October Recipes

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) autumn is the season of the lungs & metal element, represented by the colour white and associated with the emotion of grief & sadness when out of balance and clear thinking, openness to new ideas and good communication when in balance. This is an important transition time into the darker, colder, yin half of the year. We need warming, grounding foods & can re-introduce baking & roasting.
— HEALING NOTES FOR AUTUMN

We hydrate and nourish our lungs with:

  • Healthy oils & fats (coconut, olive, sesame, ghee, avocado, nuts & seeds, plain yoghurt)
  • Sweet vegetables (pumpkins, apples, squash)
  • Slowly cooked stews, bone or mushroom broths, porridges & oatmeals
  • When eaten in excess (or as poor quality, conventionally-produced dairy and refined sugars), we create congestion

The pungent taste, stimulating foods such as the following circulate Lung Qi and break up phlegm:

  • Daikon & turnips
  • Rosemary, radishes, onions
  • Cinnamon, garlic, ginger, black pepper

Apple Sauce Oatmeal

Approx. 2 servings | Prep time 5 mins | Cook time 15 minutes

Ingredients

Oatmeal

¾ cup of organic rolled oats (large flaked)

1½ cups water – depending on how creamy you like your oats

1 cup (unsweetened) apple sauce (make your own as below or go for a brand like Biona with no nasties)

2 tbsp high quality organic maple syrup

½ cup milk of choice *oat milk (see elixirs section to make your own), almond milk, organic raw dairy milk

Pinch of cinnamon

Pinch of salt

Tsp organic coconut oil

 

Caramelised Apples (or apricots) (optional topping)

1 apple, diced

1 tbsp maple syrup or coconut sugar

Pinch of cinnamon

Splash of water

Homemade applesauce*

4 organic apples (or apricots) – peeled, cored and chopped

¾ cup water

¼ cup coconut sugar (or try without if preferred)

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon.

Make it


Place apple chunks, maple syrup, cinnamon and a splash of water into a small saucepan.

Let simmer until apples are soft (gradually add a bit more water if needed), then remove apples from heat and set aside.

Put oats (soaked overnight), water, apple sauce, maple syrup, cinnamon & salt into the same saucepan. Start by adding 1 ½ cups of water and work your way up, depending on how thin you like your oatmeal.

Let simmer on low heat for about 5-7 minutes until oats have absorbed most of the liquid. Then add milk of choice and let simmer for another 2 minutes.

Let cool for 5 minutes (oats will thicken even more). Taste and adjust sweetness.

Throw in caramelized apples. Add a drizzle of maple syrup/ applesauce/nuts/and coconut oil on top and enjoy!

*If making the fresh applesauce;

Combine apples, water, coconut sugar, and cinnamon in a saucepan; cover and cook over medium heat until apples are soft, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Allow apple mixture to cool, then mash with a fork or potato masher until the consistency you like.

Amp up the quantities & make up a big pan of applesauce with the local apples in season right now and freeze in small batches so you have some ready for your baking and breakfasts.

Healing Notes

  • Both the oatmeal & the apples are going to help nourish the lungs as we shift into the metal element any stagnant qi in the lungs will show up as intense grief & sadness
  • We want to be starting the day with warming foods & drinks in autumn – try a warm ginger tea before any cold water to help stimulate the digestive fire (agni) first thing
  • Soaking oats overnight will negate any bloating and make it easier for the body to process the goodness

Cauliflower and Mushroom Soup

Serves 2 | Prep time 20 min | Cook time 35 mins

Ingredients

1 lb assorted chopped mushrooms, such as shiitake, crimini, chanterelle, or oyster

4 large parsnips, quartered

1 large cauliflower, quartered (save the leaves for stir frys/salads)

4 cups stock (as per this months recipe)

2 cups coconut milk

1 large shallot, diced

3 tbsp coconut oil

1 tbsp fresh tarragon, minced plus extra for garnish

1 tsp smoked paprika

1/4 tsp nutmeg

Sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Make it

Preheat the oven to 200°c.

First roast the parsnips & cauliflower. Lay the veggies on a parchment lined baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.

Roast for about 25 minutes or until they are soft and can be easily pierced with a knife. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Heat the fat in a large soup pot over medium-low heat.

Add the shallot and tarragon and sauté for about 3 minutes until the shallot is transparent.

Slice the mushrooms thinly and add them to the stock pot. Season with salt and pepper and sauté for another 3 minutes until the mushrooms begin to wilt. Season with paprika and nutmeg.

