I wish I had some complaint or issue to make for a snarky or dramatic essay today, but the fact is this whole Paleo lifestyle seems to be working for me. I can honestly say I am feeling great this week. I am nourished. I am full. My mind is clear. (So is my skin!) I have patience with my kids. I have stamina for my workouts, my job, my family time, and even the dishes.
Here is the fuel of the day:
Breakfast- Every last drop of the remaining Paleo Breakfast Porridge
Lunch- Rubio’s Balsamic and Roasted Veggie Salad
This took just a little forethought and research of the online menu to finagle a Paleo-friendly option for myself when I walked up to the counter to order. I hate making a scene or holding up the line for a laundry list of questions. I kept the dietary restrictions to myself and also spared the gal at the cash register from having to go on some wild goose chase to find out if the dressing contained sugar. I already knew from menu research that the chicken at Rubio’s is not gluten free, and I knew this salad defaults to being served with corn and topped with a little sprinkling of cheese. So, I just said I’d like the balsamic and roasted veggie salad with grilled mahi instead of the chicken, no corn, no cheese, dressing on the side (which I didn’t use, I tossed on salsa instead.) Easy. No fuss. A nice option in a pinch. I forgot to take a picture (maybe I subconsciously didn’t want to take a picture and embarrass my company?) but you can get the idea from the picture in the link.
Post-WOD: I went from work to CrossFit and then to pick up my son and then run an errand. I actually missed my hemp smoothie. I had stashed an apple in the car in the morning, and I ate it in the car shortly after leaving CrossFit, but I wished I had some protein to go with it. Bummer. Now I will remember to stick an AMRAP bar and a packet of almond butter in my gym bag.
Dinner- Sticky Thai Chicken Wings
How Wings Came to Be Dinner Tonight:
Wings are not something I normally cook. What the How Sweet Eats blogger said about wings is true. Wings seem to cost a lot of time and effort for little payout. However, I still had a stash of wings in the freezer leftover from when my husband made hot wings over Daytona weekend. I noticed a friend had pinned this recipe for the Sticky Thai Chicken Wings and it caught my eye and my taste buds. I do love Thai flavors, and although I noticed the recipe called for quite a few non-Paleo items, I was confident I could easily swap them for Paleo items and still have those Thai flavors come through. I re-pinned the recipe to my dinner idea board thinking that I’d try it at some point down the road. Over the weekend when I was menu planning, my initial plan for today had been to make a Chinese-inspired orange chicken recipe. This plan was thwarted when I was shocked and dismayed to discover my grocery store was completely void of chicken thighs. There were no bone-in thighs, no thigh fillets, neither organic nor conventional. There were just no chicken thighs. It was weird. That’s when this Thai wing recipe idea came into play for dinner this week.
Original Version that contains soy, peanuts, rice vinegar, and sugar:
1/3 cup sambal oelek plus 2 tablespoons honey for the sweet chili sauce
1/4 cup cider vinegar for the rice vinegar
3 Tbsp coconut sugar for the brown sugar
1 Tbsp almond butter for the peanut butter
1 Tbsp coconut aminos for the soy sauce
1/4 cup sesame seeds for the chopped peanuts
Improvements in execution:
Sear wings in coconut oil instead of olive oil for cooking effectively over higher heat.
Broil the wings for 3 minutes after the stated baking time.
Complaints for complaint’s sake:
This was not a one-dish meal! What chaos I made in the kitchen! There was the bowl for the sauce, the various measuring cups, measuring spoons and whisk for the sauce ingredients. There was a spoon to dish out the chili sauce, the grater for the ginger, the juicer for the lime, the storage container for the unused coconut milk. Then, there was a spoon to dish out the coconut oil to heat up in the big cast iron skillet. (I also had a small cast iron skillet going with some wings in a soy sauce/honey/vinegar sauce for the kids, but I won’t hold that extra dish against anyone.) I used my splatter screen over the top of the skillet. There was one set of tongs to turn the wings that got icky with raw-ish wing skin slime. There was a plate to hold the partially-seared wings that got goobered with pink chicken juice. There was a knife and cutting board for the onions and cilantro. There was a strainer to rinse the cilantro. There was a dish for heating the broccoli. There was the platter and a second set of tongs to transfer the broccoli and the cooked wings to a platter, which I wanted to use so I could pour the sauce over the broccoli without getting broccoli floret confetti all over the chicken. This dish list is exhausting to simply write about, let alone to wash! And washing that darn skillet was like a mini strength WOD in itself!
Ironically, today’s CrossFit WOD required us to use a heavy dumbbell in a farmer carry to tone and prepare the core for functional movement. By performing full body, naturally occurring movements in a training setting, we are more prepared for everyday life. Boom! A key pillar of CrossFit, functional movement, is revealed through a clean skillet right in my kitchen. Who knew that sweating it out and feeling the burn in my CrossFit training would prime me to be a more efficient and capable skillet washer?!?!
Don’t let my rant on dishes or the long list of ingredients discourage you from making this recipe. It was quite tasty! Nutty, spicy, and fragrant, with a punch from the lime and cilantro the sauce was perfectly balanced with a hint of sweetness. It was great on the wings, but really, you could bake or grill plain thighs (if you had them!) or any cut of chicken. Then, measure the sauce ingredients directly into a pan on the stove, reduce it, and just pour it on whatever chicken and veggies you cook. I think it might be simpler that way, although you might miss toning up your shoulders and core on that bulky skillet!