Tag Archives: gut repair

Rice Pudding Brekkie

Cooked and cooled rice is a source of resistant starch. Resistant starch (as the name suggests) resists digestion in the small intestine, instead acting as more of a fibre. It’s an incredible fuel source for our gut bugs to keep them thriving and healthy (super important for digestion, amazing skin, immunity and mental health).

The coconut milk is a brill source of fatty acids for nourishment and energy and the warming spices help to balance blood glucose levels. Pair this with the fibre- rich dates and the zinc-loaded pumpkin seeds and you’ve got yourself a pretty snazzy make-ahead brekkie.

I’ve added some frozen organic wild blueberries here, plus some natural organic yoghurt on top (because I made this particular batch for daddy-o to enjoy as an easy and nourishing brekkie throughout the week – and he loves a bit of good quality dairy).

By all means you can use whatever fresh or frozen berries you have available, or sub for some sliced narnies or stewed apple and/or pear. Coconut yoghurt or cashew cream would keep things dairy free and if you aren’t a fan of pumpkin seeds, sub for any other nut or seed – macas or some toasted pecans would be incredible, or even a big dollop of tahini to serve. The possibilities are endless really. Try some pumpkin purée or cubes of roast pumpkin stirred through for extra sweetness and antioxidants – yum!

Ingredients – serves 2 (make the day before to allow rice enough time to cool and turn into a resistant starch)

2/3 cup rice of choice (I’m a sucker for organic Jasmine rice)

2 cups homemade coconut milk (or sub for milk of choice; macadamia, cashew, rice etc.)

Ground cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and vanilla bean powder – all to taste (I love going nuts with cinnamon and being reserved with the other three)

6 organic dates, pitted and chopped

1/3 cup toasted pumpkin seeds (I saved the seeds from a butternut pumpkin I was roasting. I scooped out the seeds, tossed them in some cinnamon, vanilla, olive oil and Himalayan salt and roasted them in a 170 degree oven for about 20 minutes until golden and crispy)

1 cup frozen wild blueberries (or fruit of choice)

1 cup organic natural yoghurt (cows, goats, or coconut for dairy-free)

Method

Bring coconut milk, spices and dates to the boil in a saucepan and add your rice. Turn down to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the rice is soft and has absorbed most of the liquid. Turn off the heat and stir through half the seeds and berries (or fruit of choice).

Divide among two bowls (or containers) and refrigerate overnight.

In the morning, decorate with a generous dollop of yoghurt (or cashew cream or tahini if you don’t have yoghurt – if this is the case, maybe serve this brekkie with a glass of kefir or kombucha tea or sprinkle the pudding with some probiotics powder), the remaining fruit and toasted seeds. Enjoy the benefits of both pro and pre-biotics in the one meal.

Notes

Remember probiotics are our good gut bugs and pre biotics are their fuel, so it’s always best to combine the two. Other sources of probiotics include fermented veggies, kombucha tea, coconut water kefir, fermented cashew cheese, homemade sour cream. Your prebiotics are found in foods such as bananas and green banana flour, pears, apples, root veggies, onion, garlic, cruciferous veggies (think cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, Kale etc.), nuts, seeds, wholegrains and legumes. Basically fibre-rich foods are the go.

‘Hug in a bowl’ Amazeballs Stew

This stew came about because I had way too many beef marrow bones in the freezer and needed to use them up. It’s funny, in the nineteen months I spent on GAPS, I craved slow cooked meats, particularly the connective tissue from around animals bones, like nothing else on this earth. I kid you not, I would happily eat a little bowl of slimy, creamy connective tissue with a little salt for dessert, while my friends and family ate chocolate cake around me. Being the crazy kid I am, I thought that THEY were the ones missing out! Autoimmune hepatitis left my gut in such a state that once I got into into the nitty gritty of repairing my gastrointestinal epithelium (gut lining), my cravings were quirky as all hell.

