3 DAY SOUP + JUICE JUS by JULIE CLEANSE: Day 1 Diary

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Today I started my second cleanse. Why do you ask? Wasn’t the first time enough? Well, let me tell you, this time it’s different. This time I am on a soup and juice cleanse. I am a huge soup fan, I grew up in Russia eating soup for lunch almost every day. I remember my grandma making a big pot of soup over the weekend and it would last us all week. That’s why when I got an opportunity to try this soup and juice cleanse I couldn’t say no.

Before I go into the details of my 1st day of cleansing (please make sure you follow my Insta story for updates throughout the day) I want to let you know that there is a cool and healthy 2017 Plan For a Happy & Healthy Body on JusByJulie.com. You can sign up for email updates, browse other people’s resolutions, and even get a checklist (you know you want to) to help you stay on the healthy track! I got mine already 🙂

This day started early, my husband works out of Chicago one day a week, and today was the day. He takes an early morning train out of Milwaukee, which means our alarm clock starts going off around 4.30 am. I drive Sam to the train around 5.30, and stop at my neighborhood Starbucks on the way home to get a venti coffee. Coffee is normally allowed on the cleanse, just black, no cream or sugar. I don’t have a problem with that, I just need to stay awake.

I leave for work at 7 am. Around 8.30 I drink my first juice – Sweet Spin (140 calories). Work was busy today, and I didn’t get to eat my first soup till noon. However I manage to finish my coffee and drink about 3 bottles of water. My rule of thumb after finishing a juice is refilling the bottle with water, and drinking that. Needless to say I peed on the hour every hour.

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I finally have my Split Pea Soup, and it turns out to be way more filling than expected, while containing only 140 calories.

I save my Pomegranate Juice for 3 pm, it is hands down my favorite juice of all. The spicy kick and whopping 90 calories make it a perfect afternoon pick me upper.

After that the rest of my day is full of more meetings and emails. I don’t leave the office till 6.30 pm, heading to the train station to pick up Sam.

We get home around 7.15 pm, and while my husband enjoys a couple slices of homemade pizza, I heat up my Carrot Ginger Soup (120 calories).

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And here I am not writing this post, working through yet another bottle of water. I am feeling great. I wish I would’ve made it to Zumba, but oh well. My fitbit reads 8100 steps, and I am going to try my hardest to make it to 10k before I go to sleep!

I saved Butternut Squash Soup and Chia Berry Juice in my freezer for a rainy day.

So, how was your day?

Whole30 Week 2 Recap

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Week 2 of Whole30 is over and I am pretty sure Sam lost at least 10 pounds by now. You are not allowed to step on the scale at all while on this diet, so I am not certain, but people at work have been telling him he looks different, and I’ve noticed the changes too! Meanwhile I am here eating watermelon, and I can’t stop!

This week was definitely easier than the last, at least for me. I think the biggest part of it was me going to Costco last Monday to do some grocery shopping. Costco always makes me feel better, and I made sure to stock up on meat to last us for the next 2 weeks if not more.

I mentioned that I will share a few things that I bought for Whole30. So here goes: eggs, chicken, beef, bacon, salmon, bananas, watermelon, carrots, dates, avocados, peaches, broccoli, snap peas and a whole lot of nuts! I can’t emphasize how incredible it is to have this membership, and how much easier it is to get all my shopping done in one place.

For this week’s post I also asked my friend Kate to share her experience with Whole30, she was the one who got us all eating right after all 😉

My name is Kate and I began Whole30 on July 6. I am almost half way through with my first 30 days and I feel amazing! I work 40 hours a week and am a busy mom so planning and meal prep has been critical for me. 

I love the meals and how I’ve been feeling while on this program. It really feels like a lifestyle change. Plus now I have enough energy to workout again!!! 

I am not the best in the kitchen, but I have found the recipes to be really delicious and pretty easy. While making Clarified Butter I did start a small fire and burn my arm. So for now I will be buying my Clarified Butter (ghee) from Trader Joes! 

