Days 5 – 10 (Saag Mushroom)

Dear all,

I apologize for the absence. When I started the cleanse, I did not realize how life would get so crazy. I actually sat down and looked at my calendar and thought about when the most appropriate time for a cleanse would be… and of course life went and screwed things up. But the past is in the past now! I have officially finished the cleanse and I feel great! 

The last 5 days were definitely more of a struggle for me than the first five. I felt much more low-energy and going to the gym became much more of a struggle. I also caught a slight cold, so there’s no telling whether my exhaustion was due to my cold, the cleanse, or the lemons I’ve been making lemonade out of. 

Now, let’s talk results!

Over the course of the cleanse, I lost a little less than 6 pounds, dropping from around 108 to 102 lbs. I’ve never been much for sodas or unhealthy and sugary teas, so that was never a problem for me, but I have cut down my coffee drinking to one cup a day. I find myself reaching for water much more than I used to — which is great, because that means the weight I lost was most likely not water weight! Overall, I noticed that I suffered from fewer headaches than usual… which really is a huge plus for me. My goal now is to maintain my current weight by eating more normally (hello, eggs! I’ve missed your presence in my life…) and continuing my gym-going! This means Meatless Mondays and 6 to 8 oz of meat or tofu on other days. I’m excited! I hope to extend my healthy eating habits for as long as possible (BUT I LOVE FOOD!) so we will see how that goes.

 

On day 7 I was so hungry and I missed warm, cooked, and satisfying food a lot. After looking at the list of foods I was allowed to eat for a while, I realized something awesome: I can have Saag! 

After researching for a bit, I decided to follow this recipe from edible garden. Her recipe is so simple to follow and so easy. Since I can’t have paneer, I substituted with Mushrooms and opted out of all the cream/butter options. 

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I know it might not look super appetizing, but I love Indian food. This is a curry made primarily with spinach. It really is quite delicious! Image

Here is a blend of cumin powder, coriander powder, garam masala, turmeric powder, ginger powder, garlic powder, and red chili powder. It just looks so bright and beautiful! and the apartment smelled wonderful for the rest of the weekend. I know I’m supposed to use freshly ground herbs and spices and it makes a huge difference, but I didn’t have most of the spices needed… so I cheated and used the pre-ground spices. It was still delicious!

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Minced ginger, garlic, and tomato paste!

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Almost finished product… yummy! I can’t even tell you how good it smelled. It was hard to resist excessive tasting.

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Add in mushrooms, close the lid, simmer, and serve. 

It was so delicious! The best part is that it was that Ken could eat it too, even on keto! I think the most challenging part about the cleanse for me was that it was hard to find common ground… My diet consisted of mostly fruits and veggies, and his was mostly meats, protein, and very limited veggies (basically mushroom, broccoli, and leafy greens). Absolutely no fruits (too much sugar, too many carbs!) Now that I am finished with my cleanse, I am super excited to remake this with the cream and the yogurt. I think it will prove to be a much more rounded! 

 

Enjoy! 

Keto Cheesecake

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned that Kenneth is a health nut. Every once in a while he likes to go on a ketogenic diet. For those of you who don’t know what that means, keto is basically a super low carbohydrate diet. I love carbs. I love them so, so, very much. Needless to say, I really hate it when Kenneth goes on this diet. =P Anyway, this is from a while ago, but this is a cheesecake that is appropriate for people who are looking for a low carb dessert!

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The crust is made of only almonds, butter, and a little bit of cinnamon. If you have a food processor, you can throw your almonds in and pulse until all the ingredients are combined and stick together. I don’t have one, so I had to do it manually. 

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This is whipped cream that is sweetened with stevia. It is hard to find whipped cream that is not pre-sweetened, so it is probably best to whip up some of your own! It only takes a few minutes.

 

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I have a bad habit of cooking without following very strict recipes (unless it is something super finicky, like macarons) so I can’t exactly say what I did to make this, but since there are only a few ingredients it’s really not difficult. Just make sure to taste what you’re making while you’re making it!

For the crust:

1/4 c butter
1 1/2 c almond slices or 1 c almond meal
2-3 drops stevia
dash of cinnamon

combine almond meal, butter, cinnamon, and stevia in a food processor (or by hand). Press the mixture into the bottom of the pan and bake at 375 F for about 5 minutes. Take the crust out and turn the oven up to 400 F

For the filling:

3 packages of cream cheese
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
a little bit lemon/lime juice
4 or 5 drops of stevia

Start by creaming the cream cheese! Then combine all the other ingredients, making sure to incorporate them fully without over beating. Too many bubbles in the mixture can cause your cake to crack! Pour the mixture into the crust then put it in the oven! Turn the oven down to 200F and bake until the filling is firm, but the middle still jiggles a little (about 80 min in my oven). 

If you don’t want your cake to crumble when you cut it (like mine did), wait until the cake is completely set and cooled before cutting it… I was too impatient! 

Between you and me, I prefer normal cheesecake with all the carbs in it… the graham cracker crust and the real sugar can never be replaced. However, if you or anyone else in your life is on a low carb diet, this might be the perfect treat!