HealingForReal

Category Archives: Raw Milk

Father’s Day Gifts for the Real Food Dad

rfdadweb2Father’s Day is June 16th! I actually ordered Father’s Day gifts more than 2 days in advance this year. Yay for me! Way less stress.

My husband has typically been hard to shop for because he’s picky about what he wears, eats, does, uses, etc. It’s always been hard to step out of my ‘normal’ eating, wearing, doing, using life to imagine what he could possibly want. This year, choosing his gifts was SO much easier! I FINALLY understand and live the Real Food lifestyle, so I think I know what he wants. We’ll see if his reaction is any different this year. (Photos and update to come!)

For a couple years I’ve just had him choose his own gifts. Last year, we got him a Fiskars 9210 Long-Handled Swivel Grass Shears and The Fiskars 6201 18-Inch Staysharp Max Push Reel Lawn Mower. He loves that he can go out and mow the lawn early and enjoy the quiet at the same time. And it doesn’t use any fuel except the energy of the pusher. He picked it out himself though, and that’s not much fun.

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Here are some of the ideas I had for gifts for the Real Foodie Dad: This year there were a bunch of things I thought he’d like. I settled on a couple, but I won’t say which ones. (Shhh!! It’s a secret!)

We make real ice cream from raw cream a couple of times a week, but he would like it to be MORE. Making a big batch in our regular ice cream maker takes a lot of cream. Plus, he doesn’t like chocolate so the rest of us ‘SUFFER’ with fruit flavors! 🙂 The Hamilton Beach Half Pint Soft Serve Ice Cream Maker would let him make his own when he wanted. It comes with two bowls. The blue version is only $14.99!!
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Something else I know he would want is a food dehydrator. We have an old ‘infomercial’ dehydrator that works OK but it is huge and bulky. He’s been wanting one that’s easier to dry nuts and seeds on. And maybe some homemade jerky.
The EXCALIBUR 3900 would do the trick.

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We’ve been talking about Earthing lately, so I think he’d appreciate some kind of device. Shoes, sheets, straps…there are all kinds of fun things to ground you to the Earth when you’re not running around barefoot. I loved these Pluggz flip-flops and kind of want them for myself.  If I were buying something for ME, though, I’d get the sheets. 8 hours of uninterrupted grounded-ness!

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He takes his water to work every day in an Aquasana glass bottle. Sometimes it gets banged around a bit. This water bottle holder doesn’t curve up at the top like a lot of them do, so it would fit perfectly on his glass bottle to give it a little protection and keep it from sweating on his desk.

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Sometimes Real Foodie dads are Real Foodies because of Real Foodie moms. He may eat the good food willingly but not necessarily know why his wife is filling him full of yummy grass-fed beef steaks and butter and ice cream. In our case, I was the last to know, but if the Real Food dad in your life needs some good reading for the summer, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Weston A. Price is the perfect gift.
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Whatever Father’s Day gift you decide to get your Real Foodie dad, you’d better get it soon! It’s just around the corner!

The Month in Review – Link Love

May has been a crazy month! I taught a class at my kid’s school this term, so my house suffered miserably. This last week of May I finally got things under control again and I have a bunch of good stuff going on in the kitchen.

I have milk souring on my counter for THIS cottage cheese recipe from Homemade Mommy. (Update…I finished the process and this cottage cheese is amazing. I’ve done other methods and this is BY FAR the easiest and tastiest version!!)

I also have a sourdough starter getting all bubbly using THIS method from Cheeseslave.

I made THESE fruit snacks, from Butter Believer, which my kids LOVED!!

The kids and made up our own recipe for THESE easy popsicles

I became a huge Gouda Cheese fan because of THIS post on the amazing benefits of Gouda by Real Food RN.

And…I’m almost to the end of The Nourished Metabolism by Elizabeth Walling of Living the Nourished Life. SO informative! My goal for June is to get my temp up!!

JUNE!! It’s here! Time to reevaluate goals and update the calendar. The kids’ CHORE calendar, that is. 😉 I think *I* will read a book!

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Easily Separate Cream From Raw Milk – Video

When I first started using raw milk, I noticed the cream sitting right on top, but I just shook it up before pouring to get full fat milk each time. As I’ve gone further into the Real Food lifestyle, I make butter, ice cream, creme brulee, whipped cream and such from the raw cream. It took me a while to figure out how to efficiently get the cream out of that gallon container.

Some people suggested using an expensive cream separator. Um…no. Others suggested a turkey baster, which I tried but always got a bunch of milk with it and had a heck of a time cleaning it out. I had read that you can use a fancy drink dispenser, but some people didn’t like that the spout was too high on the dispenser and…I didn’t have one.

