Category Archives: recipes

Swamp Tea Cold Remedy


Remember I mentioned I was sick? I had a chest cold with hard heavy mucus, a super sore throat and I could barely speak. I was exhausted and frustrated I couldn’t cough anything up. Of course, my beloved Fernando went to the store and got me all kinds of Nyquil and other cough syrup expectorants. Guess what? Other than putting me to sleep, none of them worked. Why in my time of need, did I forget I was a medicine woman?

Being as sick as I was, I knew I wouldn’t be able to drive around looking for any fancy herbs. I went back to my herbal class notes and Kami’s new book The Herbal Kitchen (which I HIGHLY recommend) to remember which ingredients I had at home to help me get over this cold.

What did I pick?

Here’s a rundown of my selections.

Honey: It helps stuff taste better and it helps with sore throats. Plus, being anti-bacterial, I needed all the help I could get with killing germs.

Cinnamon: To help break down the mucus and as an expectorant. Also it just tastes and smells good.

Garlic: In Kami’s book, The Herbal Garden, she mentions some thing about garlic that I didn’t remember from class. Garlic boosts the production of white blood cells. If that’s not reason to eat it, drink it, slather yourself in it, I don’t know what is. But beyond that, garlic just helps get rid of colds. And it tastes good.

Cayenne Pepper: Now I know that it’s also like cinnamon, as it helps break down mucus and an expectorant. Plus it just gets your blood moving!

Ginger: My family believes  in the medicinal properties of ginger. If I felt naseaus, my grandpa would give me preserved ginger to suck/chew on. If I had a stomach ache, here came more ginger. Plus, he cooked a lot with it. For me, I don’t care that I don’t know how it works. All I know is that this is a staple in our house. Oh yeah and it tastes good too.

Did you notice a theme about stuff tasting good here?

What I love about this tea, is not only did it kick my cold’s a$$, but really, it’s stuff we all have in our house. And this tea was insanely easy to make. For the most part, I don’t use measurements, but I’ll try and give you approximates.

First, cut off a small piece of ginger and grab a clove of garlic. Dump them both in a pot of water and bring to a boil. I usually let the water boil down a little bit, but you can decide how strong you want this mixture.

While this is boiling, get your other ingredients in the cup.

Generally, I put in enough cinnamon to thickly coat the bottom of my mug.

Then add a dash of cayenne. (Or more if you like)

And lastly, a little honey. In this picture, it’s probably about a teaspoon, but you can add more to your taste.

After you’re done boiling your garlic/ginger water, add it to the cinnamon/cayenne/honey mix.

Now stir, stir, stir! And there you have it. Swampy, murky looking water that tastes almost like real Mexican hot chocolate. This stuff had me up and moving again within a day of drinking it. I started coughing things up, sweating like crazy and within 3 days, I was able to go back to work. I still sounded like crap, and not everything had come out, but I was able to finish a whole day at work without being overly exhausted.

I don’t know why I forgot to make my own medicinal teas at the onset of my cold, but believe you me, it won’t happen again.

P.S. As always, I’m not a doctor and use your own judgement when it comes to your health. But let me know if you try this tea and if it works for you too.




Daniel Fast – Day 2


Day 2 wasn’t that bad actually. Unfortunately, I was still hungry again. I’ve forgotten how to plan meals as a vegetarian to ensure I get enough nutrition.  But hey, any excuse to get to cook is alright by me!

For breakfast yesterday, I had chia seeds mixed with water, almond butter, strawberries, blueberries and raw sunflower seeds. Chia seeds are considered a super food and turn gelatinous when exposed to liquid. My favorite mix is chia seeds, milk, yogurt, berries and honey. But, since I can’t have dairy or honey, this is the next best thing.

Chia seeds prior to mixing them with liquid.

Chia seeds ready to eat!

