Via: Chalkboard Magazine
Photo Credit: Jolene Hart
When it comes to your beauty, spring is the time to amp up the natural detoxification happening in your body, support optimal digestion and nourish your skin from the inside out with spring beauty foods. After eating plate after plate of warming, cooked meals during the winter, spring greets us with a crop of delicate, crisp, green beauty foods like leafy greens, asparagus, and endive.
Overall, you won’t find as many sweet or starchy foods at the farmer’s market in the springtime, which is nature’s way of resetting our palates, cleansing our bodies and
reducing a little extra weight that may have accumulated over the winter.
To ensure that you get the most from spring’s beautifying green harvest, add a daily serving of fermented foods like raw sauerkraut or kimchi to your diet, as well as healthy fats like avocado, raw seeds or a drizzle of olive oil at every meal. When you have the opportunity, opt for more artichokes, asparagus and dandelion greens for their cleansing properties.
Below you’ll find a recipe and in ingredient highlights for what I think is a wonderful ideal spring meal. This light, comforting soup is nourishing to your all-important digestive system, while the accompanying salad features some of my fave beauty foods, chosen for their ability to support detox and glowing skin.
ASPARAGUS: Eat it now for detox support and glutathione production. Asparagus boosts our production of glutathione, sometimes called the body’s master antioxidant since it slows aging and protects mitochondrial function.
ENDIVE: For detox support, smooth skin, and ovarian health. Endives deliver a dose of vitamin A that your skin loves for smoothness and glow. And a detox-boosting phytochemical in endives is also a key supporter of ovarian health.
GARLIC: For digestive health and wrinkle-blocking powers. Garlic supports a healthy gut and reduced inflammation while it helps block collagen breakdown in the skin.
LEAFY GREENS: For cell renewal and repair. Greens (think spring varieties like arugula, dandelion greens and watercress) nourish skin with a powerful combination of vitamins C and A for a clear, smooth, youthful and glowing complexion.
LEMONS: For detox support and anti-aging vitamin C. Highly alkaline lemon juice contributes to a healthy gut and overall pH balance, while delivering a powerful dose of collagen-building vitamin C. Don’t miss out on the bioflavonoids in lemon pith and rind that support lymph flow or detox support and anti-aging vitamin C.
For The Soup:
1 tsp organic grass-fed butter or ghee
2 leeks, whites and crisp green parts only, chopped
handful of fiddle heads, cleaned and rinsed with stem removed (if available)
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 oz cremini mushrooms, chopped *
4 oz shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and chopped *
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp tamari
1 tbs apple cidre vinegar
6 cups/48 oz broth (your preference of vegetable or bone broth)
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
* Or substitute with another variety that has been locally grown. Even something simple like button mushrooms are fine.
In a large soup pot, melt butter and sauté leeks until soft and golden, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and mushrooms and cook until mushrooms reduce, about 5 minutes more. Add broth and thyme leaves, discarding the stems and heat to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper and serve.
For The Salad
4 handfuls spring greens, like arugula, mache, spinach or dandelion, torn (or chopped if needed)
2 endives, roughly chopped
1 bunch of asparagus, about 16 stalks, tough ends removed, roughly chopped
juice of 1 lemon
2 to 3 tbsp of olive oil
1 tsp fresh thyme and/or oregano leaves minced
1 tbsp walnut oil (or grapeseed if you have nut allergies)
generous pinch of cayenne pepper
1/2 cup lightly toasted pumpkin seeds (omit if you have nut allergies)
1/2 fresh feta or goats cheese from your farmer's market (omit if you don't do dairy)
sea salt to taste
In a large bowl, toss greens and endive. Divide into 4 portions and top with asparagus. In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and salt and pepper. Spoon over salad and serve alongside soup.