Gentle Winter Detox: Mung Beans & Greens

You raised the roof in January!

Three days ago my friend Sally texted me those words. Reading it, I had one of those spluttering moments: tearing up with emotion, choking on relief, and giggling with delight all at once. I felt myself fold in half with a long exhale, while at the same time stand up, throw my arms out and expand in elation.

It took a moment, a long walk actually, to put some coherent thought to that visceral response. That’s when I realized, Sally’s right. In January, I made a little more room for myself. The month was challenging, at times overwhelming. It left me sore in places I hadn’t felt in a long time, and it raised the roof, expanding my sense of place in the world.

My guess is you probably raised the roof in January too, didn’t you? Made a little more room for your life, your heart, your voice, your values? Felt yourself standing a bit taller because of it?

We all need to stop regularly and acknowledge what we’ve faced, accomplished, survived.  We need a moment to celebrate the power, patience, commitment and creativity we bring to our every day lives. Often we need a friend to remind us, to say in her own way, “I see you,” and to celebrate with us.

Sally is that for me, and I want to share that blessing with you.

congratulations on raising the roof in January!

Because of you, there’s a lot more room for all of us to raise our voices, raise our values, and raise our hearts to love – to love even more wildly this mad, crazy, beautiful world of ours.

“Thank you for your dedication and beautiful service to the world,” as Sally wrote. You are magnificent. Your magnificence makes a difference. I am grateful for you.

Given that January was that roof-raising, February is about catching up with the new year promise of warm soups, eating well, and savoring every slow moment of winter’s wonder.

To that end, I offer you a sampling of my own daily meals. With the right intent and a little prep, they become a Winter Cleanse to reap the nourishing, nurturing, purifying, re-balancing joys of this season’s sumptuous, edible love.


Breakfast: Mung Beans & Greens
Recipe below.
{ I used whole mung beans for this because Banyan Botanicals sent me a sample, (as an Ambassador) and they are good. But I’ve also appreciated the Organic Sprouted Mung beans from Truroots. }

Lunch: Kichari
Numerous recipes here on my blog: As in this everyday Kichari, Dr. Jay’s Kichari midway down this page, and this wintry one here.
{ Kichari is typically made with split mung beans, also called mung dal, which don’t need pre-soaking and cooks up quickly. But you can make it with whole mung – just remember to soak beans overnight. }

Dinner: Vegetables – steamy, soupy, sumptuous
Steam your veggies, make a soup or puree, or pop a root vegetable in the oven and roast your way to creamy, carmelly delight.

Snacks: Fruit
Only if hungry.

Beverages: Hot water
Sip throughout the day. You can add lemon slices to your water, or boil it with fresh ginger for flavor and extra inner sparkle.

Repeat one day, two days, three days – as long as you have an appetite for it. Your digestive system will tell you when it’s had enough… which might sound something like, “bleh!”

Detox Mung Beans & Greens
Makes 2-4 servings (2 if it is your meal, 4 if it is one part of a meal)

1 knob of ghee (or earth balance or coconut oil)
2 inch piece of leek, chopped and rinsed
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
1/2 inch ginger, peeled and chopped
1 pinch mustard seeds
2 shakes curry powder
1 c whole mung, soaked a minimum of 6-8 hours
4 cups water, low sodium veg broth, or a combination of the two
4-5 stalks rainbow chard, rinsed and chopped
1 bunch dandelion greens, rinsed and chopped
pink or sea salt
black pepper


Melt the ghee (oil) in a medium sized saucepan over medium high heat. Sauté the leeks. Once softened, add the garlic, ginger and mustard seeds.  When the mustard seeds begin to pop, shake in the curry powder, and give your pot a whirl.

Rinse and strain the mung beans. Stir in the pan. Add broth/water and cover. Once it comes to a boil, reduce heat to low. Allow to simmer 20 minutes. Add greens.

Simmer on low heat for 5-10 minutes. Taste and season with salt and black pepper. Turn off heat and let sit for 5 minutes.

Serve with a spoonful of kimchi, or your favorite ferments, to fire up flavor and digestion. Garnish with pumpkin seeds for a salty crunch and the fiber/minerals that power up your cleanse.

The homemade kimchi added to my beans and greens were provided by none other than…. who else? Sally Tinker Smith!


Another great friend, Stephanie Weaver, has just published the most incredible book. It is detailed, comprehensive, beautiful and brilliant. She gives you a step-by-step plan to beat migraines that not only includes meal plans and 75 gorgeous recipes, but also offers meditations, and dozens of stress-reducing tools.

The recipes are healthy, low glycemic, low sodium, so while it is a great book for anyone who suffers from migraines, it is really a great book for anyone. So who’s in? Leave a comment and in a few days I’ll put your name in my magic hat with every commenters name. One name will be pulled randomly, and to that blessed being will be sent Stephanie’s  Migraine Relief Plan.

Love you! 


21 thoughts on “Gentle Winter Detox: Mung Beans & Greens

  1. Happy to be alerted to your blog via Stephanie Weaver. If I win the book, I will have it sent to my sister who is having migraine issues. Look forward to learning through your thoughts and shares.

  2. Sounds beautiful! Your blogs are a delight. I would love to see Stephanie’s book. I have a neighbor who I would love to cook for. There are foods she must not eat or headaches are triggered. I am at a loss about what to prepare and this would be a wonderful aid. Thanks for all you share with all of us.

  3. Your post hit home with me as my January was probably like most people’s December with some deadlines and now February feels like the New Year finally, where I can breath. I follow Stephanie’s work and am blessed my visual migraines are very infrequent–maybe one or two a year at this point and not too much pain. I still follow a low glycemic, low sodium diet and watch foods I think may trigger symptoms, so I’d love a chance at winning her book.

    • A sister in the February restart! I am glad your migraines are infrequent now, and so blessed we both have Stephanie’s immense gifts in our lives. Thanks Deb.

  4. The book sounds fantastic. I had not heard of it before reading this post. Keeping my fingers crossed…Thank you for the chance!

  5. You are the most amazing friend! I can definitely see myself doing this mini-cleanse, with all of these ingredients in the kitchen already. Jeff has a double batch of kimchi fermenting in the crock right now, so I can always add a spot of sauerkraut for brightness and intestinal health. Thank you for seeing me, and for your always inspiring blog posts. Sending you so much love…

    • Blog post as ode to Sally Tinker Smith! Can’t wait to share Jeff’s famous kimchi recipe. Meanwhile, I’m enjoying my little jar, as I am enjoying all the inspiration you send my way. Thank you Sally!

    • I am sorry to hear that, Dee. You’ve probably tried everything, which can be exhausting. He is lucky to have your love, and I am lucky to have you in my food love circle. Thanks.

  6. Oh Laura, thanks for this great post and rcipes too.
    I’ve had a great January (it’s one of my favourite month); in January I can see the life starts again together with the new year.
    Hope my February will be wonderful as well.
    That book looks great and the stress-reducing tools should be very interesting.

    • So glad to hear your new year is starting great. I hoe your February is also great, and I wish you and Bea all happiness. Thanks Manu!

  7. This a beautiful, rich, nourishing post all around. Thank you so much. Really glad to hear about the headache book…looking forward to diving into that. Peace from Italy.

  8. Wow, an AMAZING TOPIC, that has too long been ignored. I look so forward to diving into this venture of healing through our food. Thank you for this journey to wellness.

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