Pantry Makeover: How to Grocery Shop.

It has taken me a little longer than I expected get this post together, but I’m glad I waited. After doing a couple pantry makeovers, I have better insight to foods people have in their pantries and I feel I’m able to make better suggestions.

Here are some food rules for your next trip to the grocery store.

Food Rules: If it’s advertised on TV, or in the media, RUN! Cheap foods are heavily promoted and lead to poor health.

Eat foods made from ingredients you can picture in their raw state of nature.

Shop locally, find a farmers market near you and check it out.

If you have space, purchase a freezer. This way you can purchase organic grass-fed meat in bulk.  That will reduce the cost of the meat. Look for deals, last year Whole Foods had grass-fed ground beef on sale for $4 a lb. I purchased 15 pounds and froze it.

You can’t supplement a poor diet. Don’t spend money on supplements then eat a poor quality diet.

Shopping Guidelines:
Shop the perimeter of the store. 80% of what you purchase should be from the perimeter of the store. This is where you will find real foods such as fruits, vegetables, meat, fish and dairy.

When purchasing dairy, if you can afford it consider raw, organic dairy. When milk is pasteurized the heat kills important enzymes as well as damaging or destroying vitamins and amino acids. For resources check out www.realmilk.com. The next best diary option is organic, non-homogenized milk(Straus and Trader Joe’s sell this). The third best option is organic full fat milk.

The homogenization process forces milk through a fine filter at pressure equal to 4,000 pounds per square inch, decreasing the fat globules. By making the fat globules smaller it allows certain substances to bypass digestion. Proteins that are usually usually predigested stomach, are not broken down, increasing the chances of incomplete protein digestion in the small intestine. This can lead to a milk allergy or intolerance.

Is organic dairy really worth the extra money? Yes, and here’s why. Most dairies inject their cows with hormones to produce more milk. This can cause their udders to drag to the ground, causing an infection, which they then treat with antibiotics. Antibiotics that end up in your milk.

Yogurt. Same rules apply, purchase full-fat organic yogurt from grass-fed cows.

Butter. Look for butter that comes from grass-fed cows. Trader Joe’s carries Kerrygold butter which comes from grass-fed cows.

Creamers. Most dairy creamers contain trans-fats.  Healthier options would be cream or whole milk.

Meat. When shopping for meat, your best option is grass-fed. Look for chicken and pork that was raised outdoors and pasture-fed. Same thing for eggs look for eggs pasture-fed hens (usually at your local farmers market) If the previous items are not available or unaffordable try and locate organic meat and free-range eggs. If your unable to afford those then consume less conventional meat and when you do consume it remove the fat since thats were toxins are stored. Grass-fed meat is higher in Vitamin E, Beta Carotene, Conjugated Linoleic Acid, and the omega 3 to omega 6 ratio is favorable compared to grain fed meat which is much higher in Omega 6’s. For further information read: The Advantages of Grass Fed Beef and Dairy

Fish. Avoid farm-raised fish. Farm raised fish are fed grains, soy and receive antibiotics along with other drugs. Look for wild-caught fish. The Monterey Bay Aquarium has a pocket seafood guide you can download here.

Produce. The best produce your going to find is from your local farmer’s market or a health food store. There you will be able to find local organic produce. If you can’t find organic, your next best bet is produce that was locally grown without pesticides. If that is unavailable to you, I would look for frozen organic, then regular produce and make sure that you wash it with produce wash or make your own produce wash with vinegar and water. Here’s a list of the 12 most heavily contaminated crops and the 12 least: The Dirty Dozen.

