Apologies for the radio silence.
While you weren’t looking, I snuck away to England and Wales and started a new job as a pastry chef in Santa Monica (which requires waking up at 4:30 am).
Now it’s no excuse for me to neglect my blog, however, I hope you guys let this one slide. I promise I will never abandon you again!
Bonus: since I’m a little behind on my posts, today you’ll be getting a two-fer!
Traveling is one of my most favorite things to do, especially when it’s traveling to magical storybook land. The Moors of England and the southern coast of Wales were so unbelievably beautiful, relaxing and dreamy, I kept pinching myself to make sure I wasn’t dreaming. Everything is green. London and Bristol were jaw-droppingly incredible as well.
Despite all the amazing pros to world travel and a new career, I was and am completely off track, digestively speaking. Stress, poor diet, lack of sleep and lack of routine have taken a major toll on me and I’m paying the price. I feel like I’m starting from square one all over again!
When eating at restaurants for every meal, it was pretty much inevitable for some sugar, gluten, corn or any other allergen to make it’s way into my food. There was one point when I was drinking a cider at a pub (watching England vs. Iceland) when I turned completely red and itchy from head to foot! And England lost!
If you’re like me, when our digestion is off it affects every inch of our lives. Acne, brain fog, stomach cramps, major bloating, and overall “clogged” feelings are no fun.
The plan of action.
Getting back on track has been my number one priority.
So, my plan of action since I have been home has been to 1.) clean up my overgrown garden, 2.) eat all the vegetables from my overgrown garden, 3.) stick to a mostly plant-based diet, 4.) exercise, and 5.) avoid any and all restaurant food.
While I was away, my vegetable garden produced some gargantuan sized specimen worthy of winning first prize at the county fair (check my instagram). Blessed.
The amount of zucchini and cucumber that one must eat to keep up with growth is ridiculous and delicious. In effect, I have explored many, many recipes and have discovered that the zoodle/cucoodle route has been my absolute favorite. Who doesn’t love eating vegetables that taste exactly like pasta?
If you haven’t done so already and you can spare $40, buy a vegetable spiralizer! I bought this one. It will instantly become an essential kitchen gadget because it is such a time saver and total game changer. You can even use it to rice your cauliflower. I mean…
Faux and fabulous noodles.
Let me just start off by telling you guys, these recipes are so yummy, you may make a specific night of the week for them.
The zucchini noodle dish tastes like spaghetti, really. It is salty and briny and so satisfying. The cucumber noodle dish is refreshing and light and takes on a rice noodle salad vibe. Perhaps the perfect summer picnic accompaniment.
Are you excited to try these deliciously fresh detox meals?!
Let’s get to it.
Zoodles With Vegan Parmesan
-Spiralizer or julienne mandoline
-Medium cast iron skillet
-1 large zucchini (or 2 small)
-2 teaspoons salt
-1 cup pitted and halved kalamata olives
-6-10 anchovy filets (or 1 + 1/2 teaspoons anchovy paste)
-2 tablespoons canola oil
-pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
-1/2 cup raw cashews
-2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1. Pulse cashews, 1 teaspoon of salt and nutritional yeast in blender or food processor until mixture resembles grated parmesan. Set aside. (Extra vegan parm may be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two months.)
2. Using your spiralizer tool, make your zucchini noodles. Sprinkle zoodles with salt and place on a layer of paper towels to absorb the moisture.
3. In skillet on medium heat, add oil and anchovies. With a wooden spoon, break up the anchovies until dissolved, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
4. Toss the zoodles, olives and red pepper flakes in the pan with anchovy sauce, just to warm through. Top with vegan parmesan. Serve immediately, devour and enjoy!
Note: For best and tastiest results, consume this dish immediately after making. If not, the zoodles will become soggy and no fun!
Asian Cucoodle Salad
-Spiralizer or julienne mandoline
-Strainer or colander
-2 medium to large sized cucumbers (I used one regular cucumber and two small lemon cucumbers.)
-1 large tomato
-1 teaspoon salt
-1 tablespoon tamari or liquid aminos
-1 teaspoon hot sesame chili oil
-1 teaspoon regular sesame oil
-1 teaspoon safflower oil
-1 teaspoon of rooster sauce or sriracha (recipe coming soon)
-juice of one lime (about 1 tablespoon)
-1/2 teaspoon finely grated garlic
-1/4 cup fresh rough chopped cilantro
-1 teaspoon black sesame seeds
-freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Using your spiralizer tool, create your cucumber noodles. Sprinkle with salt, toss, and place in strainer over a bowl or sink. Let drain for about 10-15 minutes.
2. In your serving bowl, whisk all liquids with finely grated garlic. Set aside to let the flavors combine.
3. Dice tomato and add to the serving bowl with dressing, discarding the gooey tomato center and seeds (it will dilute the dressing). Add your cucoodles, cilantro, sesame seeds and black pepper. Serve and enjoy!
Note: You may refrigerate this dish prior to serving. I have made it three hours in advance and it has kept well.
I hope you enjoy these recipes as much as Annie the Shetland Pony enjoys her carrots.