Brandi Salad – Friday Food

fridayfood2.jpgIn honor of Brandi’s visit this week, I’m posting her favorite salad. We served it when she was here. This is a great salad for your health. It’s high in cruciferous vegetables which have anti-cancer properties.

Brandi Salad

2 cups chopped broccoli (organic, if possible)

2 cups chopped cauliflower (organic, if possible)

2 cups chopped celery (organic, if possible)

1/4 cup chopped carrots (organic, if possible)

1/4 cup chopped onion – green, red, white or yellow (organic, if possible)

optional, but a great Good for You-Naturally!™ addition – raw chopped pecans or walnuts – large handful

Toss all together.

Add dressing and mix well.

Dressing:

1/2 cup homemade mayonnaise

1/2 cup homemade ranch

extra pinch of garlic powder

(You could probably use 1 cup ranch only. It would be a little more “seasoned” than the mix above.)

Variation:

Substitute 1 1/2 cup fresh or frozen peas (uncooked) for the celery and carrots (but then it wouldn’t be Brandi’s Salad) 🙂

Tea Time

My favorite tea steeping mug! Special order yours today $20.

My favorite tea steeping mug! Special order yours today $20.

Teas are becoming much the rage now as a “healthy” beverage. I suppose as compared to coffee. I don’t buy it when it comes to true teas – Camellia Sinensis – black, green, oolong, white, etc. I’m not completely denying the claims of certain constituents in tea that are health promoting, but there are enough other properties – such as caffeine and tannins – that aren’t. So I don’t drink or recommend them.

We all know caffeine is a powerful stimulant. Some may like the temporary effects, but the effects on our health are also powerful – powerfully negative. Tannins too are destructive. They interfere with digestion and inhibit mineral absorption, such as calcium and iron, and have astringent constricting effects on your mucous membranes. Tannins negatively affect proteins, in your body and food.

So … if true teas (as well as coffee) are not really good choices, what is?

Herb teas have been my flavored Good for You-Naturally!™ drink of choice for many years. There are so many plants that make great tasting infusions for drinking, “tisanes”, and have many healthful properties without the negatives. You can enjoy great variety and choose according to your mood or need of the moment. In addition to avoiding the above negative components of true teas (and coffee) you also avoid all the added ingredients, calories and health destroyers present in them.

Good for You-Naturally!™ Simply Beverages has a whole section on herb teas, featuring some of our favorites. But here today I want to highlight one of the latest rages.

Rooibos tea has become very popular in recent years. It is also called red (bush) tea. Like herb teas, it is not a true tea. It is a tisane made from a plant, this one the a legume-family shrub in South Africa. Like other herb teas it is naturally has no caffeine. It does have trace amounts of tannins though.

The health benefits of Rooibos are:

It is calming and soothing, containing anti-spasmotic properties, good for colic or stomach cramping;

It contains anti-oxidents, boosts the immune system.

It has anti-allergic properties, is good for allergies, such as hay fever, asthma, and eczema.

It aids in health problems such as headaches, irritability,  nervous tension, insomnia, fevers, and hypertension.

Recent studies show it may have cardiovascular benefits*.

It also has anti-carcinogenic and anti-mutagenic and anti-inflammatory properties.

Honeybush tea is another South African herb tea, very similar in taste to Rooibos but sweeter. It also is caffeine-free and low in tannins, has anti-oxidants, blood sugar lowering properties, phytoestrogens, and is good for coughs.*

To make a Holiday Rooibos (or Honeybush) Chai –

Pour 1 cup boiling pure water over 1 Tbl. Rooibos.

Steep approx. 5 minutes.

Add non-milk and a bit of cinnamon, nutmeg, or cloves.*

Can also serve over ice as a Chilled Chai.

(When brewing regular Rooibos – not for Chai – use 1 tsp. per cup.)

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Special Order Organic Rooibos (1#/$19 – 1.5 oz. $6), Honeybush (1#/$16.50) and Tea Spot Steeping Mug ($20 – 16 oz. red, black, blue, or lime) or Steeping Cup ($16 – 8 oz. no handle) – contact us for invoice (address needed for shipping cost.)

Other brands that I haven’t tried, so I’m not endorsing – Rooibos at Amazon.com

Terrific Tender Turkey – Friday Food

fridayfood2.jpg Yesterday I fixed one of the best turkeys we’ve had for ThanksGiving. My sons had their part in it too. I’m not one for gamey taste of wild meats, but turkey has been an exception. It tastes great, not gamey. And this one turned out wonderful!

