Tuesday, December 22, 2009

GAPS Lasagne

We have family over for the Christmas season, and I have been busy in the kitchen making all kinds of non-GAPS treats, that I have been (sometimes) successfully resisting.

Tonight I made lasagne but I didnt want to miss out so I made the following GAPS version for hubby and I to share. It is a tweaked version on a recipe I found on the net. Unfortunately I didnt keep the link to give credit - but I have altered the recipe enough to make it my own.

Enjoy this dish it is absolutely delicious.


2 - 3 Zuchini
1 T lard or coconut oil
1 Large onion
1 large beef steak - cut into thin strips
One large pinch of basil, oregano, thyme
1 large handful of pecan or walnuts
1/4 cauliflower diced
1-2 cups tomato puree
2 pinches salt
pepper to taste

Melt a little fat into a lasagne dish and grease bottom.
Slice the zuchini lengthwise and lay a few slices in the lasagne dish to cover bottom.

Fry the onion in the lard on low heat
Add the beef strips and stew in the fat for a few minutes
Add herbs and and tomato pure
Cover pot and simmer 10 mins
Add cauliflower and nuts simmer a few minutes

Pour a little tomato mix over the zucchini slices
add another layer of zucchini before pouring some more tomato mix over that too.

If you can tolerate cheese then add some grated cheese between each layer too.

top off with some chopped parsley and grated cheese. ( I dont tolerate very much dairy but I could have the cheese on top without any problems).

Bake for 30 -60 mins at 180 degrees celcius. (my oven is super fast and our lasagne was ready in 30 mins. I also dont like my zucchini overly soft. The original recipe called for 60 minutes so you can adapt as needed).

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Turkey "Rissotto"

Gosh I have been so slack with adding the recipes that I promised. Ive been so busy with my new job that the blog has been severely neglected.

So here is our current favourite meal, "Turkey Hash". It is suprisingly delicious. We call it "rissotto" as it is a good substitute when you are feeling like rice. We recently had a boy staying over at our house and I served this up and just said it was rissotto. Said boy ate 3 bowls full, even though his mother swears he never eats vegetables!

I found this one on the grainfree foodies blog - here is the link: http://grainfreefoodie.blogspot.com/2009/06/turkey-hash.html

Turkey Hash

3-4 Tbsp. butter
1 large onion, chopped
2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
1 large stalk of celery, chopped
1 tsp. dried sage, rubbed
1 tsp. dried rosemary, crushed
1 tsp. dried thyme, rubbed
1 head of cauliflower, cored and finely chopped (I use a food processor.)
1 -2 cups cooked chopped turkey meat
Turkey or chicken broth as needed to keep from sticking
Salt and pepper to taste

My Tweak: We also add capsicum, broccoli, bok choy, and lots of garlic


In a large frying pan or wok, cook onion, carrots, and celery in the butter until they are starting to soften. Add dried herbs, rubbing to release flavor. Stir. Add cauliflower, turkey and some broth to keep from sticking. Continue cooking and stirring until cauliflower is cooked through and the veggies begin to caramelize. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

My Tweak: We use a rolled boneless turkey leg that we get from the butcher and slow roast it the night before.


How to Render Fat

Here is my suggestions for rendering fat, although there are some variations on this and you could check the web for others.

I usually buy 2 kilos at a time of port back fat or beef suet. Some butchers sell “grated” suet, it is more expensive but it comes in little granule that you can add direct to your cooking. I prefer to do the rendering myself and save the money.

I like to put the fat in the oven in a large/deep baking tray and cover it with another baking tray to stop it spattering everywhere. I cook it at about 150 Celesius for about 40 – 60 mins. Basically just keep checking it and when there is a nice pool of fat at the bottom of the pan you can pour it off into some jars. Then stick it back in the oven to cook some more and you will usually end up with another pool of fat that you can pour off. This process can be continued several times but the fat at the end starts to become a little browner and I like my lard/tallow to be white.

The jars you use need to made of nice thick glass with wide necks. Any mayonnaise or pickles jars will do the trick. I tried using some glass jars that I had bought at a discount store and they broke when I poured the hot fat in. The sides where obviously too thin.

You also need to sterilize the jars before putting the fat in, and it is a good idea to put the fat into a warm jar anyway, so the way I sterilize them is to just lay them on their sides, (without lids) in the oven for a few minutes before I am ready to pour the fat. They get hot really quickly so when you pull them out use an oven mitt.

I just place them in the sink on a couple of paper towels and then pour the fat in. The paper towels catch any drips.

Leave them on the bench for several hours until cooled and then refrigerate the lard (from pork) and the tallow (from Beef) can be left in a cool place – although I do put mine in the fridge.

Now is the fun part the cleaning up. I usually get fat on everything. LOL. Dump out the big grizzly lump of fat that is left, into the bin. Then wipe out the fat tray using a paper towel. I then also use my enjo grease mitt to get the last of the grease off and then was with soapy water.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

No more sore throat

A few weeks ago I got really sick of being sick all the time and decided to scour the web for a cure to the sore throat I have had for the past 2 years.

This has probably been the most annoying symptom I have had, as unlike all the other body issues I have, it has not responded to the diet.

