I’ve been feeling pretty under the weather the past few days. Could be from the subzero wind chills. Could be from running in the cold (but not in the subzero wind chills — come on, I’m not that crazy). Could be from too many super fudgy brownies and homemade In-N-Out burgers and fries. But from forehead to belly, I’m beat. I want to throw in the towel. I just want to curl up and knit while I watch a day’s worth of Daria. And detox, in my own way, by starting off the day with yogurt and tea.
You know how I said last week that I missed simplicity? Seriously. I can’t write a post about the bagel I defrosted, toasted, and devoured with cream cheese. That was my “brunch” most days last week. My eating schedule has been all off — I’m sure that’s also part of the problem. I have no excuse for having dinner ready at 9:30 at night when I’m not running 7:30 track workouts. I also have no excuse for eating bagels almost every day, nor for being too lazy to chop up the romaine in my fridge. Seriously, Sarah. You couldn’t have just made a stupidly easy side salad with that chicken parm last night?
And Saturday. Oh, Saturday. Valentine’s Day. I shoveled in a couple slices of very sad semolina bread (which had stuck to my pizza peel the day before and cooked more like a fougasse on my baking stone than a puffed up, gorgeous loaf) with peanut butter and banana before heading out on a strangely grueling 12.5-mile run in the morning. And after I had defrosted under a hot shower, all I wanted was a bacon, egg, and cheese on a giant sesame bagel. And so it was. And then those burgers and fries (my boyfriend makes the best In-N-Out burgers outside California — who wouldn’t want that for Valentine’s Day??) — and beer. And pickles don’t count as a vegetable, regardless of what I will very likely tell you in another post. Well, maybe jarred supermarket pickles don’t count as vegetables. Homemade kosher dills and sour pickles are another story. For another time.
No, today we’re getting back to simplicity. Today we’re getting back to good health. Today we’re healing the belly so we have strength to face the frozen, shortened week.
This isn’t a recipe. This is a suggested list of things to throw in a bowl and enjoy. Greek yogurt for probiotics, protein, and tang. Clementines for vitamin C, fiber, and sweetness. Bittersweet chocolate for antioxidants, depth, and decadence. Pistachios for even more protein, healthy fats, and a bit of crunch. And a drizzle of honey, to heal inflammation and help tame the tang of the yogurt.
It’s also, despite being a cold bowl of food, really lovely on a frigid day — especially with a cup of tea. It reminds me of the Mediterranean. It tastes like what I might eat while sitting in sunshine at a cafe on the Bosphorus. Or the Greek isles. Or maybe a little spot in Haifa.
Yep, forget winter. Forget aching sinuses, nagging coughs, heavy stomachs. I’m looking in the mirror and telling myself I’m not getting sick. This is sunshine in a bowl. Sunshine heals. Sunshine comforts. Sunshine reminds us that spring is only a little over a month away. And sunshine is pretty tasty, too.
Greek Yogurt with Clementines, Chocolate, and Pistachios
This is for just one serving, and is merely a suggested amount of ingredients. If I wasn’t posting it, I wouldn’t have even weighed or counted, but would have just thrown in a handful of this and that. Throw in more chocolate! Peel up two clementines! Go to town! Clover honey is a basic, but here I went with a Turkish honey I picked up at Trader Joe’s last week. If I have the choice, I’d always rather have something with a more complex, wildflower flavor than clover. It also stands up to the strong tang of the yogurt quite nicely.
6 ounces non-fat or low-fat plain Greek yogurt
1 clementine or tangerine, peeled and pulled into segments
½ ounce bittersweet chocolate, chopped
6 roasted pistachios, shelled and coarsely chopped
a drizzle of honey
Instructions: Put everything in a bowl and eat it.