Tired of paying exorbitant prices to keep healthy skin? Want to avoid wrinkles caused by cold, windy winters? Tired of not really knowing what is in the products [yes companies lie....and also hide behind big chemical names...and today these are oft replaced merely by numbers!]? Consumers have had to fight to just know what is in these products [and their food]. But some ingredients or items may not even have to be labelled!
One solution is to make your own: DIY [do it yourself]. I'll make it easy for you. Try to get all organic ingredients: remember your skin absorbs whatever is put on it!
This recipe is a thick cream for winter. If it works in Canada, it will work anywhere! :) For a summer version, increase the oils. Remember when applying any cream, lotion or oil that the goal is hold in water [hydro]. So it is best to wash in warm water and mild soap [except the face], pat dry, apply cream. It may appear a little greasy for a few minutes so give it time to absorb. And apply very small quantities.
Cleanliness is vital. Using totally dry utensils is also important. Note that without preservatives you want to be careful about mold. I have never had a problem whatsoever though.
I use food grade oils. They are much cheaper and can be bought in most grocery stores. Other ingredients can be bought online.Try to get unrefined, organic and free trade ingredients.
This recipe is all natural, edible and smells fantastic: like chocolate! Enjoy.
Melt in a small sauce pan:
70 grams beeswax
100g shea butter
100g cocoa butter
Once melted, add the following:
5 Tablespoons grape seed oil
8 T Avocado oil
10 T Almond oil
If you have a favourite essential oil, you can add just before pouring into containers.But this recipe smells so good even without EO's!
Once all melted, you can pour in CLEAN containers. It is best to use glass jars. Plastic [all] may transfer estrogen into the cream. You can even use old jars, cream containers, etc. Let cool. Put tops on. Whatever you aren't using you can freeze for years!
When camping you 'need' to eat great food! So this year I experimented with sour dough chapatis. They are a great dessert! The easiest way to make sour dough is to get some starter from a friend! :) .... I will post other ways to start you own in a separate post.
Sour dough is made with flour, water and starter. How fast it "grows"/ferments depends on the temperature/weather. So if it's warm you need to keep feeding it. See upcoming post.
The great thing about sour dough is that it is literally pre-digested by the bacteria. So it is easier to digest. And the sour taste helps stimulate digestion. It also won't go bad as long you continue to 'feed' it.
Like most recipes, you need to get a sense of what you're making - i.e. I can give measurements but ultimately you need to be the judge. Chapati dough is made to the same basic consistency of bread. I am being flexible or expansive in using the term 'chapati'. They are grilled. But you can also use butter, or ghee as in traditional Indian cooking. in the pan just before you place the dough in it. These are called parathas. It's more like a shallow fried bread. Both are great.
To make enough for 2-3 hungry campers:
Start with about 1-1.5 cups starter
Add enough flour [preferably whole grain organic] to make a thick consistency. This depends on the type of flour, how it is milled, etc. But expect to use at least 2 cups.
It is best to use gluten flour to help it rise, but not necessarily. I have used buckwheat, oat, spelt, and wheat flours. You can also add things like sesame seeds, ground flax, poppy seeds, etc. My Garam Masala adds a fantastic boost of flavour. [See recipe in previous post]. Mix well so all ingredients are wet. Traditional Indian recipes often call for ghee to be added to the dough mix itself. But don't do this till you are forming the balls, if so desired.
Leave the mix at least 1/2 day. The longer the more sour it becomes. This also helps to break down phytates found in grains, seeds, etc. which are anti-nutrients. You can "punch it down" when it rises. The longer you leave it, the more flour the bacteria "eat", so you will need to keep feeding "them" flour. More water should not be necessary.
Make small balls of the dough - about 2" or so. Meanwhile have a pan [or even a pot] heating on your stove or fire. If you want you can add 1-2 Tablespoons of butter, ghee or coconut oil to the pan. Other oils should not be fried. If making at home, a toaster over works well. Then you just flour the pan and roll out dough and bake at 350F or higher till it is done. The higher the temperature, the more it will rise.
When the butter is hot,and after you flatten the dough by hand, bottle or a similar object, put the dough in the pan.It will cook fast - depending how think you make them. Flip when one side is browning. Once both sides are brown they are ready to be devoured.
