Probiotic ginger ale

Being on GAPS, I miss soda—ahem, meaning the “natural” stuff made with cane sugar. When making this refreshing drink for kids, use less ginger. My daughter loves it!

Probiotic ginger ale — makes 3 cups

  • 2 apples or pears, or 2 cups grapes
  • 1-3 inch piece of ginger
  • 1 cup sparkling mineral water
  • 1 cup kombucha (optional)

Juice the fruit and ginger. Combine juice, mineral water and kombucha. If you don’t have kombucha, you can just combine the juice with the mineral water in equal proportion.

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Eggnog

I LOVE nutmeg! If you like it fresh like I do, you can buy bags of nutmeg balls (deshelled) from IMG_0419an Indian food store. I always grate my nutmeg using a fine grater. When I made this eggnog the first time, I got a little carried away and grated more than half a seed of nutmeg. Hours later, I curiously felt slightly stoned. It turns out that nutmeg has a chemical called myristin which does, indeed, cause psychedelic effects. So, use nutmeg sparingly!

Eggnog

  • 3 cups homemade almond milk
  • 2 frozen bananas
  • Sprinkle of nutmeg—start with 1/8 t

Blend milk, bananas and nutmeg.

Almond milk and milkshake

making almond milkI have been making almond milk for many years, and never tire of it! When I drink it, it feels clean in my body, similar to the feeling I get when drinking juice of dark leafy greens. It also serves as a base for milkshakes.

After pureeing the almonds with the water, it is ideal to use a nutbag to separate the almond meal (pureed almonds) from the newly made almond milk. A nutbag is a finely meshed cloth bag. (I’m sure you can find nutbags online). Alternatively, you could use a towel or cheesecloth, which you can buy at the natural food store. Or you can keep the almond meal in the newly pureed almond milk—it just settles to the bottom of the blender. It is ideal to separate out the almond meal for those who have a hard time digesting foods  because the skins are believed to be hard to digest and best removed before consumption.almond milk

Unsweetened Almond Milk—makes 3 cups

  • ½ cup almonds, soaked at least 4 hours but ideally overnight, rinsed
  • 3 cups filtered water
  • 1 t vanilla extract (optional)*

Blend soaked almonds and water. Pour mixture through nutbag or cloth to separate the milk from the almonds. Pour the milk back into the blender, add vanilla and blend.

milkshakeVanilla & cacao almond milkshake—makes 3 cups

My favorite is Cacao Almond Milkshake. Cacao is raw chocolate. You can find the latter at the natural food store. It costs $20 a pound. See this post for more information about eating chocolate/cacao on the GAPS diet. (Interestingly, being on the GAPS diet for some time, I have no craving for chocolate like I used to…).

You can also make nut milk with any other nut or seed, including sunflower, sesame and pumpkin seeds, cashews, pecans and walnuts.

Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, the creator of the GAPS program, has stated that tropical fruits should not be combined with non-tropical fruits or other foods. Thus, this almond milk does not exactly comply with the GAPS diet. However, I am ok with this.

  • 3 cups almond milk
  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 1 t vanilla extract* or 2 T raw cacao powder

Make the almond milk. Blend milk with bananas and vanilla or cacao powder.

* I buy my vanilla extract at the natural food store and the only ingredients are vanilla and bourbon or whiskey so I think it’s ok to use store-bought instead of making my own—but I could be wrong!

“Chai, hot chai!”

Men drink chai from biodegradable clay cups on the street in Calcutta

Men drink chai from biodegradable clay cups on the street in Calcutta

I always loved chai in my pre-GAPS days. Chai is a daily part of Indian life here. It is black tea most often made with just milk and sugar. Living in India, I am surrounded by round-the-clock chai-making—on every block, morning and afternoon chai at my office, chai at meetings, chai at the train station. But being on the GAPS diet, I have to politely decline this delicious concoction of water buffalo milk and white sugar. So I created my own GAPS-friendly chai so I won’t be excluded from the daily joy of partaking in this national custom.

This recipe is based on the raw almond milk I have been drinking for many years before starting the GAPS program. I like to make a double recipe of the concentrate at night, make one batch of chai the next day and the second batch the day after. Like almond milk, the chai should be consumed within 36 hours of making.

You can use your favorite tea—green tea, roibois or maté—or no tea at all, but I prefer black tea because it gives chai its unique taste (and dark color).

Simple chai with just black tea, milk and sugar is delicious, but I prefer to add some spices. Some may call this Masala Chai.

CHAI—makes 4 cupsFeb132013 004

  • 4 Cardamom pods (cracked open or ground in spice grinder for 5-10 seconds)*
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, grated
  • 4 Cloves (optional)
  • 2-inch stick cinnamon (optional)
  • 4 black peppercorns (optional)
  • 4-5 t loose black tea or 4-5 tea bags
  • 2/3 cup almonds, soaked overnight and rinsed
  • raw honey

1. CONCENTRATE

Bring to a boil 2 cups of pure water and add cardamom, ginger, cloves, cinnamon and peppercorns (if using). Lower heat, cover and simmer for 10-20 minutes. Turn off the heat. Add black tea, cover and let sit.

2. ALMOND MILK

Blend 2 cups water with almonds. Pour milk through nutbag or cloth. (You can reserve the almond meal for GAPS baking or pancakes. Look online for recipes!).

After pureeing the almonds with water, it is ideal to use a nutbag to separate the almond meal (pureed almonds) from the newly made almond milk. (I’m sure you can find nutbags online). A nutbag is a finely meshed cloth bag. Alternatively, you could use a towel or cheesecloth, which you can buy at the natural food store. Or you can keep the almond meal in the newly pureed almond milk—it just settles to the bottom of the blender. ItFeb14 009 is ideal to separate out the almond meal for those who have a hard time digesting foods because the skins are believed to be hard to digest and best removed before consumption.

3. PUT IT TOGETHER

Add almond milk to hot concentrate. Gently heat chai to no higher than 120 degrees to preserve its nutrition, or chill in your fridge. Add honey to taste.

* If you don’t have a spice grinder, just break open the cardamom pods by laying the flat side of your knife on top of them and slamming the side of your fist onto the knife (like you would with garlic pods)