Archive for the Eating Category
1 3/4 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
1 1/2 cups organic chocolate chips (dark or milk depending on preference) or you can use homemade raw chocolate.
There really is no reason to buy those kits of artificial coloring to dye eggs when there are so many fun options for coloring eggs naturally. I have memories as a child of eating eggs where the white was stained green or blue. Not healthy! We’ve had more fun experimenting with things from our kitchen than we ever had with the kits.
Here’s some of the fun you can have making your own:
Left to right: Beet greens, Coffee, Turmeric, Beets, Blueberries.
Boil 1-2 cups of the above veggies (by themselves obviously) with a quart or two of water. The more concentrated (less water), the bolder your colors will be. I used about 2 Tbsp turmeric. Boil for about a half hour, strain out veggies. Add two tablespoons of white vinegar to each jar before adding eggs. Add your eggs and let them soak until they are the color you desire. I let them soak overnight sometimes.
I’ve always used all brown eggs. As you can see the least vibrant are the beet greens and the coffee and they are my least favorite. The onions were awesome and I’ll be experimenting with leaves, flowers and fabrics this year too.
Other color options I’ve researched to be effective for color are:
Light Brown: Dill Seeds, red onion
Green: spinach (not very dark), Spinach, blueberries and tumeric combined.
Bluish: Red Cabbage Leaves
Orange: Carrots and chili powder together. Carrot tops combined with yellow onion skins.
Pink: Cranberries or cranberry juice
Black, Dark Purple: Hibiscus, Elderberry
Yellow: Saffron, yellow onion
*Green seems to be the hardest color to achieve. Chlorophyl and spinach only tint it lightly. Combining turmeric and cabbage makes the nicest green I’ve been able to make.
These are the ones wrapped in red onion skins. Use string to tie it to the eggs before placing in the jar of dye.
Do you have other things that you’ve had success using to naturally color eggs?
I’m always striving to add healthy habits to my family’s life. A recent one is making sure we eat a carrot everyday. Every time I eat them I notice that I feel better so why not eat one everyday? Of course we still juice them too.
It seems long ago that fruits and vegetables were given reputations that have stuck with them that don’t necessarily tell the whole story about them. For example: we all know that oranges are high in vitamin C but did you know there’s more vitamin C found in bell peppers, kale and broccoli? What are carrots famous for? Promoting eye health of course but they are good for so much more than that. They also have shown to protect against heart disease, stroke, and cardiovascular disease. I personally find them to be very cleansing as well which I’m sure can be attributed to their high fiber content which helps move waste through the colon.
So there you have it. Maybe your children will appreciate a carrot a day. There are over 100 species of carrots. Check your local farmers market to see if you can find some fun new varieties or grow some yourself. Make sure they are organic and don’t bother with the baby ones. Years ago I called the companies packaging them and they were rinsing them in chlorinated water.
Gift shopping is tough. There is very little that I would want from a regular store since so much of it is toxic, so of course I don’t want to buy those things for my loved ones. When I shop for others I can’t help but apply my own standards to their gifts because I care about their welfare.
There are a handful of ways toxins get into our bodies:
By eating and drinking
By breathing them
By absorbing them through our skin
By radiation through electronics
Isn’t it crazy then that what we may think of as a gift for a loved one may be toxicity wrapped up nicely with a bow on top? How many gift items fall into one of these toxic categories above? From smelly (headache) lotions to toxic candles, brand new cell phones, to loads of holiday candies, store shelves can be a scary place if we aren’t careful.
Most of the items I wish for are books or some kind of kitchen item. I know many women prefer not to be gifted household items but for me it’s a delight. I don’t care for jewelry or too many shoes so why wouldn’t I drool over something that is going to make my tasks easier the rest of the year or something green that is going to help me live more sustainably? This list is a few things I think would be a great gift. Won’t you join me in gifting others a gift free of toxins this year? This is a simple list with ideas to get you started!
1. At the top of my list is my Handset that plugs into my cell phone. I have blogged about it before here, and I am still loving it. I haven’t put my cell phone to my head in over nine months. I couldn’t be happier about that fact since it eliminates 99% of radiation which is a top priority for me. I can’t believe how cheap they are now either! I’d pay the full price all over again though if I had to. It has been well worth the money for me.
