Two Delicious Spring Meals for Balancing Kapha
Everyone in my home is thrilled that spring has sprung—this includes three kids, two dogs, and me. Now how do we keep ourselves in alignment with the heavy kapha elements of water and earth during the wet, earthy season of spring?
Simple. We nourish ourselves with what is at the farmer’s market. Nature knows what to provide to bring us balance.
All of us are active and the kids are still growing, so we need to have meals that are substantial and yet offer the balancing tastes of the season. For spring, that means we highlight the pungent, astringent, and bitter tastes.
Try selling that menu to a teenager! I have found a few recipes that appeal to all who gather around my table, teenagers included. Here are two winning spring-meal recipes that are a hit at my kitchen table.
2 Delicious & Balancing Spring Meals
Quinoa Egg Bake
Breakfast is a big deal at our house, and we love this dish so much that we often have it for our supper too. The spinach (sometimes other spring greens) plus the thyme keep the elements in balance while serving up the other six tastes (an important component to balanced eating in Ayurveda) for proper nourishment of all the tissues (dhatus) in the body.
Try adding other tastes to match what doshas you want to keep in balance. For example, my youngest adds chipotle sauce as he gets cold easily and often needs a bit more heat, while I tend to add tarragon for more astringency and to keep my predominant pitta dosha cool and dry.
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 dozen organic eggs
- 3 cups organic milk
- 4 cups fresh spinach, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon mineral salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup quinoa
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Oil a baking dish and set aside.
Sauté the onion and garlic in olive oil until the onion begins to caramelize.
Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs, milk, thyme, salt, and pepper; wash the quinoa well and drain. Add the quinoa to the egg mixture. Add cheese.
When onions are ready, lay spinach in the oiled dish, followed by the onions and then the egg mixture. Cover and bake for 35 to 40 minutes.
As the eggs bake, most of the quinoa will make its way to the bottom of the pan and form a crust—like magic!
Tridoshic seasonal veggies, along with a lighter grain like quinoa, makes for an amazing seasonal meal. This is a warming and delicious family favorite.
Quinoa seeds, with their nutty, grain-like texture, are a delicious and healthy alternative to pasta. A wonderful food for all the doshas, quinoa is especially healthy for balancing kapha and vata.
- 1 tablespoon sunflower oil
- 1 teaspoon kapha spice blend*
- 1 cup each of the following vegetables, cut into 1-inch cubes: butternut squash, zucchini, eggplant, asparagus, and red bell pepper
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1 ½ cups cold water
- Mineral salt, to taste
*Kapha Spice Blend:
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ⅛ teaspoon brown mustard seeds
- ¼ teaspoon ginger powder
- ¼ teaspoon coriander powder
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
*Use the suggested amounts of spices above, or adjust to taste. If it’s still in the cool and damp part of spring, I will roast garlic until sweet and add that to my spice mix.
For the quinoa: Soak the quinoa for 15-20 minutes in cool water. Wash and rinse, using a sieve near the end so as not to lose any of the quinoa seeds, and transfer to a pot.
Add the 1 ½ cups of cold water to the clean quinoa along with a little salt to taste. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to simmer, and simmer with a tight-fitting lid for 20 minutes. Remove from heat. Allow to cool 5 minutes before removing the lid and fluffing with a fork. (Note: This will result in fluffy quinoa; if you want softer, moister quinoa, add more water.)
In a separate saucepan, heat the sunflower oil and add the kapha spice blend. Stir quickly to cook the spice mixture and immediately add the firmer vegetables (like butternut squash). Sauté until the firmer vegetables begin to soften, then add the softer vegetables (like zuccini and eggplant) and cook until they are tender. Add salt to taste. Remove from heat. Serve the aromatic vegetables over the quinoa while hot and fresh.