All posts tagged: ayurvediccooking

Feature Food: Banana (“Kadali”)

There are two species of Banana’s – Musa acuminata (the common fruit) and Musa balbisiana (plantain or green banana that’s used as a vegetable). Additionally there are hybrids and offsprings, but they all stem from these 2 original wild species. I will share the Ayurvedic view of the common Banana fruit (Musa acuminata), known as “Kadali” in Sanskrit. The Benefits: “Banana cures obesity, kapha, diseases of the vagina, causes constipation, improves colour and destroys poisoning.” (Lodhradi Gana).(1) Banana is a good remedy for depression and a great replacement to snacking on chocolate as a comfort food. When depression is caused by quality of dryness, bananas actually grant courage and fortitude.- (This does not mean to indulge in Banana when feeling down, eat everything in moderation). It mitigates Pitta due to sweet taste, however if eaten in excess can increase pitta. It increases stomach acid – beneficial for those with too little acid. High in Potassium – Potassium levels are important for those whose sodium/salt intake is high and for nerves and muscles. High in Vitamin B6 – …

Ayurvedic Porridge (Quick Cooking Time)

Here is a simple, nourishing and nutritious meal that only a takes a few minutes to prepare, and you don’t have to be a kitchen wizard to prepare it. Sweet First In Ayurveda, sweet is the first taste to start the day and also to start a meal (yep, ‘desert’ is the first thing you eat in Ayurveda). After you have fasted for some time, whether it be overnight or in between meals, your hunger = strong agni (digestion and appetite). You need strong agni to digest the sweet taste because it is the heaviest taste due to the earth element being dominant. Further, the sweet taste kick starts the agni and stimulates saliva secretions (Bodhaka Kapha), to prepare your digestion for the meal and/or day ahead. This is why when you finish with sweet (common desert at the end of a meal), you keep wanting more… and then you’ll begin to feel very “full” and heavy. Recipe + Method Put ghee in a pot, let it heat. Add 1/3 – 1/2 cup of coarse semolina or oats or rice flakes …

7 Ayurvedic Super Foods

According to modern science, food nutritionists, food industry leaders and dieticians, so called “superfoods” aren’t exactly “super.” Wikipedia describes that “Superfood is a marketing term used to describe foods with supposed health benefits..” The European Union has even prohibited the marketing of products as “superfoods,” unless accompanied by a specific medical claim supported by credible scientific research.(1) Not particularly inspiring…so I will redefine the word from an Ayurvedic perspective. First of all, there is no need to exaggerate that foods are “super.” Whatever one uniquely needs will be their superfood. Additionally, everything is actually superfood if you know how to transform and use it. In general, for a food to be “super” it must: 1.Promote ‘Sattva’ – Sattva is a quality in us that translates to “purity.” If Sattva is increased, then so is our inner stillness, clarity of mind and contentment. Love radiates and flows back to us in abundance, while the hormone oxytocin (also known as the “bonding hormone”) is simultaneously secreting. Fresh, seasonal whole foods are predominately Sattvic, thus increases the Sattvic …

KITCHARI: The Essential & Delicious Ayurvedic Dish

Beyond all other Indian meals, there is one considered to facilitate spiritual growth and effectively detox the body. Kitchari, pronounced Kich-ah-ree, has long been used to nourish babies and the elderly, the sick, and the healthy during special times of detox, cleansing, and deep spiritual practice. A simple porridge like blend of lentils, rice and spices, kitchari is a comfort and health food that has many nourishing and cleansing benefits. Everyone should eat Kitchari at least a couple to a few times a week to reset digestion and nourish your body and mind. Ingredients: Split yellow mung beans along with a long grain white, basmati, or red rice and a blend of traditional Indian spices. Why White Rice? White Rice is easier to digest because the husk has been milled off. While brown rice supplies more nutrients, the husk makes brown rice a little harder to digest. During cleansing, it is important to be gentle on an already compromised digestion. Generally brown rice is also ok. Red Rice is the best choice because it is most easily digested and is …

Summer Regimen

“Quantity of water gets reduced by the strong heat of the sun, rivers have very little water, trees have no shade under them because of falling of ripened leaves; the leaves, bark and entwining ceepers are all dried up.” – Astanga Samgraha, ch. 4 (27-37) Summertime… and the living is easy.. It’s also hot and dry! and it is wise to protect yourself by keeping cool, and work in harmony with this season to thrive during it. Imagine feeling prime The very hot sun takes away the strength of the earth, and all things on this earth. Scientists call this “thermal accumulation,” and particularly in the second half of summer you may begin to feel inner heat accumulate. Summer Pathogenesis The heat in your body rises, which can result in dry skin, sensitive, irritated, and dried out sinuses. You may notice your sinuses beginning to run a lot. Creating reactive mucus is the body’s response to this dryness. You may experience looser stools – the body’s response to to remove the heat. Your intestinal villi might be …

