Walnut Milk

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Since I am sensitive to dairy, and my daughter is sensitive to almonds, I have started making my own walnut milk!

Its so easy to make, anyone can do it.  I take one cup walnuts and soak them in water with some salt for 8 hours.  You can put it in the fridge or on the counter.

After 8 hours, rinse the walnuts well.  Then place them in a blender with 5 cups water.  Blend for several minutes.

Let it sit for a few minutes and skim the bubbles (foam) off the top.  Use a nut bag, cheese cloth or a fine mesh strainer to filter out the nut pulp from the milk.

Save the pulp to make something else.

Sometimes I add honey for taste, but most of the time I drink it plain.

The process is the same for making almond milk too.  If all the mystery ingredients scare you in the store bought stuff, I highly recommend making your own.

You can make milk from almost anything.  Cashews only need to soak for 6 hours.

I use walnut milk to make lattes, smoothies, anything you’d use regular milk for.

 

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Mint Chocolates, vegan, gaps friendly, dairy free

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OK, so the photo doesn’t do these morsels of goodness any justice.  They are so delicious I’d rather eat them up then spend time staging a gorgeous photo.  Now that they are in my belly, I regret not taking the time to orchestrate a beautiful photo to entice you to make these!

Next time I make these, I will be sure to update the photo!  Until then. Here’s the recipe!

1/3 cup walnuts (soaked and dehydrated)

7-8 medjool dates

2 Tbsp cocoa

2-3 drops doterra peppermint essential oil (you could use peppermint extract: expermiment with amount to suit your taste)

1/2 tsp salt (real salt, Himalayan, or Celtic)

I use my nutribullet to pulse everything into a smooth consistency.  You can use a vitamix blender or food processor.

Roll into balls and put in freezer.  Mine have yet to make it to the freezer as I usually polish them in one sitting.  I make them when I crave chocolate.

Optionally, you can decorate each ball with a sprinkle of coconut.

If you are making them to share, then you may want to triple the recipe.

Pancakes (GAPS, Paleo, DF, GF)

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I don’t know about you, but I LOVE pancakes.  These pancakes are GAPS friendly, Paleo friendly, Dairy Free and Gluten Free, oh, and vegetarian (not vegan).  I personally think they are the closest thing to regular pancakes, but I haven’t had real pancakes in a LONG time.  In my opinion, almond flour is too heavy and dense; and coconut flour has its own texture/taste issues.  This recipe uses walnuts as a base, so if you are allergic or sensitive, skip this recipe altogether.

1 cup walnuts (I recommend soaking and dehydrating according to Nourishing Traditions/Weston A Price, or buy them already soaked and dehydrated, like I do)

Use the food processor to grind them into a nut butter (or close to it.)

Add four eggs and continue to process.

Add 1 tsp baking soda

pinch of salt (I love pink himalayan salt)

1-2 Tbsp raw honey

Mix all the ingredients before pouring batter to make pancakes each time (the walnut butter likes to separate and sink to the bottom.)

Double the recipe or triple it to store for additional meals!  I love to use them in place of bread.

Enjoy!

REAL food

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Since the origin of this blog, I have gotten questions from several readers asking me what I value most (about natural living) and what I’d suggest as a jumping off place to someone who wants to make some changes but feels overwhelmed with where to start.

First, let me emphasize that my motivation for natural living came from our struggle with infertility.  It was the driving force for MANY changes, but most importantly diet.

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The definition of food to me five years ago was VERY different than my definition of food today.  Five years ago, I loved anything processed (pasta, pizza, cereal, etc) and lots of dairy.  Today, I only eat whole foods (and sadly, no dairy).  I choose not to buy anything processed.  REAL food is medicine.  Man made food/factory produced food is the opposite.

Let me back up by saying that I am a Christian.  I believe God called us to care for the land and the people around us.  What you buy is voting for the farmer or factory who produced the food.  Do you want to support the farmer who cares lovingly for his animals, allowing them to roam free on pasture and see the sun, or the farmer who is looking at the bottom dollar. Do you want to eat the chicken who roams free and sees sun or the chicken who is being squashed into a building too many other chickens, never seeing the light of day?  I choose to support local farmers who treat the land and animals with love.  The result of such passion and old fashion agricultural practices is food that is way more nourishing than the other.  The taste is better too. Same goes for produce.  Do you want to eat an apple covered in pesticide over one that’s used natural farming practices to deter pests? I prefer the clean apple and supporting that orchard that has produced the organic apple.  Our air and bodies can thank these farmers for not polluting our air, our soil, or our bodies with these known poisons.

