GAPS diet

Making the Vegetable Medley

One of the most important ferments in the GAPS™ diet is the vegetablemedley. You can find this recipe in Dr. Natasha Cambell-McBride's book, Gut and Psychology Syndrome. Her recipe is for a bowl ferment, but you can also make it in a jar, which is how I prefer to make it. And this is the recipe we are going to do today! This recipe contains five different vegetables: beets (good for liver and blood cleansing), cabbage (stimulates digestion), carrots (contain vitamin A), and cauliflower (makes it taste better, believe me), and garlic (good for immune support). It makes a very rich and flavorful liquid, which is also a wonderful probiotic drink.

No matter how delicious this is, and how much you like it, drink only a little bit in the beginning to avoid die-off. Respect the ferments, man!

Gather your ingredients and supplies

  • Glass jar, 1/2 gallon

  • Sea salt, 3-4 TBS

  • Medium beet

  • Carrots (3)

  • Cauliflower

  • Cabbage

  • Garlic (5-7 cloves), fresh or fermented

Instructions

To a clean half-gallon jar, add about 1/2 cup of each vegetable.You can add them in any order you like. The main purpose of the vegetable medley is to drink the liquid, so make sure the ingredients you add only fill the jar half way (or a little more). This will create enough liquid to make it worth it!

Add the beets

And carrots

And so on...

Last of all, garlic and salt

When all the ingredients are in the jar, it should be less than 3/4 full. Add filtered water, to the shoulder of the jar. Finally, add a cabbage leaf or two to hold all the ingredients under the water. I add a pinch of salt after the cabbage leaves are in place to discourage bad bacterial growth. All that's left is to tightly screw on the lid and leave it on the counter.

After 7 days, move the jar to the fridge and consume the liquid until it's gone, and eat the vegetable pieces. This can be a perpetual ferment. To do this, daily drink what you need, then replace that amount with filtered water, and continue to leave it out on the counter. Keep up with this process until the vegetables are spent (they turn grey and tasteless).

Before

[Pictures missing in transfer*]

One week later

That's it! You have successfully made the veggie medley! Once you get the basics down, you can experiment with different vegetable combinations (eg. broccoli instead of cauliflower). Let us know your favorite combinations!

Onward!

Vegetable Medley

VeggieMedleyNewandDone-150x150.jpg
  • Glass Jar, 1/2 Gallon

  • 3-4 tbsp Sea Salt ((Himalayan is best))

  • 1 Beet (Medium)

  • 3 Carrots

  • 1 Cauliflower

  • 1 Cabbage

  • 5-7 Garlic cloves ((fresh or fermented))

  1. To a clean half-gallon jar, add about 1/2 cup of each vegetable. You can add them in any order you like.

  2. Add the garlic and salt last.

  3. When all the ingredients are in the jar, it should be less than 3/4 full.

  4. Add filtered water, to the shoulder of the jar.

  5. Add a cabbage leaf or two to hold all the ingredients under the water.

  6. Add a pinch of salt after the cabbage leaves are in place to discourage bad bacterial growth.

  7. Tightly screw on the lid and leave it on the counter.

  8. After 7 days, move the jar to the fridge and consume the liquid until it’s gone, and eat the vegetable pieces.

No matter how delicious this is, and how much you like it, drink only a little bit in the beginning to avoid die-off.

The main purpose of the vegetable medley is to drink the liquid, so make sure the ingredients you add only fill the jar half way (or a little more). This will create enough liquid to make it worth it!

This can be a perpetual ferment. To do this, daily drink what you need, then replace that amount with filtered water, and continue to leave it out on the counter. Keep up with this process until the vegetables are spent (they turn grey and tasteless).

