September 23, 2017

Turmeric and Ginger Harvest

I am honored to participate in the harvest and cooking of fresh, organic turmeric and ginger grown in a Vermont greenhouse.

May the fruits of the harvest inspire us to find balance during this fall equinox time. Equal day and equal night call for a pause, a moment to revel in what surrounds us, appreciate it for what it is, and reflect on what's working in our lives and what we could let go.

Let these traditional Indian recipes inspire you to support your digestive health and immunity with turmeric and ginger. I have learned how to prepare these dishes from Dr. Vasant Lad, director of the Ayurvedic Institutes in India and New Mexico.

Ginger: warming, anti-inflammatory, soothes stomach cramps, reduces flatulence, alleviates common cold and flu symptoms. Clinical studies show that ginger consumption decreases arthritis pain and protects the liver from damage.

Turmeric: anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory, turmeric contains anti-inflammatory curcumin, which helps to heal GI diseases such irritable bowel syndrome. It prevents cancer cells from growing new blood vessels to feed themselves and induces the death of existing cancer cells. It also breaks up accumulated amyloid plaque in the brain that’s related to the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.


Rajma means red kidney beans in Hindi. This is an adaptation of a traditional Punjabi recipe.
These rich and hearty legumes are high in iron and protein. They support gut health with their fiber content.

To pressure cook* the beans:
¾ cups rajma (red kidney beans)
1 ½ cups waters

*If you do not have a pressure cooker, just soak the beans overnight and boil in water until tender, about 45 minutes.

For rajma recipe:
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 bay leaf
1 small onion, chopped
2 teaspoons fresh grated ginger
2 teaspoons fresh grated turmeric
2 cloves fresh chopped garlic
1 ½ teaspoons red chili powder or 2 fresh chopped chilies
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 cup chopped tomatoes
½ teaspoon garam masala
Salt to taste

Wash dried rajma under running cold water till water runs clear.
Soak them in enough water for at least 8 hours or overnight.
If using canned beans, there is no need to soak or pressure cook them. Just rinse under the water and use beans in the recipe

Pressure cooking beans: discard the soaking water and add rajma to the pressure cooker with 3 ½ cups of fresh water. Close the lid and put the top on. Cook on high for 10 minutes then reduce the heat to low and cook for another 10 minutes.

Let the pressure go down by itself and then open the cover.
After pressure cooking the rajma, they should be soft and some of them will open up.
Discard any leftover water from pressure cooking.

To prepare the rajma, heat the oil in a pan on medium heat.
Once hot add bay leaf and saute for 30 seconds.
Then add chopped onions and sprinkle some salt.
Cook the onions till they get light brown in color.
Saute ginger, turmeric and garlic for a minute.
Add tomato.
Mix well and let it cook till all the moisture is evaporated and oil starts to leave the sides of the pan. do stir in between to make sure that it is not sticking to the pan.
Add all spice powders. Mix well and cook for 10 minutes.
Add the beans, cook for 10 more minutes, and enjoy over rice.

Aloo Saag

In Hindi, aloo means potatoes and saag means spinach. This classic side dish can also be made with kale or collard greens.
You will need:
2 tablespoons sunflower oil or ghee (clarified butter)
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, sliced
1 inch each of freshly chopped turmeric and ginger
2 large potatoes, cut into chunks
½ tsp each: salt, cumin, and garam masala
1 tablespoon mustard
2 cups spinach leaves

Heat the oil in a large pan.
Add the onion, garlic and ginger, and fry for about 3 minutes.
Stir in the potatoes and spices.
Continue cooking and stirring for 5 minutes more.
Add a splash of water, cover, and cook for 8-10 minutes.

Check the potatoes are ready by spearing with the point of a knife, and if they are, add the spinach and let it wilt into the pan.

Take off the heat and serve with grilled chicken or cooked beans and rice.


Kitchari means mixture, usually of two grains. This is one kitchari recipe that is particularly nourishing and easy to digest. I like to prepare the rice and lentils separately and mix them in my bowl.

For the rice:
Rinse 1 cup long grain brown rice.
Bring to a boil with 2 cups water. Reduce heat to simmer and cook, with lid askew, for 30 minutes.
In a skillet, heat 1 Tablespoon ghee or coconut oil with:
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon each: mustard seed, cumin seed, cumin powder, coriander powder
1 inch each of freshly chopped turmeric and ginger

When seeds start popping, turn off heat and slowly pour mixture into cooking rice.
You can add zucchini, summer squash, peas, cauliflower, broccoli or asparagus to the rice.