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There are a lot of ways to look at the food you are buying.

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As for produce, I try to buy organic whenever possible.  If it’s an item not on the dirty dozen list or a high pesticide crop; its ok to skip the organic BUT make sure it’s not GMO (the produce code starts with an 8 for GMO produce).

I buy grassfed beef and pastured poultry from local farmers.  You can buy 1/4 of a cow for a great price in this area (Lancaster County, PA).

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I buy eggs from local farms that have not been pasteurized.  I look for soy free and organic.  During the summer I pay $2.75/dozen.  Lately I pay $5/dozen for eggs that have bright orange yolks.  To me, it’s worth it.  Some people buy starbucks coffee; I buy eggs.  It comes back to what you value.  The nutrients in the egg yolks far outweigh the coffee in my opinion.   (I like coffee)

If you eat grains or nuts, look into how to properly prepare them on the Weston A Price website or the Nourishing Traditions book.

As for fish: my verdict is still out due to all the recent ocean disasters.

As for water, I feel it’s important to invest in a good water filter.  Choose one that filters out fluoride, lead, chlorine, etc.  (Options: Berkey, Crystal Quest )

My journey into whole foods has been gradual.  It can be overwhelming to think about all the changes that need to be made.  Each of us is on a journey.  REAL food is a good place to start pursuing all things natural.  It’s still a journey I’m pursuing and growing in.  Being on the GAPS diet, I make everything.  It’s exhausting, but it’s worth it.

Spicy Carrot Soup (gaps, df, gf)

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Soup is such an easy and affordable way to feed your family healthy.  And this soup is a great last minute meal, as its quick to make!

 

 

 

This meal is cheap, dirt cheap if you make your own chicken broth.

Spicy Carrot Soup

2 L chicken broth (9 cups)

14 large carrots

1 T chili powder (more if you like spicy)

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp coriander

Salt

 

Cook carrots in the broth on the stove until soft.  Purée in the blender or use an immersion blender.  Enjoy.

 

Mushroom Soup (gaps friendly, dairy and gluten free)

I don’t have any beautiful photos to show off for this soup, besides my daughter inhaling it!

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This soup developed after I made a batch of homemade chicken broth and had a hankering for mushroom soup (which I haven’t had in years!)

This soup was delicious!

Here’s the recipe:

1 liter of  (4 1/2 c) homemade chicken broth

(I’m heavy on salt for broth so I didn’t add any to the soup)

16 oz mini Bella mushrooms

2 smashed cloves of garlic

 

Cook on stove until mushrooms are done.  Blend and serve.

 

Day Two/Day Three of Gaps Intro: Stage Two

I underestimated how difficult GAPS intro is.  I have so many cravings for something sweet or starchy.  The reason the intro stage is so hard is that the bad bacteria is dying off from lack of sugars, starches, and carbs feeding them.  This stage is so important, so the good bacteria have a chance to repopulate with the introduction of fermented foods juice and probiotics.  Skip over the stage too quickly and you won’t have the healing you desire.

I’m physically exhausted, thirsty, irritable, and tired of chicken broth already.  I don’t have much patience.

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Yesterday, most of the food I ate were the leftovers from day one.  I did boil another chicken and make pulled chicken with carrot zucchini noodles for dinner.  I forgot to peel the zucchini, so that was GAPS intro illegal.

i have found that herbal gelatin really helps curb the cravings and hunger.  Here is the recipe I used:

http://kehoeskitchen.com/2013/05/01/peppermint-intro-jellies/#.UmF7nMu9KSM

You can use peppermint tea, chamomile, or ginger tea.  You can even add honey if you are finding you need something to help your blood sugar.

Basically the recipe is 1 1/3 c tea to 6 Tbsp gelatin.

I use Great Lakes grass fed pastured gelatin. http://amzn.to/19Ryshj

For the most part, I have been resting.  Last night I was abnormally tired, I wanted to crawl into bed at 7:30.

This morning I had meatballs for breakfast ( beef and chicken liver combined) that I made in the crockpot last night.  I made two pounds so I could freeze some for another day.  I also had a raw egg yolk in broth.

For lunch, Eby and I ate the leftover pulled chicken with some broth (with one raw egg yolk) and two spoonfuls of sauerkraut juice.

Right now I have beef broth going in one crockpot, and a roast boiling in the other.  We will probably have the roast with some carrots or carrot soup tonight.

I look forward to future stages, but I don’t want to rush through the stage just because Im tired of the food.  I want to do it right the first time so I don’t have to go on intro again.