Monthly Archives: October 2010

Chipotle Cranberry Relish with Chicken and Rice

So there I was, innocently wandering the halls of the local Aircraft hanger.. um, I mean Supermarket. I think we may have run out of something, or needed a last minute item, but anyway, there I was. This particular store actually has a pretty nice Organic/Natural section cordoned off from the ‘normal’ food. One product line they carry is Living Intentions, a company that specializes in soaked, dried nuts. So, when I’m there, I look in for whatever Living Intentions products they have. This time, the only two things they had were Pumpkin seeds, and Chipotle Pistachios .

I was not particularly enthused by this meager offering since I’m just not that into Pumpkin seeds, and Chipotle Pistachios?? Well, my wife got the Pistachios to munch on the way home, and they were pretty good, but we didn’t eat a lot of them. But then…

My wife was trying to figure out how to jazz up a rather stale, routine chicken and rice dish.  Normally, we’d add some raw cheese and a veggie on top, but the Chipotle Pistachios inspired my wife.  After a whirlwind of activity, she produced a relish like nothing I had ever had! See below for her creation:

Chipotle Cranberry Relish (serves 4)

(make to taste; amounts are approximate)

3-4 Ounces of fresh Cranberries

Half a bag Living Intentions Chipotle Pistachios (or 2.5 oz of  other soaked/dried nut and add 1-2 teaspoon of chipotle seasoning**)

1 small Orange

1-2 Tablespoon Lime juice

1 Tablespoon Olive oil

1 small bunch of Cilantro (about 1/3 cup)

Sea Salt to taste

Grind nuts in food processor; add cranberries and process.  Then add orange, olive oil, lime juice, and salt (and Chipotle spices** if adding separately from nuts).  Blend, then add cilantro until well mixed.  End result should somewhat resemble the consistency of fresh homemade cranberry relish (thick and a little juicy).

Serve on Chicken and Rice.

If you can’t find Living Intentions nuts at a store near you (or if you have time and prefer doing it the hard way), you can soak your choice of nuts for 6-9 hours, drain, then scatter on a tray in your dehydrator or stove (on it’s lowest setting) and top with Chipolte seasoning.  Let dry/dehydrate for roughly 12-15 hours or until done.

**Chipotle seasoning (roughly from the Living Intentions label): Chili powder, Onion powder, Cumin, Sea Salt, and Tamari sauce (gluten-free).  Wheat eaters could use regular Soy Sauce in place of the Tamari.  Organic seasonings are best as they are non-irradiated.

So next time you get a chance, duck into random Aircraft hangers and look for some soaked nuts in the natural food section–they’re usually behind the torque wrenches.


Kimberly Hartke: My Husband Hearts Sally Fallon!

by Guest blogger, Kimberly Hartke

A well fed man, I’ve discovered, is a happy man. But a nourished man, well, he is a monster!

My husband is now deep into Sally Fallon territory, I have him reading the sidebars of Nourishing Traditions to me as I prepare breakfast. And, peering over my shoulder, while I cook, trying to learn NT techniques (in case I die, he explains).

He wants his granola soaked, his bread fermented for 7 days, and all his nuts crispy.

Only grassfed beef shall pass his lips, and he eats his sauerkraut RAW.

My husband embarrasses me in public by loudly saying things like, “We can’t possibly go out to a restaurant, there is nothing on the menu I can eat!”

Now that he knows that dining establishments use GMO soy oil in everything, we eat at home 24/7.

So much for date night.

When one of his brothers recently bemoaned “I forgot to buy crackers.” Monster dearest offered to make him some.

Caught on Camera: Hubbie Making Soaked Wheat Crispy Pancakes

His brother was flabbergasted. He sputtered, “You don’t have to make me crackers!”

In the beginning, when I first brought home raw milk, hubbie, with one eyebrow raised, watched me drink it for a week. When I didn’t keel over dead, he decided to try it.

Now, you can’t beat him off the milk bottle with a stick. He packs the stuff in a screw top water bottle, puts it in a cooler and takes it with him when he goes to his weekly brother’s breakfast.

We are now officially referred to by my in-laws as the ‘off the deep end health nuts’. Yeesh!

