September 28, 2013

Weekly Recipe Wrap-up

Hi everyone. I just got back from my 24 hour trip to Vancouver for an interview. And guess what... it was raining! Shocking I know. I guess it was only fair since it didn't rain once when I was there in August. Mother Nature is just making sure I know what to expect. I have to say these 24 hour trips for interviews are a little exhausting. And expensive. Good thing we make so much money as residents.

But you don't want to hear about my interview adventures. Nope that's not why you come here. You come here for food. Delicious food. So here is this weeks Weekly Recipe Wrap Up. There are some yummy looking things here if I do say so myself.
Let me know if you make any of these!

1. Bacon Wrapped Cheeseburger from GI 365


I do love myself a good burger. And bacon. So really this one is a no brainer. And just think of all the good fat you are getting with these if you make them with grassfed beef and avocado! Your body will be thanking you. 


2. Pumpkin Spiced Ice Cream from MyWholeFoodLife


It is officially pumpkin season. And while I may not like the weather this time of year I do like things made with pumpkin. This ice cream looks delicious if you ask me. And easy to make! 

3. Chicken Wings with Maple and Meyer Lemon Sauce from Fresh4Five


Saucy chicken wings! Yum. I am definitely intrigued by these wings with a lemony twist. They are on my to make list for sure! 


4. Salted Mexican Chocolate Ganache Tarts from SlimPalate


Now all you SCDers are probably cursing me because chocolate isn't allowed on the diet. I know. So shoot me. But these little desserts just looked too delicious not to share. Although I don't consider any chocolate made with sugar to be "paleo or ancestral" I know a lot of people out there still use it. If I were to make these I would use 100% chocolate or sub with cocoa powder. If I do make them this way I will let you know!

5. Baked Butternut Squash Chips from ACoupleCooks


It's no secret that I love squash. These chips look amazing. Although I would probably leave out the cheese to make them less inflammatory and paleo legal. I am sure these would work with other kinds of squash too. I can't wait to try them!


Well that's it for now folks. Let me know if you end up making any of these and how they turn out! 
And as always if you have any questions just let me know!

September 25, 2013

Harvest Time Soup (SCD, Paleo, GAPS)

I don't like fall! There I said it. Fall just means that winter is right around the corner, and it's no secret that I am not a winter lover. Never will be. Yet I live in Calgary. It's ironic I know.
This year we are actually being spoiled and it is still quite warm (I probably jinxed us just writing this) and I have been trying to take as much advantage of this as possible!

Speaking of which, did I mention I ran a half marathon last weekend. Yep I did. And by some miracle it was the fastest one I have ever done. And I came in 4th. Take that residency!

Despite my hate for the colder weather the fruits and vegetables that are around this time of year are some of my favorites. Apples, squash, carrots, pears, green beans... oh yum
And as the weather cools off I begin craving warm comfort type foods, like the soup I am about to share with you. It's a good one I promise. Even according to the the non-paleo eaters in my family.

Harvest Time Soup (SCD, Paleo, GAPS) 

Ingredients

2 lbs squash of your choice (I like butternut or buttercup)  
2 lbs carrots
2 ripe pears
6-8 cups filtered water or homemade chicken broth (depends on how thick you want your soup) 
1.5 TBSP cinnamon
1 TSP sea salt
1 TBSP organic vanilla 
4 TBSP grassfed butter or coconut oil 
Optional: 1 can coconut milk/ 1 package of coconut cream 


Directions

1. Peel and chop your squash into cubes
2. Place squash and water/ broth in a large pot and place on medium heat on the stove. Let it cook
3. While the squash is cooking, peel carrots, remove ends and then add to the pot
4. Add cinnamon, sea salt and vanilla to your soup and allow to simmer for about 15 minutes
5. Chop pears so seeds are removed (you can leave the skin on) and add to pot
6. * If using coconut milk/ coconut cream add this now
7. Allow soup to cook until carrots and squash are tender (usually another 15-20 minutes)
8. Once squash and carrots are soft add the grassfed butter or coconut oil
9. Allow soup to cool somewhat (I usually wait about 30 minutes)
10. Use your immersion blender and blend soup so that all the chunks are removed (I blend it right in the pot) 
11. Serve and enjoy! 

This recipe yields a large pot of soup and I usually put some aside to freeze right away. 




The pictures really don't do this one justice I am afraid. You will just have to trust me. 

Do you have any favorite soup recipes? I would love for you to share them!
Are you loving the fruits and vegetables that are around this time of year?