So while searching for a solution I stumbled across the following suggestion for teeth brushing:

Equal quantities of salt and bicarb soda, mixed with hydrogen peroxide 3%.

I started brushing my teeth with it several times a day. Any time that I noticed my throat was sore again, I brushed my tongue, teeth and then gargle the mixture. It really foams up when it comes in contact with the bacteria in my mouth, which is very satisfying at the times when I feel really gross and my breath really smells - it makes a wonderful visual and sensory show of killing all those bugs.

In my desperation, I also decided to tweak a few more things in my diet to see if that would help. I cut out all nuts, legumes, and fruit, as I read that others have found this helpful.

The diet changes and the new dental hygiene routine really did the trick. For the first time in years I have been free of a sore throat - for days on end!! (And now weeks on end).

I have tried adding back the fruit, but it brings back the sore throat within minutes!! Weird but true.

The same happens with nuts but it takes longer.

Ive cut back the brushing to just twice a day as I don't need the extra oral cleanse now that my sore throat is gone.

My diet does seem very restricted without all those extra yummy foods, and Im eating a LOT of eggs as snacks. But it has been soooo worth the change.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Herbal Insect repellant

This recipe is from http://www.bulkherbstore.com/VFT I had to add it to my blog as it looks so interesting and the testimonials sound great. I haven't had a chance to make it yet but with summer coming on I will definitely be giving it a go.


2 tablespoons Rosemary
2 tablespoons Sage
2 tablespoons Lavender
2 tablespoons Wormwood
2 tablespoons Peppermint
2 tablespoons fresh, chopped garlic
2 quarts of apple cider vinegar


Combine 12 tablespoons of the premixed herbs and 2 quarts of vinegar in a sealed glass jar, and steep in a cool, dark place for 2 weeks or so, shaking daily. Then, strain out the used herbs, and retain the herbal liquid mixture.

Add several cloves of crushed garlic, and close lid. Let soak for three days, and strain out the garlic fiber and discard.

This liquid tincture needs to be stored in a cool place, like the refrigerator. It can be preserved for a very long period of time by canning. To do so, fill canning jars with boiling liquid tincture to within one-half inch of top. Cap with rubber seal canning lid, tighten ring, and turn hot jar upside down; leave it undisturbed until it cools to room temperature. This will cause the jar to seal.

Don’t forget to date and label it.

This is for external use ONLY. DO NOT use it internally. DO NOT use on broken skin.

Monday, October 12, 2009


This last few weeks have been up and down for me. I haven't really "cheated" on the diet. I am still GAPS legal, but I have been eating foods that are just too advanced for my gut at this stage.

The frustrating thing is that I was going so well and seeing some definite strides forward, but I was struggling with the intro diet during the course that I did several weeks ago and so I allowed myself some fruit each day, and a GAPS legal bread that contains a small amount of honey.

I didn't see a reaction straight away, which was wonderful, but now several of my old symptoms are back and worst of all, I am finding it very hard to go back to the intro diet again. Each day I wake up and promise myself that I will stay away from the GAPS muffins that I make for my son, and that I wont eat any fruit, but each day I end up CRAVING something else to eat. Its not really hunger as I often grab an egg or another bowl of soup when I am hankering for something, but often I am still left with a desire for something more "filling". At least that is the word that seems to go with the feeling I have. Im assuming that in the past I have felt that craving for carbs and assumed it was actually hunger. Im realising it is not, but am still finding it hard to resist the desire to fill the gap with carbs.

My current symptoms are: sore throat, fatigue and eczema. This is still a lot less symptoms than I have had in the past, which I am grateful for, but it is time to move forward and put a stop to these too.

Ive been ruminating on how I face the craving monster and I have come up with a few strategies.

1. I need to address the sore throat and it just so happens that there have been some terrific suggestions on the yahoo group about that this week. (Ill post them at the bottom of the page).

2. I need to find a low carb filler that allows me to transition back to the diet I was on before my course. I thought I would try the "carrot cake bread" that I make for the kids, minus the honey. My kids call it carrot cake bread because it does taste a bit like carrot cake. However, it is meant to the a bread substitute. It does contain nut butter, so I will experiment with some pecan butter and see how I go. (I will include the recipe in the next blog entry).

3. I will try adding a couple of electrolyte drinks per day, as the lemon juice might help quench the carb cravings. (Electrolyte drink is just a glass filtered water with half teaspoon salt and juice of half a lemon)

4. I have started adding a teaspoon of coconut oil before each meal to help keep my bowels moving, and I am also hoping that this will help the cravings

5. I need something more for lunch than just soup. I have made extra dinner tonight so I will have that for lunch along with the soup.

6. I need to do some more research on intro recipes. Ill post what I find.

Here are the Sore throat cures:
  • Chew and swallow a clove of garlic. It is not pleasant but works wonderfully to get rid of a sore throat. It would help the thrush too. Followed with cup of strong mint tea to freshen the mouth.
  • Gargle with warm water with some cayenne pepper and sea salt. I do them separately, but you can put them together.
    I make the cayenne as hot as I can stand it. It is also known as an antifungal so should be good for thrush as well.
  • Rub oil of oregano (small amount) or essential oils on the outside of your neck/throat.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Autism and GAPS link

Here is a terrific link that I found explaining some of the diets that are commonly used for healing Autism - Gaps being one of them.


