Spring has sprung! My favourite time of the year! The smell of Jasmine is in the air, flowers are popping out from all corners and the trees seem to be standing a little taller and prouder than before.
For some reason, this winter felt like the longest I have ever experienced, and the hardest. Having spent the last 4 months in deep hibernation, physically, mentally and emotionally, I am so excited to be stepping back into the sunshine, and back into my body, which has been largely abandoned and neglected under throws of blankets and mountains of chocolate wrappers.
So when I came across Seasonal Cookery chef Daniel Jardim’s Spring Reboot Programme I decided this sounded just like the thing I needed – a Spring cleanse – and chance to get in touch with my this body-shaped thing of mine again!
Having done a vegetarian cooking course with Daniel a few months back – which I absolutely loved, I knew that if I was going to trust anyone with taking away things like caffeine and chocolate away from me, Daniel would be the guy for the job. I love how Daniel incorporates ethical eating into his cooking and a mountain of knowledge in the methods he uses, as well as incredible amount of gentleness and humour. Additionally, like myself, Dan is not a fan of fads or ‘quick fixes’, just try to mention the word ‘Superfood’ around him and see what happens!
My journey with Dry Space has been one of awakening and conscious living. I believe this extends far past alcohol, to other areas of my life, including that of the foods I choose to feed my body. Earlier this year I wrote an article on the harmful effects of sugar, but at this point I feel I need to look past sugar as the root of all evil, and look at the other items I consume on a day-to-day basis – namely wheat, coffee, dairy, meat and processed foods.
Having just kick-started with Part 1 (of 3) of the Spring Reboot programme I have decided to document the process and share some thoughts as well as delicious recipes I come across along the way.
Part 1/3: Day 1 – 7
Having jumped the gun slightly on day 1 by eliminating ALL food and immediately going into starving mode (I thought that is what a detox entailed??), Daniel quickly put me at ease in that the first week of the programme is all about gently and SLOWLY eliminating these things from our diet. Unlike a crash detox, this is all to be done gently over a period of time, which felt like a pleasant surprise to me.
Having currently made it to day 7 fairly easily – I wish I could tell you I feel like a unicorn riding over a rainbow, but I would be lying. Instead, I feel TERRIBLE. I feel like I have been hit by a bus. Head aches, body aches, sore muscles, sore legs, tiredness, foggy head. I have ALL the sickness feels!
In my check in with Dan today – it seems this could very well be the detox process my body is going through, which is crazy and makes me really think about the foods I am clearly ‘addicted’ to. Especially coffee…which is not something I have attempted to remove from my diet very often. Dan also mentioned that often ‘traumatic’ events could be stored in our bodies and ‘triggered’ in the detox process, and having recently gone through a traumatic incident very recently, I feel this might be an underlying factor as well.
It seems I have been taking the detox a bit harsher than the rest of the group and have been given the instruction to pull back slightly before the next phase of the detox to wait for my body to catch up. I am to drink one cup of hot water every hour and have a hot bath of Epsom salts and am holding thumbs that I am over the worst by tomorrow.
The one thing that has been keeping me going, however, is the excitement over experimenting with new foods and knowing the foods I am eating are not only NOURISHING my body but are having less of a harmful impact on the environment and animals. Radical self-love. It feels good.
A large part of the programme is trying out a host of delicious recipes and dishes which Dan posts along the way. These include helpful tips along the way such as soaking oats overnight in coconut milk and dried fruit for a simple and easy-to-digest breakfast, to making more intricate dishes fresh from scratch – such as Thai Curry pastes.
Here are some of my own variations of these recipes which I have made this last week. Delicious is an understatement. Why not give them a try 🙂
Moroccan Quinoa Salad
Coat butternut and onion with extra virgin olive oil and Moroccan spices (from Woolies) and pop in the oven until caramelized
Cook 1 cup quinoa with two cups water (soak before for a bit)
Chop up some mint leaves and avocado
Toss everything together with some salt, pepper, olive oil, balsamic vinegar
Meat, dairy, sugar free. And so delish 🙂
2 cups red beans (pre-soak over night and bring to boil on stove – only add salt at the end or this makes the beans tough to cook)
Half a chopped onion
Half a punnet of chopped cherry tomatoes
Chopped up olives, basil leaves and gerkins
Squeeze of lemon juice
Grate one small clove garlic
Toss together with olive oil and balsamic vinegar
Eat immediately or refrigerate (the flavour is even better the next day)
Bean and Olive Hummus
I got this one from Daniel’s Seasonal Cookery Facebook Page and it is AMAZING! I think I may have found my new favourite dish.
For the full recipe check out his website post here!
Follow Seasonal Cookery on Facebook or visit the website at www.seasonalcookery.co.za for more information on upcoming events and programmes.