Sweet Sunset Soup

22nd February 2022

Golden in colour, rich in nutrients, warming, grounding and deliciously sweet.

I’m so excited to share this simple, delicious and easy one pot meal with you.

Perfect for a light and grounding evening supper, great for those stormy windy weather days. Can also be enjoyed as a lunch with steamed rice, a homemade flatbread or simple crepe style pancakes (pack in a thermos flask to keep hot on your journey)

Ayurveda recommends foods which are moist, light, grounding and easy to digest. This soup/stew is a great example of that.

Ayurveda’s Golden Teaching: LIKE INCREASE LIKE, OPPOSITE BRINGS BALANCE

Windy weather, dry skin & scattered mind? Warm, moist, & sweet will bring balance

Here it is in all its glory!

This makes 1 big portion for a hungry fellow or 2 smaller portions with a side (depending on your hunger)

please note, this can be made with any seasonal veggies so don’t worry if you dont have the exact ingredients, change it up with what you have on hand and whats growing at the time.

You will need:

1/4 cup red lentils *rinsed and soaked for atleast 20 minutes

1 small- medium sweet potato

1 large carrot

1/3 cup chopped celeriac (a very small celeriac)

1 small shallot or small onion (optional)

2 handfuls of spinach/ seasonal greens washed and roughly chopped

1 tablespoon raisins

1 tablespoon ghee/ oil

spices:

1/4 tsp coriander seeds

1/4 tsp fennel seeds

1/4 tsp cumin seeds

small piece ginger finely chopped (around 1/4-1/2tsp)

1/4 tsp turmeric powder or a small piece of turmeric root grated

1/4 tsp rock salt/ sea salt

1 1/2 cups water

Method: Lets get cooking!

-Rinse your lentils until the water runs clear, then soak in fresh water. (A good time to make a cuppa or prep your veg as below)

-Measure all your dried spices in a small bowl and keep aside.

-Chop the onion (if using), chop ginger.

-Wash all the veggies and chop into desired shape/size.

-Drain the lentils and keep aside.

-Warm a large pot (or *instant pot pressure cooker) over a low heat and melt the ghee/add oil. Add in all the spices: ginger, cumin, coriander and fennel seeds and turmeric. Gently saute, add in onion if using and stir.

-Add the lentils and raisins and stir until coated in spices.

-Add water, hard veggies (not the greens yet) and salt and bring to a simmer.

-Cover and cook gently until the lentils and veggies have softened (around 10-15mins) adding more water if needed and stiring now and again

-Add in your greens, turn off the heat and add a little black pepper if you are feeling cold or have a seasonal runny nose 😉

Say a prayer of gratitude for the opportunity to nourish your body with this food, for the earth which provides so much bounty and for the time you have to sit and enjoy.

Eat slowly and enjoy

YUM!

For an added extra yummy treat, top with:

-A squeeze of fresh lime and some chopped herbs

-Toasted sesame seeds or sunflower seeds

Notes:

*If using a pressure cooker instant pot, set to 5 mins.

*Rinsing and soaking lentils makes them easier to digest

*Adding sweet and grounding vegetables like sweet potato and carrots helps curb sugar cravings and gives a satisfying taste

So there you have, a delicious, easy, simple, nourishing, grounding meal.

Take the time to invest in your health and wellbeing by cooking more from scratch with fresh local and if possible organic ingredients. your body and mind will thank you.

Please let me know if you try it 🙂

Love & Peace

Elizabeth

Dewi
Govinda

Yoga, Ayurveda, and Oh Lily! snacks have lots in common. 

When I met Dewi and Govinda the first time, I was inspired by their views on Yoga, Ayurveda, and food. After a couple of conversations, we agreed to give our clients:

A toolkit for thriving this winter: an online day re(treat)

 Autumn is a great time to re-balance our mind and body.

But before we explain more about our idea, I’d like to share the interview we had together

Elizabeth: Hi Dewi and Govinda, it’s nice to be with you here today.
Can you tell us a little bit about your products.

Dewi: On a trip to India, we found the Waterlily seeds in Bihar where Buddha appeared. It was at a wedding to be more precise, water lily seeds were offered along with fruits to the fire for auspicious vows, we were told ” this is food for the Gods” . we then thought about bringing this fantastic product together with our French roots. At this time, Oh Lily! was born.


Elizabeth: That’s so cool that you discovered the seeds in India! What does Oh Lily mean?

