Sunday, January 10, 2016

Abundance Diet, Days 4-7

I'm back! And I'm still on this 28-day Abundance Diet, using recipes from Somer McCowan's The Abundance Diet cookbook. It's a whole foods-based, gluten-free, sugar-free plan that's perfect for my annual January cleanse.

I'm following the meal plan included in the book, and as I mentioned in my last post on Wednesday night, the plan includes leftovers. So on Thursday, Day 4, I pretty much ate the same stuff I ate on Monday — tropical colada green smoothie, falafel salad with quinoa tabbouleh, quinoa minestrone, spinach & artichoke dip, and tofu & veggie stir-fry.

But I did try one new thing from the book on Thursday. I had the Ultra Green Juice right upon waking, before doing my morning yoga. I changed a few things based on the produce that I had in my fridge, but this had pear, celery, cucumber, bok choy, spinach, parsley, lemon, and lime. Really yummy and such a lovely shade of green! Tasted even better in my awesome Memphis Grizzlies Choose 901 glass.

On Friday, I had leftovers of what I ate on Tuesday — razzleberry lemonade green smoothie, Greek chopped chickpea salad, white bean & kale stew, oil-free hummus, and Mexican casserole. But on Friday night, I had my first dessert on the cleanse! Somer's plan includes two desserts a week, one on Saturday and one on Sunday. But I'd rather have my desserts on Fridays and Saturdays because those are the nights I consider to be the real weekend nights, and they're the nights that, when I'm not cleansing, I'm usually imbibing. So having dessert on those nights make not having a glass of wine or beer more tolerable (note: I will be having some wine throughout the cleanse, but I'm saving that for special occasions). 

Anyway, about that dessert. On Friday night, I made Somer's super-yummy No Bake, No Stovetop Cookie Bites. These are like the raw version of Mississippi Mud Cookies. They're made with a base of cashews, dates, and cocoa powder, and they're flecked with carob chips (Somer's recipe calls for dark chocolate chips, but I didn't have any all-natural, cleanse-friendly ones. Plus, I love carob!). I'll definitely be making these again after the cleanse. They'd be perfect pre-workout snacks. By the way, Somer has published the recipe online here. You need to make these!

Weekends on the Abundance Diet call for solid breakfasts! Every weekday, I've been drinking green smoothies, which are awesome because I love smoothies. But sometimes, I like to chew in the mornings. And I finally got to do that on Saturday morning with this Florentine Tofu Scramble, made with fire-roasted tomatoes, spinach, and scallions. I ate two servings! So good.

The rest of Saturday's meals were the same as Wednesday's meals — vegan egg salad, laksa with rice noodles and tofu, cucumber tzatzki with steamed veggies, and cauliflower & potato bake. But I did get another dessert on Saturday night. This Applesauce Snack Cake cured the cake craving that's been brewing these last couple days. This is an oil-free, sugar-free, gluten-free cake, so it wasn't quite the same as one of Cassi's buttercream-topped Pink Diva cupcakes. But it was still warm and fluffy and cake-y. It was date-sweetened (yes!) and stevia-sweetened (which is a flavor I'm still not used to in baked goods). For some reason, I love stevia in tea and smoothies, but it's not my favorite thing in baked sweets. 

By the way, I don't think I've mentioned yet that my co-worker Susan is doing this cleanse too! So I was able to halve the dessert recipes and split them with her. Teamwork! I definitely need help eating them since the desserts don't repeat as leftovers on the cleanse.

Sunday morning meant another solid breakfast — Chocolate Buttermilk Pancakes! These were also gluten-free, sugar-free, and oil-free, but I couldn't tell as much with these. In fact, I could barely tell they were gluten-free. Maybe the thin-ness makes a difference in the concentration of that gluten-free flour taste? Whatever it was, these were delicious. I used maple syrup to sweeten, and I served these with bananas.

I still plan to eat out a few times throughout the month, while I'm on my cleanse. But when I do, I want to do my best to stay within the parameters of the cleanse. Every Sunday, my friends and I brunch at Imagine Vegan Cafe, so I kept that plan going today. We usually meet around 11:30. The pancakes held me over until about 11, and then I was hungry again. Just in time for brunch.

Imagine's menu is heavy on plant meats and indulgent fried stuff, which is typically what I order there. But there are a few menu items that are on the healthier side. So I opted for a couple of those — Vegetable Soup.

And a Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette.

Not oil-free of course! But that's fine with me. I'm not really sticking to the oil-free/low-oil thing as part of my cleanse. It just so happens that the recipes in the book are low-oil or oil-free. But I'm fine with having oil throughout the month. The soup, which was loaded with garlic, really hit the spot on this cold January day.

The rest of Sunday was another repeat of Thursday and Monday's meals. But tomorrow, there's a whole new line-up of food! Can't wait!


Jenni (aka Vegyogini) said...

I LOVE carob! I'm really interested in Somer's book now that you're showcasing the recipes...I'll keep an eye on my library's website for when it becomes available there. I hope you're feeling great on the Abundance Diet!

Trixie said...

Does Somer have an instagram account?