Market Street Cafe & Apothecary

Market Street Café and Apothecary

They say ‘when the student is ready the teacher will appear’. It’s true and has been evident many times throughout my life. I didn’t expect this to be the case when I went to visit a new culinary experience in Lockhart, Texas. From the moment I walked it, Monique, owner and herbalist extraordinaire began to teach. She offered me tea as medicine, ‘a nervine lemon balm, a type of tea that calms the nerves, good for anxiety and stress’, she said. We walked back and forth, as she shared books and information from her training, taught me about the pioneers of herb and plant medicine, passed on material about all things holistic and natural. I spent almost two hours learning from a perfect stranger, one who welcomed me into her restaurant and space with open arms. Not to mention her husband, co-owner and chef genius Sutton, and sous chefs Espy and Christina who offered me delicious food from the second I sat down. (pimento stuffed bacon wrapped jalapenos and pecan crusted chicken over a bed of spinach with homemade vinaigrette, um yum!!!)

‘Let food be thy medicine and medicine thy food’ is posted at on the mirror at the entrance. Monique and her husband, Sutton, encompass this philosophy and have worked in the food world for most of their lives. They moved to Lockhart after running successful food trucks in Austin, Texas. According to their website:

‘Monique and Sutton share a passion for life, food and friendship. They have shaped a continuous and beautiful vibe of bringing people of all walks of life together. Their uniqueness and charm reflects within their space and exudes a warm and inviting atmosphere.’

This is what the Lockhart community gets every time they walk into Market Street Café and Apothecary. After dedicating seven years in my favorite rural town of Texas, I know my people and know this is exactly what they need. The owners have big plans of creating an special apothecary themed pre-fixed menu with a starter, salad, main entrée, desert and drink, all infused with healthy, wholesome delicious ingredients. Monique plans to host events to teach how to make bone broth and cook and work with herbs that the locals can grow in their own homes and gardens.

This is what I mean about the student being ready and the teacher appearing. The café, Monique, Sutton, their culinary crew and their intention have appeared. The students, the Lockhart community is ready and willing, at least all those who were part of my care during my time there. Lockhart has a foundation of brilliant clinicians, from awesome docs and PA’s and NP’s, to endless incredible clinical staff and a hospital 15-minutes away. Now we have a true healer, with a huge heart, some rich natural tools and techniques that have been practiced for ages and a talent for teaching and sharing all that she knows about tea, food, herbs, plants and community as medicine.

I hope you’re as excited as I am about the newest addition to the Lockhart community. The food is beyond delicious, the ambience is therapeutic from the second you step in and the people make it sweet and welcoming and a bit like going home. Go visit Market Street Café and Apothecary, your belly and body will thank you.

Winter Wellness Superfood List

This was part of my 12-day Holiday Cheer series and I wanted it to be a permanent fixture on my website too. It’s a good reference when eating through the seasons. Hope you’re able to boost your mood with some of these winter foods!

Winter Wellness Superfood List

Foods To Supercharge Your Mood

Oh, wintertime. Some days, you love waking up to frosty mornings and ice covered blades of grass. Some days, you just want to stay in bed, hibernate and drink warm apple cider all day. This is a natural part of the winter season, as we withdraw, get a little more lazy, soak in the short hours of sun and hibernate during the longer nights, a slight stillness takes over.

We can use this stillness to rest and reflect. We can also feed our bodies and minds the right nutrients in forms of food, drink, relationships and thoughts to help us get through the heavy and uninspired moments.

As a yoga as medicine teacher, I integrate many of Ayurveda’s 10,000 year old teachings in my own health and the health of my clients and patients. Ayurveda is the study of the science of life. Ayur means life, veda means knowledge or science. The study of Ayurveda follows two primary tenets, ‘the body and mind are inextricably connected’ and ‘nothing has more power to heal the body than the mind’ (Deepak Chopra). It also reminds us that we as human beings are part of nature and asks us to get in tune with our constitutions:

  • Vata- Energy of movement
  • Pitta- Energy of fire or digestion
  • Kapha- Energy of structure

I treat food like the gateway drug, if you start eating more wholesome foods, your energy increases, your stress level decreases, you become more inclined to exercise and get out into nature. From food you begin to build a foundation of whole health.

Like everything that I teach, there is no one size fits all. This list of foods are known to balance the body as well as providing a robust boost of nutrients and energy, but some of them may not be for you and your constitution. Eating well and mindfully, allows body and mind to give you hints on what works and what doesn’t. Good food as medicine, that’s the way to real, whole, optimal health! Enjoy!!

