Written by John Immel,
Ayurvedic Cooking - A Feast For Your SensesBy Lisa Moore
Ayurvedic cooking brings together a harmonious collection of fresh, wholesome ingredients to nourish the senses. A medley of colors, tastes, textures and flavors blend together to restore balance to your body, mind, spirit and emotions.
Tempeh, Bean Sprouts & Cucumber with Mint Coconut Sauce
Three kinds of crunch!
In general, the process of frying dries food out, making it harder to digest for Vata constitution, but this sauce helps moisturize the dryness of frying while sour lime primes the digestive juices. The cooling, refreshing herbs balance the heating, heavy murkiness of oil and coconut milk. The bitterness of the herbs stimulates the liver's ability to digest oil. Fresh ginger is pungent but does not provoke Pitta. Coconut milk makes a smooth sauce that pairs nicely with crispy, crunchy tempeh.
Potato Salad with Cilantro Yogurt Sauce
A backyard barbeque favorite
Potatoes are cooling and astringent. Yogurt smoothes over the dryness and roughness of astringency, making the potatoes more palatable. Cilantro directly cools high Pitta and inflammation. Cilantro and mint help lighten up the heaviness of potato and yogurt.
Kale with Coconut & Fennel
Bitter is Better
Bitters enhance and cleanse the digestive tract by stimulating movement (peristalsis) and the release of bile from the liver and gall bladder. Bitter taste pacifies Kapha and Pitta but aggravates Vata. Kale is an excellent bitter but is hard and chewy, which usually means hard to digest. Therefore, Kale should be cooked until it is soft and more digestible. The harshness and Vata aggravating components of bitter are offset by the stimulating effects of spices and salt. The sugar, coconut flakes and oil in this recipe add a heavy quality balancing the light quality of Kale.
Grape Juice Chai with Cardamom, Ginger, Turmeric
A sweet, refreshing tonic and cleanser
Grapes nourish the blood plasma and cool the blood's fire. Although sweet taste prevails, endowing grapes with a gentle laxative effect, they are also slightly astringent, toning the musculature of the bowels. Turmeric invigorates and cleans the blood. The soft coolness of the grape juice balances the intensity of turmeric. Cardamom and ginger help digest food stuck in the upper digestive tract, clearing the stomach creating a feeling of lightness.
Recipes submitted by John Joseph Immel, director and founder of Joyful Belly, an Ayurvedic diet and digestion clinic in Asheville, NC. Immel is a graduate of the Ayurvedic Institute taught by Dr. Vasant Lad. Learn your constitutional dosha and find more recipes at www.JoyfulBelly.com.
Raw or Cooked?
Raw food offers nutritional benefits but is more difficult to digest, causing gas and bloating. The nutritional benefits are then outweighed by the toxicity of food fermenting in the gut. Indigestible food is considered poison in Ayurveda.
The measure of good food is not just its contents, but its interaction with our body. Cooked food is easy to digest but destroys some vitamins and enzymes. Neither is superior. The real answer to the cooked or raw debate depends on the digestive strength of the individual. Pitta people have the strongest digestive strength and can tolerate more raw foods than other doshas. Taken from The Raw Versus Cooked Debate. My Saved Articles | Most Popular
About the AuthorJohn Immel, the founder of Joyful Belly, teaches people how to have a healthy diet and lifestyle with Ayurveda. His approach to Ayurveda exudes a certain ease, which many find enjoyable and insightful. John also directs Joyful Belly's School of Ayurveda , which specializes in digestive tract pathology & Ayurvedic nutrition. John and his wife Natalie recently published Explore Your Hunger: A Guide to Hunger, Appetite & Food.
John's interest in Ayurveda and digestive tract pathology was inspired by a complex digestive disorder acquired from years of international travel, including his public service work in South Asia. John's commitment to the detailed study of digestive disorders reflects his zeal to get down to the roots of the problem. His hope and belief in the capacity of each & every client to improve their quality of life is nothing short of a personal passion. John's creativity in the kitchen and delight in cooking for others comes from his family oriented upbringing. In addition to his certification in Ayurveda, John holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Harvard University.
John enjoys sharing Ayurveda within the context of his Catholic roots, and finds Ayurveda gives him an opportunity to participate in the healing mission of the Church. Jesus expressed God's love by feeding and healing the sick. That kindness is the fundamental ministry of Ayurveda as well.