There are so many ways to get an accidental dose of sulfites, that I am always on the lookout for natural healthy versions of everything I come into contact with. Toothpaste is definitely on my list – and really, so super easy and cheap that it just doesn’t make sense not to make it.
- 1/4 cup extra virgin coconut oil
- 1/4 cup organic baking soda
- 10 drops essential oil (food grade)
Heat the coconut oil in a small jar in the microwave for about 30 seconds until it is mostly melted. Stir in the baking soda. Add essential oil. Stir again. I typically use spearmint or wintergreen, but go crazy with whatever flavor you like. I use Young Living Oils because they are excellent quality, but I find Mountain Rose herbs makes a fantastic product as well. I find with the minty flavor, my mind “reads” it as sweet, but you could put some stevia in there if you really need the sweet boost. Added bonus – coconut oil is super good for your gums and whitens your teeth. Yep – that is all there is to it!
So – I loves me some dairy. And I had to give up a LOT of it. But – truth told – I grew up in a community where shmear was almost a religious experience and I have been missing it so much! so – this SUPER easy recipe will get all those darn additives out of your cream cheese and you will LOVE this. Enjoy it on that rye flat bread:
Yeah, that is pretty much it.
So here is what you do:
Take the yogurt and place it in a bowl in a fine mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth. Place it in the fridge for 24 hours.
There – you have cream cheese. Simple, like I promised……
It should be crispy and brown when it is ready!
Bread is a tough one – if I can find it without some ingredient that is a sulfite culprit, it is pretty awful or is mostly white flour – and believe it or not, I am choosing to not eat garbage food even if it is sulfite free! Add to that – I am much more of a cook than a baker so I really don’t want to get into the whole yeast, bread rising adventure that baking bread usually means and consequently, I rarely eat the stuff. But – I MISS BREAD. So – I went down the path of – pan bread. This was is so delicious, so easy and you don’t have to wait half the day to enjoy it. Full disclosure – my boyfriend, Nature Boy is really the one who worked out the exact proportions for this to work, so he gets a lot of the cred for it. All the timing details are mine because he has decided cooking is an art and not a science and he can’t be bothered with a timer….
- 1 cup rye flour
- 1 1/3 cups water
- 2 T plus 2 T butter (or oil)
- dash of salt
I cook this in my grandmas cast iron skillet. It is a 12″ version and works perfectly as far as getting it the right depth. Take 2 T butter and put them in the pan. Place the pan in an oven preheated to 350 degrees to warm and melt the butter. Melt the remaining butter. Mix the flour, water, salt and melted butter and pour into the heated pan. Place on lower rack for 30 minutes. You can move the pan up to the top rack if you have an oven that heats from the top for the last 10 minutes to brown the top more. When a toothpick pulls clean from the middle, it is done. If you leave it in much longer, the outer edge will get very crispy and cracker like.
You can toast this and it gets crispy and delicious. Toast it more and it becomes more cracker like.
Wrapped, tied up duck breasts hanging up curing
I don’t know about you, but I miss ham. A lot (I also miss bacon, but that is a story for another day). However, as pork is off the menu, this alternative is a delicious way to make up for all that. As a bonus, the hardest part of the whole recipe is waiting for it to be done!
- 2 organic duck breasts, with skins trimmed off (but leave the fat if you can)
- 3 cups coarse sea salt
- 2 Tablespoons thyme and savory, mixed (you could use rosemary instead if you prefer)
- You will also need cheesecloth, butcher’s string and some means of hanging it up
Mix the salt and herbs and coat the duck breasts with it. Put the remainder of the salt mixture in a plastic bag and put the duck breasts in. Squeeze as much of the air out of the bag as you can. Place in the refrigerator for 24 – 48 hours. When the meat is dense and stiff, take it out of the bag and rinse off the brine mixture. Pat it dry and wrap in cheesecloth. Tie with the butcher’s string and hang in the fridge for a week or so. I used a banana hook to hang mine, but however you can get it done is fine as long as you make sure air can circulate around it. after 7 – 10 days unwrap and enjoy. It is very salty, so slice it thin – I used a mandolin slicer and it was perfect with a little cream cheese on rye flat bread. Or you know – plain off the cutting board….
