Saturday, May 8, 2010

Vegetable Stock

During the last week I have started to settle into my new life at TrueNorth. My days here can be long. We start rounds at 7:15 am and may not finish documentation until after 9 pm. I'm enjoying the food, but miss bread! For those of you monitoring my weight, it really hasn't changed (124.0).

I enjoy living onsite as I get to see how well people are progressing. It's amazing to watch chronic conditions disappear. Admittedly, not everyone sees complete remission of symptoms, but many do. During my short time here I have seen ANA on a lupus patient go from positive to negative!

During their stay patients have access to a large DVD library of health promoting lectures. Various doctors lecture daily and are able to answer questions. There are cooking demos in which people can learn healthy ways to cook.

The cooking demo yesterday is a great example of how living a "green" lifestyle can promote health. Using vegetable stock is a great way to flavor dishes without adding extra sodium. Its a wonderful additional to soups, rice, polenta, etc. You simply replace the water you would normally use with stock.

Vegetable stock is made from kitchen scraps that many people throw away, or hopefully compost. Examples of some scraps are pepper cores, corn cobs, celery tops, and cabbage leaves. Things to leave out because they can make your stock bitter include artichoke, eggplant skin, and the dry outer layers of onions. Vegetable trimmings are placed in a pot which is then filled with water, about 1 inch over the top of the scraps. The pot is then brought to a boil, and then simmered for 30 minutes. The liquid in the pot is the stock! While the pot is simmering you can add whatever herbs you would like.

vegetable stock
Photo credit: wax115 from

In less than one hour you have created cheap healthy vegetable stock! An added benefit to making your own is that you know what is in it. There won't be any vegetables you can't eat, or mystery "natural flavors." Vegetable stock will keep in a fridge for several days, and in a freezer for around 6 months!

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