Wednesday, October 7, 2009


This is an adaptation of Baden's "Sunflower Carrot Pizzazz"

I made this dish recently and it was soooo delicious I intend to add it to my regular menu. I didnt start out with the intention of making pizza. I just wanted to cut the cost of our meat bill and so I had been looking for some vegetarian options and stumbled on Baden's recipe. As I was making it it occurred to me that it needed a little something so I added cheese to the top and then when I served it up with dinner, we all agreed that it tasted a little like pizza even without the tomato paste base.

1 cup ground sunflower seeds (soaked and then dehydrated before grinding in coffee grinder)
2 very large carrots grated
1 very large beetroot grated
1 large onion finely diced
Basil and oregano
Salt to taste
egg (optional) I didn’t use one and it still held together fairly well
Coconut oil (optional)
Your choice of veges and cheese for the top

  • Put all ingredients except veges and cheese into food processor and make into a paste
  • Grease a glass lasagna dish and spread paste in the base
  • Bake at 140 C for 20 mins

For the topping I didn’t bother with the tomato paste but you could if you like that. I just layered slices of broccoli and zucchini on the base along with some thyme and basil and then topped with a very sparse covering of grated cheese. Of course you can use any topping but broccoli is my all time favourite on pizza so it was a must for us. I also don’t like to have too many toppings, but add as many as you like

  • Put the whole thing back in the oven and Bake until cheese is brown (dont forget to turn the oven up a little for the second bake)

This was even better the next day with salad

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Aloo ki tikki

This is an a GAPS rendition of the Indian dish called Aloo ki tikki. Usually made with potato I have modified the recipe to be made with pumpkin and carrot as well as swapping the besan flour for sunflower seeds.

These little vegetarian patties are to die for. Such a treat for me and a great break from the monotony of meat.

300g carrot
200g pumpkin
1 T fat
2 green chillies finely chopped
1/2 large onion finely chopped
2 cm piece of ginger, grated
1 t turmeric
1 t cumin
1 t coriander
1/2 t garam masala
2 T sunflower seeds pre-soaked and dehydrated, then milled in coffee grinder.
1 T lemon juice
Fat for frying

Steam or boil carrot and pumpkin
Drain and mash
Saute Onion, chilli and ginger in 1 T fat for 2 mins
Add spices and saute until fragrant
Mix in with the mashed vegetables and add lemon juice and salt to taste.
Stir in the sunflower seed flour, adding more if a firmer patty is preferred
Make little patties and fry in 2mm of fat.

These didnt hold together very well, so I intend to add an egg next time to improve this. Despite this the rissoles where absolutely delicious and there were no left overs for lunch the next day, much to my disappointment.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Salmon Patties

Ive decided to give the Real Food Wednesdays a try on my blog. I love reading all the blog entries on this group so I thought I would join in. Lets hope this works!

I thought I would share what we had for dinner tonight. It is an old favourite that I cut out of a magazine years ago. Apparently it is a recipe that Candice Bergen contributed to a charity cookbook called: Star Palate, Celebrity Cookbook for a Cure

I love this recipe because it is soooo simple AND it is gaps friendly.

I left out the ricotta tonight as we are dairy free at the moment, but in the past I have favoured Goats Feta over ricotta in this recipe.


Salmon Burgers

675g Salmon fillets
5 large green onions (we use spring onions)
2 tsp fresh chopped dill
3 tsp lemon juice
1 ½ Tblsp ricotta
2 egg yolks (use the whites to make almond crescents - will post recipe next week)
¾ tsp salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
Fat for cooking

Pulse salmon in food processor until finely chopped but not puree
Combine with all other ingredience except fat
Form small patties with hands.
Heat fat in cast iron pan
Cook patties over medium/high heat until crisp and golden on each side.

Serve with salad greens, tomato, avacado and sauerkraut.

This post is part of Real Food Wednesdays hosted by Kelly the Kitchen Kop!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Teeth troubles

I have had trouble with receeding gums for about a year. I have found that being on GAPS has helped but not completely overcome this problem.

Recently there was some discussion on the GAPS list about this topic and the following was suggested.

"Pastured raw butter, Green Pastures fermented cod liver oil, xylitol mints, rinse with water after every meal, oil pulling, non toxic toothpaste or toothsoap for brushing. Also eating raw liver and apply raw bone marrow topically. These are the things I've found are most helpful for remineralizing and keeping teeth healthy. "

Here is the explanation that was posted for "Oil Pulling":

Take 1tablespoon of olive oil, and rinse for 5minutes, in between the front-teeth especially.Then spit out, and rinse your mouth with baking soda + water.

Do not do it longer than 5mins, otherwise the toxins begin to leach back in to your blood vessels, gums and teeth.

Do this on waking in the morning, before breakfast, and before/after bushing your teeth. I do this, after a shower, I take 1 tablespoon and rinse for 4minutes.

You can do it as many times as you want, 3-4times is recommended for tonsillitis, and toxicity crisis.

Listen to your body/subconscious your know how much is enough, plus the colour of the oil changes to a milky white, its full of toxins, so rinse with baking soda to take any remnants out from the mouth/in between teeth/gum.

