DIARY OF A CHEF AT HOME
a collection of holistic nutrition tips & tricks, plus many of Food on the Table's favourite recipes
It's that time of year when the hot heat of the summer shifts to shorter and cooler days. I have to say, this year that shift seemed a bit abrupt to me. September in beautiful Vancouver, BC is usually quite nice, but let me tell you, it's been rather wet! An early start to our "rainy" season I suppose.
Not that I'm complaining, I do love Fall! I just wasn't quite ready to pack in my summer dresses and swap them out for cozy sweaters. But here we are, it's happening and I'm rolling with it. Bring on the soups n' sweaters!
For the month of August I was more intentional about supporting our family's immune health, especially my son, since he returned to school at the start of September. He's in the numbers now, grade one! If you have kids in school, or are a teacher, then you know about that special kind of germ river that flows throughout the schools.
One of my favourite ways to support the immune system is through food, because why not? Food can taste delicious and also be our ally for optimal health. We have a tendency to glorify certain superfoods that come from far away places, while there are SO many that can literally be grown in your backyard. What are some superfoods that are local to where you're currently living?
Let's talk about one of my favourite superfoods, MUSHROOMS! These FUN-GI (bet you haven't heard that before) are so special and unique, they have their very own category.
There are SOOOOO many amazing benefits to consuming edible and medicinal mushrooms but one of my favourites is there incredible ability to communicate with the immune system. Mushrooms are "immuno-modulators". Meaning, they help to bring balance to the immune system, whether it be under-active (prone to infections, colds, low energy) or over-active (auto-immune disease, allergies, asthma). Mushrooms will take on the roll of "teacher", lovingly guiding the immune system to where it needs to be to support optimal health. They're just really smart.
They're also a super-source of anti-inflammatory mojo. Mushrooms contain a diverse range of nutrients that can help bring down unnecessary inflammation. Even in small amounts consumed regularly, they can have an impact on inflammatory response. They're fantastic scavengers of anti-oxidants (which can wreak havoc in the body), and a rich source of anti-microbial medicine which can be beneficial to ward off and prevent infection.
So i say, YAY to MUSHROOMS! I say eat em' up, but please cook them first!! They're a fungus yo!
ALL mushrooms that you'll find in the market have medicinal qualities, so get a variety of them, they all have something unique to offer, whether it be crimini, shiitake, button, portabello...you get me? They're all good, except for the poisonous ones of course. If you plan to harvest in the wilderness, go with a professional that knows what they're doing. You could end up having the trip of your life (which could be great too ;) or be sent to the hospital. Either way, make sure you know what you're doing.
In this mushroom recipe I added turmeric for an added boost of anti-inflammatory goodness. Happy Autumn!
CREAMY MUSHROOM SOUP (DAIRY-FREE)
One of my great joys in life is cooking! As a Registered Holistic Nutritionist (RHN) & food lover I continue to explore the balance between healthy, traditional food preparation and tasty dishes.
Check out my new COOKBOOK! Planting Seeds of Nourishment with over 40 whole-foods based recipes and tons of nutrition info!