Make Summer More Enjoyable Through Food!

Yoga and food are inextricably linked but eating healthy is more difficult than ever. Eating healthy everyday is essential to our health and wellbeing. We need to eat nourishing food to maintain energy levels, stave off illness and encourage healthy relationships, etc.

I work irregular hours and have no motivation to shop, prep and cook dinner at the end of the day. Supper Works in Toronto has been an answer to my woes. I go into the store once a month and prep fresh, healthy dinner entrees that I take home and put in my freezer. That means more time for me to enjoy my summer and no-brainer dinners.

Below Susan Patterson, the owner of SupperWorks Leaside, provides a few ideas how you can make your summer more enjoyable through food:

  1. Slow down and plan ahead to makes dinnertime less stressful. Being organized doesn’t have to take much time but it can save a lot of last minute headaches- and will certainly save you time in the end. You might even invest in setting up a weekly meal planner. Plan and shop for meals a few days or even a week in advance so you can be sure you have the ingredients you need on hand. Keep very perishable items and some ready-to-cook dinners in the freezer to save having to shop frequently. You don’t want to have to run to the store from the cottage or even stop on your way home from work to pick up one essential but missing ingredient. Wouldn’t it be nicer to go straight home?
  2. Try some fresh new foods. This is a great time of year to try something new. You might find some new vegetables or at least some interesting variations on familiar foods at local farmers markets. Think heirloom tomatoes, purple carrots, the many varieties of mushrooms. Take your kids and let them choose – they will be more likely to eat their veggies!
  3. Cook extras. That way you will have easy leftovers for lunches or spontaneous dinners when unexpected company drops by. BBQ’d meats, chicken, shrimp or fish are also great to use on salads the next day for lunch or a lighter dinner. For example, all of SupperWorks’ Flat Iron steaks and marinated chickens such as Lemon Rosemary Chicken make a bed of leafy green salad something special.
  4. Speaking of salads, always have salad ingredients on hand – some of my favourites are berries, nuts, seeds, mixed greens, avocado, crumbles of cheese (goat!). A great salad can accompany almost anything – like a delicious burger – to complete an easy, summery supper. For an easy and delightful salad dressing, try one-third good quality olive oil, one-third balsamic vinegar and one-third maple syrup.
  5. Quiche is another excellent staple in the summer. It can serve as a breakfast, lunch or dinner and comes in many different varieties. It can be served hot or cold. And it’s an first-rate source of protein.
  6. Have some fun with your child (age 8 or over) at a special Saturday morning Bring Your Child session at SupperWorks. Children learn how to put meals together and experience shows that children who have a hand in making dinner are much more likely to enjoy eating it – and are even willing to try more adventurous foods!
  7. Ok, one more thing. You’re probably not going to be happy if you add a few pounds to your frame eating all this good food. It is bathing suit season after all. So enjoy all the flavours but watch your portion sizes. Esstablish a portion size that works for you and use it as a guideline. And get out and enjoy all the opportunities for outdoor exercise!

SupperWorks Leaside and SupperWorks to Go! is located at 105 Vanderhoof Ave in Toronto.

Save Time. Save Money. Eat Better.

Pick Up and Delivery options are available. SupperWorks to Go now means you can drop in and select meals that have been pre-made with out the commitment!

Mention this article for a complimentary side dish

(up to $8 value) when you make a purchase!

Myths about Injury, Pain, Ache and Strain & The Truths of Healing – Part 2

Tree Handstand VariationIs my last article I discussed Susi Hately’s* 5 myths about pain and truths about healing. Here are 5 more to convince you that life without pain is entirely possible. It is all up to you.

Healing from pain should be a multi-disciplinary team effort. Going to just one healthcare/wellness practitioner may provide some ease from the discomfort but the pain keeps returning.  Often what we fail to realize is that the problem doesn’t lie in the same place that feel the pain. Restriction through the hips can be the source of knee or ankle pain for example. Elbow or wrist pain from the shoulder blades. That being said, to address the issue of pain is to treat the whole person, not just the “spot” of pain.

