Here we are! We will be at the Ithaca Farmers Market tomorrow, Saturday, April 29. Come down to Steamboat Landing and say hello! We can't wait to see you.
As our season begins, we think about how to best nourish our bodies in the transitionary season of spring. In macrobiotic philosophy, Spring's element is wood. While Western imagines wood as solid, stiff, and unchanging, this Eastern element of wood actually signifies growth and fluidity instead. This wood has less to do with thick trunks and inanimate lumber, and more to do with sapling energy, the growing tip, and the swelling bud. We think of this as the Season of the Sprout, a time of transition when seed becomes seedling, and the sap once again flows beneath the bark of the trees.
Similarly, our tendons and ligaments often seem static and unchangeable to us, especially after the cold dryness of winter, but just like this movement of sap, bringing water and nutrients from the roots up through the growing tips of the trees, the flavors of spring stimulate movement of water within our bodies, lubricating the connective tissue. This is a time to awaken these deep, seemingly static parts of ourselves, both physically and emotionally, and to allow them room to be fluid, changeable, and growing. This is a time to allow our winter dreams to take shape.
Though the temperatures are already climbing toward the 80's, our bodies still have the work of spring to do: awakening the ligaments and tendons, cleansing our livers, burning out the fat stores that have kept us warm all winter, and stimulating movement and new growth. The flavor that most helps us in this work is the sour flavor. This sourness is light, green, and stimulating above all. The tartness of sorrel and lemon first stimulate our salivary glands and then our livers, helping us to purge fat. It isn't always so obvious, though; barley and wheat are considered to have this sour, stimulating characteristic. We've added freekeh, a heritage wheat, sprouted and full of growing energy, to our menu this week.
Above all, Spring is a season of transition. Seed becomes sprout and bud becomes flower before our very eyes, and much of the bounty of our local forests are only available for a short time. Our menu this week features some of these ephemeral spring plants that reveal themselves before the trees leaf out fully in our local forests. Ramps (or wild leeks) and the tightly furled fiddlehead ferns are some of the offerings the spring forest has to give. The intensely sour French sorrel in our garden is also at its most tender and delicate at this time of year, and we used it this week to make a bright, literally mouthwatering sauce for our ramps, fiddleheads, and asparagus.
We hope you are nourished, stimulated, and refreshed by this light and tasty spring meal!
Rice and Beanly Yours,
The Macro Mamas
|| Menu for April 29th, 2017 ||
Brown Rice with Sprouted Freekeh & Sprouted Mung Bean
Chickpeas with Nettles and Lemon Zest
Roasted Asparagus, Fiddleheads, & Ramps with French Sorrel Sauce
Kale & Red Cabbage with Toasted Pepitas
Sweet Potato & Rutabaga Gratin
Cabbage & Kohlrabi Pressed Salad with Pickled Shiso, Dill, & Umeboshi
Field Greens with Lemon Poppyseed Dressing
|| Desserts ||
Carrot Cake with Candied Walnuts
Lemon Tart with Almond-Oat Crust (GF)
Apple-Rhubarb Crisp with Dried Fruit (GF)
Heavenly Tapioca (GF)
Hazelnut Chocolate Mousse (GF)
Lemon & Mango Parfait (GF)
Chocolate-Chocolate Cupcakes (GF)
Cardamom Cupcakes with Coconut-Rosewater Icing
Orange Chocolate Chip Cookies
Lime-Coconut Sandies (GF)