Vintage Food Hack: Fermenting (Part 2)

[et_pb_section admin_label="section"][et_pb_row admin_label="row"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Recently we talked about why I love fermenting so much. If you missed the post, you can read it here. Today, let’s talk about what in the world lacto-fermentation is, and how you can start doing it yourself! [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label="Row"][et_pb_column type="2_3"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"]

First, what lacto-fermentation is NOT:

  • It is NOT making an alcoholic beverage (necessarily)
  • It is NOT taking rotting vegetables and facilitating more rot (that is composting, and it belongs in the garden)
  • It is NOT (necessarily) making things with dairy or into a dairy product
  • It is NOT something only hippies do, modern-day people all over the world continue fermenting in the traditions of their ancestors
  • It is NOT something new, it has been done for centuries, likely as long as humans have been around

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And here is what lacto-fermentation IS!

  • It IS a process of preserving food in a way that keeps the enzymes alive and the nutrition in its natural form
  • It IS a way to eat those beneficial bacteria, which have been shown to aid in digestion, boost immunity, regulate metabolism, facilitate weight loss, and more
  • It IS facilitating the growth of beneficial bacteria and yeast that produce lactic acid (a substance that pathogenic bacteria cannot live in the presence of)
  • It IS easy to “put up” ferments, and very difficult to mess them up
  • It IS safe to eat your own fermented foods, because if they turn rancid instead of fermented, there are obvious signs which clue you in that you should throw it away!
  • It IS inexpensive to make ferments, your only recurring costs are the food you are fermenting, salt and water
  • It IS a lot of fun, and an activity you can do as a group with other interested people

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Have I convinced you yet?

Yes?

Good!

How do I get started?” you might ask.

I’m glad you asked!

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There are a lot of resources for fermenting.

  • Books and blogs: Katz is a leader in the fermentation world, but there are many others as well
  • Online groups: You can join the very active Wild Fermentation facebook group, and there are others
  • Websites: Cultures for Health is a website I visit often. They offer instructional videos, a blog, books and other fermenting supplies, and different starter cultures for purchase.
  • Classes: There are a variety of classes offered if you like the hands-on approach of fermenting. Many people, including myself, offer these classes. A real-foods chef, Monica Corrado of Simply Being Well, regularly offers and other classes--both locally here in Colorado, and around the Americas.
  • Friends: Fermenting is becoming more popular, so ask around. Someone you know may already be fermenting, and probably would love teaching you as you do it together!

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The most important thing about getting started is to just DO IT! There is an aspect of fermenting that can only be learned by doing, feeling and trying it out, and failing! And, because it doesn’t cost much, you can throw it away and try again! Next week I will post a simple ferment recipe--it’s an easy one to start with!

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label="Row"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Disclosure: I am not an affiliate of any of the above resources, I just like them!Happy Fermenting!Onward! [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

GAPS Milkshake

Our recipe this week is a simple, but powerful one! It is called the GAPS™ milkshake, and it packs a powerful punch! This delicious, satisfying and helpful beverage is a wonderful way to daily consume your freshly-pressed juices, and can even be a meal.

The GAPS™ milkshake is mix of juice, protein, and fat. Because it is easily digested, usually in about 20 minutes, it can be eaten when you don't have much time to sit and digest. But because it contains fat and protein, as well as sugar, it can sustain you for a while, often a few hours.

Let's get down to making it! You need a few simple ingredients.

  1. Freshly pressed juices (I like carrots, but you can use any juice mixture)

  2. Sour cream (creme fraische), coconut oil, or another fat

  3. Raw egg (whole or just the yoke)

  4. Raw honey (optional, and only a little!)

Juice the carrot (and/or other vegetables and fruits). I use organic vegetables so I just rinse them off (sometimes). You can see my (not) high-end juicer in the picture! But it works! Don't feel like you have to spend hundreds of dollars to juice (this one was about $40). It is a centrifuge juicer, and I try to consume the juices within 15 minutes to get the most enzyme activity, but again, it works! Successful GAPS is not about perfection, it is about action!

