"Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?" ~ Mary Oliver

Tag: Dr. KellyAnn

additional bone broth notes . . .

bone broth . . .

bone broth . . .

Okay, so I just opened up the Instant Pot and peered into the soup to see if it was cooked sufficiently. The beef was falling off the bone so I am now able to confirm that 75 minutes pressure cooked is long enough. There was a layer of fat on top when I took this photo.

I then began to rummage around the stock to see how the bones fared. And it suddenly struck me that bone marrow – such an English delicacy that antique marrow spoons were made to enjoy it – was still left in the bones! So I fished them all out and decided to harvest the beef and the marrow before discarding the bones. Unlike some broths made on the stove – like chicken – the beef was tender and not tough, and also still had some taste. I’m going to think about what to do with the harvested marrow and beef later on – and will freeze them for now.bone-broth-2

After the broth cools enough for me to pour it through a sieve, I’ll then divide it into quart soup containers and put them in the freezer – the fat should rise to the top to be skimmed off before heating it up and drinking it on my first mini-fast day. Cheers!

Postscript: Just realized that with all the hoopla and marketing for this “21-day diet that will change your life by mini-fasting 2X a week on homemade bone broth” that it’s ONLY SIX TIMES that one is drinking bone broth instead of eating during those three weeks!

So depending upon how much each serving you drink, 6 X a day, you’ll probably be making bone broth 3-4 times altogether. After the 21 day diet, I do plan to continue with more beef bones/ribs that I have in the freezer. Just wanted to give readers some sense of scale of this whole thing.

The biggest lesson learned of all that I experienced with all this activity is that the Instant Pot is an absolutely great cooking machine, once I figured out how to turn it ON using the manual button rather than pre-programmed ones!

It’s made of high quality material with a substantial stainless cooking pot. It’s quiet, it’s safe to use and it works FAST relatively speaking. I’m planning to try it out to make a veal ragu to serve with pappardelle noodles for a piano party we’re having in mid-October. And maybe Irish oatmeal in the mornings that usually takes half an hour on the stove when the weather gets colder.

bone broth diet: minus day one


It’s Sunday and my Instant Pot arrived from Amazon mid-morning. I’m going to open it up, rinse it out and read the directions for making beef bone broth.

But first, I read this great article which helped me to decide to ROAST the beef bones first before putting them with carrots, celery, onion, garlic and apple cider into the Instant Pot. So I took out a pack (about 3 lbs.) of beef marrow bones from the freezer which I bought yesterday and heated them up in the microwave to defrost them. Then, I put them into the oven and roasted them for about an hour, turning them over midway – smelled divine.

Then, I opened Dr. KellyAnn’s book, “Bone Broth Diet” which arrived in the same delivery as the Instant Pot. I decided the Instant Pot could wait until I read through the parts of the book that I needed to get started. I thought it was written well with lots of supporting nutritional information and anecdotes. The most important thing I noted is that her recipe for beef bone broth included beef short ribs in addition to the bones which would enrich the broth and enhance the flavor.

Since I also needed to buy carrots, I went to the grocery store and bought a pack of beef rib bones and some spring water to replenish our supply. Back home again, I turned on the oven from roasting the bones and put three pieces of beef rib bones in to roast for about 45 minutes.

With the beef bones/ribs roasting away in the oven, I sat down to read the manual for operating the Instant Pot. Looked pretty simple to me: open the lid, fill not too high, close the lid, push the right buttons to cook “soup.”

After waiting a half hour for some steam to come out, it didn’t look like the pot was heating up or building any pressure. I looked online at some Youtube videos about how to turn the pot on properly. Not much help. I then stopped the machine by pushing “cancel”, unplugged the pot and opened the lid. The liquid was barely warm. Baffled, I put the lid back on, plugged it in and pressed “soup” again. I then tried to add more minutes but suddenly, there were 3 beeps and the LED window showed “ON.” Well, that was an improvement. I then learned online from a very helpful guy that he NEVER uses any of the pre-programmed buttons like “soup” or “stew.” He just presses the manual button, adds on the time he wants and the machine beeps and turns on to what he’s programmed. Why wasn’t that obvious from reading the manual or watching the videos? Go figure.

Back to the diet book while waiting for the Instant Pot to act “instantly,” I also noted that in addition to making and mini-fasting with the bone broth two days a week, that this miracle diet requires you to do what every other diet in the world requires you to do:

  1. Drop gluten foods – breads, flour, pasta
  2. Drop glycemic vegetables – corn, potatoes, sweet potatoes, kabocha squash
  3. Drop sugar, fast food and anything that we all know is bad for us.

DO eat high-quality protein meats (grass-fed beef, organic chicken, etc.)

DO eat lots of organic vegetables. Tons!

DO eat organic eggs with bacon (yep!)

DO NOT EAT english muffins, toast, sandwich bread, rolls with hamburgers, pizza crusts, (you get the picture.)

So, outside of the bone-broth twist, (because there have been 2-day mini-fast diets around too,) this seems like most diets out there: Paleo et al. that caution low carbs, non-gluten, no sugar etc.- including getting off the couch and getting some exercise even if it’s limited to walking every day or so.

