Food Quotes


"No therapy or drug known to modern medical science can rebuild tissue that has been damaged by disease or trauma. Food alone can accomplish this feat. It is for this reason that nutrition is an indispensable weapon against disease".
Dr. Bernard Jensen (1908-2001)




Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Icing on the Cake - Quite a Lot of Pain and Suffering

Recently I acquired a cookbook that is over 130 years old. Dated 1879, Housekeeping in Old Virginia, sounds like it would cover all of what it means to be domestic, but is really just a cookbook.

The recipes are so interesting since processed food was in its early stages at that time. Sugar was available as was white flour and canned vegetables. But other than that, food was really what it had been since creation. Milk was not even being pasteurized yet. That didn't happen until the early 1900s.

Anyway, since I am bringing a dessert to Bible study tonight, the thought came to me to look at what sweets were like back then. My eye landed on a recipe for icing. After reading it I realized that sweets were probably served very rarely. See if you don't agree:

Icing
1 1/2 pounds of sugar
1/2 pint water
Boil until it ropes. Have ready the whites of seven eggs well beaten, pour the syrup into a bowl, and beat until milk warm. Then pour in the eggs, and beat for an hour.

That's it! Simple, right? I find this so interesting. The sugar and water must be boiled until the mixture "ropes". The only time I've ever done this is when I've made candy (that's a thing of the past), and it takes quite a lot of time and stirring over a hot stove.

Then you beat this mixture, boiling hot off the stove, until it is "milk warm". That term "milk warm" has to refer to the temperature of milk, fresh from the cow, when the milk is still the body temperature of the cow. So to beat it for that long must have been exhausting. 

But the real "icing on the cake" is the last step in this recipe..."beat for an hour"! Whoa!!! Now you well know that the homemaker of 1879 did not have an electric mixer. This was done with the old rotary beater at best or with another utensil of equal labor intensity. What a lot of pain and suffering just to have something sweet to eat! 

My guess is that the homemaker, if she were like me, hardly ever served iced cake. But then, another woman may have had a fixation with physical exercise, in which case she may have served cake with icing several times a week for slim and trim arms. And then, of course, the more cake she ate, the more she would want to exercise again by beating the icing for an eternity to burn off the fat that was accumulating around her middle from eating what she made during her exercise. All of it really would have been an exercise in futility.

As for me, had I wanted to exercise back then, I would have gone outside to the garden, grabbed a shovel or hoe and some sunshine and been happy (and sore) with that, like I am now.

But there is a bit of culinary wisdom that we can borrow from this recipe. Currently sweets are so easy to get hold of and, in fact, there is hardly a processed food that does not contain moderate to large amounts of sugars. And then in nearly every one of those processed foods, one of the sugars used is high fructose corn syrup, the most damaging form of sugar.

Nowadays our pain and suffering are not in preparing sweet treats, but in eating them so frequently (everyday, all day long). Sugar's effect is killing us. Keeping in mind the huge numbers of people who develop Diabetes 2, as well as many other degenerative diseases as a result of eating sugar-saturated foods, it is wise to really limit our sugar intake. Here are some ways to do that:

1. Do not eat store-bought sweets. Rather, commit to making your own at home from the best ingredients possible.
2. Buy the best forms of unrefined sugar available - granulated palm sugar, organic maple syrup, Rapadura, black strap molasses, stevia. These are expensive but this is an advantage. If you are on a budget, you will not make sweets often because you simply won't be able to afford it.
3. This suggestion is only for those of you who are really serious about cutting way down on sugar. Find and use labor intensive recipes for sweets, like the one above. Of course, with the homemaker's modern conveniences, the labor will be cut down dramatically.
4. Instead of a sweet treat, eat a salty treat like buttered popcorn, popped in coconut oil. Or try a very lightly sweet treat like peanut butter mixed with a little raw honey and coconut oil, then spread on celery.

Do you have any old dessert recipes that feature labor intensive methods? How do you discipline yourself to limit your intake of sweets?

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Friday, September 17, 2010

Inside-Out Ravioli

Here's a recipe for an old family favorite - Inside-Out Ravioli. A few people have eaten this dish recently and are waiting for me to post the recipe. So here it is:

Inside-Out Ravioli

1 pound ground beef (from grass-fed and finished cattle is best), or Italian sausage (turkey or pork - from pasture-raised animals is best)
1/2 cup onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
10 ounces of frozen, chopped organic or pesticide free spinach
32-ounce jar organic spaghetti sauce
1 (6-ounce) can organic tomato pasta
1/2 teaspoon salt (Redmond Real salt is a good choice)
Dash of pepper
7 ounces penne, ziti or shell macaroni, cooked and drained (brown rice pasta is a good choice)
9 ounces shredded cheese - mozzarella or jack (from cows not given rBSt)
3 well-beaten eggs (from pasture-raised chickens)
1/4 cup extra-virgin, cold-pressed olive oil
1 cup soft breadcrumbs
1 cup shredded cheese - mozzarella or jack (from cows not given rBSt)

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brown meat, onion and garlic in a large skillet. Cook spinach according to package directions. Drain, reserving liquid. Add water to make 1 cup. Add spinach/water-liquid (do not add spinach), spaghetti sauce, tomato paste, salt and pepper to meat mixture.Simmer 10 minutes. Combine spinach, pasta, cheese, eggs, olive oil and bread crumbs. Spread pasta mixture in an oiled 13"x9" baking dish. Top with meat sauce.
Sprinkle remaining cup of cheese over top. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 8-10.
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Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Righteous - Good Stewards of God's Good Gifts

Just the other day when I was reading my Bible, I came upon this verse. "Whoever is righteous has regard for the life of his beast, but even the mercy of the wicked is cruel" (Proverbs 12:10a). Animal husbandry (being a good steward of God's good gifts), originated in the Bible. God created the beasts of the earth and He cares for them as evidenced by the following verses:

Your righteousness is like the mountains; Your judgments are like a great deep. O Lord, You preserve man and beast (Psalms 36:6).

Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; make music to our God on the harp. He covers the sky with clouds; he supplies the earth with rain and makes grass grow on the hills. He provides food for the cattle and for the young ravens when they call (Psalms 147:7-9).
These verses refer to animals that serve man by providing brute strength (donkeys as beasts of burden, draft horses or oxen that plow or pull wagons, etc.) or animals that provide food for man's sustenance - chickens, goats, rabbits, cows, cattle, turkeys, and so on. 

The first verse says that a righteous man has regard for his beast. The next verse acclaims God as being righteous. Here we see that man in God's image (when man has God's righteousness), he will have God's desires also. He will have compassion on dumb animals (this is an old phrase used to describe the cognizance - or lack of it - of the animals of the earth). The last verse tells us how God cares for the beasts of the earth - by feeding them when they're hungry.

Since I've become aware of the way factory farms operate, I simply refuse to take part in the cruelty that is inflicted upon these servants of man - "...even the mercy of the wicked is cruel". How can we be thankful that God has provided food and service to us through the beasts He created? One way is by being a good steward of this gift to us.

Watch the video below. And even though the changes that are suggested do not directly address this issue, those changes not only benefit our own health, and the welfare of the farm (earth) as well as the farmer, they also greatly improve animal welfare and health. See for yourself:

Once you've viewed the video, go here to sign a petition (very easy) for safer food.


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Please include the following statement on any distributed copy written by Sharon Kaufman: By Sharon Kaufman. © Franziska's Pantry. Website: franziskaspantry.blogspot.com

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