Winter Wellness Food List:

  • Eat more foods that are sweet, sour, salty, heavy, oily, hot like soups, stews and healthy fats and organic protein.
  • Eat less foods that are spicy, bitter, cold, light like salads, smoothies, crackers, raw foods

Veggies

Avocados     Beets     Carrots Spinach       Romanesco   Parsley

Pumpkin     Squash, Winter     Zucchini     Rutabaga  Ginger

Sweet Potatoes     Tomatoes     Scallions   Bok Choi     Celery

Garlic  Parsnips   Collard Greens  Kale   Green Beans

Fruits

Figs     Grapes   Mangos       Limes     Lemons     Apple   Dates

Oranges       Papayas     Tangerines     Bananas    Pears

Meat/Fish From grass-fed, free-range, cage-free, organic, local sources if possible

Turkey     Chicken     Salmon     Tuna     Lamb

Wild game     Venison     Sardines  Anchovies

Legumes

Lentils- brown, yellow, green   Mung beans     Split peas

Chickpeas     Adzuki

Oils

Almond     Olive     Coconut     Pumpkin     Sesame     Sunflower    Truffle

Nuts and Seeds    

Almonds     Flax     Brazil     Cashews     Pecans       Pistachios       Walnuts

Spices/Seasonings

Anise     Cinnamon     Basil       Black Pepper     Cumin

Ginger     Sea Salt     Saffron     Turmeric   Coriander   Curry

Vinegars

Apple Cider     Red Wine     Rice     Balsamic

Tarragon         Ume plum

Sauces

Wheat-free Tamari   Apple cider based Mustard        Cashew dressing      Coconut Aminos

If you’re eating dairy and grains:

Dairy

Grass-fed butter   Raw milk (from a trusted source only)     Goats milk

Grass-fed cheese   Kefir     Ghee

Non-Gluten Grains

Amaranth       Quinoa        Millet     Buckwheat

Rice- red, black, brown, forbidden, wild

 

This is just a list of superfoods available during the wintertime that are nutrient-rich and wholesome. Here are a couple of recipes for that pack a few of the most nutritious ones into a simple meal:

Butternut Squash Soup

From Aicacia Young, RD at Climb Healthy http://www.climbhealthy.com/savory-butternut-squash-soup-vegan-paleo/

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil (or butter
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cups cubed butternut squash, fresh or frozen
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme (or rosemary)
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Heat oil in a large soup pot. Add carrot, celery and onion.
  2. Cook until vegetables have begun to soften and onion turns translucent, 3 to 4 minutes.
  3. Stir in butternut squash, thyme, chicken broth, salt and pepper.
  4. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until squash is fork-tender, about 30 minutes.
  5. Use an immersion blender to purée soup. Alternatively, let the soup cool slightly and carefully purée in batches in an upright blender.

 

Ground Chicken Stir-Fry

  • 1 pound of ground chicken
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup onions
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger root, grated
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup of spinach
  • 1 cup bok choi
  • 1 cup of greens (kale or chard)
  • 1 cup mushrooms
  • 1 cup broccoli
  • ½ cup celery
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
  • coconut aminos and wheat-free tamari to taste (optional)

Heat up wok with sesame oil. Add garlic, ginger, onions cooking for 2-3 minutes. Add bok choi, celery, broccoli and stir some more. Then add turkey, mushrooms, spinach and cook through. Hefty pinch of salt. Add coconut aminos and/or tamari to taste.

Apple Cider Vinegar

About 90% of my discharge instructions include adding probiotics to my patients daily lives. I work in low-income, underserved communities and asking them to find a probiotic that is right for them is difficult, not to mention pricey.  Probiotic supplements often decrease in potency because they cannot survive the highly acidic environment of the stomach. That’s why fermented foods and drinks rich in probiotics are best.

Why do I do prescribe them? Well first let me give you some background:

What are probiotics? They are live bacteria that are beneficial to our bodies. About 100 trillion bacteria, viruses, fungi, protozoa (for those of us who have them) live in bodies as an ecosystem called the microbiome. Our bodies are made up of cells (white blood cells, bone cells, nerve cells, etc) that are outnumbered by this microbiome by about 10 to 1.

When we live in this world among chemicals, pesticides and pollutants, our good bacteria (good flora, good microflora) and our inner protective microbial organisms get destroyed. Then we eat and drink food and beverages that have chemicals, pesticides, pollutants and genetically-modified organisms in them and our microbiome is challenged and the good stuff is destroyed some more. Probiotics help rebalance the good bacteria and work to keep the microbiome and our bodies and minds in happy homeostasis.

Here are some of the friendly bacteria that we know about so far:

  • Lactobacillus acidophilus
  • Lactobacillus bulgarius
  • Lactobacillus reuteri
  • Streptococcus thermophilus
  • Saccharomyces boulardii
  • Bifidobacterium bifidum
  • Bacillus subtilis
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae

So when I realized that I should start with what my patients know and may already have in their home, I thought of apple cider vinegar and I began ‘prescribing’ apple cider vinegar (ACV). ACV is a good addition to your daily food routine because it offers myriad of health benefits. Vinegar has been used for thousands of years for medicinal uses. ACV is made by taking apples and fermenting them making acetic acid, which can help control harmful bacteria.

Science has studied the benefits of ACV and some of them include: reduced LDL cholesterol, reduced blood sugar, lowers blood pressure and can help with weight loss. There is also some evidence that it helps with acne, anxiety, allergies, asthma, diarrhea, GERD (reflux disease) and overall immune system health.

Adding ACV to something you put in your body daily is a really easy way to help your microbiome heal and get back to good.

Here are some ideas:

Add one teaspoon to 8 ounces of water and drink before meals

Make a salad dressing out of it with olive oil and sea salt

Take local honey, two teaspoons of ACV and filtered water and put in bottle, shake up and drink throughout the day

Additional forms of probiotics in foods or drinks:

Kefir

Raw milk or goats milk/yogurt

Fermented cabbage/kimchi

Fermented cheeses