Day 1: Black-Eyed Pea Gumbo w/Okra
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Day 1: Black-Eyed Pea Gumbo w/Okra

Yesterday was spent prepping for the food cleanse I am about to embark on! I was at a couple of grocery stores for about four hours. No. Big. Deal. A word of advice: the weekends are not meant to go grocery shopping. Why? It’s so chaotic out there with everyone doing the exact same thing!! Repeat after me: weeknight, weeknight, weeknight!

I never realized just how challenging it would be to find non-processed, free from sugar foods at the store. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love making things from scratch, but sometimes, it’s nice when you can save some prep time by using canned goods instead. Have you looked at labels recently? This shopping trip was definitely an eye opener. A lot of the canned goods had preservatives (duh, it is to be expected), but it’s kinda scary at how many they had. I couldn’t pronounce half of those chemicals: malto dextro, sodium ditrithiWHAT?!

Did you know that some brands of canned beans have sugar added to them?! Yup, that’s right! You would think for beans, you would just have the basic ingredients of: water, beans or salt. But, nope, there might be a surprise too! So, instead of going the canned route, I chose to buy my beans, lentils and grains in bulk, and ended up with: quinoa, green lentils, brown basmati rice, tabouleh, polenta, sesame seeds, garbanzo beans, black beans, and black-eyed peas. I don’t know about you, but it is oddly satisfying to me to know that I can prep&cook the lentils/beans myself rather than having it come out of a box/can pre-cooked.

black-eyed-pea

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Happy New Year 2013!
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Happy New Year 2013!

I cannot believe I am sitting here welcoming in another year. New beginnings, new everything. 2012 was one hell of a ride for me…a lot of ups, a lot of middle, and a lot of downs. I’m excited for what the new year has to offer me!

As you know, I am trying to recover from the flu, and so far, for the past week, it’s been kicking my butt. I was supposed to start off today by starting a 21 day cleanse from processed foods, but right now, that’s going to be pushed back till my immune system isn’t fighting so hard. I’m so so so tired, and all my body wants to do is sleep, while my mind is so over it! Ahhh

Once I am back to normal, I am going to start the healthy, non-processed food cleanse. You could call it a food-challenge for better eating, eating more vegetables and whatever comes out of the ground. It’s incredibly scary to read labels at the grocery store and not know what half the ingredients are!

I’m looking for recipes that are simple to prepare but hearty and delicious; recipes that have no processed products, no dairy products, no refined sugars, no meats. So, in a nutshell, going back to basics…have you ever done anything like this before? I would love to hear your suggestions & recommendations on recipes.