Category Archives: Spring Recipes

Recipes for Spring and early Summer!

miso 2

Morning Miso, My Favorite Mindful Breakfast

Soup for breakfast? It is one of my favorites. Every since going to Kripalu and seeing two kinds of soup served for breakfast every morning: Miso and whatever leftover vegetables they had for a vegetable soup, I realized this is the best way for me to start my day. I feel light, refreshed, and nourished. I sometimes eat it with a side of whole grain toast with vegan butter on it if I need a little more oomph or I put noodles in my soup.

Food is meant to be soothing to your gut. This soup soothes me, and clears my mind. Food is medicine, and miso is said to be great for our health and gut. Think of your gut as your little brain of the body, and that might help you to make better food decisions.

Here are some benefits of miso, taken from The Magic of Miso, by Hiro Watanabe Ph.d

MISO BENEFITS

Many studies have been done on miso, some on humans and some on animals. These studies are showing the following benefits of miso2:

  • Reduces risks of cancer including breast cancer, prostate cancer, lung cancer and colon cancer.
  • Protection from radiation
  • Immune strengthening
  • Antiviral — miso is very alkalizing and strengthening to the immune system helping to combat a viral infection.
  • Prevents aging – high in antioxidants, miso protects from free radicals that cause signs of aging.
  • Helps maintain nutritional balance – full of nutrients, beneficial bacteria and enzymes, miso provides: protein, vitamin B12, vitamin B2, vitamin E, vitamin K, tryptophan, choline, dietary fiber, linoleic acid and lecithin.
  • Helps preserve beautiful skin – miso contains linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid that helps your skin stay soft and free of pigments.
  • Helps reduce menopausal complaints – the isoflavones in miso have been shown to reduce hot flashes.

RECIPE

This soup takes me less than 10 mins to make, and you can use leftover tofu, rice, cooked veggies to add to the base, but here is the essentials:

6 cups of purified water

2 carrots sliced into coins

1-2 stalks of celery sliced

a large pinch of wakame seaweed (packed with micro-nutrients & iodine and makes the soup taste great!)

2-3 generous tablespoons of yellow miso

Put the veggies and seaweed into a medium sized pot. Add the water slowly. Cook on low for about an hour, this is great for yoga time. Take the simmering soup off the heat, let it rest for a few minutes and add your miso in with a strainer of some kind, just swirling it through the water until dissolved. Do not add your miso to boiling soup, it kills the good stuff in it. Read up on the different types of miso, organic is really important when choosing too.

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At this point you can eat it like it is, or add in a shake of shoyu, edamame and soba noodles. This morning I happened to have leftover noodles and edamame and it was delicious to just add it in and let the hot soup warm it up. I also have used diakon, cabbage, broccolini in with the veggie mix above. Or leftover cooked short grain brown rice and a 1/2 cup of tofu cut in cubes.  Watercress and kale make nice additions in the winter and early spring. Play around with what you like. Did I mention my kids love this soup? My toddlers will eat 2-3 bowls of it sometimes in one sitting, even at breakfast.

I eat this soup usually for breakfast and lunch when I make it, since it makes just about enough for 3-4 servings and I prefer to eat it fresh. I will alternate soup 2-3 times a week, miso or diakon, and sometimes just toast or oatmeal. I love eggs, but I found that they are a bit too heavy for me in the morning, I prefer eggs at lunch if I am going to eat them. I found this all out by really listening to my body and what it needs to eat.

A few easy things to do for the mental piece of mindful eating:

  • chew slowly and savor your food
  • put the fork down and notice if you are full
  • wait to go for seconds
  • notice how you feel after a meal, are you too full? tired? bloated? gassy?
  • if you notice you are anything other than light, content, revitalized then you might want to consider making some changes

A great place to start is my favorite cookbook, The Self-Healing Cookbook by Kristina Turner. She really helps you understand the moods of food in a easy way. Alicia Silverstone’s The Kind Diet also takes this into perspective.

