Warm Bean Dip

This dip is great with fresh veggies, tortilla chips or as a filling for a burrito. Perfect for when fresh tomatoes are available, but canned tomatoes will work well.

Ingredients
1 tbsp. olive oil
2 large cloves garlic, minced
2 jalapeños, seeded and chopped
1/2 cup chopped vidalia onion
2 large tomatoes, chopped or 14 oz can
2 cups Great Northern Bean, or one 14 oz can
1/2 tsp real salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp cumin
6 fresh basil leaves, or 1/2 tsp dried
6 fresh mint leaves or cilantro
2 tbsp. fresh lime juice

Directions

Heat oil in a saucepan over medium low heat (do not let it smoke). Add the tomatoes, onion, jalapeños, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper until very soft (about 8-10 minutes).
Stir in beans and 1/2 cup water.

Simmer for 15 minutes until thickened. Remove from heat and add herbs. Place in a food processor or VitaMix blender and process on low until thick and blended.

Serve warm.                                                                                Julia Rae Parsell

My Daily Drink

My anti-inflammatory daily drink that is….

Most of us know that inflammation is a link to chronic diseases as well as a pre-cursor for poor immunity.  Ginger (Zingiber officinale) root is used as medicine every place it is grown.  Not only is it a powerful anti-inflammatory, but it has strong antibacterial activity against a number of food-borne pathogens, especially:  Shigella, E.coli and Salmonella.  Ginger when added to honey can help decrease the duration of a cold and is effective in reducing coughs.  It is well known to help prevent motion sickness and is helpful during bouts of nausea and vomiting.

Fresh ginger root is my favorite and easy way to decrease inflammation in my body.  This is how I use it:  fresh mineral/spring water, squeezed ginger root topped off with sparkling mineral water if desired.  It’s a bit tingly to the lips and tongue, which is kinda nice, I think.  If this is not to your liking, use less to being with and graduate to more.

How to squeeze fresh ginger root, I discovered this to be best:   Using a cylinder (round) shaped garlic press, cut an inch of ginger to fit in the cylinder.  Press over the drinking glass and then scrape the minced ginger into glass as well.  The water will  be pale yellow and can be consumed immediately.  I like to add more water when I get near empty.  The minced ginger will sink to the bottom and if you like the flavor, it can continue for a few more fill ups during the day.  Sometimes I will add fresh lemon squeezed lemon juice and part of the rind (organic of course).

The ginger water is zingy and if you add sparkling water it tastes especially good and makes it a bit special.                                             Julia Rae Parsell

I am not a medical doctor and this habit is supporting my health and is not an endorsement to cure or prevent any illnessess. 

Super Plant: tastes smoky, like bacon

Tastes like bacon, must be bacon, right?  If it’s bacon yes, but what about if it’s a plant?  Let’s call it a super plant.  Please be introduced to Dulse, a beautiful dark red, flowy plant that lives in tIMG_1066he northern coastal waters of the Pacific and the Atlantic.  And yes, when cooked (roasted), it tastes smoky, a bit like bacon and not fishy.

What makes it super?  It is very high in:  digestive protein, iron, B vitamins, Vitamin. C, iodine, potassium and sodium to name a few.   It has been widely used as food by the maritime Irish and Scots.  It supports your body by strengthening you blood, adrenals and kidneys.  It’s excellent for hormonal support as well as for the lymphatic system and immune system.  It doesn’t stop there, Dulse, as other edible sea plants support the nervous and urinary system.  The fact that it is rich in manganese gives the benefit of activating enzymes, so overall digestion is supported which in turns supports almost every function in the body.

If you like the big words then here is an arsenal for Dulse:  anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anticoagulant, antithrombotic, antiviral and antioxidant.  In other words, it protects your body against harmful inflammation, against cancer, viruses and keeps your blood from clotting.  It has powerful phyto (plant) nutrients that protect your heart and other vital organs.  Some studies have shown (although inconclusively) that the mineral vanadium, present in sea vegetables, may be able to increase our cells’ sensitive to insulin.  Thus, help us prevent over production of glucose by our cells, and help take existing blood sugars and convert them into storable starches.

Dulse can be purchased at your local health food store as packaged fronds and also as dried flakes or powder.  Be sure to use only organic, sustainable sources.
Dulse makes an excellent seasoning in home prepared foods.  It brings a salty taste as well as the smoky bacon flavor.  Rebecca Wood suggests that Dulse be tossed with salted nuts and served with a good microbeer.  She goes on to ask, “Guess which disappears first?”   I believe this is an experiment worth trying.

George Mateljan suggests adding it as a topping on salads, mixed in rice dishes, or added to soups, legumes or vegetable dishes for flavor and nutrition.  It’s especially great on potatoes and corn dishes.  Kids and finicky eaters will enjoy it without them knowing.  Dulse is readily available at organic grocery stores and many health food stores.

Julia R. Parsell

Maybe I especially like dulse because I identify with her.  She’s tenacious, hardly, adaptable, and flourishes even in extreme situations.  And she has a wise woman way of changing her form to adapt to specific micro-environments.  Dulse is a wise woman, a shape-shifter, a bleeding woman, a changing woman, a woman whose friend it is good to be.   – Susun S. Weed,  Healing Wise

www.worldshealthiestfoods.com
Weed, S. Healing Wise. Ash Tree Publishing, 1989