The seasons have an influence on the doshas, so it’s important to adapt to the nature. The Vata season in this part of Canada extends the months from October to February. The nature of Vata is cold, dry, light, unstable and erratic and therefore herbs, foods, beverages and lifestyle habits used to pacify Vata should be opposite in nature, i.e. warming, moistening, heavy, stable and grounding. Two recipes for the cold season
Creamy Squash soup
- 2 cups Kabocha or butternut squash
- 1 tablespoon ghee or coconut oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1tsp mustard seeds
- ½ tsp fenugreek
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- Salt as per taste
- 1 green chilli finely chopped (optional)
- 1 inch piece of ginger peeled and finely chopped
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 2 cups water
- 1 tsp organic raw sugar or as per taste
- 1 table spoon grated fresh coconut for garnish (optional)
- Cilantro for garnish.
- Peel the squash and cut into 2 inch pieces. Bake or steam squash till cooked. Kabocha squash does not need to be peeled. The green skin becomes soft on cooking and it cooks very easily.
- Heat ghee or coconut oil. Add fenugreek seeds, followed by mustard seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric powder, fresh ginger and chopped green chilli.
- Add cooked squash and then add water, salt and coconut milk. Gently simmer for 10 minutes.
- With an immersion blender liquefy the soup.
- Add little vegetable broth if necessary.
- Add organic raw sugar to balance the taste.
- Garnish with cilantro and shredded fresh coconut.
- Serve with brown rice or couscous.
Moong Beans soup
- 1 cup Moong beans
- 5 cups of water
- Half Onion chopped finely
- 1” piece of fresh ginger finely chopped
- 1 small tomato (optional)
- 2 large cloves of garlic finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 2-3 whole cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick of 2”
- Salt to taste
- A few Curry leaves
- 1 teaspoon Mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon Cumin seeds
- A pinch of Asafoetida
- 1 Tbsp Ghee
- 2 Tbsp Cilantro for Garnishing
- Soak Moong beans in water for 4-6 hours. Rinse the beans and add fresh water.
- Boil Moong beans with 3 cups of water, turmeric and salt for about 25 minutes. Add 2 more cups of water and cook till it is buttery soft.
- Asafoetida in this order. Wait few moments between each addition of the spice to release the aroma. Keep the temperature low to medium, otherwise the spices will burn.
- Add chopped onion and fry till soft, add garlic and ginger and fry for 2 minutes, followed by tomatoes. Cook the tomatoes till softened.
- Add cooked Moong dhal and check the seasoning. Add little water if desired.
- Garnish with cilantro and serve with fresh whole wheat chappati or cooked quinoa with steamed root vegetables.
Neelam Toprani is an Ayurvedic researcher and the formulator of Sewanti herbal remedies and Padmashri massage oils. Neelam has been studying various healing modalities and eastern spiritualties from many masters.
One of the objectives her Company is to take the timeless wisdom of Ayurveda and translate it into practical solutions to improve the quality of life.The company is based in Vancouver, Canada.