Friendship Cake

Vegan Cherry Almond Cake Recipe

In times of transition and need, we find our friends to be what holds us together. I picked up a new set of oracle cards by Lucy Cavendish called Magical Spell Cards, and the card I pulled in a time of great need was the Friendship Spell card. The card itself spoke truth on so many levels in such a simple way that I had to follow through with the suggested “spell” of action, which was to bake a cherry cake for my dearest friends, savor all of my friends’ qualities and nurture them with this action of baking for them. So thank you, friends…I may be making this cake again very soon!

Vegan Cherry Almond Cake

Ingredients

1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
3/4 cup sugar
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup almond meal
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup oat milk (or almond)
1/3 cup Earth Balance butter
1.5 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 1/2 cups pitted sweet cherries, frozen with juice from thawing

Add all dry ingredients together. Add dry ingredients to all the remaining ingredients except the cherries. Fold in cherries and juice gently, the mixture will be lumpy. Bake in a pre-heated 375 degree oven for about 45 minutes until cake testing knife or fork comes out clean. Sprinkle with powder sugar before serving. I used a 8” round cake pan for this. Eat with friends, drink with some tea or wine for added bliss.

Nourishing & Healing Daikon Radish Soup

Nourishing & Healing Daikon Radish Soup

All winter long after the holidays, I made this soup 2 times a week to help keep my body running well, cleansed and purified.

It also plays a major role in my steady weight loss since having two children over the last 3 years. I lost 20lbs from January to March this year, just from switching half of my diet to a mostly macrobiotic vegan based diet.

I love this soup for breakfast, mostly, as it shapes how I eat all day, and I can eat it for snacks or lunches too. I usually make it with a pot of short grain organic brown rice and a side of steamed greens to make it a full meal if I feel the need for more nourishment, or you can add it right to your soup bowl with a dash of shoyu.

Eat it when you feel tired, bloated or ate poorly the day before – you will feel noticeably better. Eat when you are hungry. Start to get to know when you know you are hungry and you will see great change in your body and diet.

You can work with a variety of seasonal vegetables from the list below, but the daikon is one of the most important ingredients for purifying the blood, and I feel it makes the soup taste great! Use organic produce as much as possible, as clean food is medicine to the body.

Make this soup for someone who is sick or someone you love. It will change your life!

Nourishing & Healing Daikon Radish Soup

Into a large soup or stock pot add, nicely chopped or diced:

2-3 carrots
2-3 celery stalks
1 small onion
3” daikon radish sliced and then diced
Cabbage (1 cup chopped into small pieces)
½ bunch of chopped greens of your choice, or a mix (kale, chard, collard, work nice). I like to add these later so they stay fresh, about 10 minutes before I think the soup is done.
Fresh herbs to taste, my favorite is parsley, I usually use ½ cup

Slowly pour in as much water as you like, I usually use around 2 quarts or so. Simmer until vegetables are soft enough to your liking.

Eat with a splash of shoyu (not too much) as it is high in sodium, or eat plain. Ladle soup into mason jars in your fridge for quick meal or freeze a batch and set it out to thaw to make sure you stick with having it for a meal during the day.

I like to wake up very early, and chop vegetables in the quietness of the morning – it is meditative and fills my soup with that same nourishing quality. I know when I make this soup I am taking good care of myself and the others who will eat it.

You can play with adding other things like:

Green beans
Peas
Fresh broccoli
Cauliflower
Sweet potato (1/2 is usually enough of a medium sized potato)
Squash of any kind, summer, zuchinni, and butternut are my favorite
Black Radish

Stay away from nightshades, like eggplant, tomatoes, and peppers for this soup.

Recommended cookbooks for a better you!

We carry all three in my little bookstore at the studio:

Alicia Silverstone’s The Kind Diet
The Self Healing Cookbook by Kristina Turner
Eat Yourself Super by Dr. Todd Pesek

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