Fats and Oils. Avoid fats, oils and products that contain any of the following terms: Refined, Hydrogenated, Partially Hydrogenated and Cold-Processed. Look for Organic, First-cold pressed or Cold-Pressed, Expeller-Pressed, Unrefined, and Extra Virgin. The best type of oils for cooking are: Lard, Ghee, Beef and Lamb Tallow, Chicken, Duck and Goose Fat,Coconut Oil, and Red Palm Oil. For quick stir-frying, or light sauteing olive oil is safe to use. If you purchase packaged foods check the ingredients for vegetable oils. During the last pantry makeover that I completed, my client was amazed at all of the vegetable oils found in the packaged foods she purchased. What’s wrong with these supposedly healthy vegetable oils? According to Ray Peat, Ph.D., a physiologist who has studied hormones and dietary fats since 1968 polyunsaturated fatty acids or PUFAs in vegetable seed oils are the bane of human health — they actually cause cancer, diabetes, obesity, premature aging, thrombosis, arthritis, and immunodeficiencies. Their only appropriate use, he says, is as ingredients in paints and varnishes. For further information on how damaging vegetable oils are check out Unhealthy Vegetable Oils?

Sweeteners. The one sweetener that every pantry seems to have nowadays is agave. I tell every client to throw away the agave! Every client says “but I thought agave was healthy!” How agave was originally processed and how it’s processed today is completely different. From the Weston A Price Foundation here’s how agave is produced:

The process by which agave glucose and inulin are converted into “nectar” is similar to the process by which corn starch is converted into HFCS.35 The agave starch is subject to an enzymatic and chemical process that converts the starch into a fructose-rich syrup—anywhere from 70 percent fructose and higher according to the agave nectar chemical profiles posted on agave nectar websites. 36 (One agave manufacturer claims that his product is made with “natural” enzymes.) That’s right, the refined fructose in agave nectar is much more concentrated than the fructose in HFCS. For comparison, the high fructose corn syrup used in sodas is 55 percent refined fructose. (A natural agave product does exist in Mexico, a molasses type of syrup from concentrated plant nectar, but availability is limited and it is expensive to produce.)

According to Bianchi(Managing Director and CEO of Adept Solutions, Inc., a globally recognized food and beverage development company), agave “nectar” and HFCS “are indeed made the same way, using a highly chemical process with genetically modified enzymes. They are also using caustic acids, clarifiers, filtration chemicals and so forth in the conversion of agave starches.” The result is a high level of highly refined fructose in the remaining syrup, along with some remaining inulin.

The sweeteners that I recommend are honey, preferably raw (your local farmers market is a great place to purchase local raw honey) Maple Syrup (Trader Joe’s sells organic Maple Syrup for a decent price) or organic sugar. I like the Wholesome Sweeteners brand they make a great line of organic sugars (just avoid the agave) most of the sugars they sell are fair trade certified. To find out what fair trade certified is check out wholesome sweetners website: Wholesome Sweeteners. One natural sweetener, that I haven’t made an official decision on is Stevia. I think it’s too new to make any official decisions on whether or not it’s a safe sweetener. If you do decide to use it, the best way would be to purchase a stevia plant and use the leaves. Otherwise you want to make sure that you purchase the green stevia, since it hasn’t been bleached. I’ve tried stevia and am not a big fan, it has a funky taste. In my opinion your much better off using one of the sweeteners I mentioned prior. Here’s some more information on Stevia: Dangers of Stevia.

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Pantry Makeover Part 1

Happy New Year! I hope everyone has a wonderful year. In the past, I would  always vow to lose weight and eat healthier. Of course I had no idea what healthy eating was, and never made any long term changes. I’m going to list some tips to improve your health. It may seem a little overwhelming at first, so try to make one change a week or even a month.

The first step you need to take is to clean out your pantry and your refrigerator. Take everything out of your pantry and check to see if you find these following  ingredients:

1. HFCS. High fructose corn syrup is in almost everything today, breads, condiments, snack foods. Items you think that wouldn’t even contain high fructose corn syrup such as whole-wheat bread, Nutri-grain bars, and cereals such as Raisin Bran, and Special K. Why should you avoid high fructose corn syrup? High fructose corn syrup is a sugar substitute that is a mixture of fructose and corn syrup. It’s highly processed, and it’s most likely made from genetically modified corn. How safe do you think a product is when a company spends a large amount of money trying to convince consumers that it is safe? Reminds me of the cigarette industry and how doctors once recommended smoking.  If a company has to make commercials advertising how safe their product is, you should use your skepticism to your benefit.

