Plant Based Recipes

Epazote Mexican Herb to Relieve Gas

Posted by on Aug 29, 2017

Epazote Mexican Herb to Relieve Gas is popular as a fresh herb in southern Mexican cuisine. It is most famously used in black beans, and is said to have a “carminative” effect. Carminative herbs and spices are medicines that, in the terms of European herbology prevent the development of gas in the gut. Carminative herbs and spices also help people that find it difficult to expel gas, and instead suffer painful bloating in either the stomach or intestines. As such Epazote can be a kitchen herb useful for people with IBS, and in general is an excellent culinary herb...

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Smoothies for Pitta Dosha

Posted by on May 23, 2017

Smoothies for Pitta Dosha: People who are Pitta dosha dominant can certainly have more cooling food, as well as raw food that is cooling such as cucumber lettuce and leafy cruciferous veggies sweet fruits coconut flesh, water, and milk milk, butter, ghee And Pitta dosha is, like Vata, pacified by the sweet taste. So in summer or warm weather, such as late Spring, early Fall, or closer to the equator, Pitta can be much more liberal about smoothies, , even vegetable ones, especially emphasizing a healthy combination of spices, and protein. Ayurveda does not recommend eating fruit with food,...

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Ayurvedic Kitchari

Posted by on Apr 7, 2017

What is Kitchari? Kitchari is a Sattvic, light, easy-to-digest, cleansing, detoxifying food that is excellent once a week, at the change of seasons, or any time you feel like giving your digestive system a break. It is also just a normal one-pot-dish you can have for dinner. What is Sattva and What Are Sattvic Foods? Sattvic foods, or more exactly, a Sattvic diet, is a diet that is light and easy to digest and that aids a “spiritual” lifestyle whose goal is “purity, wholesomeness, and virtue.”  Sattivc foods are fresh and full of prana, nutrient dense,  keep Agni stimulated,...

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Roasted Chickpea Nut Breakfast Cookies

Posted by on Jan 16, 2017

A favorite snack in South Asia from Afghanistan to Burma is dry roasted Chickpea, known in India by many names from gram, to black gram, to bengal gram, to channa, to dhaliya, to pottu kadalai and many more. This is the same bean known as Hummus in Arabic (whether whole or mashed into paste with tahina), Garbanzo in Spanish, and Ceci in Italian. When I lived in Tamil Nadu, especially in Chennai, it was fun to hear the roasted chickpea vendors banging their giant pans with the edge of their metal spoons to create an attention grabbing bell-like sound...

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Pomegranate Coconut Water Pitta Pacifying Summer Drink

Posted by on Jul 13, 2016

Pomegranate Coconut Water Pitta Pacifying Summer Drink is a low sugar herbal fruit beverage that is strongly Pitta pacifying and cooling to the body perfect for replacing electrolytes in Summer hot weather and hard exercise.  Cooling Foods in Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda Coconut water is a very traditional hot weather drink in South Asia.  Coconut water has two things going for it in summer. One, it is very cooling to the system. Its hard to describe in scientific terms what that means, but in common sense terms just think of the phrase “cool as a cucumber.” If you cut...

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Ayurvedic Hibiscus Summer Tea

Posted by on Jul 5, 2016

Ayurvedic Hibiscus Summer Tea drink is meant to be drunk cool or room temperature. Hibiscus, the leading ingredient in Ayurvedic Hibiscus Summer Tea, also known as Sorrel in Caribbean English (unrelated to the leafy green known as Sorrel, or Rumex Acetosa), and Jamaica (Ha-mai-ka) in Mexican and Honduran Spanish, is a deep red flower that makes a naturally cooling beautifully red colored tea, notable for its refreshingly sour, slightly astringent flavor. It is brewed and drunk at room temperature any time of year at meal time, as a cooling refreshment between meals especially in the hot weather, and is...

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Indian Style Tri-doshic Okra Masala

Posted by on Jan 26, 2016

Indian Style Tri-doshic Okra Masala Here is one of my favorite Okra recipes: Indian Style Tri-doshic Okra Masala. There are many ways to make Okra. Iraqi’s cook it with onion and tomato. My friend Mrs. Mehdi with onion, cumin, and black pepper. My Persian friend adds pomegranite molasses and ground lamb with allspice and cumin. While my recipe, below, is designed especially to pacify Vatta and Pitta, in fact cooked Okra pacifies all three doshas, so with some slight modification that I describe after the recipe, you could adapt this dish even if you had a strong Kapha elevation....

