Friday, August 2, 2013

Slim Down Menu Post

Hello! I must say, this summer has been one of the best despite some of the life hurdles that got in the way late last month. Good news, it's a new month! A new month packed with activity which is the perfect opportunity to clean up the eats around the Nickel kitchen so we have the energy to endure the action. Really I don't indulge too much, but there have been some slip ups. Even with trying my best to keep gluten out of the picture. I haven't been eating bagels or loaves of wheat bread, but a good example of not being as cautious happened last night. I was out with some dear friends and we ordered a round of happy hour appetizers. Most of those apps would have been what you would think were gluten free, but I neglected to care about all the gluten contamination that occurs when one dines out. Last night I suffered one of many nights I've experienced this summer with the classic tummy cramps and frequent trips to the restroom in the middle of the night. My belly looks a bit swollen:( I've also broken out in a little bit of a rash on the back of my arms from prior incidents which hasn't happened in almost 2 years. This reminds me it is now time to get back to eating lean, clean, and trying my best to avoid gluten contamination.

What does clean and lean look like? How am I avoiding gluten contamination? Lean and clean just means upping the veg and cutting out the mass quantities of carbs, cheese, and sugar I've been indulging in due to stupid stress. Trust me, there is a little wiggle room for cheese! I could never cut out cheese. There will just be less of it. I also plan on adding yoga back into my weekly workout regime to curb daily stress. To avoid gluten contamination, I need to be prepared by packing lunches, snacks, and eating out less. But not to totally isolate myself from the social joys of dining in a restaurant, I need to be more cautious about what I order, where I eat, and voice my issues to serving staff.

This week's menu is packed with veg and summer salads. To save a little time, I plan to marinate and grill up some extra chicken breasts which will serve double duty for lunchtime salads and another mid-week meal. Some meals you may recognize from earlier posts. I'm planning to revamp them into new, lighter favorites. Join me in my quest this week! You won't be disappointed!

Sunday 8/4          Chicken, Berry, and Quinoa Salad with Light Balsamic Vinaigrette

Monday 8/5         Roasted Tomato & Garlic Zucchini Noodles with Steamed Green Beans

Tuesday 8/6         Leftovers

Wednesday 8/7    Open Face Club Sammies with Veggie Sticks and Hummus

Thursday 8/8        Leftovers

Friday 8/9 or        Salmon Caesar Salad with Garlic Cauliflower Sticks
Saturday 8/10  

Here is what you will need:

2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I plan on buying bulk portions at Costco that are already portioned                                                               into 4 oz. pieces. If you are doing this, you will need 4-6 pieces)
1/2 lb. salmon (Again, I am using bulk portions from Costco. This will be about 2 pieces of salmon)
1 package center cut bacon
1 bunch Italian flat leaf parsley
1 bunch basil (I will use the bunch from my herb garden)
1 bunch mint (Again more from my herb garden)
1 package romaine lettuce (I plan to get the three pack with three heads of romaine, wash and cut my own)
1 container strawberries
1 container blueberries
2-3 lemons
1 avocado
1 red onion
1 bulb garlic
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
2 roma tomatoes
1 red pepper
1 package baby carrots
1 bunch celery
2 large zucchini
1 head cauliflower
1 container prepared hummus
1 loaf gluten-free whole grain bread
1 box quinoa
1 container Parmesan cheese
1 bag shredded 2% mozzarella cheese
1 container liquid egg whites
1 container nonfat Greek yogurt
1 bag frozen green beans

Pantry items you will need:

Extra virgin olive oil
Balsamic vinegar
White wine vinegar
Dijon mustard
Herbs de Provence
Salt and Pepper

I hope you all have a lovely weekend!

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