O Broth-er Where Art Thou?

Apologies for the misdirection, if you were lead to believe that this post may be a review of the classic Coen brothers film “O’ Brother Where Art Thou?” and some tasty photos of George Clooney. I’m afraid you will be disappointed in that department.

However, if on the other hand, you have just begun Induction and you are following the Atkins Nutritional way for the first time, you may be experiencing some short spells of dizziness or mild headaches. Don’t worry, it is a very short term and easily rectifiable situation as you can find out by reading our guidelines on the Induction Phase.

What you may be experiencing are the diuretic effects of following the Induction stage of the Atkins Nutritional way. As you may be aware, in the first week or two you will lose some fluids from your body and along with these fluids, some minerals, such as sodium are also lost. So, how to overcome this?

Broths

A broth is typically a clear soup made by boiling fish, meat or vegetables in water or a stock. The reason for drinking a broth in Induction (or anytime for that matter) are many; it is an easy and tasty way to replenish any minerals lost via the diuretic process, it is also a great way to get protein into your diet and they will keep the electrolytes in your body balanced.

If you don’t fancy cooking a broth or are in a hurry, here are two simple alternatives:

  1. A tablespoon of soy sauce mixed with a warm cup of water
  2. A teaspoonful of Bovril mixed with a boiling cup of water

But, I think you’ll find that cooking a lovely chicken, vegetable or beef broth will be far more satisfying as well as tasty.

Chicken Broth

The recipe for this broth can be found in “The New Atkins, New You” book on pages 285 – 288.

The nutritional values that are found in this particular recipe are as follows:

  • Protein = 7 grams
  • Total Carbohydrates = 1 gram
  • Net Carbohydrates = 1 gram
  • Fiber = 0 grams
  • Fat = 0 grams
  • Calories = 28

There are rich amounts of magnesium and potassium contained within the following ingredients too.

Ingredients

The following ingredients should make 16 x 225ml servings and is suitable for all phases of the Atkins Nutritional way.

  • chicken – 1 whole chicken (4lb)
  • onions – 2 small
  • celery – 2 sticks (with leaves)
  • garlic – 2 cloves
  • salt – 2 teaspoons
  • water – 7 pints (approx. 4 litres)
  • parsley, thyme and bay leaf are all optional (why not experiment with different herbs?)

Once you have all the ingredients together, begin by:

  1. Combining the chicken, onions, celery, garlic, water and salt and any other herbs of your choice in a large saucepan over a medium heat
  2. Bring the contents of the saucepan to the boil, then reduce to simmer
  3. Place a lid over the saucepan and leave for 2 hours
  4. Return and stir the contents to break up the chicken, top up the saucepan with water to bring it back to original level and allow to simmer for a further 2 – 4 hours
  5. On return, allow the contents of the saucepan, which is now a stock, to cool
  6. Using a colander or sieve, strain out the solids from the saucepan, this includes the chicken and discard
  7. Transfer the stock into the refrigerator to chill until fat congeals on the top of the stock
  8. Skim off this fat and discard it
  9. Now transfer the stock into smaller containers (with lids) which can be stored in your fridge for up to 3 days or you can freeze and store the stock for up to 3 months

Tip:

“Make your own stock cubes, pour the chilled chicken broth into ice-cube trays or bags and when cooking soups or stews, simply add one of your frozen stock cubes.”

What you have just done is made your own home made stock, which can be used in cooking other dishes or (as mentioned above) warmed up and taken as a sodium enriched drink.

chicken broth in a cup

Warm, revitalising chicken broth.

Tip:

“If you are doing this for the first time and are not sure what way the chicken should be, why not ask your local butcher for assistance. They should be able to give you a whole chicken which has been cleaned and washed.”

Variations on a theme

“If you would like to make your own beef broth, then all you would need to do is prepare the broth as per the recipe above, substituting the chicken for 4Lb of cut stewing beef.”

Vegetable Broth

Making your own homemade stock for use as a broth or for enhancing the flavor of soups and stews is far more satisfying and far more flavorsome than using store bought stock cubes. Bearing that in mind, below is a simple recipe that will allow you to make your own vegetable stock.
The nutritional values that are found in this particular recipe are as follows:

  • Protein = 0 grams
  • Total Carbohydrates = 2 gram
  • Net Carbohydrates = 2 gram
  • Fiber = 0 grams
  • Fat = 2 grams
  • Calories = 26

This recipe would also provide a good source of potassium, which is an important mineral for good health on any way of eating.

Ingredients

The following ingredients should make 16 x 240ml servings and is suitable for all phases of the Atkins Nutritional way.

  • Leeks – 4 medium (white and light green parts only)
  • Carrots – 2 medium, roughly chopped
  • Celery – 2 sticks, roughly chopped
  • Mushrooms – 115g, sliced
  • Garlic – 4 cloves, crushed
  • Rapeseed oil – 2 tablespoons (cold pressed, if possible)
  • Water – 7 pints (approx. 4 litres)
  • Parsley, thyme, bay leaf, marjoram and any other herbs that you like – 1 teaspoon of each
  • Salt – 2 tablespoons
  • Pepper corns – 10

Begin by:

  1. Chopping the veg, making sure to rinse all of the vegetables well under cold running water
  2. Chop the veg roughly (they are not going on a plate later)
  3. In a large saucepan, heat the oil over a medium heat
  4. Add in the leeks, carrots, celery, mushrooms and garlic. Sauté until the vegetables have become soft, but not browned. This should take about 8 – 10 minutes
  5. Now add the water along with the herbs, salt and pepper
  6. Bring the contents of the saucepan to the boil. Cover with a lid, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 hour, every now and then giving the contents a quick stir
  7. After the hour, remove the saucepan from the heat, strain the vegetables
  8. While straining, use a spatula or wooden spoon to press out any extra juices still contained within the vegetables
  9. Remove and discard the solid materials from the saucepan
  10. As with the chicken broth, place the saucepan into a fridge to chill
  11. Once chilled, transfer the liquid into suitable plastic containers for storage in the fridge or in your freezer. The stock should last up to 3 days in the fridge and up to 3 months in the freezer

Again, if you like, you can pour the chilled stock into ice-trays or ice-cube bags and use as stock cubes for cooking anytime or place in a cup and pour some boiling water in with the cube to make a warm and tasty, sodium enriched drink.

Enjoy!

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