Meanwhile, I am encouraged to report that the aroma alone of roasting beef bones and ribs in the oven almost justifies making the bone broth whether you’re on a diet or not. Can’t wait to taste it after it’s had its run in the Instant Pot pressure cooker, false starts and all! If it makes the 2-day a week mini-fast endurable, it might all be worth it!

[Maybe the glitches in getting the machine to work is due to Mercury still being in Retrograde until the 22nd, eleven more days from now.]

Note: Here’s a ‘bare bones’ recipe without all the editorializing above:

  1. Take 3 lbs. marrow bones and 2-3 pieces of beef ribs; roast in 425 degree oven for an hour, turning pieces halfway thru
  2. Cut up 3 organic carrots, 3 stalks of celery, a small whole vidalia onion and 1-2 cloves of peeled garlic (I used 1 cut in half)
  3. Place bones/meat/vegetables into cooker pot
  4. Add spring water to an inch lower than “maximum”
  5. Add 1 tablespoon Bragg’s apple cider vinegar and 1 teaspoon sea salt, 1 bay leaf

Turn on Instant Pot manually to 75 minutes. See if that’s long enough once the pot pressure has vented and you can take a look at the broth. Cook longer if desired. Cool, pour through a strainer; store in quart containers and freeze.

Honestly? the aroma of it smells like this beef bone broth could be an elixir for life! I’m glad that the ‘unseen hand of the Universe’ led me to it!


the ‘unseen hand of the Universe’ today. . .


a flexible glass tube flower vase "lost" and now "found" . . .

A friend from my college days wrote to me today that she didn’t understand how elements in my book, “Uncommon Hours” combined such concepts as transcendental values, the tarot, horoscopes and the “unseen hand of the Universe” as components of a consistent world or life-view. I, in turn, was baffled because it’s exactly how my life seems to perk along everyday.

For example, I spent quite a bit of time today in the local Bank of America office trying to sort out some accounting errors and to report fraudulent activity on my checking account. It took a long time because the Bank’s fraud department didn’t answer the phone even after an hour’s wait in the manager’s cubicle. After I went home to try the fraud line again, I returned to the bank to close out my account and open a new one. During this time, I had become friendly with the bank manager who helped me with these transactions. During our chitchat while waiting to connect with said fraud department, she told me about “Instant Pot” – an electric pressure cooker.  I was delighted to hear about it because I’ve used a manual pressure cooker to cook brown rice macrobiotically but had stopped doing it because it took too long. She was enthusiastic about this kitchen gadget that would cook rice, make stock and stews as a pressure cooker (meaning fast) and could also be used as a slow cooker. When I went home, I read about it on Amazon, saving it in my checkout box.

Later this evening, I watched a chamber music special called “Simple Gifts,” a “Live from Lincoln Center” program about artist-led performances at the Shaker community in Kentucky, held in an incredible tobacco barn that was magical in its appearance with daylight showing between the slats and superior performances of artist-led chamber music. I thought it was an interesting concept not to have a conductor, but for various musicians leading the rest of the ensemble themselves, depending on whether/when they had the lead melody including wind instruments. It’s such a simple and basic concept but I had not seen it performed with such a large ensemble. I was also impressed by the co-directors, a husband-wife musician team who played the piano and cello: Wu Han and David Finckel who are also directors of the Chamber Music Society at Lincoln Center.

Directly after the special, the PBS station segued right into a healthy diet program featuring a Dr. KellyAnn somebody. She was a little grating so I turned it off but idly looked up her book online and read about her regimen to lose weight and turn your health around in 21 days because I had resolved to get in better shape just tonight after we had finished dinner. Her routine turned out to rely on two days of “fasting” and sipping homemade bone broth from beef bones or chicken bones, etc. simmering on the stove for six hours or so.

So if you’re still with me, of course, that brings my day full circle to the convo at the bank earlier where I learned about the Instant Pot which, (voila!,) is capable of making stock that takes hours on the stove in just a couple of hours in its electric pressure cooker mode. Get it? The unseen hand of the Universe, right?

But what about the horoscope part? I had read that Jupiter, a very powerful and positive planet, would enter G.’s birth sign today for the first time in twelve years, perhaps auguring good fortune. Lo and behold this afternoon, we received some good news from a Court ruling, giving us a small victory we had hoped for. Maybe we might even be turning the corner in this David vs. Goliath battle! See what I mean?

The opening question above also challenged the spiritual premise of my book and my first over-reaction was to ditch it, frustrated that yet another reader didn’t “get it” the way that I had intended. After today’s events though, I decided not to give up on it just because someone else could not imagine a life filled with so much serendipity and synchronicity.

Today has been a busy day and I feel the Universe has given me a good lesson (again!)  Hallelujah! This is the way my life goes along, just about every day. I’m not kidding. Is it just following your intuition? Seems like more than that to me, doesn’t it?

Thank you Helpers!

Note: I ordered the “Instant Pot” to make bone broth per the 21 day diet plan. Will buy ingredients today at Mekong, a Vietnamese market in town and make a first batch of bone broth after the pot arrives and I figure out how to do it. Stay tuned.