I always fall in love with one of the recipes in my (Peri-) Menopause Detox.  And I found the one this detox.  It’s Quinoa with Mushroom, Arugula and Lemon.  The base recipe comes from the Ottolenghi Cookbook (my favorite of all time!).  I adapted it to be more of an everyday dish.  I’ve enjoyed it immensely the last few days.  Yum!  I think you will too.   The recipe is below. 

Mushrooms are a great vegetable for a winter detox because they available all year round and because they provide detox and hormone balancing properties.  Wild mushroom season varies by type but mushrooms like cremini and shiitake are cultivated and available all year.

Mushrooms are great for detoxing because they are high in B vitamins.  They are a good source of minerals like zinc and selenium that are important for hormone balance. Shiitake mushrooms are also unique in their amino acid make up. They are one of the few plants that are complete proteins – meaning they have all essential amino acids. Mushrooms like shiitake, and to lesser degree cremini, are are also known for their cancer fighting properties. For us women with the risk of breast and cervical cancers, this is great.

Mushrooms act to block estrogens and prevent androgens from converting to estrogens in your body.  During peri-menopause, we are actually more at risk of being estrogen dominant than not.  That means is we have excess estrogen and lack the progesterone to offset it.  Some estrogens are cancer promoting and estrogens promote cell growth. 

Eating foods that block estrogen, avoiding foods that promote estrogen and doing a detox at least once a year helps your body get in balance. That will go a long way in reducing or eliminating your peri- menopause symptoms.

For more tips and recipes like this and to do your annual detox, join me for the Peri-Menopause Detox.  We start Feb 11-15.  Register here.

Here’s the recipe.  You’ll love it.

Quinoa with Mushroom, Arugula and Lemon
Serves 4-6
3 cups cooked quinoa
2-3 tbsp. olive oil
12-16 oz. of shiitake or cremini mushroom (mix is best!)
1 tbsp. dried thyme
3 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 bunch flat-leaf parsley
2 cinnamon sticks
1 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
6-8 oz. cooked, shredded chicken (optional)
1/2 whole lemon, sliced and finely chopped (peel and flesh),
2 cups baby arugula
1/4 cup pumpkins seeds, toasted

Dressing
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 garlic clove
Salt and pepper, to taste

  1. Clean mushrooms with dry pastry brush.
  2. Heat a large pan on medium heat.  Add olive oil.  Add thyme, garlic, parsley, cinnamon sticks, salt and pepper. Stir to distribute evenly.
  3. Add shiitake and/or cremini mushrooms.  Turn heat to medium-high and cook for 5 minutes – do not stir (but watch that parsley doesn’t burn).
  4. Add chicken if using, mix and cook for another 3 minutes. 
  5. Turn off heat and set aside.
  6. In a small bowl, mix 1/4 cup olive oil and lemon juice.  Add 1 tsp. of sea salt and ¼ tsp. fresh black pepper.
  7. Place quinoa into large bowl and fluff with a fork. Add cooked mushrooms, chopped lemon, arugula and pumpkin seeds.  Drizzle with 2-4 tbsp. of dressing and toss.
  8. Taste and adjust dressing and seasoning. 
  9. Serve chilled or at room temperature

Don’t forget to save Tuesday, Feb 5 for the PreDetox Pantry Prep.  12:30pm PST.  It will be on Facebook – click here to Like my page so you are ready to go.