My favorite recipe so far has been one that I made with my Mom (she is also on Whole30). We made Romesco Garlic Shrimp with Zucchini Noodles. We plan on making it again for an upcoming family dinner. 

A few of my favorite things this week: 

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Also the app TwoGrand (soon to be YouFood) has kept me accountable! I love checking off my daily goals and sharing my food photos. 

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Now to share some of my favorite recipes with you!

Saturday night I made this Chicken Apple Orange Spinach Salad for dinner, and Sam said that it has probably been his favorite so far.

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2 chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces

2 tbsp olive oil

1 apple diced or sliced (whatever you prefer)

1 orange peeled and diced

1 cup spinach (or more if you like spinach)

Salt and Pepper to taste

Turmeric to taste (it will make the chicken yellow, so Sam calls this Yellow Chicken Salad)

1. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in the pan, add chicken and spices and cook until done.

2. Meanwhile prepare your spinach and your fruit and mix in a bowl.

3. Add chicken, mix well and serve.

Beef and Turkey Meatballs was another meal I cooked up for us. I’ve been craving meatballs way before we started Whole30, so getting to finally making them is a huge accomplishment.

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1 lb ground beef

1/2 lb ground turkey

2 eggs

Rosemary and Parsley to taste ( I grow those two in my very very small garden, seriously it’s two pots, but I was really excited to use them in this recipe!)

3 tbsp flex seed (now this has a weird taste, and if you’ve never had it I suggest you skip out on it, or start with 1 tbsp).

1 medium onion diced

Salt, pepper and garlic to taste

1. Preheat oven to 375.

2. Mix all ingredients in the food processor.

3. Scoop onto a foil or parchment lined pan with a spoon (I use an ice cream scoop!)

4. Bake for 10 minutes, flip and bake for 10 more.

Makes about 32 meatballs.

For the sauce:

1 can Organic Tomato Paste (I use the Costco brand)

1 Roma tomato diced

3 small peppers diced

Italian seasoning to taste

Mix all the ingredients in a small sauce pan, heat for about 5 minutes.

And finally, I want to share this Cashew Date Craisin Bites recipe. I got the idea from Lee of Fit Foodie Finds.

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25-30 dates

1 cup cashews

1 cup craisins

Pulse all the ingredients in the food processor until well mixed, then shape into bars, or roll into bite-size balls. These can be dangerous though, because they are pretty much all I want to eat now.

Well I hope you liked this week’s update, I can’t wait to share more!

My Kombucha is Square

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As some of you, Instagrammers, have noticed, I started brewing my own kombucha! Wait what? We all thought I hated that stuff!

Back in the day, when I still lived in Russia, I had some American friends over, who had never seen kombucha before! So when they saw it their eyes grew bigger, and bigger, and I think it’s worth mentioning that I didn’t know the English for Kombucha (it was over 10 years ago! give me a break 😉 ) and in Russia we call it Tea Mushroom (чайный гриб). I also have memories of it being nick named the Happiness Mushroom! I guess it’s supposed to bring happiness and good luck to your household! Hey, okay with me 😉

A few years ago when I still nannied for a family in New York City, we were doing kombucha as well, but I hated it. I guess the childhood memories made a deep deep impact! I do remember killing one scoby, but the second one lived 🙂 And I even remember sharing it with someone on freecycle!

What is scoby? SCOBY is an acronym for symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast. Other good examples are Ginger beer plant, kefir, mother of vinegar, sourdough – you can read more about it on Wikipedia!

I don’t know what made me try Kombucha a few weeks ago when I was out and about with a friend, I don’t know what made me like it, what made me ask for it on freecycle, what made me drive to Apple Valley after work to get a scoby, but I did all that, and now I have a square kombucha living in my kitchen, if you ask my husband, he’ll tell you that it’s something that should be in a science classroom!