For the dahl:
Rinse 2 cups yellow split lentils. Drain and bring to a boil with 5 cups water.
Reduce heat to medium and cook, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Skim off any white foam that develops and discard it.

In a skillet, heat 1 Tablespoon ghee or coconut oil with:
1 teaspoon each: salt, cumin powder, coriander powder and garam masala
1 inch each of freshly chopped turmeric and ginger

Add vegetables such as beets, carrots, sweet potatoes, collards, kale and spinach to the skillet. Add 1 cup water, cover, and simmer on low heat for 15 minutes. Mix into the lentils, stir, and enjoy!

August 27, 2017

Gluten-Free Maple Gingerbread

The nights are getting cooler here in Vermont, and I am thinking about the kinds of warming, blood-building foods that will strengthen our immune systems in preparation for the colder months.

Molasses is an excellent source of iron, supports blood and heart health, and is packed with minerals. Try to find sorghum molasses, which is derived from a low-glycemic, gluten-free grain: sorghum. A relative of millet, sorghum is native to North Africa. It is a warming and tonic food that helps build fluids in the body and regulates digestion. When boiled, it creates a delicious and rich syrup that takes this recipe to another level.

If you cannot find sorghum, unsulphured cane sugar molasses will do just fine.

This recipe is rich in medicinal spices to balance blood sugar (cinnamon), support digestion and endocrine health (nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon), and ward off the cold and flu (ginger and cloves).

Maple Gingerbread

You will need:
1 cup sorghum or millet flour
1/2 cup almond flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
a pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon each: cloves and nutmeg
1 teaspoon each: cinnamon and ginger
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup hot water
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grease a baking dish with coconut oil. I use either an 8x8 dish or a loaf pan.
Mix all ingredients together in the order listed.
Spread evenly into baking dish and bake for 25 minutes.
Check for done-ness by inserting a knife blade into the center of the bread.
Bake for 5 to 10 more minutes if necessary.
Cool 10 minutes before slicing.

July 19, 2017

Summer Salads and Dressings

Summer is a time of heightened activity, longer days. It's also an opportunity to slow down, nourish ourselves, soak up the sun, and prepare for winter. The more we relax and reduce stress in the summer, the healthier we will remain during the colder months.

Try these recipes to strengthen digestion and promote relaxation.

Lemon Garlic Dressing

You will need:
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 small clove garlic, crushed
¼ teaspoon each salt and black pepper

Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl. 

Drizzle over salad. Serves 8.

GET CREATIVE! Add ¼ cup freshly chopped dill.

Red Wine Vinaigrette

You will need:
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon honey
¼ teaspoon each salt and black pepper

Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl. 

Drizzle over salad. Serves 8.

GET CREATIVE! Add ¼ cup freshly chopped parsley.

Balsamic Vinaigrette

You will need:
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
¼ teaspoon tamari or soy sauce
1 teaspoon maple syrup

Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl. 

Drizzle over salad. Serves 8.

GET CREATIVE! Add ¼ cup freshly chopped basil.

Kohlrabi Potato Salad

Kohlrabi is extremely high in protein for a vegetable! It's a digestive aid as well. Enjoy it.

You will need:
1 pound potatoes or any kind
½ pound kohlrabi
¼ cup fresh spinach, chopped
⅓ cup roughly chopped dill
3 tablespoons mustard
one batch of lemon garlic salad dressing (see recipe above)

Steam or boil potatoes and kohlrabi in until tender, about 15 minutes.

Drain and place in a serving bowl. Toss with spinach, dill, mustard and salad dressing. 

Serve warm or at room temperature.

GET CREATIVE! Add ¼ cup sunflower seeds.

Corn Salad

Please choose non-GMO corn whenever possible.

You will need:
½ cup apple cider vinegar
¼ cup olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 cups fresh peas
3 ears corn, husks and silks discarded, kernels sliced from cobs and reserved
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 avocado, chopped

Whisk vinegar, oil, salt, and pepper in a large bowl; set aside.

Bring a 2 quart saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add peas and cook until bright green and tender, 1–2 minutes.

Drain and add to bowl along with remaining ingredients; toss to combine.

Let sit for 30 minutes before serving.

GET CREATIVE! Add ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese.