2. Pans, pans, pans! So hopefully everyone reading this is aware of the problems with our food supply and are hopefully going to the trouble to avoid GMO’s and pesticides but many haven’t addressed the fact that much of the cookware available today is toxic and leaches harmful chemicals into our food. Someday I will do an entire post about cookware since it is a topic I have researched intensely and it doesn’t come with a simple answer. There are safer options that come with high price tags and they aren’t always the easiest to use or the sturdiest. What I feel safest using is: glass Pyrex, Le Creuset stoneware, and stainless steel. I use All Clad pans but there are some very affordable sets of Cuisinart on sale right now. I also use cast iron occasionally. I have read that it is not the safest options for males since they don’t menstruate and cannot rid their bodies of the excess iron. I’m still looking for reliable studies on that claim. You are still going to have a small amount of leaching from most any cookware but some are much more harmful and leach more than others. The last thing I want in my body is aluminum or Teflon. If you know somebody using either of those then a new frying pan may be the perfect gift for them! Often times we worry about our main cooking pans and continue using things like aluminum cookie sheets or cake pans, so those are things to think about as well. I love all of my Norpro pieces. Clean up is very easy and they still look nice.
3. Drinking! Please don’t fall under the false security that all water filters are equal. They aren’t, and you could still be drinking all kinds of harmful things like chlorine, fluoride, heavy metals and other contaminants. Tap filters and pitcher filters DO NOT remove fluoride. Read the labels to these things to make sure they are removing everything you want them to. I use a Berkey and love mine. You can buy your own by following the link on the right of the page. If you do, make sure you use the coupon code Alex Jones for 5% off.
4. So what about the skin? This is simple. You have so much control over this one! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Don’t apply anything to your skin that you wouldn’t eat! I use coconut oil for my lotion and baking soda for my deodorant. You can get fancy and make your own lotions, potions and deodorants with safe ingredients but I’ve found these simple solutions serve me perfect. Remember that our skin also absorbs up to 25 gallons of water when we shower. When chlorine from our water interacts with organic matter in our water supply it creates dangers carcinogens called disinfection byproducts (DBPs). Not only do we absorb these through our skin, we also inhale them into our lungs. One of these DBPs are called trihalomethanes (THMs). THMs are classified as Cancer Group B carcinogens that have been shown to cause cancer in laboratory animals. A shower filter won’t remove fluoride but it will remove chlorine and many other contaminants. I use mine to shower and to fill my tub for baths. I even use it for washing my vegetables sometimes since it’s much quicker than using my Berkey. Of course a whole house water filter would be ideal to remove the fluoride but this is the next best option.
5. So what’s on my wish list? A stainless steel lemon press of course. I start every day with a quart of room temperature lemon water. Many people rely on coffee to get going in the morning but adrenal stimulants result in blood sugar swings and oxidative stress. Lemon hydrates and oxygenates the body. While we are sleeping our bodies are cleansing. Hitting it with a dose of coffee first thing in the morning is not the kindest thing we can do for it to help it eliminate the toxins it has been working on. Lemon water helps the body eliminate toxins and stimulates organs like the liver and gall bladder. I am on my second lemon press that I’ve owned. I’ve been really frustrated with the painted ones. I had a yellow one for some time and then the paint chipped off so I moved on to an OXO, silver-colored one hoping that it would last but I recently noticed tiny silver pieces in my water from it, ewwww! It lasted much less time than the yellow one. So I am done with them. I don’t know why I didn’t think of looking for a stainless steel one before now but this one looks like it will be a better option for me.
6. Other ideas can be homemade things like homemade cookies and candies where you have control over the ingredients. Homemade ornaments are nice. Last year I made wool pillows for my children so that I knew exactly what they were breathing all night long. I don’t have to worry about fire-retardant treatments and other chemicals next to their faces anymore. Essential oils like lavender and peppermint are great gifts for those who haven’t dabbled in essential oils yet. I even gift things like a jar of coconut oil and raw honey. I give my neighbors plants, sometimes indoor, and sometimes outdoor. Homemade quilts also make excellent gifts, although they do take planning ahead. I love quilting. This is a quilt I made my son. Whatever you gift, gift with love this season!
