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  • Writer's picturedaniel smith

The Shiatsu Bus Food Energetics: Parsnip Risotto with British Asparagus, Tarragon, Thyme, and lemon.

Updated: Jun 13, 2023

Summer is a great time to combine Shiatsu therapy with good nutritious food. Eating according to the energetics of the season can help you stay healthy and active, and Shiatsu therapy can help you relax and enjoy the summer.

Shiatsu therapy is a form of Japanese massage that uses pressure points to balance energy in your body. When combined with seasonal food energetics, it can be an effective way to improve your wellbeing. Eating foods that are in harmony with nature’s rhythms ensures that your body is getting all the nutrients it needs for optimal health.

If you don't have access to a traditional Shiatsu therapist, there is now a mobile massage services available that provides Shiatsu treatments in the comfort of a purpose built mobile well-being clinic. The Shiatsu Bus makes it easier than ever to reap the benefits of this ancient healing practice while also learning to live according to the seasons with advice on the energetics of food.

This is the perfect summer recipe with lots of flavour and warming energetics. The crispy parsnips add texture while the asparagus is unmissable for its strong and delicious flavour this time of the year.

Parsnips are a warming vegetable, as are the Leeks and Tarragon which makes this dish have a Heating and moving action on the digestive system in particular. This is an ideal meal for supporting the digestive Fire and for conditions of Cold, Damp and Stagnation.

The use of wine in the risotto reinforces the warming action on the Yang of our bodies. It includes sweet, sour and bitter flavours and helps to move Stagnation and stimulate the circulation of Blood and Ki.

Serves 2


  • 15g unsalted butter

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • 2 medium Leeks shredded or finely chopped

  • 6large garlic cloves, peeled and crushed/minced

  • A few sprigs of fresh thyme reserve flowers for garnish

  • 1 lemon, plus the zest

  • 150g Arborio or Carnaroli risotto rice

  • 250g trimmed Parsnips, Diced

  • 100ml white wine

  • 500ml vegetable stock

  • Salt and black pepper

  • Pack of British asparagus

  • 40g parmesan, roughly grated

  • 60g soft creamy blue cheese, such as dolcelatte or cambozola, broken up

  • 5g fresh tarragon, chopped or 2tbsp dried

  • 1 tsp lemon juice


  • Melt the butter and olive oil in a large heavy pan over a medium-high heat. Add the leeks and fry for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it is soft and lightly caramelised.

  • Add the garlic, thyme and lemon zest, and cook for two minutes more.

  • Add the rice and give it all a good mix so that the rice is fully coated. Cook for a minute, stirring frequently.

  • Season well with salt and pepper.

  • Pour over the wine and let it reduce for a minute or two before you start adding the stock.

  • Wrap the asparagus tips in parchment paper with a splash of wine and quarter of lemon and bake for 20 mins

  • Meanwhile fry the cubed parsnip in olive oil and butter until golden

  • Reduce the heat to medium and carry on adding the stock ladle by ladle, until the rice is cooked but still retains a bite, and all the stock is used up. Stir regularly while cooking.

  • Remove the bare stalks of thyme from the rice and add the fried parsnip cubes

  • Add the parmesan and blue cheese to the risotto and stir gently.

  • Taste to see if it needs more seasoning.

  • Serve immediately, spooning on the asparagus with the grated lemon zest and a small squeeze of juice. I like to garnish with some parsley and Thyme flowers.

For more articles on Shiatsu, Oriental Medicine and Food Energetics follow this link:

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