Last night's dinner was an adventure. I had a meeting with a client in the morning, and she served me some of the best beef tacos I have ever had for lunch. That put me in a fish frame of mind for dinner. Since I have resolved to try at least one new recipe a week this year, I began looking for something new I could do with cod. I found a lovely recipe, but when I went to get the cod out of the freezer, I was out. How did I let myself run out of something so basic? I was also out of salmon. The only fish in the house was canned tuna, and I was not in the mood to try a new tuna recipe.
I took out a pound of frozen ground turkey and a package of frozen vegetables. I could whip up a couple of quick vegetable bowls. It was far short of my expectations, but it would be healthy for HH and me. As I cut open the vegetable package, I noticed a box that said "serving suggestions". It said to top the vegetables with Teriyaki sauce. I realized that I had eaten Teriyaki flavored beef jerky, but I didn't have a clue what was in Teriyaki sauce.
On my computer, I called up the BTD recipe center, and there were two compliant Teriyaki sauce recipes. I combined them, because I didn't have the precise ingredients for either one. Here is what I did.
1/4 cup agave
5 Tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons of ginger juice (I ran fresh ginger through my juicer)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder.
First I started brown rice in the rice cooker. I warmed the Teriyaki ingredients in a saucepan while I browned the turkey. I added 2 Tablespoons of oil to the skillet where the turkey was cooking and turned up the heat to stir fry the frozen vegetables. I was watching the Teriyaki sauce to make sure it didn't boil. As soon as the vegetables were barely soft, I poured the sauce over them and the turkey. I called HH to dinner.
He took one bite and said, "This is really good."
Teriyaki turkey, where have you been all my life?
Later this year I will celebrate my 10th year on the Blood Type Diet. Before the BTD I continually battled allergies. Nine months of the year I had post nasal drip. More mornings than not I woke with a scratchy throat. Certain foods gave me hives, and I sometimes had hives for no apparent reason.
I can't say I noticed a dramatic change in my allergies when I first started the BTD, but within a year I realized I was taking fewer antihistamines. I itched less, had fewer sore throats, bought less Kleenex. I eventually tried chocolate - a beneficial type O food, but one that had given me hives since I was a little child. No hives! I often treat myself to a square of unsweetened dark chocolate. You can't imagine how good that is unless allergies had prevented even a taste of chocolate for 30 years.
Last week I had an allergy attack. I know what precipitated it. Friday after Christmas I spent almost two hours mowing the grass on the back part of our lot. It has been really dry, so the lawn mower kicked up lots of dust. The grass needed to be mowed because it went to seed late this year, due to the drought. The mulcher was flinging seeds and dry stalks everywhere. The cedar trees were pollenating. We have very few cedars on our property, but they are prominent in the Hill Country and the pollen count was high.
By 8:00 that night my throat was hurting. At first was impossible to tell whether it was a cold, the flu, or allergies. I took both antihistamines and cold-eze that night. By the next night, when I had no fever and the symptoms returned as the antihistamines wore off; I was confident that this was allergies.
I added bromelain and stinging nettle from the BTD Encyclopedia allergy protocol and Vitamin C because it is good for so many things related to the immune system
My procedure for antihistamines is don't worry about the clock. Take the next dose when symptoms start to return. For six days I knew precisely when the previous dose was wearing off. Friday morning slipped by without my noticing the time. I've been off them now for more than two days with just a hint of drainage
What I'm now asking myself is "Why?" after so many years, why the return of allergies now?
Adelle Davis wrote that allergies are stress diseases. I think this may be the key. November and December were stressful. I didn't get enough sleep. I worried about things I couldn't control. I think my adrenal glands were tired and left me vulnerable to environmental factors that hadn't bothered me for several years
I have been in a rut. When I was a bride I was a, resourceful cook. When I was a mother, I was a creative cook. When I started the BTD, I was an experimental cook. But since DD left home, I've cooked the same things over and over. It's healthy. It's BTD compliant. But it's getting boring.
So my one New Year's Resolution is to try at least two new recipes a week. I'm off to a good start, because I tried two recipes today.
The morning of New Year's Eve, I started soaking a pound of black eyed peas. The evening of New Year's Eve, I was getting them ready for the slow cooker when I realized I was out of onion. I always cook black eyed peas with onion.
Don't panic, I told myself. How do most people cook black eyed peas? The answer is with bacon or salt pork. Obviously I was not going to do that...but I had a package of Buddy's chicken sausage in the freezer. If you are not familiar with Buddy's, it is a company that sells hormone free chicken. Their sausage is free of nitrites and other preservatives. I put the frozen sausage in the slow cooker with the beans and 2 cloves of garlic. Served with a spinach salad, it was a perfect New Year's Day lunch.
