52 Days of Paleo – Day 4

An overcooked Egg Cup.

Someone needs to make this easier for new people...

I am experiencing low energy still. At home at five o’clock, work done for the day, sitting on the couch watching the end of Stage three of the Tour of California, I feel lethargic. Not sleepy per se, just lacking in energy. I think this is still part of the process of my body adapting to clean fuel. I hope.

The thing I’ve learned most of all about Paleo so far is that the book I’m following (Paleo in 28 by Kenzie Swanheart of makes Paleo harder than it needs to be. An example, on the first day of my 53 Days of Paleo challenge, I followed a breakfast recipe for twice-baked sweet potatoes. It took 90 minutes to make. 90 minutes! Who has that kind of time for breakfast? The second day, I took the same ingredients and the first day’s breakfast and sauteed them in a pan. It took ten minutes.

I had been looking forward to today’s breakfast and dinner recipes since I saw them in the book on Saturday. Egg cups are scrambled eggs mixed with veggies or bacon or whatever you please baked for ten minutes in a small, round casserole dish in the oven.

I picked up two souffle cups at the store yesterday (they looked closest to the amazing picture of breakfast egg cups in Swanheart’s book). I followed the directions (break an egg, mix in some spinach, scramble, bake). I added mushrooms.

The instructions say to leave them in until the egg mixture is still moist but almost cooked. I couldn’t really tell when that was exactly and waited until the center rose like a cake.

That left the whole dish dry and hard and not a great eating experience. And the whole time I’m eating this recipe I was so excited about, all I could think was that if I just popped those veggies in some oil and scrambled in the eggs, it would have made a perfect and simple breakfast.

And I have a great pan to make just such a thing.

Two years ago, I got to visit the Santini factory with a client. Santini (the Italian cycling clothing company I am a distributor for) was bringing in clients from around the world and sharing new products with them. Over two days, as a way to reinforce their brand values and imbue a bit if Italian culture, they held a number of events and experiences in the local community. My client and I had the choice of bike rides and hikes, yet since we get to ride bikes all the time (and bringing a bike from the US to Italy for a shortish VIP ride is a hassle), we both opted instead for a cooking class.

Held at the nearby Agnelli factory (Agnelli is a world-class chef-grade brand of pans and other cooking tools), the class was led by a master chef. We learned to make Mostaccioli, a local Bergamo pasta dish. At the end of the class, we were presented with a saucepan printed with our names on the side.

I keep mine in its original burlap storage bag and let no-one else in the house use it. I make as many meals as I can in it. It would have been perfect for the egg dish.

I think the book sometimes takes a simple set of ingredients and tries to make them more special than a basic omelet by adding baking cups, or double-baking potato skins, etc.

My journey to Paleo is made harder by these complications. I think it is smarter to look at the guide as just that, a guide. Not a strict plan. Sometimes, I’m willing to invest in the recipe, in experiencing the meal as presented, with all the complicated prep and cooking time it demands. Most of the time though, I think it’s better to take the ingredients and simplify them - in the Agnelli saucepan of course.

Sleep quality: 82%

Breakfast: Coffee, black, sweetened with raw honey. Egg cups (eggs, spinach, mushroom, turmeric baked in a casserole dish).

Lunch: Leftover baked chicken with roasted broccoli.

Dinner: Pork steaks, roasted sweet potatoes, pineapple slices, spinach side salad with currants, pepitas, and homemade apple cider vinaigrette.

Snacks: Banana. Almond butter. Dark chocolate squares.

Exercise: None today.

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