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Using Spices in Ayurveda and Chinese Medicine to Protect Your Digestive Fire in Summer

Posted by on Jul 9, 2013

In summer we sweat and our yang energy or heat keeps getting dispersed and exhausted. On freezing cold days you feel cold, but on boiling hot days you sweat and become exhausted. In winter in every culture people eat heavy high-calorie foods, but in summer switch to lighter food. That is in part because our digestive fire weakens in summer because the yang is at the surface.Conversely, in summer, because it is so hot, we eat lots of cooling juicy food like fruit and more raw food. Raw food is cooling, because your body has to provide the fire...

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Healthy Summer Fruit Tart

Posted by on May 16, 2013

A Healthy Summer Fruit Tart is a nutrient dense food full of fiber, vitamins, minerals, flavanoids, antioxidants, and protein, with high amounts of life force from fresh ripe, organic ingredients, and without what’s bad for you–white sugar, artificial stuff, preservatives, things with no life force, like frozen fruit and pie crusts off the shelf of Cost Co. Traveling in Europe one of the things you might notice is that the pastries are sweet, but not sickeningly so. In particular the fruit tarts  are slightly sweet, but not so much that the flavor of the fruit comes second. Something I...

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Springtime Tea from Somalia with Cardamom and Mint

Posted by on May 3, 2013

Food and drink like language and music spreads between cultures without rules. But within any given tradition, within any given culture, its as if there are unspoken rules that govern change; creativity is allowed, but to a point. In the world of food or music, for example, once you change a thing enough it is no longer what it started out to be. This can lead to certain kinds of conformity.  For example, in my grandmother’s Russian Jewish culture there were two kinds of gefilte fish–sweet without garlic, but with sugar, and spicy, without sugar, but with black pepper...

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Daikon Radish: Detoxify and Promote Digestion

Posted by on Feb 23, 2013

Daikon Radish is a great soup or salad vegetable. It is spicy, and acts as a digestive by stimulating digestive fire, just as the small radishes that Mexicanos eat with corn and meat do, but it is more aromatic, especially when boiled, than the small radishes and not as hot. Daikon is used in Chinese Medicine Nutritional therapy to balance heavier foods that are high in harder to digest animal protein and fat, like beef or pork. Beef and pork, which are are also neutral and cool in natural temperature, easily produce toxic dampness when eaten in excess, because...

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Wakame Sea Vegetable with Turnip, Pear, and American Ginseng

Posted by on Dec 5, 2012

    Wakame is a delicate, mild tasting, low calorie sea vegetable with a succulent texture. A favorite food in Japanese and Korean cuisine, it is traditionally cooked in miso soup, served on its own as a cold side dish (sunomono), or cooked with foods like kabocha squash. It can be adapted into American cooking in salads, soups, stews, as a side dish, and even added into raw sauerkraut. It compliments grains from barley and quinoa to rice and millet. Wakame looks black in the package, but turns a delicate green color when cooked, brighter if blanched briefly in...

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Winter Wisdom: Chinese Medicine

Posted by on Nov 1, 2012

Winter Wisdom of Chinese Medicine The Nei Jing/Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine, which presents the cutting edge medical wisdom of its time, is full of brilliant advice for both prevention and cure.  Chapter 2 describe how to adjust our lifestyles to match the natural rhythm of the  seasons.   Winter is the season for “storage” in Chinese Medicine.  It is the storage of winter that allows for the “bursting forth” of Spring. As in nature so in humankind. Storage of what?  Storage of Qi, Blood, Yin, and Yang.  How? To store means to hold on to what you...

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Juiced Watermelon with Lime, Ginger, and Salt

Posted by on Aug 29, 2012

Alternative to Iced Drinks in Hot Weather Protect the Agni/ Yang in Summer: Juiced Watermelon with Lime, Ginger, and Salt The other day was quite hot (for SD!), and I swam at the beach after walking down from the top of Torrey Pines, and got home overheated and thirsty. I could still feel the sun hot on my head, even though I had worn a hat. I needed a lot of fluid and to cool down healthfully. An excellent alternative to iced beverages in hot conditions like that is juiced melon, especially watermelon. I juiced mine with fresh ginger...

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Summer Raw Beet, Sardine, and Pasta Salad

Posted by on Jul 8, 2012

Summer is a time when even cold dry (Vata) types or cold damp (Kapha) types can have little more raw foods. One of the ways to make raw foods more compatible for cold types with weaker digestive energy (Agni/Spleen Qi) is to have it in small amounts with other foods that stimulate digestion.   Necessity is the mother of invention. Today I was hungry, lazy, and the cupboard was bare. I had some leftover pasta, a tin of sardines, a can of chickpeas, a bunch of scallions and one lone beetroot in my frig. So I made a pasta...

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