I finally read about poking a hole in the bottom of the milk jug and thought. “I can do that!” My first attempt got milk everywhere. It took another person to get the jar ready for the quick switch and the hole didn’t exactly make for neat pouring. Got some cream…along with a big mess.

I put some thought into it and came up with a similar plan that works beautifully! I made a little how to video for clueless people like me! The pot I use in the following video is called a Chef’s Pot and it came in the Wolfgang Puck stainless set I got myself for Christmas. A large bowl would work as well. So, here’s my method! It works and it’s not messy! My 6 year old was filming instead of standing by ready to catch the cream in a jar. Enjoy the high budget film (I paid him in yogurt)! Bumper music by ZenoFi – AKA my oldest son. Let me know if you have other easy solutions for separating cream from raw milk!

This post is also shared at My Cultured Palate, Thank Your Body

Oh, Sweet Ricotta! This Was Supposed to Be Yogurt.

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This is the story of a failure that turned around. This blog is not about how much I know about real food or how great I am at making all of it. It’s about MY personal experiences and some of those will definitely be experiences at FAILING. I am sharing my failures so that you can laugh with me and learn with me. I am SO not an expert at this stuff. The only way I will become one is by DOING IT, whether I fail or succeed. So…here’s my semi-fail for the week:

This week, my first attempt at yogurt FAILED. I tried this recipe and it didn’t thicken at all. I figured maybe it needed more time but I could see little curds in there and knew it was past the point of yogurt consistency. Still, I am so in love with raw milk, it’s not even funny. Not only because it tastes great and has a bunch of nutrients I NEED, but because it is so forgiving. If I mess up a recipe, the mess still has uses! As an example, my first attempt at fresh mozzarella was somewhat of a failure, but guess what… It still tasted awesome on a pizza.

When I saw that my yogurt hadn’t thickened at all, I looked up how to attempt to save it. I tried heating it again, but it just ended up all curdled. I thought it was a lost cause. Not a lost cause. Turns out it made a nice sweet (yeah, I used a flavored yogurt for the starter) ricotta. The kind that goes in a breakfast danish – only better! This morning’s breakfast…sweet ricotta on einkorn sourdough toast. Just checked on my second try at yogurt using live cultures instead and it has succeeded! I made sure the temp stayed up by putting some jars of hot water in with the jars of yogurt and it has firmed up nicely! It will go in the fridge to cool and by afternoon, the kids will have a great after school snack. I’ll have to add some honey because this batch was earmarked for savory ricotta if it failed. Nothing wrong with having a plan B.

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How Real Foods Made My Plantar Fasciitis Worse

plantarThose darn real foods! Raw milk, bone broths and sprouted grains have taken a toll on my poor feet. How is this even possible, you ask? It’s been about 4 weeks since I committed to eating at least 80% real food instead of my usual of less than 50% (depending on the day and my cravings for processed treats and sweets). The first noticeable change – increased energy. I sit down to rest between tasks as I have for the past few years dealing with autoimmune issues and the side effects of the drugs that come along with them, but I don’t stay there to recover for an hour or so anymore. Within a few minutes I think of something else that needs to be done, most likely cutting grids into my settling cheese or feeding the sourdough starter, and I pop up and go do it. My poor feet aren’t used to all the standing and running around completing long-neglected tasks. They scream at me when I head up the…STAIRS! By the end of the night, they kind of hate real food. I, however, will not back down.

After just a short time eating mostly real foods and NOT eating processed foods, I have successfully replaced a couple of my pharmaceuticals with natural supplements(NP doctor approved). My joint pain is no worse, and if I think about how I felt a month ago, I’d even say it’s a little better. I am optimistic for the first time in years. My energy level is almost incomparable. My husband says he’s surprised at all of the things I’m getting done lately. I am surprised. My feet are surprised.

What have I changed? A lot.

  • I am eating a lot of raw whole milk products I make myself. Kefir, sour cream, mozzarella cheese, ice cream, whey.
  • I am eating organic local pastured meats and eggs, making broth from the bones and using it in my cooking.
  • I am eating fresh (or lacto fermented) whole organic fruits and vegetables, especially fatty ones like olives and avocados (and no – I’m not gaining weight from eating more fat, I’ve lost 5 lbs, although that’s not my main focus right now).
  • I am drinking lots of filtered water and using lots of good quality sea salt.
  • If I have sugar it is in the form of raw local honey, succanat or grade b maple syrup.
  • If I have grains, they are whole, organic and usually sprouted or soaked.
  • I am taking fermented cod liver oil (seriously!) and a couple other supplements to help me digest and heal quicker.
  • I am replacing chemical versions of my household cleaners and beauty products with natural non-toxic formulas.
  • I am expending energy in enjoyable and stress-free ways.
  • I am attempting to get more sleep.
  • I am FEEDING my body the nutrients it needs to heal instead of putting emphasis on restricting entire food groups.

