Spring is a time for growth, and lightness. In Chinese medicine, spring is a time for expanding energies (in contrast to the hibernating and storing of energy that occurs during winter). Stir Fried Green Beans, Asparagus and Celery involves lightly cooking foods at a higher temperature to preserve the freshness of the vegetables, and stir frying is ideal for this season.
Many of the spring vegetables are light, crisp and have a bitter flavour which is good for the liver in Chinese medicine. The Liver in Chinese medicine is responsible for ensuring smooth flow throughout the whole body; and is involved in motivation, which is why spring is a great time to start new habits.
The green beans, asparagus and celery in this recipe have their crisp freshness maintained with the quick stir frying method used. In Chinese medicine, foods have certain properties; asparagus is bitter, pungent and cool, which is helpful for the Liver. The pungent property has an aromatic action, which helps with the activating and expanding of energies. Celery is sweet, pungent and cool. The green beans are sweet and neutral, which is perfect for the Spleen which is the basis of digestion in Chinese medicine. The garlic and ginger are both pungent and warm, aiding in improving digestive function. (Maclean, Will and Lyttleton, Jane, 2003,Clinical handbook of internal medicine, Volume 2, pp 890-892)