Tag Archives: Weston A. Price Foundation

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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Great Children’s Book: The Adventures of Andrew Price!

 

Andrew-Price-Plane-2

Love traditional food? (You must, if you are reading my blog!) Ever wonder how to explain the importance of nutrient-dense food to children in a way that is fun and informative? Here’s the answer! The Adventures of Andrew Price is a wonderful children’s book that does just that. In this book, the fictitious great-great-nephew of Dr. Weston A. Price follows in his footsteps and discovers how traditional societies nourished themselves for optimal health. Sandrine Love, founder of Nourishing Our Children, collaborated with Mohammad Naser to publish the book. Simply Being Well is a proud sponsor of the book because I love the idea of helping to spread the importance of nourishing, traditional food to children.

Full Circle!

I was so thrilled to hear that The Adventures of Andrew Price went to Africa! Feels like the teaching has come full circle! The book (the great-great-nephew) followed in his great-great-uncle Weston A. Price’s footsteps, returning to the place where much of Weston Price’s research about traditional diets was done. How cool is that?! I think it is very cool. Read on to hear how Andrew Price got to Africa!

Hilda Labrada Gore, host of the Weston A. Price Foundation’s podcast series and a local chapter leader, has made two trips to Africa thus far on behalf of the Foundation. Her intention has been to inspire those she met to take an interest in their own traditional diets and to teach about what Dr. Price observed when he traveled to Africa himself.

IMG_8007 Hilda with students

While in Kenya, Hilda visited an orphanage and school called By Grace. Those she visited have cows and drink raw milk from the cows. Their diet is a mix of traditional and so-called modern foods. Hilda read The Adventures of Andrew Price with the intention to teach the students and teachers about the value of their traditional diet. Above is a photo of Hilda at the school with the book.

Promotion

This book is currently on promotion!! What a deal!!

For an investment of $25 by June 24, 2016,   you will not only receive this fabulous book,  The Adventures of Andrew Price , but also ALL of Nourishing Our Children’s downloadable education materials which includes our DVD as .mov files, as well as the e-book, audio book, PowerPoint, study guide, food pyramid chart and food pyramid photographs after the promotion. That is a bundle that normally goes for a $150.00 donation! These are fabulous educational materials. They are visually beautiful, easy to follow, and top-notch professionally done. I LOVE them, and can wholeheartedly recommend. them.

If you have children, grandchildren, nieces or nephews, friends with children, teach children, participate in moms or parents groups…I encourage you to purchase a copy! The Adventures of Andrew Price is a great tool for communicating, in a simple way, the basis of the Weston A. Price principles and the importance of eating nourishing, real foods!

 

The complimentary bundle of educational materials will be emailed to all who order the book on June 25, 2016.

Note that this  book is a limited edition and there are only a few boxes of books left!

Book Review

Sally Fallon Morell, president of the Weston A. Price Foundation, and author of several books, including Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats has purchased copies of The Adventures of Andrew Price for her grandchildren and written a Thumbs Up Book Review of the book!

Check out these Testimonials!

“The minute The Adventures of Andrew Price arrived, we opened it right away and began to read it. It’s my son’s new favorite book and has opened a lot of discussion of grassfed milk and how we want to protect ourselves against cavities. So happy about this book, I hope more are to come … maybe a story about kids who eat their liver and cod liver oil! I could use a book like that! My son is five. When his friend came over to play, he was excited to show him the gallon of grass-fed milk we had in the fridge!” – Erika

 

5 Stars

“What a wonderful book. I pre-ordered this book before it was written and was thrilled to pick up my copy at the Weston A Price Foundation’s annual conference in November.  I was not disappointed!   It’s a beautifully bound hard cover book that is colorful and engaging.  It is a great way to introduce the next generation to the timeless principles discovered by Dr. Price.   It is not easy taking on such a in-depth volume, such as Dr. Price’s Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, and succinctly summarizing the important points in a way that is relevant and understandable to children, yet the author, Sandrine Love, does just that.  She not only summarized the diets of traditional people that Dr. Price studied, but also the consequences of not eating a traditional diet.  I highly recommend this book for children of all ages.