2. Sugar substitutes. This is the Splenda, the Equal, the Sweet n Low. What are the ingredients in these franken-sugars? For Sweet’N Low it’s: nutritive dextrose, 3.6% soluble saccharin, cream or tarter, and calcium silicate. For Equal it’s Dextrose with maltodextrin, aspartame. For Splenda it’s Dextrose, Maltodextrin, and Sucralose. Studies have shown that artificial sugars trick the body into craving more calories. For further information on how sugar substitutes affect the body there’s a documentary called Aspartame: Sweet Misery A Poisoned World

3. Frankenfoods. If a third grader can’t pronounce it or or your great grandmother wouldn’t recognize an ingredient, do you really want to put it in your body? Examples: Artificial colors such as: Blue No. 1, Citrus Red No 2, FD&C Blue No. 1. Benzoate Preservatives which are listed as BHT, BHA, and TBHQ, Olestra, Shortening, Hydrogenated and Partially Hydrogenated Oils. The fake chicken nuggets, and the imitation cheese. If it’s not an ingredient that you would keep in your pantry, then you shouldn’t be purchasing products made with those ingredients.

4. Trans Fats. What exactly are trans-fats? Trans fats are produced by adding hydrogen to vegetable oil via hydrogenation. The process turn oils into a solid making them less likely to spoil. How do you know if a food contains trans fats? It will list partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, or it will say shortening.  If a label says fully or completely hydrogenated that means its not a trans-fat, if it says hydrogenated, it probably contains some trans-fat. If a food states that it’s trans-fat free, you should still read the ingredients. Companies are allowed to put a small amount of trans-fat into foods and label them as trans-fat free, so be aware. According to Dr. Mary Enig the consumption of trans-fatty acids from partially hydrogenated vegetable fats and oils have many adverse affects on health such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, immunity, reproduction and lactation, and obesity.

5. Avoid Low-fat, Lite, or Non-Fat foods. From 1910 to 1970 the amount of traditional animal fat consumed in the American diet went from 83% to 62%, and butter consumption went from 18 pounds per person a year to 4 pounds per person a year. Yet obesity levels haven’t improved. During the same period the percentage of dietary vegetable oils such as margarine, shortening and refined oils increased about 400%, and the consumption of sugar and processed foods increased about 60%. Dr. Walter Willett, Harvard School of Public Health’s chairman of the department of nutrition, has claimed that “Fat is not the problem” To read more about fat check out the article: Harvard School of Public Health: “Fat is not the problem” Low fat dairy products such as skim milk are deficient in Vitamin A and D. This occurs because these vitamins are fat-soluble vitamins, so by removing the fat, your also removing the vitamins. Then synthetic vitamin D is added back in. Ask yourself this, do you think vitamins found naturally or created in a lab or easier to absorb? Another issue with low fat milk is that dried milk powder is usually added to low fat milk. Due to the spray drying process the dried milk powder usually contains oxidized or damaged cholesterol.

6. Genetically Modified foods. The United States produces 68% of the worlds genetically modified crops. The most common genetically modified foods are soybeans, rape, sweet corn and cotton seed oil. According to the USDA 93% of soybeans are genetically modified, 70% of corn, and 78% of cotton is genetically modified. The biotech industry, which happens to be supported by the US government, doesn’t want foods containing GMO’s to be labeled. If the manufacturer doesn’t want you to know what’s in your food, you should wonder why. For more information on why to avoid Genetically Modified foods, check this article.

