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Curry Ice Cream

Categories: Desserts, Raw, Spleen Qi Vacuity, Stomach Yin Vacuity, Vegan, Vegetarian


Curry Ice Cream

2 pitted dates, soaked for 2 hours

½ cup coconut meat

½ cup raisins

1 Tbsp agave nectar

1 ½ tsp curry powder

Directions: Drain dates, reserving about 3 Tbsp of the soaked water. Transfer the dates and the reserved soaked water to a blender with all the remaining ingredients. Process on high speed until smooth and creamy, stopping occasionally to scrape down the blender jar. Pour into an ice cream maker until forms  a sturdy, creamy texture or follow manufactures instructions.

Serving Size: 1 quart

TCM Pattern: SP/ST xu; Yin xu

TCM Evaluation:  Dates are sweet, strengthens SP and nourishes body; coconut meat is sweet, warm, nourishing and strengthens body; raisins are sweet, sour strengthens bones and tendons; agave nectar is sweet, neutral, nourishes and harmonizes MJ; curry powder is pungent, warm and disperses cold, rectifies qi.


Honeyed Spinach

Categories: Large Intestine Fluid Vacuity, Lung Yin Vacuity

Honeyed Spinach
4 servings
(From The Chinese Herbal Cookbook)

12 oz fresh baby spinach
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 t soy sauce
4 t honey
2 oz pine nuts
1 T black sesame seeds
2 T sesame oil
4 oz raisins
Salt/pepper to taste

1. Wash the spinach well. Cut into shreds. Set aside.
2. Mix the garlic, soy cause, and honey in a small bowl. Set aside.
3. Heat a wok or frying pan and dry-fry the pine nuts and sesame seeds for 2 minutes being careful not to burn them. Remove to a plate and set aside.
4. Heat the sesame oil in the wok or frying pan and stir-fry the spinach for 1-2 minutes until softened.
5. Add the sauce and raisins to the spinach. Mix well.
6. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
7. Serve sprinkled with the pine nuts and sesame seeds.

TCM Analysis:
Spinach: sweet, cold; ST, LI. Clear heat, stop bleeding, nourish blood, moisten dryness.
Garlic: hot, acrid; Relieve food stagnation, move blood, dispel cold.
Soy sauce: salty, cold; SP, ST, KD. Harmonize MJ, clear heat.
Honey: sweet, neutral; SP, LU, LI. Harmonize MJ, moisten dryness, nourish yin.
Pine nuts: sweet, slightly warm; LU, LI. Moisten/tonify LU/LI.
Black sesame seeds: sweet, neutral. LV, KD, LU, LI. Nourish LV/KD, moisten.
Raisins: sweet. Nourish and moisten.

Overall, this recipe focuses on nourishing yin, clearing heat, and moistening dryness especially in cases of LU yin deficiency or autumn dryness. The garlic is kept in to lightly disperse and prevent over-nourishing.

Baked Oatmeal

Categories: Spleen Damp, Spleen Damp Cold, Spleen Qi Vacuity, Stomach Cold

Baked Oatmeal
In the early Fall when the weather first starts to get cooler, pop this recipe into the oven as soon as you wake up and get ready while it is cooking. You will be rewarded with a wonderful, nourishing dish before a busy day!

• 2 cups uncooked quick-cooking oats
• 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
• 1/3 cup raisins
• 1 tablespoon chopped walnuts
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• 1 1/2 cups fat-free milk
• 1/2 cup applesauce
• 2 tablespoons butter, melted
• 1 large egg, beaten
• Cooking spray
Preheat oven to 375°.
Combine the first 5 ingredients in a medium bowl. Combine the milk, applesauce, butter, and egg. Add milk mixture to oat mixture; stir well. Pour oat mixture into an 8-inch square baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375° for 20 minutes. Serve warm. Serves 4.
Cooking Light, OCTOBER 2003

Oats: sweet, warm, Supplements xu
Brown Sugar: sweet, warm, Supplements MJ, Descends ST qi
Raisins: warm, sweet, Supplements Blood & Qi
Walnuts: sweet, warm, Tonifies KD, LU, Lubricates LI
Milk: sweet, neutral, Supplements Qi, Nourishes Blood
Applesauce: sweet, sour, cool, Supplements LU, SP, ST
Butter: neutral, sweet, Supplements Blood & Qi
Egg: sweet, neutral, Nourishes Yin and Blood, Supplements SP & ST

This recipe strongly tonifies and warms the Spleen and Stomach. Almost every ingredient benefits and nourishes the MJ.

