Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Apple Cleanse

Since Clubs Are Trump is about eating sandwiches covered in bacon, I thought it might not be a bad idea to interrupt the Club Sandwich Tour of Pittsburgh for a one-day cleanse.

Healing with Whole Foods by Paul Pitchford describes this treatment as the Gall Bladder Flush, and recommends that it "be done with the guidance of an experienced health practitioner." But mine wasn't.

Pitchford's flush entails eating nothing but apples all day long. As many apples as you want, with water or herbal tea to drink. The final touch is a mixture of olive oil and lemon juice, drunk just before bed.

I've been aware lately of an increased feeling of biliousness, figuratively speaking. So, when I saw that simply eating lots of apples (and nothing else) might help, I thought it might be worth a try. Besides, it's apple season.

I got my apples at the farmers market. Pink Lady, Winesap, and Granny Smith, from Paul's Orchard, Joffre PA. All of them were crisp, juicy, sweet-tart and delectable.
I had two big Pink Ladies for breakfast, and I wasn't hungry again until lunchtime, at 1:00. (I'm frequently hungry way before lunchtime. That didn't happen after a breakfast of apples.) At lunch I had apple slices, about 2.5 apples' worth. By late afternoon, I wasn't exactly hungry, but I was tired. And kind of spacey. And when I saw others eating bread and butter, or fried rice, or corn chips, I did feel a certain longing.

Dinner was a large dish of sliced apples--four or five apples, several varieties. By evening I was tired, and I didn't feel especially focused, but that's not all that unusual after a hard day of work, so who's to say the nothing-but-apples diet was to blame?

The lemon juice and olive oil mixture was a pretty chartreuse color, and not too yucky. It tasted like salad dressing. Two or three spoonsful were nice. By the fourth or fifth spoonful I was getting tired of it. After eight or nine spoonsful, I said the hell with it and didn't drink the rest.

But I drizzled some of it on my toast the next morning. It was good, and I was happy to be back on regular food again. Also coffee. I had missed coffee.

I ate my toast, drank my coffee, went for a walk, and concluded that the apple cleanse didn't really make a difference. Eating nothing but apples was just that, nothing more nothing less. I got to enjoy an abundance of farm-fresh local apples, but well, it didn't exactly revoluntionize my life.

Until later that afternoon. Twenty-four hours past my three-apple-lunch, I felt cleansed. I felt light. I felt like I'd been living my life filthy and bloated for so long that I'd come to think of filthy and bloated as a normal state, and now that I knew the difference, I would never let myself get so sludgy and sluggish ever again.
That is not to say I am giving up club sandwiches. Perish the thought. The Club Tour must, and will, go on. But we'll stop for apples every so often.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Bloomfield Sandwich Shop

Warm, welcoming, generous.

That is the Bloomfield Sandwich Shop, and that is the delicious sandwich I had there.

There is no club per se on the Bloomfield Sandwich Shop's menu, but there is a grilled chicken sandwich. And when you order the grilled-chicken sandwich, you can ask for it on toast, with bacon. And they'll offer you lettuce, tomato, mayonnaise. So, even though they may eschew pretentious labels, they do make a sandwich very much like a club.

Very much like the ideal club. The grilled chicken was a juicy, flavorful delight. And it was a nice big piece. No stinting on the chicken. Or on the bacon. There was so much bacon, I almost felt guilty. I expect the bacon to be more like a topping, but in this sandwich, it was a filling. There was almost as much bacon as there was chicken. And there was almost as much tomato and lettuce as there was bacon--a lovely, wavy wedge of lettuce and a thick slice of tomato were right there beneath the top slice of crispy white toast.

Everything about this sandwich said, enjoy.

And I really, really did.