Recipe: Jasmine Hemsley’s brain-boosting veg masala
‘My friends at the Alliance of Natural Health work to promote sustainable approaches to healthcare. Little did I know when I told the organisation’s founder Rob Verkerk, PhD about my interest in Ayurveda that he too is a fan.
‘This is Rob’s East by West Ayurveda-style recipe for improving mental clarity, full of antioxidant and nutrient-rich veggies and nuts. The recipe includes creamed coconut or whole organic double cream, to give sweetness and aid the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins and bioactive compounds in the herbs.
‘The recipe includes two Ayurvedic herbal powders – Shankhpushpi and Brahmi. These herbs aid brain health, cognition and memory.’
Mostly Vata: Favour green beans instead of broccoli
You will need
• 1tbsp ghee
• ½tsp Shankhpushpi powder (optional)
• ½tsp Brahmi powder (optional)
• ½tsp ground turmeric
• ¼tsp asafoetida
• 5mm piece of fresh ginger, grated
• 1 red chilli, finely chopped
• Sea salt, to taste
• 200g baby spinach leaves
• 4 fresh tomatoes, skinned and deseeded, coarsely chopped
• 350g broccoli florets
• 300g green beans, chopped into 2.5cm lengths
• 115ml double cream, crème fraîche or creamed coconut
1. Gently melt the ghee in a frying pan over a low heat and stir in the Shankhpushpi and Brahmi powders, if using, with the other ground spices. Add the ginger and chilli along with a pinch of sea salt. Heat and stir for 2 minutes over a medium heat.
2. Slowly add the spinach over a medium-high heat and stir until wilted. Add the tomatoes, broccoli and beans, then place the lid on the pan and simmer for 3-4 minutes until the beans and broccoli are tender.
3. Stir through the cream and heat for a couple of minutes. Remove from heat. Add salt to taste.
4. Transfer to a serving dish, drizzle with lemon juice and sprinkle with the almonds, walnuts and chopped coriander. Serve with basmati rice.