The magic season of fall + sage warming recipe

As the fall is fully unfurling with the beautiful colors of the larches, I can sense the seasonal change both physically and in my surroundings. Squirrels are busy collecting mushrooms and pine cones to prepare for the winter (I love how they stick the mushrooms on tree branches!).

The garden begins to fade and shows all the signs that the energy is going to the roots. I feel the same way. In the Czech Republic, we don’t celebrate Halloween, but we celebrate all our ancestors who are no longer here. We celebrate our roots. The celebration is called All Saints. When I lived in Czech, I used to love to go to the cemetery around the 30th of November. All the lights from the candles (pure magic!) were lit on each grave; the air smelled like a mixture of wet leaves and damp soil, and for me, it was the sign of the beginning of longer nights, hot teas, and slower paste. It’s a mystical season. It’s a time for contemplation and slowing down.

As the cooler days are present, I’m craving more soups and warming autumn dishes. One herb still in my garden pairs really well with apples, squashes, root vegetables, roasted meats, poultry, and intensely flavored cheeses. It’s sage.

Common sage (Salvia officinalis) is a beautiful plant ally with lots of medicinal uses:

  • Astringent, drying; aids excess mucus, night sweats, gum health
  • A potent anti-septic great for sore throats, colds and flu
  • Antispasmodic properties help soothe muscles and respiratory system
  • Aids digestion, stimulates digestive enzymes, helps relieve indigestion
  • Anti-inflammatory and a potent antibacterial, antimicrobial, anti-fungal

Culinary ideas:

  • Sage tea with honey
  • Saute in olive oil/butter to make a crispy, savory garnish (great on pumpkin risotto!!)
  • Infuse in honey for a sore throat, cold and flu remedy, or a flavorful vinegar (you can also make a syrup!)
  • Shake in cocktails with ginger or citrus
  • Use in cleaning products due to antibacterial, antiseptic properties

My favorite Fall salad dressing recipe:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 16 sage leaves (fresh or dried) chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

This dressing pairs well with radicchio, apples, candied walnuts, chives, and cheddar cheese! Enjoy!

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