Govinda: Oh Lily! is a pun around Oh la la! the famous French expression. We mix it with Lily from water lily seed, the main ingredient of our snacks.

Elizabeth: That’s so cool, I love the pun! Can tell us more about the water lily seeds

Dewi: Water lily seeds also known as makhana in India have been used for centuries in ayurvedic medicine as they are a good source of iron, magnesium, protein and amino acids. Traditionally they are also used during fasting time in India, you can eat them on a grain-free day (Ekadasi/vrat).

Govinda: Water lily seeds come from an aquatic plant, they are great for digestion too.

Elizabeth:I love your snacks! You mention on your products about conscious snacking, can you tell me more about this?

Dewi: Conscious snacking is the evolution of snacking. It means that you know that snacking can be good for you, you are aware about what you are eating and where it comes from. Conscious snacking is about your physical and mental well being.

Elizabeth: I love that. So it’s really about encouraging this connection with your body, mind and soul? The idea that our bodies are sacred and we can consciously be aware of what we feed them?

Dewi: That’s right. The 3 are connected, conscious snacking is also about knowing our true self to serve a higher purpose. Conscious snacking at Oh Lily! is a synonym with simple life, high thinking.

Elizabeth: I know you are both foodies, what is your favourite dish to cook?

Govinda: Broccoli curry. Broccoli is my favourite veggie, and when I’m really hungry it is a quick and very satisfying dish to make. I love how it is easy yet full of flavour and delicious! And I can make it unique every time as I love to play with the spices.

Dewi: I really love cooking kitchri. the slow cooking process is relaxing. You start by looking at your spice box full of colour, cut your vegetables, wash the rice and dal. When it starts cooking it smells so good.

Elizabeth:Wow they both sound delicious. It sounds like you use cooking as a meditation, is that correct?

Both: Yes!

Dewi: We like to meditate daily and cooking is a really great way to do this. Where we can experience the smells, textures and colours, slow down and be more present.

Elizabeth: That is so wonderful, I also love to cook as a meditation and find those moments during the day to slow down. I’m really looking forward to working with you both on our upcoming retreat. Is there anything you want to share with our readers?

Dewi: We feel honoured that you want to offer our customers an experience of a day to connect to themselves and slow down.
On the retreat day, we will boost well-being with simple, relaxing and thoughtful practices – precisely what we all need to prepare for the winter season. Govinda and me will be running the food side of the retreat and are excited to encourage you all to cook as a meditation or form of yoga.

Elizabeth: I can’t wait! It’s going to be such a nice offering and a pleasure to work with you both.

If anyone would like further info about our upcoming retreat offering or about Ohily! Snacks, I’ll share the links below.

MORE ABOUT OHLILY!

Join us for our online retreat on November 13th: https://www.ohlilysnacks.com/products/1-day-online-re-treat

Shop: https://www.ohlilysnacks.com/collections/all

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/teamlilypop/

Date Chutney

15th July 2021

The perfect summer-heat treat to add to your meals. Delicious added to just about anything! (I love it spread on some fresh baked muffins or added to dal).

Ayurveda doesn’t recommend eating fruit with anything else (it ferments in the gut leading to symptoms like gas bloating and discomfort) but dates are an exception and digest well (for most people) with other foods.

To make this delicious date chutney you will need:

1 cup of fresh dates/soft medjool dates

1-2tsp of freshly grated ginger (if you are feeling the summer heat then go for just a pinch)

1/4tsp rock salt

Generous squeeze of lime or lemon

A few sprigs of fresh mint

4 tablespoons of water to blend

If you have cold hands and feet add a pinch of cinnamon also..

METHOD:

Remove stones from dates and rinse.

Blend all ingredients until smooth. (I use a hand blender in a jug/cup and add extra water if needed)

If you don’t have a blender, soak the dates and then squish and squash lovingly with your hands adding all the other ingredients and mashing with a fork to combine well.

Give thanks for these incredible ingredients and enjoy in delicious spoonfuls.

Let me know if you try this delicious cooling treat on any of your meals 😊.

#datechutney #datejam #ayurveda #digestion #sattvicfood #dates #medjooldates #yogicfood #givethanks #ayurvedicfood #ayurvediclifestyle #yogiclifestyle #abundance #naturesbounty #mothernatureisincredible

MADHURA: Sweet Taste

6th May 2021

(Delicious recipe below)
Sweet tasting items are considered the most sattvic ( in appropriate amounts) and can cultivate compassion, peacefulness, and love. Natural sweetness brings us sustaining, long lasting energy, while processed sweets bring us quick energy in short bursts, inevitably leaving us lacking and craving more.