Combine it with the Nourishing Traditions Cookbook for Children and you have the ultimate duo for beginners of all ages to not only understand, but to implement a traditional foods lifestyle.” – Barbara Geatches

5 Stars

“I read The Adventures of Andrew Price to my 4 year old boy, and was very impressed with the book – it’s beautifully illustrated, and the story is both entertaining and instructive. While reading about the dietary changes that occurred to various cultures as they became more modern, I asked my son what he thought happened to the people. He immediately said: “They got cavities!” I was so proud of him for making the connection, and grateful for such a beautiful book. It speaks to children a lot more than all the lectures we parents can give them!” – Joanna Leyla

5 Stars

“The story told by Andrew Price is appealing to both young and old.  My 3 year old is now very concerned with unnatural ‘holes in his teeth’, or cavities, and reading it gives me a great opportunity to teach him about the importance of eating real food.  We have read it many times over.  My husband also learned new information from the book!  It is a darling book with fantastic illustrations.” – Jenny Moreland

5 Stars

I was at the Wise Traditions conference in Anaheim and this book was selling like hotcakes! I understand why. It is a perfect way to educated children (and adults) about Weston A. Price’s travels and discoveries. And it’s inspiring! When you turn the last page, you are ready to go out and eat well to be well (and to tell others about nourishing foods, to boot)! – Hilda Labrada Gore

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Order your book and receive all of the Nourishing Our Children educational materials for free here!

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Why I don’t like (Meatless) Mondays!

Cows on pasture at Polyface Farm

Cows on pasture at Polyface Farm

Hello dear readers! Happy New Year to all of you!

I am writing because it is Monday…a Monday suggested to be “Meatless” by Food, Inc. and others.  (Yep. All over FB today.) Heck, there’s a whole website and movement dedicated to it. It’s the start of a new year, and I’d just like to clear something up from the get-go.

I would LOVE “Meatless Mondays” if it was specified that the meat we are being asked to go without on Mondays was CAFO meat. That is, meat from animals raised in confinement–specifically, Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations, “CAFOs”. You see, a CAFO burger is not a burger…a CAFO steak is not a steak…one cannot compare meat from a CAFO operation with that from a pasture. CAFOs are also known as feedlots.  (There are a  lot of them out here in Colorado; I have the distinct displeasure of driving by them and the stench of them permeates the air some mornings, depending on how the wind blows. Ever put your head into a diaper pail filled with dirty diapers and taken a sniff? You get the idea. Repulsive. Hundreds and thousands of cows crowded on a dirt lot, standing in their own excrement, eating grain full of soy and corn and more–which is probably GMO. And that’s the meat we get to eat here in the USA.)

The vast majority of meat eaten in America comes from CAFOs. Yes, it does. That burger at your favorite burger joint, that filet mignon at that fancy French restaurant, the taco at your favorite Mexican restaurant…nearly all the beef in every supermarket in the country including Whole Foods Market (unless it is marked “grassfed” and “grass-finished”.) But let us not confuse meat from CAFOs with meat from animals raised on pasture as they are meant to be. Grassfed and -finished meat is good for the planet, good for the animals and good for you and your health. One just cannot compare CAFO meat with grass-fed and -finished meat. So let’s not lump them together, shall we? The health problems attributed to meat is not the meat that is raised on pasture, sustainably.

Grass-fed meat is good for the planet. Grass farming sequesters carbon! This knocks out the popular argument that eating meat contributes to global warming… “if you care about the planet, stop eating meat”. Oy.  If all cows were on pasture, we would not have the methane gas problem that we do today, nor many of the other problems that feedlots produce including runoff and water pollution. The High Priest of Pasture, one of my heroes, Joel Salatin, talks eloquently about carbon sequestration all the time.  Here’s a great talk Joel gave at TEDMED in DC April 2012.  Chris Kerston of Chaffin Family Orchards  also spoke on How Grassfed Beef will Save the World last November at the Weston A. Price Foundation annual conference.

