Tag Archives: ayurvedic

Ayurvedic Yogi Tea

At Soul Of Yoga, we always finish our Saturday kundalini yoga class with homemade yogi tea, courtesy of my beautiful friend and teacher Sarah Sang.  Today, I want to share her recipe which has been adapted from Yogi Bhajan’s recipe

Who is Yogi Bhajan?

He was an inspirational teacher of holistic living who came from India to the West in 1969. Yogi Bhajan shared with his students his wisdom and knowledge of healthy living and the beneficial properties of herbs while serving a comforting and aromatic Ayurvedic spiced tea they affectionately named “Yogi Tea”.

Eventually, this blossomed into the Yogi Tea Company in 1984 which now offers over 60 unique blends that aid to help with stamina, relaxation, circulation and endurance. You’ve probably seen these products in the major grocery stores. Their packages include instructions for short meditations and words of wisdom.

Benefits of Yogi Tea

This tea is a remedy and preventive measure for colds, flu and sinus problems. The black peppercorns are a blood purifier. The cardamon is for the digestive system, particularly for the colon. The cloves are for the nervous system. The cinnamon is for the bones. The ginger  adds flavor and aids in strengthening the nervous system while energizing the entire person. And finally the black tea which acts as a catalyst for the other ingredients.

Making Your Own Yogi Tea

While buying it already packaged is convenient, there is nothing like preparing a fresh batch of yogi tea from scratch. The species will leave a beautiful aroma in your kitchen. I can guarantee it! Hope you enjoy this recipe.


Ayurvedic Yogi Tea
Serves 6
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
  1. 6 cups of water
  2. 3 large cinnamon sticks
  3. 6 green Cardamom pods
  4. 6 cloves
  5. 20 black peppercorns
  6. 1 thumb length of ginger, thinly sliced
  7. 4 dried Jujube (optional)
  8. 1 pinch of black tea ( you can use 1 tea bag)
  1. non-dairy milk and sweeterner
  1. Bring water to boil and all all spices ( except for black tea)
  2. Turn down the heat, let it simmer for 20 mins.
  3. Add black tea and simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Strain it into a warmed teapot or directly into teacups.
  5. Add milk and sweetener of choice ( optional)
  1. Tip - Make the tea early in the morning and let it sit for at least another 40 minutes after turning off the heat. The tea turns sweeter with a stronger earthy aroma as all the ingredients continue to release their flavor and healing nutrients.
  2. Enjoy it throughout the day or store in the refrigerator in glass bottles. I always warm up my tea in a pot (not microwave)
Sunshine & Kale http://sunshineandkale.com/


Yogi Tea – Chai Tea – Masala Chai – A funny anecdote

While I was visiting Hyderabad a few years back, I was asked if I wanted tea. I replied “YES, please!”. Then I was asked “Well, what kind of tea?”.  “Chai, please”. The server smiled “Yes, tea. What kind of tea?”. It took me a few minutes to realize that the Indian word for tea is simply “chai”. Saying “I want a chai tea” is like saying “I want a tea tea”. What we know in the United States as chai or yogi tea is actually called “masala chai” in India

Also, I just want to point out that this Ayurvedic recipe has been around for centuries, especially in the northern state of Punjabi. But it was  introduced in the US relatively recently, if you think about it.  Of course, you don’t need to be a yogi to enjoy a delicious cup of yogi tea.

Thank you Sarah for sharing this recipe with us.

Namaste. Sat Nam!

Hari Singh Bird’s Website
Yogi Tea Website

If you live in San Diego and you want to experience kundalini yoga, come to Sarah Sang’s free Sadhana at the Soul Of Yoga. It’s the second Sunday of every Month!

Ayurvedic Vegan Kitchari

Kitchari ( pronounced kich-uh-ree) is a staple of Indian cuisine and Ayurvedic medicine. It is considered a cleansing and detoxifying food. It’s traditionally prepared with yellow mung dal, basmati rice, seasonal vegetables, ghee or oil and spices. 

According to Ayurveda, we are all composed of three doshas: vata (air and ether), pitta( fire and water) and kapha ( earth and water). Kitchari balances the three doshas.

It really is the perfect one-pot meal. It’s easy-to-digest and provides a complete protein ( the 10 essential amino acids our bodies cannot make and we must get from our food). 

To learn more about your dosha type, you can take a test at The Chopra Center 

To make the perfect kitchari consider the following guidelines published by Kripalu School of Ayurveda:

For Vata:

  • Use twice the amount of  oil.
  • Add a pinch of cayenne pepper while cooking.
  • Add about ½ inch of chopped, fresh ginger to the oil when cooking the spices.
  • Use quinoa instead of rice to increase the protein content.
  • Use double the amount of rice.
  • Best veggies for a vata variation are carrots, zucchini, peas, sweet potatoes, and asparagus.

For Pitta:

  • Use half the amount of mustard seeds and black pepper, or omit mustard seeds altogether.
  • Best veggies for a pitta variation are leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, zucchini, and carrots.


  • Use leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, zucchini, and carrots.
  • Add about ½ inch of chopped, fresh ginger to the oil when cooking the spices.

This is my favorite recipe for balancing vata-pitta during the winter time. I hope you enjoy it!

Ayurvedic Vegan Kitchari
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  1. 1 cup yellow mung dal beans
  2. 1/2 cup basmati rice
  3. 2 Tbsp sesame oil
  4. 1 tsp mustard seeds
  5. 1 tsp fennel seeds
  6. 1 tsp cumin seeds
  7. 4-6 curry leaves (optional)
  8. 1 tsp ground cumin
  9. 1 tsp ground coriander
  10. 1 tsp ground turmeric
  11. 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  12. 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
  13. 4 cups of seasonal vegetables: 2 cups of green veggies ( spinach, kale, celery) + 2 cups of orange veggies ( carrots, sweet potato, squash)
  14. 2 cloves
  15. 2 cardamon pods
  16. salt and pepper to taste
  17. Handful of fresh cilantro leaves (optional)
  1. Soak the mung dal beans in water for 4-8 hours (this helps with digestion). Rinse and strain until the water runs clear, about five times.
  2. Heat the sesame oil in a large pot over medium to high heat.
  3. Add all the seeds and toast until the mustard seeds pop.
  4. Add the grounded spices and a asafoetida.
  5. Stir in the mung dal and rice.
  6. Add 6 cups of water, cloves, cardamon pods and vegetables
  7. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer.
  8. Cook at least for one hour, until the beans and rice are soft and the kitchari has a porridge-like consistency.
  9. Serve warm with fresh cilantro on top, if desired.
Sunshine & Kale http://sunshineandkale.com/

{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
  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
  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.
  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!


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”.


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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  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)
  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!