Tag Archives: Nourishing Traditions

Beans at High Altitudes!

beans-in-colander

A long time ago…more than six years now, I published a chart that summarized how to soak beans…which “neutralizers” for which beans, how long to soak them, at what temperature water, and how to cook them. I gleaned the information from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. When I asked Sally to review my chart for accuracy, she said that I had missed the baking soda. “Baking soda”?! There was no mention of baking soda in her chapters on beans! Yikes! Sally provided me with a report to read through on how to make beans more easily digested  that had been published in Wise Traditions, the journal of the Weston A. Price Foundation. In order to make my soaking chart accurate, I needed to include baking soda as one of the neutralizers for specific types of beans. So I updated the chart, got her “thumbs up”, and had it printed. My chart is called “Preparing Whole Grains and Legumes for Ease of Digestion and  Nutrient Availability“. It has been available on my website since 2010. It is hand-illustrated and hand-lettered, and it has well served many people around the world since then.

As some of you know, I moved to Colorado in 2011. I now live at almost 5,000 feet, after living at sea level for all of my life until then. Living at high altitude demands some changes in the kitchen. One of those changes has been in cooking beans. Now, while we are not big bean eaters in my house, I do soak beans for chili, and lentils for soup, etc. I have found the easiest way to make the perfect beans at high altitude. I shared that information in my latest post on Selene River Press, in “Perfect Beans at 5,000 Feet“. You can find that article here. I hope you enjoy it!

 

Order your own Bean and Grain Chart!

Nourishing Traditions, by Sally Fallon Morell

 

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Bone Broth does not heal a leaky gut!

Beef broth and vegetables

Nope. It does not–at least, according to the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) Diet. In fact, bone broth is not even mentioned in the diet! Can you believe it?  A little background here.

I came across the book Gut and Psychology Syndrome in 2007, in my search for healing diets specifically for children with autism spectrum and ADD or ADHD. I had read many others, parts of which included many things that I could see would work. But somehow, they never felt complete to me. That same year, nearly a decade ago, I was blessed to meet Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, author of the book and creator of the healing protocol for which the book is named at the 2007 annual conference of the Weston A. Price Foundation in Chantilly, Virginia. I remember that I drove out from my home in Silver Spring, Maryland specifically to hear Dr. Natasha’s talk on the Gut and Psychology Syndrome. That day, she talked for a mere hour and fifteen minutes, one of many other “track” speakers. (At nearly every conference since then, Dr. Natasha has presented an entire day on GAPS. This was the introduction of her work to “WAPers” and others who sought alternative healing based on traditional foods.)  As I sat and listened to her talk, tears welled up and I cried. I cried the tears of knowing that I had finally found someone with answers to why people were so sick. Why the children were so sick, and what could be done about it. The program she explained felt complete. It had the missing pieces. And it started with THE FOOD.

For those of you who know me, you know that I believe and have built my life’s work on the understanding that “food is the foundation”. Good food. Real food. Food that is raised in a sustainable way. Food that nourishes the land as it is grown, and the people that eat it. Food that is cooked in a way that preserves and maximizes nutrient value and digestibility. Food provides the building blocks, macro and micro-nutrients that the human body needs to thrive. It has come to be known as “nourishing, traditional food”, based on the principles of Dr. Weston A. Price, and the cookbook that Sally Fallon (Morell) published in 1998, Nourishing Traditions. To hear that day a medical doctor talk about how AUTISM could be healed through FOOD…how it worked and why it worked, was at the same time mind-blowing to me, and obviously simple. Of course it could. Of course it would. So, after that day, I set myself the task of learning the diet, inside and out, the nuances, the cooking techniques so that I could share them with anyone who would listen…and I do that to this day.

