Dr. Oz’s 48-Hour Weekend Cleanse

Dr-oz-48-cleanse-breakfast-prunes

What are you doing this weekend?  How does this sound…..Detox.  Rejuvenate.  Heal.  That’s exactly what I did 2 weekends ago when I completed Dr. Oz’s 48-Hour Weekend Cleanse.  What started out as a skeptical very skeptical project, turned into a great journey with surprisingly, pretty good recipes! <— (I’m serious!  I’m still drinking the detoxing fruit drink today!)

When I read the recipe for breakfast – quinoa with chopped prunes, I thought… ok, ok, I love quinoa. But the prunes?! Let’s just say this skeptic is now a prune lover!  In fact, oatmeal raisin cookies will never be the same again!

Dr. Oz’s 48-hour cleanse is summed up perfectly on his website.  To avoid that thing called copyright infringement and save me some time, just go to that site for all the details and benefits of detox as well as the recipes.  I’ll share with you some pictures of the yummy recipes and my progress here instead!

Dr-oz-48-cleanse-breakfast-prunes-quinoaWhy should you try the 48-hour cleanse?

1 – It’s only 48 hours.  Do the math – 48 hours, minus sleep leaves you only 32 hours to follow some very simple recipes. You can do it!

2 – You may try a new ingredient, or two.  for me this was the fennel!  Not bad – tastes like black licorice before it’s cooked!

3- You may like the new ingredients!  for me this was prunes!  I feel old to say I like prunes but the truth is, these sweet, sticky gems are packed with antioxidants and a low glycemic index according to The World’s Healthiest Foods.

4 – Why not?  You have 363 other days in the year to eat whatever you want.  Why not test yourself with something new in 2014!?

BREAKFAST – Breakfast for both days was a quinoa dish with chopped prunes, ginger, nutmeg, milk and oil.  Think of this as oatmeal with warm fruit!

Dr-oz-48-cleanse-breakfast

DETOX DRINK– This was a blast of fruit – 1 cup pineapple juice, 1 cup pomegranate juice, 1 squeezed lemon and 3 cups water… Add some vodka and enjoy!  Ok, so no vodka – this is a detox weekend, remember!

Dr-oz-48-cleanse-drink-pom

LUNCH – Lunch was a smoothie.  Contents: almond milk, blueberries, flaxseed and banana.  <— see I told you it is easy!

SNACKS– I just love snacks.  Especially when followed with “You can consume as many of these snacks as you’d like throughout the day.”  Dr. Oz says eat, eat, eat!  There are many veggies on Dr. Oz’s list.  I had cucumber, celery and radishes (<— NOT a fan of those red crunchy things!) tossed in a lemon, olive oil and spice dressing.  Very Tasty!

Dr-oz-48-cleanse-snacks

DINNER – Up to this point in the day I was actually happy with Dr. Oz.  I didn’t think the recipes would be so easy AND good!  When I saw the grocery list for the dinner: vegetable broth soup, my skeptism grew.  Cabbage, a lot of cabbage and fennel.  Two things I #1 have never cooked with and #2 have rarely eaten (if ever!).

Dr-oz-48-cleanse-dinner-ingredients

So the chopping began.  All the veggies got chopped up and put in a large pot.  I never knew how long it would take to chop veggies!  After about 30 minutes of simmering, my tummy started to rumble and I was ready to eat!  It smelled amazing!!! But I had to wait… so I drank more of the detox drink! 🙂

Dr-oz-48-cleanse-dinner-soup

When dinner was ready, I had a very tasty (and healthy!) vegetable broth.  Think about the veggie broths you buy in the store.  They are packed with sodium and “extra stuff.”  This is the real deal.  Homemade vegetable broth!

Potato-broccoli-soup-broth

One thing to note about the soup is that one recipe of it makes enough soup for BOTH days.  I assumed it made enough for 1 like the rest of the recipes so I bought 2 of everything.  Luckily I LOVED the soup so much I made it again with the leftovers!

At the end of the 48 hours I can say I did feel better.  I’ve had the sniffles on and off with this weather and felt refreshed.  I didn’t feel tired but pumped for the week (ok maybe the “pumped” was for other foods!).  I think this detox is super easy and doable.  No crazy ingredients you won’t ever use again.  I will definitely do the Dr. Oz 48-hour weekend cleanse again this year as a way to reset and refocus.  Oh I also took advantage of my Groupon for hot yoga at Birkram and felt even better!

