In with 2013, out with meat.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

I know, I know. It has been forever since I have updated this blog. Life has gotten a bit hectic since last October. I ran my first marathon, had a few family health scares, and took on a new position at work. With 2013 now upon us and the craziness seeming to have calmed down slightly, I'm prepared to at least offer up some of my schedule to updating this blog more than I have been the last few months.

How are those New Year's Resolutions going for you? For 2013, I decided to start crossing things off my life bucket list. For the month of January, my friend Katie and I challeneged each other to a month on a vegan diet. Vegan, not to be mistaken with vegetarian, means nothing from animals. No meat, no eggs, no milk, no cheese, no honey, no butter, etc. If an animal made it, we couldn't have it.

I have read over and over again the benefits of a vegan diet. One of the most convincing books highlighting the benefits of a vegan diet was the Thrive Diet written by Canadian Ironman athlete Brendan Brazier.

To ring in the new year, I had taken a trip up to Niagara Falls with my friends Melissa and Jen. This made waking up on January 1st, and only being able to eat a vegan breakfast especially challenging. We went to the IHOP (International House of Pancakes) in the hotel's lobby. I have never eaten at an IHOP, and my first visit I couldn't even have about 98% of there menu. I ended up ordering the disappointing (and expensive) bowl of fruit.

Despite this disappointing breakfast, the challenge allowed me to gain a bigger appreciation for the food I consume as well as try recipe alternatives I would not otherwise try. It also forced me to invest in a food processor which made making hummus and babaganoush all that much easier :)

Lunches and dinners were quite easy to make vegan, but breakfasts were definitely the most challenging. There is simply no replacement for an eggs benedict but there IS a pretty impressive replacement for pancakes.

Check out this gluten free, sugar free, dairy free pancake recipe:

1 cup of ground oats (to the point of it almost becoming a flour, I just put 1 cup in a food processor)
1 really ripe banana
some almond milk
cinnamon (optional)

You definitely need a food processor or a really decent blender to make this pancake batter. Add the banana to your food processor and mix until it is liquid in texture. Then add your ground oats until you have a thick dough. Add your almond milk until you get a smooth pancake batter-like consistency. Mix in some cinnamon to add a spicy taste and for the added health benefits.

Thats it, DONE. Now just pour them into a frying pan with some vegetable oil (or raw virgin coconut oil) and when the batter starts to bubble its time to flip your pancake.

Let me know how it goes.

For now, I have returned to a mostly vegetarian diet with the occasional meat but am ready to do another vegan challenge when our local farmers markets kick off again in the spring.



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