Now everyone brews their kombucha differently, but here is what I do, and I learned that from Jade – the person who shared her scoby with me:

Bring three quarts of filtered water to a boil, and then add a cup of organic sugar and continue to boil for 5 minutes. Then take the pot off the burner and steep four bags of organic tea (2 black & 2 green) for 10 minutes. Then pour the mixture into a gallon size jar and let it cool to 98 degrees (body temp).  Once it reaches that temp add the starter (the liquid that the scoby is in), give a little stir, then add the scoby. Cover it with a white flour sacking cloth, and let it sit for 7-14 days. Metal should never touch the kombucha, so no metal utensils or anything!

I mix green and black tea when I brew my kombucha, it’s no specific brand, just something I pick up at the grocery store, or Marshall’s/TJMaxx – they have great tea variety (sometimes!), I also use regular white sugar, and then it all lives in a square glass jar I bought at Target for $5.99, that’s why it’s actually square! 

Of course we’ve all heard stories about some woman in Iowa, who supposingly died from it, but yet again some people say it helps cure cancer. I know one thing – everyone’s result is going to be different, so give it a shot, and see for yourselves!

Now let’s talk about what I like to put in my kombucha! Let me make it clear though, all the additives go in the glass, not the scoby jar!

Lemon juice has so far been my top choice!

I did try adding spinach/cucumber juice to it, and it tasted okay, but I wasn’t a fan! 

I do like to add cranberry to it though! That is super yummy!

Let me know if you like kombucha, tried it, hate it, whatever your opinion is – please DO tell! 

Happy Monday everyone! 

Xo,

Z

PS. If you are in the Twin Cities area and would like a scoby, let me know!

 

My Adventures in Juicing

Yes, dear readers, I fell a victim to one of the most popular trends that can take place in your kitchen – juicing! Having watched some documentary on Netflix, I think it was called Hungry for Change, I started researching and googling different juicers everywhere I went! I kid you not, I tweeted about juicers, stalked people on Instagram, asking them which one they use, etc etc

And finally I got one! A GE 800 watt Juice Extractor:

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This juicer usually runs for about $50, and is considered a good started juicer. I bought it for $25, at the Salvation Army Target Overstock in the Warehouse District in Minneapolis (let me know if you need directions 😉 )

There were two juicers there at the time, this one, and another, I forget the brand, but it cost $60! Knowing me, and my husband, who didn’t want to spend the extra money, I got the cheaper one, besides it came with the box, which made me trust it more! I also took it all out, including the instructions, read everything 3 times over, including 20+ reviews on the internet (which went from great juicer to this product sucks) and headed for the check out!

Let me be honest with you, so far it’s great! I am not going to say that it’s the best $25 I’ve ever spent, no I don’t think so, but I got myself a pretty good deal, a great juicer, and a healthier diet thanks to it!

Of course when you buy a product like this your first urge is to juice everything in the house, even the foods that don’t go in there! Hold your urge! Talk to friends or read blogs about juicing, then start your process!

Here is what I learned after 1 week of everyday juicing:

– Never ever juice a grapefruit!

– Tomato juice is actually pink, not red!

– One cucumber contains about 12 oz of juice!

– Carrot juice is neon orange and I love it!

– One 8 oz glass of fresh juice will last you up to 5 hours with no food!

– There are way more people who juice on Instagram than I thought!

– Juicing is considered a part of raw foods movement

– Some people recommend to detox using fresh juice 3 days out of the month, every month!

– I have been doing dishes more regularly with the juicer!

– It’s better to juice into a tall glass than a short glass (just because it’s easier to prevent spilling)

– You can use left over pulp for muffins or combine it with cat/dog food!

