Tuesday, October 15, 2013

a blog is born

I will no longer be posting at GAPS for T2 but instead at Deductive Seasoning, a blog about cooking, diabetes, disability, fatigue, homesteading, nutrition, science and anything else that strikes me as interesting to write about.

I have always enjoyed BBSs, Usenet, IRC, web discussion forums and lately Facebook, because I like the give-and-take in chatting with other folks.

However, sometimes it gets a bit tiresome to explain the same thing in one conversation after another and I always thought it'd be handy to have a blog to post so I could write something once, and then provide a link whenever the topic came up again.

And also to save my wisdom for all posterity. ;)

Though I liked the idea of a blog, for years, I never got around to starting one. Every topic I was interested in discussing was blogged about elsewhere. I commented on those blogs and joined the conversation, but never started my own because someone else was already blogging my interests.

Monday, September 16, 2013

all about almond and coconut flours - with six bonus muffin recipes

how to bake with almond flour/meal and coconut flours with bonus recipes for blueberry muffins, pumpkin pecan muffins, bacon and cheese muffins, banana walnut muffins, apple streusel muffins and zucchini-carrot-raisin muffins

Though I'm no longer on GAPS, having spent the time to set up this blog, it rather makes sense for me to continue posting here. Today, I want to talk about gluten-free and/or GAPS and/or paleo and/or low-carb baking.

Generally, I have decided not to post recipes as... well, Google and you can find a bazillion of them. I have decided instead to post tips about food, and only my really, really best recipes.

I'm a tad lazy generally about baking. I have done a lot of ordinary baking for my husband and before that my daughter, things like pumpkin pecan bread, banana walnut bread, oatmeal raisin cookies, zucchini cake and carrot cake. I've done it for several reasons, first to limit the sugar used compared to bought bakery products, second to avoid the inflammatory oils by using coconut oil or butter, and finally because my baking usually has a large dose of fruit or vegetable in it, thus has redeeming qualities not found in Twinkies.

For myself, I don't care about these foods much. I have a very minor sweet tooth. My issues with limiting carbohydrate have always had more to do with starchy foods; I'd rather have a pizza than a cake, I crave pasta not chocolate. And if I have to provide sweetness for myself, the laziness kicks in and I'd rather dessert be a bowl of yogurt with some honey stirred in or a handful of berries with some cream.

Overall, the experimenting I have done with more healthy baking has had a great deal more to do with savory baking than sweet. I'd like something to make sandwiches with, or to dip in the yolks of my soft-boiled eggs. I have developed three recipes I really like for savory breads: a corn bread, a cheese roll (from tapioca flour) and a nacho cracker, which I'll post about later. Today, it will be muffins (but includes a savory bacon & cheese muffin!)

When first introduced to the world of gluten-free baking, I just found the whole idea a tad overwhelming in that there seem to be entirely too many flours involved. Recipes that have THAT many unfamiliar ingredients are just too much for me. I don't want to buy teff flour and sorghum flour and xanthum gum and am entirely too lazy to mix 4 or 5 flours just to wind up with flour. I admire those who do this sort of baking for their families, but I'm just not interested myself.

But I have done a good bit of baking with almond flour and coconut flour over the years and have developed some opinions about them - and handful of truly awesome recipes.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Jackie's simplified food plan

Jackie's simplified food plan

Sometimes, it is easy to get caught up in minutiae and lately, reading a lot of arguments amongst nutritional gurus, it seems all they care about is the details, missing the vast majority of what we agree on.

I find similar arguments occurring in my head when I get caught in the details sometimes, depending on which research I've read most recently and which symptoms are bothering me most.

We know what's wrong. We know most of us mostly eat processed foods full of crap.

Monday, July 29, 2013

how to raise more free-range eggs than you can possibly eat for $50 a year

first eggs from our first flock
first eggs from our first flock

(everything you ever wanted to know about backyard chickens but were afraid to ask)

A while back, I saw someone had posted about raising chickens and getting free-range eggs for only a couple bucks per dozen. While that is an accomplishment, we raised backyard chickens WAY cheaper than this and we're planning to do it again.

