• Jessica

Quarantine in the Kitchen: A Recipe for Gut-Friendly "French Chilaquiles"

Updated: May 1

News flash: Cooking is a form of self-care.

According to the BBC, three out of four Americans are under some form of lockdown. Here in France, it is actually illegal to go outside without a signed affidavit indicating that you are taking part in a government-sanctioned activity. You can go no more than 1 kilometer from your home, and you can be ticketed — subjected to fines of hundreds of euros — if you are stopped by a cop without your signed attestation that you are out and about out of necessity.


As we transition to the "work from home" lifestyle, many of us are coping with problems focusing. After all, we are dealing with an unprecedented distraction, the likes of which we have never experienced before in modern history. The time is right, however, to nourish ourselves and pass the time productively with some home-cooked goodness.


Cooking is particularly therapeutic, literally letting "food be thy medicine." Chopping ingredients is like a mindfulness exercise — redundant yet providing ample sensory stimulation — while following the steps of a recipe forces you to break away from anxious, ruminative thinking. You can even find ways to incorporate immune-boosting ingredients (i.e. fresh garlic, anti-inflammatory curcumin) into your recipes, making it feel like an investment in your health and wellness.


Asel Hofgartner, founder of the luxury CBD beauty brand Kana Vita, requested that I share my recipe for French Chilaquiles. Mexican food is one of the best cuisines for an anti-inflammatory diet because you can easily avoid gluten by opting for corn tortillas (never flour), eliminating dairy (by laying off the cheese and sour cream), and can get whole proteins in via rice and beans, even if you’re vegetarian. While France excels at virtually all cuisine, their Mexican food selection is lacking. I haven’t been able to find certain ingredients (chilis in adobo) so I've improvised below.


If you'd like to give this French-Mexican fusion dish a whirl, have at it. It's a little bit spicy and our new favorite breakfast.


Gut-Friendly French Chilaquiles for 2

What You'll Need:

- 4 organic eggs

- 1 organic yellow onion

- 1 cup of vegetable broth or bouillon

- 1 tbsp chili powder

- 1.5 cloves garlic

- 1 cup tomato sauce

- Vegan butter

- Extra Virgin Olive oil

- Cilantro

- Corn tortillas or Chips

- Non-Iodized Salt + Pepper

- Optional: Organic Curcumin


Step 1:

Onions, Garlic, Chili Powder

Chop your onion, garlic, and measure out the chili powder. Then add some olive oil (1-2 tbsp) to a pan to soften the onions for 5 minutes, before adding in the chili powder and fresh garlic, and mixing them for about thirty seconds. Optionally, you can add in a sprinkle of organic curcumin — which is extracted from Turmeric — for some anti-inflammatory support.

Note: Use fresh garlic, it is great for giving your immune system a boost and is extra flavorful.


Step 2:

Bouillon, Tomato Sauce

You'll need 3/4 cups of vegetable broth; I have been using organic vegetable bouillon. (The recipe technically calls for chicken broth, but why not save a chicken?) You will also need 1 cup of tomato sauce. You can use virtually any tomato sauce, but I used leftover diced tomatoes and added in some Italian tomato sauce with peppers to reach a full 8 oz.


Add them to the pan with your onions, garlic, and chili powder, and then bring the entire mixture to a simmer. Let it cook for ten minutes, stirring occasionally, then you can turn the heat off.


Step 3:

Start the Eggs

While your sauce simmers, get a second pan with a lid ready, and coat the bottom with either olive oil or vegan butter while it heats. Separate your organic eggs into two separate bowls and season them with salt and pepper. Pour the mixtures into the pan and cook them for two minutes, before covering and turning off the heat for two to three minutes.


Step 4:

Add the Chips

Purists can make their own chips from corn tortillas in the oven. Unfortunately, our oven isn't working right now! Instead, I like this brand of organic, gluten free, vegan chips with added spinach and kale. I add about half a bag, but they're fairly small. Then stir it around in the sauce until they're covered. Breakage is ok!


Step 5:

Add optional cheese

I never eat cheese, but Tom does! The recipe calls for queso fresco, but I just used this French cheese we got at a local grocer. I add the sauce and chips to a plate, then add the cheese to his, and add our eggs on top. Fresh cilantro is the cherry on top.


Step 6:

Eat

Presentation is not my strong suit, but it tastes amazing. Take your supplements with this breakfast! Right now, I am taking probiotics, vitamin C, vitamin D, and Zinc... just to name a few. Soon I'll re-resume my favorite skin vitamin by The Nue Co. called Skin Filter, and I have a shopping list of vitamins that I'd like to pick up that my doctor sent over.


Now that you've made yourself a yummy meal, read up on ways to infuse wellness into your workouts.

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