Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Post 35: Cowlean's Kickstart Advice - Dinners

Hi Guys,

I hope you’re all doing well, are looking forward to Christmas, and have been making the yuletide gay. This is post four of the kickstart series (links: part 0, part 1, part 2, part 3; got to do that cheesy up-sell!) of what will be a six part series ( and some umming and ahh-ing I finally decided six was the right number to cover everything a beginner needs know). Part five is going to add in a tiny bit of fasting (a really tiny amount; on the same scale as exercise), and part six will be an equally small addition of supplements to plug any nutritional gaps.

That takes up the next two weeks, with a special Cowlean Christmas post all set for Christmas Eve. In that episode, I’ll be providing some tips to get you through Christmas, but also I’ll be discussing why Christmas shouldn’t make you feel as guilty as you might think.

So together with today’s post, you actually have the full set of meals: part 3 of this series covered lunches, and way back in June I covered breakfasts (link for that one). Don’t pretend that I don’t treat you guys! It’s Christmas, and my sack of gifts is overflowing…

The instructions for this week are again, very simple. In fact, exactly the same as last week. Just include each of these three meals at one point during the week. I’ve made sure that they’re really easy to make, and ones you can safely make for other people will no objections. In most part, they’re my take on old classics.

With a few small changes, you can make any dish healthy.

In each case, I’ve included a “perfect health”/low carb (LH/LC) option which you can swap in if you want to, and remember to enjoy these with unlimited veg and healthy fats (e.g. coconut oil, grass-fed butter).

Gammon, Egg and Chips

This is an old classic and ultimately there’s nothing wrong with it. Use whatever meat you like, I find steak works pretty handily as well! ;) This meals shows, again, that with a few simple changes, you can make it healthy. In this case, all you need to do is remove the industrial oils.

Rather than deep frying the chips (hence introducing industrial oils) or using frozen ones (introducing preservatives plus industrial oils), bake them in the oven. If you want you can also let them cool which raises the resistant starch content, leading to higher fibre and extra food for healthy gut bacteria.

Use coconut oil to coat the chips for baking together with salt and pepper, and fry the gammon and eggs using grass-fed butter.

PH/LC version: upgrade the white potatoes to sweet potatoes, a cleaner carb source. Cut the sweet potatoes thinly and bake for 30 minutes for delicious, crisp chips.

Homemade curry

This is another simple classic which can be made into a delicious and healthy meal, by taking away the pre-made sauce and the gluten and grains from the naans. The simple act of cleaning up your diet to focus on whole, natural foods, is undeniably powerful. Just combine good ingredients and eat until you’re full.

You can make the sauce in one of two ways. The slow way will create an amazing flavour but hours of revisiting the pot. In the slow way: slowly caramelise the onions in some ghee, turn the heat up and seal your meat, reduce the heat, then add tomatoes, and spices such as chilli, cumin,and ginger. Add each spice, let the flavours marinate for twenty minutes, then return  to add another spice. Once all the spices are combined, pop in all the rest of your veg and prepare your rice to serve.

In the quick way, get your onions on a low heat in some butter/ghee for tens minutes, then do the same with the meat and seal it. Add tinned tomatoes and spices, let it be for twenty minutes, before adding all of your vegetables and some tomato puree to thicken the sauce.

I love making mine with tonnes of vegetables, including some parsnips and sweet potatoes to give a little bit of a sweet kick.

PH/LC: use cauliflower rice rather than white rice, which is made by simply blitzing cauliflower and heating with some fat for 4-5 minutes.

Mixed bean salad, feta, and cherry tomatoes

I love making this meal because it is simple and indulgent, and is reminiscent of a mexican burrito bowl, so it will satisfy your cravings to boot! It is very easy to make, and cheap.

Use whatever meat/veg you like, as the main filling; I like to use chicken thigh fillet because they can be cooked and shredded to add lots of juicy flavour to the dish.

The key with this meal is that you should heat the beans (use a combination of drained tinned beans or alternatively you can buy mixed bean salads which are already combined) before eating them, as it breaks down some of anti-nutrients they contain.

Just cook your meat/veg separately then combine the beans with the main filling and any other veg in a large saucepan together with copious fats to get it nice and juicy. Also make sure you include lots of delicious herbs such as fresh coriander and parsley, and serve with squeeze of fresh lime, lots of cherry tomatoes and feta cheese.

PH/LC: swap out the beans for cauliflower rice, or use any combination of chunky cut vegetables to get that “mixed salad” feel.


I hope you enjoyed these recipes/ideas and that you have fun incorporating them as part of week 4 on the Cowlean kickstart plan. I’ll see you next week for part 5.

Here’s this week’s takeaways:

  1. Incorporate these three meals once each on three separate days of the week
  2. Utilise the PH/LC versions of these meals if you like
  3. Get your family involved again, show them the recipes, and see what they might enjoy!

Until next week,

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