We are receiving our new batch of chicks August 9th, as I'm well enough to start raising chickens again. I thought I'd post about how we did it with our original flock and what we're doing differently this time around.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Italian sausage soup

Italian Sausage Braising in Beer by wickenden, on Flickr
Italian Sausage Braising in Beer by wickenden, on Flickr

I've not been posting here for two reasons; first, I'm no longer on GAPS, except in the sense that transitioning off GAPS is a move towards regular Traditional Food. And second, I've just been busy and distracted.

However, I made up a batch of Italian sausage soup today, and thought it was worth sharing the recipe since it is legal on full GAPS, assuming you use a legal Italian sausage.

Alternatively, you can mix up a legal sausage yourself. Sweet or mild Italian sausage is ground pork, fennel and salt and pepper. If your pork is lean, you could fry this up in lard or coconut oil. If you prefer hot Italian sausage, it's the same ingredients with some crushed red pepper added.

The soup itself is adapted from a recipe I originally got off the alt.support.diet.low-carb Usenet group many years ago. Basically, it is cooking several pounds of vegetables in such a manner that it all is flavored yummily with Italian sausage. It's been one of my absolute favorites for years.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

thoughts on diabetes prevention

Crash by Images by John 'K', on Flickr
Diabetes: Protect our Future,
by International Diabetes Foundation

November 14 is World Diabetes Day.

The overall theme for the years 2009-2013 is "Diabetes Education and Prevention" with this year's slogan being "Diabetes: Protect our Future."

diabetes education

I see no point in educating directly, as I know of two outstanding sources.

Jennifer's advice to the newly diagnosed
If you only read one page about blood glucose control, this should be it, even if you are not yet diabetic. Jennifer discusses how to use a blood glucose meter to learn about managing your bG.
Blood Sugar 101
If you want to learn about diabetes and controlling blood glucose, but don't want to get a biochemistry degree, Jenny Ruhl's site is for you as she translates what is known for laymen very comprehensively.

diabetes prevention

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

stage 3/4/5 update: crash & burn

Crash by Images by John 'K', on Flickr
Crash by Images by John 'K', on Flickr

This is a bit of a long story; the summary is I had a major adrenal crash, likely due to too much detoxing, and thus temporarily ceased GAPS. Up until the crash, I was enjoying the food just fine, and my deterioration was gradual and didn't seem extreme, so I just puttered my way through stages 3, 4 and 5 until BOOM!

stage 3 food

Stage 3 adds avocados, pancakes made from nut butter, eggs & squash, scrambled eggs and fermented vegetables.

I added avocado with enthusiasm, as it's a favorite.

I will write another post about prepping nut butters and meals later, but I wasn't crazy about the pancakes overall and only did them a few times.

I was quite pleased to add the fermented veggies as opposed to just the juice.

I didn't care about scrambled eggs. I was so incredibly enthusiastic about soft-boiled eggs! I haven't had them since childhood, and was just loving the heck out of them. I have my method perfected, so the white is cooked entirely through, just the outside of the yolk is slightly cooked, and the rest is completely yummy. So I wasn't very interested in scrambled eggs, nor the GAPS-pancakes as I just wanted soft-boiled eggs.

My other fond childhood food that came back was yogurt & honey. As an adult, I mix plain yogurt with fruit and usually a bit of sugar-free DaVinci syrup of one flavor or another. The DaVinci syrups, being entirely chemical and having no food value whatsoever are completely illegal on GAPS. And at this stage, fruit remains illegal too. But just a cup of plain yogurt, mixed with a tablespoon of raw honey, is utterly scrumptious. Maybe a lot of this is due to the whole childhood memory thing, but this became my go-to snack in stage 3.

I enjoyed a pumpkin custard a great deal during this stage also.

