What are you doing? Giving me the eye roll? A knowing nod? I personally recall my one attempt at The Master Cleanse, which after consuming quite possibly the most harrowing beverage of my life, ended mere hours later on the street in Brooklyn, as I ravenously downed pints of pre-cut watermelon and mango from the green grocer while the proprietor pretended not to look. Abstaining does not come to me easily.
Today is the 9th day of my two week cleanse. It involves avoiding booze, sugar, dairy, wheat, refined or processed anything, fried foods, caffeine, nightshades -all the good stuff.
So far, I am sleeping better, I can see sure signs of detox and I have energy(!) so I joined a gym-all fantastic results. The one bonus I am most grateful for, that I did not anticipate? It is not the weight loss, or gorgeous glowing skin or looking like Connie Britton….
I don’t know how I let this happen (uhh, pizza and tacos) but I somehow forgot how delicious and dare I say, downright mystical raw or very slightly cooked vegetables are. I live with a vegetarian. There are vegetables in our lives, on the regular. Yet somehow I lost the vegetable plot (sorry).
Life is busy and as thrilling as making dinner every night looks on Pinterest, we are lazy and fall into our roasted-cauliflower-side routines. We make as though Broccoli Rabe was the only green vegetable at our disposal. We lean on the usual, and in doing so we had become, vegetable complacent.
By making vegetables the main (ahem, only) event, I’ve been challenged to make constant use of their diverse textures and endless preparations. Oh, the epiphanies I’ve had (dirt made this! dirt and sun and rain!) Every time I open the crisper there is a riot going on! Salads and slaw were just the gateway. I’ve now tested the boundaries of what can be considered ‘pesto’. I crave fennel and beet crudo. I now have an intimate knowledge of Brassica oleracea. Can we talk of the subtlety and simplicity of a mess of greens….revelatory.
Don’t even get me started on radishes, we’ll be here all day.
Sure, the cleanse has some drawbacks, I
miss wine REALLY, REALLY miss wine and cocktails bourbon. I found myself daydreaming about the burger at Pasture once or twice. However, I am looking at Summer with the wide-eyed, expectant joy of a child anticipating a visit from Santa as my thoughts turn to tomatoes. I expect my first ‘mater sammich of the season will border on religious euphoria.
I intend to keep up this veggie romance after the cleanse is over and remain vegetable focused during the day, (an idea that Mark Bittman has written about extensively) not only for the benefits to my health but because they are there waiting for me to , and they are so very delicious.
Disclaimer: Sadly, I do not look like Connie Britton, that was apparently a vegetable induced hallucination.