When the colour change is not as deep, then you have done enough, you can do it 3-4times, 1tables of oil, 4minute rinse, spit out, baking soda rinse, 1 tablespoon oil... etc.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Raw Nut Granola

Makes approx 10 cups

- 1 apple chopped
- 1 ½ cup date paste (I just use some dates soaked in a little boiling water and then whiz in the food processor until a paste is formed)
- ½ cup honey
- 2 T lemon juice
- 1 T vanilla extract (optional)
- 1 t cinnamon
- ½ t salt
- ½ cup sunflower seeds soaked 2 hours or more
- 2 cups almonds soaked 4 hours or more
- 3 cups pecans soaked 2 hours or more
- 1 cup pumpkin seed soaked 2 hours or more
- 1 cup dried cranberries or currants or sultanas

1. In a food processor whiz apple, date paste, honey, lemon juice, vanilla, cinnamon, salt and ½ of sunflower seeds to make paste
2. Transfer to a bowl
3. Add to the food processor, remaining sunflower seeds, almonds, pecans, pumpkin seeds (don’t bother rinsing bowl). Coarsely chop in a few quick pulses
4. Add to bowl with dried fruit
5. Mix well
6. Spread onto baking paper and place in dehydrator at 115 F for 8 hours.
7. Flip the granola over and peel away the paper
8. Dehydrate another 12 hours until crunchy.
9. Break into pieces and once cooled store in the fridge in glass containers.

Note: T = Tablespoon, t = teaspoon

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Balinese Spiced Duck

This is one of my all-time favourite recipes and I wanted to share it with you all as it is so simple and a delight to the taste buds. I got this one off the web - one of the recipe sites, not sure which one.


8 duck portions
50g dessicated coconut
3/4 cup coconut milk
Deep fried onions and salad leaves (I caramelize our onions and we serve the Duck with Steamed or Stir-fried veges).

For the spice paste

6 shallots (I use 12 spring onions)
2 cloves garlic sliced
2.5 cm fresh ginger root pealed and sliced
1 cm galangal peeled and sliced
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1-2 red chillies seeded and sliced
4 macadamias or 8 almonds
1 tsp coriander seeds dry fried


  • Whiz the ingredients for paste in a food processor until a paste forms.
  • Rub over the duck pieces and marinate for 3-4 hours or over night (I often skip the marinating as I forget!)
  • Preheat oven to 140 C.
  • Shake off the paste and mix the coconut milk into it
  • Place duck pieces into a glass baking dish and pour over the sauce
  • Cover and cook for 1 hour (longer if you are using legs and wings - I use breasts with skin on and 1 hour is plenty)
  • Dry fry the dessicated coconut until crisp and brown
  • Remove cover from duck
  • Turn the oven up to 190 C and cook 20-30 mins brown and crispy. I usually leave it longer than this
  • Sprinkle desiccated coconut over meat
  • Serve with caramelized onion and stirfry veges and drizzle with
I often add a tsp of salt and a tablespoon of honey to the sauce at the end to boost its flavour!

Two steps forward and one step back

One thing I am learning on the GAPS diet, is that the journey of healing is not a straight path.

Just when I think I have things figured out and my body is responding in a positive way (ie: my symptoms are less), something new pops its head up to confound me.

This last week I got really excited because I had 3 days in a row that my chronic sore throat didn't bother me. But today it is back again.

I started wracking my brain about what I could have done to cause this. Maybe it is because I stayed up too late last night, or because I didnt take my charcoal tablet yesterday, maybe it was because I visited a neighbour who has a cat inside....

I took some time today to reflect and read some emails on the GAPS list.

As I read I began to realise that this is all a "normal" part of the GAPS healing process AND that sometimes there is NO reason for the reaction other than the body is cleansing and healing.

The theory of the Herxheimer reaction, states that: "The healing crisis will usually bring about past conditions in whatever order the body is capable of handling at that time."

This last week I have had a very strange rash under my bottom lip. Im not usually a rashy person so I was, initially, surprised to see this pop up. Then I remembered that a few years ago an itchy patch under my lip and realised that it was simply a re-tracing of old symptoms and not something I had eaten or been exposed to in the material world.

I am learning to be patient, and not 'awfulize' about my problems.

Friday, September 11, 2009

How to Make a Homeopathic Remedy for Allergies

I havent tried this yet, but I wanted to post it here so I didnt lose it before I had a chance to use it. LOL.

What you will need:

Glass jar with plastic lid
Purified water (preferably reverse osmosis)

Fill jar with ¼ cup water
Put smallest amount of allergen in jar and seal
Sake 200 times
Empty contents.
Fill jar again with ¼ cup water no allergen
Shake 200 times
Fill jar with ¼ cup water again
Shake 200 times
Drink contents

To get results the remedy needs to be taken with a clean mouth which means away from food. If taken around food it should be taken either 15 mins before or you can eat 30 mins after

After taking avoid coffee, chocolate, peppermint (toothpaste) For atleast 12 hours.

Dealing with die-off

This list of suggestions was posted to the Yahoo group recently and I thought I would include them here in case anyone needed them.

-Take activated charcoal capsules, thrice daily. (not within 2 hours of any other supplements as they hinder mineral absorption

- Apple cider vinegar 3tablespoons daily in water

- Epsom salt bath, 1Kg per bath

- Coffee enema, 15-20min retention.

