Wednesday, January 8, 2014

January Cleanse Part One...

Woodstock Peace Salad - Spinach, Green Cabbage, Sunflower Seeds
Tomato, Cucumber, Kalamata Olives, Avocado Tahini Dressing

I did not forget that I promised I’d keep you in the loop on all my New Year’s cleansing details - it’s just that I’ve been busy - incase you haven’t yet noticed, I’m sometimes notoriously bad at structuring my time! Over the weekend I was especially derailed and never seemed to have my camera handy - no camera, no pictures, not much to post about you know?

Anyway, the weekend was just my ‘primer’ as I mentioned before, it was the slow giving up of the bad, and the slow incorporation of all that’s good. I ate up the last of my holiday goodies, and made sure to get into a routine of green smoothies - a combo of spinach, water, banana, mango -1 12oz for breakfast and another 12oz to drink on break at work. Lunches were big ole salads, or in the case of Saturday where I dropped my lunch on the ground I bought a sesame bagel, an avocado, and a tomato and ate an open faced sandwich with a bit of sea salt and pepper sprinkled on top. Strangely that impromptu sandwich and my green smoothie kept me so full all day that I wasn’t hungry for dinner and so I decided to end the night with some water, tea, and some fresh grapefruit juice. Dinner Friday night was the sesame noodles from Robin Robinson’s book “Party Vegan.” These were super delicious, and though they look and sound decadent they weren’t really. Buckwheat Soba Noodles with broccoli, tahini, sesame seeds, onion, garlic, tamari, and siracha. Pretty straight forward and yet they were so satisfying. It’s not likely I’ll be eating a lot of - or possibly any - pasta on this cleanse, but since this was only a ‘primer’ I didn’t feel too guilty about it. Especially since it was a whole foods meal.

Sesame Noodles with Broccoli 

Sunday night was whole wheat penne that my husband made. I had neglected to make dinner before leaving for work Sunday and so he took care of it, My husband is not very proficient in the kitchen, but he can whip up a mean batch of pasta. Unfortunately I neglected to take a picture of the dish. He made a light olive oil sauce and added lots of garlic, a bit of onion, red pepper flakes, zucchini, tomato and parsley to the dish, then jazzed it up with a little sea salt and pepper. Sounds simple, but trust me, it was so good. He used an entire head of garlic!

Monday was when things were suppose to get serious and it all started off well enough. I got up and made a large batch of juice. A fruit combo that included grapefruit, oranges, and lemon, which was delicious. Then I made a big batch of green juice - Swiss Chard, Kale, Cucumber, Apple, Pineapple, broccoli stems, celery, ginger and lemon. It was a bit bitter due to the massive amount of broccoli stems I included and so I altered it a bit with a few drops of liquid stevia, and it was actually really good and refreshing. I made a couple of 12 oz bottles of each juice and popped them into the freezer. I know it’s best to drink fresh juice right away, but the reality of it is that I’m just not going to juice each day - I don’t have time for that. So instead I thought juicing twice a week and freezing the juice would be a much more feasible plan, and it’s been working great so far.

Super Simple Stir-fry Wok Veggies
Over Quinoa and Edamame 

My downfall came early Monday evening. The weather in Chicago is bad - I’m sure you’ve heard - still my husband and I decided to venture out in the arctic chill to catch a film that was playing a good hour from our house. We were gone for some time, and since I’d only had fruit juice and green juice all day I started to feel that gnawing in my gut. I broke down and bought a vegan cookie at the theater, and then after we grabbed a cup of coffee to warm up. Sugar and Caffeine are two things I’m trying to avoid and so I decided I’d start the cleanse ‘for real’ Tuesday.

Monday nights dinner however was another massive Woodstock Peace Salad and it was amazing.

Yesterday went much the same way as the days previous. Each day I’ve started my morning with a glass of water with lemon. Then I drink a 12oz juice. Then I drink a cup of tea, if I’m hungry I drink another juice and then make a breakfast. Yesterday I was so busy with school work that my breakfast ended up being more of a lunch but I was craving oatmeal and so I didn’t think there were any rules against making oatmeal for lunch.

I loaded my bowl of oats with sliced raw almonds, pumpkin seeds, flaxseed, dried cranberries, dried blueberries, a dash of cinnamon, a tbsp of blackstrap molasses, a few drops of stevia and just enough unsweetened almond milk to give it a nice consistency. It was delicious.

Yesterday’s dinner was this super simple Stir-fry Wok Vegetables from Kriss Carr’s book “Crazy Sexy Kitchen” It’s lightly sauteed onion, red bell pepper, snow peas, button mushrooms, oyster mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, baby bok choy, and ginger. The sauce is super simple, just vegetable broth and tamari, I added a bit of red pepper flakes and garlic for fun then served it over some quinoa I boiled in water with edamame. It doesn’t sound like much but this was super satisfying.

So that about recaps the past few days. Sorry for the lack of pictures, I’ll try to be more diligent in that department from now on. Though I probably won’t get the chance to post every day of my cleanse I’m going to aim for 2 posts per week, recapping what I’ve been doing.

I have to say, it's only been a few days but I already feel a lot better then I've felt in a while. I have a lot more energy, and I feel more satisfied. Though I had a bit of a sweet craving last night I was able to overcome it by drinking a 12oz bottle of fresh juice, and I felt a lot better then I would have, had I given in and eaten a square of chocolate or something.

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