The Kitchen Tools Needed To Achieve Healthy Cooking

The Kitchen Tools Needed To Achieve Healthy Cooking

The following video is thanks to “The Weston A. Price Foundation.” The video is themed: “Journey Back to the Kitchen” and hosted by Sarah Pope, who is a local chapter leader in Florida since 2002.

She will present the appropriate kitchen utensils to use, and the undesirable kitchen tools to toss out. Sarah Pope also blogs at The Healthy Home Economist.

The following information, video and written script is credited to “The Weston A. Price Foundation”.

INTRO

Hi Everyone, my name is Sarah Pope. You may know me from my blog TheHealthyHomeEconomist. I’ve also been a Chapter Leader for the Weston A. Price Foundation since 2002.

In the next few minutes, I’m going to talk to you about setting up your kitchen with the right equipment to prepare nutritious meals for your family. Time spent in the lost art of traditional food preparation is absolutely essential for you and especially your children to avoid the plague of degenerative illness that is sweeping across our modern culture.

You can be very encouraged that traditional cooking need not be a mind numbing chore, however! Modern equipment makes all the difference but it is important to make wise choices which can sometimes be difficult with the dazzling array of gadgets available.

I have been cooking meals for my family from scratch for over 10 years and have spent only a few hundred dollars during that entire time on equipment. Considering that I didn’t have much to start with as I rarely cooked before my children were born, that’s saying a lot!

So which appliances can be considered essential and which optional or even undesirable in your kitchen?

COOKWARE

Let’s start with cookware. Good quality cookware is a very wise investment and the most important use of your financial resources when prioritizing kitchen equipment.

You simply must get rid of any aluminum and nonstick cookware even if aimed at the gourmet market and made from high end materials. Aluminum dissolves when acidic or salty foods are cooked in it and many researchers feel that intake of aluminum is linked to a number of diseases, such as Alzheimer’s.

Nonstick cookware also poses a danger to your health. The chemical PFOA is used in the production of nonstick coatings and this carcinogen can get into your food and pollute the air in your home. PFOA has been linked with birth defects, cancer, and abnormal changes to vital organs.

Instead of nonstick pans, you can use a well-seasoned cast iron pan instead.

Glass, enamel, ceramic, stainless steel and titanium are all suitable materials for general purpose cookware. If you cook acidic foods frequently or suffer from heavy metal toxicity, stainless steel may not be the best choice as nickel and other alloys that are bound with iron in the making of stainless steel have been found to leech into food in small amounts.

BAKEWARE

Bakeware is another essential tool in the kitchen of an established cook. Please note, however, that aluminum bakeware does not necessarily need to be thrown out. Lining aluminum cookie sheets with parchment paper before baking protects the food from contact with the aluminum and is a good stopgap if funds for kitchen equipment are tight.

The same goes for aluminum muffin tins which can be lined with paper baking cups.

If you are in the beginning stages of putting your kitchen together, be sure to invest in stainless steel pans and cookie sheets as they really do not cost much more than aluminum pans.

When buying bread pans new, stoneware or glass are both excellent choices. Stoneware is also good for muffin tins.

STOCKPOT

A good quality stockpot made of stainless steel or enamel is a very important item to have in your kitchen. In my kitchen, I have 3 sizes, an 8 quart, a 12 quart, and a 16 quart. I use at least one of these stockpots on a weekly basis, usually making large batches of homemade broths and soups, portions of which can be frozen for fast meals at a later date.

GLASS OR ENAMEL CASSEROLES

Casserole dishes made of glass or enamel in a variety of sizes make one-dish meals an easy and nontoxic experience. I personally prefer glass dishes with lids so that leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator in the same dish they were cooked in.

CUTTING BOARDS/KNIVES

Good quality knives are an obvious necessity for the person who prepares homemade meals. Serrated knives are best for cutting bread and vegetables while tempered steel knives are optimal for cutting meat. A large chopping knife is a helpful tool as well.

Cutting boards are best made of wood, which is far less likely to harbor pathogenic bacteria than ones made of plastic. Bamboo is my favorite wood for this purpose as it is a sustainable natural resource.

FOOD PROCESSORS

Food processors can be an expensive investment but there is no need to spend a fortune.

In my own kitchen, I have my Mother’s old 1950’s glass blender which still works beautifully, a small Cuisinart food processor that cost about $30 and a handheld blender.

These 3 items perform all the tasks that I require, from grinding nuts and chopping vegetables to blending smoothies.Larger and more expensive food processors are helpful, but certainly not a necessity!

FOOD/BEVERAGE CONTAINERS

Moving on to food storage containers, be aware that plastic is not the best option. Glass mason jars of various sizes are very important to have on hand for lactofermenting fruits and vegetables and for cultured dairy products that you make at home. I myself use pint, quart, and half gallon sized mason jars with regularity.