Once you have your juice in a glass, you are ready to add your other ingredients. Add 1-2 raw egg yolks or whole raw eggs. If you do add the white, I recommend using a spring whisk or a blender to break up the white--that is a hard texture to get down! With raw eggs, it is also important to know the source of your eggs (were the chickens healthy) and try not to touch the shell with the egg. If there happens to be any salmonella present, it is likely still on the outside of the egg, not the inside. Of course, there is no guarantee, especially if the eggs are washed (this breaks down the protective layer around the egg), so consume at your own risk! But I have yet to get sick, even using store bought eggs sometimes.

Add the sour cream (a good-sized dollop). The sour cream is there primarily to slow the absorption of sugar from the juice—add to taste. You can also add coconut oil if you are not tolerating dairy (technically this makes it a GAPS Smoothie) Stir, whisk or blend together.

You can add a little honey if you need to. It is better to add some fruit to your juice ingredients instead of honey, but that isn't always an option, especially on early stages. I have found that the egg whites are a little bitter, and when I add a whole egg instead of just the yolk, I often need a little honey to help it go down. That's it! All that's left is to enjoy it!

And it's gone!

As I said, this is a great "meal" for those on-the-go mornings. Especially if you are hungry early in the morning, this is a great thing to drink, as it is not a burden to the digestive system. The juices support your body's cleansing processes, which are often happening from 4am-10am every day. You could also add beet kvass to this beverage as an extra liver cleanser. It can overwhelm the flavor, so I prefer to drink mine separately. Experiment with your preferences, and with the recipe! Let us know how you like it best!

Onward!

GAPS Milkshake

GAPSmilkshake-150x150.jpg
  • Freshly Pressed Juices

  • Sour cream, creme faiche, coconut oil, or another fat

  • Raw Egg ((whole or just the yoke))

  • Raw Honey ((optional and only a little))

  1. Juice the carrot (and/or other vegetables and fruits).

  2. Add 1-2 raw egg yolks or whole raw eggs. If you do add the white, I recommend using a spring whisk or a blender to break up the white–that is a hard texture to get down!

  3. Add the sour cream to taste. The sour cream is there primarily to slow the absorption of sugar from the juice.

  4. Stir, whisk or blend together.

  5. Add a little honey if you need to

With raw eggs, it is also important to know the source of your eggs (were the chickens healthy) and try not to touch the shell with the egg. If there happens to be any salmonella present, it is likely still on the outside of the egg, not the inside. Of course, there is no guarantee, especially if the eggs are washed (this breaks down the protective layer around the egg), so consume at your own risk! 

I have found that the egg whites are a little bitter, and when I add a whole egg instead of just the yolk, I often need a little honey to help it go down.

Beet Kvass

[et_pb_section bb_built="1" admin_label="section" transparent_background="off" allow_player_pause="off" inner_shadow="off" parallax="off" parallax_method="on" padding_mobile="off" make_fullwidth="off" use_custom_width="off" width_unit="off" custom_width_px="1080px" custom_width_percent="80%" make_equal="off" use_custom_gutter="off" fullwidth="off" specialty="off" disabled="off" custom_padding_tablet="50px|0|50px|0" custom_padding_last_edited="on|desktop" prev_background_color="#000000" next_background_color="#000000"][et_pb_row admin_label="row" make_fullwidth="off" use_custom_width="off" width_unit="off" custom_width_px="1080px" custom_width_percent="80%" use_custom_gutter="off" gutter_width="3" padding_mobile="off" allow_player_pause="off" parallax="off" parallax_method="on" make_equal="off" column_padding_mobile="on" parallax_1="off" parallax_method_1="on" parallax_2="off" parallax_method_2="on" parallax_3="off" parallax_method_3="on" parallax_4="off" parallax_method_4="on" disabled="off" background_position="top_left" background_repeat="repeat" background_size="initial"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_style="solid" disabled="off" border_color="#ffffff" background_position="top_left" background_repeat="repeat" background_size="initial"] Beet Kvass is a liver tonic. Anyone can make this simple fermented drink! It requires only a few ingredients, and only a few minutes to "put up." Want to learn how? Good! [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row background_position="top_left" background_repeat="repeat" background_size="initial"][et_pb_column type="1_3"][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type="2_3"][et_pb_text background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_style="solid" disabled="off" border_color="#ffffff" background_position="top_left" background_repeat="repeat" background_size="initial"] But first, some definitions:

