favourite combinations

light & cleansing – green gram tovve, carrot palya, white basmati rice

14th June 2020

I like to prepare this combination when my digestion (agni) is out of balance and in need of something soothing, light and clean.  Our agni is what allows us to digest our food, assimilate the nutrients and let go of waste. When our digestive fire (agni) is working properly our overall health is at its optimal, leaving our mind clear and calm and our body energized.

This is a combination which has balancing vegetables, cleansing qualities and supports the calmness and quietness of the body and mind. Carrots are naturally sweet, good for yoga practice and they brighten up any dish you add them to. Split moong is therapeutic due it’s soothing and balancing qualities.

Prepare this, either as a first meal mid-morning or as a light dinner.

the menu:

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green gram tovve (yellow split moong dal)

Add finely chopped cabbage or chuchu towards the end of cooking.

carrot palya

Cut the carrot into small uniform cubes, instead of grating. When cooking, add a ¼ cup water and simmer uncovered until the water evaporates.

white basmati rice

To keep it light, and suitable for weaker digestion, serve with white rice apposed to brown. White rice is considered sattvic, which grounds and satisfies the mind.

Don’t forget to drizzle with 1 – 2 spoons of ghee to enhance the taste and aid digestion.

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DIGESTIVE FIRE

“Our digestive fire is a combination of many secretions, including pepsin, hydrochloric acid, bile, and other enzymes. Because there are variations of those secretions throughout the day, our digestion may be weak, or even not work at all, if we eat at wrong times.”

~ The Sacred Tradition of Yoga – Dr Shankaranarayana Jois ~

grounding & satisfying -whole moong with greens, grated beet & carrot salad, cucumber raita, round brown rice

6th June 2020

I have a little brown book the size of the palm of my hand where I write down combinations which have worked well and have become a weekly favourite. Whenever I lack inspiration in the kitchen, I refer to this little book.

I appreciate the aestheticism of things, so my cooking is very much inspired by this, also in terms of the colours I use. If I am using a lot of greens in one dish, like the dal used here, I add in bright colours which contrast nicely, like beetroot and carrot. This approach extends to the flavours, if the dal is spicy and strong, the accompanying dishes will be soft and light so that there isn’t competition between the dishes.

In the menu below, the dal is softly flavoured, so the spiciness of the ginger in the salad balances and enables the other dishes to shine.

The menu: 

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whole moong dal with garden greens – two variations

Prepare the soupy version of this recipe, adding in whatever greens are in the garden or fridge. Usually fennel or celery, then leafy greens towards the end: fenugreek leaves, coriander, kale or spinach. In the image above, I used fennel, then added fenugreek and coriander leaves towards the end of cooking.

grated beetroot & carrot salad

Prepare a simple version of this salad, using only grated beetroot and carrot, toasted sesame seeds and lots of ginger in the dressing. If you have sunflower sprouts or small bitter leaves on hand, add a handful of those to sprinkle over the top.

round brown rice

You could use basmati, but there is something pleasing about the plump texture of this small round rice with the dal. Keep it slightly undercooked so it doesn’t turn to mush.

raita

yoghurt, salt, fresh dill

Don’t forget to drizzle with 1 – 2 spoons of ghee to enhance the taste and aid digestion. Having a strong digestion enhances every aspect of your life.

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If you want to add more colour and texture, instead of serving the raita, crumble feta over the salad or slice an avocado decoratively. Ninety-five per cent of the time I keep it simple, without the addition of cheese or nuts, as the meal then becomes heavy on the system. The magic in this combination is that not only it tastes good but it is easy to digest which helps access the full nutrients and minerals of each of the ingredients leaving you feeling content, satisfied, brighter and lighter.

I hope this combination inspires, nurtures and nourishes you!

ENJOYMENT OF FOOD

“Eating food that tastes good to us is very important. Otherwise, we will not feel satisfied with our meal. The feeling of satisfaction brings balance to many emotions that are essential to a healthy human being. If we consume food that does not have the proper taste, there will be something lacking in our emotional state. Balanced emotions support us to enjoy both bhoga and yoga.”

~ The Sacred Tradition of Yoga – Dr Shankaranarayana Jois ~

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