Jun 27, 2014

My Kids' Favorite Ferment (food-probiotic)

I bought this jar less than a week ago.
 It's a few tablespoons from being gone.  Almost single handedly, the kids have eaten it.  I did add some to potato salad (it is also yum in deviled eggs).
This jar came from Drug Emporium.  Whole Foods sells Bubbies sauerkraut, but I don't think they sell the dill pickle relish.  

If your family is hesitant to eat ferments - like sauerkraut, this is an excellent "baby step" or one to start with.  It tastes strikingly similar to pasteurized dill relish. 

Fermented foods (or food-probiotics) not only nourish the body but also protect us from harmful organisms while contributing to immunity.  According to this article from the American Psychological Association 95% of the body's supply of serotonin is manufactured in the gut - this influences mood and GI activity.  You cannot have good overall health if you have poor gut health.
And the price is right, too.  It won't break the bank if your people don't like it.  (Just pass it on to my family.  We'll gobble it up.)

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Jun 23, 2014

Nutrient Dense Kid (or Adult) Snack

Pioneering dentist, Weston A. Price, wrote in his book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration that fish eggs in primitive cultures were reserved for babies, young children, and mothers raising families (page 477).

This snack is not a frequent one in our home.  It's a splurge. Fish eggs are not cheap.  McDonalds french fries are cheap.  Want to guess which one is better for you?
Above my 4 year old daughter is eating whitefish roe, which is slightly salty, on sprouted bread and butter (with chives).  She said, "It feels like popping balls in my mouth!" 

Below, my 17 month old son ate it on bread and sour cream (the butter was cold and too hard to spread when I made his.)
Perfect finger food for a baby.
I served some as hors d'oeuvres to gluten- and dairy-free friends with avocado and cucumber.
We also tried salmon roe with orange bell pepper and cucumber.  I think the salmon roe has a slightly stronger flavor.  And, since the eggs are larger than the whitefish roe, the texture can be more of an issue for those who are texture sensitive.  If you are new to the fish egg scene, start with whitefish roe and work your way up to the salmon roe.
Peoples of traditional cultures unaffected by modern foods knew instinctively which foods were nutrient dense.  Salmon roe, or also known as Ikura in sushi eating circles, packs a powerful punch when it comes to nutrient density.  A small serving of only one tablespoon provides ample omega-3s to nourish the brain an neural system.  You'll also get protein, good fat, iron, vitamin A and calcium.

I purchased this caviar at Whole Foods.  Vital Choice is a reputable on-line company that has a superior product, and cheaper if you are able to buy in bulk.  It is shipped frozen to your door.

One more picture for you.  This was taken from the fish case at Whole Foods.  You will see two kinds of salmon (middle and far right).  One is farm-raised, the other is wild caught.  Can you tell from the color which one is more nutritious?
Animals with legs should be farm-raised.  Fish are best caught in the wild.  Notice the deep red color on the far right?  That is healthy because the wild-caught fish was eating food it was meant to eat, not corn and soy on a farm.  

Any fans of caviar out there?

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Jun 20, 2014

Dempsey Bakery

This is me with Paula Dempsey.  She's the mastermind behind the famed gluten-free bakery here in town.  I met her the first time tonight and just love her.  I could have talked with her all night.

She told me a story about a little boy coming into the bakery.  The boy had such severe reactions to peanuts that he had to have a service dog with him at all times (to sniff out peanut particles even in the air.)  He came over to her with big tears in his eyes and said, "Thank you for having a bakery where I can eat a cupcake." **sniff!!**  I was crying as she told me the story.  She said, "Every child should get to eat a cupcake."  And that is one reason Dempsey Bakery exists.

