April 7, 2013

Just a lovely April weekend.

I love a good weekend spent in the nest, where I can get caught up on housework, dig out the clutter in my closets, and experiment with new recipes for a Saturday night meal – all, of course, at a leisurely yet bustling pace.  (It sounds contradictive, but you know what I mean, right?)

Since completing my 21-day cleanse a couple weeks ago I have introduced grains back into my diet, but otherwise have predominantly maintained the eating regimen.  (Full disclosure, though:  I did enjoy my first Gifford’s chocolate-chip ice cream of the season on Easter Sunday.  And yes, it was amazing.) 

They say a habit (good or bad) takes 21 days to develop, and during the cleanse I realized that I could actually give up certain foods I never thought I could cut out of my diet, like refined carbs (Crackers! Croutons!  Candy!), for example.  Now, with the exception of off-beat cravings for Popeye’s fried chicken and homemade brownies (of which I will still allow myself to indulge in on occasion, because let's just be reals here), my desire for non-inflammatory alkaline foods (green vegetables, etc.) has come to satisfy my in palate in ways I never thought possible, which is still just crazy to me, but alas.  In addition, I’ve continued my morning ritual of drinking freshly made green juice because it makes me feel amazing and energetic and quite frankly because now I don’t want to start my day with anything else.  Oh, how I love the power of habit, especially when it's a positive one!

Leading a healthy lifestyle is easy and fun when you’re around people who share the same interest, and I'm very lucky that way.  Having my husband’s new business partner and his wife over for dinner was particularly enjoyable because they are gluten free (and have been for years).  It was a fun challenge to marry a plant-based meal with a gluten-free one.  For starters, I made Kris Carr's Crazy Sexy Kale salad, a delicious salad made by “massaging” the tough kale leaves along with avocado and red peppers, finished with fresh-squeezed lemon and cayenne pepper and oil (which I actually replaced with a few splashes of balsamic vinegar since the salad would be moist enough with the 1.5 avocado).   I kid you not when I say that it was kind of orgasmic, which I used to say about chocolate cake, and I still think that, but now I might have to relegate this kale salad to that category as well.

For the main dish, I made a vegetable lasagna, of which the “noodles” were thinly sliced summer squash and zucchini, and kale and walnut pesto.  As I cut into the dish, I warned everyone: “This may not be my greatest culinary achievement yet” fearing that it might be a dreadfully boring amalgam of bland stewed vegetables.  Thankfully I was wrong – it was flavorful and rich tasting and also a huge hit, paired with my guests’ delicious homemade gluten-free garlic rolls.  I capped the meal off with a tofu and avocado chocolate mousse sweetened with fresh Maine maple syrup and honey, which I will definitely be making again.  (Only problem was the recipe made only four tiny ramekin-sized servings.)

And today is Sunday, my favorite day of the week.  No schedule; no commitments; PJs until noon. Just the way I like it.


Cheri said...

I must admit that your ability to complete the cleanse has put a bug in my ear. I have been having issues with fatigue and mood stability lately and have been relying on my favorite foods (sweets and refined carbs) to get me through. I can't help but wonder if these foods that I rely on to "save" me are actually what's causing the issue. Not to mention, I discovered symptoms that my son and husband have that could indicate gluten sensitivity.

Sarah Woehler Michaud said...

It might be worth trying, even just for a couple days. I will say that it was seriously one of the best things I've done. If you want to chat about it further sometime, let me know. :)