Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Recipes for the Great Turning: Supporting Our Bodies in Times of Nuclear Exposure

Hello! I was so appreciative for Dori Midnight's information on supporting the body during times of radioactive exposure and how generously she's been sending that information forth, I'm posting it here in hopes that even more people see it and in turn pass it along. You can also read this same post on her Midnight Apothecary blog.

Herbalist Sean Donahue has also written a post entitled Updated Thoughts on Radiation Exposure on his Greenman Ramblings blog: Also, those interested in learning more about seaweed can read Ryan Drum's writings, such as Medicinal Uses of Seaweed and Sea Vegetables for Food and Medicine at his website:

Alright folks, here it is:

Recipes for the Great Turning by Dori Midnight

"To bring us courage and nourishment, as well as support our bodies in times of nuclear exposure, we can turn to our plant friends, our human friends, the kitchen, and our own inner resources. The ingredients and recipes below contain powerful medicine to help our immune systems cope with the toxins we ingest and breathe daily, and specifically with radiation. They are simple, relatively affordable, and effective ways we can feed ourselves and our loved ones in belly, heart, and spirit.

Seaweed and its harvest. For gorgeous photos of
Ironbound Island Seaweed's harvests, click here. ~dana


1. SEAWEED: eat Nori, put Wakame, Kombu, and Hijiki in your soups and stews, make crunchy Kelp brittle with it. The iodine in kelp helps protect your thyroid and other glands from radioactive uptake and in general is one of the most magical, medicinal foods on earth, grown by the O.F. (that's the Original Farmer also known as the Sea!) (for resources on where to get seaweed see bottom of post)

2. MISO: good medicine full of live cultures, amino acids, minerals, and protein. I'd recommend making a big pot this week, having a bowl everyday and feeding it to all your friends, neighbors, and weirded-out co-workers (like one time when I brought my lunch to work and someone said it looked like a terrarium). Recipe follows below.

3. MUSHROOMS: strengthen your immune system with some Shiitake mushrooms, sauteed or in soups. Mushrooms are the genius healers of the forest- they know how to bring everything (on earth and in the tiny microcosm of your body) back into balance.

4. Eat vegetables, especially DAIKON radishes and BURDOCK root- stick them in your soup too or make a shredded salad (recipe below). Daikon has been used for drawing out radiation, post nuclear fall out- it's cooling and detoxifying. These will make your liver fall madly in love with you.

5. WATER: DRINK it. lots of it. take BATHS in Epsom salt and Baking soda (1 lb of salt, with a bit of baking soda 2x week). Cry. (see #8)

6. IMMUNE support: do the things you know boost your immune system- sleep well, eat Garlic and Vitamin C rich foods, and go easy on the sugar, please.

7. FERMENT: buy or make homemade Sauerkrauts & Kim chi or trade with someone who does. This weekend some friends and I had a fermenting party and made buckets of crunchy Apple, Juniper berry and Cabbage kraut, pickled Ginger beets, and spicy Kim chi. It's fun to massage vegetables in community. These lively foods have the probiotics your gut needs and wants and are deeply nourishing and restorative. My favorite (and very roughly used) cookbook on this subject: Wild Fermentation by Sandor Katz

8. LOVE: send prayers, love, healing thoughts for those who need it most. Instead of freaking out or shutting down, let your anger, fear, and grief flow- it's what makes us human and feel connected to what's going on in the world right now. Crying is a potent way to detox, friends. (more exercises and practices coming soon on my blog)

9. HERBS: if you want to get herbal, some great allies are Nettle tea, Cilantro (eat a lot of it or take a tincture- it helps draw heavy metals out ), and Milk thistle (helps your liver process toxins). Also Yarrow Environmental Essence from FES is a beautiful formula to support the body in environmental disasters. And let's not forget nervines and adaptogens in times of stress: herbs like Passionflower, Tulsi, Catnip, Chamomile and Oatstraw in teas or tinctures to help us keep calm and grounded.


Magical Medicinal Miso Soup
Saute one Onion, sliced thin til translucent. Add water, Seaweed of choice (I like Kombu and Wakame), Shiitake mushrooms (dried or fresh), Burdock root, Carrots, and any other hearty roots you like. Simmer for 25 minutes. I like to add shredded or sliced Ginger near the end, so it's strong, and some Garlic. You can also add greens, like Kale or Spinach. Because you don't want to boil your Miso, I usually put a large dollop of Miso paste in my bowl and then pour the broth on top to dissolve it. Drink bowls and offer bowls to all your loved ones and neighbors, kiddos and pets, family and friends.

Get your Daikon
Easy Shredded Salad
Shred 1 Carrot and 1 Daikon radish
Mix with Sesame oil and a little Umeboshi vinegar (also a great medicine!), Sesame seeds, whatever fresh herbs you've got on hand (I love Mint or Cilantro), and a little Tamari. Eat and feel alive and well thanks to the plants, the sun, the water and the farmers.

Sesame Kelp Brittle
Another seaweed recipe courtesy of the folks at She Sells Seaweed, given to me by my friend Angie.

~1/2 Cup Brown Rice Syrup
~1/4 Cup Olive Oil
~Dash of Shoyu soy sauce
~1 cup Sesame seeds
~1/2 cup crushed Almonds
~1/4-3/4 cup or to your liking of finely crushed Kelp (set oven on low heat and bake kelp for 10 min or until crisp and grind in food processor)
~2-3 tsp of fresh finely chopped Ginger root

Heat syrup, oil and soy sauce in small sauce pan. When mixture begins to foam up add seeds, nuts, kelp, and ginger, and stir thoroughly. Line a large cookie sheet w/parchment. Spread mixture onto parchment and then cover with another piece of parchment and roll out flat w/rolling pin (or glass or jar!). Remove top parchment.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes-- and then for the last few minutes check every minute until golden. Remove from oven and rip away parchment after 5-10 minutes. Break into pieces and enjoy!!

East Coast (U.S.):
She Sells Seaweed
Ironbound Island Seaweed

West Coast (U.S.):
Rainbow Grocery
Mendocino Sea Vegetable Co.
Rising Tide Sea Vegetables

South River Miso "

Dori Midnight
community folk healing + magic + apothecary

...and one more recipe:

Immune soup/spread
Recipe by Rosemary Gladstar

Using miso paste and herbs, you can create a soup base that can be stored in the fridge long-term. This is especially nice to have on hand when you aren’t feeling well and don’t have tons of energy to put into cooking.

½ cup Miso
1 tblsp fresh Ginger, grated or chopped finely
3 cloves fresh Garlic
1 tblsp fresh Turmeric, grated or chopped finely (optional)
pinch of Cayenne

Mix together. To make a soup, just put a spoonful of the paste into a bowl, cover with hot water, and stir. (Remember that the good living organisms in miso will be killed if you boil them.) If you want, you can add sliced scallions to the soup. You can also add the paste to a broth, after you sauté and/or simmer onions, garlic, mushrooms, greens, etc. in water.

To make a spread for crackers, bread, and vegetables, you can just add tahini (sesame paste) to the miso herb paste. Local honey can also be added.


  1. This all looks so good. If one is having a normal pregnancy- all okay to eat? Thanks

  2. Good question! I've just asked someone this question and am waiting to hear back. If anyone has information on this, please comment!

  3. I've received word that the suggestions written above are okay during pregnancy. Feel free to check in with a midwife, nurse, doctor, herbalist, or other healthcare provider. And if anyone has additional thoughts on these, please share!