My acupuncturist and I talk about food a lot. She’s kind of a foodie, as well as a Chinese herbalist, and we share the belief that what one eats – and doesn’t eat – plays a large part in a person’s well being. On a recent visit, she gave me a stack of stuff to read about various things I can do to augment the treatments she is doing; a lot of them are dietary based. Wading through all of the info was a bit mind-bending, there was a lot of stuff jam-packed into a few paragraphs, and it’s written for an audience of TCM practitioners, not curious patients, so admittedly, good chunks of it went over my head. But the lists of foods to be favored and those to be avoided, those I got down pat. And the gist of it is – eat like a goth.
I can do this!
The Eat Me list was full of black beans, kidney beans, black sesame seeds, beets, molasses, cherries, figs, black lentils, rhubarb, black garlic, pomegranates, roasted barley, red onions, wild rice, strawberries… do you see the theme here? It’s all red and black! There were a few other things on there, too, like dark leafy greens and some purple stuff, but those are all shadowy, gloomy, and doomy-lookin’, too. Also, my favorite dark and stormy seasonings are on the good list – ginger, garlic, turmeric, cardamom, black pepper, and maple syrup. Small amounts of beef and chicken, specifically black chicken, were also suggested, but I think I will be skipping those. If I had a black chicken, it’d be running free around my apartment, scaring the squirrels on the patio, terrorizing the cats, and answering to the name of Mrs. Pendergrass.
Naturally, my first thoughts were of striped, stacked, and abstract dinnertime creations that would make Lydia Deetz proud. I’m picturing skulls made of molded black and red rices (those bone chillers ice cube trays will come in handy for this) on a bed of dark curly kale. And grilled kabocha squash with a ginger maple glaze landscaped with Truffula Trees of purple and orange cauliflower. Bloodshot-eyed beets stuffed with wild rice and lemon sauce. And roast figs floating in a balsamic/port reduction like so many shipwrecks in the dark North Sea…
Now all I need is a decent set of dinnerware.