Duck ham hors doeuvres ready for my party!
So as part of my reactions/detox I sweat. I sweat a lot. And not in the good way. My sweat is – stanky. I know it is because I am getting rid of the sulfur compounds that are making me sick and I am grateful. But in real life, it sucks to smell like garlic or onions. To smell STRONGLY of garlic or onions. To smell strongly of garlic or onions WHEN I AM DRYING MYSELF OFF FROM A SHOWER. But – let’s be honest – deodorants are laughably out. So what is a girl who doesn’t want to be stinky to do? Well – apparently this – because this is the best. darned. deodorant. I. have. ever. used. No, really. not a hint of any bad smells since the day I started. Such relief from my embarrassment!
- 5 – 10 Tablespoons Coconut Oil (I started with 5 and kept adding until it was the right consistency)
- 1 Tablespoon Baking Soda
- 6 Tablespoons Arrowroot Powder
- 3 Tablespoons Bentonite Clay ( I get mine from Mountain Rose Herbs)
- 20 – 30 drops of the essential oil of your choice (I used Lavender, but mix and match as it suits you)
Mix everything together and use a small amount under each arm, covering thoroughly.
If your home is a lower temp than the melting oil of coconut (approximately 70 degrees) it will be rock hard in the AM. You can either dig some out, rub it until warm between your hands or fill up the sink with hot water and let it warm while you shower – both work about as well.
So – honestly my big issue with this was that the bentonite clay is grey and I was worried about it staining my clothing. So the result was – it did rub off on my clothes, but looked no worse that commercial deodorant at the end of the day – kinda whitish and in the end it totally washed out and didn’t leave yellow stains like the chemical crap. And I smell as fresh as a daisy. If daisies were 1000 times better and smelled like coconut and lavender.
Yeah, you heard me. I know you think the sulfites have finally gotten to me and I have gone off my rocker, but I am telling you – this pudding is so much awesome that I have shared it far and wide with non sulfite sufferers and it has been given the thumbs up. I have had two out of the ten or so folks I polled actually say they can taste the avocado, but I cannot. Just try it, you are going to love it (oh, and it is super easy!!!)
- 8 very ripe avocados
- 1 cup organic cacao powder
- 1 1/2 cups honey
- 3 teaspoons vanilla (I make my own because commercially made often uses corn based alcohol which will be sulfited. It is super easy to make, I use organic vanilla beans, Absolut and time)
Put all ingredients in a food processor and mix until deliciously creamy. Yep. That’s it. It is better chilled, but I had it right out of the processor and it was still yummy.
I have missed mayonnaise ever since I was diagnosed with a sulfite sensitivity, but have never found a recipe that did not contain eggs that seemed decent or adaptable. I recently discovered that you can emulsify oil with milk if you are careful. Huzzah – I can now make mayo!
- 1/3 cup very cold full fat milk
- 3/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
- About 3/4 cup olive oil (or 1/2 sunflower oil and 1/4 cup olive oil for a milder flavor
- Sea salt
Combine the milk, lemon juice and pepper in a blender. Blend on high until frothy. Continuing to blend on high, very slowly begin to add the oil one drop at a time. slowly increase this to a very thin drizzle. The mixture will thicken to a creamy blend, slightly softer that a store-bought mayo. Salt to taste.
Once you get the basic technique down, you can go crazy with herbs. Cilantro, ginger, tomato paste – really anything fresh that you can blend in there. (Ok, I suppose you could use dried herbs in a pinch, but those will stay solid and not blend in like the fresh herbs do).
If you don’t have a blender, you could do it with a stick type hand-held blender to mix it with – just be sure you keep moving it up and down as you blend. I don’t think I could drizzle and blend at the same time, so that way might make it a two person job!