Lunch was just leftover black eyed peas and lots of fruit. By dinner time, I was pretty hungry, so I decided to make vegetable & tofu curry. I didn’t follow any recipe for curry but just threw stuff together. Here is what I came up with:

Curry Sauce

1 can light coconut milk

Spices: 2 tbsp curry, 1 tsp tumeric, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp coriander, salt & pepper to taste

Curry paste – 2 tbsp

Tomato paste – 2 tbsp (I have tomato paste in a tube, so for me it was 2 squirts)

First, I heated the coconut milk in a small sauce pan. When it began to bubble, I added all the spices, curry paste and tomato paste. I lowered the heat to simmer and stirred until all the spices were assimilated. Once it’s all mixed in, I turned off the heat and got to work on the veggies.

The sauce almost ready to go.

Veggie & Tofu Mix

1 onion chopped roughly

4-5 cloves of garlic

Small organic bag of stir fry veggies

Half a container of tofu (cubed)

Any other left over veggies in the refrigerator (in our house that was 1/2 bell pepper and 3 heads of broccoli)

I began by sauteing the onion, garlic and bell pepper in a little bit of olive oil. Once they became fragrant (meaning you could really smell them throughout the house), I added all the other veggies to the pan. I stir fried them on medium high heat for about 5 minutes and then added the curry sauce and tofu. I turned the heat down to a high simmer and put the cover on. After about 5 minutes, start checking on the vegetables to see if you like the consistency of the vegetables. I let mine simmer for 10 minutes.

Here’s dinner cooking in the pan.

It came out so yummy.

After dinner, I had apples and natural peanut butter for dessert. Mmmmm mmmm good!

Day 3 coming up!




Daniel Fast – Day 1


New Years Day!

I woke up feeling groggy and tired because I’d completely overindulged the night before at a NYE party. Taquitos, chili, chicken wings, prosecco, soda, 7 layer bean dip, peanut butter chocolate pie, chips, etc. The list goes on. It was good going down, but man, it was wreaking havoc on my stomach and brain. It took me forever to get out of bed, but when I finally did, I remembered that today was the first day of my Daniel fast.

Breakfast was very simple. I had a banana and a bowl of Lydia’s Organic Raw Apple Cereal with some unflavored soy milk.

Because it was new years day, I had to make black eyed peas. Eating black eyed peas on new years day is an old southern tradition that is supposed to bring you luck. So, I made a version without any meat. Here’s the recipe:

Black Eyed Peas

1 bag of black eyed peas (16 oz)

1 onion, 1 green bell pepper, 1 stalk of celery, 5 cloves of garlic (chop all 4 ingredients)

1 can of crushed tomatoes (14.5 oz)

Salt & pepper to taste

Hot sauce or cayenne pepper to taste

Olive Oil

Water (about 6 cups, or enough to cover the beans with 1 inch above the beans)

Directions: Soak the beans overnight and then rinse the next morning. In case you forget to soak the beans, you can boil the beans for about 5 minutes, then let them sit for about 2 hours.

Next, saute the chopped veggies (onion, green pepper, celery, garlic) in some olive oil until the onions start to brown. I use medium high heat and usually do this in the stock pot I’m going to cook my beans in. I also add a little salt and pepper to the veggie saute. Once the onions are lightly browned, add in the beans, tomatoes and water and simmer for about an 1 1/2 – 2 hours. My stove gets extremely hot, so for me, I really only had to cook the beans about 1 hour. Add salt, pepper and hot sauce/cayenne to taste. Once the beans are ready, serve over rice.

I served this with garlic rice and they were pretty tasty together. Here is the recipe for brown rice.

Garlic Brown Rice

5 – 10 cloves of garlic (minced or sliced ultra thin)

2 cups of brown rice (dry)


Olive oil

Garlic salt

Saute/fry the garlic and rice together in olive oil for a few minutes or until the garlic gets really fragrant. For me this is generally about 3-4 minutes on medium high heat. Next, add enough water to cover the rice with about an extra 1/2 inch to 1 inch over the top and simmer until the rice is soft. I also add garlic salt when I put the rice on simmer, but you can add it at the end.

The tasty end result

I also had some apples and cherries through out the day. I did get a little hungry but I just kept nibbling at fruit. I kept thinking about the stuff I couldn’t eat which of course, made me want them more. Fernando did have some of my black eyed peas, but still ate mostly normal food. He was kind enough to do it out of my eye sight.

So that was my first day. Day 2’s post is coming soon.