Here in the Northeast, the spring rains have washed the earth in newness. Today the sun shines bright and strong, coaxing every living thing towards it. I’m not sure about you, but this time of year I have that desire to be bathed in newness myself- spring cleaning in the house and cleansing the body through light fasting and spring tonics.
As the energy of the sun is soaked up in all the green plants sprouting up, they harness and capture the life qualities therein. Young spring greens are truly nature’s gift and medicine for our bodies!
When I think of spring seasonal eating, I think of the spicy, tender, sometimes sweet and often bitter greens that grow all around us, beckoning us to return to living foods and cleansing tonics after a long winter of earthy and sweet root vegetables. In the garden chives are coming up, and in the woods, the wild leeks, or ramps, are everywhere! Ramps are a traditional wild food, and each year my family looks forward to their arrival. They tend to grow on hillsides and near maples, so look for them there.
The Cedar Ring Circle mamas headed out to forage the other day, and we found many many patches of young ramps.
You can see all the ramp patches covering the hill in green…
We gather carefully, snapping a bulb or two from each cluster. Be careful not to remove the seed pod, or next year’s harvest will be less plentiful.
They are young and small, and pretty concentrated right now. They mellow out a bit as they grow bigger, and when the full heat of summer comes they will begin to brown and die away to make room for the next round of nature’s glories.
While the Mamas gather, the children explore…
And the babies have a woodland play date.
We also find many of these beautiful dark purply plants… anyone out there know what they are?
It seems the animals like them, as we found some with the tops nibbled off.
And these strange mushrooms- like giant olives.
Wondering what to do with all your ramps? Enjoy this delicious recipe we make each year, found here. I use nitrate free bacon, whole spelt flour, and organic raw cream. MMM!
You want to wash your ramps really well, and you can use the whole plant (holistic cooking at its best!).
Everyone gets involved!
Don’t forget to add some fresh chives from the garden… mmm, the taste of spring!
And while we are on the topic of cleansing and healthy eating, check out our new additions to the Cedar Ring Circle Waldorf Co-op Catalog- Garden of Life whole food supplements and Navitas Naturals Superfoods!
I challenge you mamas who don’t already make smoothies on a regular basis to utilize some of these amazing products and watch your family’s health flourish! Part of our Waldorf daily rhythm includes a morning smoothie ritual around 10 am. In summer, we often freeze our smoothies in popsicle molds for a nutrient-dense treat.
My favorite smoothies have a coconut milk or fresh almond milk base, although yogurt, raw milk, water, or even (fresh) fruit juice are good too. Then, I add a handful of frozen organic berries (we go to U-picks when berries are in season and freeze them by the gallon bags!), a dollup of coconut oil for delicious healthy fat and satiating qualities…
some raw cashews (most cashew are not really raw, as high heat methods are used to shell them mechanically). Navitas takes special care to hand-shell them and preserve their enzyme content!
A BIG scoop of Navitas Naturals Raw Antioxidant Twister Powder (an incredible blend of raw powdered acai, pomegranate, and goji berries!),
a scoop of Organic Raw Perfect Food powder,
and a sweetener (maple syrup, dates, raw honey, or organic yacon syrup. With this raw (or mostly raw) smoothie, you are getting tons of enzymes, not to mention probiotics in the partially fermented Perfect Food greens, and basically, a bit of everything good!
Oh, and don’t forget a bit of delicious raw organic cacao powder. Who doesn’t love a chocolate smoothie!? I add a scoop when I am having trouble keeping up with my wild monkeys ;). A little goes a long way!
And for some incredible recipes, you have to check out Navitas Natural’s amazing recipe center, for mouth-watering raw food recipes featuring their incredible assortment of superfoods (including more great smoothie recipes). And, if any of you co-op members see something you’d like to try from the Navitas product line, drop me a line and I’ll add it to the Cedar Ring Circle Co-op catalog.
I’d love to hear about some of your favorite spring wild foods and cleansing or healthy recipe links- please share in the comments if you have a minute!
And one more announcement- Cedar Ring Circle is thrilled to announce our new partnership with Earthschooling!. Kristie Burns and I have collaborated on supply packages from Pre-K through Grade 6, which support her amazing Waldorf curriculum. I love Earthschooling because it is flexible, chock full of ideas and lessons, and includes lots of hands-on support like videos, song mp3’s, and more. It is also very affordable! View our Grades packages on her website here, or on the Cedar Ring Circle Earthschooling page here.
The Cedar Ring Circle page also features additional “supplementary packages” and a few optional items to complement the packages and round out your child’s year. We are happy to work with Earthschooling on these select items, and welcome Earthschooling friends to look into co-op membership (members have the added benefit of 10-15% off supplies included in the packages, and the ability to order individual items over time rather than everything at once- not to mention a vast and ever-growing selection of Waldorf books, toys, fibers, and woollens).
Go out and enjoy the sun!