I bet you’re wondering how the whole gluten-free, sugar-free, alcohol-free, caffeine-free thing is going. (OK, you’re probably not, but indulge me.)
Well, it’s not and it is. I’d say I’ve been about as faithful to the Blood Sugar Solution as a hardcore vegetarian who still adds bacon to his veggie burger. This weekend was a bust, and while I ate really well all week, I also had a treat almost every day.
I’m still seeing benefits to it, and with such a terrible weekend (oh, the pizza, wine and ice cream!), I woke up and saw some of the repercussions. The good: Still at a weight loss, sleeping great, no PMS. The bad: My face broke out this morning.
We’re supposed to be on the sixth and final week, but we repeated week 3 because I wasn’t taking the relaxation part seriously. So, now we’re on week 5, which is focusing on living green. This I can do. I’m planning on concocting a homemade all-purpose cleaner soon.
Aside from nutrition, I’ll give an update on my race plans. On Sept. 15, you’ll catch me out at Mud Factor with a cool group of ladies. It’s nearly everybody’s first dash through obstacle course. I may be the only one on the team who isn’t totally new to it (I did the Warrior Dash last month).
Today’s Monday, though, and you’re long overdue for a Meatless Monday recipe. Here’s what I’m making a double-batch of tonight: Chickpea Romesco, a recipe I have come to love from “Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook” by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. It’s gluten-free, though with some sugar in the recipe, it’s not exactly perfect for the Blood Sugar Solution, but close enough. It’s delicious on its own, but you can serve it over brown rice or quinoa, or if you want to feel like you’re having spaghetti without the guilt, serve over spaghetti squash. It’s all good.
1/3 cup sliced almonds
1 28-oz can diced tomatoes (fire-roasted would taste good)
2 roasted red bell peppers, homemade or store-bought
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced finely
2 shallots, minced
1 red Serrano chile, seeded and minced finely
¼ cup of white wine or vegetable broth
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon dried thyme
½ teaspoon dried rosemary, crumbled
2 15-oz cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
½ teaspoon of salt, or to taste
Freshly ground pepper
Using a food processor (or immersion blender), grind the almonds into very fine, almost powdery crumbs. Empty into a small bowl and set aside.
Working in two or more batches, puree the tomatoes and roasted peppers together until smooth. Pour the tomato mixture into a large bowl and set aside.
Preheat a medium-sized heavy–bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Saute the garlic, shallots and chile in oil until the shallots turn golden, 4 to 5 minutes. Pour in the white wine and stir to dissolve any browned bits of garlic from the bottom of the pan; simmer for 1 minute. Add the tomato puree, vinegar, sugar, thyme, and rosemary. Turn heat to medium-high and bring to a near boil. Lower the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the ground almonds and stir the mixture until they are completely combined. Fold in the chickpeas and simmer, uncovered, for 20 to 25 minutes, until the sauce is slightly reduced and the chickpeas are very tender. Remove from the heat, season with salt and pepper, and allow to cool for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.