It has been DORMANT.

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Photo Credit: http://www.pinterest.com

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It’s a dormant growing season at the moment, in New York at least. And frankly, this blog has been pretty dormant. The definition of dormant is:

In terms of flora, many trees lie dormant during winter, i.e. not growing, just like seeds remain dormant until they are given the stimulus to grow (soil, water, sunlight).

The reason I shared that little ditty is because the sentence referring to “stimulus to grow” hit home with me. And so did the photo above,“Take time to Live Life.”

Why? The one thing I promised myself that I wouldn’t DO is blog unless I felt strongly about something, enthusiastic and jumping for joy about it (i.e. like when I have a cupcake in my hand) or completely inspired. Otherwise, writing to just write is not my kind of gig. Do I dare say I had a twinge of writer’s block? Hence, that’s why it’s been awhile. 

p.s. I AM NOT STOPPING THE BLOG, only I’ll be away for a few weeks. 

So what’s been going on? 

Actually, a whole lot! There have been many positives things going on in my life which have taken me away from the computer screen and dealing more with people. Well, that’s cool cause I like people. If you didn’t notice, I’m a people person.

Duh, I teach yoga and talk about food when I can. 

So, I have some cool stuff to share right before I LEAVE. 

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LEAVE?

Yes, I’m heading to INDIA for a 2 week yoga retreat with my mentor and teacher Mona Anand from ISHTA yoga (where I trained and continue my studies). I simply said,”YES” when asked,”Would you like to come as an assistant teacher?” Who would say NO? Well, I guess some would. We’re headed to Mumbai, Jaipur, Rajasthan and Goa. I’ll be away from March 18th-31st! Yipee! Spicy food and UV water filtration here I come! 

TEACHING YOGA: 

I teach yoga. I love it, it inspires me and making others FEEL GOOD simply puts a smile on my face. On an exciting note, I’m teaching it more and more. I’ve joined the team at Equinox Fitness and Pilates and More (aside from ISHTA yoga) and am nothing less then thrilled to share the love, passion and a few backbends with new students.

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Yup! Photo Credit: http://www.pinterest.com (you can find it on my pinterest account!).

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WHAT’S NEXT?

Well, other then the fact that I’ll be dodging malaria and typhoid in India and at the same time embracing the culture, beauty, food, daily yoga and workshops! Perhaps some Indian cuisine will enter this blog, or more on Yoga, but in the meantime:

I wish you all, my lovely followers, a lovely day, and a warm welcome to SPRING in the next few weeks. SEE YOU SOON!

As some of you know, music fuels my soul, it’s in the genetic code if I had to guess. So here’s a few songs that have been inspiring me lately, whether it be for a long run, sitting peacefully and practicing yoga, cooking, or creating a playlist for a class I hope you ENJOY!

Love me some citizen cope. Went to a live concert recently. Awesomeness.

Javier Colon, gorgeous voice, huge talent. Old Cindy Lauper song.

That’s right, Flo Rida and Sia. Going for a Run? This song gets played at least 3 times.

Walela. Found them from my teacher Jean Koerner. Beautiful, Peaceful, perfect for a yoga class.

Foster the People. Just love this song. That’s all I got.

SO, if you’re a fellow blogger, what keeps you INSPIRED?

If you’ LOVE MUSIC, got a favorite song you’d like to share?

-Shanti (Peace)

JEN

Spinach meets Chutney meets Curry.


Who needs a quick dinner? Well, I did….and I often do. Just like most of you, I don’t have all the time in the world to be the goddess (or god) I’d like to be in the kitchen and since my new schedule has me busy a few nights a week (teachin yoga, not out partying-in case you were wondering) I’ve had to whip out some of favorite recipes that are “feasible in minutes.”(I love the word feasible). So limpy wilted greens got a makeover today.

Salads are simple, and that’s a WIN in my book. In case you haven’t met me, I don’t preach to the choir here but THIS salad did kind of rock and blow my belly up with fiber. I know the word salad sends the thoughts to 1) ugh, lettuce for dinner? or 2) YES, I love salad and anything beyond iceberg lettuce rocks.

Of course tossing in cupcake pieces wouldn’t be wise, but perhaps more veggies. Yes? It’s all about the add-ins anyway. Start with your base, then load that bad boy up with color, flavor, and texture.

Don’t worry, this is not a popeye salad with some fake italian or thousand island dressing on it.

What is thousand island dressing anyway?

So this particular salad has a unique twist to it. I used “chutney.”

What the heck is chutney you ask?

Well, it’s (pronounced: chut-nee) and according to the Food Lover’s Companion (total must have for the food geek), it originates from the East Indian word Chatni, and is a spicy condiment that contains fruit, vinegar, sugar and spices.

It’s texture ranges from chunky to smooth and the degrees of spiciness also range from mild (you sweat a tad bit) to hot (you likely lose weight from eating it-joking, but you catch my drift). It’s used as an accompaniment to curry dishes but can also be used as a spread or served with cheese. Mmmm, cheese.

Buying: You can find it in the condiment section or ethnic food section of your grocery store. Open it, then refrigerate it.

Anyway here it is…it’s simple, palatable and filling. Maybe a little spicy. What more do you need?

RECIPE

Spinach salad with Curry Chutney Dressing

Serves: 2-4

Time: Like 5 minutes…seriously. (You could do a few push-ups and lunges in that time).

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag (5 oz.) of fresh Spinach (or any other green)
  • Baby Bella mushrooms (optional, I had some on hand)
  • 1/4-1/2 cup chicpeas
  • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger (optional, totally forgot to do this!)

For the Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup chopped green onion
  • Tabasco sauce ( to taste-optional)
  • 2/3 cup peanuts (toasted is always better)
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried mustard
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries (optional, or raisins)
  • 1/4 cup chutney (you could make your own-I’d decrease the amount of sugar)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (or less)
  • 1/3 cup white vinegar
  • couple teaspoons of a sweetener (optional-honey, sugar, maple syrup)

The process:

  • Chop the scallions then set aside.
  • Toast the peanut for ~5 minutes in a skillet on medium heat ( do not burn!)
  • Combine all the salad dressing ingredients in a small bowl (except spinach, mushrooms and chicpeas).
  • Mix it all up.

I'd lick that spoon...yup.

  • Then toss it all with the salad greens (cause they’re now in love)

SERVE and ENJOY!

-Jen

I’m kinda genius thoughts:

  • Mix your greens up. Got kale on hand? Use that too!
  • Add other goodies to the salad, try other dried fruits like turkish apricots, or fresh fruits like Anjou Pears.
  • Serve this salad alongside the Morroccan Millet stew for a very colorful meal.
  • BONUS READ: We all love Dr. Oz, well I think most people at least trust him. So here’s an article about the benefits of curry and the link to Alzheimer’s. So add curry dishes 1-2 times/week and you’re doing the bod some good.

Have you used Chutney? Got a favorite use for spinach?