Many thanks to those of you who chatted with me at Candlelight Chat #1. Between your encouraging & wise words and the relief of (not so) simply acknowledging the need to let it go (speaking of the schedule) and let it be (speaking of this journey), I woke up yesterday really excited to get back to Imperfect Zen and see what I come up with..authentically! So when I got inspired and excited while baking my strawberry-lemon doughnuts for breakfast, I knew it was the topic of my first unscheduled post!
I mentioned in our candlelight chat that I’m trying to lose a little weight…just twenty pounds. But trying to lose twenty pounds is both a blessing and a curse. First, twenty pounds is far less overwhelming than fifty or a hundred or more…and that’s a definite blessing. But because it’s “just” twenty pounds, you put up with it longer or put it off or even refuse to recognize that you need to do something! Being in my forties now, feeling my body change, I recognize it’s now or never, and inspired by a friend and a summer special, I signed up for Weight Watchers a month ago.
I’m really pleased with my steady progress these past four weeks, but even more so with my shifting mindset. I’m redefining my relationship with food in the sense that I don’t look at new, healthier food choices as a mandate, but as an adventure. And I’m finding ways to enjoy favorites in a new way. We’ll get to that further in a moment.
First, I just want to point out that besides the health benefits that come with being at a healthier weight, and the fun of looking in the mirror anew or trying different clothes on, it should also be noted that there’s a significant spiritual lightening that comes when you shed physical weight that is dragging you down. At the very least, you spring out of bed easier which means you spring into your day easier! And you move through your day feeling lighter…taking lighter steps, adding a bounce to those steps, and raising your vibration overall!
But all that said, losing weight has to be achieved realistically and in a way that’s sustainable. Which means, in my world, that there is no future without doughnuts.
Doughnuts are one of my favorite things. They just make me happy. And when you find something in this life that makes you happy (and is pretty harmless), you should treasure it. Unfortunately, a couple of weekends ago when I tried to have a regular doughnut from my favorite local place, it sent me into a tailspin of sugar & fat cravings. The time will come when I’ll learn how to incorporate regular doughnuts back into my everyday life, but I guess I’m not quite there yet if I want to continue losing weight…since one doughnut apparently leads to Mexican food and Nestle chocolate chips in the cupboard and all the leftovers in the fridge! Still…there can be no future without gorgeous doughnuts in my life. So in the continued spirit of June “Strawberries & Authenticity” and having fun trying new foods, I found a way to have my doughnut and eat it too!
Weight Watchers has lots of amazing recipes available on their site. I’ve already tried three dinner recipes and not only were they healthy, delicious, and satisfying, but my husband adored them all. Bonus! Given that it’s June and summer and the season of the strawberry, when I found the strawberry-lemon baked doughnut recipe (pasted below for you) I knew I had to try it! I even quickly ordered a doughnut baking pan.
Here are the Sunday results!
Aren’t they pretty?!
Okay, complete honesty. They weren’t as amazing as I hoped. Except for the shape, they’re really nothing like the doughnuts you get at your favorite local doughnut shop. And my husband was not a fan of this recipe. But, all that said, I still enjoyed them (especially after a second toasting in the oven) for what they were. They satisfied my doughnut craving, but more importantly, gave me an interesting base recipe to experiment with. (And I was especially full of ideas after binge watching the Great British Baking Show all weekend!) And here’s my real point: self-care and healthy nourishment doesn’t have to mean giving up things that we enjoy or that make us happy…it’s just an opportunity to learn to know and love them in new ways!
If you make these, let me know what you think. If you’re a master baker and know a way to make these even more doughnut-y while staying healthy, please share! And let me know what food is non-negotiable for you…and if it’s not traditionally the healthiest thing to eat, have you found ways to incorporate it into your life in a balance, healthy way? I need all the tips I can get!
Your “Donut Dolly”,
Weight Watchers Strawberry-Lemon Baked Doughnuts
Use fresh strawberries in this recipe – frozen berries will give off a lot of water and could result in mushy doughnuts.
4 spray(s) cooking spray
1 large egg
2 Tbsp sugar, granulated
1⁄4 cup(s) low-fat milk (1%)
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
3⁄4 cup(s) white all-purpose flour
2 tsp lemon zest, finely grated
1 tsp baking powder
1⁄2 tsp table salt
1⁄3 cup(s), raw strawberries, fresh, cut into very small pieces
1⁄3 cup(s) freeze-dried strawberries, roughly crumbled (I didn’t have these so I just increased my raw strawberries a tad)
1 Tbsp powdered sugar