Recipe Box: Cucumber Seaweed Salad

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It’s the last days of summer here in Oklahoma. Though technically we’ve passed the equinox and are fully into fall on the calendar, there’s always this lingering heat the last few weeks of September and early days of October here.  Plus, I’m packing up to leave for Malibu next week, where I’ll be cooking for a 4 day retreat by the ocean and I hear they’ve been having a big heat wave. Each year we do this retreat, we always wind up playing on the beach when the tide goes out and swimming in the ocean after rubbing our bodies down in warming oil for a group abhyanga session. It’s this interesting juxtaposition for me of calling in fall and preparing for winter ahead with conscious foods and self-care, while simultaneously chasing the endless summer my heart desires.

4i8a9029As an ode to an endless summer and the heat that builds up with it, this cucumber seaweed salad is a simple and satisfying recipe for reducing pitta that can been seen in an overheated body and mind this time of year. It’s both light and refreshing on its own, but pairs well with brown rice, toasted tofu or poached fish, and big juicy slice of avocado to make it a more balanced meal. The dressing is similar to my chopped kale and seaweed salad I shared last year this time. You can never go wrong with that deliciously satisfying umami taste of ume plum vinegar paired with lime and tamari. While some vinegars and fermented foods should be limited when dealing with a pitta imbalance, the balance of other cooling flavors and ingredients make this dish more soothing than aggravating. Curious to learn more about how the six tastes affect the doshas? Read the series here! 

4i8a9089CUCUMBER SEAWEED SALAD

Salad
1 large cucumber, spiralized
1/2 cup dried wakame, rehydrated
1/2 bunch cilantro, roughly chopped
1/4 cup fresh microgreens or sprouts
1 tsp sesame seeds
1 tsp gomashio

In a small bowl, add the dried wakame and cover with warm water to rehydrate for 5-10 minutes. Once hydrated, drain the excess water off and place the seaweed in a large bowl. Next, use a vegetable spiralizer with the flat blade attachment to process the cucumber into thin sheets of noodles.  Add the cucumber and chopped cilantro to bowl of seaweed. Toss with sesame seeds and dressing. To serve, sprinkle gomashio on top and enjoy by itself or alongside a serving of brown rice and sliced avocado. This also pairs well with fish if you have a good clean source you’re enjoying!

Dressing
1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
2 tbsp ume plum vinegar
2 tbsp tamari
1 lime, juiced

Whisk together all ingredients in a bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Store in an airtight glass container in the fridge until ready to use. Give a good shake before pouring over top salad.

Makes 2-4 servings

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