For the majority of this month, Brad and I will be participating in a 21-day Daniel fast with our church. This partial fast is inspired by two different passages in Daniel, including the story in Daniel 1 where Daniel and his friends refuse the king’s food and request a diet of water and vegetables.
And that’s predominantly what the fast allows: water, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, nuts, and seeds. We eat fairly healthy as it is, but creating meals without meat, dairy, bread, and sugar has been interesting. Thankfully it hasn’t been as difficult as I anticipated. (Note: There are many different takes on a Daniel fast, so my hubby and I decided that we would follow the guidelines that our church set out. Some interpretations are stricter; some are more lenient.)
Over the last week, I’ve been finding all kinds of new recipes to try out, and while some were just okay, others have been very successful.
The first big win so far was this One Pan Mexican Quinoa recipe that was super easy to make and really tasty. All it takes is a handful of ingredients: black beans, corn, diced tomatoes, vegetable stock, spices, lime juice, avocado, and quinoa. I don’t always keep quinoa on hand, but I had picked up some at Aldi (who else LOVES Aldi?) so we could try it out. Now that I know what to do with it, it may become a staple around here. In fact, this recipe is going on my meal-planning list because we all liked it so well.
Another yummy meal came about more out of necessity than planning. When we first shopped for this fast, we had two sick little boys, so hubby made the grocery store run. Awesome husband that he is, Brad did his best to cross off every item on the list I’d given him, and then some. When I saw that he’d brought home six different containers of mushrooms, I was a bit surprised, and I knew we’d have to use those up quickly. Thankfully, I found this recipe for Garlic and Balsamic Roasted Mushrooms. I actually didn’t expect them to be as delicious as they were. I had to keep from eating the whole pan before Brad made it home for dinner.
One recipe that I tried that didn’t work at all for us was a homemade applesauce fruit roll-up. Having seen the easy how-to video on Facebook, I thought my boys would enjoy a fun little treat one day. It seemed simple enough – pour some unsweetened applesauce onto a silicone baking mat, smooth it out, then let it dry slowly in the oven all day. After waiting several hours for the applesauce to dry out, I was ready to surprise my kids with a homemade roll-up. Unfortunately, I must have done something wrong because it stuck to my silicone baking mat, and parts of it were really difficult to get off. I figured I would just try again some other time, but then when I gave the boys the pieces that I managed to get off the mat, they wouldn’t eat them. They just didn’t like it. So, that recipe was kind of a flop for us. 🙁 (By the way, our boys aren’t on the fast, but this recipe would have worked for all of us had they liked it.)
So that’s what I’ve discovered so far during our first week or so of the Daniel fast, at least about the food part. Thankfully, these 21 days aren’t just about a special diet or a list of what we can eat or can’t. It’s a time to focus on drawing closer to God, seeking His face, and spending time in His Word. No matter what recipes we enjoy or fail with during this time, we can depend upon Him to always satisfy our soul.
“You satisfy me more than the richest feast. I will praise you with songs of joy.” ~ Psalm 63:5