  • Kvass: beverage

  • "Put up" a ferment: combine ingredients and set it aside to let it ferment

  • Sea Salt: unrefined salt, salt that is the same way it was found in nature

    • contains many trace minerals, depending on which type it is

    • Celtic Sea Salt, Real Salt, Himalayan Salt, others

    • most fermenting enthusiasts prefer Himalayan for fermenting (it's a taste thing)

    • Shoulder of the jar: the area of a jar where the jar narrows to become the mouth

    • Whey: the slightly yellow, watery stuff that is on the top of yogurt or sour cream

      • you can get your own whey by straining yogurt through an old cotton napkin, or several layers of cheese-cloth

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Ingredients & Supplies

  • 1/2 gallon glass mason jar

  • 1 medium-large beet

  • 2-4 TBS sea salt

  • cold, filtered water

  • 4 TBS whey (optional)

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Directions

  • Cut the beet into 1-2 inch cubes. Do not cut too small or shred the beet!

    • too much surface area and the beets will ferment too fast and create alcohol!

    • you do not need to peel the beets, just wash fairly well and cut off the top.

    • A little organic dirt will add minerals and soil bacterium.

    • Place the cut beet in the mason jar

      • The beets should fill the jar about 1/4-1/3 of the way

      • Add salt to the jar

        • 4 TBS is the traditional amount if no whey added, see tips below

        • Add optional whey

          • if whey is used, you can decrease the salt by half

          • Fill the jar up to the shoulder with cold, filtered water

          • Seal the jar with a metal lid and ring, closing tightly

          • Gently tip and swirl the jar to help the salt dissolve

          • Set on the counter for 3-5 days, until the kvass is a rich purple color

          • Move to the fridge (the beets stay in the liquid)

          • Consume daily

          • You can use the beets for two batches

            • when the liquid is almost gone (about a pint left) then refill with water and salt

            • set on the counter for another 3-5 days

            • when the liquid is gone the second time, discard the beets and start fresh

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Tips and Tricks

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  • My beets are floating!

    • It's okay if the beets are floating-they often do, but will eventually sink. You don't need a weight for this ferment.

    • How much salt?????

      • The amount of salt largely depends on you--your taste, and your climate.

      • The salt is there to inhibit bad bacteria growth until the good bacteria are strong enough.

      • Beet kvass doesn't seem to go bad often, especially in the dry climate of Colorado.

      • I use about 3 TBS salt and no whey, with no problem. No whey! Ha ha ha, get it?

      • People like their kvass with more or less salt, so see how it tastes best to you.

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  • I have a white film on the top and/or the bottom of my kvass.

    • DON'T start over!

    • This is merely the hard working lactobacillus bacterium thriving!

    • You can shake or stir in the white film, or skim it off, if you prefer.

    • I have blue or black, or another color of mold!

      • This is NOT okay. If you find this, throw it out and start over!

      • How much do I take each day?

        • It is generally recommended that you take up to 4 ounces 2x/day.

        • As with all ferments, it is important to START SLOW and increase gradually.

        • It's best to take this on an empty stomach, like first thing in the morning.

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Love beets?!?!?!?

Can't get enough of them?!?!?

Learn about other great ways to eat beets here!

Happy fermenting!

Onward!

