The season of autumn, with its winds and changeability, can aggravate vata dosha creating feelings of stress, worry and anxiousness. This nourishing stew combines a variety of orange root vegetables, with chana dal*, healing spices and smoky vegan sausage in a deeply grounding dish, which makes you feel like you’ve been wrapped in a great big Autumn hug from Mother Earth!
Some people (especially those with a vata constitution) find legumes (beans and lentils) hard to digest, with pain, bloating and gas resulting. If this is you, try these tips:
- eat legumes only one or two times a week
- always buy your own, canned ones usually cause more problems
- rinse really well, then soak for as long as you can – overnight in a fridge is great, or 4 hours if you can’t do overnight.
- cook in plenty of fresh water, until they are really soft
- combine with turmeric and other Indian spices to aid digestion.
- start with mung dal, which is very gentle on the stomach and used as a healing food in Ayurveda, then when you can tolerate that, work your way up in size, so red lentils next, then green / brown lentils, then split peas / chana dal, finally working your way up to whole beans.
Even if it’s not Autumn in your part of the world right now, you can still make this stew as these vegetables are often available year round. Feel free to mix up the vegetables, but try to stick with the orange/yellow colour, full of Vitamin A to support your bone health, improve your vision and boost your immune system.
I hardly ever eat processed foods, but I do love the big chunks of vegan sausage in this. You could also use marinated tofu or tempeh if you prefer.
I served this with shredded collard greens, pan-fried in a little olive oil, with salt, garlic, chillies and curry leaves. You could use kale or any other firm leafy green vegetable.