Happy New Year! After a hectic semester and a hiatus from blogging, I’d love to bring you this cleansing Ginger, Tofu, & Shiitake Soup. This reminds me of a milder version of pho and hot and sour soup. It’s light, refreshing, and just what I needed after the holidays filled with Christmas cookies and lots o’ spirits.
Yesterday was such a gross Monday and today is a rainy, dreary Tuesday. I made a big ol’ batch of this Brown Rice Veggie Soup last night using some pantry ingredients and some of the veggies I need for slow cooker buffalo chicken bowls tonight (recipe coming soon!). The soup just came together with no real plan. It’s so fun to toss in a little of this . . . a little of that . . . and watch everything come together. I added a little vindaloo curry to taste since the soup already smelled like these flavors would compliment the garlic and ginger well. The brown rice and copious amount of veggies make a hearty soup you can’t wait to have.
My mom had a pitcher of this going when I was home in Maine last week. Naturally I came home with a cold and whipped up a batch of Cayenne Lemonade to clear the airways and stay hydrated. It’s also great mocktail, especially with a 1:1 ratio of lemonade and seltzer for a fizz. I realize that the recipe is completely subjective; my mom made hers sweeter and mine came out a bit more tart. Toss in some lemon slices and cucumber and you have the simplest drink to feel like every day is a spa day.
I previously tried Trader Joe’s Matcha Green Tea Packets as prepared and felt like I was drinking grass. Sorry, matcha fans. Maybe it’s just me or the type of matcha I tried, but regardless, I was determined to find a new way to enjoy matcha, I added it to a chia breakfast bowl. Loved it this way! But then again, I also cut the recipe from 1 t down to 1/2 t, so I’m sure this had something to do with my new affinity for matcha. (Note the subtle green hue to the bowl versus that vibrant green associated with matcha.) I’m so happy I found cardamom. It adds such a citrusy aspect to recipes and paired so well with the “greenness” of matcha. If I make this again, oranges, grapefruit and pineapple would also be great toppings in addition to the mango. Load up the fruit and take a break from oats, eggs and smoothies for breakfast. This Matcha Chia Breakfast Bowl is both light and filling and just what you need for a healthy morning detox of sorts.
I made a boomerang for this, but sadly, uploading videos to my blog is somehow surprisingly complicated. Thus, you’re stuck with these rainy background photos, whose melancholy nature actually makes you want to drink tea, right? I made this Apple Cider Vinegar Detox Tea last spring using local honey in an attempt to keep my allergies at bay. Not entirely sure if it helped for allergies, but I enjoyed drinking the tart tea warm either first thing in the morning or right before bed. I’ve been an on-again, off-again Tone It Up follower for 3 years now, and they recommended a version of this they call “Meta D” with apple cider vinegar (ACV), apple juice, cinnamon and cayenne. (They also have ACV and fruit blends here.) It does boost some health benefits that can’t hurt: cinnamon is anti-inflammatory, ginger helps with digestion and ACV and cayenne rev up metabolism. Here’s a warning, it is quite tart, but try to enjoy without overloading it with honey (aka sugar albeit ). I also really like this not cold, not piping hot, but warm juuuuust right in the middle.
I made my own vegetable broth! It’s so easy thanks to Buzzfeed’s Tasty. Save veggie scraps, toss them in the freezer in a ziplock, and once the bag is full, you add the scraps, fill with water and simmer your broth to perfection. I’ve also done this in a slower cooker with a chicken carcass, carrots, onion and celery to make chicken stock — another easy 8 hr option. Plus, it’s great since you can manage how much sodium is in the broth; I added 1 teaspoon of salt for the whole batch, which is about 150 mg of sodium per cup of homemade veggie broth. I made this broth during the week while studying and I’ve been accumulating excess veggies leftover from Slow Cooker Sesame Chicken Brown Rice Bowls and Spaghetti Squash Lasagna ever since. I decided it was Soup Sunday and made a Winter Veggie Detox Soup with what I had piling up in my fridge. Winter produce that’s in season are lemons (or any citrus), kale, and sweet potatoes. I used fresh and ground spices to rev up metabolism, aid with digestion and help with inflammation. Not sure if it’s so tasty from sautéing lemon slices in fresh garlic, ginger and coconut oil or if it’s the flavors from the turmeric, cayenne and cinnamon, but for totally winging this soup, it’s pretty darn good.
I subjected myself to be the guinea pig for one of those tea detoxes or a “teatox.” Ok,”subjected” isn’t quite the right word. I was curious. I volunteered faster than Katniss in the Hunger Games. The teatoxes and tea cleanses are all over Instagram and Pinterest these days, and people are raving about the benefits and #TransformationTuesday. So I thought, why not? I’d like to think I already eat and exercise quite well, and maybe this detox is the boost I need after the fourth of July. A 14 day or a 28 day regimen sounded too daunting. An 8 day teatox from Skinny Me Tea sounded just right like, “Yeah, I can definitely try this.” Here’s the idea of the teatox and my musings from Trying a Tea Detox: Continue reading “Thoughts on a “Teatox””