YAY!!! Today is Day 7 of my 7-Day Spring Cleanse. Tomorrow is the Spring Equinox and I made it. I feel incredible and I am ready to start the new season feeling refreshed, energized, cleansed and invigorated!! I am so happy I did this, it is exactly what my body and my mind needed right now.
In celebration of Day 7, I took a 2-mile run this morning at the beach, then came home and did 30 minutes of yoga. For breakfast I made a super delicious fresh juice of pink grapefruit, ginger, carrot, strawberry and Persian cucumber. Such a perfect way to celebrate the final day of this cleanse!
For lunch today, I made this humble and simple-to-make warm lentil salad. It has become my favorite thing this week. I have made it a couple times and I have a feeling it is going to be on regular rotation around here for lunch.
It is so quick to make and it is loaded with flavors, colors and it is so satisfying. I like to barely wilt the baby spinach to take the chill off and so it isn’t totally raw, but I like it to retain some of it’s crunch. Feel free to leave it totally raw if you wish. I rarely add onion powder to things, but the spinach was just screaming for a little something special to give it just a hint of flavor on it’s own.
The salad has so many great textures and flavors from all of the different vegetables and the lentils make it really hearty. By serving this salad warm, I have found it to be a really comforting meal. Recently, I have fallen in love with the white balsamic vinegar from Trader Joes, on my friend Kathleen’s suggestion, so I have been using it a lot this week. It was the perfect way to finish this dish. If you don’t have that, regular balsamic would work nicely as would rice wine vinegar, champagne vinegar, etc.
If you have been following along with this cleanse, whether you are on day 7 or day 1, how are you feeling? I hope everyone has enjoyed following along with me on this cleanse, I hope I didn’t annoy folks too much on my Facebook or Instagram feeds, but it has been great for me to stay aware and honest with myself by sharing what I was eating. It was also so encouraging to see how so many people were inspired to do a cleanse of their own in honor of the changing season. It really is the perfect time for it. Thanks for following along. Happy Spring Everyone!!
[print_this]Warm Lentil Salad – Gluten-free + Vegan
makes one fairly large entree-sized portion (and then some) or 2-4 smaller servings
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 1/2 cups organic baby spinach, washed
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 organic onion, diced
1/2 organic red bell pepper, diced
2 organic celery stalks, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups organic mushrooms, sliced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
1 cup cooked lentils
2-3 teaspoons white balsamic vinegar (regular balsamic will work just fine too)
Salt and pepper, to taste
In a large pan over a medium-high heat, heat just 1-2 teaspoons of the olive oil. Add the baby spinach and onion powder and stir around till it is coated and cook just 2-3 minutes, for the spinach to just barely wilt. You want it to retain some of the crunch, just to soften it a tad. Add the spinach to your serving bowl.
Add the remainder of the oil, once heated add the onion, bell pepper and celery. Cook for about 3 minutes until they begin to get tender, add the mushrooms, garlic and the spices. Add a little salt and pepper to taste. Stir and cook until the mushrooms are cooked through, maybe another 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. When the mushrooms are close to being cooked, add the cooked lentils and toss it all around together and cook only long enough for the lentils to be heated up (if they aren’t already). You don’t want them to overcook and get mushy and smashed up.
Pour the lentil mixture over the wilted spinach and drizzle the vinegar over top. Use as much as you would like. Salt and pepper, to taste and serve warm. [/print_this]