11:19 AM Can you believe that #3 just arrived and I feel like this meal prep month is going by too fast? I wish we could continue with this from week to week, but I think 4 weeks - 4 different meal prep ideas are a good beginning for everyone! I don't know how you feel about this month's theme and vibes, but I hope I can reach some of you out there and maybe inspire you to try meal prepping! 

After week #2 with the motto anxiety, I am continuing with week #3 and the motto fanciness. 

Yes, we continue and we don't stop here. 
Did we all "survive" anxiety week? I have to admit that this week was a bit weird to me. I enjoyed it - no question, but after day two or such, I felt too healthy. Do you know what I mean? I love being healthy and eating stuff which benefits my body, but sometimes, I am also happy when I wake up in the morning and I know I am treating myself today with a nice and creamy chai tea latte, or I bake something for the blog which I will taste as well... During the anxiety meal prep week, there was no cheating and strict healthy food which didn't excite me as usual.
The blueberry smoothie and the dark chocolate apricots were somehow my highlight and I wasn't excited for lunch or dinner, because it was very basic, super healthy, and not turning my brain on (yes, food usually turns me on... it has to). How do you feel about this last week?
The good thing is that we are here to test different recipes and ingredients and fact is that even though this week was a bit low-key and simple, I had a really relaxing week! I was full! I ate a lot and I had no crazy cravings, because I had my daily chocolate... I felt a lot of energy and I exercised a lot which kept me balanced and zen.
So please share your experience - I'd like to hear your perspective!
(Also please don't take my negative words and feel the same about it without trying... I am a very picky eater and I am always a bit critical about certain things. Maybe this was your dream week and the anxiety meal plan was exactly what you are looking for - it's up to you, you decide, and I hope you enjoy it as much as you can) 

So, since I was missing a certain woooow moment last week, or I just wanted to eat something rich and "normal" without feeling like "Okay, you need to eat more of this and don't even look at this, because this here is the only thing that makes your body react.... (this is quiet hard sometimes...)" - I decided to give this next week a fancy glitter and ohhh yassss moment! We will eat fancy, y'all. 
A little fanciness won't hurt anyone - you know why? Because I give you the healthy option and we still shine and feel flawless - now say what. 

Yes, close your eyes. What's a nice comforting food you like to eat but you are not sure about your healthy nutrition or you want to only feel benefits and not any extra kilos or bad guilt. I got you.

So one last time - what can I understand under fancy food options? I told you, food is something special to me. It's sexy, it's attractive, and it makes me happy. A pizza slice from NYC makes me the most excited, but I also love to eat a well marinated and pretty salad... Feeling fancy doesn't need to be a high calorie dinner or lunch. When we think about fancy food, we want the bad stuff. Junk food, everything fried, a lot of fat, plenty of empty carbs, and we are eating until we reach a food coma. When I started eating healthy, I thought that this food is dead for me... It kind of is, but I learned to recreate my fancy dishes into a healthy option. Because we don't have to eat like crazy animals. We can keep a healthy schedule and indulge thinking we eat the nastiest dinner, even though we created a fueling and healthy dish.
There's always a healthy option and yes we can feel fancy with our dirty fantasies in our heads, trust me. 

Remember, I don't force you to eat healthy - this is up to you. It's just something I learned over the last years. I am eating healthier and I feel way better. And yes, I still eat pizza here and then. I just study my food more now and I learn to trick my brain... eating something dirty in a healthy way, makes our brain think we are eating a cheat meal or something that soothes our cravings while looking like a Victoria's Secret model💪🏼

Curious to see what I planned for us this week? I kept it actually basic. I thought about international cuisine and the fantasies I often have... let's see if we share the same fantasies. 


Let's check the meal plan for week #3 


BREAKFAST: matcha pudding with granola 
I am getting super tired of Greek yogurt sometimes and fruits don't help me much making it sexier or feel like I am eating something else. I am a breakfast lover and I am thrilled to have a comforting and so satisfying breakfast so that I can start my day with power and good vibes. I love matcha and I love pudding. In the past I did a pistachio pudding which was so yummy... it inspired me to create this little update. A light green and creamy pudding with a hint of matcha which is so good for overnight oats, chia pudding, or you add the morning glory granola which we did in week #1. 


SNACK: a fruit snack  
Feeling fancy means also to be lazy here and then and that's why we are having a simple, but delicious snack here: any piece of fruit you like. I still had 1000 apples around, so I went with apples. 