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Beet Kvass

BeetKvassDay1-150x150.jpg
  • Glass Mason Jar, 1/2 gallon

  • 1 Beet ((medium-large))

  • 2-4 tbsp Sea Salt

  • Filtered Water (Cold)

  • 4 tbsp Whey ((optional))

  1. Cut the beet into 1-2 inch cubes. Do not cut too small or shred the beet!Too much surface area and the beets will ferment too fast and create alcohol!You do not need to peel the beets, just wash fairly well and cut off the top.A little organic dirt will add minerals and soil bacterium.

  2. Place the cut beet in the mason jar The beets should fill the jar about 1/4-1/3 of the way

  3. Add salt to the jar4 TBS is the traditional amount if no whey added.

  4. Add optional whey. If whey is used, you can decrease the salt by half.

  5. Fill the jar up to the shoulder with cold, filtered water.

  6. Seal the jar with a metal lid and ring, closing tightly.

  7. Gently tip and swirl the jar to help the salt dissolve.

  8. Gently tip and swirl the jar to help the salt dissolve.

  9. Move to the fridge (the beets stay in the liquid).

  10. Consume daily!

  11. You can use the beets for two batchesWhen the liquid is almost gone (about a pint left) then refill with water and saltSet on the counter for another 3-5 daysWhen the liquid is gone the second time, discard the beets and start fresh

  • My beets are floating!

    • It’s okay if the beets are floating-they often do, but will eventually sink. You don’t need a weight for this ferment.

    • How much salt?????

      • The amount of salt largely depends on you–your taste, and your climate.

      • The salt is there to inhibit bad bacteria growth until the good bacteria are strong enough.

      • Beet kvass doesn’t seem to go bad often, especially in the dry climate of Colorado.

      • I use about 3 TBS salt and no whey, with no problem. No whey! Ha ha ha, get it?

      • People like their kvass with more or less salt, so see how it tastes best to you.

  • I have a white film on the top and/or the bottom of my kvass.

    • DON’T start over!

    • This is merely the hard working lactobacillus bacterium thriving!

    • You can shake or stir in the white film, or skim it off, if you prefer.

    • I have blue or black, or another color of mold!

      • This is NOT okay. If you find this, throw it out and start over!

      • How much do I take each day?

        • It is generally recommended that you take up to 4 ounces 2x/day.

        • As with all ferments, it is important to START SLOW and increase gradually.

        • It’s best to take this on an empty stomach, like first thing in the morning.

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Vintage Food Hack: Fermenting (Part 1)

[et_pb_section admin_label="section"][et_pb_row admin_label="row"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Ever kept a book around forever unopened? Then you finally crack it open and realize you have been missing out?I recently had this experience with The Art of Fermentation by Katz. I loved the idea of this book, (and of having time to read all its 438 pages) but I just never did. In fact, I didn’t even open it, not once! That is, until I had to write an article on lacto-fermentation. I opened “the book” to see if it would be useful and credible as a reference. Wow, was it ever! If I didn’t have a deadline, I would have sat down and read the entire thing cover to cover then and there! [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label="Row"][et_pb_column type="1_3"][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type="2_3"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Side note: In the category of things you should know about me. I love to read, and I am a procrastinate-until-the-last-minute-but-somehow-get-it-done kind of person. Hence, my situation. Okay, back to the point. [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label="Row"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] I wrote a pretty good article, if I do say so myself. It was informative and official and all that jazz (and you can read it here). But what I want to share with you, my readers, is the joy and excitement I get when I learn about and think about fermenting! [/et_pb_text][et_pb_image admin_label="Image" src="https://www.bewellclinic.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/Ferments.jpg" show_in_lightbox="off" url_new_window="off" use_overlay="off" animation="off" sticky="off" align="left" force_fullwidth="off" always_center_on_mobile="on" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] [/et_pb_image][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"]

Why, you ask?

