Tag Archives: healing

Beef bone broth

Famous for its nutritional qualities, especially for enhancing gut health, this broth is thick and murky which is just how you want it to be.

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The hard part is over once you are at this stage. Now what to do with it!

If you want to source the best recipes for broths and other healing foods, l suggest you purchase the book ‘Nourishing Traditions’ by Sally Fallon. It is a wonderful book and has an incredible amount of valuable information in it.

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Nourishing Traditions with grass fed beef bones.

There are lots of ways to make bone broth but this is how l made it.The first thing you need to do is to buy some grass fed beef bones and the ones l purchased were very white and clean with the brightest flesh l have seen. Finding a butcher who stocks these is a challenge and it requires visiting the shop or local supplier and questioning them as to the source of the meat. I found a local butcher and a certain amount of trust is required as he assured me all of his meat was from grass fed animals.

Ingredients:

  • 2 kilograms of grass fed soup bones
  • Cold filtered water. Just enough to cover the bones in the pot.
  • ¼ cup of organic apple cider vinegar
  • 2 onions chopped in half
  • 3 carrots coarsely chopped
  • 3 celery sticks coarsely chopped
  • Black peppercorns
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The best apple cider vinegar. Avoid the ones in the local supermarket.

Method:

Place all of the bones with meaty bits in a roasting pan and brown in the oven at 180 degrees until well browned for 60 minutes.

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Ready to be roasted

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Roasted and ready to go into the pot.

Meanwhile if you have any non-meaty bones place them into a large stockpot and add the cold water, vinegar, vegetables and peppercorns. Let that sit while the other bones are browning. My bones were all meaty so l didn’t need to do this step. Add your browned bones to the pot and deglaze the roasting pan with hot water. Pour this greasy mix and any leftover meat or bones into the pot. Add more water if you need to so that the bones are covered.

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A murky looking liquid.

Bring the pot to boil and remove the foam from the top of the pot. Reduce the heat, cover and let the pot simmer for a good 24 to 48 hours. The longer it cooks, the richer the flavour. A warning here that the smell through the house was so incredible in the night that l had trouble sleeping.

Once the cooking time is up let the stock cool in the pot. When cool pour the broth into a large bowl through a strainer so the liquid is separated from the bones and vegetables. Don’t taste it at this point as it doesn’t taste good. Place the broth in the fridge and let it cool completely until you can see a white layer of fat on top. Use an egg flipper or large spoon to lift this off and then strain again into a clean bowl.

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Looking quite awful. Remove the top layer of fat and strain.

A sign of a good broth is that it will be quite thick and jelly like.

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Ready to be used or frozen.

The broth is now ready to be used on its own or in your favourite dishes. Transfer the broth to mason jars or any sealed container. The broth can keep in the fridge for a week or in the freezer for 6 months.

The original bones can be re-used and this will produce a clearer broth. To do this follow the recipe again except for the roasting part.

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The original bones can be re-used.

Reflection: I went into making this broth with the best of intentions. Not having a gallbladder l have struggled to incorporate red meat into my diet. I can see that this broth is remarkable, and l will use it in the dishes l make for the rest of my family. There is something about the beef fat that just doesn’t agree with me at this point and l will stick to chicken broth for the time being.

For you copy of Nourishing Traditions visit:

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Beetroot, Sweet Potato and Pumpkin Soup.

This soup has a wonderful balance of flavours with the most important element  being a beautiful home-made chicken stock. It is such a delightful colour and looks so much like tomato soup but has a very distinctive flavour of beetroot with a lovely sweetness. 

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A thick and delicious soup with a surprising flavour.

Ingredients:

Check the recipe-soup section of the website for the chicken stock recipe.

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1 litre of home-made chicken stock, 2 small beetroot or 1 1/2 large, 1 medium sweet potato, 1 large brown onion, 1/2 teaspoon pink rock salt and 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper.

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Just a small amount of pumpkin to thicken up the soup.

Method:

Prepare the vegetables by washing, peeling and chopping.

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Add all ingredients except the stock, into a medium-sized saucepan with some olive oil.

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Cook until the vegetables are starting to soften and stir the ingredients every few minutes.

Add the stock and put the lid on and let simmer for about 60 minutes.

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When the vegetables are soft take off the stove and blend with a hand blender.

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Blend well so that there are no lumps. Place back on the stove on a gentle simmer for approximately another 30 minutes. Check the seasoning and adjust as required.

This is a very thick and filling soup. It has the most delicious sweet flavour and the colour is enticing. The main tips for this soup are to brown the vegetables before you put the stock in, use a very good quality home-made stock and use fresh vegetables.

