The old adage “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” turns out to have some basis in fact. Apples are a good source of pectin, known to promote a healthy gut biome, and to help lower cholesterol and blood sugar.
In Ayurvedic terms, raw apples are cold and dry making them a good summer treat. They are especially good for Pitta types who tend towards overheating and are the last to stop wearing shorts and sandals when the weather turns cold.
Pitta is characterized by fire and water, a steamy combination that, when in excess, promotes emotions like anger or jealousy, cravings for cold drinks and food, weakness, frequent hunger or thirst and perfectionism.
As we move from pitta season into vata, notice if you feel symptoms of pitta imbalance. If so, eating raw apples can help. Their drying quality also makes them a good choice for kapha folks.
While raw apples aggravate vata, causing digestive upsets like constipation, cooking them makes them more vata friendly, as does adding spices.
Which is why baked apples are a great choice for anyone as late autumn comes along and we transition from pitta season into vata.
Recipe: Baked Apples
4 organic apples (for best results the folks at Bon Appetit recommend choosing from Jonagold, Pink Lady, Braeburn, HoneyCrisp, Crispin, or Winesap when making baked apples)
2 C apple juice
1 T cinnamon
¼ t cardamom (or nutmeg if you prefer)
¼ t organic lemon peel (or substitute 1 t lemon juice)
½ C raisins
¼ C sunflower seeds
Ghee (or unsalted butter)
- Preheat the oven to 350° f.
- Place washed and cored apples in an 8” x 8” baking dish.
- Mix the raisins, spices, and seeds. Stuff firmly into the cored apples.
- Add apple juice; for an even richer taste, dot the center of each apple with ghee (or butter).
- Cover and bake for 45 minutes or until tender.
Recipe by Amadea Morningstar, author of The Ayurvedic Cookbook. Also on Banyan Botanicals.