From the Dempsey Bakery website:
In 2008 the first member of the Dempsey family was diagnosed with health issues that required a Gluten-Free diet. We learned it was a genetic disorder, and one-by-one three generations of Dempseys discovered that although they had different symptoms, the common denominator was gluten. 
Not wanting to face a lifetime loss of pretty birthday cakes and special treats for the grandchildren, Paula Dempsey put her considerable energy to work on her dream - finding a Gluten-Free baker and starting a bakery that serves her family and yours.
Here are some pictures of her family:

And would you believe the bakery has support FUN groups for kids?
Because I don't have to eat gluten-free, I've not sought out this bakery in their 2.5 year existence.  And because it is a bakery, I didn't realize they also serve lunch.  (Have I just been living under a rock?  Don't answer that.)

Let me just tell y'all - their stuff is YUMMY.  Like, really good.  Go visit.  Taste for yourself.

I was over-the-moon impressed when Paula told me that not only do they bake without gluten, but also without soy or nuts.  Impressive.  Or maybe I should say, "that's nuts!"

Go and taste some of their goods at the Gluten & Allergen Free Event (Saturday 10am-3pm) or find them downtown Tuesday through Saturdays at 4th and Cross Street.


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Jun 18, 2014

Gluten & Allergen-Free Wellness Event

The Gluten & Allergen-Free Wellness Event of Little Rock

LITTLE ROCK, AR: ECHO Event Solutions in collaboration with local Support Groups, are proud to present the premiere Gluten & Allergen Free Wellness Event of Little Rock, AR. on June 21, 2014 at Metroplex (Clear Channel Building) Colonel Glenn Rd., Little Rock, AR.

This event is sponsored by Udi’s Gluten Free Foods, Glutino, and Enjoy Life Foods, and in collaboration with ECHO Event Solutions, who have brought many local and national vendors into the spotlight in cities across the nation. This event will also have a strong emphasis on local Little Rock vendors like: Dempsey Bakery, Green Corner Store.

The goal of the event is to provide a safe environment where people can learn about gluten and allergen free foods and learn from experts on how to do so successfully. Equally important is the fundraiser for Camp Weekaneatit which has paid for several children to go to a safe summer camp.

The event also highlights local and national companies that are producing exceptional gluten-free/allergen-free products that are equivalent or superior to typical products that contain "Availability of high-quality gluten-free and allergen-free breads, baking mixes, pizzas and restaurant menus has exploded over the last few years, making it much easier and more satisfying to live gluten/allergen-free, but not all products are easy to find and are costly.

Our events give attendees a chance to try before they buy. We bring the best of allergen free to the community and connect them to the people who need more options and education." said Nikki Everett, Event Director of ECHO Event Solutions, Chapter Leader of R.O.C.K.(Raising Our Celiac Kids) Charlotte and mother of a 13-year-old daughter with celiac disease.

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that damages the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food. When people with celiac disease eat foods or use products containing gluten, a protein in wheat, rye, barley and possibly oats, their immune system responds by damaging or destroying villi—the tiny, fingerlike protrusions lining the small intestine that allow nutrients from food to be absorbed into the bloodstream. Without healthy villi, a person becomes malnourished, no matter how much food one eats. Researchers have found that more than 3 million Americans have the disease, or about 1 in 133 people, and that the prevalence of the disease is rising. The only treatment for celiac disease is complete elimination of gluten in the diet. Other conditions that may be improved by elimination of gluten in the diet are autism and Type 1 diabetes. There are many links to celiac disease and other sensitivities to foods like dairy, casein, and soy.

The Gluten & Allergen Free Wellness Event will occur from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm. and will include educational presentations by experts in the fields of celiac disease and illnesses which benefit from a gluten free diet. Please see event features here.

Below are the featured presentations:

Dr. Stephen Wangen - Co-founder and Medical Director of the IBS Treatment Center, and the author of two popular books, “The Irritable Bowel Syndrome Solution” and the award winning “Healthier Without Wheat: A New Understanding of Wheat Allergies, Celiac Disease, and Non-Celiac Gluten Intolerance.”