Add more butter, etc. before each new ball is put in the pan,if necessary.
You can serve with anything you would put on bread or just plain. Yum!
First question: Is rhubarb a fruit or vegetable? We eat it like a fruit...sourly...but biologically it is far from a fruit.
So how do we get it to taste yummy without being too too sour? [The sour taste is good for digestion though]. One sugar free way is to use the natural sugar in dates [or raisin or any dried fruit and most fresh fruits] and coconut. Serving with cream or milk helps too.
Water [a few cm in pot]
Rhubarb: 5 or so stalks
Dates: about 1/2 cup
Shredded coconut: 1/2 cup [try to get organic without preservative]
Xtras: berries, milk, cream...
Cut the rhubarb into 1cm piece. Put in boiling water. Add dates right away or can wait till rhubarb almost soft. But cooking the dates adds more sweetness. Add coconut before rhubarb is soft. You can add other fruit at this point also. Can also add oats if you like.
Serve hot with additional fruit if you like, or toasted/raw seeds/nuts and cream/milk. Ice cream is good too - but full of sugar.
These yummy granola bars are gluten free [GF] and basically sugar free. They have as few sweeteners as possible - but some are needed to keep them together. The dates and raisins are healthier alternatives than filling with sugar. Eggs have been added for the purpose of keeping them together also. Experiment with alternative ingredients as you wish. Try to use organic [and local] ingredients if possible: especially the raisins and peanut butter - the "conventional" [sprayed with toxic sprays] are known to contain lots of harmful residue.
Mix the dry and wet ingredients separately:
4.5 c rolled oats
.5 c rolled barley [can be replaced with oats or alternative grain/seed]
2 c coconut flour
1.5 c dates finely chopped
1 c raisins
.5 c sunflower seeds
.75 c pumpkin seeds
1 c peanut butter
.5 c tahini
1.5 c butter [or oil but butter adds to richness and is healthier than polyunsaturated oils correlated with cancer]
.5 c blackstrap molasses [the most unrefined and healthiest form]
.25-.5 c honey
It helps to heat the butter slightly till it is in an oil state.
Mix all separately and then together. Oil 2 7"X11" pans.
Put ingredients in pans and press down firmly.
Heat at 350F for 20-25. Watch as the coconut flour burns easily
In India most people traditionally have made their own garam masala [what some in the world may call curry powder]. The homemade stuff kills the store bought mix .... as is usually the case with home prepared things.
It's real easy and well worth the time! Spices really make a meal taste fab! - if done right.
For "gm" use whole spices. They are toasted in a frying pan or a toaster over. Listen for when they start to pop. That is a sign they are almost ready.
Then you grind up or pound them to a powder. A coffee grinder can be used. Store them in a jar or freeze if you do a lot. Simple! Add to the food near the end of the cooking process. They can be used in soups, stir fries, dals, omelettes...
There are millions of variations of the spices and the amounts - depending on preferences. Here's a simple combination I have created - partially due to the availability of the spices.
1 part of each of the following seeds:
hot peppers [depends on how hot they are and how hot you like your food so alter accordingly]
turmeric [not to be roasted though]
green cardamon [remove pods]
black or brown mustard
Keep a record of your mix. After trying a simple one like this one here, it's time to begin experimenting!
Peanuts, eggs, milk, nuts....BEWARE! Many wonder why so many in the North America suffer from allergies rarely heard of until the last 20 years. A recent broadcast of The Agenda focused on this. The episode was not very useful except to stimulate more questions.
The most important point made on the show was that our diets have changed. But this was not seriously taken up. So let's look at that now.
First, today, most eat a highly processed diet. What does this consist of? Processed foods are processed. Run through machines - made by machines - for machines - not humans. They are dead "foods". All the enzymes and many vitamins have been destroyed - which are necessary for proteins and other substances to be broken down and assimilated. They are oft full of sugar or high fructose corn syrup. They are full of empty carbs. They are oft high on the glycemic index. These all contribute to inflammation [part of the allergic reaction] and the last ones to diabetes.
Corn and soy - both hard to digest and full of anti-nutrients are in 90% of processed foods. Both of these are industrial agriculture's babies. Like babies they demand much food - chemical fertilizers and pesticides. They are also all GMO's [genetically modified organisms]. Organic ones are not GMO.
