Starting my day waking up to hot water with lemon and feeling instantly energized; ending my day in a soothing and relaxing mineral lavender bath soak in my big clawfoot tub was amazing. I looked forward to both each day, now to nourish myself and my husband with food we enjoyed that was dairy, meat, and gluten-free (and no caffeine or alcohol don’t forget) during the hours in between. I had a pantry full of protein rich quinoa (Keen-wah, sounds like it should be in cartoon super hero fight scene caption), lentils, and beans (detox gave me a chance to put a dent in the stockpile) and a fridge full of freshy herbs, vegetables, and fruit……let the freshy fresh creations begin!
My favorites from the week were Lentil and Kale Detox Dal, Colorful Quinoa Salad, Guacamole and Pico de Gallo (both homemade), and Thai Basil & Shitake Stir fry. These were so delicious they will be incorporated into my recipe repertoire. By the third day of eating this fresh and nourishing way I felt the positive effects of improved digestion, more energy, a feeling of lightness in my gut and my body, brighter complexion, reduced appetite, greater satiation, and the most surprising to me was a heightened sense of taste. It was like my taste buds had super powers! Once I experienced these effects and how amazing I felt I knew this detox was a great idea and likely a practice I will repeat. Honestly I enjoyed these dishes and the others I created so much that I didn’t feel deprived but energized to incorporate more quinoa and lentils in my diet. My husband was over quinoa and lentils by the end of the week, but that’s ok too. Give one of these recipes a try, nice way to get acquainted with quinoa.
1 cup lentils (if you are using dry they will need to be rinsed and soaked overnight)
1/2 c onion, chopped
1-2 clove garlic, minced
1-2 teaspoons coconut oil (alternatively: ghee, safflower or peanut oil)
1 scant teaspoon Garam Masala (or 1 pinch each: turmeric, coriander, ginger, cinnamon, cumin)
1 carrot, quartered and chopped
1 red pepper (any color would work)
1 cup kale, stalks removed, leaves torn into bits
2 cups vegetable broth (I LOVE Rapunzel VeganVegetable Bouillon with Sea Salt & Herbs)
Tamari to taste
Fresh chopped cilantro and scallions to garnish
Rinse lentils and drain. Melt coconut oil over medium heat. Sprinkle in spices and saute one minute. Add onion and cook a few minutes until it softens. Stir in lentils until thoroughly coated. Add carrot, pepper, kale and cook a moment. Turn heat to high and add vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then cover and turn heat to low. Cook 20-25 minutes. Season with Tamari to taste. Serve over quinoa garnished with fresh chopped cilantro and scallions.
*I don’t measure when I cook, but I did measure the Garam Masala because it is not a spice I use a lot. It is tasty! I used more veg than listed too, you can eyeball it. I am a huge fan of cast iron and I am convinced that is what took this dish to the next level (coupled with that amazing veg stock), but you need one of the really big deep skillets.
Colorful Quinoa Salad
Bowl of prepared quinoa (pick a color: red, black, tan. I used red)
Handful of halved purple grapes
1 orange, peeled, sectioned, cut
1 cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 orange pepper, seeded and chopped
Handful of fresh chopped cilantro and parsley
Dressing optional & to taste – I used a splash of toasted sesame oil and wild cherry balsamic vinegar
**this salad has amazing flavors with the fresh fruit, veg, and herbs. Apples and pears would also be good, use what you have.