Culinary Adventures with Laura


Two weeks ago today, I decided that since I’ve been feeling like garbage and not really sure of the reason… and since I’ve been really tired lately… and since I’ve been gaining weight no matter what I tried to do….. I would give up eating wheat.  Cold Turkey.  And see what that did.

Fourteen days later, with pretty much no wheat ingested (I had an Asian Sesame Salad at Kelsey’s and may have forgotten that chow mein noodles have wheat in them, so I didn’t think to ask to not have them on my salad until the last four bites… but oh well…), I feel so much better.  I’ve been sleeping better, I’ve been eating SO MUCH better, I’ve had more energy, and I just feel overall better.

Maybe they’re related, maybe they’re not, but another fringe benefit is that without much more added effort than I had normally been putting in, I’ve lost 5 pounds since I started.  And yesterday, two totally separate people who don’t even know each other both told me that I look like I’ve lost some weight.  Five pounds doesn’t do that, so I assume maybe there’s been some muscle built?  Who knows?  Or maybe because I felt confident about myself yesterday because I felt so good, I didn’t wear a mumu-style shirt like I have been…. (I love them, they’re these baggy chiffon shirts from Old Navy, and they look wicked with leggings and jeans and skirts and dress pants, and they’re so comfy and you feel like you’re wearing a big baggy sweatshirt, when in reality you still look classy…. but you definitely couldn’t find my waistline if I paid you when I’m wearing them).

Another result of this has been that I can’t really eat out.  My vice for years has been Subway.  Well, when you don’t eat wheat, what does one eat at Subway?  Salad?  I can make way better tasting ones at home, and not pay $9.00 for it, so no thank you.  McDonald’s breakfast has been a bit of a vice as well… but it’s not quite the same to order an Egg McMuffin with no McMuffin.  I did it once because I had nothing without wheat in it to eat for breakfast the first Monday, but I likely won’t do it again.  Why spend almost $7.00 on some hashbrowns and one egg fried and put in a box?  No thanks.  So I’ve been cooking.

Now if you know me, you know this is not something I really do.  It’s not that I’m incapable of it, I just don’t enjoy it.  And I really don’t enjoy doing it for one person.  For example, when you roast a chicken, like I did last Sunday afternoon (my house smelled amazing, by the way), you have chicken, sweet potatoes, and carrots to eat until Wednesday.  Great, if you don’t like variety.

But anyway, the reason for my post is this.  I’d like to start a tag in my blog here called Culinary Adventures, where, every time I try a recipe that works, I will post it for you.

I have one for you today, because I made these last weekend and they were unbelievable.  If you’re like me, you thought gluten free meant gross.  I assure you, there are ways around this.

Check out these Oatmeal Banana Walnut Chocolate Chip muffins with no wheat and no sugar.

I’ll link the full post here, so as to give credit where credit is due.  I found the recipe on Pinterest and was SO HAPPY that I did.

Modifications I made will be posted below.

Ingredients:
2.5 cups old fashioned oats

1 cup plain low fat greek yogurt

2 eggs

1/2 cup honey (I used an extra 1/8 cup of honey, because I like sweet things.)

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

2 TBSP ground flax seed  (I couldn’t get the flax seed to grind up, I assume you probably have to buy it that way or have a more talented food processor than I do, so I used whole flax seed)

1 tsp vanilla

2 ripe bananas

Instructions:
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray tin with non-stick cooking spray or line 12 muffin tins with silicone or foil liners. (I used foil liners, and sprayed them with cooking spray as well to be able to get the muffins out easily)
2. Place the oats in the food processor and pulse for about 10 seconds.  Add remaining ingredients to the food processor. (It took me longer than 10 seconds to get the oats ground up, but my food processor is wimpy… Also, it’s very small, so I blended the rest of the ingredients together in a mixing bowl with electric beaters)

3. Process until everything is mixed together and oats are smooth.

At this point in the process, I added milk chocolate chips and chopped walnuts.  Delish.  The chocolate chips sank to the bottom, and I don’t know why, but it was still really tasty.

4. Divide batter among cupcake liners, and bake for 18-20 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. (I should have done 15 minutes and then checked, my bottoms came out black… but live and learn!)

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