Liver Cleansing Medley

There’s a lot not to like about Sunday nights. Lazy Sunday morning spent lingering over the breakfast table has disappeared. Spontaneous Sunday afternoon adventures have come and gone. And before you’ve gotten anything productive done, it’s 7 pm on a Sunday evening, and Monday morning feels way too close for comfort.

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There is one thing I like about Sunday evenings, though. There’s the feeling of a fresh start, the setting of good intentions, and a hushed hope that this week won’t kick your butt quite as much as last week did.

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I managed an hour in the kitchen tonight, prepping food for the week. This salad took 20 minutes to make, and although it’s not really the food I want to be eating (Smitten Kitchen’s cinnamon toast french toast stole my heart this weekend) I know this salad will help me feel healthy all week long. medley1.jpg

As I’ve learned before, change begets change. Something as small as a few cucumbers and radishes could propel you to get out for a run, do a few yoga stretches before bed, or ditch scanning your morning emails in bed for a few minutes of meditation instead.

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A book I’m reading, The Woman Code, describes this recipe as a “liver cleansing medley”, which sounds a lot more appealing than just “salad.” Author Alisa Vitta writes: “The liver is responsible for removing toxins from your body, and it does this by turning fat-soluble toxins into water-soluble ones so they can be excreted through your large intestine, kidneys, and skin.” If you have a hormonal imbalance, as many people do, your liver can’t operate optimally. Choosing certain foods, like lemon and cruciferous vegetables, give your liver a break. medley2.jpg

I hope you can find some time this Sunday evening to just sit quietly, and enjoy your last few hours of calm before Monday’s rush of deadlines and demands. If you have an extra 20 minutes on your hands, give this medley a try.

Liver Cleansing

Spring Mix Medley

From Alisa Vitti’s The Woman Code

Servings: 6-8

Ingredients:

  • 1 head celery, chopped
  • 1 bunch radishes, chopped finely with mandolin
  • 2 cucumbers, sliced
  • 6 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 jar artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • Dress with apple cider vinegar and olive oil

Mix ingredients in a big jar and store in the fridge, store dressing separately. OR, store medley in individual containers with the dressing on the bottom (see pic above). Medley will last up to 1 week.

 

Healthy chips, 3 ways

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In our quest to eat healthy, it’s easy to jump to conclusions about which foods you should cut out. “I’m quitting sugar!”, “I’m going cold turkey on alcohol,” and “No more snacking for me” have all come out of my lips at one point in time. These blanket statements sound really appealing- but usually by lunchtime I find myself thigh-high in cookies or halfway through a bag of chips.

icecream 2 For many people (including yours truly), complete denial of our cravings usually leads to binging out on that very food a little later. I find I’m much more successful in losing weight when I approach it through moderation and finding healthy alternatives to my favorite unhealthy foods. Enter:

Healthy chips, 3 ways!

 Cheesy Carrot Bits, Spicy Zucchini Crisps, and Rosemary Garlic Potato Chips.

Let’s get to it.

Cheesy Carrot Bits:

  • 7 carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/4 inches
  • 1 TB coconut oil
  • 4 tsp nutritional yeast
  • Salt + Pepper

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Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Oil two baking pans with coconut oil, line with carrots and top with nutritional yeast, salt and pepper.

Bake for 20 minutes. Take out of oven, use tongs to flip carrots. Bake another 10-30 minutes, until brown around the edges and crispy. Lay on cooling rack to cool, sprinkle with more nutritional yeast, and enjoy!

Spicy Zucchini Crisps

  • 2-3 TB flour
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp Cayenne pepper
  • Salt+Pepper
  • 2 medium zucchinis, sliced 1/4 inches (slightly thicker than a quarter)
  • 1 TB coconut oil

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Mix together flour, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Oil two baking pans with coconut oil. Dip your zucchini slices in the flour mixture, then lay on the baking sheets. Flip once so that both sides have a small coating of oil.

Bake for 10-15 minutes. Take out of oven, use tongs to flip zucchini. Bake another 10-20 minutes, until just brown and a little crispy. Lay on cooling rack to cool.

Rosemary Garlic Potato Chips:

  • 3 medium sized potatoes or 6 small potatoes, peeled and sliced very thin on a mandolin
  • 2 tsp rosemary
  • 1-2 tsp garlic powder
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 TB olive oil

Put potato slices in a bowl, cover with cold water, and refrigerate at least an hour (this helps the chips get extra crunchy.) Dry thoroughly with a towel. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Oil two baking pans with oil. Lay out potato slices on pan, flip once to coat both sides. Bake for 15 minutes, take out of oven and use tongs to flip. Bake another 20-30 minutes until brown and crispy. Put in a big bowl straight out of the oven and mix with rosemary, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Lay on cooling rack to cool.

Serve the chip (or chips) of your choice with lots of hummus and fresh veggies!

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Foraged Summer Feast

mushroom harvestWe’re into August already, but this weekend was the first one that really felt like summer. Our good friends Jill and Joe came up for a visit, and reminded us of the pure joy that can only be found in a full day with absolutely nothing to do.

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We took a long nature walk, talked about our dreams for the future, and ate really, really good food.
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During our walk in the woods, they showed us how to look for coral and oyster mushrooms. We harvested them and added them to our CSA chanterelles and black trumpets. We then paired them with our new favorite pasta recipe, good Pecorino Romano, fresh heirloom tomatoes and basil.

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Oh, and big goblets of Wild Sumac Margaritas!

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This dinner was the perfect nod to summer’s bounty. I insist you find some good mushrooms, good friends, good tequila, and make this immediately before summer starts to disappear.

 

Foraged Summer Feast

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“After the 12th one they get good” Salt & Vinegar Chickpeas

FULL DISCLOSURE: These will not magically make chickpeas taste like salt and vinegar chips. Unfortunately, I went into this baking project assuming just that. They will, however, make chickpeas taste a lot better than just chickpeas. And they’re much healthier than chips. But they’re not for everyone.

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As Trevor put it: “Make sure people know how weird these are. [5 minutes later] I can’t stop eating these. After the 12th one they get really good.” You’ve been warned.Read More »