July 1, 2017

Vegan Chia Burgers

Summer is drenching Vermont in rain to the point of flooding. Farmers are doing everything possible to secure crops and we are watching puddles turn into pools in our garden. We hope that this damp weather will pass so that plants may flourish once again.

Meanwhile, we are trying to dry the dampness with warming, nourishing foods that still feature summer ingredients.

These chia burgers fit the bill.

Chia, a member of the sage family, has delicious, peppery, edible seeds that are high in protein and fiber.They are a great replacement for eggs and taste delicious in sweet and savory dishes alike.

Corn is a wonderful food for summer. From digestive support to blood sugar balance, it is a healing food as long as it’s not genetically modified. Ask your farmer where they get their seeds and check for the non-GMO label on corn products in the store.

Corn fiber supports the growth of friendly bacteria in our large intestine. It is rich in B-complex vitamins and has about 5 grams of protein per cup. Fiber and protein make corn a great food blood sugar control.

Vegan Chia Burgers

You will need:
1/2 cup cornmeal (non GMO)
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 medium zucchini, grated
1 medium carrot, grated
1/3 cup olive oil

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Mix all ingredients together.

Oil a cookie sheet with olive or sunflower oil.

Shape dough into patties and flatten each one onto the cookie sheet.

Bake for 15 minutes, cool and enjoy.

They pair well with pesto and grilled chicken or cod.

June 20, 2017

Coconut Almond Cake With Blueberry Lemon Glaze

Summer is here! Berries are one of my favorite aspects of summer cooking and eating. They are so high in healing plant compounds, low on the glycemic index, and naturally sweet. I take every opportunity to savor them during their short season.

This recipe features blueberries, which are high in phytonutrients that reduce inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. They lower triglycerides and protect cells and blood vessels in the heart. Blueberries improve memory, support the nervous system, and balance blood sugar. Try to eat 1 cup of blueberries daily to reap their health benefits.

Coconut Almond Cake

This cake is gluten-free, grain-free, and high in protein. 

You will need:
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 1/2 cups almond flour
1/4 cup shredded coconut (optional)
1 teaspoon baking powder
a pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup milk of any kind
4 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Melt coconut oil in a 9x9 cake pan in the oven.
Mix all the ingredients together in the order listed.
Pour the melted coconut oil into the bowl and mix well.
Pour batter into cake pan.
Bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted.

Blueberry Lemon Glaze

This is truly the icing on the cake!

You will need:
2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon each: cinnamon and cardamom
a pinch of salt
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1/2 lemon

Mix all ingredients together in a sauce pan and simmer on medium heat for 5 minutes.

Cool slightly before pouring it over the cake.
Set aside to cool for 15 minutes.

It's even more delicious the next day after the glaze soaks into the cake.

June 18, 2017

Solstice Wraps

Summer solstice is upon us. Fireflies decorate the night skies and the first strawberries are ripe in our garden. We are harvesting nettles and red clover galore and making sun tea with red clover, chamomile, lemon balm and tulsi.

Now is the time to strengthen yourself. Now is the time to soak in the verdant wonder of summer as a way to prepare for winter.

Try this green recipe to inspire you. It reminds me of my time living in Indonesia.

Lettuce Wraps

You will need:
1 can chickpeas, drained (I like Eden brand)
1 ripe avocado, peeled and seeded
2 cucumbers, finely chopped
1/2 bunch scallions, chopped
1/2 bunch cilantro, minced
1 tablespoon lime juice
salt and pepper to taste
4 large lettuce leaves
Sprouts (optional)

Pour chickpeas into a bowl and mash them.
Add in the avocado and continue mashing until well mixed and a consistency to your liking.
Add cucumber, scallions, cilantro and lime juice and stir until mixed. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Divide salad mix into 4 servings and spoon each serving into a lettuce leaf.

Top with sprouts if you like and enjoy with peanut dipping sauce.

Peanut Sauce

You will need:
¾ cup creamy peanut butter (unsweetened)
3 tablespoons rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup water
3 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated or minced
2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)

In a mixing bowl, whisk together all the ingredients until well blended.

Adjust to taste. Add honey, tamari, or water to achieve the desired consistency and flavor.

Enjoy with lettuce wraps!

May 18, 2017

Green Lasagna

Spring is finding its way into summer here in Vermont. As we approach next week's new moon and the possibilities that it brings, consider ways to bring more vegetables into your life. This shift offers a host of benefits: from improved digestion and immunity to healthier skin and balanced weight.

Try this vegetarian lasagna recipe to inspire you.