I developed cooking classes specific to the GAPS diet in 2010. When I was introduced to Dr. Joseph Mercola in 2011 by Dr. Natasha and her husband at the Wise Traditions Conference in Dallas, and they told him I had developed cooking classes for the GAPS diet, he used the term “ground breaking”. Yes, they were–and yes, they are, for I am still working to teach those techniques that are specific to GAPS, to clear up misunderstandings about cooking for the diet and how it works. I write, I blog, I speak, I teach. Wherever and whenever I can. When I realized the misunderstanding about bone broth that was going around the forums and list serves at that time–that moms all over the country were trying to implement the diet with bone broth–long cooked bone broth, full of glutamic acid (read “MSG”), which could trigger neurological symptoms in those that had them (read “autistic children”) had to be corrected. There is no bone broth in GAPS, folks. The stock that Dr. Natasha writes about is clearly Meat Stock. Short cooked stock, made from meaty bones with joints and connective tissue. Yes, you can throw in marrow bones for their added goodness, but they are not the main ingredients.

In order to get the word out and clear up the confusion between bone broth and meat stock, I started writing a series of books called Cooking Techniques for the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) Diet. Eventually, there will be four parts to the series, explaining the very important nuances of cooking for this healing protocol. This is not the “well” diet, folks. It is a therapeutic diet, that is designed to produced therapeutic results. Part I of my series of books (available as ebooks to get the word out, pdfs and print editions), the most important part, is called “Meat Stock and Bone Broth“. My publisher, Selene River Press (a fabulous publisher that carries select books on nutrition and health based on the works of Dr. Royal Lee) puts it like this: “Bringing new clarity to the GAPS diet in non-clinical language all readers can understand, expert chef, author, and teacher Monica Corrado shores up a critical but often misunderstood aspect of the GAPS healing protocol—meat stock and bone broth. When you make them. How you make them. Why you make them. And, crucially, why you shouldn’t mix them up.”

I invite you to take a read of my book on Meat Stock and Bone Broth. I also invite you to experience the most healing part of the GAPS diet, the “Intro” with me during what I am calling “Jump Start: GAPS”, an online program I am offering February 20 – 27. An easy, inexpensive way to access me, a Certified GAPS Practitioner and a Teaching Chef, and have your questions answered. More info about Jump Start: GAPS here.

 

More about the GAPS Diet

More about Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride

Cooking Techniques for the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) Diet Part I: Meat Stock and Bone Broth

Part II: Culturing Dairy

Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon Morell

Weston A. Price Foundation

Dr. Royal Lee

 

Note: Some of the above are affiliate links. Thank you for supporting my writing.

 

 

 

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“Mom! Is that butter?!”

Was the call from my eight year old son this morning. I had just offered him a graham cracker that was covered with what we call “Nature’s frosting”: butter. Organic butter, that is…a good half inch high. Why did he question whether it was butter, you ask? Ah, the tale I will tell! Can anyone guess?

Organic butter: White :(

Organic butter: White 😦

The COLOR. The color of the butter was very light yellow to almost white. The color my son is used to seeing is YELLOW. Is this significant? YES. The color of the butter will let you know that the cows ate GRASS. We KNOW that what cows eat is highly significant: to the cows, the Earth, and our bodies.

What is very interesting to me (and should be to you also) is that the butter was ORGANIC. This is significant also… It tells you that even though butter may be organic, it in no way means it comes from grass-fed or pastured cows. (It does currently guarantee that the grains the cows are fed are organic– which will guard you from the GMO-laden feeds used in conventional dairies. ) Why should you care?

Folks all over the country are starting to wake up to preferring grass-fed or “pastured” dairy products including butter, milk, cream and cheese. Grass-fed or pastured dairy is nutritionally superior to dairy that comes from grain-fed operations. And not only that, but it also comes from cows that are raised on pasture, as Nature intended them to be… Not in the confinement feeding operations (CAFOs, confined animal feeding operations) that became so popular in this country in the eighties.

Beautiful YELLOW grass-fed butter!! Homemade!

Beautiful YELLOW grass-fed butter!! Homemade!

