My Gluten Free Story

There’s so much talk these days about going gluten-free. Seems like everyone is getting on the GF bandwagon. I personally don’t  believe it’s a fad. I think most people can benefit from eating a gluten-free diet, especially with all the highly processed grains out there now. On the other hand, eating a gluten-free cupcake isn’t necessarily healthy either. Just because something is GF doesn’t mean it’s healthy. You can still easily gain weight on a GF diet. Simply swapping out a normal piece of brand for a GF piece of bread isn’t going to get you any health gains. At the beginning of my GF journey, I thought this was the case though. I said, ” It’s GF! I can eat as much as I want! Who cares if it’s sugar filled because it’s GF!” I quickly learned that was not the right approach and since then I’ve made major diet changes. (Hello Whole30!) Now I incorporate more veggies in place of the GF substitutes. Don’t get me wrong, I still like to have cookies, ice cream, and birthday cake every now and then, but now I can make it GF and not feel terrible after eating it! 

I hope after hearing my story about going GF and all the benefits I’ve reaped from it, that you’ll consider eliminating gluten from your diet for a period of time and see how you feel. 

Press play to hear my story!

I’d love to hear your stories and comments about going GF!

Comment below and find me on Instagram @iamthefitbaker

 

Not My Bikini Body-Unmet Goals

 

Aloha!

For my 30th birthday I went to Oahu with my sisters. We had a blast! Being a Seattle girl, it’s not hard to appreciate some sunshine. In the past, I would have totally splurged and eaten anything I wanted. Hey, it’s my birthday after all! But this trip was different. I realized I REALLY have changed. The biggest change happened in my mind and how I thought about food. I told myself I could have whatever I wanted, but to make it worth it. I didn’t even feel tempted by those sugary tropical drinks or the ice cream shop with waffle cones wafting through the air. On my actual birthday all I ended up wanting was chocolate covered macadamia nuts. Crazy right? But that’s what I truly wanted and what sounded good. I didn’t put pressure on myself to have a ridiculously indulgent dessert just because it was my birthday. (Big part of this revelation came from reading “Food, Freedom, Forever“)

On the flip side, I had set a goal for myself to wear a bikini in Hawaii for my 30th birthday. I’ve had this goal for over a year and I’ve slowly been working towards it. As my birthday drew closer, I kinda figured out that I wouldn’t be wearing that bikini. I initially felt deflated. I felt like I had been working so hard for so long and had hardly made any progress. It was discouraging to say the least. To me a bikini symbolizes finally feeling comfortable with my body. Kinda like a sense of freedom. Like I have nothing to hide. Like I don’t need to figure out just the right outfit to camouflage my belly fat. So wearing a bikini would have been a big deal, but alas, it didn’t happen. 

Check out my video for how I dealt with this major letdown. 

I’d love to hear how you deal with unmet goals! How do you bounce back? Comment below and tag me in your posts on Instagram @iamthefitbaker

 

Whole30 Homemade Tostones~Plantain Chips

   For the past couple of years, I’ve been head over heels for plantains…especially in chip form. I used to eat the Trader Joe’s plantain chips but I got tired of those and just didn’t think they were as healthy as I was looking for. I saw some other Whole30 peeps on Instagram making Tostones (the Spanish name for fried plantains) and I knew I needed to try making these myself. I like how they aren’t as hard as the plantain chips you’d find in the store. They still get crispy but are thicker and stay just a bit soft on the inside. I love to dip mine in guacamole.

I’ve included the Whole30 recipe below as well as step by step photos and videos. They are a bit labor intensive, considering they are fried twice, but if you make a big batch at one time then you’re good to go for awhile.

I’d love to see what you eat  your tostones with! Tag me in your Whole30 pics! @iamthefitbaker

Whole30 Twice Fried Plantains

Ingredients

Green Plantains (find these by the bananas in your local grocery store)

Organic coconut oil

That’s it! Let’s get cooking…or should I say frying!

Make sure to get green plantains. They are firmer and will work better. Cut off both ends of the plantain. Then run your knife down the peel multiple times. Then peel the plantain. Note: this is not like peeling a banana. It will be a struggle.

Cut the plantain into rounds as shown

Click below for a quick video

How to Peel a Plantain

This is the coconut oil I use. It’s a great deal at Costco. Scoop about 1/4 cup in a skillet (preferably cast iron) and let it melt on medium high.

 Once the coconut oil has melted, place your sliced plantains in the skillet. Turn them after about 2 minutes or until they become just a touch brown and cook another 2 minutes. You just want to get them soft enough to smash easier later.

Once they have browned a bit, place them on a paper towel to cool.

Click the link below for a quick video

Browning the plantains

After the plantains have cooled, you’re going to smash them! So grab a small plate or you can use the bottom of a glass cup. Set one plantain on the cutting board and place the plate on top. Then you’re going to apply pressure and turn it to the right until it’s smashed flat. You may have to use a knife to scrap the flattened plantain off your plate. The key here is to only turn one direction. Don’t turn it back and forth or you’ll have a demolished plantain! No bueno. 🙂

Check out the link below for a quick video

Smashing Plantains

You’ve made it to the last step! Hooray! You’re about to taste the fruits of your labor!

Add the flattened plantains to the hot coconut oil and fry until browned on each side…about 1 minute each side. It depends on how crispy you want them. Obviously, cook longer if you desire a crispier chip. You may have to add coconut oil to the pan as you continue frying all the plantains. Transfer the fried plantains to a paper towel again. While still warm, salt them and squeeze some fresh lime juice on them and give ’em a good toss.

Click below for a quick video

Twice Fried Plantain

You officially made tostones! Good work! And now for the best part! Eating them! Whip up some Whole30 approved guacamole or pull out the salsa or eat them straight up…whatever floats your boat. 🙂 I think they are best served slightly warm. They will get a bit soggy in the fridge,  but just pop them in a toaster oven for a minute and they’ll crisp right up.

I hope you enjoy this recipe! Feel free to share it with your friends and family…especially those on the Whole30.

Tag me in your posts @iamthefitbaker