One weekend, when the dairy farm couldn’t deliver our farm fresh milk, he drove an hour each way to fetch it. Now, he swears if the food police take his raw milk away, he is going to put a cow in our back yard.

Yikes! I guess that means I’ll be the little milk maid (little does he know I am all thumbs when it comes to pulling on teats)!

Our conversation the other morning on the way home from the gym explains everything.

Hubbie: “You’ll have to soak some nuts today, and make raw milk yogurt. Then, go the store for organic oats to make more granola. And if we don’t have pumpkin seeds, maybe a trip to Trader Joes.”

Me: Groan.

It’s a terror, I tell you, living with a man having a ‘love affair’ with a cookbook author!


BIO:  Kimberly Hartke is the publicist for the Weston A. Price Foundation. She and her husband Keith really do enjoy eating healthy, together. Kimberly blogs about real food, raw milk and natural health at http://hartkeisonline.com.

The Nourishing Traditional Gentleman

Learn How Kimberly’s Husband Makes His Own Crackers:
sally-fallons-crispy-pancake-recipe/


Chicken soup for the toothless soul

Quite recently, my wife had two wisdom teeth removed. (Very much against her will, but it seemed the best thing to do in the end). She has incredible teeth, no cavities or anything, but randomly (the dentist can’t explain it) one broke. Soo, the difficult challenge became to make Real Food, that doesn’t require any chewing. Since that list boils down really fast to soup, we ate mostly soup for about a week. And since I was promoted to head chef, I can claim full credit for the one stellar success in that department: Chicken Radish Soup.
Editors note: Radish is really just the ‘secret weapon’ of this recipe, so the recipe could be called Chicken Harvest Soup. (Loosely follows the Chicken Rice recipe on page 199 of Nourishing Traditions, minus rice).

First we needed a good base for soup. I considered importing a French sous chef to oversee this part, but in the end settled for a temperature controlled crock pot. (It’s not even french, but it is pretty reliable). So we tossed a whole chicken in the crock pot for about 9 hours, and after the chicken was cooked, we separated the meat. Then we put the bones (fat, cartilage, and skin) back in with enough water to cover, and cooked that again overnight. Once the stock was strained, we had enough for a couple of meals of soup.

The next step was to account for our vegetable population. The inhabitants of our refrigerator included: Celery, Carrots, Onions, and Radishes. Plus we had some Potatoes in the cabinet. I chopped what I needed of the veggies, and set them to cook in the stock, added a bay leaf, and a generous amount of powdered garlic. I let these simmer until the potatoes were soft, and added them to the chicken. Since the goal was to have food that required no chewing, we had to convert this soup to baby food. I used a blender, starting with some chicken and adding a little of the broth and then combining everything as the blender was able to handle it. And of course, sea salt to taste.
This was by far the best baby food I’ve tasted. And yes, I have tasted quite a lot (my youngest brother is 15 years my junior, so I stole my fair share of his food). Anyway, as far as the soup goes, I think the radish was the amazing part. It was subtle, but brought a freshness that really suited the carrots and soup as a whole.
I’ll try to put all this here is a concise form:

Chicken Radish Soup

5-6 Cups of Chicken stock
2-3 Cups of chopped cooked Chicken
4 medium carrots.
One bunch of radishes (about 10)
1/2 large Onion
4 small Potatoes
2 stalks of Celery
1 Bay Leaf
1/2 – 1 Teaspoon of Garlic Powder
Sea Salt
Optional water.

Chop the vegetables, and place them in a stock pot.
After the veggies are chopped, add enough stock to cover them, and thin out the stock if needed. (I only thin out my stock if it’s pretty dense).
Simmer with the Bay Leaf and Garlic powder for about an hour, or until the potatoes are soft. The other veggies should cook faster than the potatoes, but they aren’t bad if they are undercooked. You can add the chicken at any time, I add it near the end so it retains flavor. We take half of a chicken that has been cooked in the crock pot for our soup, so the measurement is approximate.
Remove the Bay Leaf, and salt to taste.
Enjoy!

