only will it not work right and slow you down, you’re likely to hurt your hips.

Calories Burned: 321 (pathetic)

LUNCH:

Caesar Salad

Blackened Chicken Breast


Hearts of Romaine lettuce, homemade Caesar dressing, NO croutons, freshly grated Parmesan and pepper. Topped with Blackened chicken. Delicious! I love this salad. This is my new favorite salad, the second being the Cobb Salad I had last week. Michael blackened the chicken breasts in the skillet with his homemade concoction, then he baked the chicken in the oven until it reached the proper temperature. It’s absolutely perfect: not dry at all! So tasty.

Calories:   400     |    Carbs: 13g     |     Protein: 31g   |     Fiber 4g

 

DINNER:

Lamb Steak

13 Bean Soup (recipe to follow)


I marinaded the lamb in soy sauce, red wine, a splash of teriyaki, minced garlic, freshly chopped basil, sea salt, and pepper. The recipe I found also called for fresh mint–which I didn’t have, so I skipped that.


Dinner was brown and not appetizing looking at all, I know. But it was tasty. The bean soup was fantastic and I’m really happy how it turned out! The lamb steak was delicious too. It was very tender and tasty, a little on the fatty side but still great. I was kind of disappointed that we split the one lamb steak instead of each having one because my cut had the bone in it too–so less steak for me. Oh well.


I’m happy we finally tried preparing lamb at home. I don’t know why we never did. But now we can do it again and try other recipes too.

Calories:  806    |    Carbs: 66g     |     Protein: 68g   |       Fiber 15g

TOTALS FOR THE DAY:

Calories:  1,896   |    Carbs: 142g     |     Protein: 139g   |       Fiber 30g

 

QUESTION: What is your favorite recipe for preparing lamb? Would love some tips and ideas!