Category Archives: Self-Health Survival Guides

The Importance of Fermentation

What is fermentation, and why is it so important? Fermentation is, first and foremost, a traditional way of preserving food that has been around for millennia. The earliest evidence of fermentation dates to about 6,000 BC in the Fertile Crescent region of the Middle East. It is possibly the oldest method of preserving food prior […]

The Best Colcannon Recipe

I married an Irishman whose mother was from County Kerry and whose father was from Thurles, Tipperary. (Now that’s a county you’ve heard of.) I was married to my husband Bill for nearly 56 years—almost as many times as I made corned beef and cabbage for our St. Patrick’s Day tradition. Each year, I would […]

How Nutritious Is Your Food?

With March being National Nutrition Month and all, it seems wise to examine the things we take for granted on the topic. Part of being a self-healther is to find answers to those questions that pop into your head from time to time. This month let that question be, “How nutritious is my food?” Many […]

Soup Is Hot!

The ultimate comfort food, soup is in the news! Whether it’s an old favorite that’s been around for years, a familiar soup with a new twist, or a beloved classic from grandmother’s kitchen, we love them all. On the home front, as we’ve been overusing our kitchens for the last ten months, soup has enjoyed […]

Time to Upgrade Your Heart Health Knowledge

It’s that time of year again, my friends—American Heart Month. If you’re interested in keeping your heart healthy all year long, this is a good reminder in case you’ve slacked off since last February. After all, a whole lot happened in the world in 2020 that may have thrown you off your self-health game. Let’s […]

The Power of One Word in 2021

The new year has begun, and whether you’re a resolution maker or not, you likely have some idea of what you’d like to see happen over the next 12 months. I’m trying something a little different this year. I’ve chosen one word to be my guide for making decisions, and it feels quite powerful. I […]

Fermented Clown’s Treacle:
A Delicious and Potent Year-Round Remedy

“Clown’s treacle.” Surely you’ve heard of it? If not, it’s still likely that you have some in your kitchen right now. According to The Spice and Herb Bible by Ian Hemphill, clown’s treacle (also called “poor man’s treacle”) are both old-time names for garlic. Treacle was first used in the 14th century as an antidote […]

Staying Well During Flu Season:
Meat Stock to the Rescue

The weather is turning cooler, and winter is officially just around the corner. As the temperature drops, many of us start craving foods and beverages that are warming, both in temperature and in spice. We trade in our iced tea for hot, spicy chai and swap our cold salads with warming soups, stews, and stocks. […]

Christmas Chestnuts

Christmas chestnuts roasting on an open fire…or right in your oven. Here’s to bringing this underused fruit/nut to your holiday table. I’m a New Yorker through and through. Though I’ve lived in Colorado for some 40 years, my East coast accent is still detectable. Back in my younger days, I’d walk to work in high […]

Shrimp de Jonghe for the Holidays

Many years ago, at a Christmas party, the hostess served a dish called Shrimp Dijon. It was delicious. I live in Chicago, and this dish is a favorite served in many restaurants, but none are as good as the first time I tried it. Not only that, but the restaurant versions had no Dijon mustard […]

Build Your Cooking Confidence with This Seasonal Favorite

Whenever someone tells me that they’re not much of a cook, but they want to learn, I always steer them in the same direction—one dish with endless variations that’s so forgiving that you can’t go wrong. This seasonal favorite will build your cooking confidence every time you make it. What is it, you ask? Exactly […]

The Quickest Way to a Family Connection

A lot of families are spending more time together during these days of COVID, but being in the same space doesn’t necessarily guarantee a deeper connection with each another. After all, our time is still being divided between work (video meetings and phone calls) and/or school (video classes and self-directed assignments). There’s no gimme that […]

Solutions for Your Turkey Leftovers

Ask Chef Phyllis I have this problem every year so I decided to call the turkey hotline for answers. They were helpful with the cooking of the bird, but with the leftovers not so much. I like leftover turkey with dressing, gravy, cranberry sauce, and mayonnaise on a sandwich. Most often, I slice the turkey […]

Finding Comfort in
Simple Steps to Everyday Self-Health

Even the most avid self-healther can lose their way every once in a while. It begins innocently enough. Something comes along to throw you off your daily routine, and all of a sudden it’s been a month since you’ve made a weekly meal plan or found the motivation to exercise. But then one day you […]

Fire-Roasted Salsa

I never could have guessed that one day I’d be writing a post while taking refuge from a wildfire at a friend’s home during a mandatory evacuation. Life has a mind of its own, it seems. But on second thought, I have made—with and without fate interfering—many of my own choices. I chose to reside […]

Tomato Abbondanza? Make Cosmo Salad!

Tomatoes love the heat, and right now it seems like hundreds of small, homegrown cherry tomatoes, bursting with flavor and aroma, are growing before our eyes each day. (At least it seems like hundreds when you’re the kid picking them!) Who doesn’t love layering a thick slice of beefsteak tomato, dripping with its seeds and […]

Cabbage:
The Cold-Storage Vegetable that Lasts Forever

Grilled Cabbage

The most forgettable vegetable is currently having its day in the limelight (or day in the sun, if you prefer). Kale was in, but now it’s so last year. Brussels sprouts were all the rage—but after roasting them in the oven, they gave many of us gas. (Which says more about the state of our […]