It has been four months now since I blew my right knee out with a torn meniscus, ligament, and cartilage. This darn injury forced me to resign from an exciting job working as Body Person (political jargon for Executive Personal Assistant) to 2020 Presidential Candidate Marianne Williamson, and now every time I cook for a client it continues to swell. I'm simply not willing to let this injury interfere with my life a moment longer, so it's time for more drastic measures.
You may recall I did a vegan, hypo-allergenic, anti-inflammatory cleanse to miraculous success back in 2010 when I had a broken ankle. Three days into the cleanse the ankle swelling disappeared and never returned. As much as this foodie hates saying goodbye to some of her favorite foods, it’s time to admit that healing with food is far superior to surgery! Would any of you care to join me in cleansing and resetting your systems too?
So here’s what you can eat: Organic is best (since the purpose is to flush toxins out of our systems – not add more in). Stock your fridge full of fresh fruit, fresh raw or lightly steamed vegetables, beans and lentils, some seeds and nuts (pumpkin, sunflower and sesame seeds, and raw almonds, walnuts, cashews are all good), and gluten-free whole grains like brown rice, amaranth, millet and quinoa. Basically real, unadulterated whole foods. You can also have a vegan protein shake, rice or almond milk, herbs, spices and healthy oils. Drink tons of filtered or mineral water, green tea, or herbal teas to help eliminate the toxins from your system, and practice yoga breathing, sweat producing exercise and epsom baths to help.
What you can’t have: is meat, poultry, fish, soy, gluten, dairy, sugar, alcohol, coffee, black tea, or sodas. Also off limits are peanuts, macadamia nuts, corn, tomato, potato, eggplant, pepper, and all condiments. Week two you can add back in wild fish and organic free-range chicken and turkey, if you choose to.
I will be experimenting with certain herbs and spices that have anti-inflammatory properties to kick back up the flavor and hopefully make the cleanse more interesting to the palate.
Spicy-Lemon Roasted Carrots
Okay, this is not a lightly steamed vegetable and roasting does bring out the natural sugars (not processed sugar) in the carrots, but I am sticking to fruit and vegetables with the addition of anti-inflammatory spices to balance the cooking technique, so I’m not too worried about the slight transgression, and they are super tasty.
Servings: 4 Ingredients:
1 pound carrots, peeled
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 lemons, sliced
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne
Salt and pepper to taste (try to go sparingly on the salt)
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped for garnish
1). Preheat oven to 400° F. Hint: I like to spread a layer of heavy duty foil over a sheet pan and spray with nonstick spray to avoid a nasty clean-up afterward.
2). In a large bowl, toss the carrots, lemons slices, and spices until evenly coated.
3). Spread the carrots and lemons in an even layer over the sheet pan. Season to taste with salt and pepper and roast in the preheated oven until tender and beginning to caramelize all over, about 25-30 minutes.
Serving Suggestions: Serve as a side dish, snack, or chopped up in a yummy quinoa salad.
Heat to Eat Instructions: Vent lid of container and heat in microwave 1-2 minutes, or serve at room temperature (remove from refrigerator 30-45 minutes before serving).
Variations: This same preparation works well with cauliflower, asparagus, green beans, or broccoli.