I just made the most delicious cranberry sauce that I’ve ever made, and I had to share it! A little bit of history about me: growing up, everyone knew I loved cranberry sauce from the time I could walk. Every Thanksgiving the family made sure to laugh about how much I loved the stuff. During the early years it was usually the canned stuff, then one year my Grandma made the real stuff, and I fell deeper in love. From then on I have made a homemade version or two of it every year. All of the recipes I tried had one thing in common: TOO MUCH SUGAR! So I began experimenting with raisins, dates and cherries. I’ve made it raw, in the slow cooker and on the stove but this version is the best. I’m eating a small bowl of it now. I plan to make it this way from now on. It’s the perfect combination of sweet and tart but the best part about it is that it doesn’t have any processed sugar in it. I used honey and dried cherries instead. It’s even GAPS friendly!
Here’s the ingredients I used (organic):
12 oz Fresh Cranberries
1/2 cup Dried Cherries
One Large Spoonful of Tropical Traditions honey (who wants to put honey in a measuring cup? Not me )
The juice and zest from one orange
1/2 tsp cinnamon
About 1 cup of clean water as needed for desired thickness
Combine all of the ingredients together in a saucepan and bring to a boil for a few minutes while stirring. Lower the temperature to simmer, stirring occasionally, making sure nothing burns. You can add more water if it’s thicker than you like. Once the cranberries have popped and the sauce has thickened (takes about 10 minutes) remove from heat and cool.
What dish makes it Thanksgiving for you? Is there one thing that it just wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without? For me it’s the cranberry sauce for sure!
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving full of laughter and love!
Today we made a recipe out of the Internal Bliss book, which for those who don’t know, it is a recipe book full of grain free, refined-sugar free, and lactose free recipes. The GAPS acronym stands for Gut and Psychology Syndrome. Although it may sound completely new and foreign to some, gut problems seem to be on the rise in this country. According to Dr. Natasha Campbell McBride in her book Gut and Psychology Syndrome, she explains ADD, ADHD, autism, dyspraxia (clumsiness), dyslexia, various learning problems, allergies, asthma, and eczema have all reached epidemic proportions. After years working in her field, she observed that not one of the children with the above issues did not have digestive abnormalities. These abnormalities manifest themselves in different combinations of symptoms in different individuals.
As some readers may already know, I have spent my life battling the last three listed above: allergies, asthma, and eczema. I don’t really have issues with the asthma anymore. I am still allergic to horses and cats (I used to be allergic to all pollen, all pet dander and much more!) and I am still healing from the eczema and food allergies. One of my sons also had eczema for a couple of years. It wasn’t until after his birth that I was able to make the connection between the condition of my digestive system and these issues. Prior to finding this book, I researched and finally found the connection between leaky gut and eczema. I was able to treat my son who had rash all over his body, and over time his eczema has completely gone away. I used many gut healing foods like bone broths, colostrum, raw sauerkraut, kefir and probiotics. For myself, I am not completely healed yet. I am rash free as long as I don’t eat any foods I’m allergic to, but once I do I will break out in a rash. My goal is to experience complete healing from my eczema/leaky gut and therefore I continue to integrate the above foods into my diet. I did the GAPS intro for 21 days over the summer and that proved very difficult to do in the heat. I plan to do the GAPS diet strictly now that it is getting cold and daily soups sound appetizing and inviting.
So after that brief explanation as to why we are experimenting with GAPS recipes, lets get to the recipe!
- 1 cup Pumpkin Seeds
- 1 cup Sunflower Seeds
- 1 cup Coconut flakes
- 1/2 cup honey, warmed
- Pinch of Salt
- 2 tsp Cinnamon
- 1/2 Tbsp Vanilla extract (I use homemade)
- 1 cup Dried fruit (any variety) -I used dried cherries
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
- Grease a large jelly roll pan (I used coconut oil on a glass Pyrex dish)
- Mix all ingredients, excluding dried fruit. Toss well.
