So far this year has really run me through the ringer. Come on, 2014, when are you gonna let up? The trailer reno, while actually very exciting, was oftentimes educational in a not-fun way. Money spent on electricians just to get incorrect direction and advice. Parking tickets for leaving the trailer in the same spot for too long. Many, MANY nights of very little sleep. Then just as we get settled in, I have the pleasure of undergoing surgery for endometriosis (more on that to come). And to put it lightly, “minimally invasive” abdominal surgery immediately following a major life upheaval was about as fun as being punched in the face.
Both mental and physical healing are a top priority right now. Surgery is accompanied by being at the mercy of doctors who, while having your best interests at heart, will pump as many drugs into you as possible while you’re sedated. Things I’d have elected to not have, if given a choice in the matter. Bed rest and feeling very toxic were my life for about a week, and once I could more easily move around again, I’ve been on a mission to right all that is going wrong in this precious body of mine.
My best friend, our Hurom slow-juicer, won its spot front in center on our limited counter space. I resumed our CSA subscription and have been juicing like a mad-person. It helps me feel clean and refreshed to drink fresh pressed juice in the mornings. It’s helped me be more regular (apparently surgery can bring that department to a stand-still, sorry if that’s TMI) and therefore sped up the healing process tremendously. In addition to getting all the veggies and fruits from juice combos like this and this, I add chia to my juices for fiber and omega-3’s.
The Aztec people have been using chia for generations in a drink called a ‘fresca.‘ It’s typically just water, lemon, sweetener, and chia seeds. If you’ve read Born to Run, you’ll be familiar with this as the drink the Tarahumara people rely on as a staple in their diets and an integral part of their health and longevity. The following recipe is my take on this century-old drink, utilizing oranges and carrots, which are both in season right now, making for a flavorful and nutrient-rich drink. Soaking the chia in whatever juice you use allows a gelatinous coating to form on the outside, making it easy it swallow and enjoy. I’m sure you’ve seen chia juices in the markets so here’s a little inspiration on saving some money and making your own.
Orange Carrot Chia Fresca
Yields: about 2 cups juice
8 medium carrots
4 medium oranges
1 small lemon
1 2″ knob ginger
2 T. chia seeds
Optional: grass-fed protein source like these collagen peptides
Peel oranges and lemon and roughly chop. Wash carrots with a good fruit wash (especially if you’re not using organic) and dice in 1″ pieces. Peel the ginger. Feed all pieces through your juicer. Mix chia seeds into the juice and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Mix well again (I’ve found that a blender bottle works really well for this), optional collagen, and enjoy!
Note: if you don’t have a juicer, you can find both orange and carrot juice at your local market. Just mix equal parts of the 2 juices, squeeze in a lemon, and add a bit of grated ginger. This isn’t preferable (nutrient-wise) to juicing fresh but is much better to drink that processed juice drinks.
Other fun combinations:
Mix it up! Pomegranate & lime, apple & celery, or cucumber & lemon are all just as refreshing.