The sweet taste is what builds our tissues, keeps us strong and gives us sustained energy. Naturally sweet foods include grains such as rice, oats and whole wheat, fresh fruits and certain vegetables and ahimsa milk (milk from non-slaughtered and unharmed cows).

Naturally sweet tasting foods can help build ojas (life juice) within us. Especially things like dates.

Whenever I notice my workload creeping up or my energy levels dropping or when I know my moon cycle is on its way. I spend some sacred time in the kitchen preparing little energy bites to make me feel like an utter goddess.

These little ojas balls are not only delicious but so fun to make (squishing and messy) and look divine!

CAROB FENNEL & ROSE OJAS BLISS BITES 

INGREDIENTS YOU WILL NEED:


~20-30 SOFT fresh dates (20 if big medjool, 30 of the smaller varieties) (soak dates if they aren’t squishy soft)

~4 tablespoons raw tahini

~1/2 cup sunflower seeds 

~2 tablespoons fennel seeds 

~1 tablespoon oil (I used coconut, you can use ghee, sunflower etc whatever you have) 

~A pinch of salt

~4 tablespoons of raw Carob powder

~1/4tsp vanilla (optional)

~1 tablespoon cinnamon powder.

~Edible dried rose petals to roll in.

METHOD:

-Roast and grind the fennel seeds and sunflower seeds (can use any seeds).

-Rinse and squish the dates in a large bowl with your hands. Have fun getting messy and connecting with your food.

-Add remaining ingredients and squish lovingly with your hands to make a delicious dough. 

-Roll in edible rose petals say a prayer/ give thanks and enjoy every bite 

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Yum yum yum.

Have fun making these ojas-bulding, sweet, ayurvedic & yogic treats. Make your kitchen a sacred space by taking a few slow breaths before you start, keep your hands clean and avoid distractions. Enjoy the process.

Sending love

Elizabeth

I love food. Always been a foodie and always had the stomach of a lion. Whenever my family ate out, if there were leftovers (as long as they were veggie) i’d finish them!

South Indian breakfast on the streets of Bangalore

I can still eat a lot, but years of overeating has had a direct effect on how I digest things (physically and emotionally).

For years I was told I was so skinny and that I should eat more. My recent realization is that eating more doesn’t change that. Yes I gained a small amount of weight around my mid-drift but generally always felt bloated and “dull”.

I found that i’d go to food for most situations. Hunger, boredom, stress, during my menstrual cycle and when watching movies. According to ayurveda and yoga only one of these is correct- when we are actually hungry. Our body will tell us by signs of feeling empty and rumbly in the tummy.

How i’m healing (it’s an ongoing journey) my digestion and ways you can too (if you fancy)

  • Try to stick to 3 main meals a day, avoid heavy snacking in between
  • Make mealtimes sacred/ a meditation by taking a moment to give thanks before you eat and enjoy each mouthful.
  • Listening to your body for signs of being full: Gas/burping, bloating etc
A balanced meal that includes all the tastes: rice, dal, sauteed carrots and cabbage, raw sauerkraut and a date truffle.
  • Avoid excessive dry and raw foods. (sorry raw vegans, I feel ya, I love all those salads and juices but they are hard to digest especially in the cold weather. Everything in balance is the key. If you live in the tropics go for it)
  • Try eating your main meal at lunchtime, keeping breakfast and dinner slightly lighter.
  • Make a tea from cumin coriander and fennel seeds and sip slowly between meals
  • Start the day with sipping hot water to wake up the digestion and cleasne away undigested food from the day before (add a slice of ginger for extra zing if you fancy)
  • Go for a gentle stroll after meals to kickstart the digestive process (100 steps around the house is enough)
  • Avoid overeating, bingeing or mindless eating. (we’ve all been there) This can initially feel great but within half an hour you may feel sluggish, bloated and regret it.
  • Avoid eating late at night, its ideal to eat your last meal before 7pm (where possible)
  • Apanasana- (see picture below) reclined knees to chest pose (at least an hour after a meal never straight after eating) literally means wind relieving pose and is helpful for bloating.

It’s an ongoing journey of learning, listening and caring, as is life.

What Is Ayurveda?

1st March 2021

I talk about it a lot and it’s a big part of my life, but what is it?