Grass-fed meat is good for the animals because…well, duh. Animals are meant to express their “animal-ness”, to paraphrase Joel Salatin. Cows and bison are meant to eat grass. Chickens are meant to eat grass and bugs. It’s “humane” if that fits for animals, it’s ethical, and it’s natural. What’s good for the animals is good for us. Read on.

Grass-fed meat is good for us to eat because it is more nutritious, leaner, and chock full of Omega 3s (those Essential Fatty Acids your brain and your body needs) and CLAs (conjugated linoleic acid…with anti-cancer properties and many other good things!) Everyone knows that the nutrient profile of meat depends upon what the animal (or bird or fish) is fed. Meat from animals raised on pasture is simply more nutritious because it comes from animals that ate what they are supposed to eat. Grass.  Also, you know this food is more nutrient-dense because you are not hungry an hour or two after you eat! You are satisfied.

But again, this is America, and the vast majority of meat eaten in this country is from animals in CAFOs.  Not kidding. We can continue to patronize our crazy food system that perpetuates the confinement model, or we can make another choice; take a different path. Truth is, I would love it if EVERY day were declared a CAFO-meatless day! Can you imagine if everyone stopped eating meat from animals raised on feedlots or in cages? The entire fast-food industry would come crashing down…supermarket meat shelves would bulge with burger patties and steaks and hot dogs and sausages…and chicken tenders and breasts until they rotted past their expiration date. People would be healthier! Hospitals and doctors and prescription drug makers would have no takers! We would have more energy due to more nutrients in our bodies AND less toxins from our food. Heck, I daresay we would have a revolution on our hands!

Let’s do it.

Let’s make EVERY day a CAFO-meatless day! Or to say it differently, let’s make every day a pastured meat day! Vote with your pocket book, folks! Seek out meat from local sources (or not so local when necessary) that raise their animals on pasture. And make it a CAFO-meatless Monday! And Tuesday! And Wednesday! And…you get it. 😉 Eat Wild is a great site to find local grass-fed meat. And check with your local WAPF chapter for farmers, farmers markets, and CSAs near you.

(Don’t even get me started about all the milk Americans drink from confinement dairies. That will have to be for another time.)

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“Real Food 101″, aka,”Real Food for Dummies” or Top 5 Things You Can Do for Your Health

I have been meeting many people along the way on our trip across the country from Maryland to Wyoming and Colorado and back again. We have passed through Maryland, PA, WV, OH,  IN, IL, IO, NE, WY, CO, SD, MN, WI, and now we are on our way to IN and MI. In addition to everyone I met and had the privilege of teaching at my Cooking for Well-Being conference in Colorado, I am having wonderful conversations with folks about real food and good health. All sorts of people are being introduced to Nourishing Traditions and the Weston A. Price Foundation, realmilk.com, the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund and the Nourishing Our Children Campaign. Makes me so happy to be spreading the good word about all this good food!

My husband Franklin Taggart calls me an “inspirer”: someone who calls people to realize what they are capable of…and shows them that they “have the goods to do what they need to do”. I must say I love to inspire people to good health, good food, and help to provide them with the tools, techniques and resources to “take their power back”: their power to eat well and be well…to decide where they purchase their food and from whom (from the Food Industrial Complex with all of its implications for the health of the people and the Earth or from farmers, farmers markets, CSAs, etc etc) …(Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm has been reminding us that we “vote with our pocketbooks” when we choose our food. Who are you/we voting for today?!)

