And the Jars Begin… Real Food Forager

And The Jars Begin...A Collection of Real Food JourneysThis series is a collection of personal Real Food Journey stories.  I find it inspirational to read about the stories of others who are making a similar journey as I am.  I hope you enjoy them, too!

Today I have the pleasure of sharing our first And the Jars Begin… real food journey story with you.  I’m so glad my friend and fellow blogger, Jill, was willing to be my first participant.  I know you’ll love getting to know her more and reading about her journey.

And the Jars Begin… Real Food Forager

Jill Tieman of Real Food Forager

Jill Tieman of Real Food Forager

Name: Jill Tieman
City: Long Island, NY
Blog: Real Food Forager
Favorite style of jar (i.e., quart mason jar, pint size jars, etc.): wide mouth pint mason with the white plastic screw on lids
How long eating real food: 7 years
Favorite traditional food: salmon roe

What was your diet like when you were growing up? Decent — my mother was always searching for new diets to improve health, so we ate lots of veges and home cooked food.

Did you eat a Standard American Diet (SAD)? There were certainly some items that were SAD and also lots of SAD items from the health food stores.

Any traditional food practices, such as including organ meats, fermented veggies, homemade broth, etc.?
When I was really young I remember my mother making chicken soup with the feet. We would even eat the flesh from the center of the foot! We bought chickens from a butcher around the corner from us and I suspect he had chickens in the back. I remember him holding the bird over a bunsen burner to get the last of the feathers off.
My mother also bought fresh fish and I mean fresh — right off the boats in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn. Back then, there were still fish mongers coming around each week with fish on ice, right off the truck. My mother bought fish eggs from him as well.
She also made liver every week. She was not the best cook so that was hard to eat…

How did you first learn about the Weston A. Price Foundation/Nourishing Traditions? I am a clinical nutritionist/chiropractor and I seem to remember a lecture given by Dr. Sherry Tenpenny at one of those conferences (IAACN) where she mentioned WAP and gave the website. But I actually had been using the SCD for a sub group of patients and through reading more about gut dysbiosis I came to Jordan Rubin’s book and heard about WAP there as well. Through some of the list servs I was on about SCD, there was some mention of Dr. Campbell McBride’s GAPS diet and I noticed she was speaking at the WAPF conference (I think it was 2006 or 2007). I went to the conference to hear her present the GAPS diet for the first time and had a life changing experience.

How and when did you start implementing these principles in your own diet? I had been using SCD for some patients and also in my home since 2005. I followed the advice I give my patients: take several weeks or even months to get your pantry changed over, learn the new recipes and way of cooking and get some homemade food in the freezer. Then start the diet very strictly.

What was the easiest part of the transition for you? Getting off all the junk from the health food store. I really love not having to read labels anymore.

What was/is the most challenging? The most challenging is still keeping grain and dairy free and trying not to be too obsessive about additives when I am not eating at home.

What advice would you give to someone who is just starting out on their own real food journey? Take one step at a time and when you master that, move forward. And don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s a journey, not a destination.

Grain Free Lasagne

Grain-Free Lasagne

Jill’s Go Grain Free Class

I thought that as long as Jill was sharing her real food journey with us, it would be the perfect time to ask her a few questions about the new Go Grain Free class that she is currently launching.  You can read my review of the class if you missed it.

Why did you decide to create your online class “Go Grain Free”?
Over the years I’ve accumulated many good recipes that are made from scratch and from good traditional foods as well as being grain-free. I created the class to share many basic and advanced recipes that fit well with any healing diet such as SCD or GAPS as well as ancestral diets like Paleo or Primal. People who are on a low carb diet will also get a lot from this class.

What skills do you hope participants of your class will walk away with?
There are many skills to learn when you are starting to cook with real food. From learning how to handle a whole chicken to basic condiments made with good fats and oils to baked goods made with coconut and nut flours. Watching the videos really helps to see how a batter should look or how easy it can really be.

What encouragement can you offer to those who are trying to heal with a grain-free diet?
Start with small steps and move forward as soon as you master something. It takes weeks to months to get the basics under your belt. Once that is accomplished, you can continue to move forward with different foods and recipes. If you look at it as a lifestyle, it becomes more manageable. Many people have done this with great results — and you can do it too.

Thanks for sharing your story and a little bit about your class with us, Jill!

If you want to enroll in Jill’s new class, click the link below.  Be sure to enter NOGRAINS to get an additional $20 off.

Register for the Go Grain-Free Cooking Class!


Share Your Own Story

If you would like to contribute your story to the And the Jars Begin… collection, click here for directions on how to do so.  I look forward to reading your story!

Disclaimer: There are affiliate links in this post.  If you purchase this online class, I will earn a small commission.  Thank you for supporting my site!

Photo credits: Real Food Forager

This post is part of Allergy Free Wednesday, Real Food WednesdaySimple Lives ThursdayEat Make Grow ThursdayKeep It Real ThursdayFight Back FridayFreaky FridaySunday School, Monday Mania.


  1. Thanks for sharing, Jill. It is always so interesting to find out how others started on the traditional food journey and what motivated them!


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