In my efforts to cut down on cooking time during the week, I've been making most of my meals on Sundays and freezing them to eat throughout the week. It's been working surprisingly well, but yesterday I realized that I haven't eaten any fresh vegetables (outside of my green smoothies) in a while. Since Sundays are my stay at home and study days, I thought today might be an easy day to try getting some fresh fruits and veggies in. I've been inspired by all of the raw food blogs out there, and thought I could use a little extra mental clarity today while I studied. So I figured, why not try to go all raw for a day? Or at least mostly raw. To my surprise, it turned out to be one of the tastiest days I've had in a while.
Breakfast was a green smoothie as normal, but instead of using store-bought almond milk, I used the water that I had soaked sunflower seeds and almonds in overnight. And instead of half a banana, I used a whole one. Frozen pineapple and lettuce made up the rest of the smoothie.
I was heading to the gym, so I knew I needed something else in my stomach before I left. Unfortunately, there wasn't much to choose from since I hadn't been to the grocery store yet. So I had another banana and sprinkled it with flax seeds, raw sunflower seeds, and dried coconut. (I know...two bananas in one day!? This is not the norm for me! But just wait...there's another one coming.)
While at the gym, I wondered where that burst of energy was that people always talk about when going raw and having green smoothies. I guess my smoothie wasn't exactly up to par since it was more fruit than vegetables? Either way, there was no energy burst and I left the gym very hungry. But after a trip to Trader Joe's, Key Food, and the Fruit and Vegetable stand, I was ready to make some fabulous raw food. First off, a salad. Who can go wrong with that?
Remembering how much I used to love my Grandma's broccoli slaw (although hers included ramen noodles), I made a salad of broccoli and carrots, chopped spinach, dried cranberries, raw walnuts, and a tangerine. Plus a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I love the taste of walnuts and dried cranberries together!
My side dish was my attempt at pretending I'm a fancy chef. Cucumber and radish rounds with a mushroom, almond, and sunflower seed pate, topped with green peppers and pickled carrots. I can't lie...I was pretty impressed with myself. My boyfriend's verdict? "Has a good flavor, but too healthy for me." Yeah well...
After lunch, it was time to get back into study mode. I have two exams this week, and I think I've forgotten how to study. As is often the case when I get into schoolwork, my mind turned to munchies. Although this time I was still genuinely hungry. My lunch was delicious, but I didn't feel particularly full after.
I finished up the cucumbers, carrots, radishes, and cabbage I had pickled earlier this week, but there wasn't much left. This is where banana #3 came in. I don't think I've ever eaten three bananas in one day, but I knew I needed something a little heavier than vegetables to satisfy me at this point. I thought about baking a sweet potato, but didn't want to wait. So I cut up a banana and topped it with everything I could find: raw walnuts, raw sunflower seeds, flax seeds, dried cranberries, and dried coconut. Deja vu anyone? I was really wishing I had something else on hand I could top the banana with since I had already eaten those things earlier. Not that it didn't taste good...
This is when I finally got full. After I finished my banana medley, I realized I had succumbed to a case of My-eyes-are-bigger-than-my-stomach-itus. For the next few hours, it kept feeling like I was getting fuller and fuller. I considered not even having anything for dinner, but eventually my appetite came back. And I'm so glad it did because dinner was the best meal I've had in a long time!
It was simple, but made me so happy I think I might have to make another one to bring to work tomorrow. I used two pieces of lettuce as the base for my wrap, spread pureed canned chickpeas on top, then added pea shoots and carrots, sliced pickles (I cheated a little here on being super healthy because these pickles have high fructose corn syrup in them, but they were so good it was worth it), and a sprinkling of Eden Shake (a mix of sesame seeds, salt, and seaweed...I went over my budget to buy this last week, but it's my new best friend in the kitchen).
I'm getting ready for bed now, and I'm feeling pretty good. Eating raw was a lot easier (and tastier) than I expected. It definitely has me inspired to make more salads and lettuce wraps this week. I didn't get a chance to make any meals to freeze today, so the salads will actually be helpful until I have time to bake something (I have black bean and sweet potato enchiladas in mind).
Now....time to watch True Blood!