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Rolled Chicken Breast with a herb, nut and vegetable filling

I feel quite clever making this dish as it is quite fiddly, but well worth the effort. The filling is a selection of lovely flavours and textures but you can easily change the ingredients to suit your own preferences. I used two chicken breasts which meant l had enough for a hot dinner when it is first cooked and then cold with a salad the next night. Each rolled chicken breast serves three people if you have a portion as in the pictures below which highlight how important it is to balance the meal out with healthy vegetables.

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Have it cold with a salad!

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Rolled chicken served with roasted swede chips, steamed brussel sprouts and roasted pumpkin slices topped with raw organic honey and organic sesame seeds.

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Served with steamed pumpkin, brussel sprouts and cauliflower.

You can use as many chicken breast as you like but l buy the free-range breasts in a pack of two. Give them a good wash with filtered water and pat dry.

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Place the chicken breast in between two pieces of cling wrap. Put a tea towel under the chopping board in preparation for the flattening of the chicken as this will make the noise less and stop the board moving on the bench.

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Flatten the chicken so that it is a nice shape by gently pounding it with a wooden rolling pin.

Make the filling by combining all of the ingredients in a food processor, or alternatively cut and chop them by hand and mix in a bowl. Change any of the ingredients if you don’t like the flavour combination or add in some more spices. The ingredients below don’t have to be exact as long as there are a good mix of flavours.

Ingredients for the filling:

4 brussel sprouts

2 spring onion green tops

1/2 cup raw activated walnuts

1/4 cup raw activated pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

Pink rock salt and ground black pepper

1 tablespoon organic coconut oil

1/2 cup fresh parsley and mint (or any other herbs you have)

A few leaves of silverbeet(use spinach, kale or bok choy as an alternative)

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A food processor is convenient here but not essential.

Spread the filling on top of the chicken breasts.

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The free range chicken breasts flattened and topped with the filling.

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Roll the breast around the filling

Use kitchen string to gently hold the breast in place. Tie the string at each end and push in any filling that has come out. Gently lift onto a lined baking tray and drizzle with your favourite oil, pink rock salt and black pepper.

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The rolled and tied chicken breast drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, pink rock salt and black pepper.

Cover with foil and place in the oven. Cook until the chicken is golden and then take the foil off and let it brown or place under the grill ensuring it doesn’t dry out.

Another option is to pan fry the rolled chicken which will give a more golden appearance.

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Cook on a very low heat with the lid on.

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Both the oven and fry pan methods work well.

Carefully cut the string along the length of the chicken and remove. Let the chicken rest for a few minutes before serving.

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Golden and delicious!

There are so many fillings that would be delicious with this recipe. I am going to try a pumpkin or sweet potato filling next, but the combinations are really endless.

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Have one for dinner and the second one cold the next day. A great way to add variety to the same dish and the flavours are quite different between the warm and cold versions.

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Green smoothies: A masterpiece every time!

A few hashtags to describe a green smoothie!

#nutritious #fibre #filling #colourful #healthy #fun #vegetables #fruit #raw #vitamins #minerals #antioxidants #tastesamazing #healthychoice #green

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Filled with green goodness.

Mental and practical roadblocks people use to not have a green smoothie in their life.

It it scary to drink a green smoothie

I don’t want to drink vegetables, especially green ones

There are things in there l won’t like

I’ve never had a chia seed

I don’t have a blender

The ingredients are expensive

It will taste awful

I’d rather have a normal fruit smoothie

Do any of these sound familiar? They can all be overcome if you can think out side of your comfort zone. If you don’t have a blender they can be purchased very cheaply or you can borrow one, and if you grow your own green leafy vegetables that is another one crossed off the list.

Take the plunge and try a simple recipe for your first smoothie that is guaranteed to be delicious. You can even leave the chia seeds out.

Cos lettuce (fill up half the blender with this, but make sure it is well washed), one small banana, one navel orange, 1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional), some fresh mint and enough plain coconut water to give a good consistency to drink or you can eat it with a spoon.

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Just pile all of the ingredients into the blender and process. Pour it into a glass and enjoy!

 

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An amazing colour with a wonderful sweet flavour.

A green smoothie is different to a green juice. A juice has most of the fibre removed and is much lighter to drink and digest. When l was very unwell last year l loved having a green juice as the nutrients were quickly and easily broken down and absorbed for use in the body, whereas a smoothie was too heavy for me and l just couldn’t digest them.