Simmer until almost all the liquid is absorbed.

Add the stock and the roasted parsnips/cauliflower and allow the mixture to come to a simmer – about 5 minutes.

Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

Purée the soup in a blender. Once the mixture is puréed, return it to the soup pot over low heat. Allow it to re-warm, then add the coconut milk and mix thoroughly.

Serve garnished with fresh mint, a sprinkle of smoked paprika, extra mushrooms or pickles of choice and a drizzle of olive oil.

Healing Notes

  • The cauliflower & mushroom are perfect for nourishing the lungs this autumn. If you’re feeling like you need some grounding you can switch out the mushrooms for butternut squash or pumpkin for an more earthy, root veggie vibe.

Medicinal Mushroom Broth

Bone broth is traditionally used to support the immune system during times of illness and recovery. Medicinal mushrooms, such as reishi, shiitake, and Chaga, can also act as powerful allies.

They help support your body during times of stress or when your immune system needs a little extra assistance & are perfect for this shift in season.

You can choose to add the chicken bones or keep them out.

Ingredients

2 pounds chicken bones (optional)

1 medium onion (halved)

3 bulbs garlic (peeled & crushed)

3 medium celery ribs, chopped

1 tbs organic coconut oil

8 slices dried reishi mushrooms

10 dried shiitake mushrooms

¼ cup dried chaga mushrooms

3 slices astragalus root

3 tablespoons dulse flakes or seaweed of choice

1 cup white wine (optional)

4 pints filtered water

10 medium sage leaves

Make it

Heat the oven to 180C, and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

Arrange the chicken bones, onion, garlic, celery, medicinal mushrooms, and astragalus on the baking sheet. Sprinkle them with dulse flakes, and then drizzle the olive oil over them. Slow-roast the ingredients together until fragrant, about 45 minutes.

Transfer the contents of the baking sheet to a stock pot, and then pour in the wine if using and water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, and then immediately turn down the temperature to medium low and simmer, uncovered, at least 6 and up to 8 hours. Stir in the sage leaves about 20 minutes before turning off the heat.

Turn off the heat, strain the broth and discard the solids. Serve immediately, or store in the fridge up to 5 days and in the freezer up to 3 months. Adjust seasoning with fine sea salt before serving.

Healing Notes

  • Most medicinal mushrooms have adaptogenic and immunomodulant properties. As adaptogens, they help your body adapt to a wide variety of stressors. And as immune tonics, they support a balanced immune system response in a gentle way
  • Reishi mushroom supports your body’s ability to handle stress and provides immune system support, too. They may also help calm the nerves while supporting healthy sleep cycles
  • Shiitake mushrooms have a rich earthy flavor and are also high in various antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds. They also have antiviral properties

Make a big batch of this medicine and put it in everything!

Maryam’s Persian Rice

Serves 4 | Prep time 15 mins | Cook time 40 minutes

One of my gorgeous neighbours made this for me full of loveeeeeee & i’ve given it an autumnal enhancement.

Ingredients

1/2 bunch fresh coriander

1 – 1.5 cups broth – * see mushroom broth recipe

2 tsp avocado oil

1 onion

2 cloves garlic

1 tsp Ají amarillo paste (you can buy a jar of this or there’s a recipe here)

1 cup jasmine rice

1 carrot

1 pumpkin or squash of choice, peeled, cut & roasted

Sea salt and pepper

Make it

Prepare the squash and roast in the oven with a drizzle of olive oil and seasoning for 40 mins.

Meanwhile, chop onion and garlic and peel and dice carrot.

Add coriander and broth to your blender and blend until the cilantro is completely liquified.

Pop a small saucepan over medium heat and once hot add a drizzle of oil/coconut oil, then fry chopped onion and garlic in it until translucent. Add ají and stir-fry for a few more seconds.

Add rice, coriander water, and carrots to the onions and stir to combine.

Bring to a boil and as soon as slightly bubbly, reduce heat to low and immediately cover for 15 minutes

Add the roasted squash and use a spoon or fork to mix in and fluff the rice. Then serve.