- Cut back on meat/egg, [which are nourishing, but create many toxins in GAPS patients], for the time being, drink freshly squeezed fruit juices - say: apple, celery, carrots, dark green leafy vegetables.

I find if I have an epsom salt bath every day and eat the charcoal I feel a lot better. I also do an enema every few days using about a cup of cabbage rejuvelac to 1 litre of water.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Zucchini "Noodles" with Pesto

Today I made some noodles with pesto sauce for my sons lunch.

I used the Spirooli, that I purchased from the raw store, to make some "spagetti" out of zucchini. Here is the YouTube demo that I got the idea from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dh0r4RU5fQQ

Firstly I chose a nice straight zucchini, as bent ones dont work very well in the Spirooli. Apply very little pressure as you turn the handle or you will end up with very fat pasta, more like hokkein noodles than spagetti. I was aiming for angle hair pasta.

Once the noodles are made fry them up gently with some ghee. I like to add some onion to the pan first and fry that until translucent before adding the noodles.

When the noodles are barely coooked, I add the pesto to the pan and warm it through. I then place it on a plate and sprinkle with cashews. This is absolutely delicious with Salad.

Pesto Recipe (I often multiply this by 4 and freeze some)

1 bunch of basil
1/4 olive oil
large pinch salt
pine nuts or cashews

Process together in a food processor until formed into a paste.

I like the nuts to still be crunchy so I add them at the very end and give them a little whizz through the pesto.

Here is a link on how to make the spagetti with a grater, if you dont have a Spirooli http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SDrfVbsLkZE&feature=related

Home Cured Bacon

As most of you know regular bacon contains all kinds of toxic nitrites that are really not needed for the flavour and wreak havoc on your body, (Im assuming they are added to the meat to preserve it for long periods of time), so for quite some time we have been eating naturally cured bacon.

When we started gaps we found out that bacon was off the food list as it also contains various kinds of sugars. So being a lover of bacon I decide to find out how I could cure my own.

As with all my "how to" searches I started with YouTube (my favourite resource). I watched several videos of people curing bacon and ham in different ways. I didnt want to have the hassle of smoking the meat, as that seemed like too much extra brain power, so I just went for the basic cure and then freeze method.

Once I had seen enough videos to feel confident to give it a go myself I decided on a simple salt rub method.

That came out a little too salty and my teenager complained it had no real bacon flavor. So then I cured it with salt and honey. That made a real difference to the flavor. Although the honey in the meat does make it caramelize and then burn more easily so we have to keep the temperature of the pan on medium.

So here is what I do to make bacon. It's very simple:

I purchase an organic pork belly rinse it and rub honey all over it. Massage it well (this is a very goopy process).

I then sprinkle a generous amount of salt all over every surface and pat it down. I place it in a zip lock bag and make sure all the air is squeezed out before sealing it.

Place the whole think in a baking tray in the fridge and place a chopping board on top of it before adding a weight to that, to help press out all the juices – I usually use 3 kilos of oranges as our fridge is always full of fruit.

Each day I turn it over and replace the weight again.

In 5-7 days it is ready.

To slice it you will need a very sharp knife or a friendly butcher that is willing to slice it for you. (I spend approx $150 every 2-3 weeks at my butcher so he is very helpful and slices it on the deli slicer for me, so all the slices are nice and even).

I layer the bacon between pieces of plastic wrap so I can just pull out a couple at a time. I tried using greese proof paper but it tends to tear as you pull out the slices. Plastic wrap, called "Gladwrap" in Australia, works much better.

For the love of Liver

I used to hate liver.

Just slicing it would cause me to gag. Eating it produced the same effect and I would have to spit it out.

The dogs enjoyed my attempts at various liver recipes. They would go nuts for it.

Then I found some wonderful resourses that explain how to prepare it properly, and now I cant get enough. (And the dogs dont get a look in).

So here is a breif explanation of the benefits of Liver, and some simple ways of preparing it.

This excerpt is from "The Liver Files" on the Weston A Price Foundation website: http://www.westonaprice.org/foodfeatures/liver.html

So what makes liver so wonderful? Quite simply, it contains more nutrients, gram for gram, than any other food. In summary, liver provides:

  • An excellent source of high-quality protein
  • Nature’s most concentrated source of vitamin A
  • All the B vitamins in abundance, particularly vitamin B12
  • One of our best sources of folic acid
  • A highly usable form of iron
  • Trace elements such as copper, zinc and chromium; liver is our best source of copper
  • An unidentified anti-fatigue factor
  • CoQ10, a nutrient that is especially important for cardio-vascular function
  • A good source of purines, nitrogen-containing compounds that serve as precursors for DNA and RNA.
Here is my favourite way of preparing the Liver - again from the Liver Files:

Marinate slices of liver in the fridge overnight in water mixed with a little vinegar or plain lemon juice, plus lots of garlic and bay laurel leaf. After marinating, pat dry and fry in lard and/or butter until well done (really brown on the outside and slightly rose inside). The key is marinating to take away any unpleasant taste.

Once the liver (I use lamb liver) is marinated and patted dry I cook it in one of the two following ways.

