Baked Sweet Potato With Winter Slaw and Hummous

baked sweet potatoe with winter slaw

Winter is vata season and according to Ayurveda the space and air elements combine to create winter energy.I love how nature always provides an antidote to help pacify possible seasonal imbalances. At this time of year, when the earth element is lacking, root vegetables, which grow into the ground, help to bring us down to earth.

This quick, seasonal meal harnesses the benefits of winter’s offerings and combines the sweet root vegetables with a good range of essential fats including omega-3, which we require and metabolise well during the colder months.

Baked Sweet Potato With Winter Slaw And Hummous

Serves 4

  • 4 medium sweet potatoes
  • diced avocado
  • 400g cooked chick peas
  • 2 tbsp tahini paste
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • himalayan salt
  • pepper
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tbsp flaxseed oil
  • 1/4 green cabbage
  • 2 baby beetroots
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1/2 bunch chopped coriander
  • apple cider vinegar
  • olive oil

Slice sweet potatoes lengthways and place in a heavy baking tray and roast for 40-60mins, or until very soft.

Meanwhile, place chick peas, tahini paste, lemon juice, garlic, 2 tablespoons flaxseed oil into food processor. Add salt and pepper to taste and blend until paste is smooth.

To make slaw salad shred cabbage, beetroot and carrot. Chop coriander and toss through salad with olive oil and apple cider vinegar.

Once the sweet potato is cooked pile with salad, diced avocado and a big dollop of hummous. Serve immediately.

Warm Quinoa And Roast Vegetable Salad For Autumn

Warm Quinoa and roast veg saald

As we move out of the warmer months and the air begins to feel cool and dry it is the perfect time to prepare for the winter. In Ayurveda autumn and early winter are equated with the Vata dosha which is primarily associated with the nervous system. Vata also regulates the levels of moisture in the body, how relaxed we feel and how well we digest food. Our diet and lifestyle needs to be warming, calming and nourishing during this time.

Try adding more cooked, warm, lightly spiced foods to the diet and include seasonal root vegetables like beets, carrots, sweet potato and pumpkins.

Keeping the nervous system stable through autumn is our number one tool for maintaining strong immunity and staying healthy during winter. Take time to slow down,  meditate, eat at regular times and get to bed earlier. A regular lifestyle routine helps to ground Vata.

Warm Quinoa And Roast Vegetable Salad

  • mushrooms
  • eggplant
  • beetroot
  • sweet potato
  • kale
  • cooked brown lentils
  • cooked quinoa
  • coconut oil
  • olive oil
  • pinch of sea salt
  • pepper

Preheat oven to 180° and grease a roasting tray with coconut oil.

Dice all vegetables (except kale) and turn into roasting tray. Bake until tender.

Remove stems from kale and steam lightly. Once tender remove from heat and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper.

Assemble by tossing kale, roast vegetables, lentils and quinoa together, dress with extra olive oil and season to taste. Serve warm.

Grounding Pumpkin And Beetroot Soup

beetroot and pumpkin soupWhen I am juggling too many projects and multi-tasking beyond true capacity I can’t help but feel out of balance. I find that being too busy creates too much mental (and sometimes physical) movement and creates what is known in Ayurvedic medicine as ‘Vata’ symptoms. I feel unsettled and restless and tend to become more prone to anxiety and often insomnia. This is when I know it is time for some serious grounding.

Stillness, tranquility and becoming more present are just the antidote to Vata imbalances and constructive lifestyle routines are important to restoring and maintaining
balance. Walking in nature, meditating, taking a warm bath, massage/self massage, yoga and eating warm, grounding foods are some of my favourite tools in times of need.

It is important to eat properly cooked, warm foods to balance Vata and here I share a recent recipe for a warming soup that uses grounding root vegetables and spices as it’s base.

Pumpkin And Beetroot Soup

  • Beetroot
  • Pumpkin
  • Kale
  • Chickpeas
  • Turmeric
  • Ginger
  • Vegetable stock

Allow the soup to cook until all vegetables are soft and the flavours have sufficent time to infuse, then puree until smooth, making it easy to digest.

Sit still in a quiet place whilst eating slowly and mindfully, and use the eating experience itself to ground you and bring you into the present moment.

Enjoy the benefits!