Sunday, December 30, 2012

My Basic Soup Recipe For Every Veggie Under The Sun and Soil!

Cauliflower (purple or otherwise!) is an excellent base for this soup, but I make essentially this recipe with carrots, courgette/zucchini, squash and pumpkin, broccoli, turnips, etc etc etc.

This recipe can be stripped down to the basics for GAPS Intro by omitting spices you haven't tested yet as well as the coconut milk or cream.

  • 1 tablespoon oil of your choice (I love using beef tallow skimmed from the top of my bone broth.
  • 1-2 large chopped onions
  • 2-3 cloves garlic or to taste 
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder- not for intro
  •  1/2+ teaspoon salt to taste
  • Pinch+ cayenne- not for intro
  •  2 pounds cauliflower or other delicious veggie, trimmed and chopped
  • broth- enough to cover veggies completely, but not overly 
  • 1 can coconut cream or milk- not for intro, sometimes I add 2 cans if I have a lot of veggies
  • optional to enhance veggies and based on where you are in the diet- black pepper, oregano, turmeric(great with curries), garam masala (also great for curries)
In a large stock pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds before adding the curry powder, salt, and cayenne. Stir, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the cauliflower, reduce to medium heat, and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the veggies are very tender, about 30 minutes or more.

Remove from the heat. Puree the soup. Return to medium heat and stir in the coconut milk if making a curry. Simmer for 3 minutes. Adjust the seasoning, to taste.

This basic recipe freezes very well with the coconut or not. Add your slightly precooked grass fed meats, and you have the closest thing to a meal on the go that you get on GAPS during the intro or any other phase!

I made this the other night with white turnips and oven-roasted fennel, and it was one of the most delicious soups i have ever ever eaten!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Butternut Squash Pumpkin Apple Black Pepper Soup

A delicious, warm spicy soup with a bit of sweetness that will still heal and seal your gut!


  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil, coconut oil, or butter depending on food restrictions and preferences
  • 1 large butternut squash
  • 2-3 tart green apples, chopped 
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 5-6 cups bone broth (I went with beef, but chicken would work fine, or even veggie) Only use enough to just cover the fruit and veggies in the pot for a richer creamier soup.
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp or more cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2-1 Tbspn black pepper
  • salt to taste (smoked salt is particularly wonderful in this recipe)


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut butternut squash into quarters. Scrape out seeds and pulp, coat in roughly half of the oil, and roast for about 20 minutes while preparing the rest of the recipe.
  2. Set a large cook pot or dutch oven over medium heat and heat the remaining oil for 1-2 minutes. Do not brown it. Sauté the onion in he oil for about 5 minutes.
  3. Peel (you can use a potato peeler) the squash once roasted and cooled. Then dice. The smaller you cut up your in ingredients, the faster they'll cook.
  4. Add squash, apple, pumpkin, and broth to the pot. Bring to a rollicking boil. 
  5. Add spices and stir well.
  6. Cover and simmer and for 30-60 minutes or until squash and apples soften.
  7. Puree thoroughly once everything is soft.
  8. Add salt and spices to taste, and garnish with chives or parsley.
Enjoy for a few days and/or freeze for later. This soup should be nice and thick, almost creamy.

Pumpkin Banana Mini Muffins (GrainFree GF GAPS SCD)

 In search of a little treat, I cruised my pinterest boards for food inspiration, and came up with this recipe after drooling over the Pale Parents' Banana Pumpkin Pucks!

 I didn't have any coconut flour, but I did have some leftover almond pulp still in the freezer from our nut-milk making party a while back. You'll have to play around yourself as almond flours and meals vary greatly. In hindsight, I might add an egg yolk or two next time I make this for a more bread-like result. In the end, you may have something pretty gooey and a little fragile, but the taste is fantastic!