Nikki Everett – First founded R.O.CK. (Raising Our Celiac Kids) Charlotte, NC Chapter 2008 and also Gluten & Allergen Free Wellness Events in 2011. Travelling the country, advocating, writing the blog Allergy Free Back Roads, and doing events.

Sema Dibooglu - Missouri native and one of the first gluten free teen bloggers in the US and the world, “Eat Without Gluten”

Dr Betsy Hendricks - local Arkansas physician and author of “Zero Point” who specializes in the treatment of auto-immune disorders

Click here to enter to win a free ticket.

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Jun 15, 2014

Gluten & Allergen-Free Wellness Event {ticket giveaway!}

This Saturday, June 21, 2014

Metroplex (Clear Channel Building)
10800 Colonel Glenn Rd.
Little Rock, AR 72204

I have four tickets to give away for this event.  Leave a comment and email address or other way for me to contact you on this blog post for a chance to win.  (If you are reading this via email, be sure to go to the blog and post a comment.)  Please only comment if you are truly interested in going to this event.

Admission: $10 for adults
children free (under age 13)
Click here for more details.

Some of the featured speakers include Dr. Stephen Wangen (who cured his own IBS), and Arkansas's own Dr. Betsy Hendricks.


****This giveaway is now closed.  The winners were Shannon, Sallie, Elene and My Fair Ladies***

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Jun 9, 2014

On Vaccines and the AutismOne Conference

This post is written by a guest blogger, Connie Newcome.  I met Connie about seven years ago when I lived in Arizona - her daughter and I are good friends.  Connie has dedicated most of her adult life to teaching others and helping them use  natural remedies and herbs to heal their bodies.  As a result of her years of research, she is very passionate about vaccine awareness.  She sent the following in an email.  With her permission it is re-published here.  -- Julie
A couple weeks ago I went to the AutismOne conference in Chicago and I feel some of my impressions and the things I learned are important so I wanted to share them. I think this conference has been held annually for at least 10 years now.

One important thing: It is expected 1 out of 2 babies will be on the autism spectrum by 2025...that is 11 years from now. Did you get that? ONE out of TWO...that is 50% of the population.

The mood was upbeat as many of these 1000 plus parents are FB friends and coming back every year to the conference allows them to connect again. Plus they are hoping for more answers for their damaged kids.

Down's Syndrome, Lymes, Hashimoto's and other illnesses that can be linked to neurological issues were also on the table for discussion...autism is only part of the spectrum of problems kids are having these days.  Forced vaccinations for health care workers was also a current concern.

I did not feel upbeat. I thought to myself that this conference should never need to happen. Children should not be this sick.

You would not find any mothers there who would vaccinate again. These are the ones who learned the hard way. This was not about statistics, but real live people who know the facts regardless of the media propaganda.

There were MANY speakers including medical doctors, authors, chemists, homeopaths, cranial sacral therapists.. ....many PhD's and other fancy titles.

Dr. Rashid Buttar who wrote the book "Nine Steps to Keep the Doctor Away" was one featured speaker. He has worked successfully with many autistic kids. His main theme was "toxicity." His own son became autistic after vaccinations which put him on a course for figuring out how to heal his son. His son is perfectly normal now. I think he is 16.

Dr. Buttar said that these kids are non-excreters, thus when a saliva or urine test (and maybe others) is done they do not show mercury or other heavy metals. But once the treatment begins the levels of these heavy metals are very high. 

He said the immune system is developing for at least a year after a baby is born. Mother's milk is an important contributor. Vaccines are immunosuppressive and thus given before a year they make no sense and are very risky.

If you go to VaxTruth.org you will note that JUST the Hepatitis B shot will give a child 14 times more aluminum than is considered safe for a baby. That is only the aluminum....vaccines contain many more toxic ingredients than aluminum.

Marcella is the lady behind the site, VaxTruth.org. She is taking a lot of leadership to be sure that there is a huge pushback against vaccines. More could be said but you can visit her site. She has even walked around with sandwich boards on busy street corners to proclaim the truth that your child does not need shots to get into school.

