Weird Wednesday: In A Stew

Today I’m going to share another yummy coconut recipe with you!

Ever since I first got my copy of “Nourishing Traditions” by Sally Fallon and Dr. Mary Enig last year, I have been reading and learning and trying all kinds of ‘new’ recipes based on traditional methods of food preparation. The book by the same authors, “Eat Fat, Lose Fat” that I mentioned in a previous Weird Wednesday post is a perfect companion book and has once again inspired me to new yummy and nourishing food adventures.

Both books contain basic Chicken broth recipes as a base for many of their dishes and an important part of a nourishing diet.

“Properly prepared, meat stocks are extremely nutritious, containing the minerals of bone, cartilage, marrow, and vegetables in a form that is easy to assimilate. Acidic wine or vinegar added during cooking helps to draw minerals, particularly calcium, magnesium, and potassium, out of the bone and into the broth.” – Eat Fat, Lose Fat

In addition, homemade broths add phenomenal flavor and depth to whatever you make with them – something the the industry tries to achieve the quick way by adding MSG to everything.

I never bake chicken now without turning around and throwing the bones into a pot and making broth out of them. It’s a simple, mindless task that fills the house with a mouth watering scent while I go on about my other chores. There is also the satisfaction that I am getting every ounce of goodness out of that rather pricey pastured-raised poultry!

If you want to learn more [than you ever knew there was to know] about broth, and find a good chicken broth recipe to get you started, you can visit this page at the Weston Price Website. Meanwhile, I’m gonna assume we have the basics down and explain the above picture with a recipe from “Eat Fat, Lose Fat”.

Easy Coconut Chicken Soup
a little something different for lunch
1 can whole coconut milk
3 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup brown rice
1/4 tsp. crushed red chiles
1-inch piece ginger, peeled and chopped (I grated mine)
1 tsp. salt or 1 Tbsp. Thai fish sauce
1 tsp. Sucanat or sugar
Juice of 1 lemon or 2 limes
1 Tbsp fresh basil leaves
1 cup chopped cooked chicken meat
Place all ingredients except chicken in a medium pot over high heat. bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer about 1 1/2 hours, or until rice is thoroughly cooked. Add the chicken about 15 min. before serving.

I have to say, this soup, with its slight sweetness and unfamiliar flavor combos was a unique experience for me – but I loved it! It was delicious! Claire and I gobbled it up (as only Claire and I can gobble soup). My boys, on the other hand, did not request it again. They’re real picky about their soups, and this one was a little on the ‘brothy’ side for them.

A few of the ingredients may be unfamiliar to you, so let me explain what they are and where I got them.

Coconut milk: is a rich, creamy liquid that drips out of coconut meat when it has been pulverized in water and squeezed. Slightly thicker than cow’s milk, it has a delicious, satisfying, slightly sweet taste. Use only whole coconut milk, which contains the oil, not “lite,” in smoothies, cream sauces, curries, desserts, and soups. I got mine at Wegmans – it’s widely available in supermarkets and health food stores – look for it in the ethnic food section.

Fish Sauce: provides the essential savory flavor in traditional Thai cuisine. It’s made from pressing salted anchovies. Honestly, it took me a while to even get up the nerve to bring a bottle home (again, I found it at my local supermarket) – the name, the smell (a bit fishy), the whole idea of it. But it’s true what the label says – “It’s complex, rich flavor blends smoothly with the sweet tangy and spicy flavors of Thai dishes.” It’s like the secret ingredient to authentic flavor in a lot of Asian dishes.

Well, I think that’s enough weird for me for one Wednesday!

By the way, if you want to do more research, I highly recommend exploring the Weston Price Foundation Website. I could go on and on about why I have made the choices I have in my kitchen, but I am not a doctor, or a chemist, or a scientist. I do not have a college degree in anything, let alone medicine. My decisions have been based on lots of reading, discussions with people wiser than myself, and just plain common sense. It just makes sense to me that foods in their most natural states (closest to the form God created them in) are going to be healthier and more nourishing than the mass-produced, highly processed stuff the industry is trying to pump into us at every turn.

My goal in these posts is not to debate but to inspire you to make informed decisions about your own diet. An excellent article detailing the history and science of Fats is “The Oiling of America”. I’d encourage you to check it out if you have questions about stuff I have posted in the past.

8 responses to “Weird Wednesday: In A Stew”

  1. Holly Avatar

    I get broth, stock, soup and stew mixed up. This may be a basic question: After you pick out the meat, then strain the liquid, what do you do? Put them back together again to make soup? When do you add the vegetables? I’ve struggled with following the GAPS diet for years. I got through the intro and then basically gave up.

  2. […] Coconut Chicken Soup (using chicken left from last night’s dinner), Soaked Cornbread, applesauce […]

  3. mira Avatar

    yum. cannot wait to get my hands on that book again!

  4. Natalie_S Avatar

    That's “curry powder,” but the way I spice my soups it is pretty curry powerful 🙂

  5. Natalie_S Avatar

    Traci, I'd say unless you're going to use it within a week you should freeze it. I use the same recipe as Trina (well, I use Sally Fallon's) and had a batch go viral on me after sitting in the fridge too long. I usually get a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store (mostly Whole Foods), use the meat in salads, stews, and soups, and then make stock with the rest. In my case it costs about the same to get a cooked bird as a raw one.

    Trina, I don't have the recipe on me, but if you like that sort of Asian/Thai flavor you might like an idea I've used a few times. I make a pretty basic chicken soup base with carrots, onions, celery, zucchini, and pearl barley then add coconut milk, ginger, and plenty of curry power. It certainly cooks pretty thick (but then again all my soups are just short of sliceable =)

  6. Mrs. Guthrie Avatar

    Not a problem at all. 🙂 I stop relatively often, I am just not that fabulous at leaving comments. And don't worry about any weird reactions to your “weird” stuff…. Keep up the good work. You know what is right for your family. Don't let anyone else ever tell you otherwise.

    Glad it has a good shelf life. Between Em and me, we are not very good at remembering it. 😉

  7. Mrs. Guthrie Avatar

    So, the mushroom still sits in my fridge waiting to go to Emily. Oops. She's getting it in a couple days. *whew* If she hasn't already peeked here rather than just chatting with you via facebook, I definitely need to point her in this direction.

    Good decisions. No, it doesn't take a rocket scientist. Just a little effort.

  8. Traci Avatar

    I should plan ahead and make my own stock more often. I have done it but don't do it much, probably because I rarely cook with bone-in chicken, but it's definitely a good idea. Do you have any idea how long stock will keep in the fridge?

    And off the topic (the fish sauce reminded me) do you put anchovy paste in your Caesar dressing?

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