3 Weeks In

Today is the third week into my lenten fast. A few changes had to be made, i.e. the intermittent fasting until 12:30 PM on M-F. That was really messing up my digestion. So I added in a smoothie for breakfast, and only a smoothie. Other than that I’m still off of meat, except seafood, and dairy, except on Sundays (although if I’m being honest, it sometimes expands into Saturday as well). There have been a few events where I’ve been *forced* to consume liquor. One was a charity event where you pay a fixed fee for an open bar, which didn’t include beer or wine. The other, was a friend’s wedding…and, well, it was a wedding. Drinking required.

The working out has been a struggle what with daylight savings time and it being extremely dark in the mornings. When I do get up, I do some half-assed something or other, that isn’t worth getting out of bed early. So I’ve resigned to the fact that I will probably have to work out after work, and really mentally pump myself up around the last hour of work to get in a productive workout as soon as I hit the door.

Why am I confessing all of this? Well, I just think it’s better to be accountable for my “falling off the wagon,” so to say, of my fast. Plus, it’s just better to recognize that these goals are difficult to attain, hence why people set goals, and that occasionally you will do things that run contrary to achieving your goals–any goals.
quinoaburgerBut, on the plus side, I have gotten back in the kitchen to try and come up with creative ways to satisfy all my many food cravings. I pretty much keep coconut milk on deck, as well as any and every variety of legume possible.

I’ve made quinoa & black bean burgers, beet and black bean burgers; have experimented with a thai curry; and have now moved on (or rather, returned) to Brazilian cuisine. beetburgerI realize that many of my favorite foods in Brazil were seafood based, and with my long overdue trip to the International Market where I finally obtained a bottle of palm oil, I can finally get a taste of a version of the food I ate about 4.5 years ago.

Last night I finally got around to making Moqueca de camarão, which is like a shrimp stew. I hybridized about 4 different recipes, so for ease, it’s below:


  • 1 lb of raw shrimp (mine were tiny and frozen–could use prawns, or whatever)
  • 1 onion, sliced or diced (your preference)
  • 1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 2 tomatoes, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 lime
  • 1 handful of cilantro, chopped
  • 1 handful of parsley, chopped
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • +/- 2 Tbs dendê (aka palm oil)


  • Put the shrimp in a bowl, toss with salt, pepper, garlic, and the juice of 1/2 of a lime; set aside for 20 minutes
  • Heat the dendê in a large pan
  • Add the garlic and bell pepper, toss until softened
  • Add the cayenne pepper, 2 tsp of salt (I used adobo), let sit for another 2 minutes
  • Add the tomatoes, half of the cilantro and parsley, and the juice of the remaining 1/2 of the lime; let simmer until the tomatoes soften
  • Add the shrimp and toss until it starts to cook
  • Add the can of coconut milk, cover, and let it come to a boil
  • Turn off the heat, and stir in the rest of the cilantro and parsley
  • Serve with rice, salt & pepper to taste


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