If we break the word Ayurveda down, Ayur means life and Veda means knowledge or science. Put those two words back together again and we have “the science of life”.

It’s an integrated system that originated in India over 5,000 years ago, that includes all components of life, physical, emotional, mental and spiritual.

I like to look at it as my holistic toolkit for everything in my life.

Ayurveda looks at each person as a unique individual. What I love about it, is there’s not a one size fits all/ quick fix. It is a holistic lifestyle that deeply nourishes the mind, body and soul.

The 5 Elements:

According to Ayurveda everything in the universe, living or nonliving, consists of 5 elements:
Ether, Air, Fire, Water and Earth. Everything consists of these 5 elements, us as humans, the chair you’re sitting on, plants, animals, the food we eat and even every single cell and atom in your body.

Ether
Ether is space. In the human body you find spaces or empty areas and outside of us wherever there is space, that is ether.

Air
Air is the element that causes all movement. It’s ether in movement. Every muscle movement, heart pulsation, lung movement, bowel movements and every movement of the nervous system – is possible because of the air element. Also, when looking at the mind, every thought is a movement. And every time an object moves in space outside of us is also the air element.

Fire
Fire is responsible for heat and all transformation in the body. It’s the digestive fire, transforming food into body cells, but it’s also your intellectual capacity, transforming information into knowledge and wisdom. It’s responsible for your body temperature, your eyesight and all metabolic processes in your body. You can find the fire element in the sunshine, gas, fire, lava.

Water
The water element manifests as all bodily secretions, juices, saliva, mucus and plasma. The water element makes sure that the functioning of all bodily tissues, systems and organs go smoothly. You can also find water outside of us in streams rivers the ocean rain and dew.

Earth
The earth element gives the body structure and stability. Without it we would collapse. It’s our bones, muscles, cartilage, tendons, skin, hair and nails. Think outside and around us, earth is our stable foundation without it we cannot build homes or walk steadily.

Within our own unique mind body soul make-up we each have a combination of dominant elements.

Some of us have really strong bones and muscles, while others have a much smaller bodily structure. Some of us have a really strong digestive fire and can eat a lot without gaining any weight, while others have a much slower metabolism.
This is the reason why we are all different and we all have different needs to stay healthy and feel happy with our lives. The composition of these 5 elements not only determine how our body looks and works, but also how our mind works, what our dreams are and what our emotional tendencies are.

Doshas

According to Ayurveda these 5 elements form three basic body-mind types otherwise known as doshas:

Vata, Pitta and Kapha.

These dosha’s also consist of all the 5 elements, but are predominant in 2
elements.
Vata = ether + air [movement and communication in the body and mind]
Pitta = fire + water [transformations in the body and mind]
Kapha = water + earth [structure and stability in the body and mind]

Ayurveda is such an in-depth system that works.

My 1-1 teaching is based on the foundations of Ayurveda and sees you deeply as you are, meeting you where you are at.

If you are keen to know more, book in a 1-1 session to get to know “you” better.

Get in touch here: contactus@yogawithelizabeth.yoga

Retreat at Home

14th January 2021

What does the word retreat mean to you?

Have you ever attended one?

What if i told you you could retreat right where you are whenever you wanted?

I have created a beautifully presented e-guide which supports you on how to do just that!

I’ve been working on this for a long time and i’m so excited to share with you.

My new e-guide provides you with ways to enhance your retreat at home. Filled with over 60 pages of worksheets, exercises, recipes and beautiful pictures. 

Retreats have been a big part of my life for a while now, I’ve taught on many, attended many and had all sorts of wonderful experiences. My NEW BOOK; Retreat At Home, takes you on your own retreat journey that can be created wherever you are and whenever you want.

Within this e-guide you will find:

  • What a retreat is
  • How to prepare for a retreat
  • A retreat schedule to follow
  • Recipes for meal times
  • Activities
  • Reflection exercises
  • …AND SO MUCH MORE!

Available to download as a pdf on your digital device or print off and use as a workbook.

Invest in your well-being and purchase a copy by clicking here

Hi everyone! How’s your lymphatic system?

First up if you’re thinking..”my what system?“that’s ok. A lot of people are unsure on what this actually is..

The lymphatic system is made up of nodes, ducts and fluid. It runs close to your skin, it helps remove products of metabolism and serves as a pathway for the cells of the immune system.