I expect to progress more and more as I heal and change my lifestyle, but if the changes I’ve seen so far were the only ones to ever happen, I would still be thrilled. I’ll take sore feet over days in bed anytime. Besides, thanks to my awesome friend Catherine, and her recommendation of the book Every Woman’s Guide to Healing Foot Pain, I can work with sore feet as I keep on changing for the better.

This post is also shared on Holistic Squid, My Cultured Palate, Thank Your Body, Food Renegade, Our Heritage of Health, Mamaandbabylove,Butter Believer

Pretty Cheese – No Microwave

The first time I made mozzarella, it wasn’t pretty. It was a crumbly mess. (See last image below). It tasted SO great on homemade pizza so wasn’t a total loss, but I wanted to know what I did wrong. After reading a bunch of different cheese-making sites, I figured it out. I had used Pioneer Woman’s recipe on her site, but because the husband is not a fan of the microwave, I skipped the microwave steps and just tried to get all the whey out by kneading. Now, I understand that getting the curds warm enough to melt together is key. Not wanting to use the microwave, I thought about what else might work. It was a gamble, but crumbly cheese is still good cheese, so I went for it. (On a side note, I also decided that since the recipe is the same for cottage cheese, I would make 1/3 of the gallon into cottage cheese.)

I used the standard mozzarella recipe: (some references – Pioneer Woman, cheesemaking.com)

1/4 tablet of vegetable rennet dissolved in 1/2 cup filtered water
1 1/2 tsp citric acid
1 gallon RAW local full-fat milk
1 tsp salt

I used two pots. One was heating about 6 cups of water on low and the other was for the milk. I poured the gallon of milk in one of the large stainless steel stock pots and turned the stove on med heat.
I sprinkled the citric acid over the milk and stirred it in. I heated the milk to 85 degrees, turned off the burner and poured the dissolved rennet water into the pot and lightly stirred again and then stilled the milk. It sat for 5 minutes until it had set. I cut through the set in a grid pattern. (At this point I took out 1/3 of the curds and put them in a bowl to sit longer for cottage cheese). I heated the curds and whey to 105 – until the curds started to melt and stretch. Using a slotted spoon, I scooped out the curds and put them in a colander in a bowl and drained the whey off.

Here’s where recipes call for putting the curds in the microwave, and here’s where my method differs. I worked some of the whey out with my hands, salted the curds and kneaded it just enough to pack the curds together. I placed the whole ball into the pot of heated water (I would guess about 110-120 degrees) and let it sit for about 20 seconds and I pulled it out and kneaded and stretched the ball and then put it back in the water one more time and pulled it out after 20 seconds and formed my final ball.

It looks pretty this time and there was no microwave involved.

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Nutrient Dense Cinnamon Spice Ice Cream

The husband is a no-sweets kind of guy. As in, NONE. Almost ever.  He has this weird ability to resist things that make him feel bad, even if they taste good. Just strange. 😉  Today was (is!) his birthday and the rest of the family wanted SWEETS to celebrate.

So, to get HIM to eat his birthday treat with us, we went  ‘real food’.  The kids and I made ice cream from raw milk and cream and we sweetened it mostly with honey and a touch of raw sugar. To keep the sweet factor down for him, we didn’t add fruit like we usually do. We spiced it up with cinnamon and nutmeg and added a couple of pastured egg yolks to pack the nutrients in and make it more custard-like.  The recipe was adjusted and adapted from several ice cream recipes online but it is not really attributable to any one person so I’m including my adapted recipe instead of links to several others.  I would call it flan flavored ice cream, which went right along with our sprouted corn chips and salsa and fajitas.

 

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Real Food Cinnamon Spice Ice Cream (Makes about 4 cups)

1 1/2 cups raw cream (because raw cream is not legal to sell in Utah, I separate it from the raw milk -Check out my YouTube Video on my super easy method of separating cream from milk. )

1 1/2 cups raw milk

1/2 cup local raw honey

2 tbsp sucanant

1 tsp organic vanilla

2 tsp Ceylon cinnamon

1/4 tsp organic nutmeg

pinch  Real Salt (we’re used to the undissolved minerals in our food, but use plain sea salt if you prefer)

2 local pastured egg yolks

I mixed all the ingredients (except the egg yolks) together in a glass bowl earlier in the day to let the flavors settle in a bit. When I was ready to put the mix in the ice cream maker, I beat in the egg yolks and poured it in immediately. It took about 20 minutes to get to a nice soft-serve consistency and it was served with a sprinkle of cinnamon and nutmeg on top…and, of course,  a candle for the birthday boy.

What? No cake? Well, no. I gave up on trying to make  ‘acceptable’ cakes for him years ago although, one year I did whole wheat rolls in cupcake liners with real butter on top and that was a huge hit.

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