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Winter Health and winter recipes

Winter brings the cold weather and a reflective mood.  It is at this time that we slow down our activities and find a warm place to be. We can help our body adjust to this change with some simple things.  Take the time to do a assessment of your lifestyle.  Does is promote good health?  Is your immune system woking at its best?  We must remember our good eating habits and our exercise programs. 
Our foods tend to be more robust and heavy and fresh foods are harder to come by.
Here are a few recipes to warm the body:
Butternut Squash Soup with apples
1 large squash (cooked)
6 cups of water (bone brooth for carnivores) ( veggie stock for vegetarians)
2 crispy apples (cubed)
1 teaspoon grated ginger
1/4 cayenne
1 tablespoon of a light miso (yellow or white)
optional herbs would include 1/2 teaspoon of oregeno, thyme or marjoram
Puree the squash and mix the water in a crock pot or pan.  Add the apples, herbs and the ginger.  Shortly before serving mix the miso in well.
As a garnish you can top with feta cheese, parmesan cheese or taosted chopped walnuts.
This is simple and delicious.  Children like this soup because of the sweetness of the squash.

Beet Borscht
4 cups of beets (cubed)
the beet greens from these beets (chopped small)
1 cup potatoes (cubed)
2 cups cabbage
5 cups of stock or water
2 stalks of celery (chopped small)
1 cup onion
4 cloves of garlic
1/2 teaspoon of dill weed
1 tablespoon light miso
1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
Cook the potatoes, beets and cabbage in the stock until tender and soft.  Saute the onions and garlic until translucent in olive oil or butter.  Add the beet greens and celery and cook until the added vegetables are soft. Carefully mash the potatoes and beets with a potatoe masher. Add the onions and celery and simmer softly.  When the soup is almost done add the miso, apple cider vinegar and dill.  Let it sit for 10 minutes so the flavors will blend.  Serve with a garnish of sour cream or greek yogurt that has fressh dill weed chopped up and added to the topping.

Spicey herb cider
1 quart of good apple cider vinegar (like Bragg's)
1 large clove of garlic
1 large piece of fresh ginger
1/2 to 1 teaspoon of cayenne
Chop the garlic into small pieces.  Peel the ginger and slice into small pieces.  Add these and the cayenne to the vinegar.  Let this sit for at least 10 days.  When this is done it can be used in cooking or as a tonic to warm the body.  You can make a cup of miso with this cider in it for a subsitute for the old fashioned chicken soup remedy. Take a tablespoon of miso (the light kind is better here) mix with hot water and then add a tablespoon of the cider.  Sip slowly.  Adjust all the ingredients to your taste!