Monday begins the Paleo week off in high fashion. Actually, it’s going to be starting the Paleo Phase off a day early. Considering all the gorging on junk food I’ve had (did I mention I ate a Coldstone Creamery Ice Cream for lunch) I figured it’s good to get cleaning out early. While I won’t have the luxury of being creative with my meal planning for breakfast or lunch, I do plan on spreading my wings at dinner time.
Let’s get the drudgery part of the planning out of the way. What is a good Paleo breakfast? Most of the breakfast options I’ve seen one way or another are a variation of eggs and bacon. That may be spruced up to be a frittata or a pseudo-muffin of some sort. I don’t plan on going that direction though. I basically have two potential breakfast options I’ll be doing. The first will be an egg and spinach (or kale) omelet with either a side of berries or a side of bacon (or both). The second option, especially if I’m in a rush, will be to fall back to my Virgin Diet shake. I really grew to like the flavor and I can’t beat the convenience. Technically the pea protein powder should be replaced with a more whole-foods component, but I’m not going to fall on the sword of idealism and then end up eating an Egg McMuffin or granola bar to make up for it. There are some more decadent(ish) breakfasts, like pancakes made with pumpkin puree, but I’m going to save that for a day I can afford to spend time with making a second breakfast in case they turn out poorly.
Lunch is going to be even simpler than breakfast since I won’t be cooking any of it. I have some pretty standard haunts and orders for lunch. Chipotle is a big one, but I’m going to have to ditch my usual burrito bowl for one of their salad bowls since rice is now off the table. I often get sushi for lunch as well, which is off the table now as well. I’ll have to get some “skinny rolls” which have the rice replaced with daikon radish, cucumber or something like that. I’ll have my trusty coconut aminos to power me through that since soy sauce, whether gluten free or not, is not in the cards.
Dinner is where I’m hoping to let some creativity in the food preparation department shine! Starting with the Practical Paleo dinner menu for the first week, I built up a meal plan to take me potentially into Saturday. I freely admit now that plans for Friday or Saturday evening may totally derail that plan, but I have already purchased everything in case I actually make it that far.
Monday’s dinner will be a flank steak liberally seasoned with Butt Rub Seasoning for the protein part of the meal. To go along with that I’m going to be frying some peppers and onions as well as making a salad. The salad will be mixed greens, perhaps some bitter greens mixed in as well, with some carrot and then lightly dressed with extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar and some salt, pepper, oregano, basil.
Tuesday’s dinner plan is to roast some chicken on the grill. That will probably also have some of the same seasoning, although I may instead go with an overnight marinade, especially if I end up doing chicken breasts instead of legs. To accompany those legs I will be making some sweet potato pancakes and another salad. I have some beets for later in the week. I am considering using those beet greens as a big portion of the salad along with some spinach.
Wednesday night I’m planning on breaking out some of the king crab legs I purchased at Wegmans today. The original plan was for cod or some sort of white fish, according to the book. I was going to substitute that for some salmon that I have had in my freezer for awhile. However with the huge box of king crab legs staring at me, I just had to jump on that. So I’ll take a few of those out. I’m going to pair that with some roasted butternut squash and (you guessed it) another salad.
Thursday night will be back to the meat side of things, with a cut of steak paired with a bunch of roasted root vegetables. I plan on making a pretty good size dish of these things so it will last at least into the next day. I’ll be putting together sweet potato, carrots, parsnips and daikon radish. A quick dice a good bath in some chopped garlic and olive oil with some rosemary mixed in to boot and I think I’ll have a good vegetable dish. I’ll probably have some left over butternut squash, so I’ll finish that up rather than make a salad.
Since I may be diverging from the plan, I might as well plan big for Friday night. Let’s start off with a whole chicken, slow roasted on the grill. I would usually use a beer can chicken recipe. Instead I’ll replace that with a white wine roast. I’m sure I’ll have tons of excess soda cans to pick from to hold said liquid. I’ll have a lot of the roasted root vegetables from the night before to eat so that will be the main side dish. I’ll be back to doing some salad to go along with that as well though. Sometime during the week I’m planning on making a Paleo friendly vanilla coconut ice cream. I’ll be partaking in a good helping of that for dessert.
Saturday, if things stay on schedule, I’ll be trying to prepare my first lamb roast. I have some good recipes for that from the internet and my own cookbook that I’m going to be trying. I want to pair that with a ratatouille and side salad. Depending on how ambitious I am, I may try for another Paleo-friendly dessert, but don’t hold me to that.
Sunday will be left over and planning day as yet another week of Paleo will be beginning.