Well let me tell you... [/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"]

  • I LOVE learning to do things that our ancestors knew how to do. I am an Old Soul, and I try to make the most of every opportunity I have to do things the old-fashioned way.
  • I HATE throwing food away. It comes from growing up in a large family, I suppose. Or perhaps my Hungarian ancestry. But fermenting allow me to preserve food longer.
  • I LOVE using fermenting as a hack! I can get more out of my vegetables by fermenting them because it increases the nutritional availability of what is present in the vegetable naturally, without adding anything else!
  • I CAN buy vegetables in season, and locally!
  • I GET probiotic benefit from the vegetables, and variety matters.
  • I KNOW what I am eating in my sauerkraut, banana peppers, etc because I added the ingredients.
  • I SAVE money by making my own ferments.
  • I GET to know and connect with what I am consuming, which is an important part of thoughtful eating.

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Does that jazz you up at all?

Can’t wait to get started, you say?

Keep calm and hold on.

Soon we will talk a little more about what fermenting is and how to get started.

Stay tuned!

And Onward!

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Just a few fermenting options...

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Say No to Bone Broth!

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Bone broth! It’s all the rage right now! But I don’t recommend it for most people. Find out why, and what I recommend doing instead.

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label="Row"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Why avoid bone broth? Bone broth is good, and contains high levels of minerals and amino acids, including glutamic acid. But large amounts of glutamic acid can be a problem for some people, especially those who have a leaky gut. Although some people can tolerate bone broth right away, it is advisable for everyone to start with meat stock, and then slowly add bone broth.If you want more details about the differences between stock and broth, and what things like glutamic acid are, Biodynamic Wellness wrote a wonderful article that you can read for more information! [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label="Row" make_fullwidth="off" use_custom_width="off" width_unit="on" use_custom_gutter="off" padding_mobile="off" allow_player_pause="off" parallax="off" parallax_method="off" make_equal="off" parallax_1="off" parallax_method_1="off" column_padding_mobile="on"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="center" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid" custom_padding="10px||10px|"]

Important note: you can get a die-off reaction from both meat stock and bone broth. This is a sign of healing, but care should be taken to slowly increase the amount as the person is tolerating. You should always discuss issues with the practitioner you are working with.

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How to make Meat Stock:

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Ingredients:

  • Meat (80%) and bones with joint(s) (20%)
  • Organ meats (optional, but recommended)
  • 2-3 carrots
  • 1-2 celery stalks (on early GAPS, remove the celery before eating)
  • 1 onion
  • 4-6 whole peppercorns
  • 3-4 quarts filtered water (approximately)
  • 1 bunch of fresh parsley

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Directions:

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  • Prepare your meat
    • cut up chicken to expose the joints
    • braise or roast the beef/buffalo/pork meat briefly (for added flavor)

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  • Add meat and bones to stockpot or dutch oven
  • Add filtered water, enough to just cover the meat (3-4 quarts)

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  • Turn on the heat, bring to a boil

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  • Cut up onion, carrot and celery

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  • When water comes to a boil, reduce the heat and skim the scum (foam)
    • the scum is impurities, dirt, blood, bacteria, etc
    • if you miss this, it's ok but it does make it taste better!

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  • Add chopped vegetables and peppercorns
  • Simmer for 1.5-3 hrs (chicken) 2-4 hrs (lamb & pork), 3-5 hrs (beef, etc). Do not cook longer than 6 hrs, this will increase the glutamic acid

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  • Add the parsley to the simmering stock 10 minutes before it's done

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  • Allow to cool to room temperature before placing in the fridge

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  • Enjoy the delicious and nutritious stock that you made yourself!

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If you are new to this, start by making a pot of stock every week, consuming a little of it daily. You could make different soups with it, or just drink some stock (hot or cold) as a beverage or snack.

