Being more self sufficient

Back in early April, my local group got together to talk about what we thought might be going to happen in the future, and how we might need to support ourselves and each other. I’ve already posted some of what we’ve discussed at later meetings, but here’s a bit of an index page with some overview topics, and links to more detailed info. Energy Solutions The topics from our power brainstorming session: Whole house power […]

Feminine Hygiene

The following post came up in Dr Mercola’s newletter today. Given that he’s only keeping his articles up for limited amounts of time now, it seemed prudent to make a copy of it. Tampons are currently shortage of the month, so now would be a good time to rethink feminine hygiene. One-use tampons, pads and panty liners may become a thing of the past, so we need to consider methods that can be used on […]

Gardening Resources 2 – Fruit & Veg A to Z

This page is a work in progress – a place to store useful info I find for growing our favourite fruit and veg. Mainly so I can find them again! But hopefully they’ll be useful to others too. Broccoli Tui Gardens Broccoli growing page Garden Grow’s Broccoli growing page Last time I went up to our original vege patch, up behind our shed, the broccoli had signs of life, but nothing that could be harvested. […]

Skill sets

I’ve been told that when I’m too busy, overwhelmed and exhausted, my tendency is to do more and think of more things that need doing. Maybe that’s true, as today in the shower, I started writing this post in my head, and it wasn’t even on my already overcrowded To Do list. Oh well, better get those thoughts recorded before they disappear, or keep me awake at night. Maybe later I’ll add more pictures, and […]

Brining Vegetables

As well as showing us how to brine olives, my friend showed us how to brine vegetables. This is what she told us: Different sites online have varying recipes & methods for brining vegetables. My mother-in-law made a salt and water solution only. Brine excess garden produce such as carrots, celery, cabbage, lebanese cucumbers, capsicums, beans. Boil a 2% salt/water solution and allow to cool. Link to brine calculators here. Pour boiling water over a […]

Brining Olives

I never knew this, but olives straight off the tree are too bitter to eat. But some clever folk, back in the day, discovered that they can be cured by being soaked in salty water. Probably in sea water back then. Maybe in sea water in some places still today. After 10-12 days, they become delicious. A friend in our area has three olive trees, and she invited some of us over to show us […]

Water Solutions 2 – Storing & Sterilising

In part 1, we looked at some possibilities for smaller water collection tanks that may fit into an urban or suburban space. In part 2, we look at what we do with the water to make it safe to use. Storing Water You may have collected water by: Collecting rainwater Storing mains water in a tank or in plastic bottles If you’re not able to have a rainwater tank, look for some larger water storage […]

Water Solutions 1 – Collecting Water

I may have mentioned that we live in Wellington, capital city of New Zealand. NZ is on a fault line, and Wellington particularly is vulnerable to earthquakes. Periodically those in “power” tell us what we need to do to prepare for that eventuality. The industrious and responsible among us will have had an emergency kit ready for years. The more lacksadaisical and procrastinating types probably haven’t got round to it yet. The one thing we […]

Food preservation

Hand in hand with changing a garden over to more food production comes the thought – if we grow more than we can eat, how will we preserve it? (Like how I’m thinking very positively? Or am I just being delusional?) So now might be a good time to put up a bit of a summary of some different types of food preservation, and if I’ve posted about them before, include a link. Our local […]

Power Solutions 5 – Washing & Hygiene

Last part of our power brainstorming session. The topics again: Whole house power Heating and cooling Food preservation and preparation Lighting, communications and devices Washing and hygiene Last but not least. Important, but not necessarily in a power saving way. Although we started talking about how being without power might affect us, there are a lot of other aspects we considered as well. Heating water Something to think about even if there end up being […]

Power Solutions 4 – Lighting, Communications and Devices

Part 4 of our power brainstorming session. The topics again: Whole house power Heating and cooling Food preservation and preparation Lighting, communications and devices Washing and hygiene If you’re wedded to your phone, you may think we had our priorities all wrong, with devices coming in at number 4. But trust me, once you’re warm and fed, you’ll be glad we sorted those out first. Lighting Before thinking about emergency lighting, let’s have a look […]

Power Solutions 3 – Food Preservation and preparation

Part 3 of our power brainstorming session. You’ll recall our topics were: Whole house power Heating and cooling Food preservation and preparation Lighting, communications and devices Washing and hygiene So, yes, you’ve got it, we’re up to what to do with our food. Preservation Fridges and freezers: These are a priority if there’s not much power If power fails, and the outage is expected to be short, don’t open them and things will keep cold […]

Power Solutions 2 – Heating and cooling

More on our power brainstorming session. Our topics were: Whole house power Heating and cooling Food preservation and preparation Lighting, communications and devices Washing and hygiene So let’s look at heating and cooling. As we’re headed into winter, we mostly discussed ways to keep ourselves warm. Some of these ideas seem obvious, especially to those of us who were around before heat pumps and central heating, but we decided no idea was too silly or […]

