So today is my last day on Whole 30, a nutrition program (or a challenge) where I stayed away from grains, lentils, sugar, chemicals, and processed foods for 30 days (here is experience with on week 1, week 2, week 3). My focus was to consume mostly farm-raised meat, eggs, fresh vegetables, some fruits, and healthy fats in the form of nuts/seeds, avocados, coconut oil, olive oil. I read about it online and joined a facebook group for additional questions/support. There is a book ‘It Starts with Food’ if you are interested to read further. The general idea behind whole 30 is to change the way you think about food, change some of your habits (cravings), experience improvements on your physical, mental, and emotional health. Here are some more benefits. I did this challenge simply because I like to do challenges every now and then and to see if it will benefit my skin and over all health. Here are my final thoughts..
– Planning is the key: One of the main reasons I was able to stick to 30 days is because I planned my meals and did grocery shopping ahead of time. I talked about meal planning earlier but it’s even more important when you are on a restricted diet since you can’t fix yourself a quick sandwich or go to a drive through.
- Warm Cauliflower with Nigella Seeds (vegan, gluten free)
- Banana Almond Butter Cups (vegan, gluten free)
- Salsa Chicken Lettuce Cups (gluten free)
- Homemade Sriracha
- Vegetable Pancakes (gluten free)
- Lemon Asparagus Cauliflower ‘Rice’ (vegan, gluten free)
- And finally Easy Chicken Kebabs (scroll down for the recipe)
Easy Chicken Kebabs
1 tablespoon coriander seed
1/2 tablespoon cumin seed
1 lbs ground chicken
8 oz mushroom, washed and very finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 small piece of ginger, minced
1 red jalapeno, finely chopped ( or use green chili)
2 heaping tablespoon chopped mint
2 heaping tablespoon chopped cilantro (may use parsley)
1 tablespoon neutral oil + more for grilling
– In a small pan over medium-high heat, toast cumin and coriander seed until its fragrant and starts popping. Remove from heat and use mortal and pestle to crush them together.
– In a large bowl combine all of the above ingredients and mix them well.
– Line a large tray with parchment paper. Shape the kebab mixture into small balls and flatten them just a little bit. Arrange them on a tray and freeze it for 10-15 minutes.
– Heat a grill pan (or outdoor grill) and brush it with little oil over medium-high heat. Cook kebab for 2-3 minutes on one side, brush it then gently flip on the other side. Continue cooking until it is cooked on both sides and oil it as needed. It should take about 8-10 minutes.
-Arrange it on the platter with sliced onions, herbs such as cilantro, mint, lemon slices etc and serve it hot.
It could be eaten alone as an appetizer, over a salad, with grains, or made into a sandwich or wrap. They can be made in advance and frozen for later use or can be made and reheated the next day.
– Freezing them for 10-15 minutes helps keep them together; all four times, not even a single kebab fell apart.
– While grilling the kebab, do not press them with an spatula as it oozes all the juices out leaving your kebab dry. Let it cook slowly over medium heat.
– I highly recommend toasting and crushing the whole spices using mortal and pestle, do not grind them into a powder though.
In case you were wondering what I will break my whole30 with ? Banana bread breakfast cookies are waiting for me.
Have you done whole30? or followed any diet? I’d love to hear your thoughts.