Green Vegetarian Lasagna

You will need:
2 packages gluten-free lasagna noodles, oven ready (I like De Bole's brand)
1 stick butter
2 cups grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
1/2 cup milk
2 large yellow onions
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon each: thyme and oregano
3 cups cremini mushooms
5 medium zucchini
3 cloves garlic
Two 15 ounce cans (canellini white kidney) beans (I like Eden Organics) or 3 cups cooked dry beans

I like this recipe because you can prepare the two sauces on a day off, assemble the lasagna whenever you have time, and refrigerate it for up to a day before baking it.

Chop the onions and saute them in olive oil for 15 minutes on medium heat, stirring often.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Add thyme and oregano.

Coarsely chop and add zucchini.

Saute for 5 more minutes and then set aside to cool.
Blend with immersion or upright blender until you get a smooth sauce.

Then, prepare the second sauce.
Melt the butter in a deep skillet.

Chop the mushrooms into bite-sized pieces and add them to the butter.
Cover and cook on low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add salt and black pepper to taste.
Mince garlic and add that to the mushrooms.

Add cooked beans and milk.
Stir well saute for 3 or 4 more minutes, then and turn off heat.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Oil a 9 x 13 glass baking dish with olive oil.
Assemble the lasagna by first spreading a thin layer of the mushroom bean sauce on the bottom.
Place noodles on top and make sure that they do not overlap for even baking.
Spread the zucchini sauce over the noodles.
Cover with a generous helping of grated Parmigiano.

Add another layer of the mushroom bean sauce, more noodles, zucchini sauce, and cheese.
Repeat until you get to the top of the dish. I usually make 4 layers.
After you lay down your last layer of noodles, do not add more zucchini. Just cover them with cheese and then wrap the dish tightly with aluminum foil. It's ok if it mounds over. It will settle as it bakes.

Bake for 50 minutes.
Remove foil, turn broiler on high, and broil for 3 to 4 minutes or until cheese is bubbling.

Serve immediately with a side salad.

April 5, 2017

Spring Cleanse

Green spring tonics are a time-honored tradition to encourage gentle liver and gall bladder renewal. 
Leafy greens, both wild and cultivated, are some of the most nutrient dense vegetables of all, and we’ll discuss their nutrition as well as many other health benefits. 

This is a time when we transition from Winter hibernation to Summer growth. Because we are part of the earth and it cycles, it’s crucial to align with this seasonal change by strengthening digestion and immunity.

Certain foods and culinary herbs are specifically indicated for supporting this transition. They tend to be ones that promote digestive and eliminative function, or strengthen the immune and endocrine (hormonal) systems.

In Traditional Chinese Five Element Theory (TCM), the flavor of Spring is sour. 
The sour flavor and the wood element influence the liver and gall bladder. Sour foods include vinegar, horseradish, sauerkraut (and other lacto-fermented vegetables), lemon, rye, turnips, greens, quinoa, millet, fennel, and caraway seeds. Sourness has an astringent and consolidating effect in the body. It can control diarrhea and excess perspiration or help focus a scattered mind.

Sour foods will help us harmonize Spring. In India’s time-honored tradition of Ayurvedic Medicine, spring is known as the Kapha season. Kapha, the earth element, is heavy, grounded, and can feel stuck when it is out of balance. While spring waters are flowing and mud is everywhere, uplift your body, mind, and spirit, with a daily walk, deep breathing, and sour food.

I was raised in the European / Mediterranean tradition, where we harvested dandelion greens each spring to make a bitter and delicious salad with olive oil, salt, vinegar, and grated carrots. I remember how much my grandmother loved vinegar. She dressed our salads generously with this sour liquid. Thank goodness for the carrots to temper the sour and bitter flavors for an overall harmonious effect.

Food-Based Cleanse

Spring is also wonderful time to cleanse the internal organs with delicious fruit and vegetable juices. If you do not have a juicer, just use a food processor and strain out the pulp before drinking the juice. You can keep juice in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. 

Juice recipes and health benefits:
  • To strengthen digestion - 1 granny smith apple, 2 carrots, 1 beet
  • To support the liver - beet greens, 1 beet, 3 stalks celery, 2 inches fresh ginger root
  • To cleanse the blood - 1 beet, 2 carrots, 1 granny smith apple, 2 handfuls fresh parsley
Enjoy! Drink a small glass of juice three times daily, from just after you wake up to times of low energy between meals.

