a spicy curry cauliflower, rice, and kale soup

spicy curry cauliflower, rice, and kale soup perfect for your cozy fall nights | this brown kitchen

spicy curry cauliflower, rice, and kale soup perfect for your cozy fall nights | this brown kitchen

There’s something about that slight dip in temperatures come October that gets everyone into a fall-frenzy. What’s not to love about flannel shirts, crisp mornings with colored leaves, and of course all the pumpkins and gourds starting to make their appearance at the market? With the slightly cooler days, my tastes start turning to warm dishes and heartier flavors to eat while under a big knit blanket. That’s why I’m so excited to welcome “soup season” back into my kitchen with this curry soup filled with some of my favorite ingredients! Making a big pot of soup is one of my favorite weekly things to do this time of year, and I’ve officially discovered my favorite way to make it. By adding all of the broth flavorings into a blender along with a few thickening ingredients at the beginning, you don’t have to worry about handling hot soup later on. All you do is pour the blended broth into a pot, bring it up to a simmer, and then add your mix-ins. Seriously so easy!

spicy curry cauliflower, rice, and kale soup perfect for your cozy fall nights | this brown kitchen

spicy curry cauliflower, rice, and kale soup perfect for your cozy fall nights | this brown kitchen

spicy curry cauliflower, rice, and kale soup perfect for your cozy fall nights | this brown kitchen

After spending many years thinking that the only vegetarian option for soup was a water-y, broth-ladden minestrone, I’ve developed a huge appreciation for a bowl of soup that has different textures and lots of flavor. The texture and heartiness in this soup come from the wild rice and riced cauliflower, while the flavor comes from the always aromatic curry spice blend. So this is the thing about curry powder – if you go into an Indian store and say “can I please get some curry powder?”, the response you’ll get will be “which one?”. There really is no such thing as an actual curry powder, as each dish in Indian cooking has its own unique mix of the spices used to create the blend that you most likely know as “curry powder”. Most grocery stores and spice brands have their own version of a curry powder, so my suggestion is to try your hand at a few different blends, put your taste-testing hat on, and figure out which blend gives you the taste that you like. Some blends are more savory while others have a spicier kick, and if you don’t have a go to mix that you like, try DIY-ing your own.

This is what I put in to my go-to “curry” blend if I’m not just buying a pre-packaged version ::

2 tablespoons of ground cumin seeds
2 tablespoons of ground coriander seeds
2 tablespoons of ground turmeric
1 1/2 tsp ginger powder
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp chili powder

spicy curry cauliflower, rice, and kale soup perfect for your cozy fall nights | this brown kitchen

spicy curry cauliflower, rice, and kale soup perfect for your cozy fall nights | this brown kitchen

This is a more spicy blend for a curry powder, so you can cut the amount of black pepper and chili powder if you don’t like that much heat. If you’re going with a store-bought curry powder, just make sure it contains turmeric in it for this recipe! Spice blends like a curry powder are a powerhouse of health benefits, and adding a tablespoon or so to a soup like this is such an easy way to reap those benefits, especially this time of year. Almost all of the spices in a traditional curry blend can aid in digestion, help your body detox, and consuming pepper and warming spices during the fall and winter will help you fight off those cold weather coughs.

I’m so excited for the weather to keep cooling off and get to experimenting with different ingredient combinations here. The best thing about recipes like this one are how you can totally customize the mix ins based on what you’ve got. I might toss in so cubed sweet potato, other leafy greens, and even try replacing the rice with small pasta next time I make it. Here’s to the fall season, enjoy!

curry cauliflower, rice, and kale soup

ingredients –

for the broth ::

1/2 cup cubed carrots
1/2 cup peeled and cubed yellow potatoes
1/2 cup chopped sweet onion
1 tbsp of curry powder (store-bought or homemade)
1/2 tsp of salt
1/2 tsp of pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp of coconut milk
1 1/2 tbsp honey
juice of 1 lime
4 cups of veggie broth

for the soup ::

1 cup of cubed carrots
4 cups of chopped kale
3 cups of riced cauliflower (you can find this in the frozen section of most grocery stores, or you can make your own!)
1 cup cooked wild rice

  1. add all of the broth ingredients to a high powered blender and blend until smooth. taste and adjust salt as needed.
  2. pour the broth into a large stove top pot and bring up to a simmer.
  3. add the carrots, kale, cauliflower, and rice into the broth and simmer until the carrots are tender and the kale has slightly wilted – this should take about 10 minutes.
  4. pour into soup bowls and serve with warm bread of choice. enjoy!

i drank out of a copper water bottle for two months – and this is what happened.

this brown kitchen and copper H2O, why you should be drinking out of a copper water bottle for ayurvedic health

Y’all! Remember when I posted about wanting to start using a copper water bottle? Well I got my bottle in the mail from Copper H2O and have been using it for the last few weeks. Let me tell you guys, I’m OBSESSED with it. 