I also use small glass pyrex bowls for storage of leftovers and for lunchboxes.

Limiting the use of plastic containers in your home is wise, but large plastic jugs do seem to be best for freezing homemade stock and soups. Just be sure never to put plastic containers in the dishwasher as overly hot water breaks down the integrity of the plastic which risks leeching of contaminants into food.

Also for this reason, stock should be put into the plastic jugs after it has cooled.

Always hand wash plastic containers in warm water with a mild dishsoap.

OPTIONAL EQUIPMENT

As you gain traditional cooking experience, you may choose to add a grain grinder, an ice cream maker, or a dehydrator to your collection of kitchen equipment.

All of these appliances are optional. I myself do not have a dehydrator, preferring instead to use the convenience and size of a warm oven to dry my nuts, seeds, and sprouted grains.

I do use an ice cream maker and find this particular appliance of tremendous benefit to my family, as homemade ice cream made with grassfed cream is such a superior snack to store ice cream, even high end brands like Haagen Dazs.

Grain grinders are very helpful once you begin learning how to traditionally prepare grain based foods With a grain grinder, you can grind the flour just before you need it, ensuring that it is always fresh.

AVOID THE MICROWAVE

While popular, the microwave is not a desirable appliance to use in preparing healthy meals for your family. The small amount of research on microwaved foods is not favorable and indications are that abnormal changes to vitamin content and availability occurs when food is microwaved. The blood profiles of those who consume microwaved food is similar to the blood profiles of people in the early stages of cancer.

Microwaving milk is especially dangerous as it alters the amino acids in a manner that can be toxic to the liver and nervous system.

It is best to resist using a microwave for any culinary purpose. However, there is no need to remove it from your kitchen. It does serve as an excellent, airtight cupboard for storing birthday cakes and other freshly made baked goods.

ENDING SEGMENT

As you can see, there is no need to break the bank when setting up your kitchen for traditional cooking.

The minimum to get started is really just a high-quality saucepan and frying pan, some cutting knives and cutting boards.

The most important thing is to not let yourself get bogged down in decisions about appliances and rather just get started cooking!

A JOURNEY BACK TO THE KITCHEN VIDEO
By Sarah Pope

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Read more information on the dangers of non-stick aluminum cookware: Non Stick Ceramic Cookware versus Non Stick Teflon

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Endive and Fruit Salad with Chicken

Endive and Fruit Salad with Chicken

If you enjoy leafy greens or salad greens you will enjoy this unique salad green that was discovered by accident in Belgium in the 1800’s. It grows in the dark with the use of chicory. Another reference for this lettuce is chicory heads. The vegetable we are referencing is “Endive“.

Enjoy the video and we hope you enjoy preparing Endive and Fruit Salad with Chicken.

 

Research on Endives reports the following positive health effects:

  • Lowers glucose levels in the blood stream and helps control insulin resistance.
  • Reduces LDL cholesterol levels (bad).
  • High in dietary fiber.
  • Improves skin health and helps improve eyesight and protects the body from certain types of cancers.
  • The vitamin B complex content in endives such as folic acid, thiamin, niacin, and pantothenic acid encourages the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats.
  • Helps with digestion by increasing and stimulating the appetite because of the bitter juices from the leaves that improve the secretion of bile.
  • Natural diuretic as it consists of 95% water.
  • Eating endives regularly can help clear skin of acne problems.
  • Making a juice of endive leaves, celery and carrot can help to treat respiratory problems like asthma.
  • Parsley and celery juice with endives added to it can be used to treat anemia.
  • You could treat constipation by mixing endive juice with either apple juice or carrot juice.
  • Blend endive juice with carrot and celery or parsley and spinach juices for an effective treatment for eye problems such as glaucoma or cataract.

Endive and Fruit Salad with Chicken

Preparation is for 2 servings.

1 endive

½ grapefruit

1 orange

1 Granny Smith apple, grated

1 leek stalk

2 tbsp. chopped pecans

4 tbsp. Greek yogurt

2 tbsp. cream

2 tbsp. orange juice

2 chicken breasts cut into fillets and into strips

2 tsp olive oil

1 tsp. vinegar

Dash salt and pepper

Heat a large skillet with oil and cook chicken until no more pink. Add pecans and sauté briefly.

Slice endive in ½ inch thick strips, remove peel and cube grapefruit and orange, grate apple and cut leek stalk in rings. Mix all ingredients together in a large salad bowl.

In a small bowl mix yogurt, cream, orange juice, vinegar, salt and pepper and pour over salad and toss.

Plate salad and top with chicken strips.

