Monthly Archives: September 2011


When I graduated college, unorthodoxly in the middle of winter, nearly half a lifetime ago, my friends threw a party for me. Generously, they tried to identify my favorite food to serve at the gathering. They were all a bit flummoxed. Each of them knew that my favorite food was not typical party-fare. My favorite food?: buttered toast.
I would sit for hours reading, studying, drawing up plans for new projects fueled by thick slices of German rye bread that I’d toast in the oven then slather with butter. A sprinkling of salt and a cup of tea and I was set for hours on end.
Then life happened. First the dairy left the dietary picture. Gone was the butter. Then it was goodbye gluten. My favorite food no longer favored me. Can you relate?
So when I found ghee (pronounced with a hard G and rhymes with Glee), I was in heaven. Who knew that clarified butter was devoid of both lactose and casein, and was considered a healing agent in Ayurvedic (traditional Indian medicine) practices for centuries?
Let’s get clear:
That’s exactly what ghee does. It’s butter that’s gotten clear; clear of all the milk proteins and solids. Ghee is traditionally made from either cow or buffalo’s milk. The milk is heated which causes it to separate into three parts. The milk fat solids (which contain the dairy’s proteins) sink to the bottom. The water rises to the top. What’s left in the middle is a clear golden oil. This is ghee.

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Congestion, gestion, what’s your suggestion?

It’s back-to-school time. In our house we’re simultaneously winding down from late summer travels as we transition into the new school year. Just this past weekend my son, Gilbert, and I returned from a week-long trip to San Francisco. We were on an urban hiking tour of the city ~ climbing the hills to Haight/Ashbury, winding our way through Golden Gate Park, exploring the busy streets of the Mission, and trekking up 24th Street into Noe Valley, where Gilbert was born.
We also had a mission of our own: hunting down all the best restaurants.

When I say “best”, I mean best for our particular dietary restrictions and our high standards of yumminess. (I chronicled our daily food journal on the Replenish PDX Facebook page.)

Though we were making sound choices, picking restaurants and/or dishes that were gluten-free, dairy-free and avoiding foods we don’t usually eat, by the end of the week we were both feeling a little, well. . . off.

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