Wednesday, September 7, 2011

sugar, broth and grains

I haven't updated much lately. I've felt busier. Last week was really busy but also, I am actually trying to get to bed on time so I hadn't been on my home computer all last week. Adam is starting to build some support bases for the kitchen counter that he'll be putting in soon. We're using our marble tile that has been placed on it. Adam isn't sold on the idea, but it's what we have (free). I don't mind the look at all. I think it matches the cabinets nicely.

I started organizing some of my cabinets. I put all my various grains in jars and made labels for the lids. I have to find a shelf for this cabinet so I can safely stack them two high. I still have all my beans to load back in there, once I put them in jars as well. Well, some types of beans, I will have to store in the pantry in some other, bigger conatiners because we use more of them, we keep a lot of them around.

Another thing I've been up to, is making chicken stock. I've been making my own for a few years now. It's super simple and I know what's in it. I collect bones in a baggie in the freezer until I have enough for a batch. Once I do, I thaw them out. Once they're thawed, I throw them into my crockpot. My crockpot is fairly large and will hold about 2 birds worth of bones. I cut up a binch of celery and carrots and throw them in. Add a bay leaf and some parsley usually. I didn't add those this time because I forgot. Also, about 2 tbsp of vinegar to help leech all the calcium from the bones into the broth. This past week, I've made three batches, which comes out to about 2.5 gallons? of broth. I seperate them into approximate meal sized portions and freeze them.

Broth is really healthy and nutirious for you. The gelatin from the bones and ligaments is super good for you so I try to use broth regularly. I'll make gravy with it, instead of that bullion stuff. I add some to spaghetti sauce (on the rare occassion we have some), I add it to dishes that call to be thinned down with milk, in place of the milk. I cook grains and beans in it. Off the top of my head, that's all I can think of.

I added something new this time though. I found these chicken feet at the Asian market. Chicken feet have an overabundance of gelatin in them. I cut the ends of the toes off so their claws wouldn't fall off into the broth. These actually came skinned so I didnt have to deal with that part. Seems rather time consuming so I was glad for that. Adam saw these feet in the freezer and asked "What are those doing in the freezer?!" I had to laugh. Then, when he saw me plunk them onto the cutting board, he told me, "I wish I worked for NCR so I didn't have to be home in the evenings to watch you do some of these things." I had to laugh again. They were a little fun to play with. I fed the feet to the dogs once they were done in the broth...after I extracted all the little bones out, that is. They LOVED them! Really good for their joints too.

So, onto the sugar front. I gave up sugar and white flour 9 days ago. I was quite cranky there for a few days. I am still not quite over the sugar cravings but it's not eating at me the way it was. We had friends over on Monday for a bbq and they brought sides. There were two kinds of cookies and cheesecake. I made fried apples for everyone else but then made a dish of apples and onions for me (and to share) since there is no sugar in apples and onions but plenty in fried apples. My apples and onions disappeared so quickly! I was lucky to get any. I had plenty to eat but while we were playing games, everyone was snacking on the cookies and I resisted. Adam kept some for himself and Ann took the rest home with her when she left. There are still some in his drawer which I am no longer allowed to open for anything (my own rule) because that's where he's keeping the desserts. But, even with the occassional craving, I feel pretty good. My energy is finally coming back. Most of my energy (since I only got about 5 hours of sleep a night) was coming from the sugar I was shoveling into myself and now that I can't rely on that, I am having to make better sleeping habits so I can feel rested and get my energy back. I was really revved up for a bike ride yesterday for the first time since I gave up sugar but it was raining so I didn't get a chance. I won't get a chance today either, or tomorrow since I have too much going on but just knowing that that energy is there, makes me really happy.


Andrea said...

Very educational. I like the part about adding vinegar and the chicken feet. chicken feet in a bowl/basket would be a fun thing to put on a porch halloween night..ha...I bet it would get the kids' attention. I just read that during pioneer days, people worked hard on their farms and needed the sugars and starches that they ate. So I just need to find some manual labor to do! just kidding. But you do bike so you might need some. love,andrea

Tiff :o) said...

Haha...yes, you would totally freak kids out with chicken feet in a bowl.

We do need sugars but there are plenty of natural sugars in most foods and the body converts a lot of foods into useable sugars regardless of wether you're eating processed sugar or not. And we don't need starches but we do need carbs. Carbs are plentiful in fruits and veggies. The Atkins diet is a low carb diet and as a result strictly limits your food intake to meat, greens and only a few other veggies you're not even allowed fruit.

I ate a completely raw diet for 4 months and tracked my food for calories, fat, sugar, carbs and rarely had a problem meeting any if the recommended numbers except for the fat on some days...but on the days I ate nuts or avocado, I even reached that number.

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