An Ayurvedic (Vegetarian) Holiday Meal

This Thanksgiving, whether we are hosting a meal or cooking for ourselves, these wholesome recipes from top ayurvedic chefs will fill our plates and our lives with nature’s bounty.

Dipping Oil for Bread

Forget the olive oil and rosemary — try the unique flavor of roasted cumin in delicious ghee!

  • 4 tablespoons ghee
  • 1 teaspoon coarsely-ground roasted cumin
  • ½ teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
  • Salt to taste
  1. Gently melt the ghee until it's a golden oil.
  2. Blend in the other ingredients.
  3. Serve with wedges of warm crusty bread.

(To dry roast cumin, place a small pan on medium heat. Pop in the cumin seeds and heat them, shaking the pan occasionally. As soon as the spice starts releasing its fragrance, remove pan from heat — the seeds will burn quickly! For the best aroma, roast and grind fresh.)

Sweet 'N' Spicy Fresh Fruit Salad

Fresh fruit is a welcome addition to any festive table. This blend of Vata-pacifying fruit and spices works perfectly as a colorful side dish or appetizer.

Serves 6-8

  • 6 cups prepared mixed fresh fruit

(For the Vata season, choose from such Vata-pacifying fruits as strawberries, pineapple, mangoes, papaya, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, watermelon and oranges; choose firm fruit and prepare bite-sized pieces.)

Dressing:

  • 3 tablespoons ghee
  • 2 teaspoons Organic Vata Churna
  • 1 tablespoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon powdered brown sugar

Garnish:

  • ½ cup coarsely-chopped mixed nuts (cashews, almonds, pistachios, walnuts, etc.)
  • 1 small sprig of fresh mint, washed
  1. Place the prepared fruit in a large salad bowl.
  2. To prepare the dressing, heat ghee in a small pan.
  3. Sauté the Organic Vata Churna in the ghee until the spices release their aroma.
  4. Remove promptly from heat and cool to room temperature.
  5. Whisk in the other ingredients until well blended.
  6. Pour the dressing over the fruit and toss gently until evenly coated with the dressing.
  7. Garnish with the chopped nuts and mint. Serve immediately.

Green Beans Dressed in Coconut Milk

by Mosarene Scalzer

Serves 5

  • 1 pound green beans, cut into small pieces
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot or organic cornstarch, dissolved in 3 tablespoons room-temperature water
  • 2 tablespoons ghee
  • 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon chopped leeks
  • ½ teaspoon freshly-ground pepper
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced into quarters
  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  1. Steam the green beans until soft but still bright green.
  2. While the beans are steaming, prepare the arrowroot by stirring it into the room-temperature water until completely dissolved.
  3. In a sauté pan or wok, melt the ghee and add the mustard seeds.
  4. Once they start to pop like popcorn, add the leeks and freshly-ground pepper and sauté until the leeks are soft.
  5. Add turmeric and salt, and stir. Add the tomatoes, and stir. Add the green beans, and stir. Stir again.
  6. Add the coconut milk with the arrowroot-water mixture, and stir again.
  7. Turn the heat off and add the freshly-chopped cilantro, and stir. Serve this colorful dish warm!

Quinoa with Raisins

by Mosarene Scalzer

Serves 5

  • 2 tablespoons ghee
  • 1 cup quinoa (try red, white, or a mixture of the two for a festive look)
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 2 tablespoons raisins
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups water
  1. Heat the ghee in a two-quart cooking pan.
  2. Roast the fennel seeds and raisins in the ghee until the raisins start to look slightly golden.
  3. Add the quinoa and sauté seeds over low heat for a few minutes.
  4. Add the salt, pepper and water and bring to a boil.
  5. Turn heat to simmer and cover pan with a lid.
  6. Cook until the water is gone, about 20 minutes.
  7. Enjoy the subtle combination of sweet and salty — and the added protein found in this ancient grain.

Organic Cashew Cookies

by My Vedic Kitchen™

  • 4 oz. organic cashew butter (or almond butter if preferred)
  • ¾ cup organic ghee
  • ½ cup organic raw sugar
  • 1 cup organic light brown sugar
  • Egg replacer for 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons organic plain yogurt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon organic vanilla
  • 1¾ cups organic dry quick-cooking rolled oats
  • 2 cups organic all-purpose flour
  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients in succession and reserve the flour until the last ingredient has been added.
  2. Add the flour slowly, bit by bit, and stir into the previous ingredients until well blended.
  3. Chill the dough for 1 hour in the refrigerator.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350° F and roll the dough into 1-inch round balls.
  5. Place each dough ball on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake a batch for 10-12 minutes.
  6. Remove each batch from the oven and allow to cool on a cookie sheet until each cookie has hardened.
  7. Store in an airtight container.

Enjoy!


Disclaimer
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.