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Sweet potato masala curry | shishito | mint | yogurt

I've been feeling a little under the weather lately as the seasons have been shifting from winter to rainy spring. It's the onset of allergy season and people are gettin' cold like symptoms left and right! Maybe the time change for some of you has also funked you up - I've been going to bed super early and waking up before sunrise! But so it is for now :)

There's a reason for all of these funky feelings according to Ayurveda. As we transition from winter to spring, our kapha energy starts to melt off quickly. This is the energy that has kept you warm and stable all winter (kapha dosha is responsible for giving us stability and strong immune systems), but with that first change in temperature, Kapha gets super aggravated and starts to 'melt' off, which means all that stability will be rapidly trying to exit your body, giving you congestion, fatigue, and an overall feeling of heaviness. In order to support this process (think of it like a body spring cleaning), start shifting your diet away from heavy sweet and salty foods to bitter, pungent, and astringent foods. These three tastes help to pacify the kapha dosha by scraping our channels to break up and remove the congestion, and giving you more energy.

So when I think of these three tastes, I think spices, which defaults me to curry. I ate a TON of curry during my studies in Kerala, but they were curries with an Ayurvedic twist - full of digestive spices like cumin, coriander, and fennel seed instead of being full of hot peppers you typically see in curries (which can be not so great when temperatures reach 100 degrees Fahrenheit during the day). I added Japanese shishito peppers because they are mildly spiced and my body was craving a little heat. They are definitely not necessary for the recipe, so up to you!

Here's what you need:

Utensils on hand:

rice pot

sauce pan for curry

mixing bowl


spice grinder


1C raw jade rice washed


2 tsp turmeric powder

1T + 2T ghee (or high heat oil like canola, refined coconut oil)

1.5 lb sweet potato - peeled and cut into 3/4 inch cubes (doesn’t have to be exactly that measurement, but try to keep all your squares the same size for even cooking time)

2 tsp coriander Seeds

4 black peppercorns

1/2 tsp fennel seeds

1/4 cup grated coconut

1 inch piece peeled fresh ginger roughly chopped

3 garlic cloves peeled and roughly chopped

2 tsp cumin seeds

1T black mustard seed

2T mung daal (optional)

2T organic tomato paste

2T canola oil

1 large onion sliced thinly

1C shishito peppers

Salt and lemon to taste

1/4 cup yogurt (optional)

Fresh mint sliced thinly

For the Rice:

  1. Wash rice and strain using a fine mesh sieve

  2. Heat rice over medium heat with a pinch of salt and 1T ghee

  3. Add 1 3/4 boiling water to the pot, let mixture boil, then reduce to simmer and leave covered for 25 minutes

  4. Remove from heat, let stand another 10 minutes, then uncover and fluff with a fork

For the Curry:

  1. Place turmeric powder and sweet potato in a large mixing bowl and cover with hot water (this allows the sweet potato to start cookin’ while you are making the curry to cut down on total cook time!)

  2. Dry roast coriander seed, fennel seed, and black peppercorn in small pan until fragrant. Let cool and grind using a spice grinder or mortar and pestle

  3. Over medium high heat, lightly fry cumin seeds, black mustard seed, and moong daal in remaining 2T ghee

  4. While spices are frying, blend garlic, ginger and coconut together with about 1/2C water in a blender

  5. Once spices have become fragrant (black mustard seeds will start to sputter), add in garlic / ginger / coconut paste and fry until all water evaporates and mixture turns slightly golden. Add large pinch of salt and remaining spice powder

  6. Add tomato paste and incorporate into the mix. If there’s not enough moisture and things are starting to look dry, just add a little water

  7. Add canola oil, then sauté onions with another few pinches of salt and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes

  8. Add in sweet potato and coat using the turmeric soaking water (using about 4 cups) and let cook covered for 20 minutes

  9. Add shishito peppers and cook for another 5-10 minutes until sweet potatoes are cooked but not mushy

  10. Transfer to serving bowl and top with yogurt, lemon, salt, and freshly chopped mint!

Don't forget to give yourself a mini steam facial during the process! #multitasking

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