It’s getting hot out there! Did you know that the foods you eat can help you stay cool and help balance inflammation, internal burning and discomfort you may be feeling this summer. Ayurveda has a beautiful concept called doshas- which are are energetic properties that make up the constitution of a person. The doshas are made up of elements and divided into their main types: Vata (ether + air), Pitta (fire + water), and Kapha (water + earth). You can find my detailed explanation of doshas here. However, dosha’s are not limited to just people. All living and nonliving things have a dosha as well. Even the seasons have a dosha! Summer is time for the Pitta dosha, which means those with Pitta dominant constitutions can be easily thrown off of balance. However, the heat can affect almost everyone so it’s best to follow practices that keep pitta cool and happy during the summer months.
I’ve made this recipe at least a handful of times this summer. What I love most about the recipe is that it is flexible and it’s great for potlucks. You can add whatever you have on hand and you can add more or less of any ingredient as you prefer. Nectarines for strawberries, kale for mixed greens, ricotta for mozzarella, seeds for nuts. Hard cheeses do not work well here and they do aggravate pitta. To stay dairy-free, I really like using vegan ricotta for the creamy texture or I skip it and add a luscious avocado instead. Tomatoes can cause aggravation so use cautiously. I prefer very sweet, heirloom varietals over typical tomatoes found year-round. I’ve also added in gluten-free bread that was toasted beforehand and chopped up. Fresh, sweet corn adds another nice texture to the salad. Just make sure you are using a large enough mixing bowl as the options are endless here!
Leave me a comment on what you think of this salad. I know the photo isn’t what you’d expect from a food blogger (which I am not) and letting go of perfectionism is healing to the Pitta dosha.
Summer Chickpea Salad
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and well-drained
- 1 pint (heirloom) cherry tomatoes, washed and patted dry
- 1 cup mixed salad green, washed and dried
- 2 white peaches, chopped
- 4 oz fresh mozzarella or ricotta
- 1/2 cup kalamata or black olives, sliced
- 1/2 cup variety of cucumbers, chopped
- 1/2 cup walnuts, raw
- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, raw
- Zest of a lemon
- 1/2 bunch mint
- 1/2 bunch parsley
- 1/2 bunch basil
- 1/2 bunch dill
- 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
Honestly, I just eyeball the measurements instead of using measuring cups and spoons. This recipe is flexible so add as much as you like or omit whatever doesn’t call to you. You can easily substitute the types of cheeses and fruits here, too. Vegan ricotta by @kitehill tastes really great in this recipe. Optionally, you can toast the chickpeas for warmth and more crunch.
- Add all of the salad ingredients in a large mixing bowl except for the mixed greens.
- Make the salad dressing by finely chopping all of the herbs or chopping them in a food processor. Add olive oil, fresh juice of one lemon into a jar, sea salt, black pepper, and chopped herbs in a jar. Tighten lid on the jar and give it a good shake.
- Pour the dressing over the salad ingredients a little at a time and mix well. Taste and adjust flavors.
- Mix in the salad greens right before serving and top with edible flowers.
- The dressing can be stored in the fridge for 5 days. The salad without the mixed greens can be stored in the fridge for 3 days.