In short it’s closely linked to our immunity, health and happiness. It is especially important in times of stress on the body and mind, so if you’ve been unwell, are recovering from surgery or are burnt out, some therapeutic yoga focusing on the lymphatic system may be of benefit.

In general yoga is good for keeping the lymph actively working, here are some simple and gentle things you can do to get the lymphatic system moving:

  • Reach your arms up in the air and take a few breaths then relax them back down

Elevate your lower body with props and take some slow deep breaths:

Standing side bends.

  • Plant your feet firming on the earth, slightly apart.
  • Reach one arm up in the air. Stay here if that feels enough or if you would like reach up and over to the side.
  • Breathe in to come back upright and relax the arm down.

Always listen to your body and if something doesn’t feel right stop. Enjoy moving slowly and safely.

#gentleyoga#therapeuticyoga#lymphatichealth#lymph#stressrelief#yogaforstress#yogaforcancerrecovery#yogaforhealth#bodysystems#melksham#yogainwiltshire#onlineyogateacher#yogaforlymphaticsystem#surgeryrecovery

Our mind and bodies are made up of elements just like the world around us. Learn how to access simple hand gestures designed to help with overall well-being.

The elements in each finger.

In Yoga and Ayurveda (yoga’s sister science: the knowledge of life) it is explained that we have each of the five elements within our body and through the changing seasons, lifestyle, diet and personality we can have more of one or two (dominant).

One way to balance elements within the body is by practicing something called mudras. A mudra is a gesture/shape made with the body, a hasta mudra is a gesture with the hands.

In the picture above I’ve labelled each finger to show which elements they represent. This is the same for both hands.

Before practising any mudras, make sure your hands and the joints are warmed up by trying the following exercises:

Warm up those joints

  • curl fingers into a fist and squeeze, then open and spread fingers wide (repeat a few times)
  • You can try clapping to remove any stagnation (clapping also evokes joy, think about when you usually clap!)
  • Rub palms of hands together for 10 seconds or more

Mudras

Anjali mudra/ Atmanjali mudra (gesture of prayer/gratitude)

This gesture brings harmony, balance, silence and peace.

Bring both palms together in front of the chest, gently press/rest the thumbs into the chest. Take 10 slow breaths and concentrate on your hands, when you feel ready to finish gently bow your head towards your heart and take a moment to think of something you are grateful for.

This mudra makes it into most yoga classes as a lot of teachers use it as a greeting to open or close a session. In terms of the elements, it symbolizes a balance and a coming together of/ union of all the elements. All fingers gather together at one central point. It also helps to balance the left and right hemispheres of the brain. A great mudra for balance, inner reverence and a great opportunity to give thanks.

Chin mudra/ Jnana mudra The gesture of knowledge/consciousness

Supports memory concentration, relaxes the mind, encourages a sense of grounding.

Bring the tip of your thumb and first fingers together, all other fingers stretch outwards slightly. Relax the back of your hands on your knees, close of soften your eyes and focus on your finger tips.

This mudra brings together the fire (thumb) and air (index finger) elements bringing a balance to the mind and is said to connect us to our higher self. For that reason this mudra is used a lot in meditation practices.

There are many mudras that can help with your overall well-being if you’d like to know more or if I can be of any service to you personally then do get in touch 🙂

Have a blessed day

Hridaya Mudra

3rd April 2020

HRIDAYA MUDRA (heart gesture)♥️

It is written in the ancient yoga texts that performing this gesture diverts flow of prana (energy) from the hands to the heart. The heart is the centre of emotion.
HRIDAYA MUDRA can help to release pent up emotions and unburden the heart. It can be useful during emotional conflict or crisis. – simple, safe and easy, even in acute situations!
.
BENEFITS that you may feel from this practice:
– A release or calming of emotions
– Giving yourself time to process and deal with emotions
– Energy/ sensations in your hands/arms/chest
– A slightly clearer head
– A pick me up/ energiser/ recharger (could replace your afternoon coffee with it?)
.
TO PRACTICE:
Place your index fingers at the root of your thumbs, join the tips of your middle and ring fingers to the tips of your thumbs. The little finger remains straight.
Place the hands on your knees or lap, palms upward.
Sit up tall and take a few breaths
Close your eyes if you like.
Try to relax your body slightly.
Focus your attention on the sensation of energy moving from your hands up towards your heartspace.
Stay for as long as you feel comfortable, try for a minute or two and see how it feels. (If this position isn’t available on your body you can use the wonderful power of your imagination)