So along the way I have had questions from friends, family and acquaintances which are really  the same question: “what can I do that would be easy *and* high impact?” So I have come up with the top 5 things anyone can do that are simply a “switcheroo”, involve no training or classes, or menu changes. Just swap what you are using now with the following, and the nutrient density of your food will go up. In my private practice with clients of all ages and in my own life, I have seen hunger decrease,  thought become less foggy, children become more focused, weight drop off, and cholesterol levels beautify. (For information on the cholesterol myth, see Uffe Ravnskov, The Cholesterol Myth as well as Dr. Mercola’s Huffington Post article on the same.)

And so, the top five:

1. Use real salt. Throw out that Morton’s salt and purchase some salt that is high in trace minerals. Celtic Sea Salt from the Grain and Salt Society is highest in trace minerals, so I use that. Just check out the label…all “sea salt” is not the same. If they can tell you about the trace mineral content on the label, you’ve got a good one.

2. Use pastured eggs. Swap out supermarket eggs, free range eggs, organic eggs, or eggs fed “vegetarian feed” for eggs from hens *on pasture*. Buy them from a farmer or the farmer’s market, or from your CSA. Chickens are omnivores; the most nutritious eggs will be those from hens that eat a good amount of bugs! (Just check the color of the yolks…eggs from chickens that eat bugs are bright, deep orange…if your yolks are light yellow or the whites runny, they *are not* nutrient dense eggs!)

3. Use pastured butter, aka, butter from cows that eat grass. Don’t rest on your laurels and think the term “organic butter” is enough. “Organic” says nothing about whether the cows ate grass. Look for “pasture butter” from Organic Valley, or Trickling Springs Farm in the DC metro area. Look for butter at the farmers market , or get some *real cream* and make your own. (Butter has the perfect fatty acid profile. Stop slurping that fish oil and pile on the good old fashioned grass-fed butter!)

4. (If you eat bread at all) Eat sprouted bread or a true sourdough bread. There are several brands on the market that make sprouted bread, sprouted bagels, sprouted English muffins. Find a baker that makes real sourdough, or make it yourself! (Be sure you slather on the pastured butter, as it will help to neutralize the rest of the phytic acid that has not been neutralized by sprouting. For more on phytic acid, see  Living with Phytic Acid)

5.Eat grass-fed meat and poultry. The nutrient profile is very different for meat and poultry that is raised on pasture. Far more nutritious for you, better for the animal and for the planet. (All meat is not the same–comparing meat from animals raised in the Food Industrial Complex with meat from animals raised on pasture is like comparing apples and oranges–)

Okay, that’s the beginning. We’ll call it  “real food for dummies” or, “real food 101”. I am not going to go into fresh, raw milk at this time, as so many people in our country do not have access to it. (To find out about the state of raw milk in your state, check out the map on the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund’s website or check out www.realmilk.com) I am not going to go into fermentation or soaking your beans and grains, or making your own stock. That’s for level 2. Take it easy. Go slowly. One step at a time.

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Not for the Faint of Heart…my adventures with organ meats

beeve heartSo today I ventured into uncharted territory with a dear friend of mine, Susan Lucas. The territory? Organ meats. Well, to be specific, hearts. A beeve heart and chicken hearts. Tomorrow, lamb kidneys.  (I’ve been in liver land before.) How did I get here? Long story. Well, maybe not so long. The short answer is that I am teaching a class on hearts and kidneys next week, and I needed to try out some recipes. The longer answer is a bit more complex…

I have been eating a clean and nutrient-dense diet for years now. I “went organic” around 1998, which is 13 years ago…just about the same time I met Sally Fallon and discovered Nourishing Traditions and Weston A. Price. Most of my food is grown or raised locally and sustainably. I eat good fats daily–butter from pastured cows, lard, bacon fat, beef tallow. I eat ferments at almost every meal, and more and more of them lately. My food is clean food, good food. For years. But I have to say, something has been missing for me lately. Maybe because I am under stress; maybe because I have a five year old. I need more nutrients; I am hungry for something more.