Healing Notes

  • The heat from the Ají amarillo will stimulate the lungs
  • The root veggies are immune boosting & grounding
  • Soaking the rice overnight will help your body process the grains and the goodness efficiently

Whole Roasted Cauliflower and Tahini

Ingredients

1 medium head of cauliflower

2 tbsp of olive oil, plus more for drizzling

1 tsp turmeric

1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp sea salt

For the tahini sauce:

1/3 cup tahini, stirred well

3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 clove garlic, grated (or minced)

2 tbsp olive oil

Pinch of kosher salt

1/4 cup ice cold water, plus more as needed

Optional garnish

¼ cup shelled pistachios, roughly chopped

1/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves

1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

More sea salt

Make it

Preheat the oven to 180ºC and line a small baking sheet with parchment paper. Top the parchment paper with a wire rack. Alternatively, place a few paper towels on top of the parchment paper. (This is to drain the cauliflower.)

Rinse the cauliflower well. Leaving the main core intact, slice the bottom of the core off the cauliflower so that it sits evenly on the baking sheet. If the cauliflower has a lot of leaves covering the top, trim them down so that most of the top and sides of the cauliflower are exposed. You don’t have to trim all the leaves off the cauliflower since once roasted, they are super delicious to eat.

Fill a large pot with 3 inches of water and bring the water to a boil. Carefully place the cauliflower in the pot, head-side up, cover and simmer over medium heat for 8 minutes.

Using a large slotted spoon gently lift cauliflower from water and place on prepared baking sheet, stem side down.

Let stand until cauliflower has cooled slightly and is dry to the touch, about 15 minutes. This can be done up two hours ahead.

Remove the rack and place the cauliflower back on the parchment-lined baking sheet. Drizzle the cauliflower with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and use your hands to coat it well.

Sprinkle all over with turmeric, salt and cumin seeds. Drizzle again with a little more olive oil (don’t rub this time) and transfer to the oven.

Roast in the oven until tender and golden brown, about 40 to 45 minutes. The exact time will depend on how hot your oven is and the size of your cauliflower so keep an eye on it. Remove it from the oven when it looks sufficiently golden-brown to you with a bit of char in some places.

While the cauliflower roasts, make the tahini sauce. In a medium bowl combine the tahini, lemon juice, garlic, olive oil and salt. Add the ice water and whisk until smooth and lighter in colour, adding a little more if it needs to be a little looser.

Once the cauliflower is roasted, let sit for 5 minutes then transfer to a serving platter.

Drizzle the top of the cauliflower with tahini sauce and garnish

Healing Notes

  • Both the cauliflower and the sesame in the tahini and going to nourish the lungs

Pumpkin Tart

Ingredients

For the crust

1.5 cup, pecans

80 grams oats, quick or regular

60 grams whole wheat pastry flour/ GF option

3–4 medjool dates

55 grams coconut oil, softened

1/4 teaspoon salt

Pumpkin Filling

1 cup pumpkin puree (as per recipe)

3/4 cup coconut cream

1/2 cup coconut sugar

1/4 cup real organic maple syrup

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 tsp vanilla essence

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp dried ginger

1/4 tsp allspice

1/8 tsp cloves

2 tbsp cornstarch

2 tbsp nondairy milk or water

2 tbsp coconut oil

Make it

Make the Crust

In food processor grind pecans until they become a coarse.

Add oats, flour, dates, coconut oil, and salt. Pulse until combined and beginning to adhere together.

Press crust into a well oiled 11″ tart pan with a removable bottom. Make sure you press well into the sides. Bake crust 15-20 minutes at 180oc.

Pumpkin puree

Cut in half, scoop out seeds and pulp.

Place flesh side down on a baking sheet

Roast in the oven

Scoop the flesh out from the peel

Place in a food processor until velvety smooth

Pumpkin filling

In a saucepan mix together pumpkin puree, coconut cream, sugar, maple syrup, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice, and cloves. Bring to a simmer stirring until completely blended and smooth. About 5 minutes

In a small bowl whisk together cornstarch and nondairy milk (or water). Add to the simmering pumpkin mixture. Stir for 2 minutes while simmering. It will get thick and caramely. Add the coconut oil and whisk until completely melted and fully incorporated.

Remove from heat and pour into the cooked crust. Let set up in the fridge for at least 2 hours and up to 1 day.

Serve with your favorite topping

Healing notes:

  • Pumpkin is particularly high in Vitamin A which can help to strengthen your immune system. It is also a good source of vitamins C and E. Pumpkin also contains antioxidants that can help neutralise free radicals that can lead to oxidative stress.
  • All root-y veggies are great for grounding at this time of year as we shift into Vata season in Ayurveda and may get a little ‘in our heads’ as Vata is the air element of the three Ayurvedic dosha’s

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