Abhyanga – The ayurvedic oil massage

abhyangaIt’s January and everyone’s talking about their dry skin. My clients are soaking up extra massage oil. They report using plenty of lotion, but sometimes, their skin still needs help. A professional massage goes a long way, but did you know that Ayurveda has just the cure? You can zap dry skin with a daily self-massage. Continue reading

Warm Date Smoothie – Nourishing Ojas

ojas smoothie cupHey, smoothie lovers! It’s time to think about swapping that raw, cold smoothie for something to balance the cooler weather. The autumnal equinox is right around the corner; time to shift gears and start nourishing our ojas for the winter. Continue reading

Ground Cherry Salsa Salad

ground cherry salsa with avocado and cucumberIn Japan, Houzuki is a “ground cherry.” It’s not that the fruit is mashed up, but that it is a low growing plant. When ready to be eaten, it tends to drop its fruit on the ground, hence the name I suppose. They ripen in their husk to a golden hue. I’ve heard the ground cherry likened to a gooseberry, but can’t attest to the similarity.

The ground cherry has a lively flavor that is at once sweet and acidic, like pineapple or tomato. The local farmers markets are flush with beautiful fruits, so I wanted to make a fresh fruit salsa. Continue reading

Purple Carrot Chutney

purple carrot chutney ramekin

I’ve been on a chutney kick lately. Chutney goes well with rice, pasta, corn cakes, and idli (fermented bean and rice cakes). It makes a great dip, but it’s so good that I’ve been known to eat it by the spoonful. If you struggle with finding new ways to pack a ton of vegetables into a meal, then chutney is a great choice. Continue reading

Ayurveda and Lemon Water

lemon water juicerOhayou gozaimasu! Good morning from Okinawa, Japan.  It’s January, the month of new beginnings and changes. It also began with a new moon, which is interesting even if you don’t think so.

Did you make any resolutions this year? If so, tell me about them. If not, I suggest that you add warm lemon water to your morning routine, known as dinacharya in ayurveda. It’s uncomplicated and effective, valuable attributes in resolutions if I do say so myself. Continue reading

Goya Chanpuru, an Okinawan favorite

goya chanpuru

goya chanpuru

Yesterday, I would have traded a slice of chocolate cake for this bitter melon dish. Crazy, but true. I wouldn’t have traded a whole chocolate cake for it though, I’m not insane. I blame the heat. My body needed some cooling bitter taste.

Goya Chanpuru is an Okinawa classic. This knobby green bitter melon is useful during the hot, humid summers of Okinawa. Chanpuru means “to mix” and can be used with any number of vegetables. The usual recipe has goya, onion, egg and pork of some variety. I didn’t do anything fancy here. I just wanted the goya. I guess it was a teensy bit fancy since I bought both green and white goya. What’s the difference, you ask? Not a clue. Continue reading

Stewed Apricots with Vanilla and Cardamom

stewed apricot overheadLe sigh. Is it just me? Doesn’t this just SOUND luscious and yummy? I intended this to be a breakfast post, but I think it would also make a lovely dessert, perhaps with some coconut milk?

So, fruit for breakfast is a good ayurvedic start to the day. Ojas and all.  Continue reading