  • 1 C pumpkin puree 
  • 2  medium-large ripe bananas  
  • 10 large soaked dates (add more to be even more dessert-like)
  • 1/4 C applesauce
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 C coconut oil, liquified 
  • 1 C almond pulp, flour, or meal- use more if the results aren't doughy and fluffy enough
  • 1/4-1/3 cup coconut shreds (very fine unsweetened)
  • 1-2 Tbsp cinnamon 
  • 1 tsp nutmeg 
  • 1/2 tsp salt 

Combine pumpkin, bananas, dates, applesauce, vanilla and liquid coconut oil In a food processor and blend until very smooth- could be a few minutes.

Next, add dry ingredients to food processor and pulse until well-blended and doughy. Add more flour and/or coconut shreds if too sticky.

Fill lined mini muffin cups or greased muffin tin. (I made them in mini tins because I don't think it would cook through in a larger muffin tin.)

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minute. They'll have some browned edges and bounce back slightly to the touch.

Cool on a rack, enjoy for a couple of days and freeze for later as well.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Diary of a misfit- A Documentary that Matters!

Diary of a Misfit: The Roy Hudgins Documentary Project is a film by local Portlandians Casey Parks and Aubree Bernier-Clarke. They've been traveling to and shooting in rural Louisiana for the past three years. They are getting close to finishing the film, and they recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to try to pay for our last couple of shooting trips and record a score for the movie.
This is a film about Roy Hudgins, an enigmatic figure who lived in Delhi, Louisiana, from the 1920s until the early 2000s. People in town have different stories about Roy: Roy was kidnapped, was left in a shoebox on the church steps, was a "morphodite." Roy was an outcast, a musician, a good Christian and a yard mower. Roy passed away in 2006, leaving behind no living relatives (that we are aware of), and relatively no paper trail. We've spent three years making in-roads in Roy's community, following leads and tracking down what records do exist. At this point we've discovered a lot about Roy and the town of Delhi, but we have more questions than answers about the facts of Roy's life. Raising the money to spend more time in rural Louisiana will help us close that gap. As much a commentary on our entire culture in the United States as a biography of both a fascinating individual and a town, I feel like this is a story that really matters. As our society changes and grows, as bigots age and die off, we must learn about and honor the pioneers of change, even if their great revolution was just to live their lives as truly as humanly possible wherever they were. I'm fascinated and by this story in the tidbits it currently exists as. Please consider joining me in supporting these filmmakers to make it as whole as possible.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Pickle Party! (Fermenting!)

 I started the GAPS diet, kind of, loosely, earlier this year in a quest to heal my gut and reverse my food allergies. It's going pretty well, but things have gotten better since a friend of mine started the diet, too. We had a veggie fermenting party on Saturday! Lacto-fermented foods provide the most healing, beneficial probiotic you could possibly treat your saddened/inflamed gut with.

Two other friends thought this sounded great, so they came over as well, and the four of us proceeded to make sour pickles, rainbow kimchi, two types of sauerkraut, and kombucha!

Here are our favorite recipes and resources from around the web:

OF COURSE, just start with anything by Sandor Elix Katz:

The kimchi we made, which tasted amazing even as a spicy salad, is from his book by the same name as the site. here is a great take on that recipe that is very close to what my pals did:

My personal favorite source for simple recipes is Herban Gardener, and her pickle recipe is perfect! (The grape or other leaves are key though)

We discussed so many things- the various ways to weigh the food down below the brine, to create a gasket that lets your veggies breath without getting nasty, how many days to go, etc.

If you have a gut issue, then I highly recommend you start adding some fermented foods to your diet! Start with just a teaspoon of fermented pickle or saurkraut juice in some broth per day. I have had incredibly noticeable results, and mostly within minutes of eating it. If you can't find the time to ferment some veggies yourself, then go by any of the brine-based pickled foods from Bubbies!

Don't bother at all with anything on the dry shelf that has been heat processed or made with vinegar or any preservatives. You want to see the cloudy brine--proof that the pickles are naturally fermented.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

End of Summer- Oven Candied Tomatoes!