All the cows, pigs, and chickens that are "raised" in/on factory farms [read caged prisons] are given these same corn and soy...along with anti-biotics. So humans end up eating a large amount of these. And let's remember that soy was used in the paint industry until it became a huge money maker for Big Ag. No traditions culture ate unfermented soy.
So what affect do these have on our immune systems? How does the estrogen in soy affect us? How does the stressful "living" conditions the animals [and us] live in, effect them and us?
Our immune system is determined by the movement of lymph. Lymph only "works" through us moving. Most North Americans are so sedate it is no wonder their immune and others systems malfunction! Few walk, ride, play sports...just play with their phone and drive. Few even get moving making healthy food.
Research reveals that the lack of sleep most North American "experience" plays a big role.
So the milk and eggs consumed in North America are defiled. Not only is the meat of pasture fed cows higher in Omega 3 fatty acids, so are the eggs of chickens that eat organic feed, along with some yummy worms, bugs, etc.
And who in Ontario has few allergies and asthma? Children that grow up on farms - and especially the Amish. What is a staple of their diet? Raw milk! Full of enzymes and healthy bacteria that strengthen the body systems and is much easier to digest - this reduces allergies and asthma.
So why isn't there more research into those who don't suffer from allergies? The Agenda discussed more research but again it's direction is a quick fix: more support for Big Pharma! All we need is more vaccinations! Why not research how these have shut down our immune systems rather than looking for more?
Research needs to examine the role of pesticides and the 10,000 chemicals [mostly unregulated] that we come in contact with - daily! Their accumulated affect needs to be considered. A child today is born into a cesspool of chemicals in the air, water and food - like never before! It has got to have an effect! And peanuts have been known to have dangerous levels of pesticide residues, since the 1980s. I have seen people allergic to certain foods switch to organic and like magic: no allergic reaction!
We need a-live food! Food that has lots of probiotics, enzymes and nutrition IN them. Fermented foods like natto, miso, kimchi, sauerkraut, kefir, and kombucha are a great place to start. But how many even know what these are? Eating unprocessed foods are more nutritious and recommended.
Personally, I "cured" my allergy to ragweed. Through a regime of kombucha, water and milk kefir, bee pollen and lots of kimchi [all organic and homemade] I don't suffer from hayfever! Like most health related discussions, I cannot say which is the cause but there certainly is a correlation here which should be investigated further.
We already know from the research of people like Weston A. Price that traditional lifestyles were much healthier. Plenty of seafood, saturated fats, fermented foods, raw foods and unprocessed foods has kept people allergy free for ages. Instead of, or in addition to research on these foods, we need a change in the food system and life systems we "live". For more on these see this blog's articles and videos.
Spring is a glorious time - especially if you like free very nutritious food. A few great plants are Garlic Mustard and Stinging Nettles. GM has a very short season for the plate. It soon goes to flower then seed. It's ok to eat in all these stages but the earlier the better: more tender then.
Nettles can be eaten any time...just beware: "stinging" for a reason! They are very high in iron. Use gloves or avoid touching using scissors.
In this picture you see GM and Beets that over-wintered in the greenhouse. They were lightly steamed in 1cm of water. Here they are swimming in Organic Soy Sauce [to avoid being GMO: Genetically Modified] and Organic Sesame Oil. Yummy.
You can also make great KIMCHI from the GM. See blog for Kimchi recipe and video or on my Youtube.
The violet, periwinkle and other plants are flowering now....so hurray and en-joy. For pic of uncooked GM see the post: "Free Food - But Don't Trust Me - Trust Monsanto And McDonald's".
This is a fast and delicious noodle recipe with cancer fighting Shitake mushrooms. It takes about 30 minutes to prepare and less to eat!
The following amounts of ingredients are flexible to taste [for 2 people]:
5 Shitake Mushrooms [can use dried that have been soaked over-night], finely sliced
2 rolls Korean noodles, cooked till tender
5 cloves of garlic, finely cut
1 medium carrot, shredded
1 onion, diced
2 T fat/oil for heating
4 T Sesame oil
4 T Soy Sauce
1. Heat oil.
2. Put garlic into medium heated oil until you smell it cooking.
3. Put mushrooms into pan for 2 minutes
4. Add noodles. Stir-fry for a few minutes
5. Stir in soy sauce
6. Add carrot and onion. Fry till cooked
7. Sprinkle sesame oil over food.
A great topping for veges, grains or eating by itself. Can be made in about 5-10 min.