So if you don’t already have plans this weekend, consider doing this cleanse.  If you can’t this weekend, schedule it soon!  Your body and mind will thank you.

good morning fall, hello gluten-free!

GF pumpkin Cover

When I say pumpkin, you say pancakes.  PUMPKIN (me)… PANCAKES (you), PUMPKIN… PANCAKES!!!

What’s better than homemade pancakes on a Saturday morning?  That’s easy –  homemade pumpkin pancakes that are gluten-free and tasty!  I just love fall.  Something about the cool air (ok, Florida status – 70 degrees is cool for me), the smell of a fireplace (yes, on those 60 degree nights) and the fall flavors are just so, perfect!

I’m on (another) healthy food adventure and have been experimenting with gluten-free stuff.  I do have to side bar here and say, not everything I make turns on yummy.  I’m not the kitchen wonder woman and I have really tough critics. Some things make it to the trash before anyone tries it and others as soon as people take a bite.  Most desserts I make do turn out pretty darn good if I do say so myself, but meals on the other hand, that is definitely a challenge for me and sometimes a scary venture for the recipients of the food.  In fact, I’m about to start a paleo challenge and I couldn’t think of what I wanted to eat that was on the list so I am literally eating canned pineapple.  Out of the can.  As we speak.  Yes.  Out.Of.The.Can.  (which I put in the fridge because I like cold pineapple…. I’m sure there’s a warning label about that somewhere)  I don’t think canned pineapple is part of the paleo “cave-woman” diet but it’s the closest I could come.  Definitely not Kitchen WW tonight!  OH MAN I really want some Publix Chocolate Cookie Quary Low-Fat Frozen Yogurt that is sitting in my freezer right now… Focus Cassie, focus….

Back to the Pumpkin Pancakes (crap – now I want these too!)

GF pumpkin ingredientsThis Gluten Free Pumpkin Pancake recipe was inspired by the fact that I had left over pumpkin.  I made Pumpkin Cookies with Icing recently and shared them with my coworkers.  They were a huge hit!

This recipe is gluten-free and actually passed the taste test of one really tough critic.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (the 100% real stuff)
  • 1/3 cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp. pure maple syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs (protein packed yeah!!!)
  • 1 cup GF baking flour or oat flour (process 1 cup of oats in a food processor until fine)
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp allspice

GF pumpkin dry mix

Step 1:  Mix all the dry ingredients in a medium bowl with a whisk – flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice

GF pumpkin wet mix

Step 2: Mix melted coconut oil, pumpkin, milk and syrup in a blender until combined.  Add vanilla and eggs.

Step 3: Now combine the wet and dry mixes until just combined.

GF pumpkin mix

I was surprised at how thick the batter was, but this is normal.  Now all you have to do is plop these on a skillet!  I added extra cinnamon to one side just to give a little more flavor.  The key to this is the timing.  You want them cooked but not over cooked.  The batter is very gross raw.  I set a timer for 3 minutes on one side and the 1.5-2 minutes on the other.  They came out amazing!  I used dark amber pure maple syrup and a little almond butter on top.

GF Pumpkin cooking

This is a great use of left over pumpkin – or an excuse to open another can.  Next time I will probably make this batter the night before and save some morning time to relax with my cup of joe.  Now I have finished my can of pineapple, which I am slightly regretting admitting I ate canned pineapple.  Directly out of the can.  That I purposefully chilled.  But I ran 5 miles tonight and really didn’t feel like making anything this late.  So thank you Mr. Can.  And thank YOU readers.  I am too tired now to eat that frozen yogurt so you have spared me! 🙂

Bon Appetite!

Boulder, Co: Mile High Travels

Good morning! As I am writing this post, I am sitting in the JFK airport – Jet Blue terminal. I just got off a 3.5 hour flight from Denver… the red eye flight (1am!). If you ever wondered why they call it the “red eye” flight, wonder no longer. I look like a hot mess, and yes, my eyes are red. I got an eye cover up masky thing on the flight and boy did that come in handy! – Until I realized I slept through snacks! – pretty much the best part about flying. Then I realized I normally sleep at that time so probably a good thing I didn’t have a snack.