I get the most beautiful, small deliveries of produce once a week from a CSA here in Portland called Slowhand Farm. And, the tomatoes and peppers have been fantastic this year- juicy, sweet, and full of flavor. But, with me doing the GAPS diet intro (more on that maybe later), I haven't had a chance to just snack on them as I please. So, a need for delicious preservation led me to Lynne Rossetto Kasper's OVEN CANDIED TOMATOES!!! (Her website isn't that great for recipe layout, be warned.) The recipe, which uses no sugar but what comes from the tomatoes themselves is fantastic, and in the end you have two delicious condiments that can be frozen for at least 3 months--perfect for having a taste of late summer in the middle of winter!

Here's how I did it:

  • Tomatoes on hand- halved if small, quartered if larger- all the pieces are about the size of half a cherry tomato (this worked great with the cherry tomatoes!)
  • Olive Oil- just enough to barely coat the bottom of the pan and brush on cut sides of tomatoes
  • Salt- the fancier the better! My pal Jen got me a sampler of finishing salts from a wonderful place called The Meadow
  • OPTIONAL VARIATIONS- pinch of red pepper flakes, sprig of rosemary, thyme, and/or add any banana, bell, or hatch peppers you may have, also chopped up.


Preheat oven to 400 degrees
.In a half sheet pan, or two 2-1/2 quart shallow metal baking pans (not glass or enameled metal), arrange tomato wedges (and peppers) cut side up, about 1/2 to 1-inch apart. Brush tomatoes with oil — there should be enough to lightly film the bottom of the pan as well. Sprinkle with salt and any other seasonings.

Bake 30 minutes at 400
then lower heat to 350 degrees and bake another 30 minutes.
Turn heat to 300 degrees, and bake 30 more minutes, or until edges are slightly darkened.
If edges are not yet colored, turn heat down to 250 and bake another 10 to 15 minutes.
Remove tomatoes from the oven. Cool 20 minutes.
Transfer them to a shallow glass or china dish and pour their oil over them.
Let mellow, uncovered, at room temperature for an hour or so. (Lynn says 4 to 6 hours, but c'mon! I made these at night, so the every 30 minutes crap already ate up my night- also they turned out great!)

Layer in a storage container (I used a wide mouth mason jar with plastic lid), pouring in their oil, and refrigerate. To serve, drain off all oil from tomatoes and offer at room temperature. Taste for seasoning. Freeze tomatoes in their oil in sealed containers up to 3 months.

Thank you Splendid Table! And, Thank you even more for the delicious veggies Slowhand Farm!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

New Project For Me!

I am doing a little producing again, and launching a Kickstarter project for my friend's directorial debut as well as the album premiere of the band we're working with. I met Tony and Stef several years ago when I helped produce a video about a cat in a hot tub! (It turns out that I'd actually met Tony while we both worked on Coraline as well.) They have a studio called Belly & Bones, and I love their work almost as much as their wonderful personalities! I'm honored to help these guys produce Tony's directorial debut, which Stef will art direct. It will be mostly animated, with an amazing puppet these guys have already developed for this dark and lovely song about destroying the past and guiltily building a future.

And, to make matters even more awesome, the work we'll be doing is with and for a really great Portland band called Scrimshander! Andy and Peter make up the band, and they are also very delightful people who make great work. (They are the duo behind former band Bark, Hide and Horn.) I'm thrilled to be working with them. When they said they'd be producing their debut album, on vinyl no less, I thought it would be awesome for all of us to pool resources and make this Kickstarter campaign together for both the video and album.

If you pledge to the project, we'll reward you with great music, art, and a host of funny updates and surprises, as well as our undying gratitude and affection!

But the awesomest way you can help is to help get the word out! Tell your friends.Tell fans of music and traditional animation. Word of mouth is the best way for us to get funded, and sharing this project makes a difference that I appreciate immensely!

Here's some links:
Belly & Bones:

Thursday, August 9, 2012


 In honor of my wonderful friend's birthday as well as the wonderful crop of seasonal peaches this year, I went on a peach spree this past week/end!

Montea is no fool when it comes to good fruit, and peaches are probably her favorite of all time!

But, she is also eating about the same as I am- grain-free, refined sugar-free, hippie and clean. So, some special birthday treats would take some doing.