The first organ meat to catch my attention was liver, the king of the organs. (You heard about that last month.) Well, I am still craving liver, so I’ll have to get some more chicken livers (Sorry to say, somehow there has been a “run” on chicken livers from good farms lately…hmmmmmmm, could it have anything to do with the liver class I taught last month? Lots of converts from that one!). And I have to pick up some more tomato juice so I can have my glass of Pottenger’s Liver Cocktail every day. (See Nourishing Traditions for that recipe.) Yes, it is delicious! But now liver seems somewhat ordinary, after my experience today.

heart strings

Heart strings. For real.

Folks, working with and preparing a beeve heart, that is a heart from a cow, is NOT for the faint hearted. No pun intended. It was quite an experience–breath-taking, really. Gives one pause. Makes you ponder life and death for a moment. Puts you right there, at the “heart” of the matter…looking your food right in the face; remembering again that when one eats meat, one is eating something that used to live and breathe and, well, have a beating heart. And now that heart was sitting on my cutting board. Wow. Four and a quarter pounds. Wow. Almost as big as my head. Veins and arteries…some blood…chambers…and heartstrings. (Yes, there are heartstrings. Like the saying, you know, “it pulled my heartstrings.” Well, they really exist!) I have to admit, folks, that it really did take my breath away. I had to sit down and figure out/feel into whether or not I could do this…that is, cut up a heart and use it in recipes. (There was no question for me of “going vegetarian” at this point–I had tried it years before and it did not work for my body–or shall I say, my body did not work not eating meat!)

I understand now why most folks use “organ meat” as “mystery meat” in their menus. When heart is ground up, it looks just like ground beef. We’re used to ground beef. We are not used to seeing a heart the size of a head on a cutting board.

Soooooooo, I took a deep breath and thought a bit. We know that using the organs is almost the ultimate act in sustainability, that is, in using all of the cow. We also know that the heart and other organ meat is rich in nutrients, more so than any other part of any animal.

I had heard before that organs were–and still are–considered sacred by traditional cultures because of their nutrient density. They were saved for pregnant and nursing women, and for growing children. It struck me sometime over the past week, after I had picked up my heart from the farm delivery, that organ meat IS SACRED. It wasn’t just about the nutrient density of the organs. It was both the significance of the organ (like one can’t live without a heart) and the fact that there is ONLY ONE per cow.  Wow. Heady. Trip.

beeve and chicken heart

BIG beeve heart. little chicken heart.

Soooooo, we took another breath and I decided to start with the chicken hearts. MUCH easier. MUCH smaller. (Like about an inch long, and an ounce or so, compared to 8 inches long and 4.25 pounds.) Since we were not going to grind these up, I decided to cut out the aortas and some of the sacks that were on some of them. Then I decided to try chicken hearts two ways-floured and fried and marinated and broiled. Deeeeeeeeeelish! My favorites were floured and fried. I cut the hearts in two length-wise and then dredged them in coconut flour with some salt and pepper. I fried them in bacon fat/lard combo, about 3 minutes on each side. One third “plain”-coconut flour only, one third with curry powder added, and the last third with chili powder added. I have to admit, the plain were my favorites. Just delicious. We marinated some of the hearts whole with a tamari/toasted sesame oil/lemon/garlic marinade for about an hour. (These hearts are little, so an hour was enough.)

susan skewering chix hearts

Skewering marinated chicken hearts

Then onto a metal skewer (we call them spadinis in my house) and under the broiler for 3 minutes each side. (Didn’t feel like firing up the grill for 4 little skewers…but perhaps at my Memorial Day bbq!) These were yummy, too, but my faves were the plain ones. I would also suggest that you cut them in half before you eat them–eating hearts whole is a bit rubbery, given that they are muscle tissue! (Next time I will cut them in half, saute in butter and make a gravy with chicken stock reduction, add fresh chopped parsley and s&p and that’s it! Oh, and maybe chop them up, saute with butter and garlic, and toss into a Bolognese  sauce with oregano and basil. I can taste it now!)