Analysis of my state of being: tried? – exhausted, hair? – static mess, eyes? – burning, breakfast? – it’s only 5am in Colorado so I think I’ll wait a little, head? – ouch, Starbucks? – nowhere to be found (I asked)….. HA yes, I’m sorry anyone who makes eye contact with me, this is true jet lag.

boulder road tripHowever, I’m remembering the last 5 days of my life and thinking… man I am lucky! I might be completely exhausted but it was-so-worth-it!!! I spent the last 5 days in Colorado. Colorado in the “summer.” Who cares about the exhaustion, headaches from altitude and red eyes that look like I’ve experienced all the mile high city has to offer. I mean, I got to spend the past few days visiting my step sister and traveling all around one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen, the Colorado Rockies!!

boulder activities bike YThe adventures began in Boulder, Co. If you’ve been catching the new lately, you’ve probably heard about the Boulder County Flood that happened last week. The damage from the insane rain was, well, insane, for lack of a better word this early in the morning.

All trails were closed, streets destroyed and houses completely evacuated because they were under water. Luckily, Susan’s house (my step sister) was fine but not all units in her complex made it out unscathed.

Something really awesome was how the community was reacting to this tragedy. Bakeries, like Piece, Love & Chocolate, had special “flood relief cupcakes” where a portion of the “mudslide” dessert went to the relief efforts. Stores were having round-up days where you can round your purchase to the nearest dollar and that goes to the relief. Sprouts Farmer;s Market was doing this.

I also got to visit the Y in Boulder Valley which was also aiding in the relief efforts. The Y has partnered with the American Red Cross to be a shelter! So many people came in and out of the Y with supplies and smiles on their faces. Volunteers were actively engaged and everything was so organized. Without people and organizations like the Y and the American Red Cross, the flood victims would have nowhere to go.

Here’s a few pictures I snagged after my workout. — Note: working out in over a mile above sea level was tough!

boulder ymca

Colorado is absolutely beautiful!! If you read my Chicago post, you know that’s one of my top fav cities. Well, Colorado is definitely one of my top fav states (in the summer).

I arrived Thursday afternoon and adventured through downtown Boulder where I saw the really cool biking system in the picture above. EVERYONE bikes. I know that’s a generalization, but I think it’s appropriate. I think everyone owns at least 1 bike and people are biking all day long. It’s wonderful!

Friday morning, Susan and I hit a HOT YOGA class. Yes, Florida girl here goes to cooler weather, freaks out about the cold and finds herself in a hot yoga class… Floridian problems…

boulder red rocksThen it was off to ASPEN for the weekend!!! We loaded the car with my overstuffed suitcase and 2 of Susan’s friends, Jen and Erin, and hit the road. Susan and Erin were doing a half marathon trail ride and Jen and I were along for the ride. We stopped by the Red Rock Amphitheatre!! This was absolutely amazing. The views were breathtaking, if you didn’t already lose your breath from the hike and altitude combo. 🙂

Then we passed though Independence Pass which is a really pretty road that is only open in the summer.

Let me side note here and say I have been to Colorado a few times. In the COLD-FREEZING-TONS-OF-LAYERS-REQUIRED-WINTER. It was so refreshing to visit in September, see the leaves starting to change and wear shorts (well only one day).

boulder foodI can’t forget about the food. I ate too much. But it was-so-worth-it. There are so many healthy choices, local, fresh choices. Frozen yogurt from the Boom Bar Yogurt was yummy and dessert from Whole Foods was a fun treat too. I had pizza from Pizzeria Locale and it was AMAZING. Definitely a must visit place in downtown Boulder.

In the little town of Basalt, I ate the yummy eggs, potatoes and sausage you see here. The place was called Bernard’s Cafe and guess what, Bernard was a cute little old guy! Sorry I don’t have a ton of food pictures. In the moment of all the goodness, the camera was the last thing on my mind!

Friday-Sunday we spent in Aspen, then Monday I had a chance to explore Boulder. I went to the Y, to yoga (again) and just enjoyed the weather before my 1am flight to JFK!

I must say, Colorado exceeded all expectations and I can’t wait to go back and explore more, in the summer/warmer than cold seasons, of course!

I land in Jax around 11am and vaca is officially over! Until next time Colorado!

Thank you so much Susan for making my trip awesome!!