- Spread on Baking sheet
- Bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes
- Remove from oven and stir in dried fruit.
- Continue to stir every 5 minutes during the cooling process. (For storage, keep in an airtight container at room temperature.)
This is on page 90 of the Internal Bliss book. I made two batches. I made some changes to one of them. I left out the cinnamon (I’m allergic) and added 1/4 cup of coconut oil. I like to use coconut oil in as many foods as possible and it tastes great in granola! They both turned out delicious
As I was slicing onions and tomatoes a few moments ago, I kept thinking that EVERYONE needs a ceramic knife and I really need to tell people about them. Then I started ranking the things in my kitchen that I’m so grateful for, and that make eating healthy SO much easier. It was a toss-up between my ceramic knife and my Blendtec for first place. They both get used daily and I absolutely love them both!
Our Blendtec is one of our most used items. We’ve had our Blendtec Blender for about four years now and honestly don’t know how we lived without it before. A nice blender is a must for healthy eating in my opinion. It can make smoothies, fresh juice, ice cream, nut butters, nut milks, milkshakes, cappuccinos, margaritas, soups, sauces, bread dough, dressings, salsas and more! We were gifted the wildside jar last year and it is definitely a must have if you are going to get the blender.
I only have one ceramic knife and it is the first thing I always reach for any cutting/chopping job. I feel like I’m on a commercial when I cut through tomatoes because it works that well. I have all Wusthof and Henckels knives, which are high-end knives, and they just don’t compare-even freshly sharpened! My ceramic knife is a Kyocera 6 1/4 blade. I have no experience with other sizes or brands but I am in love with this one. One of the draw backs for ceramic is that it is more fragile than steel knives. That’s what kept me from trying them for years, because I am a little clumsy. So far I haven’t had a problem. I just wash it and put it away in its own spot after I use it.
Our juicer is used at least once a day by either my husband or me. He likes to come home from working and make himself a juice. I offer to make them for him but he refuses. I think he rather enjoys the process. We juice everything you can think of from green juices full of kale, cucumber, cilantro, ginger and carrots to juicing whole watermelons straight from our garden. We have tried many juicers like I mentioned in my post “How to Select a Juicer,” and we absolutely love Our Omega Vert 330.
Next is my Salad Shooter. Yep! I use it often to slice veggies into small pieces to incorporate into our meals or just to make them easier for my children to nibble on throughout the day. As I mentioned in my post “Lets Talk Snacks” I like to slice carrots and cucumbers and pickle them in a little raw vinegar and I use my salad shooter for the perfect slices.
I don’t use my Excalibur Dehydrator near as much as I used to, but I still use it and am glad it’s part of my kitchen arsenal. I make kale chips, dried apples, and dehydrate the leftover pulp from nut milks and blend it into flour. I have the five tray and I highly recommend going for the 9 tray if you are going to get one. When I dehydrate something I want to dehydrate a lot of it.
Do you have relatives you’d like to see eat healthier but they just laugh at your ways and mock you? Do they even go as far as to suggest that you might be lacking something in you or your children’s diet? Trust me, I know what it’s like.
We have been off the packaged foods for years now. We do buy occasional packaged foods like dried fruits and so forth but not often and they have natural ingredients in them, no chemicals. Aside from my long-term food storage, I only have two small cupboards for food in the kitchen. These are home to all of my seeds, chia, herbs, spices, teas and powders like lucuma and maca so you see we are not heavy on the packaged foods. I could use a bigger fridge for all of the produce though!
When I try to tell some of my family how bad some of the packaged foods I see them consuming are, I get so frustrated when they don’t seem to get it. Why would they want to drink soda or Gatorade with bromine in it (an endocrine disruptor used as a fire-retardant and found in many foods other than soda) or eat foods loaded with genetically modified grains and nitrates? It took me a long time to realize that it wasn’t that they didn’t love me or trust what I was telling them but it was that THEY DIDN’T ACQUIRE THE INFORMATION ON THEIR OWN.