Stage 3 recipes will be posted shortly.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

my adrenal history

Vertical section of kidney, from Grey's Anatomy, on Wikimedia
Vertical section of kidney,
from Grey's Anatomy,
on Wikimedia

This is an image from Grey's Anatomy showing a sliced kidney; the adrenal glands sit on top of each kidney. So if you've ever had a kidney infection, that spot in your mid-lower back where you felt pain is pretty close to where your adrenals are located.

When I had adrenal issues, I drove the moderators of the Adrenals Yahoo! group half nuts with my demands for explanations for every recommendation they made. Val was pretty patient about providing me references when she had time, but one thing it never occurred to me to ask was why she said people should not try to do any sort of detox while healing their adrenals; she just said detox was hard on adrenals. Since I had absolutely no plans to do any detoxing at that time, I never asked, and don't have references. I will likely look them up at some later time, but for the purpose of this post, I am just accepting this as a very true statement.

This will be a very long post as I need to cover my previous health history, which is a bit of a long story.

But before I begin with that, I need to point out that I am not a doctor of any sort. The labcoat on my avatar is because I used to be a biochemist. Furthermore, you ought not take avatars seriously anyways, even if I add a stethoscope! ;)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

crockpot carnitas

uruapan carnitas by goodiesfirst, on Flickr
uruapan carnitas by goodiesfirst, on Flickr

During stage 4, I had carnitas, sliced avocado and sauerkraut for dinner.

This recipe does most of the cooking in the crockpot, but you do have to broil a bit at the end to get that characteristic crunchiness.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

crockpot pulled pork and turmeric green beans

Pulled pork by beardenb, on Flickr
Pulled pork by beardenb, on Flickr

This was my dinner for stage 2. I had a 10 lb pork shoulder in the freezer, and since GAPS is all about fatty meats, it seemed like the thing to do. However, stage 2 only allows stewed meats, so I saved the other half to make carnitas for stage 4.

This recipe is time-consuming since you both brine and then crockpot the pork, but requires very little hands-on time.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

egg drop chicken soup

Stracciatella alla romana by Sifu Renka, on Flickr
Stracciatella alla romana by Sifu Renka, on Flickr

Of course, eggs and soup being stage 2 foods, my mind immediately went to egg drop soup. But this is NOT your takeout type egg drop soup! It's thick and full of meat.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

stage 2 was foggy

Fog by Rickydavid, on Flickr
Fog by Rickydavid, on Flickr


brain fog

As I write this, I am currently in stage 4. I had a lot of brain fog throughout stage 2 & 3, so while I kept a few notes to remember what was going on, I really wasn't up to writing updates, or doing much of anything.

To my mind, the big question is... what is the difference between a detox reaction and a food intolerance and how do I know which I'm experiencing.

I've always been a bit suspicious about detox reactions. On the one hand, I completely understand that the Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction actually exists and is real and documented.

On the other hand, it seems like every type of snake oil out there claims all the good effects are due to the snake oil and the bad effects to Herxheimer reactions. This strikes me as very convenient for those who sell snake oil.

In the GAPS book, Dr. Campbell-McBride makes it clear that both detox reactions and new food intolerances can occur, and in either case, she feels you should back off on the changes that brought on the reaction and go slower. She believes detox should be done slowly and gradually so as to minimize symptoms.

Cara, author of the What Can I Eat Now? 30 Days on GAPS Intro Handbook, has an article on her blog What is a Healing Crisis? in which she discusses the difference between a healing crisis (detox) and a reaction (food intolerance).

