Winter, replete with the combination of space and air elements (vata), is famous for dishing up distress in the digestive department when vata becomes over abundant (dosha).
Therefore, even if we favor healthy foods, it will be hard for these foods to avail themselves of their nutrients for our assimilation if the digestive fire is not stoked properly. The quality of one’s digestion is directly proportionate to the quality of one’s overall health.
This is the reason for Ayurveda’s affinity for agni (digestive fire) that is well balanced.
Slow Down and Savor the Spices
Winter weather is often characterized by strong, erratic winds that have the brawn to blow us off course and send us spinning into a swivet. Couple this with cold temps and dryness and the dance of vata dosha begins. One solution is to slow down and enjoy a warm, moist, well cooked meal.
“Variety is the spice of life, that gives it all its flavor.” —William Cowper
This combination of cooling coriander with other spices that have heating energetics, creates a coalescence of savory satisfaction that warms and invigorates the intestines without creating dryness or irritation.
These spices improve digestion as they are carminative (reduce gas/bloating) and serve to stabilize blood sugar, promote circulation and reduce inflammation.
Enjoy this curry with seasonal vegetables and a generous slathering of soothing ghee.
Recipe: Curry Powder
5 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. ground fenugreek
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. mustard seeds, ground or whole (I like whole seeds because they pop when you heat them!)
1 tsp. ground clove
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
2 tsp. ground turmeric
1/4 tsp. ground bay leaf
Mix all ingredients together well in a bowl and transfer to a spice jar.
*Please note that there is no salt in this mix, but salt is necessary to bring out the flavors of the spices. Pink Himalayan salt can be added as you cook.
Recipe: Savory Sweet Potato, Sun Choke & Fennel
Serves 4 as a side dish
1.5 cups cubed sweet potato
1.5 cups cubed sun chokes
1 cup thinly sliced fennel
Approximately 2 tablespoons melted ghee
Approximately 1tablespoon curry powder
Pink Himalayan salt to taste
- Combine all vegetables in a baking dish.
- Drizzle the ghee over the vegetables and mix well to coat the vegetables evenly.
- Sprinkle the curry powder and salt over the vegetables and mix well again.
- Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes (stirring every 15 minutes) or until the vegetables are fork tender.
- Give thanks and enjoy!