Spinach and Chicory Salad to Balance Kapha

 

The bitter, astringent and pungent tastes of spinach and chicory and the light, hot and dry properties of this salad are especially beneficial during the cool, wet Kapha season.

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For the Salad

2 cups spinach, washed and torn into bite-sized pieces

1 small head chicory—radicchio type—torn into pieces

1/2 cup red cabbage, thinly shredded

3 or 4 radishes, thinly sliced

3 tablespoons blanched, slivered almonds

 

For Kapha Vinaigrette

1/4 cup oil

1 tablespoon warm water

1 tablespoon vinegar or fresh lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon dry mustard

Kapha churna, or turmeric, pepper, coriander, and ginger to taste

 

Mix all the vinaigrette ingredients in a small jar. Cover and shake vigorously. Place the spinach in a serving bowl and pour the vinaigrette over it. Toss well. Add remaining vegetables, toss again, cover. Sprinkle with almonds before serving

 

Cooling Alternative Vinaigrette

Salads also pacify Pitta. When the weather is hot, this is a more cooling salad dressing:

1/2 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons warm water

2 teaspoons Pitta Churna, or coriander, cardamom and turmeric to taste

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons vinegar or fresh lemon juice

Remember that raw foods can be hard to digest, especially in the summer when our internal digestive fire is diminished (in response to the high external heat.) Enjoy salads at noon when your digestive fire is at its peak. Favor warm, cooked food in the evening. Do not have cold or iced drinks with your meal. Make sure your salad is at room temperature.

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Special Foods For Kapha Season

Fruit

Desserts for springtime Kapha season should be fruits, fruit tarts, or pies made without sugar. Apple juice or dried fruits such as raisins can be added to many recipes as a sweetener. Dried fruits also make excellent desserts.

Kapha Spices

During Kapha season you’ll want to season your food with the spices that reduce Kapha. These include all spices except salt. Remember, avoiding does not mean going without. Just don’t add extra salt or eat salty foods.

RECIPE FOR KAPHA SEASON FROM THE KITCHEN OF THE RAJ AYURVEDA HEALTH SPA

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Deep Dish Apple Pie

Makes 6 to 8 servings. (Just spoon the filling into a 1 1/2 quart casserole and top with pastry)

6 or more medium, sweet organic apples

1 cup raisins

1/2 to 1 teaspoon cinnamon

pinch of nutmeg

1 thawed can of grape-apple juice concentrate

1 tablespoon cornstarch

Preheat oven to 450°

Rollout your favorite since crust pastry

In a small saucepan, use I tablespoon cornstarch to thicken the thawed grape-apple just concentrate.

Slice apples. In a large bowl, toss apple slices with cinnamon and nutmeg. Carefully pour juice over apples, then fold the apples into the juice mixture. Alternative layer the apples and raisins in the deep dish. The apples will cook down. Cover with crust. Seal and flute edges. Pierce crust. Protect edges of the crust from burning (see below.) Bake at 450° for 10 minutes and remove whatever you are using to protect your crust. Bake for another 35 to 40 minutes at 375°, or until crust is golden and filling is bubbly.

For years bakers covered the edge of their pie crusts with aluminum foil to keep the edges from burning. However, a growing concern about impact of  aluminum on health has led many cooks to look for alternative solutions. Turning a second pie plate or baking dish over the top of your crust is one easy solution.

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