Windy winter weather means it’s a great time to get close to the stove. I love a winter kitchen issuing the scent of slow simmering pots of nourishing beans, bubbling soups thickening on the stove top and deep rich wafts of slow roasting vegetables and meats.
The cooking styles that are best suited to the cold winter months include slow roasting and baking and long time simmering.We use less water, a little more salt, and extra fat in winter to help warm us to the core.
In five element theory, winter is the season that corresponds with the element of water. The corresponding colours are dark blue to black. The corresponding flavour is salty. This is a good time of year to nourishing the organs associated with water, the kidneys and bladder. Winter is the season for eating warming well cooked meals that are easy to digest. Ease of digestion helps us maintain inner warmth as the exterior body cools.
To balance the flavours in winter dishes consider that a little extra salt will help to reduce bitterness in a dish and it will also balance sourness. If you have gone too far with the salt add a little something that is either sweet or sour.
No one flavour should dominate in a dish and you don’t need all five at once however a meal that represents sourness, bitterness, sweetness, pungency and saltiness in balance with one another will be deeply satisfying and delicious.
* All recipes ©Holly Davis
* Pumpkin photo ©Cloudy Rhodes 2011