Month: December 2015

Intentions not resolutions: how to create good habits in 2016

It’s almost 2016 (eep!) and it’s that time of the year when the best of 2015 and 2016 to do lists come rolling out. Do you make resolutions at the beginning of the year? I don’t. Controversial, I know. I prefer to set intentions. Ahem, […]

Stories I loved this week.

It’s Boxing Day! Are you out braving the sales or are you at home with friends and family eating bubble and squeak and relaxing? We’re headed to my in-laws today for more turkey and Christmas pudding and very excited toddlers running around. Then it’s a […]

I Tried It: Making Bone Broth

Bone broth preparation with ginger

2015 has been the year of bone broth or stock, as your grandmother would call it. From Brodo to #boilyourbones, the Hemsley sisters’ catchphrase, it seemed like everyone was getting into the long simmer.

Real talk: I made a half hearted attempt at making bone broth towards the end of last year, but it didn’t turn out very well, so I didn’t bother trying again until recently. Meanwhile, lots of beef bones and chicken carcasses have been thrown out, giving me a regretful, wasteful feeling.

No more. I’ve since realised bone broth is the one of the easiest things to make, especially if you have a slow cooker. Even easier if you have a pressure cooker as it only takes 2 hours.

My chicken broth recipe is really simple and you can easily substitute chicken for turkey (how seasonal!), beef or lamb bones or whack all the bones in together:

  1. Strip any excess meat off the chicken carcass and place the carcass into the slow cooker.
  2. Add 3-4 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. This helps release the collagen from the bones.
  3. Add 3-4 garlic cloves, an onion, chopped in half, 3-4 carrots and a leek, chopped in half.
  4. If you want a deeper flavour, add 3-4 circular pieces of ginger, 3 cm in diameter.
  5. Season to taste with himalayan sea salt, pepper, thyme and rosemary.
  6. Cover with water.
  7. Set your slow cooker to low, cover and leave for at least 24 hours, stirring it occasionally and topping up the water as necessary.
  8. When you’re satisfied with the taste, or the bones have crumbled, remove the broth from the heat and pour the mixture through a strainer.
  9. Store it in the refrigerator for up to 7 days and in the freezer for up to 6 months.

Bonus tip: if you don’t have enough bones to make broth, stockpile them from individual meals in a big Ziploc bag in the freezer. After a while, you should have enough to make at least 2 litres of broth.

What can you do with your freshly made bone broth?

1. Sip it. It’s great for helping to repair a leaky gut and as a nutrient source in illness, as it’s full of collagen and protein.

2. Make soup! Knowing the soup has homemade broth in it is such a rewarding feeling.

3. Risottos are even lovelier with a homemade broth.

4.  I like to add a little zing to little J’s rice by adding a little broth to it for flavour and nutrients.

What do you do with your broth?

 

How to stay healthy over the holidays.

It’s so easy to indulge over the festive period and why not? It’s such a fun time of year and there’s so much going on – parties, concerts, lunches, dinners, brunch – it’s non-stop, with many smiling faces offering glasses of champagne, mince pies, cookies […]

Stories I loved this week.

Christmas is in 5 days. Are you excited? I am. It’s been fun easing myself into the Christmas spirit with lots of kiddie Christmas parties and outings.   I still can’t believe another year is almost done. The days are long, but the years are […]

When you don’t agree with your client’s food preferences.

Death_to_stock_communicate_hands_8

Everybody has their own food preferences, likes, dislikes, intolerances and allergies. Some people are omnivores, some people are vegetarians and some are vegans. All personal choices and preferences for any number of reasons.

What do you do as a nutrition practitioner? How you put aside personal nutrition preferences when working with clients?

This is the question my colleagues and I have been wrestling with as we go further into our second year of our nutrition studies and we start to observe clients in clinic. There are quite a few vegetarians and vegans on my course who have very passionate beliefs. How they will work with clients who don’t want to give up meat, who believe that eating meat is a part of a healthy diet?

On the flip side, what about the meat eaters who work with vegetarians and vegans? There is a lot of evidence that meat has important vitamins and minerals, some of which can’t be obtained from plants. A long term vegetarian or vegan may not be interested in that information, especially  if they’ve chosen this dietary model for political, religious or ethical reasons.

So what do you do?

Right now, it seems to me that there are a number of routes.

1. Present the facts to clients in a neutral and respectful way and understand their reasons for their food choices. This will help understand  if there are any areas where your clients may or may not be flexible.

2. Explain where you’re coming from (if necessary), again, in a neutral way, sticking to the facts.

3. Use the experience to develop the tools in your practitioner’s arsenal. If you’re a vegan / vegetarian, learn how to optimise a meat eater’s diet – the right omega-3 sources, the best balance between meat and green vegetables. And on the other side, it’s equally important to understand the best ways to optimise a plant eater’s diet – the best vitamin b12 supplements, the best sources of complete plant protein and the sources of fat for this group.

4. Specialise in working with vegetarians and vegans. I’m not sure if it’s possible to only work with omnivores, but if there’s a will there’s a way.

Above all, respect is essential.

Photo by Death to Stock Photo + Mumsy

Stories I loved this week.

Photo by Maria Shanina 12 days left till Christmas! Have you done your Christmas shopping yet? I’m just finishing mine off, with only a few more to buy. Here are a few ideas if you’re stuck. What are you up to for Christmas? We’re staying in […]

Healthy Christmas gift guide.

Christmas is just around the corner! If you’re stuck for gift ideas, here are some with a healthy spin. See what I did there? 🙂 1. Class Pass is a lovely way to try out a variety of fitness classes in large cities around the world. […]

Stories I loved this week.

Beautiful farm vista

Photo by Richard Smith

A sick child for me, usually means, lots of cuddles and lots of down time. I have to accept that I’m not going to get a huge amount done and I have to slow down.

Here’s what I wrote on my Instagram:

“I don’t tend to post many photos of myself on this account, primarily because I want to focus on sharing my adventures in food, health, fitness and wellness. My little boy has been really sick today and I’ve been either holding or laying down with him all day. I’m not really one for resting as I’m always focused on the next thing I need to tick off my to do list – the next chapter to read in my textbooks, the next meal to cook, the next blog post to write, the next outing to plan, the next freelance gig, and so on. Today, I’ve been forced to stop, focus on the present and just be with my son. And I appreciate it. I’m not saying I’ll change because I have a lot on my plate right now. But it’s nice to just be in the moment. #realtalk”

Little J is finally back to his sprightly self and we’ve got an adventure filled weekend – Winter Wonderland, Christmas tree shopping and of course, trimming, visiting friends and the first of a few carol services. What are you up this weekend?

Would you join an alternative book club? I love the idea of a walking book club. (Guardian)

The health effects of loneliness. (The Atlantic)

Have you seen The Man in The High Castle yet? Great television from Amazon Studios. (Amazon)

Could you spend ten days without speaking? This writer went on a 10-day silent meditation retreat. (Summer Tomato)

Can’t wait to see Sisters. (New York Times)

Being mixed race with Afro hair texture, I totally related to this author’s reticence at cutting her long hair. I’ve done it twice in my life and cried / regretted it both times. (The Pool)

We’re also in the middle of potty training (what a fun week, right?!) and I stumbled upon this very funny and true list of thoughts all parents have whilst potty training. (Buzzfeed)