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Spicy Cumin Eggplant

Categories: Blood Stasis, Gluten-free, Indian, Liver Blood Stasis, Liver Qi Stagnation, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

EggplantPan

SPICY CUMIN EGGPLANT

1 medium eggplant, peeled
1 bell pepper, chopped
4 tbsp sunflower oil
¾ tsp cumin seeds
½ tsp mustard seeds
½ tsp tumeric
1/8 tsp hing (asafetida)
1 tsp sea salt
½ cup chick pea flour
1 tbsp onion chopped
½ tsp chilli powder
2 tsp coriander powder

wash and peel eggplant, cut into 1 inch cubes. In heavy skillet, heat oil, add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. When the mustard seeds pop, add turmeric, hing, onion and pepper. Then add eggplant and salt, mix well. Cover and cook 5 min. eggplant gets soft. Remove lid and add chickpea flour and remaining ingredients. Mix well and cook uncovered 5-7 min over medium heat. Stir so flour will not stick or burn. Serve with dal and rice, barley or millet.

By Anna Strong

TCM ANALYSIS

Eggplant: sweet, light, oily, cool. SP/ST/LI. Clears heat, moves blood, breaks stasis.
Bell pepper: sweet, oily, warm. Invigorates qi.
Turmeric: warming, bitter. Reduces tumors, decongests liver.
Cumin: warming
Sea salt: cold, salty. Cools heat, cools blood.
Mustard seeds: warming benefit lung
Chilli powder: acrid, hot.

Overall analysis:
The dish balances itself nicely with a combination of warming spices and cooling eggplant. The eggplant and turmeric both work well for blood stasis breaking.

Cornbread

Categories: Gluten-free, Qi Vacuity, Side Dishes, Spleen Qi Vacuity, Vegetarian

corn-bread

CORNBREAD

1 cup cornmeal
1 cup rice flour
1 tsp sea salt
21/2 tsp baking powder
4 tbsp sunflower oil
1 egg
1 tsp brown rice syrup
1 cup milk

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Ligthly oil an 8 by 8 inch pan. Sift together dry ingredients. Whisk the egg and stir in the rest of the wet ingredients. Stir the 2 mixtures together. Put in pan and bake for 2-25 minutes.

Cornmeal–sweet, neutral. Enters SP/ST/UB. Strengthens spleen and stomach.
Rice flour–sweet, neutral. Enters SP/ST. Supplements Spleen and Stomach.
Sea salt –salty, cold. Enters KD. Clears heat, cool the blood. Eases bowel movement, nourishes KD
Sunflower oil –sweet, neutral. Enters LI/SP. Lowers B.P. Lubricates Large Intestine.
Egg –sweet, neutral. Enters SP/ST/LU. Nourishes yin and blood. Supplements SP,ST.
Brown rice syrup –sweet, sl. Warm. Enters SP/ST. Supplements Qi, soothes stomach, drains damp.
Milk –sweet, neutral. Enters SP, ST, LU. Supplements Qi, Nourish blood, moisten dryness,

Overall analysis of recipe: This cornbread is very building of the Spleen and Stomach Qi. It also will help nourish the blood which is often weak in the case of Sp qi deficiency.

What is gluten sensitivity and how do you know if you have it?

Categories: Articles, Gluten-free

People may have noticed in the last few years, more and more gluten-free products have been making there way to grocery store shelves. First of all, gluten is the protein found in wheat, barley, oats, and rye. Anyone can develop gluten intolerance at any point in their lives. Common triggers include stress, surgery, pregnancy, or illness. The important thing to remember is, gluten and casein (the protein found in milk) are two of the most difficult to digest proteins we encounter. It is hard on everybody to digest these proteins. Certain people find it even more difficult and problems ensue. It is not just gastro-intestinal; chronic fatigue, brain fog, depression, pain, migraines have all been dramatically alleviated with the removal of gluten from the diet. Also, it is common for kids on the autistic spectrum to be on gluten-free casein-free diets, as this diet has been demonstrated in many cases to effectively treat autism.

To find out if you are sensitive to gluten, you can either have your doctor do a blood test or try an elimination diet. The blood test must include testing for IgA and IgG antibodies. Because gluten sensitivity is not a true allergy, it will not show up with traditional IgE allergy tests. With IgG sensitivities, the effect is cumulative and takes anywhere from 3-72 hours to manifest. US Biotek is a laboratory which offers food sensitivity panels which can tell you if you are sensitive to gluten or a host of other foods: www.usbiotek.com. If you are not able to get a blood test right away, or, just want to see if your health will improve by eliminating gluten, try an elimination diet. Most people for whom gluten is a problem will notice positive changes within days of avoiding all gluten products, however, it is best to stay on the diet for at least a month. It is imperative to be very strict and research the hidden sources of gluten. Items on nutritional labels–artificial color, brown rice syrup, hyrdolyzed vegetable protein, modified food starch, natural flavors–to name a few, can all be made from either wheat or barley. Unless you call the manufacturer, you don’t know. There is a lot of hype and information out there. www.gfcfdiet.com has free and comprehensive lists of products that do not contain gluten. The real test will be when you re-introduce gluten back into the diet. It is important to re-introduce in an intentional way and consume a relatively large amount of the protein and then monitor yourself closely for any re-emerging symptamology.

CARROT, KALE, AND WAKAME STEW

Categories: Heart Fire, Phlegm Nodules & Interior Heat, Shen Calming, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

by Anna Strong

¼ cup wakame

1 tbsp olive oil

1 small yellow onion

2 small carrots, diced

1 celery rib, diced

1 15 oz can cannellini beans

1 ½ cup frozed lima beans, thawed

6 cups low sodium vegetable broth

1 bunch kale, chopped

¼ tsp dried oregano

1/8 tsp ground nutmeg

1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

  • Place the wakame in small bowl, cover with cold water, and soak 15 min. drain, squeeze liquid out, and set aside.
  • Heat oil in sauce pan.  Add onions, celery, and saute 3-5 min.  add cannelinni beans, lima beans and broth.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, simmer covered for 10 min.
  • Transfer half the soup to food processor and puree.  Stir mixture into remaining soup in pot. Add kale;cook for 5 minutes. Stir in oregano, cayenne, nutmeg, and drained wakame.

Wakame:  salty, cold.  LV, ST, KD.  Softens hardness, dissipates nodules, dissolves phlegm. Clears heat.

Yellow onion:  acrid, neutral.  LU, ST  transforms phlegm and damp

Carrots:  sweet, neutral.  SP,LV, LU, HT.  strengthens spleen and heart.  Soothes Liver.  drains damp.

Celery: sweet. LV. Clears heat, resolves toxins.

Lima bean:  cooling, sweet.  LV/LU.  Increases yin fluids.

Kale: warming, sweet, bitter-acrid. LU/ST

Cayenne pepper: warm, acrid

Nutmeg: warm, sweet

Overall:

Carrots have an affinity for the heart and will take this stew there to cool the heart and help those who have heat and phlegm in combination presenting the hardening and nodulation.  The wakame is excellent for softening hardness as well as drawing the heart fire downward.  Lima beans will increase yin to also cool off the heart fire.