Monday, May 12, 2014

Easy foundations for nutritious meals

When I started turning my attention to real nutritious whole food my youngest was still in utero. He is now 12 years old. But as each year passes I add a bit more to my repertoire.

Our first moves were from white shop bought bread to whole wheat bread then to making our own whole wheat bread then onto buying the grains and grinding them and making our bread. It was a process of good-better-best. The goal was to always be growing and learning how to be wiser stewards of our bodies.

It can be so overwhelming when starting to switch onto whole foods and real ingredients that when we think we have to do it all at the beginning we give up before even taking one baby step.

My advice is always to just make one change and when that change for the better is part of your routine, add another and then keep going. With that in mind, one of the easiest things you can do is make these 5 easy foundational parts of most recipes and keep them in your fridge or freezer until you need them.

Meat stocks

Chicken, beef and lamb stocks can be made and frozen in Ziploc bags or plastic containers. We use loads of chicken stock so I just keep 3x 1 liter jars in the fridge all the time. We eat roast chicken once a week (I roast 2 and we have leftovers for salads, soups and sandwiches) the next day. I keep all the bones, cartilage and skin to make stock. If I debone a chicken (it’s cheaper than buying mixed portions) I also keep the carcass for stock.

I get beef and lamb bones from the organic farmer who supplies my children’s business with their products and make stock from those.

Meat stock recipes here. (Lamb and beef are done the same)

Vegetable stock 

For vegetable stock, I will save carrot peels, celery bits, onion bits and any other vegetable offcuts every now and again for vegetable stock. They can be frozen in a container until you have enough unless you are doing a big cook up then use them fresh.

Uses for your stocks:
Spaghetti and lasagna mince

Tomato and vegetable sauce
This is a much quicker but still tasty way to have tomato sauce on hand for recipes. It is much more nutritious than cans of tomatoes.

Obviously its great if you have a glut of homegrown organic tomatoes, but any tomatoes can do great things in this sauce.

2kg tomatoes quatered
2 bulbs of garlic, peeled
3 large carrots, grated
1 large bunch of celery, chopped
A selection of herbs (rosemary, thyme, oregano) 

Wash and prepare the vegetables. Add to a large pot with a drizzle of olive oil. Bring up to a boil while stirring. Reduce the temperature and let it bubble away for an hour until soft.

Add 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Blend up with a stick blender and once cooled store in jars in the fridge or freeze in containers or bags.

Uses for your tomato sauce:

Bolognaise Sauce

Bonus idea…

Have you heard about Artisan Bread in 5minutes a day? It was the rage about 3 years ago. It’s a great way to make your own bread a couple of days a week.


1 comment:

Lori Alexander said...

I make bone broths all the time! I use it in all my soups and even drink it straight with a little bit of salt. Good health is a wonderful blessing to give to our children and as our world continues to become more toxic, it is more important than ever to do what we can to stay healthy.