Saturday, October 6, 2012

ginger squash soup

Butternut Squash Soup! by prideandvegudice, on Flickr
Butternut Squash Soup! by prideandvegudice, on Flickr

Technically, this is a stage 1 food, but I decided this soup, along with a couple soft-boiled eggs, would be my breakfast for stage 2.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

these are a few of my favorite posts...
One of the advantages of posting to blog carnivals as I've been doing lately is that I am exposed to so many new blogs. And I've screened them all for you to bring you the best of the best! This month, many of them are science-oriented, but I also found a few awesome recipes & other tidbits.
Crockpot Pumpkin Custard for Fall (GAPS Legal)
Cara, author of the 30 Days on GAPS Intro ebook, What Can I Eat Now?, has an utterly scrumptious and easy pumpkin custard recipe for the crockpot. Given that I am currently drowning in neck pumpkins, I need great pumpkin recipes. Thanks Cara!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Stage 1 meatball soup

Meatballs for Soup by Helga's Lobster Stew, on Flickr
Meatballs for Soup by Helga's Lobster Stew, on Flickr

Unlike the other stage 1 recipes, I expect this one may have to be shared with my non-GAPs hubby.

This one is a bit lower-carb than I'd like, but hits the calorie mark well.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

I survived stage 1

Green Eggs and Ham book cover, from Wikipedia
Green Eggs and Ham
book cover, from Wikipedia

I like ginger. I use piles of fresh ginger in stir fries and other dishes; I like dried ginger in gingerbread, I like ginger ale, I like candied ginger. So I thought I'd love ginger tea. I tried it hot, I tried it cold, I tried it diluted. I do not like ginger tea.

I do not like it, Dee-I-be.
I do not like this ginger tea.

I could not, would not, on a boat.
I will not, will not, with a goat.
I will not drink it in the rain.
I will not drink it on a train.
Not in the dark! Not in a tree!
Not in a car! You let me be!
I do not like it in a box.
I do not like it with a fox.
I will not drink it in a house.
I do not like it with a mouse.
I do not like it here or there.
I do not like it ANYWHERE!

<Forrest Gump voice> That's all I have to say about that. </Forrest Gump voice>

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Stage 1 Chicken Soup

slow food: slow roast chicken dinner by ebbandflo_pomomama, on Flickr
slow food: slow roast chicken dinner
by ebbandflo_pomomama, on Flickr

I've decided that since I have been successful at "hiding" organ meats in the broth I use to make my turkey stuffing for years, that I'd try to "hide" some liver in this soup.

Thus I begin by making chicken liver cubes before starting the soup.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

vintage post: boeuf bourguignon

vintage post

The point of "vintage" posts is to highlight older posts than in my monthly favorite post feature.

I don't want to ignore really kewl stuff just cause it was posted before I began blogging!

But this is REALLY vintage, in that it is from a time before blogging... before the Internet... before BBSs... before home PCs... before even electronic calculators...

It's ALMOST before me, as I was a year old when the show started, from a time when food shows were live with mistakes and all and actually intended to teach the viewer to cook. Before there were any foodies, there was Julia Child.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

status as I start GAPS

Insulin by Sprogz, on Flickr
Insulin by Sprogz, on Flickr

I didn't realize it was this close and I hadn't yet gotten my current status up here. IME, this is the sort of thing that is VERY easy to lose track of if you don't write it down at the time.

I am currently controlling my bG with metformin, a MDI regimen of Lantus and Novolog, controlling the side effects of the insulin with K-dur, supporting my liver with silymarin, taking FiveLac as my probiotic, and treating my heart disease with Niaspan, CoEnzymeQ10 and fish oil.

Friday, September 14, 2012

patronizing scientists - part 2

Right 2Know March (GMO Labeling) by Daquella manera, on Flickr
Right 2Know March (GMO Labeling) by Daquella manera, on Flickr

These people aren't clever enough to know what kind of food they want to eat.

This is the "scientific" reason why we don't want to label GMOs, because these people don't know what's best for them. We don't want to start a consumer panic, where people decide not to eat GMOs by mistake!

Funny, it looks to me like they have an opinion!

In patronizing scientists - part 1, I covered how those of us who do completely understand the pros and cons of recombinant DNA can still be opposed to GMOs.

In this part, I'm just going to explain how lazy these scientists are.