So why a Yogi’s Lunch? Simply because that is who I am. Also, lunch is when I get to make food just for me because my daughter is off to school or camp or wherever her day takes her.

Currently she is a tween and in that phase of liking a very limited number of food items with some branching out, but not totally into the land of food where she will try lots of new things.

Yoga means union, so in my pursuit of yoga, I eat a certain way. I do not advocate a particular eating lifestyle, but I choose to eat what is right for my body in this moment.

One day I might need a lot of food, other days a little fruit or a smoothie may be all that is required. Some days I need something that feels more substantial, so I incorporate more grain, other days I need lightness so I choose salad, fruit and greens.

As I become more in tune with my human system, more in union, I learn more about what to eat and not.

From an Ayurvedic perspective, I need cooling foods generally so I tend to eat a lot of these: ash gourd, cucumber, coconut, ghee, lemon and lime juice, cumin, coriander, fenugreek, dates, milk and yogurt or curd. For digestion I include heating foods such as pineapple and papaya, ginger, honey and sesame seeds.

I follow guidelines for a high pranic diet, a diet high in foods that positively impact prana. A high pranic diet increases or generates more life force, more energy, or ‘prana’ in your system. More on that to come.

What I don’t eat:
onion, garlic, eggplant, hot chili peppers, asafoetida (hing), meat

What I limit:
eggs, dairy, potato, tomato, wheat and other grain

What I have rarely:
caffeine and other nervous stimulants like sugar and chocolate

What I do eat:
plenty of plants, nuts, seeds and legumes for protein

This leaves tons of room to play with tastes, textures and ingredients. I choose as much local or organic food as possible. That said, I also don’t trap myself into “I only eat these things” or “I only eat this way” as my understanding of how my human machine works is ever evolving.

I hope you enjoy my recipes and that this helps you in your own journey with food and learning to feed your own machine – Namaste!

Cucumber Salad

This is a great summer meal that is surprisingly filling and light at the same time. It has asian flavorings and a nice crunch.

The cucumber and red bell pepper are local and organic from Michigan State University (MSU) Student Organic Farm CSA box; Michigan honey from Foods For Living.

Serving Size: Makes 1 large salad that feeds 1 person as a meal or 2-3 as a side salad.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Make Ahead: yes, but best fresh!

Ingredients:

1 large cucumber* chopped
1⁄4 red bell pepper diced
1 TBS black sesame seeds
1 small handful raw almonds

Dressing:
1⁄2 of a lime juiced
1 tsp dark sesame oil
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp honey

Directions:

Chop or slice the cucumber and dice the bell pepper and toss together in a bowl.
Whisk the dressing ingredients together until combined and drizzle over the salad.
Top with sesame seeds and almonds.

*I used thin slicing cucumbers. Less seeds reduce prep time and are easier to digest. You can use any type you like however. English cucumbers are also nice as you don’t have to worry about seeds.