The Single Girl Dinner Detox Menu

I recently took a week to myself in L.A. to press the reset button on my diet. When I'm alone, I find that: (a) I don't feel as hungry, (b) I usually crave simple foods, and (c) my portion sizes are a lot smaller. 

It was time to get clean.

For inspiration, here's my detox menu:

 

STARTER: DAIKON & LEEK SOUP 

Daikon radish has many health benefits, including enzymes that aid in digesting fats and starches. This soup is soothing and light. I'd recommend adding an immersion blender to your arsenal of kitchen tools. It's absolutely indispensable! 


To make: Chop 1 leek and 1 large daikon radish. Heat a saucepan and add a slick of olive oil. Sauté the chopped leek and daikon radish until softened. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and cook until vegetables are tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove the saucepan from heat and use the immersion blender directly in the pot to blend the soup until smooth. Ladle into serving bowl. Sprinkle with freshly snipped chives. (I added black truffle zest for a touch of luxury!)

 

MAIN: SEARED SALMON IN COCONUT OIL 

As you probably already know, salmon is an excellent source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which lowers inflammation and helps the cells in your arteries function. Searing it in coconut oil adds a lovely coconutty flavor. In addition to converting "bad" LDL cholesterol into "good" HDL cholesterol, coconut oil is a powerful weapon at killing harmful stomach bacteria. 


To make: Season your salmon filet with salt and pepper. Melt a tablespoon of coconut oil in a hot skillet over high heat. Place the salmon in the skillet and, depending on its size, sear for 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Transfer the salmon to a plate and let it rest for a minute or two before serving. 

 

DESSERT: PAPAYA WITH BERRIES + SENCHA GREEN TEA

I love ending a meal with a small serving of fresh fruit and berries. Papaya contains enzymes that helps break down protein and reduces the amount of free radicals in your body that contribute to the development of cancer; blackberries and blueberries are excellent sources of antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory properties. Add a mug of hot sencha green tea on the side as a metabolism booster. 

Lady M Cake Boutique

 

LADY M CAKE BOUTIQUE

41 East 78th Street bet. Park and Madison Avenues
212.452.2222

The Plaza Food Hall
1 West 59th Street
646.755.3225


My first encounter with Lady M occurred at Takashimaya, the elegant Japanese department store on Fifth Avenue whose doors sadly closed in 2010. There were many afternoons where I would tuck into the hidden tea salon downstairs and treat myself to a cup of frothy matcha green tea and a slice of Lady M's signature mille-feuille cake, which was then a secret enjoyed only by true insiders. At the time, the confections were baked by one baker in Japan and flown to New York. The price tag for a whole mille-feuille cake back then was a hefty $90. Today, it's $75. (Still hefty, I know.)

Thankfully, just because Takashimaya vanished did not mean that we had to bid adieu to Lady M's gorgeous creations, as its own retail space soon appeared on the Upper East Side—a white lacquered box filled with baked jewels. The mille-feuille (which means "thousand layers"), of course, is a must: twenty delicate layers of crepes filled with an airy almond custard cream and finished with a caramelized burnt sugar top. It will quite possibly be the lightest "decadent dessert" you will ever try.

I also adore their pristine cheesecake, which is topped with a glossy white blanket of sour cream and named gåteau nuage, or "cloud cake", for a reason. However, if it's grandeur you're after, go for the banana mille-feuille, which is an architectural stunner of flaky puff pastry, whipped cream, layers of vanilla sponge cake, ripe bananas, and a kiss of triple sec.

*Lady M Confections is also found at The Plaza Food Hall and a selection of goodies is available for shipping online.