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Thyme for Coriander & Asparagus

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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.

Spices for AsparagusWhether steamed or sautéed, the simpler the better when it comes to my favorite way of cooking asparagus. Too much of any spice, I find takes away from its natural flavors and can be to overpowering.

For those who tend to have more of a kapha constitution or imbalance, steaming asparagus is a great option—no fat needed. For those who tend to have a vata constitution or imbalance, sautéing or steaming works just add a good fat to help balance the astringency and dryness. For pitta constitutions or imbalances fat or no fat—either method works.

Here are two versions of the same recipe…steamed or sautéed, your choice. Happy eating, happy digesting.

Thyme For Coriander & Asparagus

a simple, healthy recipe for Asparagus inspired by the alchemy of Ayurveda 

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, Ayurveda, Indian
Season Spring, Summer
Quality cooling, dry, light
PREP TIME 10 minutes
COOK TIME 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME 20 minutes
SERVINGS 4 servings

ingredients

  • 1 tbsp ghee, olive oil or garlic infused oil
  • 1 bunch asparagus medium width
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper freshly ground
  • 3-4 sprigs thyme fresh
  • 2 tsp coriander powder toasted
  • sea or rock to taste
  • 1/2 lemon juice + zest
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds toasted

instructions

  1. Rinse asparagus and cut-off or snap off the hard, dried and tough ends of each spear. Set aside.

Steamed Version

  1. in a small bowl muddle thyme (remove stems), lemon zest, salt, black pepper and toasted coriander power to release the essential oils. Then whisk in the olive oil and the lemon juice. If using a jar give it a good shake. Set aside (if using ghee it will need to be melted)

  2. fill a saute pan with about 2 inches of water and place on medium-high heat. When the water begins to simmer, add in the prepped asparagus and cover for about minute or 2. Lay the spears flat for even cooking. If the pan is not big enough, steam in batches. once the asparagus is slightly pliable, turn-off the stove and continue to cook covered—for another minute or so. After 3-4 minutes of total cook time, the spears will bend with more ease, and still have a crunch. This will prevent overcooking. The color will be bright green. Drain the excess water.

  3. then toss the asparagus with the dressing directly in the pan, sprinkle the sesame seeds on top and serve immediately. 

Saute Version

  1. one medium heat, warm a saute pan, then add the ghee or olive oil. When the fat is warm, add in the thyme sprigs, black pepper and coriander powder (if it's not pre-toasted) Saute for 20 seconds or so on medium heat to infuse the oil with thyme and slightly toast the spices. 

  2. Then, add the prepped asparagus——it is okay if they are a little wet, it will create some steam and aide the cooking process. Cook the asparagus for about 3 minutes—shaking the pan to rotate the spears, you can also use tongs. If coriander powder is pre-toasted, add it now, along with the salt. Toss for about a minute. Turn off the stove and finish with a big squeeze of lemon juice and zest. this will also de-glaze the pan. Then sprinkle the toasted sesame seeds.

  3. Serve in the pan if eating immediately or transfer to a serving dish to slow down the cooking process and prevent overcooking. 

recipe notes

  • The asparagus pictured here took a little less than 5 minutes to steam— from the time it went into the pan until the water was drained.
  • While the asparagus is hot or in a hot pan it will continue to cook, slightly undercook to prevent overcooking. 
  • Transfer the asparagus to a serving plate, if you are not eating them immediately—to slow down the cooking process.
  • If you feel the asparagus steamed for too long, rinse them under cold water to stop the cooking process. Then toss them with the dressing and sesame seeds
  • if you cannot find toasted coriander powder, warm up a small pan, add in the coriander powder and stir for about 20 seconds until the aroma is released. Toasted coriander powder has a rich flavor and the essentials oils and medicinal properties have been activated.
  • If using coriander seeds, toast them and then crush, its easier when they are warm.
  • garlic, if you do not have garlic oil and want a touch of garlic flavor, I recommend sauteing the garlic, prior to adding it to the dressing, if using the steamed method. If sauteing, add sliced or minced garlic about a minute after the asparagus to prevent burning. Medium heat is a good temp.  Cooking garlic helps balance the acidity and makes it a little less rajasic.  For 1lb of asparagus, I recommend 1 small clove to not overpower the natural flavor of the asparagus
  • I made about 5 lbs of steamed asparagus for a large party. To ensure the asparagus did not overcook or become soggy, I steamed them in batches for 4 minutes. Then placed the spears in cold water to stop the cooking process. Prior to serving at room temperature, I tossed them in the dressing. 

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article intend to highlight alternative studies and induce conversation. The information is not intended for use in the medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease, even if and to the extent that this article features the advice of physicians and medical practitioners. please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.

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