2 c black or other beans. Canned will do but best to soak overnight dried ones and cook. Pressure cookers speed up the process.
1-2 onions finely chopped
6 or more cloves garlic or SCAPES [about 12 or more] finely chopped.
1-2 cm piece fresh ginger
3 T ground cumin
1 bunch fresh cilantro
3-5 T lemon juice of vinegar
1 t salt
1 t hot pepper to taste
Blend the beans and add the rest. It can be served hot or cold. Keeps about 5 days in fridge. The dip is pictured below on-top of wild cabbage.
Natto is the wonder food. It directs calcium to the bones - increasing their density. It is full of Vitamin K2 - the "trendy" vitamin! It also protects the heart. It helps to prevent plaque from sticking to it. It also boost the immune system and reduces chronic inflammation.. Dr. Mercola has an interesting video here. Another article is worth looking at here.
So, how do you make natto? It's very easy. What you need is:
2 c organic dry soybeans
1-2 T natto starter [store bought natto should be ok to use]
1. Soak the beans over-night.
2. Cook about 45 min. in a pressure cooker or pot for much longer.
Don't over-cook. They shouldn't be mushy.
3. Add the natto. Stir well.
4. The mixture needs to be kept at 100-105 F for at least 24 hours.
5. A good way is to put the whole pot into the oven with a light bulb on. Or you can put a heating pad around the pot in a cooler.
6. After 24 hours it should be slimy like my picture shows. You can freeze in small bags. It should last at least 6 months.
Why buy pills that are supposedly full of probiotics? Do you know if any are even alive by the time you get them? And who knows what is in them? And support some huge corporation when you can make them yourself! Nothing like DIY....be proud of yourself for taking care of your-self [and others]!
Water kefir is full of great bacteria and yeasts. Kombucha is also, along with glucoronic acid - a potent detoxifying substance.
To make water kefir:
1. Put 2 T of the "babies" in a 500ml jar
2. Add 1-2 T sugar [organic]
3. Add 3-4 figs or fresh HARD fruit like an apple, sliced [about 1/2 of one].
4. Add 1/2 lemon or lime, sliced.
5. Fill with water.
In a few days, depending on the room temperature, it should be fermented enough. Now get a sieve [metal is ok though many say don't use this], and put a funnel into a jar and pour off contents. It's best to scoop out fruit first.
Rinse babies. Wash jar/lid.
Add the babies and repeat.
To make kombucha:
Boil 3 L water.
Turn off, and add 8 black tea bags - organic preferred. Red Rose Orange Pekoe is pesticide free according to CBC Marketplace.
Add 1 Cup Organic Sugar
Let cool overnite
Put all ingredients in a glass large jar. A ceramic bowl works too, but the jar is best. Do not use any kind of plastic due to estrogen leaks. To this add the kombucha "mushroom" and about 1/2 C liquid from last batch if you have it.
Put in a dark place for about 2-3 weeks.
Take the mushroom out and repeat with a new jar. It's best to have a few jars at a time. You can separate the new mushroom that grows on top of the old one for a new batch.
** If interested in purchasing either starter, please write me via the contact form or via the facebook link.
Great soup for the fall. Using radish tops is a great way to NOT waste food...I learned this in Korea. Just be sure stalks are not hollow or white inside. Cut very small and saute for at least 10 minutes.Likewise, you can use turnip tops! This is a great way to use parts many discard. Both are good for making kimchi also!
About 4 cups cut radish tops
1/4 cup black fungus [soaked a few hours]
4 T tamarind
1 cup finely cut zucchini
2 T tumeric
2 T garam masala [watch for my homemade version]
4 garlic cloves [or heads would be better!]
1 hot pepper
1. Heat 3 T olive oil or other fat.
2. Put in hot pepper, finely chopped and onions.
3. Almost immediately after, add other greens.
4. What 1/2 done, add zuch
5. Add spices [including sea salt]
6. Add broth or water. Add as much as you want for desired amount.
7. Boil/simmer till veges are done.