So much snow for a small community, so much to be overwhelmed with by Mother Nature, inches gracefully drifting from the sky, adding up to feet of fluffy coldness.
Shutting down traffic, closing schools, and giving us all a chance to stay home and cook instead of being overwhelmed, but with grass-fed Beef Stew in the crockpot all feels right.
Almost like the feeling I got when I realized my family needed to be gluten free. All four of us had had symptoms for so long, but it was so easy to explain them away.
We can’t now. We’ve been gluten-free for a month and we all are feeling so much better.
No farting in the mornings, no foggy heads, unable to put together comprehensive thoughts beyond 8pm.
No dark under eye circles on any of us. Terrific.
So the girls (fraternal twin almost 7 year olds) got the week off from school and were horribly disappointed!
They had to spend their time with games, sledding, reading and baking Gluten-Free snacks with Mom and Dad.
I can relate, I always enjoyed school so much. Maybe that is part of why I went back to school as an adult and became a naturopathic physician. It’s part of the story, but there is a much greater story there too.
Like how I managed to meet a terrific guy, catering in NYC and discovering that he too wanted to go to school. Acupuncture for him, he is one of the best to break through long standing patterns of illness. He is gluten intolerant too.
Discovered it when he broke his femur ice skating with the girls. Nobody with a strong skeleton breaks a femur.
You need tremendous force typically. It is the long bone at the top of your leg. It takes so much pressure and stresses in the course of a day that it is one of the strongest bones in the body. But his broke, and we discovered osteoporosis was the cause. Yes, he is tall and has always been slim, but that wasn’t enough to explain this.
So the research began, what would cause a healthy 40 something man to have osteoporosis?
It all came together at Celiac disease. His anemia, slimness, dark circles, gastro-intestinal complaints, everything.
Now we all are gluten-free. The girls had been wheat free since first food introduction at 9 months anyway. We had slacked off a bit with the starting of school and didn’t really see too many changes. Maybe they had outgrown it? When Kate was always cold and very pale, we realized that wasn’t the case. Just a bit of iron added to her gluten-free diet made all the difference.
As for Fiona, she presented with symptoms of gluten intolerance in the emotional end of the spectrum. She would get hyper and start bouncing off the walls with enough wheat. As a baby she had a bleeding rash as her main symptom but that went away around 4 ish. We have always watched the wheat intake, choosing spelt bread or kamut crackers. Now it is the rice crackers or nut thins or any of the myriad GF crackers I can find.
I am so grateful for the GF foods available. But I have one quandry. I’ve fed my family organically grown food for years since I learned just how bad conventionally raised food is for both the environment and for our bodies. So much of my training involved following the trail of environmental toxins to their entry into our bodies that I just made our diets as clean as I could.
But I can’t seem to find the items I need now for our gluten-gfee organic lifestyle.
Thanks to Trader Joe’s, I have brown rice pasta. And to Nature’s Path for cereals and granola like bars for the girls lunch boxes.
But where do I get organic brown rice flour that isn’t cross contaminated? Where are the GF organic crackers? Breads? I know I am asking a lot but corn is one of the highest GMO foods out there. I don’t want Genetically Modified Organisms in my family!
I want whole grains, preferably locally grown options.
I know I am asking a lot but maybe you all can help? I want this to be a discussion. A place we all can find our way. Want to help?
So many things have changed since I wrote this post, new products, new companies, new bloggers. Together we are creating the foods our bodies crave.
|Snow Day Beef Stew|
- Recipe: Grass Fed Gluten-Free Beef Stew
- 3 pounds of beef cubes for stew
- 3 tablespoons of rice flour
- 1/2 teaspoon of lemon pepper blend
- 4 tablespoons of oil
- 6 carrots- peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
- 3 parsnips-peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
- 4 stalks of celery- cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1 large onion- cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1 tablespoon cumin powder
- 1 tablespoon basil
- Beef Broth, water or red wine
- 5 red potatoes- scrubbed but not peeled and diced into quarters
- In a plastic bag, combine flour and pepper blend.
- Add the beef cubes and shake well.
- Heat the oil in a heavy stock pot till shimmery.
- Add the meat and allow to cook till well browned on one side before turning.
- Continue cooking till all sides are well browned.
- Add the vegetables and the spices.
- Cover the mixture just barely with beef broth, water, red wine or a combination of all three.
- Cover and simmer for 15 minutes and add the potatoes. These will cook quickly but I wanted them to retain thier shape. Simmer 1/2 hour more or so till the potatoes are tender and the gravy has thickened.
Feel free to change the veggies. I just used what I had in the fridge but I love to add corn or celery root or turnips or rutabagas to stew too.
Any cold storage veggies work well.
This is even better the next day so feel free to double it and make a whole lot.
Makes a wonderful lunch too.