Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Product Review: Food for Life Tortillas

I ordered the Food for Life brand sprouted grain tortillas and brown rice tortillas with plans to make breakfast burritos.  These tortillas do not roll up.  We ended up with a broken mess, however they have a good taste.  I decided to give them another try with quesadillas, they are just too fragile to work with...

I want to like these, anyone have tips/success with making these work???

Friday, June 24, 2011

White Chili

We love chili. We love beans. We love cheese and tortilla chips.  Do you?

1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp olive oil
4 cups cubed chicken
2, 15 oz cans white kidney beans, rinsed and drained (or soak your own)
1, 15 oz can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained (or soak your own)
2 cups chicken broth
1, 4 oz can chopped green chiles
2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp Celtic sea salt
1/4 tsp cayenne
1/4 cup fresh cilantro

Saute onions and garlic in oil until tender. If using raw chicken cook with the onions and garlic, otherwise add cooked chicken and all other ingredients except cilantro. Simmer for 20-30 minutes. Stir in cilantro. Serve with raw cheese and corn chips.

You can also throw everything but the cilantro in a crock pot and cook on low 6-7 hours.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Creamy Orange Cooler (Cultured!)

I've been intrigued by Heavenly Homemaker's recipe for Creamy Orange Cooler since I stumbled across it months ago. Why did it take me so long to try this? So Good!!! I have always cooked with buttermilk, but never had it for a drink. Just wonderful. And if you are industrious enough to make your own buttermilk (from raw milk) and use fresh (raw) oranges, it would be even better.

This recipe makes 2 servings. I half it and make it in my magic bullet, then I can drink right out of the cup I mixed it in. You could probably even pour the ingredients in a pint jar with a lid and give it a few good shakes to mix it up.

Juice of 3 medium oranges (or 8 ounces orange juice)
2 cups cultured buttermilk
2 teaspoons grade B maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Squeeze juice from the oranges and pour into a blender with remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth.

Fresh Salsa, Cultured

I got to spend time with two sweet friends on Monday canning tomatoes and making fresh salsa! What fun! They even acted as food stylists for my photo up there. We used my fresh salsa recipe which you can then culture with whey if you want. Culturing makes your food probiotic and also preserves it - this salsa will stay fresh in the fridge for 6 months or more. And, your salsa is still raw because no heat is used. Enjoy!

1 medium onion, quartered
4 cloves of garlic
3 medium jalapenos (or to taste)
2 tbsp Celtic sea salt
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 bunch of cilantro, leaves only
1/2 cup whey
fresh tomatoes, stemmed and quartered

Place all ingredients except tomatoes in a blender (put your liquids on the bottom and maybe a few tomato quarters). Pulse until smooth. Pour into a 2 quart pitcher. Process the tomatoes to your liking in a blender (or you could just chop them up), add to the pitcher until it reaches 2 quarts.

Pour into glass jars, leaving an inch of space at the top. Screw on lids and leave on the counter (at room temperature) for two days. Transfer to cold storage.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Water Kefir, Three Ways

We are loving our water kefir around here! Pictured above is our water kefir soda. Click here to watch a video on how to make homemade soda. I feel like our soda turns out best when I leave the grains in the sugar water for 24 hours, then bottle it up with grape juice and leave on the counter for 18 hours. Anything more than that seems to amplify the alcoholic taste and make opening the bottle an explosive mess! Since I don't always remember, or have time, to strain off my water kefir every 24 hours I have been utilizing my water kefir in different ways.

I call this strawberry lemonade. I strain out the kefir grains and pour the water kefir in the blender (about 3 cups), then add enough frozen strawberries to bring the water level up to 4 cups. Blend away! If it's a little too tart, add up to 1/4 cup of sucanat. If you want a more slushy drink, add enough strawberries to bring the water level up to 5 cups.

Today I made smoothies for the kiddos at lunch. I threw in 1 1/2 ripe bananas some frozen strawberries then added enough water kefir to get the consistency right. These had a ginger ale taste to them. This was a hit!

Note: Don't let your water kefir grains stay in the sugar water for more than 3 days unless you are storing them in the fridge. It will harm your grains if they are not "fed" regularly.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Healthiest Hot Dog I've Ever Eaten...

My mother and I have talked about how good those hot dogs look on the Sonic commercials right now. You know the ones I'm talking about, right? Well, today I made my own version - it was good AND it was healthy!

1 slice of whole wheat bread (A hot dog bun is just too much bread for me. Sourdough or sprouted bread would be healthier, but those don't fold as well...)
1 uncured turkey frank
1/2 cultured pickle sliced longways
some grated raw cheddar
a forkful of raw, fermented sauerkraut

Have you ever had a dog with this much raw, cultured goodness? Yum! The possibilities are endless...

Friday, June 10, 2011


I'm fixing this Fasooli recipe from GNOWFGLINS for the kiddos tonight.  I had everything on hand, it is fast and easy, and I've got a date!  It smelled so good, that I had to sneak a few bites.  This is definitely going on my list of things to cook.  And yes, it is a totally inappropriate dish for May in Texas.  I do have some summery recipes coming soon: egg salad, "strawberry lemonade" water kefir, fresh green beans and purple hull peas, summer squash, etc.  All in good time!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Cultured, Garlic-Dill Pickles

I don't have a picture yet because my cucumbers aren't ready, but here is the recipe I have used the past 2 years to culture my own dill pickles.  These pickles are still RAW and PROBIOTIC.  How awesome is that?  And this method is so much easier than canning; however they do need cold storage.

1/4 cup whey
1 tbsp Celtic sea salt (my mother has informed me - from her readings on health and such - that Celtic sea salt is preferred over RealSalt)
1 tsp dill seed
1 clove garlic, whole
3 black peppercorns, whole (or more to taste)
filtered water
fresh cucumbers

Place whey, salt, dill seed, garlic and peppercorns in a quart jar.  Pour about 2 cups filtered water into jar and stir.  Add whole cucumbers or slices into jar until there are 2 inches of head-space at the top of the jar.  Cover with additional filtered water if necessary (you want the cucumbers to be submerged).

Place lids on jars and let sit on counter, at room temperature, 2 days for slices or 3 days for whole pickles.  Transfer to cold storage.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Chicken and Rice Soup

Chicken soup made from a whole chicken and homemade broth cannot be beat! (I know it's 98 degrees outside... stash this away for the fall.)

To make this soup, place a whole chicken in a stock pot and cover with water.  Bring to a boil and skim off the scum that rises to the top.  Reduce heat and simmer until meat is done (45 minutes or longer).  Turn off the burner and carefully remove chicken to a large platter (keep your broth in the pot - it should amount to 3 quarts or so).  Let cool and then pull the chicken off the bones.  (You can use the bones, skin, etc to make bone broth in the crock-pot)

Chop the chicken up into bite-sized pieces and place back in your stock pot with the homemade broth.  Turn the heat back on and add:

1 onion, chopped
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups brown rice (uncooked)
4 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 cup celery (including any leaves), sliced
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp sea salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp thyme
1 tsp basil

Let simmer until veggies are done to your liking.  Enjoy!