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Asian Beef Stir Fry

Today is a pretty lazy Saturday at the house. I started the morning off making John an egg sandwich and us doing a few loads of laundry, well, John mostly did them. My 21-day fix came yesterday, so I made a shopping list and got everything I will need to keep on track. $110 later, I think I am well equipped for at least two weeks worth of healthy eats. Last night we ended up staying in due to the snow and broke out the wok for some Asian beef stir fry. We had a package of skirt steak we bought last week and since it was too cold for grilling our stir fry was the perfect alternative. Here's what you'll need.

    Homemade Asian Sauce: 
  • 1/2 cup tamari (or low-sodium soy sauce)
  • 5 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 2 teaspoons rice vinegar 

  • Beef: 
  • 10 oz snow peas 
  • small can of water chestnuts 
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 10 oz mushrooms, sliced thinly
  • 1 pound beef, thinly sliced (skirt steak, sirloin steak strips or any other steak)


    Combine all the sauce ingredients in a bowl - whisk to combine. Set aside. Bring water in a medium pan to boil. Add snow peas, boil them for 5 minutes, drain. Set aside. Heat a large skillet until hot, add 2 tablespoons olive oil - it should sizzle. Immediately add thinly sliced mushrooms - cook them on high heat, turning occasionally, until they brown nicely. Salt them midway, a little bit (not too much salt, as you will be adding tamari sauce later). Remove mushrooms to a bowl. To the same skillet, on high heat, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, which will sizzle right away. Immediately add thinly sliced meat. You might want to do this in 2 batches, because you will want each slice of meat to touch the bottom of the skillet and for meat slices not to be crowded. This will ensure that meat will brown on high heat. Cook meat on one side until it browns nicely. Turn over all meat slices to the opposite side, and cook more, on high heat, until all slices brown nicely. Remove this batch to a bowl. Add a second batch of meat, and repeat. Return all of the cooked meat back to the skillet. Add the snow peas, drained water chestnuts and cooked mushrooms, then the sauce. On high heat - stir everything to combine, for about 5 minutes

The sauce was super easy to make. We decided to use low sodium soy instead of the tamari, which is similar to soy sauce but a lot thicker, darker and richer. I think next time I may switch it up and try the tamari to see the difference in consistency. We added some water chestnuts to the mix too for a little bit of bite, and I love me some water chestnuts.

Once all of the meat and veggies were cooked, we tossed everything together, added the sauce and cooked for about 5 minutes longer. It came out so delicious and was really filling with all of the protein and veggies. If you'd like, you can also make a side of brown rice for a carby filler. Who needs Chinese takeout when with just a few ingredients you can make this? John also whipped together some TASTY and extremely strong margaritas post dinner, and they may be the reason that the couch is a big part of our Saturday :)

Well, my food shop was a success and let me say, there is nothing like having a healthy stocked fridge. All of the gorgeous colors from my fruits and veggies really got me excited. What I love about this food plan is that every food group has a ton of options that you can choose from. They do not restrict from foods that are part of a healthy everyday diet. Of course you wont find french fries on the list, but the option for whole wheat pasta and healthy grains are acceptable, and I love that. Cutting an entire food group out of my diet just doesn't seem realistic for me. If a "diet" is going to be a lifestyle change, than you have to make it a realistic one that will leave you satisfied and feeling fulfilled. Take a look at all of my grocery store picks from this morning. I spot a lot of green!

When I opened up my package yesterday I was so pumped. A variety of shakes came (vanilla, chocolate and strawberry) with my own shake mixer, 30 minute workout DVDs, my divided and color coded food containers and my food plan for the next couple of weeks. Since I don't keep a scale in the house, I had to run out and buy one to determine how many calories I get per day, but since I am starting on Monday, I'll make sure to weigh myself tomorrow morning and do my calorie intake calculations. I plan to read up on all of my paperwork tomorrow so I am set to go for the week. The workout DVDs seem great and I plan to bang them out as soon as I get up in the morning. I am really excited to start this, not only for obvious reasons like beach season approaching, but to do something that makes me feel good both inside and out. Its extremely easy to lose control of things when your busy living life, so taking control back is important. I read a quote the other day that said,  "take care of your body. it's the only place you have to live," and I thought how true. Feeling good is not only about eating right and working out, its having confidence in yourself and having control or your mind and body. So, here's to taking control back and feeling the best I can feel! Its always good to start something new right before the weather is getting warmer and the stores are putting our their spring and summer lines. I even bought a new maxi dress  to put away for our honeymoon for some inspiration! Tomorrow will be food prep day and I'll make sure to let you guys know how it goes. And don't fret, I have a lot of great recipes to post during the upcoming week. Now go enjoy your Saturday!  


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