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Extra Tips:
  • Meat stock should be a meal--eat it as a basic soup, or add other vegetables and spices to change it into something completely different.
  • Don't throw out the best parts! If you are dealing with picky eaters (including yourself), you can blend the parts of the meat you don't want to eat (skin, joint cartilages, organ meats) with a little stock liquid. It will make your stock slightly thicker, but it will also increase the nutrition--meaning you will heal faster!
  • DO NOT THROW OUT THE FAT! This is a vital food for healing. You can keep it on your stock and mix it in as you consume it, or put it aside in the refrigerator and add it to your food one serving at at time.
  • Most people debone the meat after the stock is cooked. When you do this, you should be left with just a pile of bones--everything else is considered meat.

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  • Store the bones in a freezer bag and when you have a full bag, you can use them to make bone broth later--when you are ready for it!
  • You can strain the stock into jars (it’s easiest to do this when it is warm) and use it as a base for other soups. Eat or freeze the meat. Again, meat stock is a meal, all the components can and should be eaten.
  • If you want to freeze meals ahead of time, it's easier to freeze soup instead of stock. Stock tends to expand and can crack the container it is frozen. Soup is less likely to harm the container it is frozen in.
  • This is only the basic recipe. Use other vegetables and fresh herbs to make a variety of different soups. 
  • It is best to add salt to each serving of soup or stock, instead of salting the entire pot. Salt should be consumed as desired. Always use a whole sea salt (Celtic, Real Salt, or Himalayan).

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Beneficial Bacteria: Why Lacto-ferment?

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Fair warning: the following post was originally written as an article. It is longer and more technical than a normal blog post. It contains great information, including the history of fermentation and some basic fermentation chemistry, but may be more than you need to know. Feel free to read (or not) accordingly!

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The Benefits of Bacteria: How Lacto-fermentation is Good for You

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] The history of lacto-fermentation is rich and alive. There are signs of people groups fermenting their food as far back as we have found artifacts in various archaeological digs. It remains a mystery how the first people discovered fermentation. However, as science has discovered now, a large part of “our” body’s makeup is not our own DNA, but rather a body-shaped shell containing a symbiotic environment teeming with bacteria, yeast, protozoa, and other microbes. Therefore, consuming probiotic foods is not only beneficial, but it is vital to our very life. Without the symbiotic relationships working in our body, we would be unable to function. We often use the word “culture” to describe the ideals held in common by a group of people. In the same way, when we use “culture” to describe food preservation, we are also recognizing the grouping of different organisms, working together in symbiosis. This relationship, both inside the body, as well as out, demonstrates a beauty that not only brings tactile benefit, but is in many ways soul-soothing. You cannot ferment without paying attention to, and giving credit and help to the beneficial microbes that will, in turn, help to bring health and balance to your own body. [/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"]

So what is lacto-fermentation?

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Lacto-fermentation is one of the ways humans have used (for centuries) to preserve food. It does not necessarily involve milk, as the lacto-  prefix seems to suggest, but it involves creating an environment that encourages the growth of lactic acid producing bacteria. These type of bacteria work symbiotically with our bodies, and have been shown in research to be helpful in metabolism, detoxification,  immunity and allergies, preventing dental caries, kidney stones and cancer, and in reducing anxiety, cholesterol and blood pressure.If that list doesn’t convince you that you need to be consuming probiotic foods daily, scientists have also found that the nutritional value of most foods is increased through the fermentation process. An additional benefit, which is decidedly less important in the American culture, is food preservation without refrigeration. [/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"]

How does it work?

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] The concept of lacto-fermentation are simple. An environment needs to be created that promotes the growth of lactic-acid producing bacteria (LABs).  Many harmful and pathogenic bacteria and viruses are unable to live in the presence of lactic acid, so in this situation the body is working symbiotically with the LABs to control the environment of the body to be hostile to unwanted microbes. When we create a correctly hostile environment, beneficial flora are allowed to flourish, and unwanted flora moves on. It is very simple to create this desired environment, at it’s most basic, it only takes salt and water. The purpose of the salt is to create an environment that the LABs, and only the LABs, can thrive in. Other bacterial growth is stunted by contact with salt, allowing the LABs to flourish, eventually producing enough lactic acid that the salt is then unnecessary. In addition to preserving the food, the lactic acid helps with other aspects of fermentation, such as pre-digesting our food (starting the digestion process before it even enters our body) and nutritional enhancement. [/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"]

Why have we moved away from lacto-fermented foods?

