Sauerkraut..Es gefällt mir!

>> Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A few weeks ago I started a batch of green/purple sauerkraut.  Last year I was addicted to cultured foods and tried to ferment anything and everything.  The last batch I made went earlier this year went bad within a few days and it's taken me a few months to get up the courage to try again.  Pounds of carrots into the garbage.  I was heartbroken.

I decided on a simple sauerkraut this time- cabbage, salt, and water.  The bottles sat out on the counter for about 5 days before I moved them to the fridge.  I'm setting these aside for the intro phase of the GAPS diet that I am planning to start next week. 


Roasted Duck Plus Innards with Tomato Sauce

>> Friday, April 23, 2010

Cut the duck into 8 pieces and seared in butter.

Cook over low heat for about 10 minutes until browned.

After pieces are browned, cover pan and roast in oven at 350 degs for about 45 mins.

Can't waste all the innards so those were fried up in butter.

Added homemade tomato sauce (with oregano, fennel, and red pepper flakes) and had this over "faux"tatoes (whipped cauliflower).


Bison Cheddar Cheeseburger wth Grilled Onions and Mascarpone Mushroom Sauce

>> Thursday, April 15, 2010

*Mascarpone is nor SCD/GAPS legal* 


Onion Soup

>> Saturday, April 10, 2010

This recipe is basically the base of French Onion Soup without the addition of alcohol. The deep flavor will come from the caramelization of the onions and this will often take one to two hours to get the perfect sweetness.  Add herbs and spices to your liking and maybe even some melted swiss on top if you're able to eat cheese.

Start with a clean pot. I always add a stick of butter to cook the onions in, no matter how much beef fat I can get from making broth.

If you have an oil/water separator, it will be easy to get the fat off the broth after cooking. I chose to refrigerate my broth overnight so I could pick off the fat.

This last batch of beef broth wasn't so bountiful so I threw in another stick of butter (I got 3.5 cups from the previous batch!).  This is personal taste.  If you fear fat, add to suit your needs.

Melt fat over low heat. I used an enamel covered cast iron pot for this so I had to use very low heat.

Add onions. This batch contained about 5-6 small onions.  Add more if you like a lot of onions.  I make rings for ease but this definitely adds to the cooking time. Keep heat on low, cover, and let the onions "sweat" for about 30-45 minutes.

While the onions are sweating, reheat (if needed) the remaining broth and blend so that all the gelatin, meat, and marrow is indistinguishable.

Once onions are soft and translucent, uncover and continue to cook on low until they reach a deep dark brown.

It may take at least an hour for the onions to start caramelizing. Keep stirring to avoid any sticking to the pot.

Once the onions are caramelized and the sweetness you like (about 1.5-2 hours for me), add the blended broth in and bring to a boil. Add less broth if you like a thicker soup with more onions.  Once boiling, remove from heat and add black pepper and sea salt (table salt just doesn't do it) to taste.

I've tried cooking beef along with the broth to add more protein to this soup, but the flavor comes out much like brown gravy. To keep the sweet onion taste, I add very thinly sliced steak when the soup comes to a boil, either to the whole soup or to each portion for breakfast.


Making Beef Broth or Simple Steps to Be a Bad Hindu

>> Thursday, April 8, 2010

Drinking mineral-rich broth daily (or with every meal) is a wonderful way to improve your digestion.  A good bone broth will be loaded with fat, gelatin, and marrow, all prized for their healing properties.  Broth can be made from any bones, but I find beef to be the most healing for me (ironic because I'm Hindu).  About 4 months ago, I was unable to properly digest any nut.  Now pecans are no problem.  My husband has always had a problem with dairy, shellfish, and beef.  No more.  I attribute all this healing to a daily breakfast of beef soup (and a 6'3" 189 lb dose of loving).

This is just one of many methods for reference and inspiration...

Start with bones that have a little meat still on them and are cut to expose the marrow.  Some roast the bones before boiling.  I used 5 lbs of bones into an 8L pot.

Add a foot or two if you can find them. It's one of the most gelatinous parts of the animal.  I added one foot, about 3 lbs.  Handling a foot may be the grossest part of this process, but when it cooks down it becomes this huge gelatinous mass of goodness.  That's a whole lot less traumatic than handling a head.  Supposedly the head is also a treasure to eat.  I feel bad enough eating all this beef!  The last thing I need is a head staring back at me.

Cover bones with water (cold is best) and squeeze the juice of two lemons into the water to increase mineral extraction.

Let sit for 1 hour for acids to soak into bones.

Bring to a boil.  Scum will rise to the top.  Remove this with a spoon.

Once boiling, lower to a slow simmer and cook for 24-72 hours. I keep my pot covered when using my 8L pot.  For my 16L pot, I keep it uncovered to let the water boil off.  Depending on the size of your pot, you may have to add water.  Try to keep the bones covered with enough water during the simmer or else you'll end up with just fat (which isn't a bad thing if you need to stock up on some).

Remove from heat and let cool so the bones can be picked out. Remember to remove as much of the marrow as you can from the bones and savor it then if you like.  I throw the marrow back into the broth.  Some folks like to strain the broth to remove the gelatin and marrow and also separate the fat.  The GAPS diet recommends keeping these in because they are essential for healing.

Glorious fat and gelatin with beautiful globs of marrow.

Next post: Beef and Onion Soup


Making Labneh with Olive Oil Gold

>> Tuesday, April 6, 2010

During our trip to Italy last summer, we of course had to bring home some "real" Italian extra virgin olive oil and sundried tomatoes.  Most extra virgin olive oil in the states isn't actually extra virgin olive oil.  Some are made of soybean oil with flavor additives.  Companies don't have to tell you this because the US is not a part of the International Olive Oil Council.  Check this out if you're as curious about it as I was.   Blows your mind?  Wait until you hear about honey.

For the labneh (yogurt cheese Middle Eastern style) I followed this method using 24-hour fermented yogurt made with half and half.  I formed the yocheese into little balls and let them dry on the counter for a few hours.  I then put them into a container with some olive oil, red pepper flakes, dried basil, and sundried tomatoes.  After marinating for a few days, we had schmeared labneh on roasted lamb and veggies.  So good!


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