 

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Roasted Butternut Squash and Sausage with Gluten Free Penne Pasta

Roasted Butternut Squash and Sausage with Gluten Free Penne Pasta - close up

Dinner was wonderful tonight with this gluten-free Penne pasta dish. It was mixed with a Brown Butter Sage sauce.

Sage has a history of being used in folk medicine apart from culinary uses. It is most commonly drunk as a tea, as the herb is good for the nerves, digestive system and for balancing estrogen levels in women.

Sage can help calm a fever, and is also natural blood purifier. It can also be useful for aiding the liver for detoxification purposes. Sage is also a natural nerve tonic to relieve a nervous headache.

Do you have joint pain, lethargy or a weak digestive system? Sage could be the answer for you.

Sage is usually an herb that accompanies chicken, and that is what the sausage is, a chicken sausage mixed with apple and cinnamon. The Penne pasta used in this recipe is a multi-grain gluten-free pasta. The grains include brown rice, quinoa, and amaranth. The quinoa seed is native to Peru, and the amaranth seed is native to Mexico.

Quinoa is not a true grain but a seed, and it contains the most protein when compared to any other grain. Both quinoa and amaranth also are great for keeping your blood sugars leveled.

Now for our featured recipe, “Roasted Butternut Squash and Sausage with Gluten Free Penne Pasta” in a “Brown Butter Sage Sauce”. Both the chicken sausage and pasta are organically grown ingredients. Here is what you will need:

4 tbsp. olive oil

1 package chicken sausage

3 cups multi-grain gluten-free, Penne pasta

2 cups cubed, butternut squash

1 tbsp. dark brown sugar

½ cup pecan pieces

1 stick, salted butter

8 sage leaves, small

½ tsp. Himalayan Salt

½ tsp. black pepper

Slide a small baking sheet into your oven and preheat it to 400 degrees.

Cook gluten-free pasta according to package instructions. Any brand will do. We used De Boles.

preparing butternut sqaush for Roasted Butternut Squash and Sausage with Gluten Free Penne PastaPeel and cube up two cups of butternut squash. In a bowl, toss the squash with olive oil, salt, pepper and dark brown sugar. Remove heated baking sheet from oven, add the squash to the aluminum folded lined hot baking pan and place back into the oven and roast for 20-25 minutes, stirring once during the cooking time. Remove once the squash is tender.

searing chicken sausage for Roasted Butternut Squash and Sausage with Gluten Free Penne PastaIn a large medium heated skillet, add olive oil and sear the chicken sausages on all sides. Remove, slice and add back to the pan to cook the centers.

In a large mixing bowl, combine sausage, pasta and butternut squash, and set aside.

We provided this 39 second video as an illustration  for making the “Brown Butter Sage Sauce.”

Heat a 10 inch skillet on medium heat. Place the stick of cold butter into the hot pan, lift and swirl the butter. Add in the sage leaves and keep swirling until the butter has completely melted, should be a deep brown color, but not to the point of burning.

adding pecan pieces to Roasted Butternut Squash and Sausage with Gluten Free Penne Pasta

After you have poured the brown butter sage sauce over the pasta, toss to mix well. Sprinkle pecan pieces over top and mix in.

 

Roasted Butternut Squash and Sausage with Gluten Free Penne Pasta - close upPlate and serve.

 

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Chopped Broccoli Tomato and Bacon Salad

Chopped Broccoli Tomato and Bacon Salad

This salad also includes eggs for an extra punch of protein. The salad has a carbohydrate (tomato), vegetable, fat, and a protein. It was also made with homemade mayonnaise that includes olive oil and avocado oil in its preparation. This salad contains omega-3, great for the skin, heart, and your emotional well-being.

The broccoli and cauliflower are crusiferous vegetables, at which are great for warding off cancer cells, with only 4 serving per week. Any other vegetable needs to be eaten ten times a day to get the same cancer protection results.

An added bonus to this recipe is what cauliflower does. It helps balance hormones by reducing excess estrogen. For an age-male that can be something good. Stroke is the third leading cause of death and the leading cause of age-related disability. Abnormal blood clotting in the cerebral blood vessels is the most common cause of stroke. Studies have shown excess estrogen in men promotes abnormal blood clots.

In women, excessive estrogen is weight problems, emotional problems, and including irregular menstrual periods. Either, heavy or light bleeding or no bleeding at all.

So if you just decided to like cauliflower, will no better time then right now and with such a great recipe Chopped Broccoli Tomato and Bacon Salad. This salad can even be a meal in itself as it contains protein, with both the bacon and eggs included as ingredients.

Enjoy the video.