With everything I’ve been trying to incorporate into my Ayurvedic lifestyle – eating according to my dosha, working on my yoga flow and mindset with meditation, reading all about holistic healing – drinking out of a copper water bottle was a very welcome and easy addition into my day. Do I need to remind you of some of the benefits? In addition to helping with digestion stimulating your brain, and helping build immunity, drinking out of a copper water bottle can also help you improve your skin. That last part was the benefit I was most looking forward to seeing a difference with, as I’ve always had issues with my skin being even and clear. I’ve tried everything from homemade masks, eating super clean, and trying every wash out there – so this was me trying out another method to help me out.

After getting my bottle, I started drinking out of it throughout the day. Most importantly though, each night I filled up the bottle to let it sit overnight, and then drank from that bottle first thing in the morning. My mom has always said, you should let the water rest for about 6 to 8 hours in copper and then drink it as soon as you wake up. When you let water rest in copper for this amount of time, it allows the water to gain that small amount of ions from the copper to dissolve in it. There’s a more scientific way to look at and explain this – storing water in a copper bottle allows it to become alkaline. The storage in copper is what naturally ionizes water and causes the water to become natural alkaline waterAlkaline water has a higher pH than regular drinking water, which helps it reduce acid in the body – which some studies show is helpful for conditions like acid reflux. Others suggest that drinking alkaline water can help with preventing chronic conditions, slowing the aging process, and helping fight high cholesterol. 

this brown kitchen and copper H2O, why you should be drinking out of a copper water bottle for ayurvedic health

this brown kitchen and copper H2O, why you should be drinking out of a copper water bottle for ayurvedic health

While I can’t personally speak to those findings, I am here to tell you that my skin is looking amazing. I can’t remember a time when my skin tone has been this even, and if I do have a breakout (trust me, we all still get them!), they have been smaller and are healing quicker. I haven’t changed my eating or makeup routine so to see that the addition and change of drinking out of a copper water bottle has made a difference in one aspect of my life has been incredible. I was already a water-fiend before using this bottle – as in I regularly drink around 100oz of water a day – so to see that using a bottle to create more alkaline water and seeing a difference in my skin makes me feel like I’m taking easy and actionable steps to improve my Ayurvedic lifestyle. This is the bottle I have – and I don’t know that I can drink out of anything else!

I’ll update in a few weeks about any other differences I may notice – but so far, using this bottle has been my favorite addition to Ayurvedic practices. (:

*Thanks to Copper H2O for providing me with this copper bottle. I am not a doctor and am not here to treat or diagnose anyone with any health issues they may be facing. I’m just sharing my experiences with Ayurveda, so please consult a health professional before undertaking any major changes to diet, exercise, or health. Thanks!

why you should be drinking out of a copper water bottle

Why you should be drinking out of a copper water bottle - the ayurvedic approach to hydration

Can y’all believe we’re halfway through the year? I’m not quite so sure how time got away from me so fast, but like they say, time flies when you’re having fun. It’s been a crazy few months – and it’s about to get a lot more crazy with my upcoming move – but I’m looking forward to a fresh start and the chance to reflect on all I’ve added to my list. As y’all know, I’ve put a lot of energy and focus into learning about Ayurveda and all the practice has to offer, and I am excited to continue my learning in a new city.

In a conversation I had with one of the amazing boss-lady’s in my life, we talked about how moving to a new place, even just visiting a new place, can change our mindsets and help us gain new perspective. While many people thrive on routine, it can also be hard to stretch our creativity and who we are when we are so set in our routines. Stepping outside of our comfort-zone gives us the chance to reflect on our practices and figure out where we can improve, and I’m excited for the chance to set up in a new city and see things with a fresh set of eyes – especially when it comes to my Ayurvedic learning. I’ve already put together a list of things I want to add to my roster of practices – with the first one being drinking out of copper bottles.

There are a lot of practices that Ayurveda recommends incorporating into our daily lives, some of them being easier than others. While I’ve seen the suggestion of drinking out of copper cups on almost every list of Ayurvedic practices you should be following, I haven’t yet taken the leap to actually do it. You know why? Because carrying around a copper cup just isn’t feasible. My mom kept mentioning to me that I should be drinking out of copper cups which you can find at almost any Indian grocery store, but I never bought one because how easy is it to travel to work and run errands with a cup that doesn’t have a lid? It’s not easy. BUT – lucky for my Instagram-obsessed self, I came across the genius idea of copper water bottles from Copper H2O. Like hello! Why haven’t I seen these before?? I’m so excited to get to work with the Copper H2O team and ACTUALLY cross off one of things on my list of practices I want to incorporate into my Ayurvedic routine.

