Recipe Swap – Chicken Pad Thai

I’ve been branching out and trying new recipes that I’ve never cooked before.  I’ve heard so many good things about Thai food, but have yet to try it.  I saw an easy recipe that I thought might be something I’d enjoy.  I decided against purchasing a ready made Thai sauce as I was unable to pronounce many of the ingredients listed on the label.  I used a recipe for homemade Thai sauce found below.  I did not include noodles, but I’m sure you could.  The recipe was super easy to follow and quick!  The whole process took about 30 minutes.  It will be perfect for a work night stir fry and no I don’t have a fancy wok – yet.  The taste of this was delicious, but it was a bit hot which I love.  I’m thinking the heat came from the serrano pepper and not the sauce, so go easy on that if you prefer it milder.

Pad Thai Sauce:

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp coconut yogurt
  • 3 tbsp. ketchup
  • 1 tbsp. coconut aminos (healthier alternative to soy sauce)
  • 1 tbsp. raw honey
  • 1 tsp. organic hoisin sauce
  • 1⁄4 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1⁄2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1⁄2 tsp. organic ginger (I used minced ginger in jar)
  • 1⁄2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1⁄2 tsp. organic cilantro
  • 1⁄2 tsp.  no-salt seasoning

Directions:

1. In a bowl combine all ingredients and set aside until needed for your stir fry.   Copyright © 2016 Danette May and Mindful Health, LLC

Chicken Stir-Fry:

Ingredients:

  • 4-6 oz. chicken, cubed
  • 1 small serrano pepper, minced
  • 2 tbsp. Pad Thai sauce
  • 1 cubed organic zucchini
  • 1 chopped organic red bell pepper

Directions:

  1. In pan, add 1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil, zucchini, red bell pepper, chicken and minced Serrano pepper. Cook until chicken browns and is fully cooked. (I actually had leftover grilled chicken that I cubed so it was done real fast.  I cooked the vegetables for a bit first, then added the cooked, cubed chicken to warm.)
  2. Add pad thai sauce.
  3. Stir and warm.

Copyright © 2016 Danette May and Mindful Health, LLC

This was a meal by itself, no sides required but you could make a nice garden salad with it.  Be sure you have something to put out the fire in your mouth.  I drank ginger kombucha.

If you try this recipe, please let me know how you liked it.  It was part of a 30 day meal program I participated in recently with Danette May.

Some ingredients needed:

Nutrifera Organic Coconut Coconut Aminos 12.7 fl oz (375 ml)

Lee Kum Kee Hoisin Sauce, 20 oz

 

NoSalt Original Sodium-Free Salt Alternative 11 Ounce (Pack of 2)

 

 

Recipe Swaps

Coffee, the favorite drink of many.  Some drink more than three cups of coffee per day. Many never stop to think about the chemicals, pesticides or other issues with consuming large amounts of coffee.  The debate over coffee’s benefits are conflicting at best.  Research shows it is beneficial to drink, but there are also studies that show it can be detrimental.  For those reasons, I chose to spend some time revamping my daily coffee fix to ensure I am getting the most out of it.

Last year, there was a disturbing video on Facebook showing a little thought of issue with using a Keurig coffee maker.  As I watched this video, I vowed to stop using my Keurig immediately.  This machine, found in most homes and offices, has been shown to create mold.  It makes perfect sense that this could happen as water just sits inside of the machine’s inner mechanisms.  This dark environment is ripe for breeding mold.  Additionally, the fact that this machine and the pods used cause damage to our planet are not lost on me either on this Earth Day.  My husband and I when we used the Keurig always used the reusable attachment and did not purchase pods.  It was not only better for our environment, but more cost effective.

Aside from mold, coffee is a crop that is known to be heavily sprayed with pesticides.  Most people don’t stop to think about this when they are sipping up to six cups a day.  My husband drinks 5 cups of coffee per day.  If we didn’t purchase organic coffee, his exposure to pesticides would be extremely high.  Though it may be more expensive to purchase organic coffee beans, I am asking today that you think about the long term effects of drinking cups of chemical laden coffee.

Finally, most people use coffee creamers in their daily coffee.  I was a huge fan of french vanilla flavored creamer and thought nothing of adding it to my cup to make it light and sweet.  Others use artificial sweeteners to avoid adding calories to their morning cup.  Research has strongly linked these sweeteners to autoimmune diseases, as well as cancer.

With all these dangers lurking,  you begin to wonder if your daily cup of coffee is even worth drinking.  Then you read that coffee has many benefits to your health, plus you just plain love it.  The simple solution here is to do a recipe swap and upgrade your coffee drink.

Here is how I updated my coffee routine to ensure I was getting the benefits of drinking coffee while limiting the dangers.

Change Your Pot

I stopped using the Keurig after watching the mold video.  I definitely don’t want coffee laced with mold.  Honestly, I was so grossed out I don’t think I’ll ever use one again.  I immediately pulled out my old Faberware pot given to me 30 years ago when I got married.   When it finally died a few months later and I began looking for a replacement.  The newer Faberware pots did not have great reviews, so I decided not to spend the extra money to purchase one.  I purchased a Presto pot and absolutely love it.

An added benefit to percolator coffee, aside from the fact that it’s a hearty cup, is that it is hot.  I never felt the drip coffee pots, or Keurig made a hot enough cup.  I often put it in the microwave for 30 seconds just to heat and you know how I feel about using the microwave.  Here is the actual pot we purchased.  We also bought one for all our family members over the past year in hopes they’d make the change.  Not everyone has joined us on this journey, but we tried.

