Wonderful Wild Garlic

Worth Knowing:
In the past several years, wild garlic has become increasingly popular again. Not only does this vegetable have a great flavor but it is also has a plethora of preventative properties.

Its long-stemmed young leaves are harvested between March and May and can be used in various culinary treats. As aromatic as garlic, wild garlic has a decisive advantage over its fragrance-intensive relative. Unlike “normal” bulb garlic, wild garlic isn’t quite as pungent and can therefore be consumed without worrying about who you are chatting with afterwards!

The delicate greens of wild garlic also have amazing health benefits. When eaten regularly this plant can:

  • have cleansing and detoxifying effects
  • help restore the balance of healthy gut bacteria and protect against Candida albicans infections
  • ease digestive issues such as diarrhea and constipation
  • improve blood pressure and cholesterol levels
  • support cardiovascular health and protect against arteriosclerosis
  • help with skin and hair problems

Try this delicious and nutritious vegetable in a salsa verde, pasta dish, or soup!

If you are interested in learning more explore the links below!

Medicinal Plants – good to know!

Self-treatment with herbs and medicinal plants, especially in the flu and cold season, is becoming increasingly common. If you like using herbs and alternative remedies without the guidance of a specialist, please be aware of the following:

  • Medicinal plants may be suitable for the prevention of minor complaints such as coughs and colds and for the early treatment of an illness. 
  • In the case of chronic illnesses, you should always discuss alternative treatment with your health care provider. 
  • If the cause of the complaints or your symptoms are unclear, you should always consult a health care provider. 
  • If there is little or no improvement of symptoms after three days of self-treatment or if your condition worsens, you should definitely consult a health care provider. 
  • Be extremely careful where you purchase or collect medicinal plants and herbs. When collecting your own herbs or plants, always carry appropriate literature with you to check the location, color, shape and flowers of a plant. This will reduce the risk of mistakes or confusion with poisonous plants.

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Eggplant – good to know!

Did you know that the eggplant originates from East India? In the 16th century eggplants came via Egypt and North Africa to Europe – in the Americas it made its way via Brazil at the same time. Nowadays it is loved in the northern European as well as northern American kitchen. Eggplant itself is rich in carotene, vitamins B1, B2, B3 and calcium, phosphorus, iron, copper, magnesium and potassium. It also contains bitter compounds that have a stimulating effect on all digestive organs. When cooked without spices they have an incredible mild non-descriptive taste so to enjoy eggplant at it’s best, it’s important to season well and enhance the taste with delicious spices. Traditionally basil, chives, marjoram, mint and oregano goes well with eggplant but really eggplant is delicious with any of your favorite spices! Tomorrow we bring you a yummy recipe right here – stay tuned.

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Vitamins …

… are vital substances that the body cannot produce on its own. Therefore one needs to eat a healthy and varied diet so that they are constantly provided. Different vitamins have specific functions in the body. For example, they influence the conversion of food into energy, the building of body cells, supporting the immune system, the formation of hormones, the detoxification of the body and the support of enzymes. Vitamins E, D, K and A are fat-soluble vitamins. All other vitamins are water soluble.

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We all know that coffee is allowed with Metabolic Balance but it’s only allowed during the meal and without milk – thus, black! Now, did you know that if you have milk on your food list, you could enjoy milk with your coffee? But only with the meal you use milk as your protein. To do so is perfectly fine – and according to our strategies of success – if you use a portion of your allotted amount of milk. This way you could enjoy a cappuccino, a latte or café au lait with breakfast! Remember, since you can’t mix proteins, milk in coffee is only allowed if milk is your protein for that meal.

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Food Additives – edible or not?

When a food additive has been officially checked and authorized to be added to food, in Europe it’s given an E number. The “E” before the number is used in the European Union (EU) and the system is intended to help consumers throughout Europe to check food labels even if they do not speak the language of the country the food comes from. This system is also used in other countries outside of Europe, including e.g., Russia, Australia, South Africa, Israel. It’s a myth that “E” stands for “edible”! In North America you can increasingly find also numbers on a food label to replace the name of a food additive – however, this is still rare.

Many health conscious people prefer food without food additives. However, it’s vital to know that if no additives are listed on the label, you can’t always be sure that there were no additives used in the manufacturing process. The legal requirement is that a food manufacturer only must list additives that technically change the end product. This means that in the manufacturing process, additives may be used at some point but don’t necessarily need to be listed if they aren’t recognizable in the finished product. An example is magnesium stearate in cocoa powder, which ensures that the cocoa is still free-flowing. In a finished cocoa drink, this additive no longer has any effect and so it’s often not listed on the label.

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Winter Salad with Yogurt Dressing

Radicchio, Lollo Rosso, Romaine and the likes are the classic winter salads. Right now you can buy them easily – whether at the farmer’s market, at the local health food store or in the supermarket. What is special about these winter salads is their high content of bitter substances, which are not only super healthy, but also fantastically counteract cravings for sweets. Good to eat them more often! They taste especially good with a yogurt dressing.

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How to Use Lavender

Are you ready for something a bit different? We love the use of lavender in the kitchen!

The famed French aromatic spice ‘Herbs de Provence’ has at its heart lavender and without lavender it simply wouldn’t be the same. Combined with the other herbs growing wild in Provence, such as thyme, rosemary, oregano, marjoram and savory, lavender gives a very special addition to so many vegetable and meat dishes. We love lavender added to sheep’s cheese when marinated in oil. MB 02-03 - Lavendel

Even award-winning cuisine has discovered the use of lavender in lamb dishes or desserts getting a slightly tart flavor from the delicate flowers. 

We suggest you try a lavender vinegar for crisp summer salads. Simply add a handful of lavender flowers to 750 ml white wine vinegar and leave in a cool, dark place for about two weeks. You can then strain the vinegar and pour into smaller, dark colored bottles.

Delicious!

Tofu – the Protein Source for Vegetarians and Vegans

Tofu is not only an excellent versatile food it’s a very interesting one too. The soft, milk-colored tofu is also known as Asia’s cheese. It’s produced by processing cooked soybeans. The milk-like liquid obtained is thickened by a mineral coagulant (calcium sulfate) to create Tofu. Nutritionally, tofu contains great levels of protein, only few saturated fatty acids and no cholesterol. It’s naturally gluten-free and therefore suitable for individuals with celiacs disease. It’s often a natural choice for vegans however it’s important to point out that tofu doesn’t contain any vitamin B12 which is vital to include as an additional supplement when following a strict vegan diet.

Tofu is a real “quick change artist” in the kitchen – meaning, it can be prepared in many different ways and is one of the most multi-purpose proteins available. In its natural state, Tofu has very little taste of its own and so easily takes on the flavors and aromas of other ingredients with which it’s prepared. It can be used with stir-fries, soups, vegetable dishes and even as a dessert.

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What about Frozen Food?

One of the more common questions we get is about frozen foods. Can I use frozen meat, fish, vegetable or fruit? And how much should I have when it’s frozen? 

First, yes you can use frozen foods, as long as they contain no additives, fats or sauces – simply the pure food. We’ve seen, for example, commercial frozen fruit with added sugar. This would definitely not be allowed. So if you’re buying frozen foods, always check the label. If it’s a whole food that has been frozen soon after harvesting or preparing or one you have frozen it yourself, then it’s fine. With regards to quantities this is very simple. The amount of frozen fruit and frozen vegetables is exactly the same as allotted on your plan. When weighing frozen proteins such as fish, meat or seafood, you should always have an extra 25g more than listed in your plan, as there is a loss of water during thawing. For example: if you have 125g fish listed on your plan then you will need to have 150g of frozen fish.

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