Our nutritional therapist, advisor and yoga aficionado is finally back from her six month journey around India.  To celebrate, we put her straight to work in the kitchen to knock up something for this week's menu ... image

"Ayurveda is an ancient science of life and and health which sees medicine and diet as complementary, recognising the healing potential of a considerate and nutritious diet.

Inspired by my travels and pining over the flavours of India I have cooked up an Ayurvedic sweet potato and coconut dahl, the perfect dish for a cold February day.....

In Ayurveda lentils are used for both cleansing and building, they are low in fat, high in fibre and rich in protein, iron and b vitamins. The trick is digesting the legumes well, so take time to relax, eat and enjoy your dahl. Taste each of the flavours and chew well.

Traditionally dahls are served with something sour, which along with the warming spices help to stimulate the agni, our digestive fire.  Cumin, mustard seeds and ginger give warmth to the dish and the juice of a lime, the sour.  Combined with the earthy, sweet and subtle flavours of the lentils, sweet potato and coconut this makes for a delicious, nutritious winter warming lunch"


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Sweet Potato & Coconut Dahl

200 g red split lentils 2 sweet potatoes 1 tsp turmeric 3 cloves garlic 200 g desiccated coconut 1 tsp cumin 1 tsp mustard seeds 2 finely chopped shallots 1 tbsp of fresh grated ginger 2 fresh red chillies or 1 tsp dried chilli 2 tbsp coconut oil 2 ripe tomatoes Fresh coriander 1 lime Natural yogurt

Wholegrain flatbread to chapati to serve (optional)

Serves 4

Peel and chop sweet potato into small chunks. Boil the lentils in 3 glasses of water for another 14 minutes then add the sweet potato, a pinch of natural salt and the turmeric. Simmer for a further 15-20 minutes.

Blend the coconut, garlic and cumin to a fine mixture and add to the lentils. Using a potato masher, mash the sweet potato chunks into the dahl mix to smooth out the texture.

Add the mustard seeds to coconut oil in a large pan. Once the seeds have started to pop add the ginger and finely chopped shallots. Sauté until soft and translucent. Add the dahl to the pan and allow to simmer for a further 5-10 minutes.

Chop the tomatoes and coriander and mix with the juice of the lime, Serve the dahl into bowls, garnish with a tablespoon of the fresh salsa and a dollop of natural yogurt.

Warm the bread. Serve. Enjoy. Nourish.