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Even the most diehard Sweetgreen devotee knows that once temperatures drop below 60 degrees, it’s hard to commit to a bowl full of cold vegetables — and there’s actually a reason for that. “As the weather gets colder, it is natural for your body to crave foods that will warm you from the inside out,” Serena Poon, certified nutritionist, chef, reiki master, and founder of the method of Culinary Alchemy tells TZR in an email. That said, you don’t have to quit your beloved salads for the colder months — just opt for a warm winter salad instead.
And don’t be surprised if you end up adopting warm salads into your year-round repertoire as well. Not only are they comforting, but as Poon explains, they’re generally also easier to digest than their raw counterparts. Plus, they’re just as easy to throw together — Poon says you can essentially use anything you have on hand in your kitchen, though she does have a few guiding principles that may be helpful if you’re totally new to the world of warm salads.
“I recommend eating seasonal root vegetables, preferably from the farmers market, but also listening to what your body needs,” she explains. “Tune into which vegetables will nourish you and make you feel your best during this meal. Make sure to roast or sauté whichever vegetables and grains you select until they are fully cooked and soft to the taste for the best digestion. Add oils for moisturizing effects and herbs for flavor and health benefits.”
But if you’re not ready to make up your own just yet, there are five easy warm winter salads ahead to get you started. Bon appetit!
Warm Salad Recipe: Nourishing Root Vegetable Salad
One of Poon’s own favorite warm salads is one that she says “is inspired by the cultural cross section from my studies in Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine, two practices that often use warm salads for balance and digestion.”Print
Nourishing Root Vegetable Salad
- 1 beet
- 1/2 fennel bulb
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 3 tbs avocado oil
- 1/2 cup dry millet
- 3 stalks of collards
- 1 cup mushrooms
- 1/4 cup walnuts
Start by chopping and roasting one beet with half a fennel bulb, a diced clove of garlic, and a tablespoon of avocado oil for about 45 minutes. Separately, cook 1/2 cup of dry millet on a stove top and mix it with a tablespoon of avocado oil once it’s cooked.
Then, sauté three stalks of collard greens in a tablespoon of oil and a clove of chopped garlic. Stir in a cup of mushrooms, 1/4 cup of walnuts, and the fennel. Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl and dress with a warm oil dressing with fresh herbs.