Kids love jelly! Adults love jelly! Your gut loves jelly when it is gut-healing jelly!
I don’t love the packet jelly available in the shop – it is full of sugar or artificial sweeteners, colours, flavours and preservatives. These have such a negative effect on us all, but kids are usually more susceptible to these things. Or perhaps the effects are just more obvious as they less capacity to hide their dysregulation. Common reactions to colours, preservatives and flavours in our house include itchy throat, headache, nausea, crying, anger, yelling, itchy skin, hives, and hyperactivity. These can last for days…or they can take some time to show, making it hard to pin point the contributing factor/food. To avoid this, we make our own jelly. It isn’t hard, though it can take a little time, so we make a big batch and keep it in the fridge or freezer for the times we would like a sweet treat. Like most of my recipes, this makes a lot, so don’t double it!
Gelatin is the ingredient used to set the jelly and is part of the reason that this jelly is gut-healing. It is made from the bones and cartilage of animals, so look for a gelatin that is from free range or grass-fed, organic animals. The benefits of gelatin include that it is a good source of protein, providing all of the essential amino acids, like glycine, that provide the building blocks for the tissues and organs in our bodies, neurotransmitters, strengthen the gut lining and support lowering inflammation throughout the body.
Glycine is used to help improve digestive, joint, cardiovascular, cognitive and skin health. In the gastrointestinal tract, glycine supports gut-healing and optimal gut-health by encouraging a healthy intestinal lining. This in turn supports a healthy microbiome as the ‘soil’ is perfect for the beneficial bacteria and yeasts to grow on. For those who are sensitive to salicylates, glycine has been shown to improve salicylate metabolism.
Glycine also improves mood and reduces anxiety as it is an inhibitory neurotransmitter. This means that it soothes the nervous system (and anxiety) by decreasing stimulating or stress chemicals and increasing happy, calming chemicals. Here’s one for the parents – research has demonstrated that glycine aids sleep initiation. Yep, it helps your kids go to sleep more easily!
Gelatin + the soothing qualities of honey, ginger, turmeric and the herbal tea make this jelly a soothing, calming, gut-healing delight for everyone to enjoy.
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- 1 litre filtered water
- 5-10cm piece of ginger, grated
- 5-10cm piece of fresh turmeric, grated
- 6-10 organic chamomile or peppermint teabags (or fresh mint leaves from the garden) or juice from 5-10 lemons (to suit your taste)
- 1 cup grass-fed gelatin (good brands include I quit sugar, Wholefood Pantry, or Great Lakes)
- 1 cup local raw honey
- Put teabags (or mint leaves), grated ginger, turmeric, and water in a saucepan and bring to a gentle boil on the stove. (If you are using lemon, add the juice when you add the honey.)
- Turn heat off and leave to steep until desired strength of flavour is reached. (Note: make it stronger than you may like as the flavour dilutes when you add honey and it sets.)
- Strain ginger, turmeric and tea bags out of the saucepan. (Don’t forget to save the liquid!)
- Put strained liquid back into the saucepan (but not on the heat), add honey (and lemon if using) and stir until dissolved.
- Gradually add gelatin into the liquid, stirring or whisking gently until the gelatin is all dissolved. Try not to whisk too vigorously so that you get froth on the top or you’ll have fluffy bits on the top of your set jelly.
- Pour into a flat dish that is lined with If You Care baking paper or similar.
- Put into fridge and wait impatiently until it is set!
- Cut into squares or use a shape cutter and enjoy!
Lasts for up to three weeks in an air-tight container in the fridge.