Spring into a spicy new health routine!

Spring is the season of rejuvenation and regrowth. We see plants come back to life and many possibilities arise as the winter blues melt away. As we wave goodbye to winter and all its heaviness, we welcome the uplifting qualities of spring. As renewing as spring can be, it also brings with it a lot of rain and the dreaded allergy season, which can cause heaviness in our body and mind. And so our diets must transition from eating heavier foods like pumpkins, squashes and meat stews, to lighter fare like sauteed beetroot, roasted cauliflower, and light grains and legumes. Adding spices to our foods can help our systems with this transition and keep us in balance.

Some spices I like to use in the springtime include cumin, ginger, turmeric, and red chili powder. Cumin and ginger have warming qualities, and red chili powder has a sharpness that can literally help to melt away heaviness in our system. Turmeric, having naturally anti-inflammatory qualities, can help manage allergy symptoms and also has tremendous healing potential.

One of my go-to’s in the spring is my deliciously warming channa masala. As a child, I was always happy to see channa masala in the kitchen, as it’s one of the few vegetarian dishes that didn’t make me miss eating meat. I absolutely love having it with some hot puris (fried flatbread), but for a healthier alternative, I serve it over white basmati rice or whole wheat rotis (flatbread). Sometimes I add greens like swiss chard or spinach to get that extra boost of nutrition. There are so many variations to this dish and it’s hard to not share them all with you!

Here is my recipe for Channa Masala with Swiss Chard. I hope that it brings a spring to your step this season!


● 2 tbsp sunflower oil

● 1 large red onion (chopped fine)

● 1” ginger (grated)

● ¼ tsp turmeric powder

● 1 tsp cumin powder

● 1 tsp coriander powder

● ½ tsp garam masala

● ¼ tsp red chilli powder (optional)

● 2.5 cups garbanzo beans (cooked)

● 2 cups chopped swiss chard (stems removed)

● 2 tsp lime juice

● 1 tbsp coriander leaves/ cilantro (chopped)

● Salt to taste


1. Take about 2 tbsp of the cooked garbanzo beans and mash them with the back of a fork and set aside.

2. Heat the oil in a large pot and saute the onions with ½ tsp salt, over medium heat. When the onions are translucent, add the ginger and saute until the onions are golden.

3. Add the turmeric, cumin, red chilli, and coriander powders. Saute until they release their flavors. Add the garam masala and saute another minute.

4. Add the mashed beans with a little water to create a thick paste and stir in the remaining garbanzo beans. Add about ¼ cup water, reduce the heat to med-low, and allow the beans to simmer for about 15 min with the lid closed, stirring occasionally.

5. At this point, add the swiss chard and continue to simmer for another 15 minutes.

6. Once the liquid has thickened a little, check the salt, adding more if needed. Stir in the lime juice and coriander leaves, and turn off the heat.

7. Enjoy with rice, whole wheat rotis or puris!