So, on to the beeve heart. I am trying two recipes currently. A heart jerky and heart kabobs. AGAIN, the EASY way to get organ meat onto your menu and into your family is by serving “mystery meat”, that is, having organ meat ground up like ground beef, and adding it to meatloaf, hamburgers, chili, shephard’s pie, tacos, etc. The recipes we are trying is THE HARD way. Getting right in there with a knife, and cutting up the organ yourself. Takes some guts, (no pun again;)) but once you decide you’re in for a pound, it gets easier. Take a deep breath. Steel yourself. And go for it. Once you do, you will see that beeve heart looks much like any other meat you currently serve your family, most especially like a good quality steak. Maybe tenderloin.

Half of the heart is currently marinating for jerky–I am trying two recipes, one based on red wine vinegar–spicy! and the other a tamari base. Into the oven on lowest tomorrow all day to dry it out. I’ll let you know how that one turns out. The other half will be marinated on Sunday morning for Monday’s bbq. A 24 hour soak and then onto skewers and on the grill. I’ll let you know how those turn out, too.

Until then, here are a few good links I found while investigating cooking techniques for organ meat, specifically hearts and kidneys. (Stay tuned for the kidney report…I’ll be soaking them tomorrow and making kidneys with mushroom cream sauce.) It’s Not so Offal, Cooking with Mystery Meat, How to Eat for Less, The Secrets of Organ Meat Cookery

And if you are in the area, (Rockville, Maryland), join us for the Heart and Kidneys class on Saturday, June 4. You’ll get to see, experience, and taste these delicacies for yourself!

Oh, and btw, my five year old son LOVED the chicken hearts. Couldn’t get enough. Yep, kids really do know what is best for them. 🙂Me and the beeve heart

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the jig is up! Happy Meals not so happy for any of us

aka, Why PROCESSED FOOD ISN’T FOOD…!

I started out with the intention of writing about “food fractions” today…and it appears that McDonald’s–yes, the Golden Arches–has given a perfect intro.

I’ve been talking about this for years…a while back, my Honey told me of a blog he came across where a woman carried around a regular McDonald’s hamburger in her purse for 12 YEARS and it never decomposed. No mold. No deterioration at all. Can you believe it?! But that didn’t get as much press as this one…

If you have ever wondered why you should cook and serve REAL food to your families, especially your CHILDREN, here’s one good reason. It’s finally out… Happy Meals don’t decompose! Do we want to feed this to our children? Do we think this could be at all nutritious and promote thriving and good health? Do we even have to wonder why our children are plagued with allergies, eczema, or over-tired/always wired? How about the inability to focus? ADD? AD/HD? We cannot expect our children to function optimally if they are not given the resources to do so. And INSTEAD of FEEDING THEM REAL FOOD and giving their bodies/minds/spirits a chance to COME TO BALANCE, our medical culture is promoting drugs instead. Let’s not even BEGIN to talk about CHILDHOOD DIABETES and OBESITY. Do ya wonder? Can ya wonder? McDonald’s is not serving FOOD. The problem is, hardly anyone else out there is, either.

Okay, maybe I am being too hard. McDonald’s does serve lettuce and tomatoes, albeit conventionally grown and therefore most probably laden with chemical pesticides, fungicides, and fertilizers. (Chemical soup for the diet! One more thing contributing to the toxic load the body has to deal with!) And McDonald’s ISN’T THE ONLY ONE serving what I call “food fractions“. Even those gourmet restaurants use buckets of food fractions with long lists of ingredients! Food fractions are components of food that are isolated in a lab or processing plant, and then mixed together and served up as “food”. (Can you see the cauldron or mad scientist…hear the pipe organ behind the scene? No, really, I am sure the current Food Industrial Complex meant well, in the interest of speed, production, and money…it’s just that OUR HEALTH has suffered!) An easy food fraction to identify is called an “isolate” (e.g., soy protein isolate). You can recognize food fractions because they are usually more than 3 syllables and are very hard to pronounce. Another red flag is when there are more than 5  ingredients on the label. Having a label at all should set off warning bells to take a look at the ingredient list!

