Monday, January 20, 2014

January Cleanse Part 3...

Wild Mushroom and Minted Brussels Pho Show

Last Tuesday began much the same as any other day I’ve had on this cleanse. A glass of water, a bottle of Immune Me Juice, and a little later on a bowl of oatmeal. Since I was rather busy on Tuesday and we had a ton of leftovers I decided that Tuesday night would be a ‘leftovers’ night. I ate the leftover Coconut Red Lentil Soup, My husband ate the left over Crazy Sexy Chili, and we each had a nice bowl of Garlic and Greens Soup since there wasn’t much left of either of the other two.

Garlic and Greens Soup
Wild Mushroom/Brussels Pho

Wednesday brought a new day and a new dinner. The morning was the same, juice, and then a green smoothie of spinach, banana, wheatgrass, water, and stevia. Which I forgot to photograph. I ate the last bowl of Garlic and Greens Soup for lunch and then dinner was this luscious and delicious Wild Mushroom Ginger, and Minted Brussels Pho Show from Crazy Sexy Kitchen. I’d been dying to make this soup ever since I got the book but somehow I just never got around to it. I have to say it doesn’t exactly taste like a traditional pho - one of my favorite ever soups - but it is damn delicious. There are so many mushrooms in it - portobello, shiitake, maitake, and button! It has baby corn, water chestnuts, mint, onion, bok choy, anise, lime, soy sauce and brussels sprouts. I love the idea of using brussels sprouts in this soup. I love them, and I think they’re a really under utilized vegetable. Everyone always roasts them, which is great and all, but it’s nice to have a little sprout creativity once in a while. You can eat this soup as is or serve it with your choice of noodles, I picked rice noodles because pho just isn’t pho without some rice noodles you know?

Thursday started off with more juice, and then a smoothie. I wanted something a little different from my usual green smoothie and so I decided to go with the Aztec Spirit from Crazy Sexy Kitchen. This smoothie has almond milk, cacao powder, vanilla, cayenne, maple syrup and kale. It also calls for espresso but that’s listed as optional and so I opted out since I’m staying away from coffee on this cleanse. The flavor of this was really crazy, you could definitely taste the ‘greenness’ but it was almost masked by the sweetness and the chocolate. The strange combination really appealed to me, and I found it really satisfying. Since chocolate is something I’m trying to stay away from on the cleanse I cut the amount of cacao powder to a 1/4 cup. I’ve definitely had a few chocolate cravings in the past week, and this smoothie really satisfied that need without turning me into a choc-o-holic.

Woodstock Peace Salad 

Lunch was another giant Woodstock Peace Salad - this one had romaine, spinach, red cabbage, sunflower seeds, green onion, tomato, chickpeas and black olives. Super delicious.

Lentil and Chard Ragout Over Wild Rice 

For dinner we had another meal from Crazy Sexy Kitchen - the Lentil and Chard Ragout. Honestly when I looked over the recipe I didn’t think it was going to be that fantastic. I feared it might be bland but it turned out to be super delicious, I was really amazed/ I love how simple it is too - just Beluga Lentils, Swiss Chard, shallots, garlic, peas, nutritional yeast, red pepper flakes, parsley, lemon zest, salt, pepper, thyme, broth and sherry. It also calls for Earth Balance but I left that out. I took Carr’s advice and paired it with a plate of wild rice, which was a delicious suggestion but doesn’t make for a very lovely or cheerful photo - sorry.

Friday started off with more juice and then an Aztec Spirt. For lunch I made a big batch of the Greensicle Smoothie from Carr’s Crazy Sexy Kitchen to take with me to work. It’s got almond milk, oranges, vanilla, agave, spinach, and romaine leaves. Very tasty. I also ended up drinking a Suja Mango Juice that had mango, Serrano chili, and some other tasty fruits in it.

Aztec Spirit Smoothie 

Dinner was leftover Pho and leftover Ragout.

Saturday I had no more juice left and no time to make anymore before work. Instead I started my day with another Greensicle smoothie, and then I made a batch of the Strawberry Fields Smoothie also from Crazy Sexy Kitchen to take to lunch. This one had Almond milk, strawberries, lemon zest, orange, banana, and spinach, and it was amazing!

Greensicle Smoothie 

The smoothie kept me mostly full throughout the day but I did get hungry around 7pm or so and so I ate 2 packets of Justin’s Vanilla Almond Butter. I find that when I’m working, and I get hungry something small and protein rich gets me through.

Curried Nada-Egg Salad Wrap

For dinner we had the Curried Nada-Egg Salad with Watercress Wraps from Crazy Sexy Kitchen except I didn’t have watercress and so I used Arugula instead. This was a really good tofu ‘egg’ salad. I love a good curried tofu salad, and this one had tofu, green onions, carrot, parsley, cilantro, nutritional yeast, Dijon mustard, curry, sea salt - I opted to use black salt instead, - and black pepper. I didn’t have gluten-free tortillas and so we used sprouted tortillas which is better then just eating the regular wheat kind anyway. The salad also uses a home-made cashew aioli but I didn’t have the time to make it before work so the recipe says you can use Vegenaise instead which I had, so I used that despite not wanting to eat processed foods on the cleanse. These were really good and filling wraps though I think next time I’ll do it with the gluten-free or regular tortillas. Sprouted tortillas are great, but they’re a bit tough.

Sunday I started with another Greensicle Smoothie because I didn’t have time to make juice that day either. Then I made a big batch of smoothie to take for lunch with me. This time it was my own concoction of almond milk, blueberry, orange, banana, spinach, flaxseed, and vanilla. Very tasty, and a very lovely shade of blue but I forgot to take a picture.

Again this smoothie kept me satisfied most of the day but around 6:30pm my stomach began rumbling and I started craving something solid. I knew I had a nice dinner waiting for me at home and I didn’t want to ruin it but I needed something. I wanted sweets, and I wanted chocolate and I craved pizza and all the bad things I can’t eat right now but instead I opted for a quarter pound of maple roasted cashews and surprise, surprise that did the trick. No more hunger, no more cravings. They weren’t overly sweet, nor were they overly salty, just enough of each to stave off the crazy cravings and give me the satisfaction mastication.

Rice Bowl - Brown Rice, Red Cabbage, Broccoli and Green Onion
With Annie's Organic Green Garlic Dressing 

Dinner was a big hearty rice bowl. Full of brown rice, red cabbage, green onions, and broccoli. Super simple, but delicious. Originally I intended to make a dressing of my own but was so tired by the time I got home I decided ‘to hell with it’ and used Annie’s Organic Green Garlic Dressing instead. This was a super tasty and satisfying meal and I quite liked the dressing which I’d never had before.

And that about brings us up to speed. Overall I still feel great, though I experienced more cravings this past week then I did before. I’m not sure why, but I find the days I have the worst cravings are the days I’m working, and particularly seem to hit at night, around the 7pm mark. It’s all mental I’m sure, and probably related to my soaring stress levels at work but I was happy I had the control and the willpower to recognize this and reject the cravings instead of falling prey to them.

Also since I’m feeling much better today will be my first day getting back into an exercise routine! I’m quite excited about that because it’s been far too long.

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