They breast them out when they clean them, so there isn’t a full turkey for a platter, just breast, thighs and legs. But it worked good for what I did.

If you have fresh wild turkey, give my recipe a try.

Lisa’s Crock Pot Wild Turkey

1 small onion, chopped (organic)

2-3 stalks celery, chopped (organic)

wild turkey pieces (breasts and legs)

dried parsley (organic)

garlic granules (organic)

vegetable bouillon (Rapunzel, organic – or Better Than Bouillon)

Dissolve bouillon cube in 1 cup hot pure water.

Put onion and celery in bottom of crock pot.

Place turkey pieces on top of veggies. Sprinkle with parsley and (lightly with) garlic. Pour bouillon over. Cook on high 5-7 hours. After done, use broth to make gravy – add flour (fresh ground, whole wheat) basil, salt and pepper.

BTW, we had a “traditional” looking store-bought turkey too. That one I cooked in a cooking bag in my electric roaster oven. It was good too, but not as good as the fresh one.

Hope you had a great ThanksGiving and a Good for You-Naturally!™ ThanksGiving feast. If not (the feast) stay tuned for more help in making Good for You-Naturally!™ lifestyle changes!

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A Fave Smoothie ~ Friday Food

fridayfood2.jpgYes, Friday Food is a bit late this week. What can I say? I have a family and home that come first. But I’ve been wanting to share more living food recipes with you. Take you beyond just grabbing a piece of fresh fruit, or veggie sticks, or tossing a salad.

Here is a quick delicious, living food recipe that can be varied in a myriad of ways. I won’t say this is my absolute favorite variation. I don’t know that I’ve found that yet. But this is certainly A favorite, and super simple.

Smoothies are a great way to get the needed quantity of greens in your diet when you just can’t eat any more salad. AND they don’t really taste like greens. Your fruit disguises them. Therefore they’re a great way to get greens into your children that you haven’t raised on greens, so they think they don’t like them.

Good for You-Naturally!™ Smoothie

2-3 organic oranges (juice them)

1 huge handful of organic spinach (I use baby spinach)

1 banana (organic if you can find them) – ripe or frozen

Pour your juice into your high powdered blender. Add your spinach. It should nearly fill your blender. Blend until smooth. Add your banana and again blend until smooth. (In my Bosch, I like adding my banana after my greens are smooth, especially if my banana is frozen and I want it to add a frozen “shake” like consistency. You don’t have to do this in the Blendtec or Vitamix.)

See? Super simple. Super delish. Super Good for You-Naturally!

Have a Blendtec or VitaMix? Great. It’ll take no time at all. Have a Bosch Kitchen Center? It’ll blend it right up. Have just a standard blender? It’ll work. Just may take a bit longer.

Mmm!

Learn more about Green Smoothies in Green Goodness ~ A Freedom & Simplicity™ Guide to Green Smoothies.

 

Sunny Spinach Salad – Friday Food

fridayfood2.jpgThis is a great change of pace salad, and super simple to make. I served this salad at a church dinner recently, and was asked to post the recipe.

Lisa’s Sunny Spinach Salad

1 bunch of organic seedless red grapes (washed and de-stemmed)

2 small to med. organic oranges (peeled, sectioned, and cut in half)

1-2 large handfuls of organic baby spinach (washed and dried)

handful of organic raw almonds (whirred in the blender, into bits – don’t whir too long or you’ll have almond butter)

Toss together with Dressing. You may want to reserve a few almond bits to garnish the top.

Dressing:

1-2 Tbl. organic raw honey

1/3 c. organic extra virgin olive oil

fresh squeezed organic orange juice from 1/2 orange

fresh squeezed organic lemon juice from 1/2 lemon

1/2 tsp. organic celery seed (non-irradiated)

Shake well. Pour over Salad and Toss.

(This was enough dressing for my salad. If your salad is much larger, you may need to double dressing ingredients.)

Confetti Quinoa – Friday Food

fridayfood2.jpgQuinoa (keen-wa) is an awesome grain. It’s a whole grain, Good for You, and cooks in only 20 minutes (rather than the 1 hour plus of most other whole grains.) My children call it fish eye-balls because it is a small round grain that forms a little spiral when it cooks. For a quick, Good for You, wholegrain dish that tastes delish try:

Lisa’s Good for You-Naturally!™ Confetti Quinoa

I cook this in my Miracle brand electric stainless steel rice cooker. Other ways of cooking it may require different proportion of water. Most stovetop recipes say twice as much water as quinoa.

