shadow

Warm Smoothies for New Mama

oat-smoothieNourish postpartum mothers for lactation, strength and rejuvenation with warm smoothies.  Sound wierd?  They are delicious, or can be.  Here is a Mother’s Nourishing Oat Drink.  I would love to hear recipe play.

Maya Tiwari’s cookbook, A Life of Balance has some good recipes to work with, and can use some modifications for the postpartum window.   Coming out of a long home spring cleanse (PK style), my agni is iffy and my craving is for rejuvenating influences – I’m a good candidate (using less oil/ghee) for testing postpartum recipes.  How about you or loved ones?  Children love these too.

Both barley and oats are reported by some sources helpful for lactation.   Barley being astringent and more cleansing, it will be more for Kapha moms or after first few weeks, or if there is a cold and she still needs this soothing, nourishing effect.  I’m playing with oats today.

In Ayurveda we know the gunas (qualities, out of 20 in nature) here are important influencers on lactation (notes below).

This one is quite good, was easy with pressure cooker and blender, and can use some refinements still.

Nourishing and Strengthening Oat Drink
serves 4

Quick and Easy!

2 cups pure water in medium pressure cooker
1/4 cup steel cut oats
2 cup water on oats, in stainless inset bowel for pressure cooker
3 T iron rich sweetener – dates, succanat or jaggery syrup not raisins
1/2 tsp anise or fennel seed
2 – 3 slices fresh ginger
2 T light sesame oil
1/4 tsp mineral salt
1/2 tsp Bala

or use 1 tsp-1Tbs extra ghee per serving for early postpartum mothers

Instructions

  1. Put oats, sweetener, herbs, fat and salt with 2 cups of pure water in stainless bowel, on a stainless trivet or a few ball jar screw on lids, in the pressure cooker.  This setup will prevent the oat water from sliming the pressure cooker valve.
  2. Put at least 2 cups of pure water in the bottom of the pressure cooker – should come up or just over the trivet in a medium or smaller pressure cooker.   You will need more water in a larger pot.
  3. bring the pressure up and cook for several minutes.  This/instructions vary a little from brand to brand and by my experience, is not critical as long as it is cooked enough.  Turn it off and let set until pressure is down – this continues to cook safely without your attention.
  4. Add your warm (not boiling hot) oat mix and the cooking water in the pot to the blender.
  5. Process well and serve warm, and the same day.  Wonderful snack or early morning food for mama; she gets  extra ghee in hers.

Notes – the oats, anise or fennel and qualities (among the 20 gunas) of this preparation all support good lactation:  warm, oily, moist, sweet, very easy to digest includes some digestive and appetite enhancing spices usually.  Extra thin, creamy texture and all this is grounding, integrating, building to plasma/lymph tissue (rasa dhatu), from which breast milk is made.

If you like to play with recipes, here are some suggestions in keeping with postnatal needs –

  1. whatever source oats you have available – no pressure cooker needed for quick cookers.  Whole/steel cut gives best flavor
  2. presoak the steel cut oats or other grain
  3. instead of sesame oil, use ghee (min 1 tsp /cup, maybe 1 Tbs for most new mamas)
  4. 1/2 Cinnamon stick in with the oats – powder for quick oats
  5. dry ginger (and sesame oil) for kaphas
  6. more water for stove top cooking
  7. 2-4 Tbs soaked cashews after 10 days
  8. or 2 T soaked hulled mung after first few days, for added and balanced protein, with extra 1/2 cup water
  9. leave out herbs if desired.  notes:
    • the Bala is for strengthening nerves, grounding, special Vata rasayan
    • or Shatavari after 8-9 days for galactague and female systems rejuv; estrogenic
    • or Ashwagandha after 8-9 days for grounding, mamsa dhatu, vata, and doing too much
    • or Vidari Kanda or Wild Yam for progesterone supports
  10. Varieties of rice instead of oats – (be sure to soak and pressure or long cook) – favor a few whole cloves, maybe few cardamom seeds.

Madhavi Rathod’s mother taught me the Raab recipe in our cookbook, which is prepared differently, also quick and easy.   You can use rice and other flours in that way also, for even more yum and gluten free options.  For some, especially vegetarians, wheat is particularly satisfying and grounding.  Semolina (organic, please due to all the things they do to the plants these days) may bother some with gluten sensitivity, but the outer husk of wheat which has been removed for semolina, is the culprit as allergen for many of us.

Please share if you get a recipe which sings, ok?  Although I must admit, this body is quite pleased with the results of what I drank 1/2 hour ago.

Enjoy!
Ysha