First, I decided to give this delightful recipe for homemade frozen yogurt a try: Neo-Homesteading: Peach & Sour Cream Frozen Yogurt

The flavor is just ridiculously awesome! The sour mixes so well with the peach, honey and cardamom. Making it without an ice cream maker was a lot of work and still yielded a pretty funky texture that works better in an ice-pops mold for sure. It froze more like paletas than frozen yogurt. Also, I added more peaches and would consider just making it with greek yogurt as it's so similar to sour cream anyway.

Next, it was time to make this flavor happen in freezer jam form! I wasn't completely satisfied with any one recipe on the internet, so here's how it went down:

Peach Cardamom Honey Sweetened Freezer Jam (Pectin Free)
  • 3+ cups of fresh peaches
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • 2 Tablespoons tapioca flour
  • Mash up the peaches with a food processor, mixer or by hand. You could cut a little bit of one peach into chunks for that chunky whole fruit look also.
  • Bring the fruit to a simmer in a saucepan, allowing it to cook down. As it becomes more liquid, whisk the tapioca starch into the fruit vigorously until it completely dissolves. Add 1 TBLSPN of the lemon, the zest, cardamom and all the honey. Stir well to combine. Continue to simmer the mixture for about 15-25 min; stirring every once in awhile to keep in from burning.
  • Once the jam is hot enough, thick enough, and sticky enough, remove from heat. Stir in the lemon juice and let cool. 
  • If the jam is too thick for your liking, just add a little more water or lemon juice to the mixture.Taste it hot to see what you think of the flavor, and add more of whatever you like!
I'm going to experiment with this for plum freezer jam as well, as I think the cardamom and honey would be delicious, complimentary flavors.

 We also made this amazing grain-free, egg-free brownie as a cake- IT IS SO GOOD!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Low(ish) Carb GF Blackberry Almond Meal Cobbler

I actually made this with some teeny fuji apples and last years frozen blackberries, so choose your fruit and enjoy! Would make a delightful apple crisp as well!

Blackberry Cobbler

2 1/4 cups almond meal/flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg or other favorite seasoning
½ cup coconut oil
¼ cup honey or agave OR stevia to taste (reduce almond meal by 1/4 cup if using stevia)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Fruit of your choice, at least a few cups of it (I just used what we had, about 5 cups of fruit)

In a bowl, combine almond flour, salt, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and any other spices.  In another bowl, whisk together oil, sweetener and vanilla.  Stir wet ingredients into dry.  Place fruit in a baking dish and toss with 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Crumble/spread topping over the fruit (it will be kind of gooey.) Cover and bake at 350° for 50 minutes to one hour.  Remove cover and bake 10 more minutes to brown crispy.  Allow time to cool a bit and firm up, serve warm or cold, both good!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Split Pea (and ham) Soup

I just love split pea soup, and with the bone of our holiday ham sitting in the freezer just waiting, it was time to make a nice big pot today! here's the recipe, adapted from a handful of other ones on the internet. Ultimately, though, the trick to the rich flavor is a couple of spritzes of a good balsamic vinegar right before serving.
Phase 1 ingredients

  • 1 leftover ham bone (optional, but makes the broth awesome)
  • 2 cups dried green split peas
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
 Phase 2 ingredients
  • 1-2 cups chopped fully cooked leftover ham
  • 4 pieces bacon (I use low sodium no sugar hippie bacon)  
  • 2.5 cups chopped carrots
  • 1.5 cup chopped celery
  • 1-2 large chopped red onions
  • 1 large potato- peeled and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper 
Final ingredient
  • spray or two of balsamic vinegar (right before serving)
Phase 1:
Bring the peas, water, ham bone, and oil to a boil in a large dutch oven or soup pot. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 3+ hours, stirring occasionally. Remove ham bone after this time. If you have an immersion blender, then blend the split peas to a smooth mixture. (This is just a texture I like, and so not necessary to flavor.)
Phase 2:
Add the next eight ingredients; cover and simmer for 1 hour or until vegetables are tender. Spray the balsamic vinegar on before serving.