Are you ready to sluff off some winter weight or just embrace the spring season with a new pep in your step? I’ve got just the trick. It’s my new favorite salad combo topped with a stellar dressing from the one and only Kimberly Snyder from Beauty Detox Foods.
I call it the Woodland Goddess because it reminds me of a recent walk in the woods, being surrounded by hearty woodlands and the emergence of all things green. Yes that is right, in Vermont things are still sprouting and springing up and slowly but surely our landscape is transforming from brown to bright green.
Why green is the new black
According to the ancient Indian science of Ayurveda, winter is vata season: the season governed by air and the ethers. In other words, it dries us out. Our skin, our lips, our pale yet lovely legs. The air is dry, the ground is cold and our bodies take on these qualities as well.
Spring transitions us into kapha season, the season ruled by the earth and water elements. Our bodies and minds tend to take on the qualities of our natural surroundings (think thick, heavy mud and earth). Having trouble getting out of bed lately? That’s kapha. Know you need to start some projects but “kinda don’t wanna?” That’s kapha too. Feeling congested or just a bit heavy after a long winter? It’s kapha baby.
In springtime mother nature gives us just the right foods we need to bring balance to this heaviness in our bodies: enter light, crisp, fresh greenery. Snappy green veggies and wild greens like fiddleheads and ramps. To feel your absolute best this season aim for eating green, whether it’s lightly cooked or fresh from the ground.
The secret to a SENSEational salad
Have you ever tried to “be good” and only eat salads while trying to lose some weight? Ever feel like things are going along wonderfully, then you see this big, perfectly baked cookie and just HAVE to have it? If so, don’t fret. It’s not that your willpower sucks. Read on.
The thing is, when we eat too many greens, especially out of season, our body gets a signal that it needs something heavier, grounding, something to feel more satisfied. If your salads consist primarily of lettuce with no substantial, grounding elements, your body will will be looking for it and that’s when we reach for the baked goods, the brownie we would have normally turned down at work, and the big honking cookie that just seems to call your name.
To make sure you can enjoy your healthy greens without feeling like you NEED sweets or even a second meal right after it, be sure to add some grounding elements to your salad like nuts, seeds, some protein, maybe some whole grains, and a little sweetness in the form of raisins, cranberries, etc. This will signal to your body that all it’s needs are met. You’ll feel nourished and balanced while slimming down naturally.
How to make your own woodland goddess salad
A couple handfuls of Romaine (some spinach or mesclun too if you like)
1/2 cup roasted zucchini (thinly slice zucchini, toss with a drizzle of olive oil and crushed garlic, salt and pepper. Spread onto a baking sheet and roast at 350 in the oven for 15-25 minutes or until browned)
1/2 cup roasted asparagus (same deal as zucchini but I like to cut the stalks in 2-inch pieces)
1/4 cup walnuts
sprinkle of raisins
Roast the zucchini and asparagus. While it cooks, assemble salad and dressing below. Then serve it up in a nice big beautiful bowl.
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon tamari
3 tablespoons raw apple cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon high-quality sea salt
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1/3 cup tahini (raw if possible)
2 tablespoons almond butter (raw if possible)
1. Put all the ingredients, except for the tahini and almond butter, in a blender or hand stick blender and blend until smooth.
2. Add the tahini and almond butter and blend again until the dressing is thoroughly combined.
Now it’s your turn
Tell us, what’s the best salad combination or concoction you have ever tried? How do you make a killer salad that satisfies? Leave us your delicious wisdom in the comments below!