Category Archives: green products

Einkorn Flour

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Einkorn Flour

Einkorn Flour

I recently read Wheat Belly by William David MD . I had no idea how far modern wheat has come from its ancestors. I won’t go into detail here, but suffice it to say “VERY FAR INDEED!!” Modern wheat has a protein in its gluten called gliadin. Gliadin acts as an opiate. It is addictive, causes craving for more and more of it, and, it stimulates appetite.

Now I am sceptical about most things I read. In this day and age, you have to be. You can’t believe everything you read. Nor do I. But I have actually experienced this wheat phenomenon myself: I have noticed (and always found it curious) that when I had cereal or toast for breakfast I was starving again within a short amount of time.  When I ate food with wheat in it, I craved more and more. All day long. Whereas on days when I didn’t have wheat, I didn’t crave carbs all day – or much of anything else for that matter.

There’s a lot of controversy on Dr Davis’s assessment of wheat (and other grains). But having witnessed first hand – and more importantly having done so before I read (or had even heard of) the book, I am inclined to say that I found much of what he has written regarding wheat being an appetite stimulant, TRUE.  A brief synopsis of his opinion on wheat can be found here.

Remember a while back when I did a raw food cleansing diet? Bread, crackers, cereal, etc., aren’t “raw” so I didn’t eat any. Much of my surprise (although I didn’t attribute it to wheat at the time) I had no cravings, no hunger pangs, and I was able to follow the raw food diet with practically no difficulty. I didn’t feel deprived, I didn’t feel hungry and I had only a brief craving for bread!! My body was “withdrawing” from that addiction!

I don’t want (or fortunately need) to live without wheat due to gluten intolerance. I want to eat the occasional slice of bread, pizza, pasta, etc. I started researching and have found einkorn. Woohoo!!! Einkorn is man’s first form of cultivated wheat, grown by farmers more than 10,000 years ago. Compared to modern wheat, it is healthier*, a natural unadulterated product – and very tasty!

 

Where to Find Einkorn in the UK?

I live in the United Kingdom (England to be exact) and get my einkorn flour from Doves Farm. They also sell kamut and spelt flours (which I bought but haven’t tested on my gut yet!), various gluten free flours, etc. I had never heard of einkorn flour until I read “Wheat Belly”. We have switched to einkorn flour (in lieu of no flour at all as Wheat Belly recommends) as we just can’t live (happily) without bread.

When we eat baked goods (or pizza crust) made with einkorn it has no adverse effects. We don’t feel stuffed and we don’t get bloated and we don’t feel sick! Neither of us is gluten intolerant (celiac disease) – at least not that we know of! But we are both definitely gluten sensitive as after cutting out regular flour and then “slipping” a couple of times when dining out, we both felt very ill and wiped out afterwards. In fact the last time we ate out and indulged in a couple of slices of bread we were both sick for the day – headaches, exhausted, stomach rumblings, just generally feeling bloated and ill all over. It was the only food item we both ate. So don’t go there 😉

We are headed to Italy in September and despite it being the land of pasta, if we can’t find einkorn or emmer pasta, we’ll be ordering pasta free meals:  the last regular wheat foray finished us both for good!

Happy Baking everyone! I have just begun to experiment with this lovely product and will be posting recipes as I go!

 

Where to Find Einkorn in Canada or the USA.

 As many of us work towards eating better and living closer to what nature intended, the demand for good natural products will increase. If you live in Canada you can source einkorn flour from Prime Grains and if you live in the USA you can get it from growseed.org or from Jovial Foods. If you grind your own wheat berries into flour, you can source it einkorn.com or from Jovial Foods. Jovial also sells einkorn pasta which I am unable to source here in the UK – if you know of anywhere to get it in the UK please PLEASE let me know!

 

*Einkorn’s Nutritional Value

Einkorn contains higher levels of protein, essential fatty acids, phosphorous, potassium, pyridoxine (B6), lutein and beta-carotene (lutein).

The Einkorn flour is characterized by high protein, high ash, a very high carotene content, and small flour particle size when compared to the modern bread wheats.

It also has plenty of carotenoids – the natural red, yellow or orange pigments that are found in many vegetables and fruits, and in a few grains. Carotenoids have the medical properties that help in preventing serious diseases such as cancer.

 


   einkorn bread recipe imperialeinkorn bread recipe

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Recycling Kitchen Grey Water

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I have been interested in the subject of grey water ever since I had a water meter installed in 2009. After  extensive research on the subject, I have installed a WaterTwo water diverter valve to collect my kitchen grey water.