If you like, you can take the leftover pulp and bake it into bread or savory muffins!
2 cups pulp
1 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon salt

Bake at 350 degrees in an oiled pan for 35 minutes.
Spread with tahini, lemon and olive oil for a delicious spring breakfast!

Regardless of whether or not you are able to drink fresh juice, you can lighten your diet and include more lacto-fermented vegetables, bitter greens, lemon juice, and whole grains in your meals.
For a week, try to eliminate the following foods, which can tax the liver, gall bladder, and lymph over time:
  • alcohol, caffeine, carbonated beverages
  • meat: white fish is ok once during the week if it helps you meet your protein needs
  • cheese, cream, ice cream: choose avocados, coconut milk, roasted root vegetables, baked apples
  • popcorn, crackers, cookies
  • products containing sorbitol or xylitol (sugar-free gum and candies)
  • refined sugar: choose raw honey or maple syrup
  • gluten and processed grains like pasta/bread: choose spring grains like quinoa, amaranth, buckwheat, and millet
Instead, enjoy the fresh nourishment of fruits, vegetables, beans, lentils, nuts, and whole grains. Garnish food with high quality olive oil or flax oil and lemon juice.

Breakfast ideas:
Quinoa porridge with carrot spread and almonds
Baked sweet potatoes with hard-boiled eggs
Scrambled eggs with spinach and quinoa
Roasted roots with hard-boiled eggs
Baked acorn squash with tahini (roasted sesame seed butter), coconut butter, and cinnamon

Lunch and Dinner:
Use recipes from the "spring" category of this blog.

Keep these on hand along with chopped carrot and celery sticks when you need a snack as you are cooking! Remember that flavor, which comes from spreads and spices, is crucial to enjoying your food.

Miso broth
Granola bar
Smoothie or juice (more juice and smoothie recipes on my blog)
Apple or orange

Dandelion root tea and a glass of warm water with lemon juice in the morning
At least 3 quarts water daily
Herbal tea in the evening: Traditional Medicinals’ Detox tea is a nice choice

Would you like more specific guidance, meal plans, and recipes for your cleanse? Try my two-week, food-based cleanse. Learn more here.

February 14, 2017

Baby Cakes

Happy Valentine's Day! My daughter is indeed a Valentine baby: she will turn one year old on Thursday. Her presence in my life has eclipsed all other priorities and it is a joy to witness her grow, learn and thrive each day.

May this day remind you of the love that is always in our hearts when we relax, breathe deeply, and open to our unlimited potential. What brings you joy? What nourishes you? Ask yourself these two questions each morning and set out to live a day filled with joy and nourishment. This practice of self-love spreads love to others and helps cultivate happiness, even during troubled times.

As my daughter learns to feed herself, I have been exploring new sources of nourishment that can be fulfilling for us both. The wonderful food solution we have both been enjoying lately is baby cakes: small pancakes made of eggs and vegetables. I add a few spices and some oil to bring flavor and soothe the nervous system. Try these combinations and let me know what you think!

All of these freeze well and reheat easily in a toaster or toaster oven.

Sweet Potato Baby Cakes

High in beta carotene and vitamin A, sweet potatoes soothe the nerves, balance the endocrine system, and promote healthy elimination.

You will need:
2 eggs
2 tablespoons flaxseed meal
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon each: cinnamon and nutmeg
2 cups sweet potato, boiled and drained

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Boil sweet potatoes with just enough water to cover. It will take about 10 minutes for them to be tender.

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend well.

Bake at 375 on an oiled cookie sheet for 10 minutes.
Flip and bake 5 minutes more.
Cool and enjoy.

I enjoy them with a vegetable and egg scramble or ground turkey with sauteed greens.

Carrot Chicken Baby Cakes

High in protein, pastured chicken contains all the essential amino acids necessary for muscle development and provides steady energy.

You will need:
2 eggs
1 cup cooked chicken
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon each: cinnamon and coriander
2 cups carrots, boiled and drained

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Chop and boil carrots with just enough water to cover. It will take about 20 minutes for them to be tender.

Boil or braise chicken for 20 minutes if bone-on and 10 minutes if boneless. Pull chicken off the bone if necessary and remove skin.

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend well.

Bake at 375 on an oiled cookie sheet for 10 minutes.
Flip and bake 5 minutes more.
Cool and enjoy.

I enjoy these with parsley pistou or pesto.

Spinach Squash Baby Cakes

High in fiber and iron, spinach is important for brain development and promotes healthy elimination.