So in this case, “the eyes have it”: rich, yellow butter IS better. And use it liberally, folks. Nature’s frosting.

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Now Here’s an Idea – Learn To Teach Traditional Cooking!

Image

The Inaugural class of Cooking for Well-Being Teacher Training! August 2012

Want to know the story behind Cooking for Well-Being, how it started and where I am going? Check out my article on The Healthy Home Economist blog…I am the featured guest blogger today! Thanks to Sarah Pope for the opportunity!

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Ferments: A Cornerstone of GAPS(TM)

Seems that everyone I talk to that is “doing the GAPS diet” is not actually doing the GAPS diet. FERMENTS are a cornerstone of the GAPS diet, so why aren’t folks eating them and using them as they need to?

I’ve got a couple of ideas: 1. They don’t know how to make them, 2. They don’t know where to buy them, or 3. They just don’t realize how important they are to the success of the diet.

Ferments are oh so easy to make. I LOVE ferments. I love teaching ferments. I think ferments may be THE MOST IMPORTANT part of a healthy diet today. That’s why I run around giving people fermented condiments and teaching fermentation to almost anyone who asks. If you don’t know how to make them, pick up a book (GAPS, Nourishing Traditions, Wild Fermentation or my book, with Love from Grandmother’s Kitchen: Traditional Cooking Techniques for Well-Being). Learn to make fermented ketchup, mustard and mayo! (how easy is that?) or come to a class! I will be teaching one on Saturday, February 25, inWestminster, CO.

If you don’t want to learn, there are more than a few good ferments out there that you may purchase. Food co-ops tend to be full of them, and here inColorado, lots of folks make them and then swap them at food swaps. MOMs (My Organic Market) or the Takoma Park Coop in the DC area are chock full of them. You may also order them online. Some brands are Deep Root or Bubbies. So I hear you say, “I can’t find those brands; we don’t have those brands. How do I know a “good ferment” when I see one?” And I say, first, a ferment that is live will be found in the refrigerated section of the store. (That rule doesn’t help when you are shopping on the internet, I know.) So use rule number 2: look at the ingredient list. A true ferment will have “the thing” that is being fermented, for example, cucumbers, water, spices and salt. That is all. No vinegar. Just salt. (Most ferments available in stores do not have whey as an ingredient.)

Now that we have cleared up how to learn to make the ferments, or how/where to find them, let’s move on to THE IMPORTANCE OF FERMENTS to the GAPS Diet. They are CRITICAL to the success of the diet. So don’t skip them, folks, and don’t just “kinda” do them. What I call “food ferments” and “bug juice” can be far more powerful than probiotics you take in a pill, for several reasons, not the least of which is that they areFOOD. That means your body will easily use them. They are also truly alive. I continue to be wary of probiotic pills, because although they “guarantee” a certain number of “live cells” per serving as of processing date, they are dying all the time…and how fast? How many are left per serving when you are at the bottom of the bottle? And what was the “process” they used to culture the bacteria, harvest the bacteria, or encapsulate the bacteria? I know you know I always encourage you to get back into the kitchen and make your own…everything…whenever you can.

So ferments, ferments. Good for the gut; crucial to the immune system; help clear brain fog…cheap and easy to make. Ferments give a “big” nutritional and immune system “bang for your buck” folks. No refrigerator should be without them. And…please note that homemade ferments can be very powerful. Go slowly, folks! If you have never eaten homemade, real sauerkraut, or fermented pickles, or fruit kvass, take it slow. For those of us who have been eating dead food for a while, ferments can pack a wallop! That means that they can “provoke a detox reaction”. What is a detox reaction? Diarrhea, for one. Dizziness, headaches, aches in bones. At the extreme, vomiting. So go slowly. You just can’t down an entire jar of fermented salsa like you would a dead jar from the store dead zone. A teaspoon or a tablespoon at most to start, and work your way up. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!!