So why do I want to drink out of a copper water bottle? There are actually a lot of great benefits to doing so* :: 

  1. Improves digestion :: Copper has properties that stimulate peristalsis in our stomachs, which is how our food gets digested in a timely manner. Copper also helps cleanse and detox the stomach by regulating the work of our liver and kidneys which helps in eliminating waste and ensuring the proper absorption of nutrients from food.
  2. Builds immunity :: Did you know that copper has anti-microbial properties? Studies have shown that copper can eliminate the growth of harmful bacteria, which further strengthens the immune system – and a lot of studies have been conducted to determine if using copper cups can help developing nations increase access to clean drinking water (seriously it’s so cool!). Copper can also help aid in various enzymatic processes that promote endothelial growth, or the healing of tissues. I really want to learn more about the science behind the properties of copper and why it’s such an effective way to reduce harmful microbes – so please send me links to studies you might find (:
  3. Supports your thyroid gland :: One commonality of people who suffer from thyroid problems is that they usually have a low level of copper in their bodies. Copper is actually a super important trace mineral in our bodies that helps our thyroid function at its best!
  4. Helps your skin be healthy :: Copper is a huge component of melanin production in our bodies, and it helps in the production of new cells in our skin. Melanin is also important in helping our skin stay safe in the sun, speeding up the healing of wounds, and covering up scars.
  5. Stimulates your brain :: Our brains work by transmitting impulses from one neuron to another from synapses. Each of those synapses are covered with a myalin sheath which helps the flow of those impulses. Copper actually helps in synthesizing phosolipids which form those sheaths and helps those impulses along.

While there are a lot of other benefits that Ayurveda talks about when it comes to utilizing a copper water bottle, these are the ones that really stood out to me – so if you’re interested in more of the benefits, definitely do some research! I’m so excited to get started in using a copper vessel and seeing the benefits, especially with my skin and digestion, which are huge priority health opportunities for me right now. Being that my new job will also be a “work-from-home” gig, anything I can do to keep my brain functioning in tip-top shape is a welcome practice. I’ll be keeping y’all updated on my experience and the benefits I see of using this copper water bottle – so stay tuned! Happy weekend and hello, California!

*I am not a doctor and am not here to treat or diagnose anyone with any health issues they may be facing. I’m just sharing my experiences with Ayurveda, so please consult a health professional before undertaking any major changes to diet, exercise, or health. Thanks!

why I’m drinking coffee just once a week

why you should only drink coffee in certain ways based on your dosha type - ayurveda

I’m so stoked with the reactions and questions I’ve gotten about Ayurveda and how many people have expressed interest in the practice since I started talking about it on Instagram. To be clear – I’m still new at this. I’m still learning about how to most effectively incorporate Ayurveda in my life and if you can learn something along the way too, that’s really what I hope to do! Like I mentioned in this last post about the basics of Ayurveda, one of the first things to do is to figure out your dosha type. Once you figure that out, you can determine the types of foods you should be eating to balance your systems out. I’m a pitta-kapha, leaning highly on the pitta side – so for me, that means focusing on cooling and sweet foods, while limiting and avoiding acidic and hot foods. 

Ayurveda emphasizes opposites as medicine – so if a pitta type is naturally hot and acidic, you want to balance that out by eating things that pacify that with sweeter and astringent things. I’ll be writing up a post about the different types with a condensed list of foods that help balance those types out – so be on the lookout! So coming back to the whole opposites as medicine thing – being that I have a naturally acidic type – that means I need to limit and avoid foods that increase those qualities, one of those things being coffee. Literally reading that broke my heart. If you’ve followed me around on Instagram, you know that I have an undying love with weekend coffee shop time. There is something so perfect about setting up camp at my favorite shop with my laptop, book, headphones, and a big latte cup – so to find out that coffee wasn’t on the list of things I should be consuming in copious amounts was a bummer. Not that I drank a lot of coffee in the first place – but I definitely had a few cups during the week on busy days, and an extra cup or two on the weekend as a part of my coffee shop routine. 

Ayurveda emphasizes balance as a way of life, and what I like most about it is while there are certain foods the practice suggests you avoid entirely based on your dosha, it also says there are certain foods you shouldn’t eat all the time, but a couple times a week is still okay. I would definitely have a problem with completely eliminating all of my favorite things, but really it makes sense. You don’t eat cake and brownies and ice cream everyday right? (I mean if you are – power to you) But of course it comes back to the point of balance and the idea of treating yourself every once in a while. Because I lean highly towards the Pitta type, I shouldn’t be drinking coffee everyday as it increases fiery-like qualities which I already have a lot of. But – when I do have it, practices suggest that I add a sweetener like maple syrup or coconut milk to counteract with coffee’s acidic tendencies. See – balance. If you want to get really specific, you could coordinate the best times for your body to ingest coffee in the day, portion sizes, and different blends. 

So there ya go, if you see me posting less coffee on my Instagram feed, this is why. (: I’ve already come up with some alternatives when I want something similar to drink, and can’t wait to share the recipes!