Bon Appetit-inspired Food Lover’s Cleanse

I could talk about all that cheese, chocolate and wine I consumed over the holidays. But why dwell?

Inspired by Bon Appetit’s Food Lover’s Cleanse – I’m kicking of 2012 heathy-style.

This is not a diet. Diet is an ugly word. This is a food lover’s cleanse. You know, for people who like food and the way good food makes them feel.

When I came across this 2-week cleanse I was pretty excited by some of the recipes, but I thought I’d try making my own version. I’ll incorporate the main guidelines from Bon Appetit’s Cleanse but add in other meals I’ve been meaning to try and put a summer twist to some of their recipes.

Truth be told, healthy food excites me. Flavorful healthy food, that is. Maybe it’s the warm Sydney weather, but I’m pretty stoked to kick off 2 weeks of ultra-good-for-you eating.

You ready? (They still allow you chocolate, a couple of glasses of wine, and the occasional piece of goat cheese.) We can totally do this. Let’s do it!

The rules, a brief summary (read more about it and portion sizes here):

– Minimize dairy – but natural yogurt is all good.
– Take a break from refined grains, bread and pasta. Whole grains are encouraged (whaddup quinoa?)
– Eat at least one salad a day, and make sure vegetables and fruits take up half your plate at most meals.
– Make at least one day a week meat free. I’ll be going for plant proteins and fish for the majority of the time.
– Drink lots of water. (But you knew that.)
– Limit caffeine – if you have to have coffee cap it at 1 cup.
– Use natural sweeteners, like honey and agave.
– Limit of 4 alcoholic drinks in a week.

Not too bad, right?

First up is a Thai salad adapted from Theresa Cutter’s recipe at

Raw Thai Salad
(makes 1 large serving)

– 1 Lebanese cucumber
– 1 carrot
– Handful of rocket/arugula or baby spinach
– 1/2 red capsicum/pepper, finely sliced
– 2 spring onions, chopped
– 6 snow peas, sliced in half lengthwise
– 1/2 red chili, finely sliced (optional)
– Handful Thai basil,chopped
– Handful mint leaves, chopped
– 1/4-1/3 cup of diced firm tofu

– Juice from 2 limes
– 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
– 1 teaspoon fresh grated fresh ginger
– 2 teaspoons soy sauce
– 1 teaspoon honey
– 1 teaspoon all-natural peanut butter

Use a  vegetable peeler or mandolin to slice all the vegetables into long noodle like strips. Combine all the ingredients then place into a large serving bowl.
Mix together the dressing and pour over the salad just before eating.

If you’re doing a cleanse for the new year and blogging about it, shoot me a comment. I’d love to see what you’re doing.