It’s “Mint” To Be

After practicing yoga for almost 17 years, I just made the decision to enroll in the Yoga Teacher Training program at CorePower Yoga, starting this summer. It seems like all planets are finally aligning.

Photo Credit: All About Space magazine

At the start of the RnR Seattle Half Marathon #run #yoga #roga

To celebrate, I am sharing my favorite smoothie recipe. I am calling it “It’s Mint To Be”. This is my go-to recovery drink after an intensive hot yoga class or long distance run.

It’s simple, cool, refreshing, delicious and nutritious. I promise you won’t taste the spinach at all!

It's Mint To Be
Serves 1
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup of almond milk *
  2. 2 handfuls of baby spinach
  3. 2 dates
  4. 1 large ripe banana, cut into chunks and frozen overnight
  5. 1 cup of ice cubes
  6. 1/4 teaspoon of peppermint extract**
  7. 1 teaspoon of Om, Organic Mushroom Nutrition Fit (optional) ***
  8. 1 tablespoon raw cacao nibs ( I like the brand Navitas)
Instructions
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a high-speed blender, except the cacao nibs. Blend until smooth. Add the chocolate nibs and blend for 10 seconds to break them down.
  2. Pour into one large glass and garnish with mint leaves and chocolate nibs.
  3. Serve immediately.
Options
  1. * For a nut-free version, use hemp milk and vanilla extract.
  2. ** You could use 1 drop of Young Living EO instead of the peppermint extract.
  3. *** OM: https://ommushrooms.com/mi/superfood-blends/fit.html
Sunshine & Kale http://sunshineandkale.com/
Hope you enjoy it as much as I do! 

Love and Light!
~ Ciry at SunshineandKale

{Ayurvedic} Cumin, Coriander & Fennel Tea

Several year ago, I discovered two Ayurvedic remedies while traveling in India: CCF Tea and Golden Turmeric Milk. I recently shared my recipe for the delicious turmeric drink and its benefits. You can read more about it here.

Delicious Golden Milk #ayurvedic #almondmilk #turmeric #cinnamon #cardamom #ginger #nutmeg #vegan #vegana #vegano #vegansofig #goldenmilk #plantbased #plantstrong #plantpowered #solarplexus #antiinflammatory #digestive Follow me in FB too!

{Ayurvedic & Vegan} Golden Milk 

This week I want to share the Cumin, Coriander & Fennel Tea, aka CCF Tea. This is a very simple but effective remedy, great for your digestion, weight loss, mental clarity and detoxification.

Cumin Seeds

Cumin seeds are rich in iron and are thought to help stimulate the secretion of enzymes from the pancreas which can help absorb nutrients into the system. It has also been shown to boost the power of the liver’s ability to detoxify the human body.  You can read more here

Fun facts – Superstition during the Middle Ages cited that cumin kept chickens and lovers from wandering. It was also believed that a happy life awaited the bride and groom who carried cumin Seed throughout the wedding ceremony.*

Coriander Seeds

Coriander seeds have a health-supporting reputation that is high on the list of the healing spices. In parts of Europe, coriander has traditionally been referred to as an “anti-diabetic” plant. In parts of India, it has traditionally been used for its anti-inflammatory properties. In the United States, coriander has recently been studied for its cholesterol-lowering effects. The health benefits of coriander include treatment of swellings, high cholesterol levels, mouth ulcers, anemia, digestion, blood sugar disorders, etc. You can read more here

Fun Facts Coriander has been around since biblical times.  In the Bible, Exodus, XVI, 31 mentions coriander.  You can find medical and culinary uses for coriander in texts from India, Egypt. Ancient Rome and China dating back seven thousand years.  The ancient Egyptians believed coriander could be used in the afterlife as a food for the departed.

Fennel Seeds

Fennel seeds contain significant amounts of fiber, which helps lower the total amount of cholesterol in the blood, thereby decreasing the risk of heart disease. It’s also rich in calcium, phosphorus, vitamins A, B and C. 

Fun Facts – Ancient roman texts mention the value of this herb for its aromatic seeds and succulent edible stalks. The ruler Charlemagne (745-815 AD) promoted fennel’s use during the medieval time. He cultivated the herb on his imperial farms.  Romans introduced the herb to Britain during the Roman occupation. The Americas were introduced to the herb in the 1700’s.

The Greek name for fennel is marathon (μάραθον) or marathos (μάραθος), and the place of the famous battle of Marathon (whence Marathon, the subsequent sports event), literally means a plain with fennels [Wikipedia]

 
CCF Tea,jpg

 

Enjoy it!