  • 4 c. quinoa, organic
  • 5 1/2 c. pure water
  • medium chopped onion (organic)
  • 2-3 stalks celery, chopped (organic)
  • a big squirt of Bragg’s Liquid Aminos

Takes approx. 15-20 min to cook. (only 2 minutes if you cook in a pressure cooker)

Steam 16 oz. frozen organic mixed vegetables (or a nice fresh mix, if you’re doing better than me today.) I use Cascadian Farms which has diced carrots, peas, and corn. (If you’re doing better than me today, you could also saute your onion and celery in a bit of extra virgin olive oil before adding to the quinoa.)

When both are finished, mix together and serve with a big leafy green salad. The 4 cups of dry grain makes more than enough for our family of 8. As our boys get older, we’re having to prepare bigger batches of everything.

My Weekly Yogurt Post

🙂 Yep, I’m posting on yogurt again. I told you last week I’d let you know how the raw goat milk yogurt comes out. Delicious! (Click here for more traditional yogurt making instructions.)

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Raw Goat Milk Yogurt - plain and strawberry

Raw Goat Milk Yogurt – plain and strawberry

Here’s how I did it.

Raw Goat Milk Yogurt

Prepare containers and utensils. Wash, rinse very well, pour boiling water over/into them.

1 qt. raw goat milk – heat gently on stove to 110°F. on candy or other food thermometer. (No more. You want it to remain raw.)

Whisk in: 3-4 Tbl. organic, natural plain yogurt with live cultures or recommended amount of dry yogurt culture.

Dump water out of yogurt containers and pour yogurt in. I used the containers that work in my dehydrator since that is where I cultured my yogurt this time. You can use a quart glass jar or smaller glass jars or a wide mouth glass or stainless steel thermos. Put lid(s) on.

Put in warm place to culture. You need a place that will keep a steady temp of 95-110°F. As I said, this time I used my dehydrator, that has a thermostat control on it. Culture 8-10 hours, until it sets up. Other ways you can culture yogurt are listed in a previous post on yogurt that has complete instructions and various uses.( I DO NOT find a crock pot, even on keep warm with the lid off to hold a low enough temp.) More yogurt posts here.

My additions for flavored yogurt per serving – all optional. Add 1 or more. (adjust amounts to your liking):

  • 1/2 tsp. raw organic agave nectar (or raw honey)
  • a couple drops of pure organic vanilla extract/flavoring
  • 2-3 fresh or frozen (thawed) strawberries, mashed up – or 1-2 Tbl. other fruit

Enjoy! I am.

OK,  you do need a source of raw goat’s milk for this. You can substitute raw cow’s milk if you have a source/use cow’s milk. (I recommend not, but raw IS SO MUCH better for you than pasteurized, homogenized, chemically, feed-lot raised, …)

Want more help for yogurt making? Get our dirt-cheap Freedom & Simplicity™ Guide to Yogurt Making.

GOCO Salve

OK, this is really called GOOT* but in my book/house it is GOCO and it is good for what ails you. It has all the great health benefits of its ingredients – garlic, olive oil and VCO (organic extra virgin coconut oil). It is anti-infective, anti-viral, anti-parasitic, anti-fungal, anti-all those bad microbial things. 🙂

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GOCO Salve - good for what ails you

GOCO Salve – good for what ails you

Basically it is equal amounts of the 3 ingredients, blended together in your blender/food processor. Rub it on chests, feet, sinuses, in noses, in ears. Great for colds, flu, athlete’s feet,  – “whatever ails you”!

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The recipe is 3 Tbl. of each. Melt your VCO. Blend your garlic with the oils – blend it up good. Put it in a jar.

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Here’s how I did it:

GOCO Salve

Measure 3 Tbl. VCO into a small glass jar with a wide mouth. (Thanks Angie for the baby food jars! They are coming in handy.)

Pour very hot water into a small bowl. Set jar of VCO in the bowl of hot water to melt the VCO. NEVER microwave VCO.

Mince fresh garlic with garlic mincer/press. It’ll take approx. 3-4 heads to get 3 Tbl. I got about 1 Tbl. per head of garlic.

Put melted VCO, minced garlic, and 3 Tbl. olive oil into food processor (or blender.) (3 ingredients, 3 Tbl. each – easy to remember recipe!) Process until garlic is very fine, and mixed in.

Pour into small jar. Cap.

Let set out on the counter for a few hours – to really infuse those oils with the garlic. I then refrigerated it (as I think you’re suppose to). But I keep it out of the fridge when actively using it – fridge makes it TOO hard, IMO.