7. Grains. “The story of grains goes part and parcel with the story of bread, neither of which the human machine is designed to function optimally on.”-Paul Chek  Human beings digestive systems were not designed to consume grains, it’s estimated that 40% of people have some form of gluten sensitivity. In my opinion there is no such thing as healthy grains, but I know most people aren’t willing to give up grains, to me the least offensive type of bread is sourdough since the fermentation process breaks down the phytic acid. Phytic acid blocks the absorption of phosphorus, calcium, zinc, magnesium and iron in the grain. If you are looking to achieve optimal health though throw out the bread, cereal, crackers, cookies, pastries, and snack bars while you are at it.

Within the next couple days I will post another blog about what you should look for when you go grocery shopping.

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Apple Cranberry Gingersnap Crust Pie(GF,CF, and Nut Free)

I baked my first gluten-free, casein-free, nut-free pie on Thanksgiving, and it turned out pretty good. I’m including the blog post in addition to the video, to make a couple tweaks to the recipe, to make it even better. If you watch the video, try not to laugh too hard, it’s my first video. ;-p

  • Ingredients for the Crust:
  • Gluten-Free Gingersnap cookies 8 ounces
  • 4-5 Tablespoons of Ghee/Coconut Oil(add more if needed)
  • Ingredients for the Filling:
  • 2-3 apples, pared and cored
  • 8-10 oz of cranberries
  • 4 Tablespoons of Organic Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • Pinch of Organic Cane Sugar

Preheat Oven to 375F. If you have a food Processor place the Gingersnaps and ghee or slightly melted coconut oil into processor and process until finely ground. The recipe that I had called for 2 tablespoons butter, which wasn’t nearly enough. I went a little overboard and added too much. If you don’t have coconut oil or don’t want to add it, that’s fine. I just added it in at the last minute. Start with 4 tablespoons of ghee, and mix in more if needed. Place the mixture into a 8″ pie plate, and bake for 5-8 minutes, remove and cool the crust.

For the filling your either going to place the apples into a food processor or chop them up into small pieces, then add cranberries, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and mix throughly. I used 2 apples and 8 ounces of cranberries, and felt that there wasn’t enough filling, so if you like more filling use 3 apples and 10 ounces of cranberries. Sprinkle with the organic cane sugar, I just used a pinch. Bake for 35 minutes or until tender. Spoon the filling into the crust and serve immediately. I was so excited about my pie, that I forgot to snap a picture of it before I served it.

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FatHead, Should you be avoiding Saturated Fat?

“The more saturated fat one ate, the more cholesterol one ate, the more calories one ate, the lower the person’s serum (blood) cholesterol.”-William Castelli M.D. Framingham Director

One of my favorite documentaries is FatHead. I’ve probably watched this movie 10 times, and when I first received it I had family members and friends watch it also. If you consume low-fat dairy, margarine, canola oil, soy oil or any other vegetable oils, and believe that saturated fats should be avoided or minimized then you need to see this film.

FatHead was developed as a rebuttal to Supersize Me. The film creator Tom Naughton, created the documentary to show that saturated fats are not the cause of heart disease, obesity, and type two diabetes. He decided to consume fast food and only fast food for 28 days, to see if it affected his cholesterol, weight, and overall health. He decided to stick to 2000 calories a day, and limit carbohydrates to 100 grams a day. He interviewed Al Sears, M.D., Dr’s Michael and Mary Dan Eades., Dr. Mary Enig, and Sally Fallon president of the Weston A Price foundation.

He starts off discussing certain diets that he tried such as a vegetarian diet, the Pritikin diet where your fat is to remain under 10% (Pritikin had leukemia and later committed suicide.) He also tried the Fit For Life diet where you follow food combining rules, and only consumed juice and fruit until noon. He felt great at first until the sugar rush wore off and he crashed. Sound familiar?

How did Americans become misled about saturated fat? It started with Ansel Keys in the late 1950s, he was investigating cardiovascular disease, and was determined to prove that saturated fats cause heart disease. He published a study displaying 7 countries. Showing that countries that consumed high fat diets had a higher incidence of heart disease, and those that consumed a low fat diet had low incidences of heart disease. In truth, he studied 22 countries there were countries that consumed high amounts of saturated fat and had low incidences of heart disease, and there were countries that consumed low amounts of saturated fat had and had high incidences of heart disease.

