What to Eat in Spring
As the sun rises higher in the sky and the ground gradually warms up, it’s highly beneficial to celebrate spring with the exciting fresh colours and flavours of local and seasonal veggies.
Spring is governed by the element of wood, of which the primary organ is the liver. The liver is supported with the nutrition inherent in new leaves and shoots, the colour green, and with foods with sour flavours.
As the environment around you begins to burst with new life, allow your body to enjoy that same energy by incorporating the following foods into your diet:
Fresh leafy greens and baby root veggies
Fermented foods with their own new microcosm of friendly bacteria!
Newly sprouted seeds and beans
Fresh Leafy Greens & Root Vegetables
See how many of the following you can try in the coming weeks:
Stir fry spring greens with ginger, chilli and garlic and then dowse with coconut aminos, a delicious sauce made from coconut sap. Resembling light soy sauce or tamari, coconut aminos is dark, rich, salty and slightly sweet in flavour. It’s also soy free, gluten free, low GI and packed with minerals, vitamins and 17 different types of amino acids, the building blocks of protein.
Grate new beetroot and carrots to serve with toasted walnuts and a lemony dressing.
Mash cauliflower with cream, salt, black pepper and freshly ground nutmeg as an alternative to mashed potato.
Roast baby beetroots until they are soft and sweet before serving them with a garlicky yogurt dressing.
Steam spindly new asparagus before dipping into raw salted butter or soft-boiled eggs.
Thinly slice rhubarb into raw salads.
Blitz wild garlic with olive oil, cashews and garlic to use instead of pesto.
Steam purple sprouting broccoli and serve with plenty of grass fed butter.
Lizzie will be sharing some recipes for simple ferments later in the season. For now, see if you can pick up some naturally fermented sauerkraut or kimchi to add to your meals.
Natural yoghurt, milk kefir, water kefir and kombucha are also lovely ways to support both your liver and your entire digestive microbiome. If you do not tolerate fermented foods well, you can still benefit your liver with sour foods by adding lemon juice or cider vinegar to your drinking water.
Sprouted Seeds and Beans
Sprouting food makes it more digestible, releasing vitamins and enzymes that help your body break down and digest the sprouts along with any other foods you eat with them.
Other reasons to sprout include:
It’s very quick and easy.
It’s fresh, raw food you can grow in your kitchen.
Sprouted seeds and beans are incredibly cheap to make.
They contain protein, fibre, enzymes and phytonutrients.Sprouted seeds and beans are delicious scattered over salads, sprinkled on soups or stuffed into sandwiches. I shall pass you over to Lizzie who’s going to show you how to make these crunchy little powerhouses of nutrition!
How to Grow Your Own Sprouted Mung Beans
You can sprout all kinds of seeds, beans, lentils and peas. Mung beans are my favourite to sprout and they’re easy to find in most supermarkets.
You will need:
Large glass jar – 1 litre
Piece of fine muslin
200g mung beans
Rinse the beans and place them in a clean glass jar. Cover with filtered water and leave them to soak for 8 hours or overnight.
Place the muslin cloth over the mouth of the jar and secure with a rubber band. Drain the liquid through this and rinse with fresh water 2-3 times.
Turn the jar upside down and place at a an degree angle in a bowl to allow all the water to drain, ensuring the jar is not sitting in the liquid. Cover the whole jar with a tea towel and keep dark.
Repeat the rinsing and draining process 2-3 times a day, and you should have fresh green sprouts within a few days.
You can store the sprouts in your fridge if the jar is fitted with an airtight lid. Make sure they’re well drained beforehand as wet sprouts will turn mouldy quickly.
If you have any questions about food and nutrition, feel free to ask in the comments below.