Most people harvesting grey water install the valve to recycle their bathroom (shower & hand basin) or laundry grey water. And indeed that is where the manufacturer’s website recommends installing it. So there’s my disclaimer on their behalf. But as indicated, I did plenty of research on kitchen grey water and decided I would start my foray into grey water in the kitchen. The kitchen is where I use the most water and where I feel I have the best control over what is in the water being recycled.

Why kitchen grey water?  I am a fastidious washer and rinser of fresh produce and for me, the kitchen greywater was a better option than bathroom shower and basin water. I also think it is a heck of a lot cleaner than my recycled laundry water!

Having said that, I will advise that  using  grey water requires caution – and re-using kitchen grey water requires particular forethought.  If you are a cook that does a lot of greasy cooking or uses harsh chemicals, it is definitely not recommended. If you are someone like myself, however, who doesn’t fry things and uses only organic bio-degradeable washing liquid and vegetable wash, then you could easily harvest your kitchen grey water to reuse in watering your plants and garden. Grey water should not be used on vegetables that are eaten raw (e.g. lettuce) and due to possible pathogens, all grey water should always be dispersed onto the soil, not onto the plants themselves. Never use greywater that has been used to wash meat or fish, nor when you have cleaned your sink using anything other than a good organic biodegradeable cleaner.

Use Bio-degradeable Cleaners

The three products that I use are Nature Clean’s Fruit & Veggie Wash (a Canadian product), EcoVer dish detergent, and Shaklee’s H2O cleaner.

How I installed the kitchen grey water diverter valve

After a lot of thought I decided to install the diverter valve on only one sink. This allows me to pick and choose which greywater ends up in the water butt. Basically I reuse water that has been used to rinse fruit and vegetables, dish water from very lightly soiled dishes, and the water that runs down the drain as we wait for the water to get cold for drinking, run off when filling and emptying the kettle, etc. – in other words, nothing that is very dirty or greasy. Many people do use more soiled water with great results, but I am new at this, am taking it slow and currently do not.

The diverter valve is installed on the small centre sink:

When the valve is open the water drains into the water butt (via the green hose), and when closed the water drains down the regular drain and back into the council system.

Here’s what it looks like under the sink. The white gunk is just silicone to ensure a tight seal.

Filtering the water

I  use a homemade three-filter system – a big plastic strainer to catch the big bits (which are then popped into my compost)

a smaller wire mesh thingy that sits on the drain hole

and a fine mesh that covers the end of the pipe (it is actually made from old pantyhose).

Do you wash dishes in that tiny middle sink?

No. I use a plastic dishpan in one of the bigger sinks, and provided the water doesn’t look too nasty, I pour it into the centre to be recycled.

More information / links on grey water

  • Using grey water
  • If installing a grey water diverter valve in the kitchen you should a) plan to use the water pretty much right away and b) have a mesh bag over the end of the exit hose to filter any tiny food bits. Most kitchen grey water users that I have encountered run a hosepipe out to the garden, where the water is immediated dispersed onto vegetation. At the bottom of the page is a video showing someone else’s drainage system:You CAN get away with storing well-filtered grey water by adding household bleach to the water butt, but using it immediately is the safest route to go. If you go that route (storage) you will need to research the ratio of bleach to be added per litre or water. Google is your friend 😉
  • Collecting, storing, re-using grey water
  • The WaterTwo Diverter Valve website
  • And finally, this is an example of how others have created a direct kitchen grey water drainage system:
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Growing Herbs on Windowsills

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As I haven’t got my garden up and running yet, I’ve been buying the “living herbs” in pots at the grocery store. You know what I don’t understand? Why do they refrigerate these plants? Assuming that plants grow best with proper sunlight (a.k.a. HEAT) in warm temperatures, I don’t get why some grocery stores put these herbs in the refrigerated section. It makes no sense. Perhaps this is why, when I bring home these lovely green potted plants, and set them on my windowsill, they die. Oh my. Oh yes they do.

Death due to lack of climatisation – going from that chilled vegetable section to a warm window sill. Or are they just crappy herbs? I must admit the basil doesn’t taste as fragrantly delicious as fresh herbs should.

So anyways. I get home and put them in my herb pot holder on the windowsill. And within days, despite watering according to instruction, they wilt and look awful. Of course I could just use them as soon as I get them home. But grocery shopping for me is like clothes shopping for other people. As I meander through the aisles, I spot all sorts of wonderful things and the “outfits” just form in my mind and I buy ingredients for many different meal possibilities. Like yesterday, for example. I bought kale, fresh parsley, some pre-washed bags of “American salad” (which normally I wouldn’t do, as I prefer to buy, wash and assemble my own, but at 39p per bag, it was a deal that was too good to be ignored) and far too many other things that are fresh and should be used pretty much right away. So a bit of wilting is par for the course I guess.

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