George Mann M.D. a Framingham Researcher stated that the greatest scientific scam of the century, perhaps any century is that heart attacks are correlated with high cholesterol, and that individuals with low or normal levels are just as prone to heart attacks, therefore there is no relation. What could be causing these issues? Dr. Mary Eades says the real issue is inflammation, this could be from lifestyle factors such as smoking, high levels of stress, high blood pressure, or dietary choices such as refined carbohydrates, and consuming too much sugar.

The Center for Science in the Public Interest(CSPI)  ran with the lipid hypothesis and deemed the term “artery-clogging” fat. The CSPI has been advocating a plant based diet since they were formed in 1971. One of their accomplishments was banning the use of beef tallow to fry french fries in 1989, which were replaced with tran-fats(they later called upon the FDA to label all foods that contain cholesterol-raising trans-fats.) One of the founders, Michael Jacobson who is also the executive director is a vegetarian and sits on the national board of the animal-rights oriented “Great American Meatout.”  On the CSPI website they have a section called Eating Green, which advocates consuming more plant-based foods and less meat and dairy to extend you health. All though the CSPI considers themselves to provide useful, objective information on food, alcohol and health I feel their main goal is to spread their vegetarian agenda.

One of the people interviewed is Al Sears M.D., who states that are natural preferences are sweet, salty, and fat, and that these are the foods that are good for us. When were talking sweets, I don’t mean a candy bar, but fruit or underground vegetables such as yams, sweet potatoes, beets, and carrots. That the fat we consumed from the beginning of time was primarily saturated fat, and that is the type of fat we should be consuming.

What is cholesterol and what does it do? Cholesterol is vital for living, without it you would be dead. Your brain and nervous system is full of cholesterol. Almost all of your hormones are made from cholesterol.  Guess what’s related to low cholesterol? Depression, anxiety, suicide, hyperthyroidism, liver disease, malabsorption, and malnutrition.

So what about LDL and HDL? Should you be concerned if you have high LDL? LDL and HDL are not cholesterol, they are proteins that carry cholesterol through your blood. LDL carries cholesterol from your liver to your tissues, and HDL carries old cholesterol back through your liver where it’s recycled. According to Mrs. Eades if you consume more saturated fat, then it will raise your HDL. I can personally attest to to this.  In September of 2008 my HDL was 66. In December of 2009, after increasing my intake of saturated fat my HDL was 82. The problem with looking at LDL, is that there’s two different types there’s the small dense ones type B LDL which are known to be harmful, and then there’s the second type the big fluffy ones called Type A which are of no harm. You can have your doctor order a blood test called polyacrylamide gradient gel electrophoresis which measures particle size and determines whether a person has blood cholesterol LDL pattern A or LDL pattern B.

At the end of the movie there are bonus interviews that I recommend you watch. If you want to watch a couple more trailers for the film click here.

Disclaimer: I am not advocating a diet of fast food, and I highly recommend people view Food Inc. Which is available to watch instantly on Netflix.

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Coconut Flour Muffins

Ingredients

Forgot to add the coconut oil to the picture

Coconut Flour Muffins, are my favorite thing to bake. I’m always changing the recipe, depending on what I have on hand, and which fruits are available.

 

 

 

 

The Basic Recipe is as follows:

  • Ingredients:
  • 1/4th cup of coconut flour
  • 1/4th teaspoon of baking powder(preferably the non-aluminum type)
  • 1/4th cup of coconut milk, or regular milk
  • 2-3 Tablespoons of Coconut Oil/Butter melted (I almost always use both)
  • 3 eggs
  • pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a bowl mix together eggs, coconut oil/butter and milk. Next add in the coconut flour, baking powder, salt and mix together, then add in whatever else you like, applesauce, shredded coconut, vanilla extract, fruit, chocolate. Once mixed place into muffin tins and bake for 20-25 minutes. The recipe makes 6-7 muffins. Since every oven is different though, if it’s your first time making them check them after 15 minutes. Once they are starting to brown on the edges, pull them out.