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A green juice made with the Cold Pressed juicer.

Part of the joy of drinking a green smoothie is that it is green!

A green smoothie can quickly turn a not so nice colour if you add certain ingredients to it such as raspberries, blueberries or blackberries. It could go a brown colour and will taste great, but won’t look so appetising.

Choosing your ingredients:

1. Start by picking your choice of greens. You can have just the one such as cos lettuce, kale, spinach or silverbeet or a mixture. Cos lettuce is so sweet and lovely and l love the smaller green spinach leaves.

2. What liquid are you going to have in your juice? I would advise either plain coconut water or filtered water.

3. Choose the fruit you are going to add. This could be banana, apple, peach, apricot, pear, mango, pineapple, orange and mandarin as examples. Citrus is wonderful as it will help your body absorb the iron from the greens.

4. Add a few interesting things to your smoothie. Limes and lemon’s with the skin on will give the smoothie a kick, while fresh ginger and herbs such as parsley and mint will help to enhance the flavour.

5. Add additional nutrients such as chia seeds, green powders or nuts.

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This smoothie has lots of greens, a few strawberries, chia seeds, activated almonds, orange and filtered water.

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This was such a filling smoothie and there are speckles of red through it from the strawberries.

A way to combine a green smoothie with a more colourful ingredients and still have it looking good is to have some fun putting it together as in the one below. Both the green and pink sections tasted wonderful, but when mixed together were a not so nice brown colour.

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A green smoothie with a dash of colour!

The green section is cos lettuce, banana, green apple and coconut water. The pink layer is strawberries, blueberries, acai berry powder, chia seeds, banana and coconut water. I make the green part first and pour it into two glasses and wash the blender, then make the pink part. The decorative pointy bits l do with a stainless steel straw and it looks nice to drink!

A smoothie can easily be a meal if you add in good sources of protein such as chia seeds and nuts. I drink them slowly as it is a lot of liquid going into the stomach all at once and adding the nuts and chia seeds make it a bit heavier and thicker as well as slowing down the digestion of the sugars in the drink. Sometimes l have a handful of nuts with the smoothie if it has a lot of fruit in it and this balances out the snack.

The best way to get started on your smoothie adventure is to fill up your fridge with lots of healthy fresh food. Here is a quick snapshot of my fridge as it looks most of the time.

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I really need a bigger fridge!

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Eat a fresh rainbow everyday!

Better than medication

Let nutrition be the focus of our eating habits.

There are so many ways to add colour to your meals, but the best way is to include a variety of fresh fruit and vegetables in your daily diet. The health benefits of eating a diet filled with a rainbow of colours is well known, but as l have tried to incorporate more vegetables into every meal, l have discovered the joy of eating food that is a range of bright colours. Not only are the range of flavours so amazing, but eating fresh colourful food is exciting, motivating and makes me feel happy.

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A green pancake for breakfast. Paleo recipe, gluten, dairy and sugar free filled with loads of parsley, bok choy, spinach and kale. Topped with activated almonds, organic coconut flakes and organic maple syrup. Served with fresh avocado and a daily magnesium drink.

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Breakfast pancake topped with fresh fruit, activated walnuts, coconut flakes and organic maple syrup.

A food as Medicine approach underpins my nutritional motivation, and everything l eat has a purpose and a high nutritional value. Eating a rainbow of fresh, healthy food will ensure you are consuming healthy vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and fibre that will help you on your wellness journey.

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Lunch: A beautiful fresh raw salad.

If your daily rainbow consists of peas, carrots and corn then it is time for a change. Our taste buds can get a bit lazy and are a victim of our comfort zone just like the rest of our habits are. Trying new foods can be challenging and it can take a number of goes at eating a food, or preparing it in a variety of ways before we become accustomed to its taste, texture and how it feels in our mouth when eating. There is also the challenge of learning how to prepare new foods, but if you add one in at a time then it can be exciting and an adventure.

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Lunch: Spiced beetroot & vegetable cauliflower rice, with tuna, avocado, tomato and seeds.

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Lunch: Poached free range eggs & bacon with fresh avocado and carrot strips.

The first step after deciding you want more colour in your food is to buy a selection so it is available for you when preparing meals. If you need guidance, use a recipe that appeals to you as a starting point. I have found Instagram to be an amazing source of inspiration as l can visually see what other people are cooking and eating which helps my motivation to try new foods.

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Cold pressed green juice made from bok choy, celery, green apple, lime and ginger.

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Amazing red juice of beetroot, celery, pear, carrot & fresh ginger.

