◊ Repentance

Dear mom,

In the spirit of Rosh Hashana forgiveness and my Esrei Yamim spiritual Cleanse, I’m sorry for “yelling” at you on our blog. Even though I wasn’t yelling.

You read too deep into my last letter… which you made pretty clear when I was home, carrying on about how I’m not nice in our internet communications blablabla. I didn’t intend to “yell.” I just wanted to express a tinge of annoyedness. So yeah – sorry. I didn’t mean it.

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Shlivovitz Shots… A Holiday Tradition

And really I so enjoyed being home for Rosh Hashana. The visit provided much needed familiarity and comfort. But my eye still hasn’t stopped twitching!! It’s been 12 days. I don’t understand.  Aside from the two days at the beach with you and dad and spending time with family and friends during the holiday, I admit that one of the best parts about being home was what was playing in the kitchen with you.

See… I did it. I said something nice.

But really, my visit home was such a luxurious trip. Our house is so full! Full of people, warmth and so much freaking stuff. You always brag, “If one of my friends ever needs to make a special trip to the grocery store, I tell them to come to my house first.”

You say the same thing about furniture, clothes and appliances. It’s sort of a problem. But your beyond-well stocked kitchen (8 varieties of sea salt, bulk pine nuts, unlimited chocolate chips!) almost made me want to move home. Such luxury! One of my favorite drawers in the kitchen is the Costco drawer (really we could call them all Costco drawers) that encases restaurant size rolls of saran wrap, foil and wax paper, and bulk zip lock bags. Jeez.

Costco Drawer

And I’m also so glad we got to go to the beach. It had been too long. How pathetic is it that it’s late September and I just got my first sunburn of the season? Stopping for boiled peanuts on the drive home was the perfect throwback.

My transition back to the “real world” hasn’t been as hard as I expected. I was dreading returning to the day-to-day grind of my life (is it possible for my days to be both uncertain and monotonous at the same time?) and feeling sad about leaving my comfy bed and childhood room. But I’ve had little time to think about all of that… I’ve kept busy with experiments and inventions in my own limited kitchen prepping for The Cleanse.

Last night, I used over half of the Costco bag of almonds you sent back with me. I made two versions of almond butter – in one I used raw almonds only and in the other I used almonds that I roasted with cinnamon and salt. They’re so different! I couldn’t fit all of the roasted almond butter into the tupperware I’d planned to use, so I left it in the vitamix and added a few of the dates and figs you sent back with me, unsweetened cocoa powder, oats, unsweetened coconut shreds, vanilla and walnuts. It was a total experiment. And guess what.

I broke the vitamix.

It just stopped working. How does that even happen?! I thought that the vitamix was made to handle anything! I’m hoping that it’s not broken… that it just overheated from too many nut pastes in one sitting. As we say in the south, it wo’ out.

The reason that I’m not too upset about it is because something amazing happened. Since the vitamix stopped working after the first 10 seconds my fudgy experiment, most of it got pureed, but a bunch of it was still left chunky. There are some walnut pieces and chewy oats that didn’t make it to the blade. And the result was so freaking yummy. So I added a bunch more oats and walnuts to make it even chunkier.

My favorite cookies in DC are dark chocolate salty oat cookies from Teaism, a restaurant in Dupont circle.. and these are the Cleanse version!The roasted almond butter binds all of the ingredients together, and the chunky remmnants add chewy deliciousness.

How is your cleanse going? Is dad sticking to it? I’m still waiting for the spiritual afterglow, but having too much fun eating and prepping. Pure food just feels better to eat! While trying to channel my gut/brain/spirit connection, I’m working hard not to force it…  waiting for my body to speak to my spirit, rather than leveraging my brain as an intervening interpreter. Dear brain, shhh.. stop stirring.

I’m sending you a few recipes that are all on the cleanse, including boiled peanuts because they are the perfect food for my homecoming nostalgia. And they’re on the cleanse (can you believe it?)!

I can’t wait to hear about your cleanse!

Love,
Shaina

Dark Chocolate Salty Oat CLEANSE Cookies

  • 1/2 c roasted almond butter
  • 4 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 tbs unsweetened coconut shreds
  • 2 pitted dates
  • 2 dried mission figs
  • splash of vanilla
  • dash (or 2) of cinnamon
  • 1/3 c water
  • sea salt
  • 1/3 c walnuts (chopped)
  • 1 c oats

Combine roasted almond butter, cocoa powder, coconut shreds, dates, figs, vanilla, cinnamon, sea salt and water in food processor and blend until chunky paste forms (no need to run processor until all the lumps are out). Then, stir in oats and chopped walnuts. Form into cookie patties and let set in fridge for a few hours before serving.

But remember these cookies are dense – while healthy, they’re definitely not low-cal. Remember when I made the Sweet New Year ladoo balls? You saw how much oil those produced. These are similar.

For RAW dark chocolate salty oat cleanse cookies, substitute roasted almond butter for raw almond butter. I can’t promise the same result that come from the nutty roastedness of the almonds, but I’m sure they’ll be tasty.

Roasted and Raw Almond Butters

  • Raw almonds
  • sea salt
  • cinnamon (optional)

 

Lay flat on cookie sheet and sprinkle with cinnamon and sea salt. Cinnamon brings out the sweetness of the nuts, but I only add a dash so that I can still use the butter in savory recipes. Place in oven for 20 minutes on 325 degrees, flipping the nuts at 10 minutes so that they don’t burn. Place in food processor, run until smooth, and hope for the best. For raw butter, skip the roasting step – Just place raw almonds, sea salt and cinnamon in food processor and puree until smooth.

Cleanse Almond Banana Treat

  • 1.5 tbs roasted or raw almond butter
  • 1 banana
  • cinnamon, coconut shreds and/or cocoa powder (optional)

Cut banana in half vertically and sandwich almond butter inside. Wrap with foil and bake in oven on 375 degrees for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with cinnamon, coconut shreds and/or cocoa powder and enjoy!

 

 

 

Boiled Peanuts

  • 1 pound unshelled GREEN peanuts
  • 1/4 c sea salt or kosher salt
  • 4 c water

optional seasonings: star anise, old bay, paprika

In the case of boiled peanuts, “green” means two things:
1. raw
2. fresh from the ground (not dried out)

The prep is simple. Place unshelled green peanuts, salt and water in large pot. Bring to boil. Maintain low boil for at least 3 hours or until peanuts are soft and mushy.

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6 thoughts on “◊ Repentance

  1. I’m three days into The Cleanse with not one lapse. The baked banana looks tasty. Has the Vitamix started working or is it “‘wo out'”?

  2. Pingback: Treats | The Cleanse

  3. Two things: 1. I freaking LOVE boiled peanuts. They’re my favorite! and 2. YOU BROKE YOUR VITAMIX?!?!?…is it better?! (my immersion blender did just overheat and is now all better; I’m hoping the same is true for you!)

  4. Pingback: Passover Ideas From Both of Us | cross counter exchange

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