Variations:

Apple-Cherry Persimmon. My latest coconut flour muffins had apples, persimmons and cherries. I used 3/4th of an apple diced, 1 Fuyu persimmon diced, and for the cherries/coconut milk, I make coconut milk fruit ice cubes that I snack on, last time I mixed the coconut milk with frozen cherries. So I pulled out 3 coconut milk ice cubes and added them. I then used 1/4th a teaspoon or so of pumpkin pie spice, a small handful of shredded coconut, a teaspoon of of honey and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.

Figgy Muffins- 8 small figs or 3-4 small ones, 1/4th cup of applesauce, 1/4th a teaspoon of cinnamon, 1 1/2 t of balsamic vinegar, a teaspoon of vanilla and freshly grated nutmeg.

Pumpkin Muffins- 6-8 ounces of pumpkin, 1/2 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice, teaspoon of vanilla, 1-2 T of maple syrup, or honey. These would be good with dark chocolate and/or dried cranberries, I purchase a dark chocolate bar and slice it up and add it in, last time I made these I added bacon(no chocolate) and that was a good mixture.

Banana Chocolate Muffins. Use 1-2 ripe bananas depending on how sweet you want them, chop up some dark chocolate and mix it together with a little vanilla, and maybe some nutmeg or cinnamon.

Some other things you could try are adding in are: 8 ounces of fresh or frozen(0rganic) fruit such as cherries, blueberries, blackberries or a mix of berries. You can make a savory muffin by adding a little more salt and use some herbs such as: rosemary, thyme, oregano, basil, or anything else you think might be tasty.

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Chili-Maple Syrup Delicata Squash with Pears and Persimmons

Delicata Squash

I purchased delicata squash for the first time last week, unsure how to prepare it I found a recipe in my Eating Well magazine, I made a couple tweaks to the recipe.  I was told delicata squash is nicknamed the sweet potato squash, since it’s similar in size. Winter squash is a good source of Vitamin A(in the form of beta-carotene), Vitamin C, potassium, fiber, and manganese. Source: WHFoods

  • Ingredients:
  • a 1 lb. delicata squash
  • 1 pear sliced, and 1 persimmon sliced(or 2 pears)
  • 3-4 slices of bacon                            
  • 2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon of Maple Syrup
  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of chili powder
  • 2-3 tablespoons of Chicken Stock or Water

Preheat oven to 425* F. Cut the squash in half, remove the seeds. Cut squash into 1/4th inch slices. In a bowl mix together squash, sliced fruit, salt and pepper. You can either place the mixture onto a cooking sheet or place it in a casserole dish. Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until tender, stirring once or twice. Next step is to cook the bacon, you can either cook it in a pan, or bake it in the oven. If you bake it in the oven, take 2-3 teaspoons of the fat that’s collected and place it into a large skillet, if you prepare the bacon in the skillet, remove the bacon once cooked and leave the bacon fat in there. Over medium heat stir in chicken stock/water, chili powder, and maple syrup. Add the squash and fruit, toss to coat and cook until the liquid becomes syrupy. Crumble the bacon on top.

Not the best picture, but very tasty.

This dish turned out really well, I had a friend over for dinner, and he probably would have eaten the entire dish, had I let him. It’s simple to make, and would be a great side dish for Thanksgiving.

This post is part of Real Food Wednesday.

