Happy 2013 everyone! Hope you all had an fun and relaxing holiday season. I’m guessing you might be here because you’re craving something simple and nutritious to start off the year. You came to the right place.
Since I’ve been generally eating better over the past few years, the shift from my regular diet to my holiday diet has been pretty drastic. I’ve never been into new year’s diets or resolutions, but every year I’m finding myself to be more and more relieved that the celebrations, dinners, and social eating gatherings are over, longing for the day I can take back control of my meals.
This is the first year that I’m debating on doing some form of a juice cleanse, seriously craving a literal break from food. Doing some basic Google research on how to go about this and whether or not it’s actually a good idea leads to the most comprehensive information coming from juice cleanse companies trying to sell super expensive bottled juices. I’m not sure there was actually any real research done on the effects of juice cleanses, yet there are many sources calling bullshit on these so called “schemes”, explaining that several days of starving yourself on juice doesn’t lead to any real detox, long term weight loss, or improved health. Since I’m not looking to achieve any of the above, just wanting to give my digestive system a little break, I spoke to others that have done this kind of stuff in the past, collecting some pretty rave reviews. The verdict? There’s no better way to find out than to experiment. I’ll probably see my naturopath to get his opinion and guidance, and then at some point in mid January, embark on a mission to consume nothing but juice for a couple of days, observing my body’s reaction. Once I get this whole cleanse thing figured out, I’ll do a more detailed post on the research and advice I collect, along with a review of my own experience. If you know of any good sources of information, recipes, or actual research, please send it my way. I would also love to hear any personal experiences with juice cleanses, so please share!
In the meantime, fresh salads and warm veggie soups are where it’s at. In January, our local veggies are pretty limited, so I’m getting back into sprouting some seeds that are laying around the kitchen. Sprouts are a fantastic source of vitamins and enzymes that are usually lacking in our veggie supply throughout the winter, so it’s a perfect time to experiment with those grains, seeds, and legumes (you’ll be surprised at how many of them you can easily sprout). I’m currently loving Chickpea Magazine, and there’s a really great article on sprouting by Tiffany Noe in their Spring 2012 issue and plenty of tutorials on sprouting specific seeds using various methods, available online.
- 1 cup sprouted lentils (sprouted mung beans work as well)
- 1/2 cup packed grated carrot (about 1 medium carrot)
- 1 avocado, cubed
- 2 Tbsp cubed sheep’s milk feta
- thinly sliced red onion, to taste
- 1 Tbsp. za’atar (or your choice of dried green herbs)
- 2 lemon wedges
- salt, pepper, and extra-virgin olive oil, to taste
- This is probably the easiest recipe ever! Combine all of the ingredients, season with lemon, olive oil, salt, and pepper, to taste.