I know from my personal Facebook, where I have my bubble of like-minded friends, that I’m not the only one who repeatedly tries to help my family get off these deadly foods. I’m also not the only one who fails over and over and has to watch them suffer through illnesses caused by poor nutrition and exposure to toxins.
We’ve established part of the problem. So they didn’t acquire the information themselves, but why then don’t they want to? Something has to happen in their lives to break their trust in what is “normal.” The “everybody else is doing it reasoning” finally doesn’t work for them. Either their doctors fail them or they figure out that the path they are on is only making them sicker. We cannot force this to happen for them. They have to come to it on their own just like we did. That may never happen if they don’t get off the fluoride though, eeek! You may need to get them a Berkey Water Filter! Half joking there, but fluoride seriously has been proven to make people docile and indifferent.
One of the first books I bought to help myself (about 5-6 years ago) before I saw any of the movies like Food Inc. was Food Additives: A Shoppers Guide to What’s Safe and What’s Not. Something changes when you personally go through the products that you would normally put into your cart. Then you see those crazy ingredients that you can barely pronounce and you find that they are full of dangerous carcinogens that cause asthma, nausea, headaches, mammary tumors in mice, kidney problems, cancer in rats and many other crazy side effects. One by one you start eliminating things. It’s because you are the one learning it and someone isn’t telling you what to do.
I’ll admit the “badger them with information,” approach has worked on a couple of my family members. Oddly enough it was the top two who are the closest to me. I think that may have something to do with it but not entirely. Yes, they respect my opinion and realize I am concerned about them from a place of love but of course it’s not going to happen this way for everyone. Everyone’s relationships are different. I also bought the book above for both of them too. Maybe that was part of it.
The best way to help a family member is to gently provide them with information like movies articles and books if they’ll read them, feed them healthy foods when they visit your home and be patient with them. Don’t ever give up though. They are listening in their own ways. Make sure you find a supportive community like we have here at Primitive Mommy. It helps so much to surround yourself with like-minded people, even if your only option is online.
I must credit this recipe to my son. A week ago I made the Paleo pancakes (banana, almond butter, eggs). When I was done my boys still wanted more, but I was out of bananas. I was looking around trying to think of what to use and my 8 yo pointed to the pumpkins on my counter and said “pumpkins!” I’ve been experimenting ever since perfecting the recipe, and I’m super happy with the results. This is perfect for all of the pumpkins coming out of the garden!
Gluten-free Pumpkin Pancakes
1/2 cup Pumpkin Puree (homemade or canned)
1/4 cup melted Coconut Oil
1/2 cup Brown Rice Flour
1 Tbsp Honey
1 tsp Baking Powder
Preheat pan to medium-low heat with two spoonfuls of coconut oil or grassfed butter. In a bowl or blender combine all ingredients. When the pan is hot and a test of batter sizzles, pour the mixture onto the pan in small dollar size pancakes and cook each side until golden. Smother with coconut oil or grassfed butter and maple syrup.
This recipe was published on Tropical Traditions website on September 5, 2012
My favorite food is lasagna so obviously I have experimented a lot over the years in my quest for ultimate health to tailor it to whatever I’m eating at the time. I have made raw, vegan lasagna, gluten-free lasagna and now my favorite GRAIN-FREE lasagna! We have been loosely following GAPS after strictly following phase one for 21 days. We’ve felt awesome and plan to do it again soon but with summer vacations it gets difficult to haul soups along with us. Plus I’ve got a few moans about eating soup when it’s 110° outside. So for now we follow it loosely.
Grain Free Lasagna
1-2 tbsp grass-fed butter
1 onion diced
1.5 lbs grass-fed, organic ground beef
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp celtic sea salt
1 jar home canned Italian pasta sauce (can use store-bought, always buy glass-prefer organic) approx. 25 oz
1.5 lbs zucchini thinly sliced (approx 6-8 small zucchini) I used my salad shooter for the perfect thickness. I’ve also used my mandolin to make lengthwise slices, like noodles, in the past.
1 16 oz package Organic full fat cottage cheese
3/4 lbs grated organic hormone free mozzarella cheese (prefer raw for all my dairy products)
12 x 9 Deep Dish Baking pan (preferably with a lid so you don’t have to use tin foil)