{Ayurvedic} Cumin, Coriander & Fennel Tea
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Prep Time
5 min
Prep Time
5 min
Ingredients
  1. 1/2 tsp of fennel seeds
  2. 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds
  3. 1/2 tsp of coriander seeds
  4. 3 cups of water
Instructions
  1. Boil 3 cups of water.
  2. Add the cumin, coriander, and fennel seeds.
  3. Let it steep for 5 minutes.
  4. Strain and serve.
  5. Sip the drink throughout the day.
Notes
  1. It's important to take this tea hot or at lukewarm temperature.
Sunshine & Kale http://sunshineandkale.com/
* “Antioxidant Properties of Spices, Herbs and Other Sources” By Denys J. Charles

{Vegan} Delicious Golden Milk

In 2004, I was introduced to the world of Ayurveda (an ancient system of life [ayur] and knowledge [veda]). I had just moved from New York to San Diego and landed a job five minutes from The Chopra Center at Omni La Costa Resort in Carlsbad. I visited this center several times during my lunch breaks and started reading Deepak Chopra’s books. The morning I finished reading Deepak’s Synchrodestiny, I received a call, an invitation to a wedding in India. This was an offer I couldn’t resist!

La_Costa_ChopraCenter

I traveled to Delhi, Agra, Jaipur, Hyderabad and Visakhapatnam with four close friends. During our trip, we consumed large amounts of turmeric and dairy. This was my pre-vegan era. We were often asked, “What kind of tea do you want? “Chai Tea”, we would usually reply. I learned on my second day in India that the word “chai” means (plain) tea. Saying “I want chai tea” is like saying “I want tea tea”. No wonder everyone would smile at me. What we really wanted was “masala chai”.

Agra

In India, I discovered two Ayurvedic remedies: CCF Tea (made with coriander, cumin and fennel seeds) and Golden Turmeric Milk. Both drinks are incredibly powerful and good for the digestion (especially if prepared with nut milks).  In addition to this, turmeric has proven of value as an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, digestive aid, skin remedy, an adjunct treatment for cancer as well as a prevention for heart disease, diabetes, and certain auto-immune conditions (Source: http://www.blessedherbs.com/resources/turmeric-curcumin-herbal-remedy)

After the wedding in India, I continued following an Ayurvedic lifestyle for many years. I still do many of the morning rituals (aka dinacharya) like drinking a warm glass of water as soon as I wake, daily self-massages (aka daily abhyanga), tongue scraping, etc… I also drink CCF tea regularly.

However, It wasn’t until recently that I re-discovered Golden Milk. It seems like a popular recipe nowadays. Ayurveda is going mainstream! Now that I eat 100% plant-based, I decided to give it a try with homemade Brazil Nut Milk (2 cups of Brazil nuts, 4 cups of water, 1 vanilla bean and a pinch of salt). I also tried it with homemade almond milk. It tastes good both ways.  My recipe was adapted from Dr. Andrew Weil.

Masala Dabba

My masala dabba

{Vegan} Golden Milk
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Ingredients
  1. 2 cups of non-dairy milk (I used homemade Brazil Nut Milk but you can use almond, coconut or cashew milk)
  2. 2 Medjool dates
  3. 1 teaspoon of turmeric
  4. 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  5. 1 teaspoon of ground ginger
  6. ½ teaspoon of ground cardamom
  7. ½ teaspoon of ground nutmeg (optional)
  8. a pinch of black pepper (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place all the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth.
  2. Transfer to a small saucepan and heat gently for a couple of minutes.
  3. Pour into your favorite cup and enjoy it.
Sunshine & Kale http://sunshineandkale.com/
Some interesting facts about turmeric:

  • Turmeric, called Haridra in Sanskrit and Haldi in Hindi, goes by the botanical name Curcuma longa. The herb grows to a little more than 3 feet in height. It produces both a rhizome and a flower. The rhizome being the most used part of the plant and the source of both the yellow dye and the spice.
  • In both Hinduism and Buddhism, turmeric is linked to fertility, luck and the sun. Because of this, turmeric is traditionally used in wedding ceremonies and the roots of its plants are often a gift to pregnant women. In nuptial customs, turmeric may be applied to the bride’s skin as part of purification ritual before the ceremony. Turmeric’s use is forbidden in a house in mourning.
  • In southern India, the dried rhizome is often worn in an amulet as protection against evil and to bring about healing or good luck.
  • The robes of the Hindu monks were traditionally colored with a yellow dye made of turmeric. Because of its yellow-orange coloring, turmeric was associated with the sun or the Thirumal in the mythology of ancient Tamil religion. Yellow is the color of the solar plexus chakra which in traditional Tamil Siddha medicine is an energy center.
  • India is one of the largest producers of turmeric. On average India exports approximately 50 thousand tons of turmeric every year. Pakistan is the second largest producer of turmeric. There are around 30 varieties that have been recognized in the type of Curcuma in which turmeric belongs. ‘Alleppey Finger’, ‘Salem turmeric’, ‘Rajapore’, ‘Erode’ and ‘Sangli turmeric’, ‘Nizamabad Bulb’ are some of the popular varieties of India.
  • Turmeric is popularly used in the cosmetic industry for preparing herbal products and natural hair dye.
  • The Assyrians knew about turmeric too. This orange root was described in a book of herbal remedies from 600 BC. The Greek physician Dioscorides used it in the first century AD during his time as “army doc” for the Roman Empire.

For more information on turmeric, click Blessed Herbs,  Wiki and Ayurveda College. If you want to explore more about Ayurveda, check Maharishi Ayurveda. I have purchased many Ayurvedic products from this site. They are truly the best!