What You Should Know About Poultry Production Claims | Marks Daily Apple

What You Should Know About Poultry Production Claims | Marks Daily Apple.

I have many people ask me about reading poultry labels, and a blog post about it has been on my to-do list for months. Thankfully, Marks Daily Apple recently posted this, and I can just pass the info along to you guys! Just click on the link above and be informed! Educate your children as soon as they’re old enough to shop.

Additional notes from Organic Eater: “no water added” is sometimes on labels and that was not covered in the link above. You DO want to buy “no water added” chicken so that you are paying for the weight of the MEAT and not the weight of the water inside the meat. Processing chicken can involve a water solution in the meat before freezing it, so when you pay by the pound, you are paying for the weight of the water that was added. I do not know if that water is necessarily toxic, but I surely wouldn’t want to pay for water in the meat. This is helpful when comparing prices, because you may not be paying much more per MEAT pound when you compare the two. Just something to be aware of.

If pastured meats are absolutely not in your budget, or your only option is grocery store meats (CAFO, factory meats), eat the leanest and lightest (no dark meats) cuts you can find, ie chicken breasts. The toxins in CAFO factory meats can end up in the fat of the animal, so eating leaner cuts may be a way of cutting down on toxins. And consider that pork and chicken are NEVER allowed (per USDA standards) hormones the way beef is allowed hormones, so that fact may be helpful in determining the best of the worst choices. IF your budget has room for all pastured meats, then by all means, eat that yummy fat and dark meat! Does that make you squeemish because you’ve heard for years that saturated fat is unhealthy? See this page with a link to how healthy saturated fats really are or see this post from the Wellness Mama, with expert Chris Masterjohn. Lastly, if eating out, your best option is probably going to be a vegetable plate since finding pastured meats in restaurants is rare. Although, then there’s that whole issue of rancid processed oils that the vegetables are cooked in, and that’s no good either, so maybe it’s a toss up….

Here is the page for Beef Labeling Resources

Encouraging Health, …and smart shopping

Dana, Organic Eater

chicken and apple fresh color resized

Easiest Chicken Tortilla Soup Ever (link + my suggestions)

OrganicEater.com 2012

I found a recipe that is SO easy and delicious, I HAD to share it with you. Bonus: it’s Mexican. Trifecta (again) in my life!! Vegan friends, or friends who are out of chicken, you can make it by using white beans or garbanzo, and vegetable stock. Maximized Living Advanced Plan or Paleo friends, this may have too many beans for you, depending on your starch tolerance.

Hop on over to The Humbled Homemaker’s recipe for Easiest Chicken Tortilla Soup Ever then come right back here to get my extra tips for making this ORGANIC and/or making it with a little extra nutrition I added (and a substitution).

“ONE-POT STOP” here: Pour some organic free-range chicken stock into your pot. Homemade stock/broth is your “best” here, but do what you can. I used a box tonight and felt not one bit of guilt. I also ADDED a spoonful of crushed garlic to the stock, because I try to add garlic to ANYthing I can, for extra nutrition. If you don’t have stock, you could just use water, but I would definitely add garlic for more flavor in that case. Of course I used organic free range chicken breasts. Two were plenty for this recipe. I cut them into very small pieces, cause who wants a big ol’ chunk o’ chicken to have to gnaw on, when this is “soup”?!  I cut up my chicken before I boiled it to save time (didn’t want to have to wait for boiled chicken breasts to cool before cutting/shredding).

Then I dumped in a jar of this:

pineapple salsa

which is NOT organic, but IS delicious and I think it was the “secret sauce” in how it turned out so fabulously!! Pineapple has fructose, so some will need to add a no-sugar salsa instead. I only had one jar, so…… I improvised and threw in half a jar of Trader Joes Marinara sauce (hey, it’s tomatoes, that’s all I cared about. And now my soup is Italian Tortilla soup, but that’s OK). I may not change that when I make this next time, cause it was soooo good! Again, home-made salsa would have been healthiEST, but I was in a hurry tonight and that is life.

Next, I threw in a box of drained organic black beans. Boxed are healthier than canned because they’re BPA free, but soaked/cooked at home are best, if you’re eating them at all. I saw her note at the bottom, about garbanzo beans, so I threw those in too! You could also add organic frozen corn here (regular corn is highly GMO, so buy organic or know your source). I try to cut grains every chance I get, so I did not add corn this time. If company was coming and I was trying to ‘stretch” this meal, I would have added it:)

Then I added the rest of my box of chicken stock and some s&p and let it cook about 5 minutes. THAT’S IT!!!! Chicken, stock/water (& garlic), salsa (marinara), beans. It could not be easier. I think this would work great in a crock pot too, so let me know if you try it that way. Another way to make this quickly is to have your chicken and beans and salsa ready the night before, then all you have to do is throw them in the pot with the stock. Done. You’re welcome.

If you have time, you could add homemade grain free tortillas from Mark’s Daily Apple, or Cheddar Biscuits from HomeCookedHealthy, which is my new favorite grainfree bread to keep in stock around here.  Quickfix: organic blue corn chips (small amount!). The soup is good enough all by itself, though.

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Encouraging Health,

Organic Eater