Whole Living Daily

Vinegar, for Flexibility

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I keep checking in at the farmers' market like some child peeking at the gifts under the Christmas tree--fingers crossed that I might discover something new waiting just for me. So far there is not much action. Ramps, yes (and how I love them), but the sugar snaps and rhubarb and asparagus still elude me. Recently, I wandered home, almost empty handed, and stopped into one of my favorite neighborhood spots where I sometimes purchase picnics for our drives upstate. There I spied a jar of pickled vegetables on the counter. Apparently they are served as an accompaniment to various sandwiches and cold meats. However, the simplicity of the mix--the vibrant colors and strong acidic aroma spoke to me and I asked if I might have some as is. Lucky me!

It is twice as hot this week as it was last week! Crazy when you stop to think about it. The temperature is not really the issue--rather the drastic changes. I am certain this has something to do with why such a vinegary dish, which I devoured with some greens and toasted rusks, held so much appeal. Vinegar frees liver chi--allowing one to be flexible, at ease, which for seemingly countless reasons, can be a challenge this time of year.

For those looking for a quick fix (liver chi stagnation often manifests as impatience), combine 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with 1 cup of cool water and drink. Several recipes for Vegetables Jardiniere exist. Add cauliflower and a pinch of coriander seed to whatever recipe you select--divine.

Frances Boswell is a licensed acupuncturist at her practice, Qi Sera Sera Acupuncture, in New York City. She focuses on a lesser-known branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine, which identifies poor diet as a common cause of disease. Traditional Chinese Medicine understands that the importance of food goes beyond ingredients' vitamins, mineral, nutrient and caloric content—food has its own energetic and spiritual role in our health. Frances' aim is to teach this ancient wisdom, apply it to everyday cooking, and work with patients to modify their diets, in addition to acupuncture, to help them live, eat, and be well. Contact Frances here.

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