You will need:
2 eggs
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon each: thyme and coriander
2 cups winter squash, baked and de-seeded
1 cup spinach, boiled and drained
1/2 cup buckwheat flour

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Place an acorn or carnival squash in the oven and bake for 45 minutes or until it's soft when pierced with a knife, Cut it open, remove seeds, and scoop out flesh. I like to make these at the same time as the spinach cakes so that I use up all my squash.

Boil spinach with a little water in the bottom of a small stock pot. It will only take a few minutes. Drain well.

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend well.

Bake at 375 on an oiled cookie sheet for 10 minutes.
Flip and bake 5 minutes more.
Cool and enjoy.

Blueberry Baby Cakes

High in resveratrol for balanced blood pressure and antioxidants for stress reduction, blueberries are a superfood for all of us!

You will need:
2 eggs
2 tablespoons flaxseed meal
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon each: cinnamon and cardamom
1 cup winter squash, baked and de-seeded
1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup buckwheat flour

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Place an acorn or carnival squash in the oven and bake for 45 minutes or until it's soft when pierced with a knife, Cut it open, remove seeds, and scoop out flesh. I like to make these at the same time as the spinach cakes so that I use up all my squash.

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend well.

Bake at 375 on an oiled cookie sheet for 10 minutes.
Flip and bake 5 minutes more.
Cool and enjoy.

January 12, 2017

Metabolism-Boosting Meal Plan

Here on the homestead, winter tends to find us slowing down, eating rich, nourishing foods, and enjoying a more relaxed pace. As necessary as this shift is, it can lead to a more sluggish metabolism. We like to take one day a week to enjoy this cleansing, metabolism-boosting meal plan as a way of pressing the reset button on our eating and boosting our energy.

It's a great thing to try in honor of the full moon today, which is known by indigenous peoples of this land as the Wolf Moon. Howl at the moon, stimulate metabolic activity and restore your energy with these recipes.

All these spices boost the metabolism, support healthy digestion, and/or ward off the cold and flu. Many of the ingredients in these recipes also support healthy metabolic activity. You can learn more by exploring the culinary pharmacy here.


Coconut Chia Blueberry Pudding

You will need:
1 cup full fat organic coconut milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon each: cinnamon and cardamom
pinch of salt
1/3 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
3 tablespoons chia seeds
1/4 cup almonds, chopped

Combine coconut milk, water, cinnamon, cardamom and vanilla in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and let cook for 2 -3 minutes.

Add chia seeds, almonds and blueberries and mix well. Let stand for 5 minutes before eating.


Spiced Cauliflower Quinoa and Greens

For the roasted cauliflower:
1 head cauliflower, cut into bite-sized florets
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon each: turmeric and coriander
1/2 teaspoon each: salt, cinnamon and nutmeg

For the quinoa with greens:
2 teaspoons melted coconut oil or olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 inch fresh ginger root
1 teaspoon each: turmeric, chile flakes, cinnamon, and cumin
2 cups water
1 cup quinoa
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
4 cups kale

Roast the cauliflower: Preheat oven to 425. Toss the cauliflower florets with coconut oil and spices. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes on the middle rack, turning halfway, until the cauliflower is tender and golden on the edges.

Cook the quinoa: In a large pot with a lid, warm the coconut oil over medium heat.

Add the onion and ginger and cook about 5 minutes. Add spices and stir. Add water and quinoa.

Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to a simmer.

Chop kale and add it to the pot. Cook for 15 minutes, then remove the pot from heat.
Fluff the quinoa with a fork. Stir in the salt and vinegar. Divide the quinoa into bowls.

Top with roasted cauliflower.


Wild Rice and Mushroom Pilaf

You will need:
1 cup brown & wild rice blend
2 cups vegetable broth
1 tablespoon coconut oil1 large yellow onion, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
8 ounces shitake mushrooms, sliced
1 teaspoon each: sage, thyme, oregano and salt
½ cup chopped pecans

Combine the rice and vegetable broth in a large saucepan, bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer and cover for 35-40 minutes, cooking until the broth is completely absorbed.

While the rice is cooking, melt the coconut oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat and sauté the onion and celery until tender, about 8 minutes. Add in the garlic, mushrooms, sage, thyme, and salt, and sauté another 8 to 10 minutes, until the mushrooms are tender.

Combine the cooked rice and mushroom mixture, and stir in the pecans. Adjust any seasoning to taste, and serve warm.

Healthy Eating Program

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