Deviled Eggs are an easy dish to adapt to a GAPS diet. It's just a matter of making a couple of substitutions. First, if you don't already, source your eggs from local hens that are raised on pasture where they have plenty of room to lead natural chicken lives scratching the ground, eating bugs and grass, and soaking in healthy doses of sunshine. You can ask the farmer about the hens' feed. Is their feed organic? Does it contain soy? If you need help sourcing fresh pastured eggs and other farm fresh foods, check with your local Weston A. Price chapter for this information.
Next substitute the store bought mayo which can contain ingredients such as soybean oil and modified corn starch for either your own homemade mayonnaise made from a pastured egg yolk and a quality EVOO or, for a probiotic boost, substitute the mayo with some kefir, yogurt, or crème fraiche - or a combination of these.
I kept it pretty simple for my last batch mixing a little kefir and a little crème fraiche with the egg yolks along with organic mustard and plenty of salt and pepper. I don't measure, so I just used what I needed to get the filling to a creamy consistency. I also sprinkled the salt and pepper inside the empty egg white and on the backs of the eggs before I filled them because I like flavor in every bite.
You may also want to experiment with other modifications. I like mixing a little avocado in with the yolks and topping with some pretty red sauerkraut as a garnish.
This is just one simple way to increase our probiotic intake and get the most out of the foods we eat. I hope you'll take this concept and apply it to other recipes that you love. And perhaps you'll be sharing some GAPS-friendly probiotic deviled eggs at your next family gathering. I plan to!
In Part Four (Having a New Baby in the GAPS Family) of Gut and Psychology Syndrome, Dr. Natasha describes the process of gently introducing solid foods to babies at around age 4 to 6 months. She recommends starting with Chicken Stock, properly sourced and prepared, of course, as it is particularly gentle on baby's developing digestive system. Chicken Stock is used for the first week of solids in small amounts. Over the second week and the weeks to follow, the servings are increased incrementally as the baby's appetite increases and once it is confirmed that baby can tolerate it well.
I popped in to give a little demonstration of Chicken Stock preparation for a new mom and baby. It was really fun to watch the little one get excited about trying a new food and sweet to see a mom care so much about her baby's nourishment.
To begin, Mom sourced a whole, fully pastured chicken from a local grower and cooked it in a crockpot with filtered water and no salt (no salt because we are not giving salt to baby just yet...but Mom and Dad will liberally salt their meat stock with a high quality mineral salt when they use it for their meals).
When I arrived for this session, I removed the cooked chicken from the crockpot and set it on a large cutting board. I separated the meat into a storage container for later use, separated the bones into a freezer bag to make Bone Broth at a later date, and added the skin and connective tissue back into the crockpot with the liquid where I blended it together with an immersion blender. Very important: We include all the precious fat.
To clarify, we are making Meat (Chicken) Stock which calls for meaty bones with joints, not Bone Broth which calls for boney bones with little meat, so using a whole chicken is ideal for this. Bone Broth is high in glutamic acid which can trigger nervous system symptoms for those with fragile guts. And with a new baby, we want to be extra cautious as we introduce foods as our goal is maximum absorption of nutrients without gut discomfort or damage. Therefore, we use Meat Stock. The gelatin and amino acids in Meat Stock are gentle and healing to a baby's developing gut lining and, unlike Bone Broth, Meat Stock is low in glutamic acid.
Beginning baby's feeding regimen with Meat Stock lays a solid foundation on which a strong body and mind can be built.
We poured the stock into jars and also filled a candy mold so that Mom would have convenient portions at mealtime. We placed the mold in the freezer. After the Meat Stock in the candy mold has frozen, she can pop them out and store them in freezer safe, BPA-free storage bags.
Over the course of the first few days of introducing this new food, Mom can simply warm one or more portions on the stove in a glass measuring cup set in a pot of warm water.
GAPS cooking is economical. Purchasing one chicken yielded over 3 1/2 quarts of nourishing stock that contains no harmful mystery ingredients, bones for later use in making Bone Broth, and approximately four cups of tender chicken, cooked with loving intention, for a casserole or chicken salad.
This mom is taking care of her family!
Next we will discuss fresh pressed Vegetable Juice and then move on to probiotic foods!
Creamy, Spreadable Fermented Cashew Butter
A delicious treat that you'll enjoy on Stage 3 of the GAPS Into Diet is Nut Butter. You can use any nut you desire. I often use Walnuts, Pecans, and Almonds. Here I have taken raw organic cashews that I soaked and then fermented and placed them on parchment paper to dry.
I used this Cashew Butter to make little pancakes by mixing it with cooked, mashed Butternut Squash, Eggs, and Mineral Salt. Soaking and fermenting This satisfied my craving for bread-like foods.
I had a very positive experience on Stage 2. This meal left me with a peaceful stomach and a feeling of having been deeply nourished. I felt like I had been hugged by my lunch."
To demonstrate a GAPS Stage 2 meal, I made a mug of beef stock with a splash of beet kvass, a dollop of yogurt that I long-cultured from raw milk, a raw egg yolk from a pastured hen, mineral salt (don't skimp on this!), and fresh ground pepper.
Remember that when we are doing the GAPS nutritional protocol, we are not counting calories or tracking nutrients. We are eating specific foods that repair the gut lining and repopulate the microbiome as outlined in Dr. Natasha's books. At the same time, we are excluding foods that irritate the gut and feed pathogens. This is not a diet that leaves you hungry. You can eat as much as you like to your satisfaction! Also keep in mind that this is not a weight loss diet per se. If you lose weight it’s likely due to losing the inflammation and becoming more balanced as you lose your cravings for toxins. But our focus is on allowing the gut to heal.
We are simply eliminating foods that offend and irritate the gut, starving pathogens by eliminating their food source, incrementally introducing foods that heal & seal the gut, and repopulating the gut with beneficial bacteria. We do this gently with the goal being a healed gut, however long it takes to achieve that.
I can help you manage this process, show you how to make these foods, and help you source the ingredients.