Brassy Brassicas

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All things Brassica!

Brassy Brassicas: Kool Kale Energy Shake

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Our kids are eating kale….ok, maybe just a bite or two of salad.  But I can HONESTLY say they are LOVING kale juice!

Brassy Brassicas: Brussels Sprouts


It has been busy around here— it is that time of year, you can relate! With the business, my intentionality with eating two cups of brassica a day has waned slightly. But after reading an article entitled “You Are What You Eat,” in the New Pioneer Food Co-op newsletter (we're still members at the Iowa City Co-op), I am re-focused!

Brassy Brassicas – What can you do with Kale?


Several people have told me recently that they don’t know what to do with the kale that arrives in their food share or that is taking over their garden. Kale often gets a bad rap for being bitter. It is also hard for some people to think about eating a steamed green. It is delicious in soups, and I’ll discuss some options as the winter weather approaches. But for now, we’ve been enjoying a couple of other kale recipes that I wanted to share with you. The apple kale salad was such a hit at my book club the other night… and I even forgot to add the apples! I planned to add them at the last minute, and lost the thought. For those of you who were there, try it with apples, it’s even more tasty!!

Brassy Brassicas: Monster Slaw


“Fum, fo, fie, fee, monsters don’t eat broccoli!”…and rarely do our kids! We’ve tried it cooked with a cheese sauce, pureed, and roasted. We keep trying and also find silly ways to keep it fresh in their minds. Two of their favorite ways is belting out the words to “Food Opera” by Table Top People. The lyrics are hilarious but VERY FAST!!! (Take a listen.) Usually we get at least one bite of broccoli out of that song. The other way is reading a book called Monsters Don't Eat Broccoli by Barbara Jean Hicks. The illustrations are bright and eye captivating, while the rhymes draw the kids in for more. And in the end, the monster kids, eat the broccoli trees. When I started eating more brassica, I adapted a broccoli slaw recipe that always shows up at my family’s reunion and it has peaked my kids’ interest. They think the broccoli looks like the “monster broccoli trees” from the book. Whenever I make the recipe, they call it Monster Slaw….

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Brassy Brassicas - What are they, and why eat them?


When diet is wrong, medicine is of no use.
When diet is correct, medicine is of no need.
- Ancient Ayurvedic Proverb

Let food be thy medicine, thy medicine shall be thy food.
- Hippocrates

Lately, I refer to these quotes often. Food is not just something I eat for survival or taste; it is part of the way that I am healing physically. Most people describe my personality as kind, patient, sensitive and calm with a soothing voice. For my 4oth birthday, friends of mine created an ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL book filled with such words. But I have been struggling with flares of temper and surges of anger and it intensified this year. I will catch myself in the middle of saying or doing something, wondering who is this person???!!?? What just happened??!!?? This is scary!! At first I thought I was over-tired and stressed with work and additions to our family. But having made changes within my life to accommodate more sleep and less stress, I began realizing there was more that lay below the surface. Fortunately, I was able to recognize that one of the issues was hormone-related. With the help of my family practice doctor and a naturopathic doctor, I am making changes to my supplements, diet and exercise. As part of that treatment plan, I now eat two cups of vegetables from the BRASSICA family (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussel sprouts, kale) a day. When this was first prescribed to me, I thought to myself… HOW IN THE WORLD AM I GOING TO EAT BRASSICA EVERY DAY… AND TWO CUPS OF IT NONETHELESS!! But then the learner-side of my personality kicked in and I was amazed at all of the possibilities.

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