  Presto 02811 12-Cup Stainless Steel Coffee Maker

My son purchased a French Press for his girlfriend. This is another great option for a healthier cup of coffee. This is a great option if you don’t drink a lot of coffee in one sitting. It wouldn’t be a good choice when you have a lot of company. Here’s the French Press I liked.

French Press Coffee & Tea Maker Complete Bundle | 34 Oz | Best Coffee Press Pot with Stainless Steel & Double German Glass

 

Change Your Coffee

I only purchase organic coffee at this point.  My husband occasionally picks up coffee on sale which is not organic.  I will drink it, but really try to limit my exposure to pesticides through coffee consumption.  If you order coffee at Starbucks they have organic options.  I’m betting you can request this when you go in for a cup as they do sell organic coffee beans.   I’ve tried many different brands and have settled on one of these two options.  Both are available through subscribe and save for further discounts.

Cafe Don Pablo Gourmet Coffee Medium-Dark Roast Whole Bean, Subtle Earth Organic, 2 Pound

I prefer to purchase whole beans for the freshest cup. I grind the beans on a weekly basis.

Bulletproof Whole Bean Coffee 12 oz.

This coffee is slightly more expensive so I only get one bag per month on subscription and fill in with the other less expensive option in between.

Change Your Recipe

I stopped using flavored creamers completely and will not use artificial sweeteners to replace it.  I’ve written and shared about my switch to drinking superfood coffee.  I only drink one cup per day and it’s very satisfying and has been said to improve your health.  When intermittently fasting, this coffee, with its healthy fats is very satiating and provides a nice energy boost.  Here is my recipe for coffee (based on bullet coffee):

Ingredients 

  1. 1 cup brewed hot coffee
  2. 2 tbs collagen
  3. 1 tsp ghee (or Kerry gold unsalted butter)
  4. 1/2 tsp organic raw honey (optional)
  5. 5 drops of liquid stevia
  6. dash cayenne pepper, turmeric, cinnamon, vanilla extract
  7. 1/2 tsp raw cacao
  8. 1 tbs brain octane oil (or coconut oil)

Directions

Place all ingredients in blender.  Blend (hold the cover) until smooth for a refreshingly delicious frothy cup of coffee.

I played with this recipe for a bit until I got it the way I liked it.  The first day I wasn’t sure about this whole concept, but gave it a week.  I love it so much now that I can’t drink a regular cup anymore.

If you are a big coffee drinker, I hope you’ll spend some time reflecting and exploring.  Read up on healthier options for your daily cup.  If you try this recipe, I’d love to hear your thoughts.  Here’s the link to the collagen I use and the brain octane oil in the event you’d like to give those a try.

Bulletproof Upgraded Collagen Protein – Net Wt. 16 oz

Bulletproof Brain Octane Oil – 16 oz.

Snap Out of It

Well this has been a rough week for me when it comes to healthy eating.  My birthday was Wednesday so there was some eating of cookies and cake during the day at work, followed by dinner out and some wine.  Then Thursday was a late night at work so we ordered dinner in – Chinese food.  Friday was a night out for dinner at a yearly PTA function which involved more wine and restaurant food.  While I didn’t over eat at any of these events, my body is just not used to eating in this manner anymore.   I’m feeling lousy because my eating routine is totally off kilter.  I’ve been eating out, not home cooked, so I feel sluggish and tired.  I feel like I’m full of salt, chemicals and wine.  I need to snap out of this and get back on track, but I’m not feeling motivated right now to even move.  My bed is so comfy and cozy and it’s cold and dark outside right now.  I have a scheduled slow, long run today and I’ve yet to move.  I feel like slapping myself and yelling, snap out of it girl.

I think I need to do some detoxing this week to get myself clean and restart my mojo.  It’s so amazing how much difference a week of unhealthy choices can make on my overall feeling of health.  I’m tired, bloated and totally lacking motivation.  I feel myself struggling hard to get back on track.  I know how easy it would be to just say forget it and continue on this path, but I just can’t let myself do it.  I have got to get myself back on track and quickly.  It seems to take me six months to lose 10 pounds, but I can put them back on in less than two weeks.  Funny how life works sometimes, right.

I’m not a fan of pills and drinking powdered shakes when detoxing.  I am a firm believer in nutrition and using the power found in food itself to get myself back on track.  I am going to pull out a 10 day green smoothie cleanse I used a few months back and give that another round.  Yes, this plan does involve drinking smoothies, but they are filled with delicious vegetables and super foods, not powders and expensive products.

10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse

This cleanse is super easy to follow.  I do the modified version which involves drinking two green smoothies a day (breakfast & lunch) followed by a healthy dinner.  There are options in the book for the modified version, as well as the full version.  The full version involves drinking three smoothies and eating healthy snacks and drinking tea.  I like to eat food and the thought of ten days without does not appeal to me.  Doing the modified version and substituting breakfast and lunch are super easy for me because then I don’t have to worry about packing lunch.  The author also hosts a free Facebook group, so you can go on and network with other people doing the cleanse. This book provides shopping lists, recipes, and detailed instructions for the 10-day cleanse, along with suggestions for getting the best results. It also offers advice on how to continue to lose weight and maintain good health afterwards. Easy and far less money than purchasing a program!  Many programs will cost $200 or more to get started.  This book is under $10.  You know I’m going to say it, win – win.

This is just the jumpstart I need right now! How about you?  Are you ready to do some internal cleansing?  Do you want to jumpstart your spring healthy eating and just plain feel better?  Then join me in doing the 10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse!  I’m heading out to do my shopping after my run.  I’m feeling better already and can’t wait to get some healthy food coursing through my body!  If you are joining me, leave a comment below.  I’d love to exchange recipes and good health with you.