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This blog started as a way for me to share my recipes + culinary adventures, tips for vibrant health + happiness, thoughts on the latest developments in nutritional medicine + the low down on the Sydney wholefoods scene and beyond...

2 home-made supercharged drinks

soullachamberlain

IMG_2319My brain ticks over thinking of more ways to get bone broth and sauerkraut juice into my kids. Bone broths and lacto-fermenrted foods and beverages are particularly beneficial for infants and children, athletes, pregnant and nursing mothers, or anyone who has a compromised immune or digestive system. Traditional societies the world over consumed these foods on a regular if not daily basis but they seem to have fallen by the wayside in our modern, convenience-oriented, diets. I've written previously about the numerous health benefits of bone broths here and how to incorporate them into your diet (including smoothies!) here . I've also written about the numerous benefits of probiotic-rich lacto-fermented foods here and here.

So now I share 2 simple, delicious and refreshing drink recipes incorporating these nutrient-rich ingredients. My kids and friends have been thoroughly enjoying these drinks over these warm months to cool down (completely ignorant of the nutrient-dense/ probiotic-rich ingredients they are consuming!). If its a struggle to get your kids consuming bone broth or sauerkraut, these ideas might be just the ticket for getting these nourishing foods into them. They might sound strange, but trust me- they are delicious!

Watermelon Gelatin Drink

The addition of cold gelatinous beef broth to a drink gives it a more sweet caramel-like flavour with a moussey texture. Who would have thought? No one will even know that it contains beef broth!

IMG_2323Ingredients:

  • 700ml of seedless watermelon juice (blend the flesh AND the juice. If your watermelon has seeds you will need to remove them first)
  • 300ml of cold gelatinous beef broth (fat removed from the surface - store in freezer and use to fry meat)
  • Wedges of lime, lemon or lemonades (the latter is a fruit that is a hybrid cross of lemons and oranges) (optional)
  • Ice cubes (preferably form filtered water) (optional)
  • Stick of celery or fennel (optional)

Directions:

Combine watermelon and beef stock in a large jug and blend with hand help blender. Pour into glasses. Add other ingredients if desired and enjoy! Makes 4 glasses.

This drink can be consumed daily assuming you do not have any adverse reactions to fruit sugars. While my family and I consume bone broths daily (in morning smoothies and as part of the evening meal), I prefer to limit fruit intake due to the fructose content of fruit (fruit sugar is still sugar!). If I was offering this to my children I would not offer them any other fruit for that day as the volume of watermelon is more than enough. I sometimes offer a bottle of this drink to my children for afternoon tea (with a chunk of raw cheese). This is also a great non-alcoholic option for guests.

Note that everything other than the beef broth and watermelon is optional and added mostly for aesthetics which often entices children. I am amazed at how much more volume my children will drink if I simply throw in some icecubes, a fennel stick, a lemon wedge and a straw (I know appreciate why those little drink umbrellas were invented!). If your children will drink straight watermelon and beef broth without the extra “bells and whistles” then that’s an easier option!

Instead of watermelon, experiment with other seasonal fruit (eg mango, pineapple). Be sure to blend the flesh AND the juice of the fruit so you are eating wholefoods (the way nature intended) – consuming fruit juice alone without the flesh will result in a huge fructose hit (followed by insulin release) resulting in undesirable fluctuations in blood sugar and fat gain. The protein in the beef gelatin will aid in slowing down the release of the fruit sugars.

Sauerkraut Spritzer

This drink was invented as a means of using up surplus juice after making sauerkraut. Using it as a vinegar substitute in salad dressing is one option. Here's another:

IMG_2310Ingredients:

  • Sauerkraut juice (strained off from making sauerkraut) (allow 1/2 cup juice per person)
  • Wedges of lime, lemon or lemonades (the latter is a fruit that is a hybrid cross of lemons and oranges) (optional)
  • Ice cubes (preferably form filtered water) (optional)
  • Stick of celery or fennel (optional)
  • Sparkling mineral water (1/4 cup per person) (optional)

Directions:

Combine ingredients in a glass and enjoy!

The natural active yeasts in the sauerkraut juice produced from the fermentation process give the juice a naturally fizzy/effervescent taste. This drink can be consumed daily assuming you do not have any adverse reactions to lacto-fermented foods. This is also a great non-alcoholic option for guests.

Note that everything other than the sauerkraut juice is optional and added mostly for aesthetics. My children love all the extra "trimmings". I add  sparkling mineral water only if having guests over and usually wouldn't offer it to children.

Instead of or in addition to mineral water you could add watermelon juice or some other seasonal fruit (eg mango, pineapple). Be sure to blend the flesh AND the juice of the fruit for the reasons I outlined above in the Watermelon Jelly Drink.

If you try these drinks out I'd love to hear how you and your family enjoy them.

IMG_2521As an aside, and to remind me of nature's divinity- I found this perfectly heart-shaped delicate leaf in Centennial Park last week when frolicking in the grass with my kids. "That's what Mother Nature's dress is made out of" my 5 year old daughter said when she saw it. And her comment reminded us of our own divinity...