As a “food person”, it’s something I’ve dealt with off and on for years. The overeating at events and the puffy-ness the next day. The flip-flops in my stomach that seem to be stress induced. Eating – and not eating – on photoshoots when you can’t control what you’re being fed or where it comes from. This weekend, when I was at the workshop with Helene and Clare, we ate like queens. Regularly scheduled meals – with bountiful food that was healthful and delicious – were readily available to us. We were working hard and everything was so great, you couldn’t help but eat. I also drank a five gallon drum of coffee over four days, which I can’t imagine has had any adverse effects on me, right?
Now that I’ve been home, something’s changed. Something’s not been quite right. I’ve been under the weather, digestively. Not just “I ate too much” but “something is amiss” under the weather. I’ve been “self-diagnosing all 37 of my ailments on WebMD” under the weather.
I’ve often wondered if I eliminated _____ from my diet, what would I feel like? Coffee and caffeine I’ve given up…and always come back to because I need the pick-me-up. The thought of giving up dairy – cheese, mostly – breaks my heart. Bread and pasta and, well, anything related are near and dear to me. Chocolate? That’s an easy one. Can I just give that up?
I feel better today than I have all last week and, truthfully, I’m pretty sure what I’ve been going through is a stomach bug. That having been said, I’ve been “living clean” for the past four days and I’d be silly to think that doesn’t have something to do with it. No caffeine, no soda, no alcohol, no gluten, no dairy. It’s been eye-opening as to how much of my diet is emotional and cravings driven. These past few days, I’ve been very calculated and thoughtful about what I cook. There’s been no eating out – just lots of fish, vegetables and soups. I’m going to gradually add some things back into the mix to see how I feel…and I’ll be sharing the results here. It’s a bit of a journey, really. Another level of being conscious about consumption.
When I first received a copy of this book, this recipe initially caught my eye because it’s loaded with all sorts of stuff I love – cauliflower & lots of Indian spices. Now, this recipe has taken on an extra shine as I’ve been toying with changing up how I eat. It’s completely vegan and so flavorful, you’d never know it. It’s from one of my now-favorite books of this year, Dr. Andrew Weil’s True Food. It’s full of really fantastic recipes that use sustainable, seasonal ingredient. Each recipe highlights ingredients for their restorative powers – this soup has turmeric and cauliflower in it, both of which are known for their anti-inflammatory benefits. While the recipe calls for caramelized onions as garnish (which would be delicious), I needed a bit of texture so I quickly toasted some pepitas in a dry pan – they were a nice textural elements to the soup.
Curried Cauliflower Soup – recipe originally from True Food by Dr. Andrew Weil – makes 10 cups
- Put the cashews in a blender and blend until finely ground. Add ¾ cup water and blend for 2 minutes. Pour the cashew mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl, pressing on the solids with the back of a spoon. Discard the solids.
- In a large pot, heat the olive oil over low heat. Add the onion and sauté until golden. Add the cauliflower, coconut milk, strained cashew milk, curry powder, turmeric, cumin, sugar, cinnamon, and salt as needed. Add enough water to cover. Bring to a low boil, reduce the heat, and simmer until the cauliflower is tender, about 10 minutes.
- Blend the soup with an immersion blender until the desired consistency is reached. If using a standing blender, allow the mixture to cool for 20 minutes. Pour the soup into the blender. Hold the lid down firmly with a clean, folded towel over it. Start on low speed and blend until the soup is smooth. Return to the pot and reheat if serving hot. Ladle into bowls and garnish with the caramelized onions and cilantro before serving.