It’s another morning with Julie, as I sit at work, watching and listening to her teach Class #007 (12/10/2013), telling me how “un-heart healthy” those “healthy” oils are as it relates to our endothelium. It’s a great feeling to have the knowledge of a protective diet. Moving to a plant based lifestyle from the traditional “Standard American Diet” was that “extreme” step my doctor couldn’t fathom, but neither could his words convince me otherwise. Honestly, I believe with all my heart this is the lifestyle I want to continue to follow. As I mentioned yesterday, it brought me to a health level I had never previously experienced. Never in my wildest imagination did I think I would be running a 50-mile race! An unachievable goal that was achieved, thanks in part to taking control of my health.
Let me rewind, it’s Tuesday afternoon, extended at work for an additional four hours, with a 90-minute commute home. I think that pre-COVID, Bay Area traffic is back to normal. Failing to bring breakfast to work and only one serving of the Mix & Mac with spinach and tomato, I arrived home with hunger cravings. You know that feeling, standing in front of the refrigerator or pantry wondering what to cook or eat? That was me yesterday, but that isn’t the PD way. While not following intermittent fasting, I need to get back onto a eating regime where I don’t eat after 6/7pm. Yes, I could have easily made a salad but decided to drink a glass of water and call it an evening.
Now this isn’t how I wanted to satisfy my cravings, knowing Julie would say eat! Sadly, I was restricting myself from food that my body needed. Remember Julie talking about “SUS”? I haven’t “SUS-ed” (is that a word?) in a long time, so I had nothing prepared. Salad. Frozen or fresh veggies. Pasta. How quick and simple are each of those foods? I could have followed Jerry and consumed a bowl of oatmeal. Better yet, as Julie just reminded me in the video, eat a frosty! Yet I decided not to eat in an attempt to break out of that habit of eating later than I wanted. At some point in the future, I am sure I will return to intermittent fasting (IF) but right now, it’s about being consistent.
THE CHALLENGE OF RECIPE BUILDING
Let me quickly shift to recipe building. Before I do, all I can do is rave about the flavor of that Mix & Mac! So creamy, filling and delicious. This recipe makes is easy to mix in many different add ins. That alone should make this restart easier. I’ve got no plans menu plan the first 30 days, feel that is where I failed my last attempt in 2018. While Julie has created enough recipes to keep any PD student going, I have this fascination with a few You Tube chefs, some vegan, others not so. The most recent video comes from Gaz Oakley at Avant-Garde Vegan, who recent created a Sticky Braised Jackfruit Bao Buns. While the video left me in stiches, the bao buns looked nothing short of fantastic!
The problem I have seen with many social media vegan chefs, their dishes don’t follow the Protective Diet guidelines (can’t believe the amount of fried tofu!), but does provide inspiration to hack their recipes. I recently “veganized” Sam the Cooking Guy‘s tostada recipe. Not going to share my changes since it wasn’t PD, but a bit of trial and error and even vegan or vegetarian recipes can be transformed into one that fits the Protective Diet. I could have even made the free PD tostada recipe. No-brainer, right?
Back to my buns, well Gaz’s buns. No surprise he used an AP or plan flour and caster sugar for the bao. Searching the internet there are some whole wheat bao recipes that could be modified, using erythritol in place of sugar and whole wheat flour. for the AP. My current hang up, hoisin sauce. Nearly ever vegan hoisin recipe I’ve reviewed use peanut butter, oils, sugar (including dates, raisins and prunes) or maple syrup and molasses.
The last challenge, Gochujang, which is a Korean Red Pepper Paste. Now, I have a tube of Bibigo Gochujang, needless to say it’s not PD. But this ingredient can made and used to provide a sweet and spicy addition to MANY foods. At some point in the next few weeks I will put this recipe together and see how the PD bao buns tastes, sharing my results with you.