1. dip the slices in egg and then dunk in almond meal mixed with a little salt (you can use flour if you are non-gaps). Then gently fry on each side . These little schnitzels are divine. They dont taste like liver at all. I use them as snacks when we are out.

2. saute some diced onion and bacon and when almost cooked add some diced liver and losts of garlic and saute until just cooked. Fry or poach an egg leaving yolk runny for maximum nutrient value, then serve with liver mixture. I like to have this with a little salt and home made tomato sauce. Again this is sooooo delicious. Really it is worth a try!

Be brave and reap the rewards.

How Im making my soup

I have discovered a delicious way of making soup. (Well after 4 weeks of eating it you would imagine that I would stumble upon some sort of discovery!!)

Basically I start with making a huge batch of bone broth from 10 litres of water, 2 full beef necks and 2 marrow bones cut length and cross ways.

I simmer that for about 24 hours and then pick off the meat and scoop out the marrow. I add the marrow back to the broth and reserve the meat. The dogs get the bones (which they leave scattered all over my lawn!!).

I then freeze the broth in batches.

I then get some more meat - lamb chump chops are my favourite, but I also use chicken thighs, lamb bones with a lot of meat still on, beef chops etc.

I saute an onion and some garlic and the meat and water to just cover the meat. Simmer for 3-4 hours until soft. Remove any bones and grizzle. The water will have simmered down quite a bit so I add a nice big dose of bone broth. Maybe a cup or three.

Then I add the veges of choice and simmer - ready for eating in about 30 mins.

I sometimes remove the veges and puree and add back to the soup to thicken. Depending on how much meat was on the second lot of bones I might also add meat from the stock making process. The double batch of meat seems to really enhance the flavour.

I didn't set out to boil two lots of meat, I just found that each batch needed more meat, and often times I was simply adding veges etc to yesterdays batch to make today's soup and I definitely needed more meat.

This soup works really well for me.

Bringing some moderation into my healing journey

One of my dearest friends has moved to Victoria and I have been keeping her updated on my GAPS journey (including all my woes), via email.

A few days ago I recieved this response from her in relation to my ongoing soup consumption and lack of progress (I was continuing to struggle with a chronic sore throat despite sticking to the diet). Alice is also following the GAPS diet. Id been on soup for about 4 weeks and it was seriously effecting my emotional balance. This is what she is referring to when speaking about "4 weeks".

Hi Stephanie, I’m thinking of you. make sure it’s only 4 weeks. It could be die off – but it could also be lacking something else that you’re not getting in the soup. I agree and totally support you. I can see that you want to get it done once and for all and do it right. I’m like that too, so I relate.

So you’ve been having the soup for 4 weeks and you’re going to carry on with it for another 4 weeks??? I don’t know what the yahoo group members suggest, but I reckon even if you still have the sore throat and allergies after another 4 weeks, you should still go onto the next stage.

It might be that your sore throat takes longer to go away, so don’t loose hope if it’s not gone in 4 weeks, there is still a good chance it will go away within the next 2 years of being on the gaps diet.

I say this as I know what it’s like to live with ongoing low level depression – it’s miserable. It also has an obsessive, anxious streak in it, which I think you also suffer with, like me. So it’s good to keep a balance when the obsessiveness is overtaken… in other words carrying on with the soup on and on because you think it is the ultimate….

I know myself and I’ve always liked to do things well and have good attention to detail. So I have to watch myself for heading over the edge of obsessiveness.

It’s a fine balance.

Love Alice

This letter helped me so much.

I was really getting overwhelmed by the diet and as I love to eat, I was really suffering with the lack of variety.

Both broth is very cleansing as well as being immune boosting, so it was probably adding to my die-off symptoms. As of yesterday I decide I needed to follow my own path to healing and while I am still following GAPS guidelines, I am not introducing the foods in the sequence that GAPS suggests, and I am have introduced several foods all at once.

I expected to have a reaction to the foods I introduced but surprisingly I havent. I can only guess that by adding more enjoyment to eating has stopped me craving (and indulging) in foods that I know trigger me (like fruit!).

I have also added more supplements and have started having DAILY epsom salt baths. Both of which I imagine are contributing to my success.

In case you are wondering the epsom salts help to remove toxins from the body, so that die-off symptoms are lessened.

So what am I eating:

I really felt I needed more iron, so I added liver (with onion, eggs and salt cured bacon) for breakfast, and a nice big steak with salad for dinner . I still had soup for lunch and bone broth in the evening as well as 3 glasses of warm water with coconut oil mixed in, throughout the day.

I have also introduced saccharamyces boulardii to kill off the candida, fish oil (Nordic Naturals brand) to help with the depression, and niacin for detox and immune boosting.

So far so good

Stage 2 continued

This week has been a hard week. The die-off is leaving me feeling tired, depressed, anxious, fat, trapped, hopeless, foggy....

Not very pleasant.

Prior to stage 1 I was enjoying cooking and was planning to make cheese and yogurt for my kids. Now I cant be bothered.

I keep reading posts from other GAPSters to keep going and have faith in the program, and I am trying to keep my spirits up, but I am sick of soup and even a mouthful of fruit gives me a sore throat.

I feel like Ive become allergic to everything!

