Kapha, Pitta, Recipes, Salads, Vata
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Spiced Cabbage Slaw aka Cabbage Sambharo

Spiced Cabbage Slaw

Cabbage Sambharo aka SlawI love the crunch, crunch of cabbage. Especially with daal (lentil soup) and chawval (rice).  The crunch factor really satisfies my love for various textures in my meals.  I find having creamy, crunchy, soft, chewy, etc. components are as important for preventing cravings as having all six tastes (sweet, salty, sour, pungent, astringent, and bitter). Perhaps because growing up we ate crunchy cabbage salads daily so the crunch, crunch also has a nostalgic connection. 

This week I need a little crunch in my life. I think its all the daal I have been eating without cabbage salad that has triggered this. So, I bought a small green cabbage to make a quick sambharo or “stir-fry” style cabbage slaw.  My digestion is a little sluggish right now, so I am opting for a slightly cooked and oily version will lots of carminative spices versus one cured in salt. I  think this will be the better option for me and prevent any imbalances.

Dosha: VPK (Vata, Pitta, Kapha friendly)

Time to Make: 10-15 mins

You Need: a medium to large frying pan


  • 1 small Cabbage (green) sliced up thinly (about 4 cups)
  • 2 T Olive, Sesame oil, or Ghee (reduce amount if solid)
  • 1 1/2 T of grated Ginger
  • 2 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds
  • 4-5 Curry leaves (optional)
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 3 T of chopped Cilantro
  • Juice of 1 large Lemon

On a medium to high heat range, warm your frying pan then add oil.  Once oil is heated,  add ginger, mustard, cumin and curry leaves (a quick tarka).  Give it a quick stir.  Mustard seeds should pop, cumin gets a bit toasty and it should smell like heaven in about 20 secs.  After about 30 secs, add cabbage (in small sections at a time), and salt.  Stir until cabbage begins to wilt. You can add a tablespoon or 2 of water if needed to prevent sticking. Once cabbage has wilted (about 1-2 mins) turn off the stove. Add lemon and cilantro. Mix well and serve warm or room temperature. Happy eating!

Enjoy as: a salad, a side dish, wrapped in a chapati, wrapped in greens, in a sandwich, etc…

Tastes: Salty, Sour, Pungent, Astringent, Bitter

Cabbage is:

  • astringent in taste
  • cooling in energy
  • pungent in its post-digestive effect
  • its qualities are dry and rough
  • pitta and kapha pacifying (increases vata if eaten raw and without oil)
  • like all vegetables extremely nutritious, eat more veggies

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