I was prepared for a day 3 energy slump, and the Whole 30 did not disappoint. I was really, really dragging by mid-afternoon today. I’m missing my Starbucks tea! But other than my sleepiness and whiny complaints about lack of caffeine, the food side of things is going swimmingly! Breakfast was basically the same as yesterday — eggs with green peppers & onions — but I got fancy and added some Vita Coco Coconut Milk to my scrambled eggs. Truthfully, I didn’t really notice a difference in the taste, but I felt fancy, and that’s really all that counts. And now I’m thinking I may try the coconut milk in some tea so I can add that back into my repertoire. I’m not usually a coconut gal, but when you can’t add sweetener or dairy to your tea, a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.
This whole leftovers-for-lunch thing is really working for me, too. Last night’s chicken and potatoes was still delicious (although while heating it up in the microwave at work I blew a fuse. Probably the microwave couldn’t handle the awesomeness of my culinary creation.), and I had extra pepper sauce from the chicken to add to the cabbage slaw, so it was basically a win-win.
And today I decided that dinner would be a crock pot creation, since I teach until 6:15pm on Wednesdays and I wanted to actually eat dinner before midnight. So (surprise!) I remembered to get everything in the crock pot by 11am so we would have some deliciousness to much on around 7:15. Tonight’s dinner was something I’ve never made before: Beef Brisket with Butternut Squash and Greek Salad!
I felt like a true chef this morning when I found myself searing brisket in an iron skillet at 11am. The recipe, which serves 2, called for 1.5 pounds of brisket, so I got 2 that added up to about 3 pounds to be sure we had plenty of leftovers. All it needed was some salt and pepper rub, and then went straight into the heated olive-oiled skillet for about 2 minutes on each side. Then off to the crock pot you go!
The recipe itself was quite simple: a whole onion, quartered, 8 cloves of garlic, and 5 cups of water. All straight into the pot.
I also decided to “make it a meal” as suggested by the Whole 30 recipes, and cut up a butternut squash to add. Honestly, that was the most difficult part! Those suckers are super hard to slice through. I was basically karate-chopping the thing with my knife. But all’s well that ends well! Off the cubes of squash went into the pot. Then I set it on high for 8-9 hours.
Pretty, isn’t it?! And knowing that the heavy lifting was done for the day & I would be able to come home from an exhausting day to a fully-cooked meal? Priceless. So all I had to do once I was home from work was put together the salad. Chad helped me take the brisket out of the crock pot, slice it up, and get the water, onion, & garlic mixture into the blender to make the gravy.
Again, those dang butternut squash cubes were the bane of my existence, since I had to fish them out to serve them separately. But I managed to blend up the gravy (ahem, after first over-filling the blender and splashing it all over the counter) & get it back on the stove to simmer for about 5 minutes to thicken.
Salad dressing was a snap: olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, salt, & pepper, all whipped up. And we had onion, carrots, black olives, cherry tomatoes, and green peppers to jazz up the salad. Pretty! Colorful & delicious.
The brisket ended up being totally delicious, which is not bad for my very first brisket ever. I felt like a grown up: “oh, dinner last night? I whipped up a brisket.” My mom will be so proud.
And Chad actually high-fived me after we ate, so my opinion isn’t completely biased.
And tomorrow’s culinary adventure involves me making my very first fish ever, so definitely tune in for that. I’m sure it will be… fine?