LUNCH: spaghetti 
To be honest. I am not crazy about spaghetti - I am more the lasagna kind of person. But I wanted to have something for lunch that is quick, delicious, and very comforting. Spaghetti sound luxurious in my head...and I remembered how awesome they taste after day 2, or 3, when they are soaked with all the sauce! Mhmm... really good. The reason I eat less of these kind of dishes is that I reduce my meat intake... that's why I wasn't sure if I want to eat so much meat this week, but I found a good solution for this! 


SNACK: chocolate protein cookie  
We are eating a tiny portion of spaghetti only, but to feel super healthy still and feel positive about the body, I wanted a snack that keeps fueling us with the right stuff. Some of you might enjoy a workout right now, so this is the perfect post-workout snack! A cookie that is made with chickpeas and you don't even taste them. Oh, and did I mention chocolate? 


DINNER: chinese meat balls with broccoli 
Talking about cravings. I think Chinese food is the food I crave the most. I love pizza, but I also love Chinese fried chicken, noodles, fried rice, dumplings, and orange chicken. I mean the list is long... I love to have proteins in the evening, especially after my workout. I'm actually cutting red meat in the evening and I try to eat less and less of it (maybe you noticed it in my first two meal prep weeks...did you even notice?). Still I wanted us to have one meal, where we focus on meat protein, to feel strong (I used less meat in the spaghetti, so you can surely enjoy this meal here). Just imagine juicy meatballs with a sweet and rich soy glaze and some sexy broccoli. Yes, broccoli is the star of this dish. 


Okaaaay. 
That sounds....yummy.
Let's continue. 


What do we have to shop?  

(organic matcha powder (I once bought 250g - 12,99€)) - I exclude this, because I own this already
oat milk (I bought 1l Oatly - 2,19€) 
oatmeal (I bought 500g - 0,49€)
apples (any fruit you like, I bought 10 for 1.79€)
ground beef (I bought 500g - 2,99€)
whole-wheat pasta (I bought 500g - 0,99€)
tomato sauce (I bought 500ml - 0,39€)
chickpeas (I bought 1 can - 0,69€)
applesauce (I bought one glas - 1,19€)
eggs (I bought a box of 10 - 1,29€)
[soy sauce (I bought 500ml - 1,99€)]
grapefruit juice (I bought 1l - 0,99€)
broccoli (I bought 1kg - 1,69€)
sesame seeds (I bought 250g - 1,49€ - go to an Asian store, it's cheaper)
wakame seaweed optional (I bought 200g - 3,99€)
panko crumbs (I bought 500g - 2,99 - go to an Asian store, it's cheaper)

So I spent: €25,15 ✨
As you can see, I already own my matcha powder, so I have cool budget again this week. There are certain products in the list that cost something, others are cheap again. I know some products from above might not be your favorite or you don't know how to use them later on, so you can surely buy less. Just follow the recipe along and buy the grams that I recommend below. I just happen to buy always more because a.) I can alwayssss use the ingredients b.) it's cheaper for me. 

What shall I have at home in my pantry?

I know every pantry looks different. This is all from my perspective! 
sugars (coconut sugar, maple syrup, agave - I prefer healthier sugars...)
baking supply (again, sugars, flours, baking powder, coconut flakes, cocoa)
oily situations (sunflower oil, coconut oil, olive oil)
basic spices (salt, pepper, garlic, turmeric, cinnamon, paprika)
international cuisine helpers (soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, salsa, sriracha)

What substitute can I use? 

I would highly recommend to cook with the ingredients I have listed, because that's how I know that the recipe will turn out great! If you use any substitute, it can happen that the taste and texture might differ... 
but: 
If you don't like matcha pudding, you can also prepare a chocolate or vanilla version.
If you are not into red meat, you can surely switch it out with some chicken or turkey. 
For the chicken meatballs you can a.) go without seaweed and just season it with some sea salt b.) use different bread for your meatballs to stick together c.) use different vegetables, if you are not a fan of broccoli 

What do we have to prepare now? 

Let's start easy breezy with the pudding, let it cook and get nicely thick. While this is cooking, you can already set up the spaghetti noodles and let them cook, too. Cook the meat, prep the sauce and throw everything together. Keep the noodle water and cook the broccoli in it. Mix the sauce for the meatballs and let is simmer while making the meatballs. Throw the meatballs into the sauce and let them cook and soak in everything while making the protein cookies. Jaaaa...it sounds like a lot, but it's easy and not hard at all to do within 2 hours. I also decided to cook my broccoli fresh every day, so I actually just cooked a tiny amount of broccoli first. Store everything in airtight containers and enjoy it throughout the week. Who can't wait to enjoy second or third day spaghetti? I know you are hungry, guys, haha. 