These days however, my gut lining is sealed and healed and funnily enough, I have no desire to eat meat (I think perhaps my cravings got the better of me and now I’m totally “fleshed out”). My gallstone dilemma of 2016 gave me the biggest aversion to animals foods and at the moment (I’m open to change in the future) I find myself thriving on a near-exclusive plant-based diet (the occasional piece of fish makes an appearance from time to time). Animal fat in particular makes me want to heave. Oh how times change. So anyways, those marrow bones were just sitting in the freezer from when I bought them in bulk, and I was determined to still find a way to use them up … oh dearest family, hows about I cook you up a fab dinner tonight?*

This stew is comforting, sweet and oh-so nourishing. Full of medicinal spices, mineral-rich salt and seaweed, gelatine- and collagen-dense connective tissue for cell renewal and healing-induced comfort, plus gentle fibre and immune-boosting Beta-carotene from the orange veggies. It’s a great way to get goodness into those that don’t really like bone broth or any sort of offal – it’s too delicious for them to be fussy about it.

I served this with some simple steamed rice, that I cooked and cooled down in the fridge, adding some coconut oil before refrigeration. This method creates resistant starch which feeds the beneficial microflora in our guts – plus the antimicrobial coconut oil helps the rice stay super-fresh (some health authorities warn about mould accumulation on chilled rice).

You could also serve it with cauliflower mash and steamed greens for a grain-free/lower carbohydrate meal if you find that works better for your body/hormones/energy levels etc.

*I developed this recipe in December 2016 and am only just getting it up on the blog now (I figured a stew recipe should wait for cooler weather before being shared)

‘Hug-in-a-bowl” Amazeballs Stew

1 large beef marrow bone (with lots of beautiful connective tissue and a little meat still attached to the bone), chopped by the butcher into 6-8 pieces

1/4 cup coconut BBQ sauce or coconut aminos* (available at health food stores, online and even now at some supermarkets – yay)

2 teaspoons each of minced garlic and ginger

5 large carrots, washed and chopped into rough chunks

3 cups pumpkin (or sweet potato), chopped into large cubes

1 large onion (brown or red – red will be sweeter, brown will be earthier), diced

1 teaspoon quality sea salt or Himalayan crystal salt

1 Tablespoon dulse flakes**

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Black pepper to taste (maybe 30 or so grinds from the grinder)

Filtered water to cover meat and veggies

1/2 cup banana flour for thickening sauce

*If you don’t have coconut BBQ sauce or coconut aminos and tolerate soy products, an organic tamari sauce can be substituted. You may like to add in 2-4 chopped pitted dates if you take this option, as tamari is sugar-free so won’t provide the subtle sweetness of the coconut sauces

**Dulse is a seaweed. I buy mine from Changing Habits. You can replace with one nori sheet (the seaweed sheets you use to make sushi rolls) torn into small pieces

Method

Chuck bones, veggies, spices, seasonings and coconut BBQ sauce or aminos into a large electric slow cooker and add enough filtered water so that the bones and veggies are covered. Cook on high for 8-10 hours. It’s best to get this on in the morning so it’s all ready for dinner (or cook it overnight ready for the next day).

Once cooked, switch slow cooker setting to keep warm or “low”. The fat will have risen to the top during the cooking process, and it’s up to you how much is left in or taken out. I used a ladle to carefully scoop of 80% (or so) of the fatty film on top, placing it into a plastic takeaway container that I could easily throw out on bin night. If you reckon you’d use this fat for cooking, place into a glass jar and store in the fridge, using within the next three weeks (great for frying rissoles, roasting veggies, sautéing veggies etc.)

Once you’ve strained off desired amount of fat, it’s time to use tongs to remove the bones from the meal. Strip all the meat and connective tissue from the bones and scoop any bone marrow from the bone cavities – add all this delicious stuff back into the pot. Discard the bones.

Then ladle 3/4 of the broth from the stew into a large saucepan. Bring it to the boil on the stovetop and add the banana flour, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Turn heat down to a simmer and cook, stirring constantly until thick enough to coat back of spoon.

Return thickened sauce to meat, veggies and remaining broth that have been keeping warm in the slow cooker. Give everything a nice stir and then it’s all ready to serve.

Leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to a week and will be nice and gelatinous and thick, you cold even try eating it cold as a “jelly” with the cooked and cooled coconut rice – YUM!