I am always trying to figure out how to feel better and a while back, I realize I feel crummy when I eat gluten. Not a reaction, mind you – just feeling crummy. Now, I want to feel good – but REALLY??? One MORE thing I can’t eat. I loves me some bread. So I have been looking for alternatives. This delicious bread is reminiscent of naan for me. It is mild and delicious and makes me happy.
- 1 cup (4 1/2 ounces) chickpea flour
- 1 cup (8 ounces) water
- 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for the pan
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
Whisk together the chickpea flour, water, olive oil, and salt in a small bowl. Let rest for 1/2 hour to 2 hours to give the flour time to absorb the water. (OK, I have done it immediately as well. If you don’t wait, you end up with a very thin bread in the end, the longer you wait the more the bread rises). Set an oven rack six inches below your oven’s broiler and turn on the broiler. Warm a cast iron skillet or other baking dish for a few minutes. Remove the skillet from the oven and coat the pan with a little olive oil. Whisk the chickpea batter again and then pour into the hot skillet. Broil until you see the top of the bread begin to blister and brown (it took me about 20 minutes, but you can split the socca batter in half and do it in less time and have a thinner bread). If the top browns too much before the batter is fully set, move the skillet to a lower oven rack until done. The socca should be fairly flexible in the middle but crispy on the edges.
You can also bake it on 450 if you want. You can go crazy with this basic recipe – add herbs or spices to your taste. I think a savory, thyme and marjoram blend would be great. A little turmeric and cayenne would be nice dipped in guac. I think I will experiment with a bit of honey and some cinnamon next – breakfast bread!
I have so many problems with lotions and such (although there are a couple of Arbonne products that I dearly love). I decided to try my hand at some more natural alternatives and since my boyfriends hands are perpetually dry, I thought lotion would be a great place to start. I chose a lavender essential oil for mine, just because I loves me some lavender and I figured I was the one who had to smell him…. So, this made kind of a mess in the kitchen (and by kind of, I mean – a oily, waxy mess that was a pain to clean up – but it is sooooo worth it now. And I made an extra jar for me, so I get to smell my lavender scented hands all the time!
- 1 cup water (room temperature)
- 3 Tablespoons beeswax (I used a big old block that I shaved pieces off of, and I recommend using the already made into little pieces variety – just make sure it is pure and doesn’t have any added ingredients in it!)
- 3/4 cup coconut oil – or olive or almond – whatever you have that you don’t react to!
- 15 – 30 drops essential oil (I used 30+ but I am a scent junkie!!)
Place the coconut oil and beeswax in a double boiler. OK – full disclosure, I do not have a double boiler – I put a glass mixing bowl in a pan of water and heated it up like that and it worked just dandy! Melt on a medium heat until liquid. Add essential oil (be careful, some cheaper oils use chemicals for extraction – I love Young Living or Mountain Rose). Put your water in a food processor with a large blade. With the food processor mixing the water slowly drizzle the melted mixture in. You have to go very slowly because you are emulsifying the mixture. Just keep drizzling it in until it is all in the food processor. Keep processing until the mixture is creamy. Stop and scrape down the sides several times and keep processing. When it is creamy, smooth and light, it is done. Jar is up and get ready for clean up with LOTS of hot water.
I have had a lot of inquiries of late for personal care items that are sulfite free, so I am starting my collection of recipes for your body. This scrub is so easy, and your skin will feel like heaven.
- Coarse Sea Salt
- Olive Oil
- Lavender Essential Oil (or really whatever oil you like)
OK – so I am sure the first thing you noticed is that there are no amounts in this recipe. That is for a very good reason – the actual amounts don’t much matter. It really depends on the size of your jar. Fill your wide mouthed jar of choice almost to the top with the coarse salt. Pour the oil slowly in until it soaks through the salt and creates a small oil layer on top of the salt. Add the essential oils until you are happy. Stir. Yep, that is it. When you use the scrub, be sure not to wash, but just rinse when you are done. That way the oil will moisturize your hands and not wash off.