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] There are several reasons why we stopped fermenting our foods, the two main reasons being refrigeration and the “sterilization” or pasteurization movement. The first is simple to explain and understand, with refrigerators, we began to have the luxury of keeping food longer by keeping it cold. Previously, with only a few exceptions, people had two options--eat the food they hunted or gathered very quickly, or find some way to preserve the food. With the advent of electricity, refrigeration became available to almost everyone in a developed country, and with it the ability to store fresh food for a longer amount of time. Spoilage happens at a much slower temperature, so even fresh meat will keep for about a week. Because of this, and the accessibility of grocery stores, we can buy our refrigerated food, bring it home to our own refrigerator, and eat at our convenience throughout the week. No need for preservation here.Secondly, since 1857 when Louis Pasteur discovered that heating (killing) bacteria created more control over the process of alcoholic fermentation, we have been using heat to sterilize, or pasteurize, allowing us to store food, even at room temperature, for longer periods of time. However, because pasteurization kills the LABs as well as harmful microbes, there is a risk of spoilage, rancidity or putrefaction associated with any pasteurized food if contamination occurs.  [/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"]

Can you learn to ferment?

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Anyone can ferment--the process is very simple, almost foolproof, and safe. It is also fun, relaxing, grounding, adventurous, and sometimes exciting! Even if food prep is not exciting to you, the process is fulfilling and satisfying. And when you know that you have prepared food that has numerous health benefits, costing very little money or effort, you can sit back and feel accomplished at a job well done. And as you grow more comfortable with the process, you can experiment with different recipes--some in a book, some made up on the spot. That is the beauty of fermentation! You can ferment anything! And by following some basic principles, it’s really rather difficult to mess up! [/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"]

Wonder how to get started?

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] There are several good resources available as you start on your fermentation journey. Books, like Sandor Ellix Katz’s The Art of Fermentation, will give you comprehensive instruction on this subject. There are website such as Cultures for Health, and various YouTube channels that will give written and video instructions on different ferments. Finally, there are various people (including myself) who teach the basics of fermentation in a classroom setting. Search these people out and sign up for a class--the information you will learn is invaluable to your health! [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label="Row"][et_pb_column type="2_3"][et_pb_image admin_label="Image" src="https://www.bewellclinic.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/DoubleFermentingKombucha_300x400-72.jpg" show_in_lightbox="off" url_new_window="off" use_overlay="off" animation="off" sticky="off" align="left" force_fullwidth="off" always_center_on_mobile="on" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] [/et_pb_image][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type="1_3"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid" custom_margin="15px|||" custom_margin_last_edited="on|phone"]

I like to call my ferments my children--because they need to be taken care of in the same way--you need to create a safe environment for them, feed them, keep them clean, and most of all, love them!

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label="Row"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Part of the art of fermentation is the intention you put into them. When you are grateful for the health and support they are going to bring you, it will fill your soul (and usually makes them taste better). While, at times, the weight of responsibility for making ferments is heavy, it is always overshadowed by the benefits--physically and spiritually. So what are you waiting for--start on this journey today! [/et_pb_text][et_pb_divider admin_label="Divider" color="#000000" show_divider="off" divider_style="solid" divider_position="top" divider_weight="5px" hide_on_mobile="on" height="15px" /][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Citations:

  • Katz, Sandor. 2012. The Art of Fermentation: An in-depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes from Around the World. Chelsea Green Publishing, White River Junction, VT.
  • Katz, Sandor. 2003. Wild Fermentation: the Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods. Chelsea Green Publishing, White River Junction, VT.

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