• 19Aug

    Mochi the dog loves bones…well she loves anything she can eat – a true definition of a Chow Hound!
    Mochi loves stock making day – she knows she’s getting big treats soon.
    We love stocks because they are so rich in minerals – namely calcium, magnesium and potassium. As a bonus these brothy minerals are in a form easily assimilated by our bodies. And, not only are there minerals but lots of collagen and broken down cartilage – perfect for our joints. Much tastier than those glucosamine/chondroitin supplements.
    Again, we find grandma and mom were right – scientific studies have shown that chicken soup will decrease the recovery time for colds and flu. Another win for Traditional Foods!
    Well, poor little S broke her arm the other day. An active almost 2 year old, she loves to climb and consequently fell off a chair. Ouch! She doesn’t quite know what to make of her bright pink cast but when she showed up at our door last night with her head hanging low gently cradling her arm and with the most precious look on her face, we knew she already figured out how to get sympathy.
    Little S will have to wear her bright pinkie for a month and then go through lots of physical therapy. To help her along, the perfect food – stock from beef or chicken or pork- all organic of course. She’s a lucky little gal because her mom already gives her broth everyday so we figure she’s got a good foundation built for a speedy recovery.

    Here’s a recipe for Chicken Broth:

    Amount Measure Ingredient — Preparation Method
    ——– ———— ——————————–
    4 quarts water — more or less
    6 pounds chicken bones
    1 each bay leaf
    1 stalk celery — sliced
    1 each carrot — sliced
    1 each onion — peeled and chopped
    1/4 cup white wine — or 1 T lemon juice
    1 piece kombu — optional
    Put all ingredients in a 6 or 8 quart stock pot. Simmer for 3-4 hours. Skim often to remove fat and scum. Strain. Store in the frig up to 3 or 4 days or freeze.
    We like to add some sort of acid source – wine, lemon juice or vinegar to help draw out more of the minerals in the bones. You can simmer longer if you’d like to get even more minerals extracted but the flavor can get quite strong. Some batches I simmer longer and some shorter depending on the end use. For instance, if I’m going to make a chicken vegetable soup I will go on the shorter end so the flavor is not over powering. Play around with the time to see what you like best in terms of flavor.
    To make Beef Broth or Pork Broth sub the chicken bones and simmer for 8 to 24 hours. If you like a brown stock, roast the bones in a 350F oven until they are dark brown and then proceed with making the stock.
    Go ahead and give it a whirl – it’s easy and oh so good for you!
    Here’s to little S for a speedy recovery.

  • 17Aug

    Well, P is getting the brewmeister award today…the Ginger Peach Beer was a big hit. Gingery, peachy and bubbly – very refreshing indeed! 
    P used the Ginger Ale recipe from Sally Fallon’s Nourishing Traditions but added 2 tree ripen O’Henry peaches. P also informs me that the salt was left out as well. So, I guess she only used Sally Fallon’s recipe as a “guide” :)  
    We’ve got another batch going and will try a Gravenstein Apple and Ginger next. 

  • 15Aug

    Whew! The house these days kind of smells a bit acidic – not just from the Kombucha tea but my new obsession with fermentation – lactic acid not alcoholic  I’m working through Sally Fallon’s Nourishing Traditions chapters on fermenting. So far I’ve made Dill Pickles, four quarts of Beet Kvass, and a batch of Sauerkraut is in the works. P got into the fermentation frenzy as well and put up two quarts of Ginger Peach ‘Beer.’ Which should be ready for a taste right about now…  

  • 12Aug

    I’ve been so busy – not just with work – but with my new house guests. Making extra space, ensuring they are comfortable and well fed is lots of work! Problem is that they are multiplying faster than bunnies and becoming permanent fixtures.

    It all started at the Four Fold Path to Healing Conference where at one of the lunches we had Kombucha Tea … not to be confused with the Japanese green pumpkin – kabocha. Kombucha tea is a fermented tea chock full of lively gut friendly bacteria and nutrients.

    Wow! What zing! So refreshing!

    It happened that my nutrition instructor, N, from Bauman was also attending and I remembered that she made her own Kombucha tea and frequently had extra mushrooms. So I arranged to pick up a ‘baby’ or two.

    After getting very detailed instructions from N and reading Betsy Pryor’s book on Kombucha I was ready to grow my own tea. N gave me two mushrooms so I started with two batches. Now, each mushroom makes a baby that you can use to make additional batches. I figured, why not make a few more batches so two became four

    …then… P got into the act and figured that we needed to have in production six batches to keep us going with a pint a day. Off P went to get two more bowls. On the way back from the store P thought, hey no we need eight batches. My god, at this rate, in a few weeks we’d have 64 bowls of Kombucha fermenting away in the house! We’d need to make more shelves and probably buy tea and sugar in bulk, cases of bowls? I felt like my head was spinning from some kind of Kombucha tea high… maybe too many toxins were being released in my body. Luckily, before things got too carried away I had a gooseberry moment and snapped back into reality.
    “That’s it! we’re stopping at 6!” I declared. Turn’s out P’s calculations were a bit off but it was an honest mistake.

    Starting today we now have a steady supply of K-Tea to keep us both detox’ing away.
    I encourage you to try it out – there are a few bottled K-Teas out there – I’ve tried GT’s Kombucha (stocked near the Kefir at Berkeley Bowl) and it was quite good.

    To your health, Cheers!:)

  • 09Aug

    It’s been awhile since the last post. I’ve been busy as usual – my brain though was totally blown into a different reality a few weeks back at the Four Fold Path to Healing Conference in Oakland. Dr Tom Cowan is a total visionary when it comes to the healing arts. He re-examines and questions what we have been taught about health – how our body works and reframes healing into a very dynamic fluid and participatory lifestyle. Dr. Cowan, along with Sally Fallon and Jaimen McMillian put on an amazing and educational conference. I am still trying to process it all.
    I spent the most time with
    Sally Fallon  in her seminars on nutrition modeled after traditional diets as researched by Dr. Weston A. Price. In a nutshell, our modern health woes are directly related to our modern diet of refined foods. But – even further, Dr. Price’s work and that of Sally Fallon (and Dr Mary Enig) asserts the modern premise that saturated fats are bad for our health is dead wrong – we need quality saturated fats from animal sources to maintain good health. Dr. Price’s research, spanning 10 years and studying dozens of cultures, illustrated that people following traditional diets of whole foods had less disease.
    That’s food for thought and worth lots of research hours. The biggest thing I took away from this conference is – feed your inner curious cat – question the establishment and find out what is really the truth when it comes to maintaining our own health and the health of our future generations. Let’s stop giving our health away to others – come on’ take back your health!
    Just think about it – over 70 years ago (when heart disease was relatively rare), scientist and doctors told us that butter and animal fats were bad and we needed to switch to vegetable oils including the new fangled hydrogenated fats. As you recall from earlier posts, hydrogenated fats are THE source for trans fats in the modern diet. Today, the National Academies of Science’s Institute of Medicine states that there is no safe level of trans fat in the diet.
    So really, what do we know for sure? It seems we’re just a big bunch of guinea pigs…