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More info at Jacque’s website, where I got the original recipe. [website no longer available] We’ve used fresh garlic, and garlic/olive oil for years, but are new to the addition of VCO and its great health benefits added to these. I’m glad to have this, but not hoping we get to try it out soon.

*Note: I haven’t figured out why it is called GOOT – Garlic, (Olive) Oil, (VC) Oil, ?? What am I missing here? Thus my name GOCO = Garlic – Olive – Coconut Oil.

Country Pot Pie – Friday Food

fridayfood2.jpgAnother request from Lisa. And another that works great in the crock pot.

Country (Veggie) Pot Pie

Saute in 3 Tbl. olive oil (organic, extra virgin):

1 small onion (organic), diced

3 stalks celery (organic), chopped

In large stock pot or crock pot add:

  • 8 cups diced potatoes (organic)
  • 2 cups sliced carrots (organic)
  • 2 cups peas (organic – fresh, shelled if available, otherwise frozen)
  • 2 tsp. dried parsley (non-irradiated, organic)
  • 1 tsp. dried basil (non-irradiated, organic)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth (or pure water with Rapunzel vegetable bouillon)
  • squirt of Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
  • sauted onions and celery

Cook until veggies are soft.

Stir in: 1/2 cup whole wheat flour (fresh ground, organic), shaken in 1 cup pure water to thicken.

S&P if desired.

If made in a stock pot, transfer to casserole dish or 9×13. (If made in crock pot, you can leave it there.) Top with Biscuits. To serve place biscuit on plate (we slice them in half), then ladle veggies on top of it.

We always make lots of extra biscuits to eat with butter and all-fruit (no sweeteners or additives) jam, with this. Also a nice green veggie salad.

Biscuits

Mix together:

  • 6 cups fresh ground, organic, whole wheat flour
  • 3 Tbl. baking powder (non-aluminum containing brand, like Rumford’s)
  • 1 tsp. unrefined salt (Real®, himalayan, or celtic salt)

Cut in:

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter (organic, if you can)

Add:

  • 2-2 1/4 cups pure water

Stir until ball forms.

Roll 1/2 – 3/4″ thick. Cut into circles (with a glass or biscuit cutter).

Back on ungreased cookie sheet (stoneware is awesome!) for 12-15 minutes at 425°.

Chick ‘n Noodles – Friday Food

fridayfood2.jpgA friend asked for this recipe this week, so here it is. (Just for you Lisa.) But Friday is quickly running out – and so am I, with another busy day tomorrow, so… this will be my regular-way-of-cooking instructions, i.e. no precise measurements.  🙂 We eat this either thickened, and served over mashed potatoes, or thin as chicken noodle soup.

Lisa’s Chick ‘n Noodles

Cook a whole chicken – either in crock pot over night or in boiling water on the stove. After it’s done, because we get really big tender (organic) chickens, I can usually remove the breasts for use in another meal. I de-bone, de-skin and shred the rest back into the broth. (In the crock it will just be the juices, so better for thick chick ‘n noodles – but either way works.)

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Add a diced onion, a few stalks of celery chopped, a couple carrots – chopped or shredded. A small handful of dried parsley (approx 2 Tbl. or so) and about 1 tsp. dried basil. You can also add a couple of cloves of minced garlic, especially if you’re fighting colds and such. Add water to cover and simmer.

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Make your noodles – recipe for whole wheat egg noodles another day. We make ours thick and wide – chewy, like dumplings.

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If you cooked the chicken in the crock pot, add more water to the chicken and veggies, plenty to boil the noodles in. Bring water to a boil. Add your fresh noodles. The flour left on the noodles when you put them in to cook will help thicken it up. If your broth is pretty weak, add other broth or soup stock instead of water, or a couple of Rapunzel vegetable bouillon cubes.

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After the noodles are cooked, you can shake up some (whole wheat) flour in a bit of cold water and stir it in to thicken the broth up more, for serving over mashed potatoes. If making it for soup, use plenty of water/broth, and leave it thin. We usually also add peas, especially if serving it as soup. (2-3 cups maybe) I don’t cook them in it all day (don’t like dull, mushy peas) but rather add them 15-30 minutes before serving. Add salt and pepper, as needed.

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If making thick Chick ‘n Noodles you can do this instead: Boil your noodles in a separate pot of water, with a smaller amount of water in your chicken and vegetables. Add your noodles to the chicken and veggies after they’ve cooked, and enough water to barely cover, bring to a boil. Then thicken this broth.

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Enjoy on a chilly night with homemade whole wheat bread, and carrot/celery sticks.