It was well known at this conference that some vaccines are made using aborted fetal tissue. I know there are people who refuse to accept this as truth, but you can google this easily and see the facts even by the agencies who believe in vaccines. 

Dr. Mayer Eisenstein was one of my favorite speakers. Dr. Eisenstein is a medical doctor who has practiced medicine for over 40 years. He was a protege of Dr. Mendelssohn, the doctor who wrote "Confessions of a Medical Heretic." That book forever changed my mind about medicine and doctors. 

Get this: Dr. Eisenstein's patient population of 50,000 plus over the years is mostly minimally or totally unvaccinated. In this group there is virtually no autism, no respiratory illness,  diabetes, asthma, allergies. Last winter he had 4 ear infections out of 6,000 clients...this is in Chicago where it is cold, wet and miserable in the winter.  Dr. Eisenstein said that anti-virals, antibiotics and vaccines have NO PLACE IN MEDICINE! He insisted that pediatricians are  the arch enemy of the child.    

Dr. Eisenstein has a degree in law as well as in medicine and he and his partner specialize in writing vaccine waivers. West Virginia and Mississippi do not allow for vaccine exemptions. If you live there you may want to move!!!!

The herd immunity was thrown out. The so called immunity from vaccines wears off. That means a huge segment of the population...adults...are unprotected.

Another idea I liked was that you cannot force an adult to take a medication for something that he definitely has such as schizophrenia. But with children you are forcing them to be part of a medical experiment for something they do not have!

Vaccines are a HOT BUTTON topic...people are very opinionated on both sides of the argument. If you read anything on the internet you will find this out quickly!

Another thought...read the package insert that comes with vaccines. NO ONE reads these. Tell your pro vaccination friends to insist on reading this before they vaccinate. Have them go to sites where they can read vaccine ingredients. Would you drink this in your drinking water?

We heard from Patricia Finn, a lawyer who is defending Mary Check against the state of New York. Mary was damaged by a vaccine and now her mother and her doctor are both saying she cannot have more. The state of NY still insists she needs more vaccines. This goes to court the end of June. 

I kept thinking of the mothers weeping in Ramah...over the children they lost to King Herod who wanted to kill Jesus. The weeping continues to this day as our children are sacrificable for the sake of corruption, coercion, ignorance, power, greed, misinformation, and money. God loves children...after all they were His idea. Learn, become informed and do what you can to protect yours!!   

Yours for a healthier life and day! 
Connie Newcome
Inman, Kansas


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Jun 7, 2014

Sunday Farmers' Market:: Bernice

Bernice Garden Farmers' Market is the second largest farmers' market* in the city.   Open Sundays from 10am-2pm on S. Main Street at Daisy Bates, it is an Arkansas grown vendor only market.   Vendors include small farmers, community gardeners, and quality food crafters. It is one of two markets in the state that also accepts SNAP/EBT benefit cards (Fayetteville Farmers' Market also accepts these).  All of the vendors at Bernice have the ability to do card/debit transactions.

*The largest farmers' market in Little Rock would be the River Market but many of their products are not from Arkansas.

Vendors at the Bernice Garden Farmers' Market include:
North Pulaski Farms
Laughing Stock Farms/Hardin Farms
Barnhill Orchards
Goatroaper Farm
Dunbar Garden
Mylo Coffee
Boulevard Bread Co.
Kent Walker Cheese
Garden Press Juice
Victory Garden Project/NLR Community Farm
New South Nursery
Jelly Madness/Martin Family Farms
Frontier Leather
Pratt's Family Salsa
Pup Eats
Gromo's Gourmet
Ethan's Heirlooms
Whole Harvest Farms
Main St. Apothecary
Falling Sky Farms
Little Rock Urban Farming 

Food Trucks Include:
Usually only have 2-3, they rotate appearances. 
Waffle Wagon
Southern Gourmasian
Southern Salt
Blackhound BBQ
Beast Food Truck
Loblolly Ice Cream

Pop on downtown this Sunday afternoon and have a look around!