Chopped Broccoli Tomato and Bacon Salad

4 bunches broccoli, chopped

½ head cauliflower, chopped

12 bacon strips, cooked and cut into 1 inch strips

1 cup tomatoes, seeded and chopped

1/3 cup white onion, chopped

2 hard-cooked eggs, diced

1 cup mayonnaise (homemade recipe to follow)

1/3 cup sugar

2 tablespoons balsamic  vinegar

In a large salad bowl, combine the; set aside.

In a large salad bowl, combine the mayonnaise, sugar and vinegar. Add broccoli, cauliflower, bacon, tomatoes, onion and eggs. Mix vegeatble/bacon miture with wet ingredients, till well coated. Plate and serve.

Watch the video for homemade mayonnaise, made with both olive oil and avocado oil.

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What We Do When We’er Not In The Kitchen

Cooking on the Stove

On our About page of Splendid Recipes and More it explains saying, “We offer recipes with regards to taste, your health, and feeling good while eating. The “More” in our web-site title is all about what we offer besides delectable recipes.”

If you are a regular reading of our site, you know all about the extras we have posted about besides food recipes. We’ve even had a few blog guests.

We who love and enjoy to cook and bake in the kitchen do so because we want to make others happy, and it is a stress reliever, oh and not to forget, eating is a lot of fun.

But do we have other interests besides cooking and baking? Some of you who read this blog are writers, you collect and write about news topics or short stories and the such. Some of you even write poems, or just take photo shots and post about them.

But I guess I can say that we all have other interests. Those of us here at Splendid Recipes and More have several interests, including a hobby outside the kitchen, and as a matter of fact, outside in my back yard.

View the video to find out. Let us know as well as others, what your interests are outside the kitchen, by leaving your comments below!! Please enjoy the video!!

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Pesto Orecchiette with Chicken Sausage

Pesto Orrechette with Chicken Sausage

Italian cuisine is always an elaborate meal. You gather several ingredients and spend half the day or more. But this recipe , this Italian pasta dish, is fast , simple and easy in under 40 minutes. It has vegetables for lots of vitamins and minerals. Garlic good for digestion and helps fight against stomach cancer. Also controls your blood pressure.

Basil leaves contain much health benefiting essential oils such as eugenol, citronellol, linalool, citral, limonene and terpineol. These compounds are known to have anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Vitamin K in basil is essential for many coagulant factors in the blood and plays a vital role in the bone strengthening function by helping the mineralization process in the bones.

As a side note this is a great nutritional meal for those who suffer with Schizophrenia (Read More Here: Nutritional Hope for Schizophrenic Patients).

What is pasta Orecchiette?

Pasta-Orecchiette

Orecchiette is a type of pasta shaped roughly like small ears, hence the name Orecchiette which in Italian means little ears. It is pasta typical of Puglia, a region of southern Italy.

Orecchiette is about ¾ of an inch across, somewhat domed, and the center is thinner than the rim of the pasta therefore, giving the pasta its interestingly variable texture soft in the middle and a little chewier on the outer part. You can purchase it with a  smooth surface, as in the image or with ridges. Both are the same flavor and texture.

Enjoy the food video!!

 

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Warm Brussels sprouts and Dilled Potato Salad

Warm Brussels Sprouts and Dilled Potato Salad

The high fiber that Brussels sprouts contain can lower cholesterol by binding with bile acids that the liver produces from cholesterol for digesting fat.

The vitamins and minerals found in Brussels sprouts, include vitamins C, E, and A, and the mineral manganese.

Brussels sprouts are high in vitamin-K  about 273.5% per 8 ounce. Vitamin-K promotes healthy bones, prevents calcification of body tissues, and also helps as an anti-inflammatory agent, and also essential for brain and nerve function.

Studies have shown it can ward off cancer with only 4 servings a week compared to 10 servings a day of any other vegetable that isn’t part of the family of cruciferous vegetables.

Enjoy the video.

Print a copy of the recipe 

Warm Brussels sprouts and Dilled Potato Salad   

1 lb. baby potatoes, washed, skins left on

10 oz. Brussels sprouts, sliced

6 min-sweet peppers, seeded, diced

4 tbsp. avocado oil, divided

1/3 cup almonds, slivered

1 tsp. dried dill

¼ cup balsamic vinegar infused with pomegranate

½ tsp. salt

Heat oven to 350 degrees

Wash potatoes and roast in oven 25 to 30 minutes. Set aside.

Slice Brussels sprouts and sauté in heated pan with 3 tbsp. avocado oil.

Add slivered almonds and continue to sauté for 4 to 5 minutes.

Add mixture to potatoes. Set aside.

Wash peppers and remove seeds. Dice and add to salad mixture.

Mix in 1 tsp. dry dill. Add balsamic vinegar and 1 tbsp. avocado oil and mix until well incorporated.

Next add 1/2 tsp. salt and mix in well.

Plate and serve with your favorite meat.

 Print a copy of the recipe here

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