A bit of a mash-up today….who likes food? who likes books? Who likes books about food? Yay!
My husband’s cousin Taz is a trainer in NYC, and asked for guinea pigs to beta test his eating and exercise program for eight weeks in a virtual group. Long story short, I’m at the end of week 4, have started running again, got oriented to my local Y’s weight room and have totally flipped my eating habits. That was a challenge, because I’m a long-time yo-yo dieter (maybe just yo) and stress eater still trying to lose some baby weight. On this program, rather than counting calories, I’m trying to hit macro guidelines – consume so many grams of fat, fiber, carbs and proteins – and tracking what we eat on My Fitness Pal, a free food maintenance app I’d never heard of a month ago.
When Taz has described his program, he’s said “clean eating” or “flexible dieting” with hints of “paleo eating” so, being the good librarian research junkie that I am, I put down my whoopie pie and headed off to the stacks to read up on some of these new vocab words. That’s how I found this gem, Well Fed: Paleo Recipes For People Who Love to Eat by Melissa Joulwan. It’s by far the most attainable cookbook yet that I’ve read. Joulwan is not a celebrity chef; rather, she’s a real world cook who created these recipes while working with Dallas and Melissa Hartwig, founders of Whole9. My biggest food challenge (after dealing with the keto-flu) has been trying to hit my protein macros without getting ridiculously bored by eating so many grams of plain tuna day in or day out. My first week I had a terrible day of choking down half a can of refried beans in desperation and confusion…oh…no…I’ll never have to go back to that!
A few tidbits that I am eager to try from Well Fed: Pad Thai (no, those are not noodles, but a very thin scrambled egg, cut into noodle-width strips)…Chocolate Chili…Fried Apples with Bacon and Pecans… Joulwan includes grocery lists for stocking your pantry with seasonings and paleo-friendly substitutes and guidelines about doing some cooking prep before the week actually starts and your life gets busy with kids, work, after school activities, etc., so that you don’t get sidetracked from your goal of cooking healthy, yummy food. She unpacks the terms and the paleo-theory, but writes that her “mission is to inspire you with stories and tempt you with recipes that will make you want to smash in your face with joy.” Who doesn’t want to experience that level of joy??
For more on Melissa check out her blog The Clothes Make The Girl, another mash up of food, clothes and…roller derbys…(she says it was in a previous life…but she’s working on moving her blog to the more appropriately titled Melissa Joulwan’s Well Fed.)