A Slow Deep Kiss: The Pleasure of the Spring Cleanse
While it seems counter-intuitive to write about the happiness of eating less in a blog devoted to the pleasures of food, today I’m all about the ecstasy of the spring cleanse. It’s true I don’t exactly look forward to my annual digestive ablution, but now 4 days into this year’s ritual, I must admit to feeling suddenly as if the sparkle has returned to the sky—and it makes me a little giddy.
My cleanse focuses on
eating less and paring down ingredients to eat simply: Breakfast might be an organic soft-boiled egg
with a slice of whole grain toast brushed with good olive oil and eaten with steamed
spinach. Dinner might be a sprouted corn
tortilla with organic beans, chopped red onion, tomato, and lettuce topped with
a squeeze of lime. When I eat these
foods, I remember the vibrancy, the utter life force of food.
|Blueberry Pomegranate Smoothie w/Flax Seed|
The answer lies, I think, in lightening up. The cleanse I do is simple and ultimately quite gentle: I cut out meat, sugar, and anything out of a box, can or bag, and take Flor*Essence tea. Why punish myself for over-indulgence in braised lamb shanks and garlic mashed potatoes that warmed a cold February night or the cream-laden shrimp and grits I made just three weeks ago or French bread gilded with butter anytime, when I honestly enjoyed every bite as it entered my mouth? Instead, I think of cleansing as sweeping out the cobwebs, doing a little internal dusting, and resetting my taste buds for the coming season of tangy garden tomatoes, peppery arugula, and sweet, milky corn.
|Eating the basics|
|Home-made Trail Mix|
Without a breakfast menu bogged down by fried eggs, toast with butter and jam, fried bacon and juice, my palate is free to relish the simple taste and texture of a buttery yolk on good crusty bread. I enjoy eating without the urgency or anticipation of gluttony, without the need to eat this thing to get to that: Less is more.
|If a good meal is like great sex, a spring cleanse|
cleanse is like a slow deep kiss:
If a good meal is like great sex, a cleanse is like a slow deep kiss: you savor the pleasure of the moment without thinking what will come next. So for a few weeks each spring, I indulge myself and allow a little light and air back into the kitchen. Food is eaten raw, fresh, or juiced. And I drink plenty of water and let myself linger over what the plate provides.
Since pleasure is my manifesto, it seems natural to take a few weeks enjoy food in its freshest form. It’s not punishment, but a way to rejuvenation my body and my palate for the coming year!