All posts filed under: Vegetables

Artichokes with Crispy Garlic, Ghee & Sumac

After coming home with a bag of freshly harvested baby artichokes from Palo Alto Farmer’s Market last Sunday, I was reminded that some fresh produce still remains seasonal. With year-round access to our favorite fruits and vegetables, sometimes remembering whats in and out of season can be a little challenging. Strolling through the Farmer’s market was a lovely way to reconnect with nature’s seasonal gifts, the farmers, and sunshine. While remembering that produce like fava beans, cherries, peaches, fresh peas and artichokes don’t come by daily. Seasonal produce still exist!

Green Bean & Coconut Stir-Fry

Quick and easy with a flavorful aromatic punch pretty much sums up this string bean coconut stir-fry recipe from Chitra Agrawal’s new cookbook (read more here).  Any dish with shredded coconut always makes my eyes shine.  The chewy goodness sweetly balances the spicy flavor profile of this Karnatakan dish.  Adding a layer of complexity to a fairly simple dish.  The use of coconut is one of the things I appreciate most about cuisine from the Southern part of India. When I came across this recipe in Vibrant India, I knew it was one of the first ones I wanted to try.

Thyme for Coriander & Asparagus

I’ve been eating asparagus every week for the past 6 weeks and I am still loving it! With minimal prep and cook time, whether sauteed or steamed, these slightly sweet and astringent tasting spears are topping my spring list for the easiest green veggies. They’re so tasty too! Rich in the earth and air elements, foods with an astringent taste, like, asparagus, can bind and draw out excess from the body.  Whether it is ama (toxins derived from undigested food), fat or water, the astringent taste supports detoxification. Have you experienced urinating a bit more or longer after eating asparagus? In helping the body release excess water, combined with asparagus’ cooling energy, these delicious spears support reducing inflammation and puffiness, while helping to purify the blood. For individuals who tend to retain water or have accumulated excessive heat from the winter season, asparagus is spring’s natural detoxifier. It’s light and dry qualities harmonize with spring and prep the body for the summer. Mother Nature’s—she’s on it and one step ahead. Whether steamed or sautéed, the simpler the …

chit-chaat-chai ayurvedic roasted squash and yam with tahini dressing

Roasted Squash & Yams with Sweet Spices & a Tahini Lime Dressing

A common perception about ‘Ayurvedic’ food is that it is Indian food and vice versa. Hundreds of years ago, this may have been true, but over time, trade, economics, immigration, migration, personal tastes, priorities, availability, population, media, etc…have influenced India’s cuisine. Creating a distinction between Indian food and ‘Ayurvedic’ food. Although the spices may be similar, Indian dishes tend to a bit spicier, oilier, heavier, hotter or at times more processed than a dish deemed ‘Ayurvedic’. As the proverb goes,  “what you eat becomes your mind, as is the food, so is your mind”. ‘Ayurvedic’ food is based on a holistic approach to ingredients, preparation, and serving. Each aspect accounts for the mind-body connection, to ensure a meal is not only nutritious but that it has soul! Ingredients are fresh versus highly processed to attain the highest nutritional value. They align with the season to support digestion, absorption, and elimination. Meals are prepared with an intention along with calm, steady and happy mindset to infuse the meal and ultimately the mind-body-soul with the same energy. When food is served, it’s to appease the eyes and the …

5 Spices w/Yams & Rainbow Chard #chitchaatchai

5 Spiced Yams & Rainbow Chard

I love leveraging a good, basic recipe and adjusting a few ingredients to change up the flavor. It makes cooking easier, leaves room for a little creativity and keeps meals fresh—who doesn’t want that?! Today’s recipe, is based on a recipe I posted a while back that was intentionally developed to be flexible—5 Spices & a Veggie, a Quick ‘Ayurvedic’ Stir-Fry.  Using the same simple concept to create today’s recipe. I chose veggies and spices based on the tastes and qualities that are complementary to the summer aka pitta season. The main ingredients—yams (sweet), red onions (sweet when caramelized) and rainbow chard (astringent and bitter) make up the 3 key tastes of summer according to Ayurveda’s wisdom.  A sprinkle of five spices (technically six with the lemon-oops!) provide the remaining three tastes—pungent, sour and salty. Ayurveda speaks to the importance of incorporating all six tastes in every dish and/or meal to ensure the body, mind, emotions, and spirit get the essential nutrients and nourishment. This helps with retaining balance and reduces cravings.

5 Spices & a Veggie, an 'Ayurvedic' Stir-Fry

5 Spices & a Veggie: a Quick ‘Ayurvedic’ Stir-Fry

One of the best things for strengthening the digestive track is to—spice it up! Spices (and this includes herbs) are like digestive aides. They support the digestion of food from the time it enters the body to the time it exits. Rich in vitamins and minerals, spices prevent toxins from accumulating in the gut.  In-turn, allowing for better absorption and fostering good health. Eating healthy is not just about organic, fresh and local vegetables, good fats, and whole grains.  It also considers if the food can be easily digested.  Spices can be intimidating, at first.  The variety of spices alone can make it challenging to figure out which ones to buy.  I recommend starting with a 4-5 dry spices. A few different spices is all you need to get the party started.  Then, it’s having fun experimenting with different combinations, adjusting the quantity, or  when to incorporate them into the pot. Even with just a few of the same spices, making these types of adjustments can change a dishes flavor. My recipe below will help you get started on your spice journey. It is a tri-doshic recipe, meaning …

sarsoon ka saag

Sarson Ka Saag (Mustard Greens), a Delicious Punjabi Winter Dish.

For the first time this winter I made Sarson Ka Saag. I love this Punjabi dish!  I had it for the  first time a few years ago when I lived in Toronto. My Punjabi roommate at the time made it one COLD Toronto evening and since then its been on my “must make” list. I didn’t grow up eating sarsoon (mustard greens), perhaps due to the region my family comes from (now known as) Gujarat, where it doesn’t get quite gets as cold as Punjab (a region split between India & Pakistan). Due to its heating properties, sarsoon ka saag is associated with cold, wet winter months. Its main ingredient mustard greens are tender, bitter, heating making it perfect green to enjoy during Kapha season.