Apparently this is normal. I need to go slow and steady. More slowly than I have been! Just about every day I try to add a new food in the hopes of expanding my dietary repertoire. Obviously this is not working and in fact I wonder if it is slowing my progress?

I have cut back on all dairy. Ghee has not caused me problems in the past however I have cut this out for now as obviously the detox has made me more sensitive.

I have cut out the sauerkraut but I am having a probiotic cabbage rejuvelac drink (basically sauerkraut water without salt). This is from Bee's Candida Diet, recipe is here: http://www.healingnaturallybybee.com/articles/pre1.php

I have ordered the Saccharomyces Boulardii to help kill off the candida, and am starting on the fish oils to combat the depression.

To be honest the only thing keeping me going is the knowledge that people like Baden have had such wonderful success.

Well that is where I am up to. I dont feel up to writing anymore at the moment.

Will post those promised recipes soon

Banana Caramel sticky muffins

So Im posting a few recipes that I have found and tried over the last week, and one that I made up when I needed to use up some left over ingredients.

Ill post them in separate blog entries and that way they will be easier to find under the labels (for future reference).

The first recipe is from Grainfree Foodies- The original recipe is here:(http://grainfreefoodie.blogspot.com/2009/04/banana-caramel-sticky-buns.html)

These girls are kitchen geniuses. I use a lot of their recipes. They call these tasty morsels "buns" I have renamed them muffins as that is what they more closely resemble in my opinion.

I have also tweeked the recipe slightly. We dont eat coconut flour at present as I have heard it is high carb so I subsituted almond meal for the coconut flour.

These muffins are the most delectible GAPS foods I have ever tasted. Not quite like a sticky date pudding but close.

Banana Caramel Sticky Muffins

Ingredients for muffins

1 Large very ripe banana, mashed
6 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup melted butter or coconut oil
1/2 cup honey
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups almond meal
1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 180 C.

Mix all ingredients with a wire whisk.
Pour into a well-greased muffin tin or use silicone liners (I used cupcake papers. They did stick a little bit so you could spray some coconut oil on the papers if you find this an issue)

Ingredients for topping

1 cup chopped crispy pecans (from Nourishing Traditions or WAPF)
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup butter
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 Tablespoon almond meal
2 Tablespoons shredded coconut
Mix all ingredients for topping with a fork.
Crumble topping on buns.

Bake for 20-25 minutes, until cooked through.

GAPS Intro, Stage 2

There is only one word for what I have been experiencing over the last 4 days.... Detox, or as gapsters like to call it Die-off. (Also known as the Herxheimer Reaction)

It is not an enjoyable process, as my dear husband and children will tell you! Basically when the body starts to kill off bad bacteria, and cleanse toxins, it goes into a healing crisis, where all the symptoms that you are trying to overcome by doing this diet come back in greater intensity than normal.

So for me this has meant a week of being very grumpy, critical, depressed, overwhelmed by small things (like a teen trying to show me how many push ups he can do, for the FIFTH time - and all Im thinking is "I dont care let along have time for this, Ive got to make more soup"!).

Well you probably get some understanding of my state of mind! Ive also been tired a lot and had a sore throat on and off even though Im not eating any illegal foods.

It has not been easy but my GAPS support group have been great and it helps to know that this reaction is normal (when I feel like Im going crazy!!).

As the title of this entry states, I have moved onto stage 2. Mainly because I really needed more than just soup. I was always hungry. So I have added, avacado, saurerkraut and ghee. Ive also been drinking copious amounts of ginger tea, and have started really enjoying the flavour of it.

Ive been doing the enema's every other day, and am feeling brave about increasing it to the daily regime. (The next bit of info is for fellow Gapsters who need info on enema's, so family and friends can skip this bit!) Now about enema's - everyone has a different tale to tell, and I have heard that "it feels great", "it is so easy", "I can hold a litre of water a time" etc.... well I havent found them to be particularly easy or great, and I can only hold in about 200-500 mls, before my insides are gurgling and Im crossing my legs and testing my resolve to hold on for a few minutes more.

What I have found that helps is to do a systematic, hold then purge, hold then purge approach over about an hour. This seems to work quite well and I have it on authority from a long term enema user that this is the best way! I can hold a little bit more fluid each time and for a little longer. Still a lot of gurgling and leg crossing but I feel like Im getting the hang of it.

What I have been eating:


Mineral supplement and RO water first thing
Hot water with 1 Tablespoon of Coconut oil
Soup with kraut and ghee


Soup with half an Avacado and kraut
Ginger tea


Two bowls of soup with Avacado, kraut and ghee
More ginger tea
Hot water with coconut oil
Epsom salt bath before bed (1 cup of salts - soak for 20 mins)

Great things about this week:

  • I know my body is responding as it should be
  • I have actually been enjoying the soups
  • Detox baths
  • Im loosing weight
  • My gaps group!

Not so great:

  • Having to cook food for the rest of the family that I cant eat. (When you feel like Im going out of my mind anyway, this can really do you in!!)
  • Having the children remind you what a grump you are being! (Very little sympathy here)
  • Enema's - yuck

Intro - Stage 1

Well I started off on the GAPS Intro diet 4 days ago.

To be honest I havent done very well at sticking to the "soup only" policy and therefore Stage 1 is taking me longer than expected to complete.

