Thanksgiving is just around the corner and I know a lot of you are cleaning those houses, finalizing your menus, and prepping for extended family! Holidays meant for quality family time, feasts, and gratitude can actually end up causing us more stress than joy. Hopefully a couple scrumptious vegetarian recipes can help us lighten the load from our turkey, potato, and gravy comas and a few yoga positions can help lower our anxiety levels and aid digestion. Try this delicious and nutritious recipe from "The Hungry Girls" .
Sweet Potato, Green Bean and Smoked Paprika Salad
- extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 onion, finely sliced
- 1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into thick wedges about 5 cm long
- 2 potatoes, cut into thick wedges about 5 cm long
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- large handful of green beans, topped and tailed, cut in half on the diagonal
- 3 ripe tomatoes, cut into wedges
- handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- sour cream or natural yoghurt to serve (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Heat around 3 tablespoons of oil in an ovenproof frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion, sweet potato and potato and pan-fry for 5–10 minutes, tossing occasionally, until lightly colored.
2. Stir in the garlic, paprika, 1 teaspoon of salt and generous black pepper, coating well. Transfer the pan to the oven and roast until the vegetables are tender (around 15 minutes).
3. Meanwhile, bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Add the beans and simmer for a few minutes, then drain.
4. Put the hot beans into a large bowl along with the tomato and parsley. Add the hot roasted vegetables, lemon juice and another good splash of oil and toss to combine. Add extra salt and pepper to taste. Serve with dollops of sour cream or natural yoghurt if desired.
The following Thanksgiving recipe is one of our favorites from Jane Sigal in "Food and Wine". It has the perfect touch of sweetness and is absolutely delectable!
Baked Apples With Oyster Mushrooms
- 4 baking apples (about 1/2 pound each)
- 1/2 lemon
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1/2 pound oyster mushrooms, sliced 1/4 inch thick
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped mixed herbs, such as parsley, basil, tarragon and chives
- 1/2 cup apple cider
1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Spray a small, shallow baking dish just large enough to hold the apples with vegetable oil cooking spray. Cut a thin slice off the top of each apple. Using a small spoon, scrape out the apple flesh, leaving a 1/4-inch-thick shell. Rub and moisten the apple cups with the lemon to discourage browning. Discard the skin from the apple tops and the seeds from the cores and finely chop the apple flesh.
2.Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the chopped apple and the oyster mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Cook the mixture over moderately high heat until the liquid evaporates, about 5 minutes. Stir in the herbs.
3.Season the apple cups with salt and pepper. Spoon the mushroom mixture into the cups, mounding it slightly. Set the apples in the prepared baking dish and pour the cider around them. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the apples are tender; if they begin to brown during cooking, cover them with foil. Serve hot.
Yoga for digestion:
We all know what that overstuffed feeling is like and it is not pleasant! Here are a couple yoga positions that will not only aid digestion but will help calm the mind and reduce stress at the same time. I suggest everyone take a few minutes for themselves this Thanksgiving and find a quiet corner for your stretches.
Apanasana- knees hugged to chest
Health Magazine describes how to do it as follows: Lie down, relax and inhale, placing your hands on your knees. Exhale, and hug your knees to your chest. Rock your knees from side to side to maximize the stretch. Stay for five to ten breaths, and release your knees. Repeat this move a few more times.
Standing forward bend
Chatelaine Everyday Extraordinary explains: Make sure feet are hip-width apart and inhale to raise arms up. Lowering down, exhale and bend at the hips to come forward. Tuck chin in towards chest and lengthen head towards the floor. Bend your knees if it’s more comfortable. Hold for 5 to 7 breaths. This will calm the nervous system and pacify adrenals in the kidneys to compress the abdominal area to aid in digestion.