Now winter’s truly set in, and spring and summer still seem so very far away, you could probably do with a little sunshine or warmth to help thaw yourself out. If you need a little pick-me-up to help you deal with the darker days of February, the word you’re looking for is balance. Stemming from Taoist philosophy, the Chinese believed that the balance of yin and yang in the body – a concept where everything in the universe is made up of two opposing but complementary forces – can be achieved by eating the right foods. Indeed, what better way to achieve balance, to even out the scale of frigid temperatures and frostbitten fingers, than with cosy dinners inside with your loved ones? Read on for the recipes Mirjam Leslie-Pringle, our in-house food expert, heartily recommends.
1. Super bowl with quinoa and sweet potato
Your preparation and cooking method can also be separated into either yin or yang, and grilling is most definitely a yang-style prep. Served with grilled zucchini, oven-roasted sweet potatoes and a lovely Asian-inspired sweet and sour dressing, this warming bowl will keep your energy up on cold and dreary days.
2. Roasted veggie curry
Another dish that’s perfect to help warm you up from the inside is the steamed eggplant and chickpea curry. Steam the eggplant in a steam basket, stir-fry the peppers, ginger and garlic – delicious yang ingredients – and balance out the plate with naan bread, yoghurt and coriander.
3. Cauliflower and sweet potato masala
In Indian cooking, the ancient concept of Ayurveda considers spices as heating or cooling the body, which is quite similar to the yin and yang theory of eating warm or cold foods to balance the body. This cauliflower and sweet potato masala dish contains both root vegetables and spices to “heat” the body and keep the fire going in winter.
4. Banana bread with cheesecake
For all your chilly-weather sweets needs, you can take cosiness to a whole other level with our banana bread with cheesecake and salted caramel. It’s a 3-1 sure-fire way to drive away any winter blues.