Along with your yoga therapist you may wish to see your chiropractor to relieve subluxations, massage therapy to relax and calm the muscles, physio, osteo, acupuncturist, naturopath, aromatherapist, reiki, healing waters,  etc. Diet too, is often overlooked when it comes to the healing process of physical pain. The food that we consume can impact how we think, feel and act. It is important that you also take this into consideration and get tested for food allergies (I won’t go any further into this today).

Here are 5 more myths about pain the truths of healing:

Sixth Myth: Acheyness is normal.

Sixth Truth: Physiologically, yes, it is. And, it doesn’t have to be a normal part of your life.

 

Seventh Myth: Being achey is a part of yoga.

Seventh Truth: Nope. Ease is part of yoga.

 

Eighth Myth: Pulling the shoulders back, belly in and chin in/back is part of improving posture.

Eighth Truth: A well-functioning body surrenders upward. This creates a calm, steady, and strong posture.

 

Ninth Myth: Once pain is there, it will never be resolved.

Ninth Truth: Tissue can change. It is a matter of listening and being aware and then acting on what you hear and perceive.

 

Tenth Myth: Pain is just a way of life.

Tenth Truth: For now, maybe. And if there is a compelling reason for change, and the right professional/team of professionals to guide you, anything can change.

When you work with me in rehabilitative yoga, I can refer you to excellent healthcare/wellness providers in Toronto to help you get out of pain fast.

(*Myths published by Susi Hately – Functional Synergy)

Recipe of the Month – Badshah Kitchari

The days are getting shorter and evenings are getting colder and I’m stockpiling blankets for the winter. As we spend more time indoors we begin to crave those comfort foods we know and love. One of my favourites is a dish called Kitchari. It’s warm, delicious and healthy! There are many variations on this dish but traditional kitchari is made of rice and lentils.  My friend from Nepal taught me how to make a yummy Nepalese kitchari while I was living in Hong Kong and this has become my go to meal when I want something easy to make.  What I love about kitchari is you can make it your own by adding your favourite vegetables and even meat if you wish. The recipe I want to share with you today was inspired by British Indian kedgeree along with Egyptian kushari. “Badshah kitchari” means “the kitchari of kings.” My husband made it for dinner last night and I encourage you to try it out.

FullSizeRenderRecipe serves 4

Ingredients:
  • 1/4 cups basmati rice
  • 1/4 cups split mung beans (moong dal) (or yellow split peas or red lentils if these are easier to find)
  • 3 tablespoons ghee or unsalted butter
  • 2-inch cinnamon stick
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 fresh green chilli, finely chopped (optional)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground tumeric
  • 3 cups vegetable stock (or water)
  • your choice of vegetables (e.g. carrots, broccoli, spinach, etc) chopped
  • cashews + almonds (optional garnish)
To Make:

Combine rice and lentils and rinse well. Allow to soak in a bowl of cold water for at least 30 minutes or up to an hour.

Using a wide-bottomed frying pan, melt ghee on medium heat. When ghee starts to foam, add cinnamon stick, cloves and cumin. Stir for 2 minutes (smell the goodness!). Add onions and cook for 8-10 minutes, until soft.

Add green chilli (optional) and garlic and cook for 2 more minutes. Add turmeric and salt.

Drain rice and lentils and add these to the pan. Pour in the vegetable stock (add vegetables)
and bring to boil. Put lid on pan and turn head down to simmer.

Cook until water is absorbed, which should be around 25 minutes. Leave it to rest for 5 minutes with lid on, then fluff with a fork.

Serve in bowls and garnish with chopped cashews and almonds.

 

Enjoy. Recipe from the book “Made in India” by Meera Sodha

Recipe of the Month: Basil Strawberry Tartine

Strawberry Basil Tartine

Photo: courtesy of Joyous Health

Last month I featured a Iced Earl Grey Lattes . This month’s feature recipe is making my mouth water! I came across this delightful summer treat from Joyous Health. I will make a gluten-free version for myself. This is a perfect snack or light lunch to serve guests this summer using freshly picked strawberries and basil from the garden.

Recipe:

2 slices of your favourite bread, toasted or grilled

First layer: Sliced organic cheese or avocado for a dairy-free option.

Sliced fresh strawberries

Chopped fresh basil

Sprinkle of sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper

Drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.