Day 7: Cooking with steam, and in desperate need of veggie recipes.

Steam is good. But first…

Sorry about the mild hiatus. Life outside of this blog has been a little nuts. Largely nuts in a good way, but nuts nonetheless.

So, as promised, a quick recount of the steam cooker in action. Let me just say this: This thing is remarkably easy to use and clean. Here’s the thing in action with enough greens for about three meals and enough protein for four (well, according to the diet plan, anyway. Certainly not enough by my old standards of eating. But then again, it has been working… sigh.):

Here’s the first layer of the steamer, filled to the brim with yummy (I’m being sarcastic) asparagus, lightly (ever so painfully lightly) seasoned with a few spices.

Steamer with asparagus

Steamer with asparagus and tier 2

Next, half a dozen eggs standing in grooves and several fillets of tilapia fish (again, every so painfully, painfully slightly seasoned.

Steamer with eggs and tilapia

All told, it took the steamer about 22 minutes to cook it all. During this time, I just left the thing alone so that I could cook a whole bunch of other veggies and tiny, tiny, agonizingly tiny portions of chicken in the oven and in stir frys.

In total, I managed to shave a half hour off the previous week. Made 15 meals in two hours. Hooray for time savings!

Yay…

Dissatisfaction is the mother of experimentation.

I looked at the food in front of me. Yes, I’d added steaming to the repertoire. And yes, I’d slightly changed up the mix of ingredients.

But man, the meals looked essentially identical to what I made last week (hence, me not bothering with showing a photo).

I can’t remember the last time home-cooked food actually looked genuinely unappealing. It made me stop and think. Really take stock of what had just happened here. The thing is, normally, when I cook, even when I know I’ve blundered, I’m still excited to try what I’ve done. This time around? There was no spark of interest.

I’d managed to make my own food boring. That is not a good sign.

Of course, it wasn’t hard to piece together why. I’d just spent the whole first week of this diet eating essentially the “not fun” calories, as Hugh Jackman would put it. The only ray of light in the previous seven days of dismal eating were the cheat meals.

That state of being was going to make continuing that much harder. And if I knew myself, this longing for cheat meals and apathy/contempt for the other 86% of my meals was going to wreck my long-term chances of making this healthy eating a permanent lifestyle change.

So, what to do?

Well, I looked long and hard at my allowable ingredients. And it occurred to me that I’d better get real good and real varied at cooking veggies, and fast. Because lordy, vegetables were the only ingredient category that I could actually say to be permitted to eat in “abundance”.

Man, even the vegetable quantity has to be qualified with air quotes. That’s just… sad.

Still though. I’m determined to not only see this meal plan and weight loss through, but to also make lifelong changes to my eating habits. And so, the next time I cook, it’ll be with new recipes for veggies. Hoping to discover some interesting things in week 2!

Tomorrow: Pictorial evidence of the first week’s results (hint: My abs begin to show)!

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