And as always feel free to email me with any questions or to leave feedback! 

September 22, 2013

White "Chocolate" Dessert Cups (SCD, Paleo, GAPS, Dessert)

Happy weekend everyone! Are you up to anything exciting?? Hopefully you are enjoying some sunshine (maybe your last chance!) and not working too hard.

Now I can't really call these chocolate because there is not a speck of cocoa in these babies... but the cacao butter does give them a chocolatey flavour... you will just have to trust me. Sorry for misleading you. But they are still delicious. Try eating just one. I dare you.

I made two versions of these. Plain white chocolate cups and blueberry filled chocolate cups. I have to say I prefer the blueberry version more but you will have to experiment to find your favourite!


White "Chocolate" Dessert Cups (SCD, Paleo, GAPS, Dessert)

Ingredients

1 16oz jar of coconut butter (I buy mine here
3/4 cup cacao butter (can be found here
1/3 cup honey (local and raw if possible) 
1 TBSP organic vanilla 
Pinch sea salt 

Optional: blueberries, chopped raw nuts (soaked and dehydrated preferably), raspberries etc. 


Directions

1. Place a medium sized saucepan on medium heat on the stove 
2. Add all your ingredients to pan and heat until the coconut butter and cacao butter have melted
3. Stir well to incorporate (Once your mixture is melted do not allow to sit for very long or your ingredients will start to separate)
4. If adding additional ingredients (blueberries etc) stir in now
5. Place your silicone muffin cups into a muffin pan and pour a small amount into each cup (to about 1cm in depth) 
6. Place your muffin pan in fridge for 3-4 hours or until chocolates are firm
7. Remove from silicone cups and enjoy! Keep these in the fridge or freezer



* This recipe will yield about 36 chocolate cups 
** If you do not have any silicone baking ware simply line a pan with wax paper and pour mixture into this instead
*** You could also use a silicone bread pan and then cut chocolate into pieces after refrigeration (see photos below) 







The ones from the muffin liners definitely look more appealing. But if you aren't picky about looks I wouldn't rush out and buy silicone muffin liners just for these!

What do you think? Will you try these? What would you add to yours? 
If anyone makes these let me know how they turn out! 

September 08, 2013

For Your Reading Pleasure

So I am all moved into my new house. Well kind of. I am still surrounded by boxes. But I do have internet now which is rather important. It also means that I can write another blog post.

Now starting off on a grain free diet can be rather intimidating at first. Our society is based so much around grains and fast carbohydrates that it will take a bit of time to adjust. But once you do you have to trust me that it really isn't that difficult to avoid the things that you used to eat all the time. I can honestly say that I do not crave grains anymore.

These are the books I have read along the way that have helped me learn the logic behind grain free eating and what to eat when on this type of diet

1. Breaking the Vicious Cycle by Elaine Gottschall 



This was the first book I read when I initially transformed my diet. This book outlines the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, otherwise known as the SCD diet. The diet was initially created for patients with Crohn's, Ulcerative Colitis and Celiac disease but is also useful for anyone with IBS. The whole idea behind the diet is that our modern foods allow certain strains of bacteria to proliferate within our intestines so that the makeup of the intestinal flora is altered in a negative fashion. The diet works to restore the intestinal flora to what it should be to allow for better absorption and overall decreased inflammation in the body. The diet is grain free, dairy free, mucinous food free, soy free and additive free. Another major component of the diet is homemade lactose free yogurt that is fermented for 24 hours to allow all the lactose to be eliminated. The yogurt is a great way to help restore the intestinal flora to what it should be. There are many websites out there dedicated to the SCD diet but a couple very helpful ones are:
http://pecanbread.com 
http://www.breakingtheviciouscycle.info

There are also a few great yahoo groups dedicated to the SCD diet: Pecan Bread and the BTVC groups.

2. Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Weston A Price 


This book is a great read for anyone looking to understand just how different our modern diet is from what our ancestors ate. Weston A Price travelled around the world profiling cultures that had not yet been touched by modern civilization and analyzed their diets, dental profiles and physical makeup. What he found is that those people living on traditional diets were free from many modern problems such as tooth decay and other diseases (including TB). These cultures relied on raw dairy, grass fed animals, sea food and fats, minimal grains that were prepared in traditional methods, roots, tubers, minimal fruits and vegetables and rarely natural sweeteners. He also saw how drastically the health of even one generation can change once these cultures adopted a more modern diet including white flour and sweeteners. The physical results are impressive, and well documented with photographs in the book. If you are ever looking to find products in your area that are based on traditional methods such as grass fed meats or raw dairy your local Weston A Price Chapter is a great place to start. Calgary has their own Yahoo group that you can join if you are in the area to find out about local resources, events and current issues regarding the food industry. 
For example, did you know that currently the Alberta government does not allow grass fed milk or dairy products to be removed from the farm unless destined for a processing facility? If you don't agree with this I urge you to contact your MLA and let your voice be heard so that we have a chance of enjoying grassfed dairy products in Alberta. 

3. Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Natasha Campbell McBride


This diet is very similar to the SCD diet, but was developed for patients with psychological or neurological disorders including ADD/ADHD, Autism, Schizophrenia, Dyslexia etc. This diet also focuses on the intestinal flora as a source of many systemic problems in the body and works to restore the natural balance. It is also grain free, soy free, additive free and diary free. There are subtle difference between the two diets but overall they are pretty similar. There is a greater emphasis on fermented foods in the GAPS diet than on the SCD among other differences. Since my focus is on internal medicine I don't get to see many patients with these problems but I am very interested if anyone out there has treated patients with this diet successfully? 

4. Practical Paleo by Diane Sanfilippo  


Now I didn't actually have this book when I initially started my grain free journey but I recently bought this one for my boyfriend and I have to say I am pretty impressed with it. It is definitely more than a cookbook (although it does have some delicious recipes inside!). The book outlines what a paleo diet is, how to stock your kitchen to eat this way, how to alter the diet for your individual needs and how to shop and cook in a paleo way. It also outlines other common dietary problems including FODMAP intolerance and eating for autoimmune conditions. The paleo diet is a bit more relaxed than the SCD diet is, allowing foods like sweet potatoes, cocoa powder, seeds and other mucinous type foods. Otherwise the diets are pretty similar. 

So have I overwhelmed you yet? Have any of you read these books? Are you going to add them to your collection if you haven't? 
Overall I don't think there is one diet that works for everyone, and you will have to experiment with different foods to see what works for you. But I would urge you to try going grain free for at least one month and see if it makes a difference to the way you feel. Anyone I know that has done this has not gone back to their old way of eating. 

I hope everyone had a good weekend! As always feel free to ask my any questions! 

September 01, 2013

Weekly Recipe Wrap-Up

Well everyone summer is officially almost over. It's sad. I love summer.
I am in Vernon again surrounded by lakes and fresh fruits and vegetables. It's glorious. And we had duck again last night. I am one happy lady let me tell ya!

So I am in the middle of moving and am currently homeless and staying at my Aunt and Uncles house since we don't get possession of our new house until the end of next week. So I haven't been spending too much time in the kitchen. Needless to say I don't have any of my own recipes for you. But I do have a weekly recipe wrap up for you to enjoy.

Weekly Recipe Wrap-up 

1. Scones from An Aussie with Crohns 


I found this new blog recently called "An Aussie with Crohns" and there are some great looking recipes on there let me tell you. I am pretty excited to try these scones I must say. Don't they look delicious! I used to love scones before I went SCD and I haven't found a good replacement yet so I have high hopes for these babies. When I make them I will be leaving out the egg and will probably use coconut milk instead of almond milk. I will let you know how this goes. 

2. Meat Bagels from Ditch the Wheat


Now it is no secret that I love meat so the idea of this meat bagel is rather appealing! I will have to find a way to make these without eggs so I will let you know how that goes. This recipe comes from the blog Ditch the Wheat. 

3. No Tomato Chilli from A Girl Worth Saving


Now a lot of people can't tolerate tomatoes so this tomato free chilli is rather genius if you ask me. This recipe is made with coffee if you can believe it. Plus all sorts of other great ingredients like grass fed beef and sweet potatoes. It comes from the blog "A Girl Worth Saving" which is a new blog to me but one that I will be exploring more in the coming days. 

4. Blueberry Cream Pie from GI 365


Now I don't know about you guys but I love blueberries. And right now they are everywhere! Oh it's wonderful. I will be stocking up and freezing some to tide me over for a while that is for sure. This pie recipe comes from a great blog GI 365 and is made with coconut milk, grass fed gelatin and other healthy ingredients. I can't wait to make this one! I will let you know how it goes.

Well everyone I think that is good for now. I need (yes need) to go enjoy some more sunshine by the pool. Yes life is tough. Really tough. Hopefully I will be able to post some new recipes of my own soon, once I have a home again.