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Chicken Stock: How to Make it and the Benefits

Chicken stock or broth is very nutritious, simple to make, and something I think no freezer should be without. I use the Nourishing Traditions recipe.
Chicken Stock Ingredients:
2-3 lbs of bony chicken parts, such as necks, backs, breastbones, and wings or 1 whole chicken.
Chicken Feet (Optional)
4 quarts of cold filtered water
2 tablespoons of vinegar(I use ACV)
1 large onion coarsely chopped or onion skins
2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 celery sticks, coarsely chopped
1 bunch parsley

Place all ingredients excluding the parsley in a stock pot. If using a whole chicken, its recommended that you remove the neck, fat glands and the gizzards from the cavity. I highly recommend that you use chicken feet, which will produce a gelatinous stock. I use a dozen chicken feet. I purchase them from the farmers market, another good source is Whole Foods(I would call first). I usually purchase 2 dozen at a time, and freeze the other dozen. If you roast chickens, keep your bones and use them to make stock, I almost always have a bag of frozen chicken bones in my freezer. Any poultry bones you have will work: turkey, chicken, duck, cornish game hens. After placing all ingredients, excluding the parsley in the stock pot let it stand for 30 minutes to an hour. By adding vinegar it helps extract minerals from the bones.

Bring to a boil, and remove the scum that rises to the top. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 12-24 hours. I used to let mine sit for 12 hours, but the last two times I did it for 24 hours and it produced a much more flavorful and gelatinous stock. 10 minutes prior to turning the stove off, place the parsley in the pot. This will add additional mineral ions to the broth. I almost always forget this step! If you use a whole chicken, after an hour remove the meat from the chicken. You can use the chicken for soup, salads, enchiladas, omelets or curries.

How I strain my stock

Strain the stock into a large bowl, I place cheesecloth in the strainer it catches more, and it makes it easier to clean up. Now you can place the bowl into the fridge until the fat rises to the top and congeals. Then remove the fat, and reserve the stock in covered containers in the freezer or in the refrigerator. If you leave it in the fridge it’s good for a couple days. I used to do this step, but not anymore. I just place the stock into mason jars, and then place it into the fridge or freezer, when placing the jars in the freezer do not put the lids on, until the stock is frozen, this will prevent the jars from cracking and seek Mason Freezer Glass Jars.

After 24 hours.

If you place the jars in the refrigerator, you will develop that layer of fat on top so it can be removed once chilled, or when you go to use it. Depending on what you use your stock for will help you decide if you need to remove the fat, I primarily use mine to make soup, and since I use organic free-range chickens, I know that the fat is healthy and since fat=flavor, I think it makes my soups taste a little better. If your going to be drinking the stock by itself, then I would recommend letting the fat come to the top and scraping it off. For onions I save my onion skins and place them in a bag in the freezer and if the bag is full, I use only onion skins, you can also freeze carrot tops, along with the tops and bottoms of celery. You can also freeze the stock in ice cube trays, or muffin trays and store them in a bag in the freezer.

Made 14 cups of stock

Now that it’s cold season, it’s especially important to have homemade chicken stock on hand. Stock contains minerals, which are: calcium. magnesium, phosphorus, silicone, sulphur, and trace minerals. Research has shown that chicken soup helps break up congestion and eases the flow of nasal secretions. Irwin Ziment, M.D., pulmonary specialist and professor at the UCLA School for Medicine, says chicken soup contains drug-like agents similar to those in modern cold medicines. For example, an amino acid released from chicken during cooking chemically resembles the drug acetylcysteine, prescribed for bronchitis and other respiratory problems.

If you use chicken feet, your stock should gel when it cools. According to the Weston Price foundation here are some of the benefits of gelatin: “The French were the leaders in gelatin research, which continued up to the 1950s. Gelatin was found to be useful in the treatment of a long list of diseases including peptic ulcers, tuberculosis, diabetes, muscle diseases, infectious diseases, jaundice and cancer. Babies had fewer digestive problems when gelatin was added to their milk. The American researcher Francis Pottenger pointed out that as gelatin is a hydrophilic colloid, which means that it attracts and holds liquids, it facilitates digestion by attracting digestive juices to food in the gut. Even the epicures recognized that broth-based soup did more than please the taste buds. “Soup is a healthy, light, nourishing food” said Brillant-Savarin, “good for all of humanity; it pleases the stomach, stimulates the appetite and prepares the digestion.”


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