MATCHA PUDDING 


YOU NEED 500ml milk + 1/3 Cups coconut sugar + 3 tablespoons corn starch + 1/8 teaspoon salt + 1 teaspoon vanilla extract + 2-3 teaspoons matcha (depending on the flavor intensitiy you like) 

1. Take out a pan and put it over medium heat. 
2. Heat up the sugar with the corn starch and salt. Give it a good stir and mix it well. 
3. We want the sugar to melt and be one with the other ingredients. 
4. Continue stirring and add slowly the milk step by step. Turn up the heat a little bit to let the milk cook and get thicker for the perfect consistency of the pudding. 
5. As soon as you see the pudding changing its texture, turn the heat down and add vanilla and matcha. 
6. Let the matcha fully dissolve (help with a whisk) and let the pudding simmer for a couple of minutes. 
7. If your consistency is not being reached yet, let the pudding cook one more time or help yourself out with some extra corn starch. 
8. Test your pudding. If you never had matcha in your life or you are not used to matcha pudding, test one teaspoon first and add more if you want an intense flavor! 
9. Let the pudding cool down, now that everything is cooked, thick, and tasty. 
10. Put it in an airtight container and put some plastic wrapping (sorry Mother Nature) on top of the pudding so it doesn't create a thick skin on top...I don't like that. 


SPAGHETTI - TRUST ME THEY WON'T HURT US 


YOU NEED 500g whole-wheat spaghetti + 400ml pasta sauce (we feel fancy, today, we are not doing it ourselves - just make sure it's not full of sugar and weird ingredients) + 100g (more or less) ground beef + 1/2 teaspoon anis 

1. I told you this is easy breezy, because we don't have to go crazy here, we can chill and enjoy a good meal. (And please don't hate me, because we are not making our own spaghetti sauce... time is money, and we feel fancy this week....no need to go the extra mile). 
2. Cook the meat over medium heat and give it some minutes to turn brown. You can add oil to your pan, but I believe the meat is fatty enough to swim in its own fat.
3. While the meat is cooking, set up a pot of salted water and prepare your dream noodles. You also find an instruction on your noodle packaging. I went with whole-wheat spaghetti noodles, because they are lower in calories and carbs, but higher in fiber and nutrients - that's what I want to hear and especially know. Spaghetti won't kill us. 
4. Okay, noodles are cooking, we play a little bit with the meat and as soon as it is cooked, we can add the tomato sauce! I chose a pasta sauce which is pretty neutral and it also has some Italian herbs inside which I don't have at home - win win situation. The only thing I love to add as soon as the sauce is cooking is 1/2 teaspoon anis. (One should always put a little sugar into tomato sauces to balance the sourness. Since I bought a finished sauce already (and there is a little amount of sugar inside) I love to add anis to have a sweet tone to my sauce and a healthy vibe for my gut.)
5. After 12 minutes, my noodles were done, let's take them out the water (I kept the water for my broccoli) and throw them into my meat tomato sauce to become best friends. 
6. Stir everything well and make sure every noodle is coated. 
7. Keep them on medium heat for another 5-10 minutes. 
8. Put the spaghetti in an airtight container and be excited to enjoy them after they are soaked with sauce and goodness. 


PROTEIN CHOCOLATE COOKIE 


YOU NEED 150g chickpeas + 75g corn flour (yeah, let's keep it gluten-free here) + 45g applesauce + 1/2 teaspoon baking soda + 10-15g cocoa powder + optional chocolate chips + 1 teaspoon vanilla + 1 egg + a pinch of pink salt + 1 teaspoon cinnamon 

1. I never thought I eat a chickpea cookie, but this is dope, y'all. Preheat the oven to 176°C first. 
2. Mash the chickpeas with a fork and add the applesauce which makes mashing more easier. 
3. Add the egg and blend it well with the chickpeas. 
3. In a seperate bowl, mix the corn flour with the baking soda and the cocoa powder. 
4. Now add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. 
5. It's becoming more and more a cookie dough. To finish this give it some extra flavor by adding vanilla, salt, and cinnamon. If you have any favorite spices here to add or you don't want to miss out on your adaptogens, you can add them of course, too. 
6. Optionally you can also add some chocolate chips which make the cookie a real chocolate cookie!
7. When everything is blended enough and the dough looks done, put 1 big tablespoon of dough on your baking tray which is already dressed in some parchment paper. 
8. I divided the dough into 6-7 big cookies - if you are snacky, you can surely do more tiny cookies. 
9. Bake the cookies for about 12 minutes. 


