Tuesday, October 18, 2005


regional yoga culture, part i?

". . . more young chinese men are joining in the activity. 20-something xiao gang, first dragged to the yoga course by his girlfriend, hopes that the self-proclaimed computer-addicted could lose some weight doing yoga.

now, xiao gang has become a real yoga goer himself. he also successfully lost 2.5 kilograms in a 3-month exercise. xiao gang says yoga has changed his lifestyle."

long-time readers are familiar with my "regional coffee culture" series, which shows how the specialty coffee passion has ignited around the globe. after this article, i suppose i can no longer ignore how yoga is going the same route. . .

i also find it another amusing rebuttal to the "yoga doesn't burn fat; you can't lose weight with yoga" crowd. everyone i know reports that in time they have lost some weight doing yoga; and often, only a few pounds lost are all that is needed to prevent the onset of pre-diabetes, or metabolic syndrome, you know?

obesity among all age groups is global health threat nowadays in a majority of countries, as the western sedentary lifestyle spreads worldwide. a challenging yoga practice can help make a difference!

many people find yoga more enjoyable and relaxing than the crowded, screaming gym. and that's the key: to turn people onto physical activities they enjoy in the long-term.

speaking of enjoyable things: don schoenholt's fair-trade and organic guatemalan atitlan (see dougie's blog for the most awesome pix of atitlan and his whole guatemala coffee trip!) from gillies. i'll be talking more about this tomorrow.

and in response to email requests, the recipe for the kuhn rikon fruit compote. i always make a whole bunch and eat it for breakfast for days and days.

it has no added sugar, period, and uses only low-glycemic-type ingredients, so i guess it's low-carb and low-glycemic too:

6 cooking pears (anjou or better, bosc)
6 cooking apples (mix types for best flavor)
20 dried plums, unsweetened and unsulphured (optional)
20 dried apricots, unsweetened and unsulphured (optional)
1/4 to 1/2 cup dried cranberries, unsweetened and unsulphured (optional)
1 cup water
1/4 to 1/2 cup port, wine, or marsala (optional but flavorful)
1 good quality large cinnamon stick

spice mix of your choice. . .consider, 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom, 20 black peppercorns, 2 bay leaves, 2 inches chopped fresh ginger, 1 or 2 sliced lemongrass stalks, etc. (i actually used all of the above)

2 teaspoons vanilla
1 or 2 teaspoons lemon rind, grated fine (optional - i actually used 1/4 teaspoon fiori di scilia!)

place water, alcohol, cinnamon, and other spices in the bottom of the pressure cooker. peel and slice apples and pears into 1/8th. if you like, you can chunk those in half cross-wise. add dried fruits if using (i think they raise the glycemic thing, tho' so you might want to check that out).

so now all that's in the cooker. put on the lid, and cook at high pressure for 1-3 mins., depending on how ripe the pears are. if the pears drip when you peel them, go for 1-2 mins. if you cook longer some of the pear will dissolve into the sauce, which is actually nice as it gives the dish a thicker body without having to add sugar for a syrup.

quick release the pressure. taste the "syrup" and see if you'd like to adjust the spices -- you might want to add more cardamom, etc. while the sauce is still warm, stir in the lemon rind and vanilla gently.

be careful not to mash up the fruit too much! let sit overnight.

this can be eaten cold for breakfast (try a 1/2 cup) or re-heated to serve with a pork, chicken, veal, or game entree (try 1/4 cup as a garnish).

posted by fortune | 10:21 AM | top | link to this | email this: | links to this post | | 0 comments

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