Sunday, May 20, 2012

Meat & Sweet Potato Casserole (Whole30 Day 2)

So today I experienced the infamous Whole30 headache. I naively thought that maybe I wouldn't feel very negative side effects of the program, considering I *never* eat gluten and really only have the occasional bit of good quality dairy. I can tell what I'm hurting over is the lack of sugar. The little hits of stevia, palm sugar, honey and maple syrup I usually get during the day apparently truly add up!

When I told the caveman I had a headache, he was concerned that this whole Whole30 idea wasn't healthy. I don't think he's a fan or believer in the notion of detoxing, nor does he want to live with someone who might potentially be a crab while experiencing it. I'm actually not bothered by feeling a bit yucky, as it only inspires me to stick with it and face how much of a sugar junkie I really am.

Today's menu:
breakfast - pumpkin breakfast porridge (made with 2 tbs. ground flax in lieu of almond meal & coconut milk)
lunch - ate with kids at Whole Foods: salad with salmon, chicken, egg, spinach, veggies, olives, a little guac
snack - 3 pieces of celery with a little almond butter
dinner - turkey & sweet potato casserole

My thoughts:
I intentionally tried to rely less on nuts today, having only the little bit of nut butter in the afternoon. As mentioned, definitely had a headache that kicked in at about 10am and is still hanging on.

When I planned our dinner tonight, I wanted to make something that would yield many servings, thus be on hand in the fridge for a quick breakfast or lunch. And while it was 80 and sunny here today, I actually pulled out the crock pot in order to free me up to enjoy it with my kids! A crock pot casserole with sweet potato and meat in summery weather?! Why not, right? ;)

The original recipe for this "hungry man" sweet potato casserole intrigued me based on its inclusion of egg, meat and sweet potato. It seemed simple and very kid-friendly. I jazzed it up a little, since I thought as written it seemed to have the potential to be a bit bland.

The results weren't epic, but certainly solid enough to share. I drizzled a little Whole30-compliant hot sauce on mine, so perhaps next time I'd be a bit more aggressive with the seasoning. I would also suggest using more bacon, as the flavor didn't really come out as much as I had hoped. Even as made, though, both of my kids cleaned their plate and I am pleased at the prospect of tomorrow's leftovers...

Meat & Sweet Potato Casserole
adapted from Paleo Pot

1 lb. ground turkey
12 oz. garlic & herb chicken sausage (no nitrites/sugar added)
1/2 lb. bacon (next time I would go with 3/4 lb.), chopped
8 eggs
3 medium sweet potatoes, peeled
2 large onions, diced
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. oregano
2 tsp. paprika
salt & pepper
8 eggs

Grease crock pot with coconut oil. Pierce sweet potatoes a couple of times with a fork, and cook for 2 minutes in microwave. Once cool enough to handle, thinly slice.

Cook bacon in a large skillet; set aside once crisp. Add onions, ground meat and sausage to skillet. Break up meat with a wooden spoon and cook until no longer pink. Season to taste.

Whip up eggs in a blender. Season with salt, pepper and a little paprika (if desired). Make one layer of sweet potatoes on bottom of crock pot. Top with a layer of meat mixture, then bacon. Repeat layers until you run out. Pour eggs over the top.

Cook on low for 6 hours. Allow to cool either in pot or place in refrigerator to speed things up. Dish will set and then be able to slice.

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