CHINESE MEATBALLS + BROCCOLI 


YOU NEED 800g broccoli + 1/2 Cup soy sauce + 1/8 Cup Teriyaki Sauce + 1/2 Cup coconut sugar + a splash of maple syrup + 1/2 teaspoon ginger + 50ml grapefruit juice + sesame + 1 tablespoon brown rice vinegar + 400-450g ground beef + 2 teaspoons all spice seasoning + 1 1/2 teaspoons tōgarashi spice + 1 egg + 1-2 tablespoons panko crumbs + 1 tablespoon wakame seaweed + 1 teaspoon sesame oil 


1. To focus on the meatballs fully, cook the broccoli first. Just put them in a pot of water and let them simmer for 5-10 minutes over medium to high heat. I like my greens to be a bit crunchy, so I always cook them for a tiny amount of time. It's up to you! As soon as the broccoli is done, set it aside and let it cool down. 
2. Let's prepare the meatballs. Take the ground beef and put it in a large mixing bowl. Season it with all spice seasoning and tōgarashi spice (I love this, because there's orange zest and all the yummy stuff you can imagine with a hint of spiciness) (you can also use chilli here, just use less then) and give it a good first stir. We want all the meat to get to know the spices. 
3. Now add the egg and some sesame oil to give the meat some material to work with to stay in shape when we are making balls. I love to add sesame oil because of it's flavor! You can also leave it out... it's a Chinese inspired dish, so I always like to create A LOT of flavor. 
4. Add the panko crumbs and some wakame seaweed and let the kneading and massaging start. 
5. Incorporate all the ingredients nicely and be very tender with your meat. 
6. Remove the meat mixture from the bowl and put it on your work desk. I love to treat my meat for 1-2 minutes like a baking dough and knead it as if I had a yeast dough in front of me. I believe this helps making it tender and just perfect to not fall into pieces in my pan. 
7. After the massage session, divide the meat into 16 little pieces and form balls with your hands rolling the meat between them. Put the meatballs in a bowl afterwards and put them into the freezer before cooking.
8. While being in the freezer, prepare the sauce. Take out a big pan and add the coconut sugar with the Teriyaki sauce first. Let the sauce cook over medium heat, so nothing is burning here. 
9. Once the sugar is fully dissolved, add the soy sauce and a splash of maple syrup. Keep stirring. 
10.  Now let's make this a bit sexier by adding a little sour note with vinegar, a little spice from the ginger, and my favorite: grapefruit juice. Time to turn up the heat. 
11. We have many ingredients in the pan now - let it cook and get to know each other. When the heat is higher, we bring everything to a boil which creates a better consistency. So don't worry - let it cook and make bubbles. 
12. If you want to have a super rich and thick sauce, you can add some corn starch - it's optional. Let it simmer or just rest a little bit before we add the meat balls. 
13. Let's get back to the fridge to get the meatballs. They are a bit colder now - nice and firm and still in a good shape which is all we want.... Throw them into a pan and cook them for 3 minutes on high heat each side. We want to have a little crust and a lot of flavor before adding the balls to our sauce. 
14. Once the meatballs are cooked and not pink anymore, add them to the simmering sauce and glaze them from each side. 
15. Let everything cool fully down before you transfer them into an airtight container. 
16. For every dinner, I am heating up 3-4 meatballs and I drizzle my broccoli with the awesome soy sauce and sprinkle everything with sesame. Okay, bye. I'm off eating this now. ~~


Ahhhh, what a fancey week. 
Yes, enjoy this. 
Sit down and tell yourself you deserve this. You worked hard, you eat harder. 
And let's be honest this is not bad at all for you. 
You may get to know something new here, you might be bored seeing this - I don't know. But this menu excites me and I can tell you that it is de-li-ci-ous. The bomb. As a Chinese food freak - the evening meal makes my heart beat faster... 

This week we don't need to take a deep breath. You are used to meal prep now, right? 
You might need to take a breath, because it was a stressful week and you just want to relax with some soulfood. Food which makes you feel good. And we feel extra good here, because we still keep it healthy (more or less). You won't feel bloated this week, trust me. We eat in moderation and we don't sit on the couch 24/7, so all the carbs we take in will be transformed to high energy which keeps us going. 
Remeber, we eat the "more heavier" stuff early, so we don't go to bed with a full and bloated stomach. Time your day right, eat smaller portions, but don't forbid yourself to eat your bad food fantasies. 
Test this week of I feel fancy meal prep or pick one recipe only you can imagine to recreate at home. Whatever you choose to do with this post here - share it! I'm curious to hear your opinion and your experiences! If you have any further questions, contact me and I will get back at you!


*Also don't forget to drink enough water. 

Happy meal prepping! 🙃

Contact

© OFF COLOR
Design by The Basic Page