'Tis the time for pears!
Or at least that's what my teachers are saying. I can hear one of them in particular describing a cough that is common this time of year then saying, "If you all have been eating your pears like I've been telling you to, then hopefully you've avoided this." Cue everyone adding pears to their grocery list.
Me, I'm not a huge pear fan. I like them; I just don't love them. And they tend to not travel well, which in my life sets them farther down the list. That said, with so many endorsements for pears lately, I was keen to fit them in.
Stewed fruit is a wonderful and easy to digest way to enjoy fruit for breakfast AND not give yourself a big sugar high and low. Cinnamon, an essential culinary herb, does a number of things like improve circulation & fight off colds, but the special quality it lends here is balancing blood sugar. Eating two pieces of fruit with no spices or fat component would not give me enough energy to make it to lunch, but when stewed with a little ghee and spices, it's statisfying and stabilizing.
So why pears? Pears are sweet, astringent, and cooling with a pungent post-digestive effect. They're wonderful for these dry and warm times of year to help cool pitta, especially in the lungs. They're a bit of an anomaly: They create moisture in the lungs, are useful in coughs with tough-to-expectorate sputum (the yellow kind or the persistent tickle) but have a diuretic action so they ultimately help reduce kapha dosha. Interesting, no? Those with weak digestion should be sure to have them spiced and stewed so the cooling properties don't further weaken agni.
This recipe makes one reasonable portion. If you feel you need a heavier breakfast, I recommend eating the stewed fruit, waiting an hour and then eating a handful of soaked & peeled almonds-- another great lung health food. Be sure not to eat the almonds & fruit together or your digestion may suffer (and your co-workers too as it can lead to stinky gas to combine fruit with other foods).
I hope you enjoy your stewed & spiced fruit!
STEWED PEARS PLUS
Prioritize organic produce: Apples & grapes (a.k.a. not-yet-dried raisins) both made the Dirty Dozen this year.
1 pear (I used bartlett here, but my mom used to make it with bosc and it was delicious)
1/2 large red apple
1 tsp ghee or coconut oil (ghee is ideal for this time of year or those with weaker digestion)
1 heaped tablespoon of raisins
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
Chop fruit into spoon-size-friendly pieces. In a medium pot, melt ghee and add apples, pears, and raisins. Stir, then add water to almost cover the fruit. Bring to a simmer then turn the heat to low, cover, and cook at a low simmer until apples & pears start to fall apart. Stir in cinnamon and cook for a minute or two more. The volatile oils in the cinnamon are part of what make it so healing, so it's best not to cook it for long. Turn off heat and let cool a bit. Serve with fresh nutmeg grated on top.
Do you wish you could communicate better?
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