Indonesian Satay Beef w Resistant Starch Rice

My family background is Dutch-Indonesian so growing up my Oma (grandma) and Dad use to create the most amazing Indonesian dishes with pickled veg condiments. I wanted to recreate one of my favourite childhood recipes using a little less sugar than they did in their cooking and incorporate the new resistant starch rice I have been making at home for my gut. 

I am currently making pickled cucumber at home for my brother's birthday present so once I have a successful run I will share the recipe for this!

What the heck is resistant starch rice, you ask? 

For the people who just came for the satay recipe see below and for those of you who want to learn about resistant starch rice scroll to the bottom of this post and read on!

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Indonesian Beef 

Ingredients

  • 500g beef chuck steak, diced
  • 270ml coconut cream
  • 1/3 cup tamari sauce
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce or apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

Method

  1. Add all ingredients to your slow cooker, cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 7-8 hours. 

Resistant Starch Rice

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white rice
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil
  • 1 3/4 cups water

Method

  1. Bring water to a boil in a pot
  2. Add coconut oil to the pot followed by the rice
  3. Cover, lower to a simmer and cook for 20-25 minutes
  4. Let the rice cool and then chill in the fridge for at least 12 hours

Note: the cooling process is important in this recipe to make it work.


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Resistant Starch The Latest Gut Health Hack

Resistant starch is a total food hack or so to say gut "superfood" (geez, I hate that word it just seems to make things trendy and expensive) that has been around for a while but is now coming back into trend along with bone broth and sauerkraut.

Probiotics

We all often hear about probiotics and the important role they play in optimising our gut health. They help improve our digestive system, immune system, maintain healthy skin and weight, reduce stress/anxiety and well are just about linked to every process in our body. 

Probiotics are introduced into your body through food (especially fermented foods), supplements, mother's breast milk and the soil in which our food grows. Probiotics support and nourish the healthy gut flora we all want to live in our digestive tract as well as assist in producing more. 

I like to think of my gut as my own personal eco system which needs to be watered and fed regularly and daily. If you water and feed it correctly the good bugs grow healthy and strong and they flourish. However, you can water and feed it the wrong things (alcohol, processed foods, antibiotics, sugar) and when you do this you feed the bad bugs and bad bacteria allowing them to out grow the good. Just like in your garden when your plants aren't tended to they become over run by bugs this is exactly what happens to your gut.  

Prebiotics

So your probiotics feed your good healthy bacteria living in your upper digestive tract however they don't make it far enough down to feed the bacteria that lives inside your large intestine and colon. This is where your prebiotics come into play. Your prebiotics are indigestible substances that pass all the way through your gastrointestinal tract until they reach our large intestine which is where they get to work. They essentially act as food for our large intestine and colon gut flora. Rich prebiotic foods are your onions, garlic, leeks, Jerusalem artichokes, raw chicory root and dandelion leaf. 

However, you have to eat quite a lot of these prebiotic foods to really have a healthy large intestine and colon which is quite difficult when Jerusalem artichokes aren't really a major ingredient in most of our diets. This is where resistant starch comes to your rescue as one of the cheapest, easiest and most potent ways to quickly increase your prebiotic intake. Like the rest of the prebiotics it passes through the upper digestive tract without digesting until it reaches the large intestine. Which is where it stimulates healthy bacteria growth, increases fermentation and begins the production of short-chain fatty acids like butyrate. Which is an important process because these acids lower the pH of our bowels making them less liveable for nasty pathogens and unhealthy bacteria. Butyrate is also the food of choice for the cells which line your colon. 

Health Benefits of Resistant Starch

Three decades worth of studies have delved into the health benefits of resistant starch in humans as well as animals and the results were impressive. t has been shown to:

  • Increase the absorption of important minerals such as magnesium and calcium in your intestines
  • Decrease absorption of toxic and carcinogenic compounds
  • Positively affect microflora, particularly increasing bifidobacterium
  • Decrease overall blood glucose levels
  • Assist with insulin sensitivity 
  • Increase feelings of satiety

Increasing Resistant Starch Into Your Diet

The richest sources are raw potatoes, green bananas, oats, white beans, rice and lentils. If you read the CSIRO studies I linked previously you can see the grams of resistant starch each of these foods contains. 

Using the cooked to cool rice method as I have written above results in the cooling period turning some of the naturally digestible starches of the rice into resistant starches via a process called retrogradation.

Ease into it...

It is always a good idea to consult with your gp before making drastic changes to your health regime. However, I am a big believer in starting slowly and allowing your body to process its reaction to the changes you have made. When incorporating any pre and probiotic foods and supplements you should ease them into your diet as your gut will be working overtime to rid itself of all the bad bacteria currently residing in there and welcome all the good bacteria to its new home! A common detox response to incorporating pre and probiotics into your diet is to feel brain fogged, fatigued, have bouts of diarrhoea or constipation, gas, bloating and changes to your stools and how regularly you go. This is the result of your gut trying to rearrange all the bacteria now residing in your gastrointestinal tract and working out what to remove and what to keep.