We had these veggies on hand since we wanted to have something to boost the immune system, and there are a lot of nutrients in Carrots, Radishes, and Celery. Some vitamins are destroyed by heat and cooking, but you can hang on to a few in a broth. So I think this make a good soup for healing, but it’s also really tasty.


Stringy Squash

So, I have to brag. My wife just cooked an incredible meal, and pretty much made it up off the top of her head (which is very cute).

It’s nearing Autumn around here, and the only local crop that came out well is squash. Several varieties have made some good dishes for us in the past few weeks, particularly the Butternut squash. (In case you are not familiar with Butternut squash, when it is in it’s prime, it tastes like some kind of creamy-nut-concoction infused with butter. Amazing.)

Today we stopped at a produce stand along our way, and picked up some squash. I was excited about the Butternut, but my (very smart) wife had also slipped some Spaghetti squash (image at right) into the basket. Later she informed me that we would have some Spaghetti on greens with some ground beef. ‘Hm,’ thought I, ‘I guess that won’t be too bad’.

Not too bad? I am clearly an idiot for not seeing the potential. It certainly wasn’t bad, in fact it was great! And here, (as far as I can get out of her), is what she did:

Ingredients:
1 Spaghetti squash (AKA: noodle squash,vegetable spaghetti, or spaghetti marrow)
12 oz or more Spinach (we had less than we would have liked, so go all out on the Spinach)
2-3 cloves of Garlic
1 -lb grass fed organic ground beef
A few Tablespoons of Olive oil for cooking
Spices ~2 teaspoons of each
Oregano
Basil
Garlic powder (Yes, more Garlic)
Toppings to add after cooking:
Shredded raw cheese such as Parmesan, (we used Manchego)
Pitted, marinated black olives
Process:
Cook the Spaghetti squash for about an hour until done (a butter knife should easily pierce the outside). If you are not familiar with Spaghetti squash, you should cut it length-wise and bake it face down on a buttered dish. This will help it cook evenly and retain moisture.
While the Spaghetti squash is cooking, begin to brown the beef (on low for grass fed beef) and slowly add the spices when it is partly browned.
Shortly before the squash is done, start sauteing the Spinach in the Olive oil, and add the Garlic cloves. Mix well, and cook the Spinach as much as makes you comfortable.
After the squash is cooked, scoop out the flesh, which should be very stringy (like Spaghetti), onto plates.
Add Spinach and beef. Then top with cheese and olives, and salt to taste.

So, if you have any sense at all, and are within range of a fresh, locally produced, organic Spaghetti squash, devour it immediately! (Before I do).


tabouli (Parsley salad)

I once lost a bet with a Lebanese fisherman*. He challenged my manhood on the basis of Parsley. Yep, that wimpy, little garnish lost me a good $5. How? Oh, the large, burly, shiphand said I couldn’t eat a pound of the stuff, but that he could. Yeah, I know what your thinking, ‘Parsley? That’s not actually food.’ And you’re correct. Also, a pound of Parsley is a lot. After struggling down about two bowls (10-11 oz), I gave in. He gleefully piled his Parsley into a bowel of Bulgar, mixed some oil and other veggies, and ate his lunch. And took my money.

*This story is not based on any real events.

Tabouli is a traditional Mediterranean dish, crafted by mixing Parsley with cracked wheat, then pouring in oil, Vinegar, Lemon juice, and fresh veggies. A modern variation which I prefer can be made by substituting Quinoa for the Bulgar, which is particularly useful for those avoiding Wheat (or gluten).  The general idea is to have about as much Parsley as Quinoa, and to make the mixture smooth with the oil. Vinegar and Lemon juice should be added to taste, and you can fill it out significantly with the veggies if you like.

I usually make (for 2):

1 cup of Quinoa

1/4 cup of Olive oil

2-3 Tablespoon of Lemon juice (a generous splash)

1-2 Tablespoons of Vinegar

3-4 green Onions, chopped

1 or 1/2 Cucumber, chopped

1 full bunch of Parsley, finely chopped

I find the curly Parsley to chop more easily, but flat leaf Parsley works as well.

So, I recommend avoiding the docks at night, and getting your healthy dose of Parsley from Tabouli.