Roasted Baby Summer Squash
8 baby summer squash (zucchini, yellow summer squash, patty pan squash, or any combination of the three)
2 tablespoons sunflower oil, plus additional for brushing
Salt and Pepper
1 cup packed mixed herb leaves (basil, parsley, sage, oregano, rosemary, thyme, mint)
4 cloves garlic
Preheat oven to 450 degrees, or turn on outdoor grill.
Slice squash in half (lengthwise for the long summer squash, horizontally for the patty pan) and take a small slice off the backs so they will sit flat in a pan, cut side up. Score the cut side of the flesh in a diamond pattern, slicing almost to the skin. Lightly brush the cut sides with oil and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.
Combine the 2 Tb oil with the herbs and garlic in a food processor. Process to make a paste. Season to taste with salt and pepper.. Spread the past over the cut sides of the squash.
Roast for about 15 minutes, checking after 10 minutes. Remove from heat when the squash are tender and lightly browned. Serve hot.
Butternut-Apple Crisp - apples and winter squash are sweet, soothing to pitta and vata. The squash is grounding for vata.
3 cups peeled and sliced butternut squash
2 cups peeled and sliced tart apples, such as Granny Smith
1 cup packed brown sugar (I tend to cut this in half)
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour (or whole wheat)
1/2 tsp salt
6 TB butter, softened
1/3 chopped nuts
Preheat oven to 350*. Grease a shallow baking pan.
In a large bowl, combine squash, apples, 1/2 cup brown sugar, spices and lemon juice. Toss to gently mix. Transfer to baking pan and place in preheated oven.
Bake for 30 minutes.
Cominbe the remaining 1/2 cup brown sugar, flour, slat, and butter in a medium-sized bowl. Stir together until the mixture is crumbly. Mix in the nuts. Spread evenly on top of the swash and apples.
Bake for 40 minutes, until golden brown.
Serve warm or cold. Ice cream makes it even better!
The source of these recipes is The Classic Zucchini Cookbook by Nancy C Ralston, Marynor Jordan, and Andrea Chesman
Five tips to help you move through the end of the summer season with ease.
1.) Drink more water.
2.) Eat moist and cooling foods.
3.) Take an afternoon stretch/rest break.
4.) Walk/exercise in the morning when the air if freshest.
5.) Tell your loved one (and others close to you) that you care about them.
As the summer season draws to a close, make sure you take time to get outdoors. Appreciate the long days, the warm weather, and the bounty all around you before its gone. Cultivate a sense of gratitude for this wonderfully abundant season, and let that soothe a tired heart, and softens a weary face. It does much to boost relationships with others, too and may even improve the quality of your sleep.
Here in Colorado, the air grows hotter as the sun rises higher in the sky over the course of the day. That, combined with living at a higher elevation, naturally draws moisture from our bodies each time we breathe. So it’s important to hydrate. Be conscious about how much water you consume each day. Aim to drink close to half your body weight in ounces each day. This alone will keep your muscles fluid and your body systems functioning optimally.
Eating moist and cooling foods help with that, as well. They also soothe and even cool a body that may be irritated at this time of the season by the hot, dry air or a busy schedule. Feeling “off” or a bit irritable? This is a natural reaction at the height of the Pitta (or summer) Season. Pitta is one of the three primary ayurveda doshas or psycho-physiological elements that govern all body/mind activities. It is best kept calm through the food choices we make.
Great choices to consume more of now include: melons, mangos, grapes, and pears, cucumbers, coconut, mint, broccoli, zucchini, as well as coriander and fennel, plain milk, butter, & ghee.
While it might seem like a good idea, grabbing an iced and carbonated drink to cool you down may actually impede digestion. All year long, it is best to consume foods and beverages as close to room temperature as possible to avoid overtaxing the digestive system.
You can cool your system by consuming more of the foods listed above. You can also cool it by resting when the sun is hot and high in the sky. Rather than going on a run or long bicycle ride at mid-day, can you move your exercise activities to earlier in the morning right now? That way you may have time to take a break when the day begins heating up. Rest, rather than activity, soothes an imbalanced Pitta Dosha. How can you work some quiet time into your afternoon?
If you think of pitta as the energy and power of the fire element, it’s easy to understand how the Pitta Dosha relates to the energy of transformation. Pitta personalities may exhibit some fiery qualities – because they typically dot their "I's" and cross their "T's" they make great planners, they’re good at pushing through obstacles, and they like to see results. However, those same qualities can tax the heart, increase digestive acids or blood pressure, and weaken the liver and gallbladder if they get out of whack. Taking time to appreciate the world around you (a walk in nature is the perfect way to do this) and to let others know you appreciate them will go a long way to pacifying an imbalanced pitta dosha.
I invite you, right now, to pause. Take a moment and bring to mind those people you love. Can you send them a message now? Telepathically, electronically, or by even picking up the phone and saying hello.
This is a great way to soothe the heart, and elevate the quality of your relationships. After all, life is short and the summer season is almost over. If you’ve been too busy to reach out and connect, please make time for that now. Your heart will thank you, and so do I.
If you’d like support as you navigate seasonal changes, or you’d like to know more about your unique wellness personality as expressed through your ayurveda dosha, please contact me. I am here to help you navigate the changes in life from a place of strength, calm, and coolness.
Namaste, Sharon Harvey Alexander C-IAYT
PS: To up the hydrating qualities of plain water and make it less "boring", consider adding a squeeze of lime juice and a tiny pinch of pink Himalayan Salt. Enjoy!