Power Solutions 1 – Whole House Power

We live in interesting times, and they could get a whole lot more interesting. I’ve heard some say they will get dire, but I prefer to think of it as difficult or challenging. We don’t want to bury our heads in the sand and pretend everything has gone back to normal, but we don’t need to panic either. Planning for all eventualities, however, seems like a good idea. So I got together with a group […]

Gardening Resources 1

Looking at the world around us, I think many of us are realising that we need to take a bit more responsibility for our own wellbeing, including producing at least some of our own food. Gardening Resources 2 – A to Z of our fav fruit & veg Ah, those wise souls who have been doing this for  years – getting nutritional, economic and emotional benefits from the practice. And then there’s me… So it’s […]

Feijoa recipes and preservation

It’s that time of year again – more feijoas than we can eat all in one go! But no need to waste anything. I’ve posted some of these before, but here are all my ideas in one place. Eat them fresh or put them in a smoothie Cut in half and scoop out the flesh. Save the skins for feijoa fizz. The smoothie pictured has: A cup of caspian sea yoghurt One pear, chopped Two […]

Baking powder replacement

Those of you who are gluten free or GAPS already know you need to avoid baking powder. You probably already have a bunch of recipes that use baking soda instead. But if you come across a recipe you want to try out that calls for baking powder, it’s handy to know how to replace it. To replace 1 teaspoon of baking powder: Option 1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, plus 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar Option […]

Macadamia muffins – gluten free, sugar free, keto, paleo or whole food

I’m keto at the moment, so the way I make them these bite size morsels are effectively a fat bomb in the form of cake. But I think they would adapt fine for other whole food diets. I made a blueberry version of these for Xmas, but previously I’d been making them with choc chips. So I’ll start with that version. First off, 150 grams of macadamias go into my mini food processor. They will […]

Revisiting my versatile Christmas cake recipe for special diets

I have previously posted about this cake here, but now seems like a good time to put all the versions together in one place. This is a beautiful dark cake, but because it’s a boiled cake, you don’t need to mature it for a month. If you want to use the brandy version and store in the bottom of the fridge for a month, it will improve with maturing, but can be eaten the same day, […]

Cheesy stuffed mushrooms

A new dish I tried over Christmas was cream cheese stuffed mushrooms.  A long time ago, I came across a recipe for mushrooms stuffed with feta and red onion, and this is a variation on that. It’s pretty simple really. But the trick I learned is how to prep the mushrooms before stuffing them. I bought a 400gm tray of smallish brown mushrooms, but the amount of stuffing would have filled probably 500gm. The important […]


It’s been a couple of years since I made gingerbread, and at that time I was focusing on making it GAPS friendly. I’m currently eating keto, so had a different focus this time. But by tweaking one or two ingredients, you can adapt this to be gluten free, dairy free, GAPS, Paleo, keto, or pretty much whichever variant of whole food diet you favour. Not AIP though – because without the spice, it wouldn’t be […]

Low Carb / Keto Brownies

A few months ago, I was trying out a recipe for Keto Flourless Chewy Double Chocolate Chip Cookies which sounded divine. Unfortunately, at the point where I should have had a dough, I didn’t – I had a cake mix. So I lined a swiss roll tin with some baking paper, slopped it on, and threw it in the oven. When it came out, it was like a flat brownie. So I just abandoned the idea of […]

Keto Yeast bread

I just came across this on Youtube and it sounds amazing. I’m sharing it here, so I can find it again when I want to try it. It’s an almond flour bread with psyllium husks, nutritional yeast, active yeast and egg whites. If you’re in the early stages of GAPS, you might not be able to tolerate the psyllium, but later on you may be able to. I’m off now to check out her other […]

Ginger Carrot Cashew spread

This recipe is my adaptation of one I came across on Steemit. The original recipe is raw and vegan, and you can see it here. I encourage you to check it out. My version is no longer raw, which I think is more suitable for a GAPSster or anyone with digestion issues. I also tweaked amounts of some of the flavourings, including increasing the extra virgin olive oil for added GAPSy goodness. Ingredients (makes about 2 […]

Velvet Latte Strawberry Smoothie

Just before Christmas, we added a new product to the Nature Foods line up called Velvet Latte. It’s a whole food, caffeine-free, latte mix that’s a variation on a Chai Latte. The manufacturer describes it as  “a delicious beetroot chai infusion, which makes a beautiful vibrant pink latte. Naturally sweet with subtle ayurvedic chai spices, this blend is a perfect harmony of flavour and nutrition. Enjoy heated with your choice of mylk, or chilled on ice […]