THE HEALTHY HAPPY KITCHEN
for all blood types by Sue Visser
Lesson1: MAKE SOME EASY AND TASTY ONION AND LEMON MIXES
List of ingredients and timing: Basic ingredients:
2 medium onions, 4 lemons, a small bunch of celery and parsley and 3-8 chillies.
5-10ml herb salt, ½ cup cold pressed sunflower oil or olive oil.
Time: about ½ hour in spare time.
Equipment: sharp knife, chopping board and four lidded storage containers.
Prepare some sensational food enhancers in your spare time and enjoy them with all your meals and snacks. Keep them in airtight containers to enjoy at short notice. Known as healing foods, they can be enjoyed every day instead of junk foods. Do away with preservatives and artificial chemical additives. Chuck out the fattening chips and white rolls, greasy fries and boring cardboard biscuits. Give your taste buds a treat and start chopping!
1: ONION, PARSLEY AND CELERY CHOP
Work on newspaper and wrap up the skins, etc. to prevent a mess. Peel the onions. If they burn your eyes, light a candle and there will be no more tears! Chop them finely. Then wash the bunches of celery and parsley and chop them very fine. Mix all together and seal in a plastic container. Keep this mixture in the fridge for whenever you need to kick-start a stir-fry, an omelette, a quick soup, casserole or make a salad. Use it to add to dips and sauces made with your hand-held blender. You will be amazed at how much time this simple task saves you during a busy week.
VARIATIONS: add chopped red, yellow and green peppers to the basic mixture. You can also use leeks or spring onions and garlic chives. Add freshly chopped herbs or ginger. It is best not to include garlic as it gets very smelly. Always peel and chop your garlic fresh, for every meal. Add it to the cold pan before you start cooking. A quick dip or side dish: Add some of this onion mix to a can of baked beans with a little oil, soya sauce and lemon juice to make a super party dip or side dish. Dip with apple and carrot slices or wrap it in lettuce leaves. Instead of potato crisps, cut thin slices of rye bread and crisp them up in the oven. People really enjoy these tummy fillers.
2: MOROCCAN LEMON PRESERVE
This idea comes from Morocco, but here is a nifty short cut! Slice 2 lemons downwards into quarters. Remove the tough centre core and pips. Now cut across into little fans. Coat the lemons generously with herb salt and pack into an airtight container. It’s that simple! This lemon preserve keeps well for at a week or two in the fridge and you can add it to just about any dish. I snack on it when I get the munchies. Any naturopath will tell you that we need to eat whole lemons to really benefit from all the healing qualities this amazing fruit contains, especially the vitamin K that lurks in the white pith. I am totally hooked on this pickle. It goes well with curries, fish, and spinach. It is a wonderful garnish for anchovy toast or fancy open sandwiches or savoury crackers. Try it with tuna salad, hard boiled eggs, avocado, cottage cheese or peanut butter!
VARIATIONS: Use fresh limes instead of lemons, if you can get them. Add freshly grated ginger and a little honey. Try chopped chives and ground-up mustard seeds. Add a naartjie to make a colour variation and a lime or two.
3: LEMON AND CHILLI RELISH
Cut the other 2 lemons in thick strips, downward, around the central part. With this relish, the lemons are quite tart, so you need less of the juicy centre. Now slice the peel into thin crescents and coat them in herb salt.
For the chilli buffs, take your chillies and slice them very thinly. Combine the salted lemon with the chillies in a seal able container and add the ½ cup of oil. It can be added to cooked vegetables or a fancy salad to add that special zing. This relish is great to eat on buttered rye bread – I can’t leave it alone, so obviously it must be doing some good. Beginner chilli eaters will find that the oil reduces the burn factor. If you are not into bread, use cos lettuce. Spread on a little avocado, feta cheese, chopped radish, etc and top up with the lemon and chilli relish before you fold over the edges and devour! The oil can also be poured onto food or salads separately for a little extra kick.
HEALTH ADVANTAGES: Chillies help to relieve mucous problems and blocked sinuses as they work like a good expectorant. No wonder, they also contain guaiphenesin, like the patent drugs do. Chillies also boost the immune system, let alone the libido. Anybody for a chilli kiss? Blood type A should not overdo the chillies and I have found that most A’s are instinctively not too fond of chillies. They should stick with the milder varieties and stay away from Thai chillies, bird’s eye, cherry bomb and other super hot varieties. For real softies, stick with red peppers or peppadews, just to add a little colour without the heat. Avoid habanero chillies as they are unpleasantly hot and are dangerous to keep near small children who may be attracted to them.
VARIATIONS: Use the hearts of the lemons to make lemon juice or toss them into the blender when next you make fruit or veggie juice or a dip. Try making this relish with limes and add curry powder, cumin seeds, coriander, etc. to make a spicy lime pickle.
4: GENERAL RELISH
Take some of the onion mixture and combine it with a little of the chilli relish, finely chopped. Add a little more oil. This relish makes a lovely instant topping to a salad or plate of boring veggies. Sprinkle over some cider vinegar or lemon juice just before serving. You can also add chopped raisins to make an instant chutney to go with a curry. This mixture can be zapped in a hand-held blender to make a smooth paste. Enjoy it with peanut butter or cottage cheese on a boring rice cake or a slice or rye bread. They say that raw onions and raisins are very healing when eaten together, so enjoy your medicine!
VARIATIONS: Add chopped gherkin, radish or capers to the basic relish mixture. Lovely with tuna, fried fish or chicken. Vegetarians can enjoy it with slices of tofu, coated in rice flour and fried in a smear of olive oil.