As I spent the past few years covering the culinary world in San Diego, the name Quinn Wilson kept popping up.
I needed to find out more about this woman and what she did so I resolved to track her down. It turns out Ms. Wilson has a very cool business called Balanced and Bright where she produces uber-healthy beef bone broth that has healing properties and is versatile enough to use in just about any cooking application.
Quinn brought some of her broth over recently and we did some tasting and talking about bone broth.
Tell me a bit about your background and what led you to this endeavor.
I have been fascinated by food since a very young age. By 18 I loved being in the kitchen and I could cook pretty well for a teenager. You would think all of this would have led to a culinary career, but I actually ended up as an Interior Designer for almost 10 years. Around 2008, I became a Farm Chef for Suzie’s Farm, which then turned into a full time job on the farm. Shopping locally and seasonally had always made sense to me, but once I was introduced to a traditional way of eating, the game completely changed. I’ve spent the last few years learning and applying as much as I possibly can of the subject. That led me to start making bone broth three years ago. Once I saw the positive effects that drinking bone broth had on my body, I knew I was going to start a business making it.
Bone broth as a healing agent goes way back, can you give me a brief history of it and common uses in the past?
It goes back to using the whole animal. In all societies’, rich and poor, in every part of the world, you see bone broth as a staple in the diet. Because of its nutritional properties, bone broth helps to heal arthritis, stomach issues and autoimmune problems, it inhibits infections, seals the gut and speeds up healing after any sort of trauma. The Japanese invented MSG in 1908 and by 1947 General Foods issued a statement that said, “soon all natural flavors will be chemically synthesized.” Since a chemically synthesized “flavor” cube was much faster for your average housewife to cook a meal with, we began to veer away from the traditional way of making a slow simmered, nutritionally dense broth. Broth has been referred to as Jewish Penicillin and is why we have all been fed chicken noodle soup when we’re sick.
You use bones from small local farm, pasture raised cattle, how does this make a difference?
Buying local matters because I am able to know where the meat is coming from, what it ate and how it was raised. I also literally know my farmer. The same guy that raised and cared for the cattle from beginning to end is the same guy handing me my order when I pick it up. When a cow is allowed to graze in pasture, they ingest more beneficial nutrients than cows that have been fed corn. All of this results in a healthier animal, healthier meat and ultimately a healthier bone broth.
Would organic chicken bones produce similar results, other than tasty broth?
Yes. You can make broth from any animal that was properly raised. If it has bones you can make broth. I have made a lot of chicken broth and, personally, I prefer beef broth; it tends to have more flavoring. I’m also working on a project with Tommy Gomes for a fish stock for Catalina Offshore Products.
You add more ingredients to your broth– what are you adding?
Balanced & Bright’s bone broth contains filtered water, ginger, apple cider vinegar and an aromatic spice that I am keeping a secret for now.
Can you share some of the benefits you and others have experienced personally from your bone broth?
The first thing to happen is your hair, skin and nails really take to it. Within two weeks, the skin on my hands became shiny and supple. Then my hair started to grow faster than normal. This is all due to the gelatin and collagen in the broth. I was in an accident when I was 10 and lost a couple of teeth. I’ve spent the last 25 years having surgeries for my implants and three years ago my implants began to fail. Once I started drinking the bone broth, the pain completely went away and my dentist was shocked by how strong and healthy the bone in the grafted area became.
Order online at www.balancedandbright.com. They have a pickup location in Encinitas and door-to-door delivery for an extra charge. Also be sure to check out Quinn and her broth March 22 at 11 a.m. at Whole Foods in Encinitas.