There is so much to learn about this, and even though I sound sarcastic at times, I am absolutely happy with my new toy! Sam on the other hand isn’t, he says it’s gross! And asks me not to let him smell it 🙂

Now about the juices! I have been trying to document each and every one of them on Instagram last week, to make it easier for me when I was going to blog about it! I think it worked:

Carrot and apple juice (about 2 apples and 4 carrots for 8 oz)

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Orange, carrot and kiwi juice (I can’t remember how much I used of each fruit now, but I know for sure there was only 1 kiwi!)

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Cucumber, celery, tomato (loved this combo, and cucumber juice alone!)

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Pineapple, celery juice

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Have you ever tried juicing? If so, how did you like it?

Have a great day everyone,

Xo,

Z

Russian Blini (Crepes) Recipe

 

Being Russian doesn’t mean that you are oh-so-good at cooking Russian food! I’ve mastered a lot of it. Making soups and stews is a piece of cake! I could make salads (or as one of my friend’s referred to them “cold casseroles”) every day. But Russkie Blini have always been a challenge for me. Every time I’d try to make them, they’d turn out as pancakes! And if you know the difference between a pancake and a crepe, well – that’s a big fail! The worst was when they’d turn out as something in between crecake? or maybe panpe? But last Sunday I feel like I’ve conquered it, and all I needed to do was to follow my aunt’s recipe, which is tried and true. It’s also no family secret, that’s why I am sharing it with you!

Here is what you’ll need:

2 cups of flour

3 eggs

2 1/2 cups of milk (you can cheat here and divide the given amount in half and substitute milk with water)

1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
Mix all of the above ingredients in a bowl (you can cheat and use a mixer, I won’t tell anybody!)
Then add 1-2 tbsp oil into batter.
And you are ready to FRY!!!
Sam likes his crepes with syrup, but I am more creative – I love them with Nutella and bananas, or strawberries, or blueberries…
Have an awesome Thanksgiving everyone and Black Friday, if you do that, of course!
I’ll be back on Friday with a new post for you!
Cheers,
Z

If I am going to be raptured, I want to at least be fed!

When there is nothing to blog about, you blog about cooking, or as I like to call it blooking (blogging + cooking, get it?) Today is also the famous rapture day, and I am sure you’ve heard enough jokes about it, so I am going to pass. But let me tell you that this morning Sam and I did a test “Will I be raptured” and well, we didn’t get into the lucky number! So that’s why I am cooking! Dinner today consisted of korean carrots (brought from a store, so I am not taking any credit for that!), chicken and mushrooms and Turkish doughnuts (I still don’t like Turkey, even though those doughnuts turned out pretty good!)

Chicken and mushrooms 

1. Stir fry chicken and mushrooms, use butter! There can never be too much butter! I love you, Julia Childs!

2. Add milk and spices

3. Pour everything into the casserole dish, sprinkle with cheese and bake for about 15 min.

4. All done and ready to be consumed!

Turkish Doughnuts 

Remember the fry party I went to? Well I found this recipe, but we never got around to making those, and ended up eating ice cream. So I finally decided to give them a shot today.

1. Combine flour, cinnamon & sugar. Put 3 eggs into warm water for 3 min.

2. Melt butter in one cup of water and 1 tbsp sugar over medium heat.

3. Add flour to the melted butter, beat, then add eggs, one at a time, and beat with a wooden spoon!

4. Shape the batter into doughnuts!

5. Oh, boiling and bubbling!

6. And finally done!

Dunkin Dounuts is still my fav place for doughnuts!

 

Mimosas for International Women’s Day

Tomorrow is another day off in Russia. International Women’s Day, the history of which goes back to early 1900.

Back in USSR the traditional gift for women was an acacia flower, also known as a mimosa.

It’s also mentioned in Bulgakov’s Master and Margarita. When Master first meets Margarita she is holding mimosas, an ugly, disturbing flower, as they were described by the main character.

But I want to talk about a different kind of mimosas – the ones you can drink! It’s a holiday after all!

3/4 cup champagne and 1/4 cup your favorite OJ and viola! Don’t forget to decorate! I am having these at my house tomorrow night!