Mid-East Pilaf

Categories: Liver Qi Stagnation, Spleen Qi Vacuity

Mid-East Pilaf
3 c Hot cooked rice
1 tb Vegetable oil
1 md Onion; chopped
1 c Chopped dried apricots
1 tb Brown sugar
2/3 c Cashew bits or halves
1/3 c Raisins
1/4 ts Salt
1/4 ts Ground cinnamon
1/4 ts Cracked black pepper
1/8 ts Cardamom
1/8 ts Ground cloves
1/3 c Apple juice

1. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.
2. Sauté onion with brown sugar 3 to 5 minutes or until onion is golden brown.
3. Add cashews and raisins; sauté 2 to 3 minutes until nuts begin to brown and raisins plump.
4. Add rice, apricots, salt, cinnamon, pepper, cardamom and cloves.
5. Stir in apple juice. Heat thoroughly and serve.
Makes 6 servings
TCM Analysis:
Rice- sweet, neutral, supplements SP/ST, generates/preserves body fluids
Vegetable oil- neutral, sweet, sour, astringent; LV/LU, clears heat, detoxifies, generates fluids
Onion- acrid, neutral, LU/ST, clears heat relieves toxicity, transforms phlegm/damp
Apricot- neutral, sweet, sour, moistens LU, increases yin fluids
Brown sugar- sweet, warm, SP/ST/LV, supplements MJ, expels cold, inv. blood, moves LV qi
Cashew- sweet, neutral
Raisins- sweet, sour, neutral, LV/KD/UB
Salt- salty, cool, softening, KD
Cinnamon- warm, acrid, sweet, SP/ST/UB, dispels cold, promotes circulation
Black Pepper- acrid, warm, ST/LI, warms middle, expels damp/cold
Cardamom- acrid, aromatic, SP/ST/LV, digestive problems
Clove- acrid, warm, ST/KD, warms MJ, dispels cold
Apple Juice- sweet, sour, reduces heat, produces fluids for the body, moistens dryness, cool LU, cleansing and beneficial for LV/GB
Overall Pattern: The acrid ingredients help move the LV qi, and the sweet ingredients help nourish SP/ST.

Morning Couscous With Oranges and Dates

Categories: Shen Calming, Spleen Qi Vacuity

Morning Couscous With Oranges and Dates
Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times
Published: December 7, 2009

This is a delicious way to enjoy couscous. You can reconstitute the couscous the night before and keep it in the refrigerator overnight. All it will need in the morning is a steam in the microwave and the addition of the oranges.

1 1/2 cups water

2 to 3 tablespoons brown sugar or honey (to taste)

1 teaspoon orange flower water (optional; available at Middle Eastern markets)

3 tablespoons chopped dried apricots

2 tablespoons currants or raisins

1 tablespoon unsalted butter (optional)

1 cup couscous

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, to taste

1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)

2 navel oranges

6 dates, pitted and cut in quarters lengthwise

Pomegranate seeds for garnish

1. Combine the water and brown sugar or honey in a saucepan, and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to medium, and boil gently until the sugar has dissolved. Stir in the optional orange flower water, the chopped apricots and the raisins or currants, and set aside for five minutes.

2. Place the couscous in a 2-quart bowl, and add the cinnamon and salt. Stir together. Pour on the hot syrup. Mix together with a fork, spatula or wooden spoon, and set aside for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. At this point, if not eating right away, cover and refrigerate.

3. Shortly before serving, steam the couscous in one of two ways.

Line a strainer with a double layer of cheesecloth, and dump the couscous into the strainer. Then set above a pot with 1 inch of boiling water. Cover and steam for 15 minutes, making sure that the water is well below the couscous. Transfer to a bowl, add the butter, and toss together until the butter melts.

Alternatively, place the couscous in a microwave and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Microwave for two minutes. Carefully uncover, stir in the butter and cover again. Microwave for another two minutes. Remove the plastic, being careful of the steam in the bowl.

4. With a paring knife, peel away the skin and pith from the orange, holding it over the couscous so that any juice drips onto the couscous. Still holding the orange over the couscous, cut out the sections from between the membranes.

5. Pile the couscous into a mound on a platter, or spoon into individual serving bowls. Decorate with orange sections, date slices and pomegranate seeds, and serve.

Yield: Serves four to six.

Advance preparation: You can make the dish through step 3, and keep the couscous in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Orange apricot crisp

Categories: Desserts, Liver Yin Vacuity, Vegan, Vegetarian, Yin Vacuity

Anna Strong



8 oranges
1 tbsp grated orange zest
2 cups dried apricots, thinly sliced
½ cup dried raisins
½ cup chopped candied ginger
1 cup brown rice flour
½ cup sugar
1 tsp salt
6 tbsp vegan margarine
½ tsp vanilla extract

Pre heat oven to 350. Coat 9 inch square baking pan with cooking spray.
Cut ends off oranges. Stand 1 orange on cutting board and slice away pitch and peel. Cut orange into quarters, cut quarters into ½ inch slices. Repeat with remaining oranges and transfer to bowl. Stir apricots, raisins, and candies ginger into oranges. Spread mixture into baking pan.
Stir together brown rice flour, sugar, orange zest, and salt in bowl. Rub margarine and vanilla into rice flour mixture until mixture forms large crumbs. Spread crumbs over orange mixture.
Bake 30-40 minutes until top is golden brown.

LV Yin Xu Recipe

Oranges: sweet, sour, cool. Clears heat, soothes liver, nourishes fluids.
Orange zest: moves liver qi
Apricots: sl. Cool, sweet, sour. Regenerates body fluids, clears heat, quenches thirst
Raisins: sweet, warm, sour. Nourishes blood, relieves irritability
Ginger, acrid, warms (+ sweet): LU/SP/ST. disperses cold, redirects counterflow qi.
Brown rice flour: sweet, sl. Warm. SP/ST. Supplements qi, drains damp.
Sugar: sweet, warm. Sp/ST. Supplements and harmonizes Middle jiao.
Salt: salty, cold Clears heat, cools the blood.
Vegan margarine: Tonifies yin