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Jun 6, 2014

Lacto-fermented Cauliflower with Curry

I'm always on the hunt to find something healthy my children will eat...especially if it is fermented.   This week's FarmShare basket provided a couple good sized heads of cauliflower.  Earlier I made grain-free tabbouleh with one.  While I was processing the cauliflower for the tabbouleh, the thought came to mind to continue with the the rest and ferment it.  I'm hopeful the texture will be enough like rice that I can sneak it onto their food without the children's knowledge. 

When it comes to fermenting, it is helpful to use the freshest, most organic produce available.  In a recent blog post by The Healthy Home Economist about the best probiotic to take, she mentions soil based organisms (SBO).  If you've read the book The Maker's Diet, Jordan Rubin also talks about the benefits of these.  Because of soil based organisms, I love produce that is grown locally - by a farmer I trust not to use chemicals.  Most of the time I don't even rinse the veggies.  I want those SBO in my ferment!   (I do cut out any visibly bad spots in the produce.)
That said, if you cannot obtain local and organic produce - second best would be organic from the grocery store.  However, even conventionally grown produce is great for fermenting.  Eating something fermented is the goal.  As with your financial investments, diversity is the name of the game.  Try to get multiple ferments in your body.  My goal (not always reached) is one ferment a meal.  Sometimes I'm able to get two ferments in a meal!  And sometimes I forget all together.
I followed this recipe except I decided to process the cauliflower instead of leaving it in larger florets.  Several reasons for finely chopping the cauliflower:

1. The food processor was already out and being used.
2. More cauliflower will fit in a jar when it is pulverized.
3. Maybe I can hide it in other foods and get my children to eat more.
Basic instructions:

1.  In a quart jar, dissolve 3 tablespoons of sea salt (non-iodized salt) in one full quart of water.  This is your brine solution.

2.  In a different jar, add your cauliflower - either in florets or chopped finely.  If you want to flavor this with curry, add curry to your jar.  The curry in my pantry is quite spicy and I used only 1/2 tablespoon.  The recipe I based this on called for 2.5 tablespoons.  You can omit the curry and it will still be delicious.

3. I like garlic so I added one clove to the top of the jar.

4.  Pour the brine solution over the cauliflower, leaving 1-1.5 inch head space and screw a lid on tightly.  Cover the jars and leave in a cool spot (if summer) and warm spot (if winter.)  The kitchen is hottest in summer, so my fermenting jars are on the mantel in the living room.  Recently I read on the Pickl-it site that UV rays can interfere with the fermenting process so be sure to cover the jars. 

5. You may need to "burp" the jars if the liquid gets too close to the top of the jar.  On day 3, I usually open the jar and taste.  If it tastes pickled then it's ready to go in the refrigerator.


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Jun 4, 2014

Grain-Free Tabbouleh

Who knew it was cauliflower season?  In my FarmShare basket yesterday, I had a bounty of cauliflower.  I'd seen this post from The Kitchn where they made couscous from cauliflower and wanted to try it with tabbouleh. 
 Chop cauliflower into florets and put these in your food processor.
 Pulse until you have grain sized particles.
 Bring to a boil a small amount of water in a giant sauce pan.
 Add pulverized cauliflower and steam (with lid on) for about 2 minutes.  I checked and stirred with 30 seconds remaining and needed to add more water.
It's plenty yummy to eat simply steamed.

I decided to add traditional tabbouleh ingredients for a salad.  Yummo.

Grain-free Tabbouleh recipe:

1 head cauliflower, steamed
1 bunch of parsley, stems removed and chopped 
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 cucumber, chopped
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved (or red pepper, chopped)
1/8-1/4 c lemon juice
1/4 c olive oil, or more
feta cheese crumbled, to taste
salt and pepper, to taste.

Serve warm (right away!) or refrigerate.

Up next: lacto-fermented cauliflower with curry.  :)

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