So………is this food? The answer is NO. Michael Pollan has talked about it in In Defense of Food and Omnivore’s Dilemma and continues to talk about it.  Nina Planck has talked about it in REAL Food.  The Weston A. Price Foundation has been talking about it non-stop since it was inspired and birthed by Sally Fallon Morell in the late 1990’s…and they will continue the conversation at this year’s Wise Traditions conference in King of Prussia, PA November 12-15. Joel Salatin talks about it in The Sheer Ecstasy of Being a Lunatic FarmerSLOW FOOD began in Italy years ago to counter the Fast Food Movement in the US…How about Fast Food Nation? FRESH: The Movie…There are many more out there pointing the way back to REAL Food. Nourishing, traditional food.

We cannot feed our children (or ourselves) food fractions and expect them to be well. This is ersatz food, FAKE FOOD, stuff that looks like food, smells like food (how about those chemical flavor factories in my home state of NJ? can’t say I’m proud of that!)  and even tastes like food…but IS NOT REAL FOOD. ( I challenge you to stop eating the stuff for a month and see if you can go back to eating it again…your taste buds will be able to taste the difference after only 30 days hiatus!)

What does REAL food look like? To state the obvious, REAL FOOD LOOKS LIKE FOOD! REAL food is minimally processed. It is as close to the source as possible. For example, oats and oatmeal, vs “Honey Bunches of Oats” or “Whole Grain Cheerios”. Read “high in sugar” and “processed”. I cannot even RECOGNIZE an OAT in either of those cereals! Can you? Really? REAL food starts with the highest quality ingredients that are prepared in a way that maximizes nutrition for the body. The ingredients are fresh, local, sustainably raised, organic or biodynamic. Meats are from animals raised on pasture, or “grass-fed”. The fats are traditional fats: lard, tallow, pastured butter, animal fats, coconut oil and olive oil. The dairy is from cows that are raised on pasture, which has not been subjected to heat (i.e., pasteurized) or homogenization. It is certified raw dairy. Or if you are unfortunate enough to live in a state where fresh milk is illegal (can you believe it?? In the land of the free?) it is cultured, pasteurized dairy.  There are no additives, flavorings, colorings, or preservatives. The food has not been subjected to high heat or pressure. (Read most things that are canned.) Therefore, it’s molecular structure is still intact and its enzymes are still alive.

Basically, stay out of what I call “THE DEAD ZONE” in the grocery store. Heck, stay out of the grocery store! (Okay, now I’ve gone off the deep end, right?!) Get your food from coops, CSAs, farmers markets, wholesale clubs…grow some yourself. If you are going to shop in the grocery store, and many of us must…read your labels, and stay on the perimeter as much as possible.

Enough said.

Start feeding your children, your family and yourselves REAL Food. Nourishing, traditional food. Try it for 3 months. Heck, try it for 1 month, I dare ya! You will start feeling better, symptoms and allergies will subside…the ability to focus will follow. If you don’t know how to cook nourishing, traditional food, REAL food, come to a class…or watch for my cookbook, due out by the WAPF conference–mid November.

If you won’t cook for yourself, cook for your children. I teach a series of Cooking for Well-Being Classes called REAL Foods for Thriving Children. I am starting a new series in Oakton, VA on Tuesday mornings 10/19.  I also teach a series called small changes: BIG impact–REAL food to Balance Children on the Autistic Spectrum and with AD/HD. I am teaching this series in Great Falls, VA on Saturday mornings. Check the Schedule of Classes for details. All of these classes are open to everyone. You do not have to have a child to benefit. THE TECHNIQUES ARE UNIVERSAL. And if time is tight and you would like to learn it all in one day, come to the Wise Traditions conference in November and sign up for an all-day class with me on Monday, November 15. All the techniques and all the timing to fit this food into your busy life! Just come!

As always, I look forward to teaching you how to cook nourishing, traditional food! REAL food! 🙂

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