As the weather begins to cool off it’s time to start introducing more cooked foods into your diet. Raw foods are great but during the winter season it’s smart to turn up the heat a bit and give your body cooked foods as well. Helping your body keep it’s internal heat from cooked foods makes it easier on your body, especially if you live in the north.
I live in Michigan, and yesterday we saw the first snow of this season! So i’m ready for the cooked food, the steamed vegetables, soups and stews.
The great thing about food, herbs, spices and the recipes putting them together is that we can utilize plant properties to our advantage based on the season. We’ve all heard the term “eat seasonally” and that’s a great piece of advice to follow. Seasonal food is tastier and more nutritious because it’s grown in the season that you’re eating it. It’s a good guideline to follow to get the best taste and most nutrition out of mother nature.
The great thing about spices and herbs though is that they store well so they can be incorporated all year round. Sure, fresh herbs and spices are best! but if you can utilize warming spices in the colder months then you really grow to appreciate them even more.
Today’s recipe is all organic, nutritionally dense, rich in healthy fiber and fats, great for the immune system and warming to your body on a cold winter day.
Ingredients You’ll Need:
- 2 tablespoons of organic coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon organic cumin seeds
- 1 medium organic onion, finely chopped
- 3 ripe organic tomatoes, finely chopped
- 1 medium head of organic cauliflower, cut into small pieces
- 1 jalapeno, stemmed, seeded, chopped
- 1 cup of chopped organic kale
- 2 teaspoons ginger paste (also known as minced ginger, found here)
- 1 tablespoon cumin powder (found here)
- 1 tablespoon coriander powder (found here)
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder (found here)
- 1 can full-fat, unsweetened coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon sea salt (found here)
- 2 tablespoons chopped organic cilantro
Instructions For Making The Stew:
In a medium sized pot, heat the coconut oil for 30 seconds on low-medium heat until it melts.
Add the cumin seeds and stir until they are mixed well in the pot. Then add the minced onions and cook for another minute till soft, and then, add the tomatoes, stir the onions and tomatoes together and cook for a few more minutes until the you see the tomatoes soften.
Add the rest of the ingredients and stir everything together well. Cover the pot with a top and let it simmer for about 15 minutes or so, stir every few minutes to keep parts or ingredients in the stew from burning.
This recipe serves about 4 people. The leftover stew can be stored in air-tight container and works as breakfast, lunch or dinner the next day! (Yes, breakfast! why not?)
Additions for taste or texture:
Rice: Adding white rice can be a great way to add flavor and a starch texture.
Beans: Adding black beans can add density and heartiness to the soup as well as additional nutrients.
Chicken: Adding organic, free-range chicken can be a great addition for protein and to add flavor.
The Health & Nutritional Benefits Of This Stew:
Cauliflower: It’s one nutrient-dense cruciferounce vegetable. It contains 77% of the recommended daily value of vitamin C which is great for the immune system. It’s also a good source of other nutrients such as vitamin K, protein, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, magnesium, phosphorus, fiber, vitamin B6, folate, pantothenic acid, potassium, and manganese. It’s also rich in insoluble fiber which helps to keep the Colon healthy.
Ginger: Helps with muscle pain and soreness. Heating to the body. Helps improve circulation as well as immunity. Contains gingerol which is the main active medicinal component. Gingerol is a strong anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant.
Turmeric: Arguably and in my opinion a proven truth to be one of if not the best anti-inflammatory medicines on the planet. If you have any inflammation in your body, from your gut to your arms or legs, any pain or inflammation. Turmeric is tremendously valuable. It’s also great for people with depression or any mental or memory related condition. It’s a strong antioxidant that helps cope with stress.
Coriander: Coriander is often discarded and ignored but it has tremendous health value. It contains many nutrients that are beneficial for skin health and skin conditions. It is also beneficial for regulating blood pressure, cholesterol, anemia and other health conditions.
Cumin: Cumin aids in digestion, improves immunity, helps with sleep disorders such as insomnia, aids lung health in dealing with asthma, bronchitis or something down to the common cold.
Coconut Oil & Milk: Coconut is rich in healthy fats including MCT (medium chain triglyceride) which is very beneficial for brain health as well as long-term energy.
Tomatoes: Tomatoes are rich in lycopene which is an antioxidant that helps with heart and prostate health. It’s also great for skin health.
Onion: Onions are rich in quercetin which is an antioxidant beneficial for heart health. Onions are also great for boosting the immune system, antibacterial, antifungal and an antiseptic.
Cilantro: Cilantro is rich in many minerals including potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, and magnesium. It is also rich in many plant chemicals (phytochemicals) that benefit human health. It is also a great for helping to remove heavy metals from the body.
The ginger and turmeric are warming to the body and the coconut oil and milk contain fats that help for the slow absorption of these spices to continue to keep your body warm for a longer period of time. This soup is delicious, nutritious and great for the winter time! Enjoy!