The first day I ran out of soup and got hungry after dinner. I munched on a banana and some butter with coconut. The second day I went to a wedding and although I didnt go to the reception David wanted to go via the UNI library on the way home and the whole thing ended up taking such a long time I was starting to feel dizzy from lack of food (I had only had 1 bowl of soup for breakfast), so we stopped at the bakery!!

The third day, I did really well but again ran out of soup and ate some fruit. I also did a lot of baking for Jordan (I started him on the GAPS diet 4 days ago, but he is not doing Stage 1 yet. So I have been very busy in the kitchen trying to keep up with the quantitiy of food that he needs to eat), and it is very hard to bake and not taste the food to see if it turned out ok. All the recipes I am trying are new so I want to know if I should repeat them, chuck them or tweak them to re-use another time.

So here I am on day four, still eating soup!!

Lessons I have learned: Make the next batch of soup when Im still half way through the current batch.

Take soup in a thermos even if only intending to be out for a couple of hours.

Postpone Stage 1 if trying new recipes!!


Having said all that, I am definately seeing some detox results regardless of my adhoc approach. Last night I was extremely nauseas at bed time and even when and got a bucket to put beside the bed. Fortunately there was no need for the bucket during the night.

Today I had soup for breakfast but at lunch time I tried to eat some and felt sick again, so just drank some water.

Tonight I am feeling better and getting my soup ready for tomorrow! As far as the enema situation that I mentioned in the last post - that hasnt happened yet. I thought I would just pop down to the chemist and pick one up, but I ended up needing to order one on the internet!

The enema kit arrived today, so that is on the list for tomorrow. (Dont want to try it before bed!).

The amazing thing so far is the improvement I have seen in Jordan. For as long as I can remember, Jordan has had a constant runny nose and an equally constant (and annoying) habit of picking it. Well, since he started GAPS his nose has stopped running and I havent seen him even scratch his nose let alone pick it!! Whooo hoooo. Im such a happy mumma.

I havent seen any impovement in his acne yet but I am expecting that to improve once his fruit intake is reduced. (He's still eating about a kilo of apples a day - even though that is not part of the GAPS diet!). I need to take baby steps with Jordan so he doesnt completely reject the diet.

Im off to take a detox bath and watch a movie with hubby.

Getting Started

Today I started the GAPS Intro diet. "What is the intro diet and why am I starting it now, after I have been a Gapster for several months?" I hear you ask.

Well basically the Intro diet is a cleansing rundown and I really felt that I needed to get in the swing of the diet before I did the cleanse. It has taken me 9 months of going on and off the diet to finally feel confident in what I am eating.

So why am I on the diet? Well, the full name for the diet is the "Gut and Psychology Syndrome" diet. Its basic premise is that people with unhealthy gut flora often have brain related problems like, autism, schizophrenia, depression, anxiety etc and by removing problem foods from their diet they can restore the natural balance in the gut and stop the gut-brain reactions. (That is a very simplistic explanation it is obviously more complicated than that. Its all very scientific - lots of talk of starch and sugars fermenting in the gut and causing morphine type recations in the brain or something. For more information see the links at the bottom of the page).

I suffer from varying moods, that sometimes feel like they have taken control of me. So when one of my girlfriends suggested the diet I was very interested. The amazing thing is IT ACTUALLY WORKS! Just removing all grains, sugars and starches from my diet and I am a different person. Who knew it could be so easy!

My symptoms weren't just pshychological, I have also struggled with allergies for years, and had ongoing health issues like fatigue, chronic tonsilitis and sinus issues, eczema, hay fever... you get the picture.

So what can I eat? Basically I eat lots of fresh and fremented foods and lots of fat. Meat, veges, fruit, nuts, some legumes, loads of bone broth and sauerkraut and eggs. I eat butter, lard, coconut oil, but no vegetable oils as they mostly hydrogenated. The only exception is cold pressed virgin olive oil.

I usually make pancakes and muffins etc from nut meal instead of grain flour. I can use honey in recipes as it is a monosaccharide, whereas sugar, maple syrup, fructose etc are all polysaccharides and cause a bad reaction.

So back to the Intro diet: Basically the first day is all about soup! It wasnt nearly as hard as I thought it would be.


Breakfast: Reverse Osmosis water with liquid mineral suppliment and lemon juice. Beef and vege soup- stewed all day yesterday and then left on the stove (on low) all day today.

Lunch: more soup with a nice big dollop of ghee.

Dinner: 2 bowls of soup with sauerkraut on top. Snacks: ginger tea

Bedtime: Soak in epsom salt bath (for extra cleansing properties - and it just feels good).

Tomorrow I brave an enema - wish me luck!! ________________________________________________________________ Links

A video with the author, telling how her son was healed of sever autism with the diet.

The book: http://www.amazon.com/Gut-Psychology-Syndrome-Depression-Schizophrenia/dp/B0016J7HZU/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1250164278&sr=1-2

Conditions helped by this diet. http://gapsguide.com/about/conditions-addressed-by-gaps/

A fairly good (and long) explanation of the science behind the diet http://www.sustainlane.com/reviews/the-gaps-diet-the-mother-of-all-diets/LTVKD7QC3RN23RUSRVX2DXV3R98X