Take ownership of your food intake and start experimenting with new ingredients. It can be fun and rewarding to sit down to a meal that you have lovingly prepared for yourself and family, especially if it has an array of lovely stimulating colours that gets the family talking about what you have made.

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Dinner: Baked fish on a bed of beetroot noodles with a vegetable stir fry.

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Dessert: Banana, apple & mandarin ice-cream made with the cold pressed juicer and an avocado based chocolate mousse.

I try to make my meals interesting, flavoursome, paleo friendly and highly nutritious. It takes planning, thought, time, motivation and a strong commitment to staying on track when life inevitably throws a few challenges into the mix. I live in a busy household with a husband and three children who are mostly non-paleo. This is a major challenge for me and l am educating them, but this nutritional and lifestyle path that l am following is not without its challenges.

Top tips:

  • Take an interest in what you are eating. Help with the shopping and cooking and plan your meals.
  • Be prepared. Have a plentiful supply of fresh fruit and vegetables in the house.
  • Try to incorporate colour into every meal, ideally by using mostly vegetables and some fruit with a focus on raw or lightly cooked where possible.
  • Have a positive attitude to trying something new and do some research by looking at magazines, online or speak to a friend who inspires you. Better still, study Nutrition as l have done!
  • Take it slowly. Change is difficult and our old habits are comfortable and easy to fall back into when a challenge comes our way. Slowly form new habits and incorporate them into your daily life.
  • Have fun with it! Go to local markets and explore. Experiment in the kitchen with the fresh ingredients.
  • Have a good attitude. See it as a diet of abundance rather than a diet of deprivation.
  • Think of your short and long term goals and make every bite you take a nutritious one.
  • Eat because you are hungry! Cut out the emotional, social, bored or habitual eating.

Follow these tips and you will be on the road to a healthier you!

If you have enjoyed this post please share it with a friend. I post daily on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook with pictures of the food l prepare and eat, as well as a few wellness tips and healthy resources. Thank you Carolyn

Rolled Chicken Breast with a tasty herb, nut and vegetable filling

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Just out of the oven and smelling amazing!

Rolled Chicken Breast: A lovely centre piece for a main dish. 

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Rolled chicken served with roasted swede chips, steamed brussel sprouts and roasted pumpkin slices topped with raw organic honey and organic sesame seeds.

This was my first attempt at using a chicken breast like this and l was motivated by all the wonderful roulage recipes l have seen on the television show Master Chef recently. While not to the same standard it was delicious and met all my dietary requirements.

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The free range chicken breasts flattened and topped with the filling.

I flattened two free range chicken breasts by placing each one inside cling wrap and pounding with a mallet. To do this l placed cling wrap on the chopping board, placed the washed meat on top and covered it with more cling wrap. I gently pounded the meat with a kitchen mallet and you could also use a rolling pin to gently get it a bit flatter at this point. I did this for each breast separately.

I then made a delicious filling in the food processor which was a handful of raw walnuts, a couple of spring onion tops (the green parts), two large brussel sprouts, 1 tablespoon of organic coconut oil, a handful of flat leaf parsley, a small handful of pepitas, ground black salt and Pink Himalayan Crystal Salt. I processed this until it was evenly chopped and then placed half on each chicken breast. I used organic coconut oil in this mix as l do not eat dairy but if you do eat dairy then an organic grass fed butter would be very nice in its place.

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The rolled and tied chicken breast.

I pulled the two sides of the breast together and wrapped some twine (cooking string) around the chicken as in the picture above, Be sure to tie it at each end and push the filling in as you go along. Place the rolled chicken on a baking tray lined with baking paper and drizzle generously with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and place in the oven. Cook until the chicken is cooked and then take the foil off and let it brown or place under the grill ensuring it doesn’t dry out. Carefully cut the string along the length of the chicken and remove. Let the chicken rest for a few minutes before serving. Each rolled chicken piece will serve a few people if you add vegetables or salad and l had a piece cold the next day which was lovely.

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Cold rolled chicken breast. Just as nice as when it was first cooked.

I cooked up some roasted swede chips and they were very delicious. I like their unusual taste and they were nice cold as well. Pumpkin dressed with honey and sesame seeds is really nice, but drizzle the honey on in the last five minutes and only quickly cook the sesame seeds so they don’t lose their nutrients.

I hope you enjoy this recipe. Experiment with the filling to suit your tastes and serve it with your favourite vegetables or salad.

If you have enjoyed this post please share it with a friend. I also share my recipes and wellness tips daily on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I would love you to follow me. Thanks Carolyn