For dinner, I was going to cook beets. Normally I season beats with ghee, ginger, agave. It is delicious. But remembering my resolution to get out of my rut - even if it is a delicious rut - I got out a German cookbook that I've had for years, but never used. There was a recipe for beets with orange sauce. Orange is avoid for both Type As and Type Os. I decided to substitute pineapple juice for the orange juice. The recipe called for cornstarch, but that is also avoid. I kept it simple tossing the cooked beets with a Tablespoon of ghee and a heaping Tablespoon of pineapple juice concentrate.
HH was watching football and I was reading during dinner. As he took his plate to the kitchen, he said, "That was a really good dinner." I'm not sure that it was all that good, but it was different. The fact that he noticed, reinforces my resolution.
As we drove home on a cold and blustery Christmas day, we stopped at a Subway sandwich shop for lunch. We were fortunate to find a place that was open. Most restaurants were giving their employees family time for Christmas. This Subway was inside a gas station, and I hope the employees who served us got a good Christmas bonus!
I had packed salmon, peas and carrots for my lunch. While my husband and son ordered their sandwiches I indifferently read the menu. I had no intention of ordering anything, until I saw chicken livers among the choices at the kiosk next to Subway.
I never ate liver as a child. I'm not sure whether my mother didn't cook it because she didn't like it or because she knew that I was such a picky eater that there was no chance I would get beyond the first bite. When I read my first book on nutrition (Let's Eat Right to Keep Fit) the author was very enthusiastic about liver. I learned that I liked liver in restaurants where it was a featured item. However, the liver I cooked at home was not very good.
I also learned that I like chicken liver better than beef liver, and my absolute favorite - before the BTD - was chicken fried chicken livers.
On Christmas Day, I approached the counter debating whether eating a little batter would be worth it to get the livers. Then I saw a tub of flour by the fryer. These was not a pre-processed, pre-battered food product. They made the livers fresh on site.
I had a brainstorm. I asked if they could fry some livers without batter. The poor server who was stuck working Christmas Day, looked at me like I was crazy. "Are you sure you want me to do that?" she asked. When I said yes she took my money. The livers were delicious. The oil made them slightly crisp on the outside, but there was no wheat.
I'm thinking I could do this at home. I have a mini fryer that I got as a wedding gift long ago. I haven't used it in years because oven frying is so much healthier. But if I used grape seed oil it might work.
Where did the tradition to have ham for Christmas dinner come from? We are celebrating the birth of Jesus - a Jew who never would have eaten pork in his life. Lamb would be appropriate, or fish. My sister's family likes steak for Christmas dinner. The Honey Baked Ham Company and other pork purveyors have certainly come up with a Christmas marketing coup.
For me personally, ham has always given me headaches. I remember as a little girl, being sick after eating ham. I liked the taste, but it did not agree with me. I do not see the point of eating pork ribs. They appear to be mostly fat and gristle. The sauce is good, but I'd rather have sauce on chicken or brisket, which is better quality meat. Pork chops were always to dry too be enjoyable. However, before the BTD, I really did like pork tenderloin.
There are two aspects to my decision about whether or not to eat pork - the religious and the nutritious. The Old Testament is pretty adamant about not eating pork. But the New Testament declares that all food made by God is allowable. So as a Christian, there is no religious requirement for me about eating or not eating pork. However, there was a lot of wisdom in the dietary laws given by God to the Jews in the Old Testament. For instance the rules about washing hands and utensils protected the Jews from the Black Plague in the 14th century. The prohibition against pork protected the Jews from parasites that were common in pork until the past 100 years.
From the nutritious standpoint, Dr. D says that pork is avoid for all types. When Dr. D and the Bible agree, that is good enough for me. I consider pork to be a double avoid.
Our Christmas dinner was a buffet at HH's Mom's house. His sisters had decided on ham and pork ribs. I didn't want to be contrary, but I wanted another option. I brought some deli sliced turkey. I rolled the turkey around fresh spinach and sliced it in one inch bites. I said they were turkey appetizers. At the end of the meal the platter was almost empty.
I found plenty of neutral and beneficial choices. There were sweet potatoes and baked beans. DD made pineapple cranberry sauce. She also made a pumpkin soufflé in a pie pan and called it crustless pumpkin pie. The only avoid I ate was a salad brought by one of our nieces. It was made with fresh grapes and walnuts tossed in a little dressing made from light cream cheese and light sour cream. I think at home I could do a dressing with almond milk custard that would make this delicious salad completely compliant.