Grain Free Chicken Nuggets
By Monica Ford - realfooddevotee.com
My name is Monica and I am a recovering Chicken Nugget Fiend. Yes, as a youngster, I happily bounced through the golden arches for delicious Chicken Nuggets but, now that I've peered behind the scenes of that culinary process....EEEEEEKS!!! Let's make our own delicious and nutritious version instead.

These are fantastically fun snacks for the kids and serving these with yummy dipping sauces really takes me back! Try this nutrient dense BBQ dipping sauce that you’re gonna love!

Recipe as seen in Wise Traditions Journal (Summer 2015)
Grain Free Chicken Nuggets Ingredients:

• 2 lbs chicken breast*
• 2-3 eggs**
• 1 cup blanched almond flour
• 2 tablespoons arrowroot – I use this one
• 2 tablespoons Pecorino Romano
• 2 tablespoons chopped dehydrated onions
• 1 ½ teaspoon unrefined sea salt
• 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
• 1 teaspoon nutmeg
• ¼ teaspoon cayenne

Grain Free Chicken Method:

• Chop chicken into 2 inch nuggets
• Using a whisk or fork to mix blanched almond flour and all spices in one bowl
• Beat eggs in another bowl
• Submerge a each chicken nugget in egg wash and then dredge in almond flour spice mixture
• Carefully lay each nugget on a parchment lined baking sheet. Do not crowd
• Bake in oven preheated to 400° for 25 minutes or until golden brown

Active Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 15-20 nuggets

Chef's Note:

*You may also use dark meat but I find breast meat gives you the classic chicken nuggets to perfection.
**If you have extra egg whites around, this is a great place to use them.

Nutrient Dense BBQ Dipping Sauce
By Monica Ford - realfooddevotee.com
When I was first seduced by the healing powers of real food, I immediately head over heels. But, as in many relationships, after the honeymoon phase began to give way to a lovely and healthily day to day routine, I admit I missed a few of the convenient and wild indulgences of my previous life.

One of the things I missed was convenience. Yummy little, finger lickin’, convenience treats. I hadn’t yet had the epiphany that we need not live without any dish or treat. That no matter how iconic or convenient the treat, they could all be created with real ingredients and * SHOCKING * could be created in my little ol’ kitchen AND YOURS!

So, it is with great joy that I encourage you to create this lovely dipping sauce in your kitchen. Make a large batch and freeze it in smaller portions so that you are ever ready with a convent treat. We deserve treats and we deserve health!! Pair with these Classic Chicken Nuggets. They just happen to be Grain Free and delicious.

Nutrient Dense BBQ Dipping Sauce Ingredients:


• 1-finely diced white onion
• 1 ½ heads of garlic, shredded
• 3 cups beef bone broth
• ½ cup apple cider vinegar – I like this one
• 2 cups Molasses – I like this one
• ½ teaspoons allspice
• 2 tablespoons celery salt
• 3 cups tomato paste – I like this one
• ¾ cup spicy mustard
• 3 teaspoons horse radish
• 4 cups beef bone broth

Nutrient Dense BBQ Dippng Sauce Method:

• Heat onions & garlic in 4 cups bone broth on medium stove heat
• Turn stove heat down to low
• Add all other ingredients and combine completely by stirring
• All sauce to cook for 45 minutes – 1 hour. Stir occasionally
• At this point, text the thickness of your sauce. If you like the consistency for your purposes, remove it from the heat.
• If you want a thicker sauce continue to cook down with occasional stirring.
• If you want a thinner sauce, add ¼ bone broth or water at a time until you reach the desired consistency.

Active Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 3 Quarts

How to Make Probiotic Grape Soda
By Monica Ford - realfooddevotee.com
Do you want your kids to eat more fermented foods? Sauerkraut not enticing them? Want the life-hack for kid-centric fermented foods your little ones will love? Cultured grape soda seems work on the most stubborn of kiddos. And who can blame them? Grape soda tastes like summer to me! It makes me want to wear tube socks, short shorts and roller skates. This is such a delicious, crisp drink; many who’ve enjoyed it cannot believe it’s organic and full of beneficial bacteria and hydrating electrolytes.

Cultured grape soda also makes a fun mixer for grown-up drinks, like this one. The beneficial bacteria in fermented beverages are said to help to protect the liver during alcohol consumption. AND the hydrating qualities of electrolytes & B vitamins produced during fermentation decrease the likelihood of a hangover – or at least make a hangover less intense.

Any way you choose to enjoy it, this cultured grape soda is so darn good.
Probiotic Grape Soda Ingredients:

• 3 ½ cups organic concord grape juice – I like this one
• ½ cup ginger bug – learn how to make a ginger bug here

Probiotic Grape Soda Method:

1. Brace yourself for how easy this is…
2. If you are juicing grapes for fresh juice, make certain strain any pulp or grit from your juice
3. Strain ½ cup of ginger bug and add to a bowl or container for mixing
4. Add grape juice to strained ginger bug liquid - Mix well
5. Pour mixture into bottles with tightly fitting lids. You’ll need one 32 oz. bottle or a few smaller bottles for fermenting this soda. I like reusing 12 oz. or 16 oz. kombucha bottles or 32 oz. apple cider vinegar bottles.
6. Place a tight lid on the bottles and allow them to ferment out of direct sunlight in a warm or room temperature spot in your home for approximately 12-24 hours.

NOTE: If your home tends to be cool at night, consider getting a seedling heating mat – like this one . I always use a seedling mat because I so enjoy having consistently perfect results.

How to Know When Your Soda is Ready

• Watch for tiny bubbles rising to the top of the bottle and if you are unsure your soda is ready, give the bottle a gentle shake and look for ascension of tiny champagne-like bubbles. That means your soda is ready
• Still unsure? Give the lid a slight twist and listen for a gas release. If there is a hiss, it is ready.

What if I fermented my soda a little too long?

• If there are foaming bubbles visible in the neck of your bottle, your soda is ready and may have been fermented slightly longer than needed. It also means that your soda is likely VERY active. You can give it a little burp over the sink (slight twist of the bottle lid without fully opening). Do NOT open the bottle completely and DO listen for the sound of gas escaping the bottle. If you hear this, your soda is ready to be placed in the fridge.
• Store your soda in the fridge for approximately 4 hours before enjoying.

Active Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 32 ounces
Did you know Monica teaches classes in probiotic soda making and much more? Check out the services page for more info.
Do you make your own grape soda, or another kind? What’s your family’s favorite? Tell us about it in the comments below!

THE SECRET TO CRUNCHY PICKLES (AND RECIPE)!

I know it sounds crazy but I have fermented hundreds of gallons of pickled veggies. I’m a therapeutic chef and I’m focused on ancestral cuisine including fermentation. So, when you use one of my recipes, you can be sure I’ve tested it and made it as foolproof as possible. 

Have you made sauerkraut, chutneys and pickles galore? How were your pickles? Were they crisp and delicious? It’s ok. You can tell me the truth.

One of the most frequent fermentation flops I see are soft or hollow pickles. It’s a shame, because pickles are a classic, fundamental and can be an encouraging way to begin your metamorphosis into a confident, master fermenter.

Science is now showing that fermented foods support the good health of our vital systems. Amazing new findings show a link between balanced gut bacteria and lower incidence of dementia, autistic spectrum disorders, better blood pressure, lower risk of diabetes, efficient digestion and of course, a strong immune system. Want to learn more about this? Check out my favorite book right now Brain Maker . It’s mind-blowing!

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