Ragi (Finger Millet) Porridge

What is Ragi? Ragi, also known as ‘finger millet’ is a popular cereal grown throughout Africa and Asia. It was introduced to India 4000 years ago and is grown in the Himalayas. It is generally purchased as a very fine pinky/brown flour which can be prepared as breads, dosas, porridges, puddings and cakes. It is an awesome and delicious flour in its own right. Properties of Ragi (Ayurvedic perspective) Rasa (Taste): Sweet Virya (Action): Heating Vipaka (Post-digestive effect): Sweet Qualities: Dry, Light Doshas: Balances Kapha, increases Vata and Pitta in excess. Medicinal Qualities Easy to digest Nourishing Treats high cholesterol, dull agni (digestive fire), diabetes, excess weight, and other excess kapha (mucus/fluid), (All millets have these actions.). Where do I get it? Raggi is not common in Australia (yet). You will find it in an Indian Grocery. RAGI PORRIDGE RECIPE PS. there is no chocolate, I swear, but it is tastier than chocolate, a little like a subtle cacao. The ragi roasted in ghee is what makes it look like melted chocolate. Gluten Free Serves 1 Ingredients: 2-3 tbsp …

Ayurvedic Buckwheat Pancakes

Here are light and easy to digest pancakes, that are quick and easy to make, and SUPER YUMMY! Serves 2-3      Gluten Free Good for Kapha, & Pitta body types Seasonality: Good in spring, winter and summer 
Ingredients: Buckwheat flour – 1⁄2 cup (a.k.a. “Kuttu flour” in Indian Groceries) Non-homogenized milk – 2 tbsp – (can replace with fresh almond milk or add millet & channa flour to make batter stick).  Water – 1 cup Cinnamon powder – 1⁄2 tsp Cardamom seeds crushed or cardamom powder – 1⁄2 tsp Ghee for frying Fresh coriander, fresh lemon and maple syrup (optional) for garnish. Method:  Mix all the ingredients, adding water a little at the time, to make a smooth, runny batter. Heat tawa or non-stick pan to low heat. Coat pan with 1-1.5 teaspoons of ghee, pour on batter to the size you want & spread to make a 
pancake. Optional: add chopped coriander and/or finely crushed macadamia nuts on the raw batter and spread to infuse in with batter. When bubbles start appearing on surface of pancake, spoon 1 teaspoon of ghee …

Feature Food: Eggplant 

photo: my favourite type of Eggplant. Field to Feast, NSW grows and sells them with a lot of love, thus promotes positive microbiology in the food simply through loving and positive organic farming! “Eggplant is the King of Vegetables, because it is the only vegetable that has a crown.” – Vaidya Dr. B.A. (Father) Raju Purification of foods and herbs – All foods and herbs should be first purified to clean them and enhance it’s potency. It is the transformation process of all herbs and foods which is essential for safe and effective use. No point of taking ‘super foods’ in high quantity and quality if it is not prepared the right way. Even one highly medicinal herb in Ayurveda, if not purified specifically by boiling it in milk, it will cause cancer. Most simple and common purification method is washing with water. To purify eggplant, soak in salt water for about 20mins, then pour out the black water (impurities). Then it is ready to be cooked. Eggplant should always be roasted to counter the Slimy quality. Medicinal effect …

Drop the Utensils, rather: Eat With Your Hands!

Ayurveda recommends eating with your fingers instead of utensils. Before you repel this gesture, if you feel to try this, you may be surprised by what it does for your digestion! and how much better food will taste and bring you enjoyment! One Thing at a Time – Eating with your hands means you can’t check email, read, text or answer the phone. With food all over your fingers, you are stuck doing one thing at a time and this is the time to eat. This allows us to relax and “dine.” Eating with such awareness is essential for optimum digestion and proper delivery of nutrients. People underestimate how much this can make a difference, and a lot of the time – HOW you eat is more important then what you eat. “The fingers are the sensors, and also the hand contains not only the planets, but all the nakshatras (constellations). So when you are eating with your hands it is satisfying everything [all the needs of your physiology because the planetary ‘map’ on your hands …