To learn how to ferment just about anything–vegetables, fruits, beverages, berries, grains, beans…you get the idea…! buy my book, with Love from Grandmother’s Kitchen: Traditional Cooking Techniques for Well-Being HERE. And stay tuned for an entire weekend of Cooking GAPS (TM) Style coming your way in Colorado, California, and Boston this year!!

For more about how much I love ferments, check out the Washington Post Food section article Fermentation: A Wild Way to Make Food Come to Life 🙂

Pickles and salsa

Fermented cucumbers, aka pickles and salsa! DEEEEEElish!

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Under stress? got the flu? Healing Soups series…

Bieler broth

Let’s do a series of soups that are healing tonics, that will give you the minerals and vitamins you need… and electrolytes. We’ll start today with a variation on the theme of Bieler Broth…from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon…it is a soup created by Dr. Henry Bieler “to restore the acid-alkaline balance and sodium-potassium balance to organs and glands…especially the adrenals”. It is great for those under stress (who isn’t?) and those presenting stress-related symptoms, such as lower back pain and ligament problems. It is also great for fasting (which I personally do not recommend during the winter months), for “energy” and “overall health”. I was craving it the other day, so I made up a batch.

This particular soup relies on the healing properties of zucchini, which has a high sodium content that nourishes the adrenals and parsley, renowned for lending tremendous amounts of minerals to a stock or soup when added at the last minute. These two ingredients, along with celery and green beans are what helps to nourish the organs and glands.

Here is my version, which is a synthesis of Bieler Broth, a pure tonic and it’s tastier version by Dr. Connelly, more of a “vegetable soup”. Both of the original recipes may be found in NT.

I am assuming, as always, that you are using the purest and most nutrient-dense ingredients that you can find…stock from pastured animals, vegetables that are organic and sustainably grown, etc.

4 cups chicken stock or pure water or a combination

1 cup green beans (can be frozen if you cannot find fresh at this time of year or in your area)

1 cup chopped celery with leaves

2 medium zucchini, cut in half and then again in thirds and diced (can use more)

1 bunch parsley,  (or more) chopped fine

4 T fermented ketchup

sea salt

Bring stock or water to a boil. If stock, skim scum and discard. Add vegetables and simmer 10-15 minutes, until vegetables are tender. When vegetables are done, turn off the pot and whisk in fermented ketchup and parsley. Serve with sea salt.

Drink often if you are under stress or mending. :))

Note: if you do not have fermented ketchup, use tomato paste (preferably from a glass jar) and some fish sauce. Add at the same time. I prefer fermented ketchup because of the complexity of flavors it adds to a dish. (And I just prefer fermented ketchup!) If you would like to make your own fermented ketchup, I invite you to purchase my first DVD, The Ketchup Revolution: Making Fermented Condiments.

Bon appetit! And happy health and healing! Look for my next Healing Soup tomorrow.

Be well!

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Book testimonial…!

Hi folks,

I wanted to share this one with you … a testimonial about my new book, with Love from Grandmother’s Kitchen: Traditional Cooking Techniques for Well-Being

“Good Heavens to Murgatroid! as Landon would say!! If I had known how great this book was going to be, I would have ordered more than just two copies — one for me and one for MHF. It’s like having all the notes and charts you’ve scattered all about the house neatly encapsulated in a small kitchen DRAWER. It’s like having Monica Corrado at your shoulder when you need her. What was I THINKING?!? The binding is brilliant, the format and type are brilliant, the content is brilliant, it is BRILIG and doth teach you well. It is compact and concise but nutrient-dense. It might be Monica’s first book, but I don’t think even SHE can do better. THIS is the book you need. And you know who you are! TRUST ME!! Get it now and start the New Year off right. And no, I don’t work for Monica. And I didn’t even gush about Joel Salatin’s latest book. But I’m gushing about this one. TRUST ME!!  P.Hannam,VA

Thanks, P!!

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