What do all these foods have in common?

1) They are all yummy.

2) They are all foods that I like.

3) They are all in season and available at my local farmers market.

4) They are all in the same family: Nightshade Family

Some people have problems when eating those foods in the nightshade family and sadly, I am one of them.  From experience, it is the alkaloids in the nightshades that causes my arthritis to flare and my sore hands are the testament to that.  What does this mean?  That I seriously limit my intake of the three foods above and also eggplant…off-season.  While I lived in Alaska, I had nary a ripe tomato so while they are available in the market or from my own plants, I indulge during the season and deal with the stiffness and soreness in my hands.  The most difficult part of it all?  That I am 31 and have arthritis.  Darn that perfect genetic storm of Nana and Grandma!

In honor of my sore hands, I give you a recipe that I created yesterday:

Stuffed Pepper Soup aka Sore Hands Soup

1 onion, diced

1lb mild Italian sausage

2 sweet peppers, diced

1/2winter squash, your choice, diced

1 14oz can stewed tomatoes


Bay leaf

Vegetable bullion cube

2 cups cooked rice


In a large pot, warm a small amount of olive oil over low and slowly cook the onion to brown.   Add sausage and cook completely.  Add peppers and squash and heat to slightly softened.  Add can of tomatoes and 2 cans of water, bullion cube and the bay leaf.  Cook over medium for 1 hour to let flavours marry.  Turn off heat and add rice, stirring to mix and let sit for 10 minutes to soften rice and warm thru.  Serve and enjoy!

We LOVED this lunch and, despite my sore hands today, I’ll have the leftovers for my work dinner tonight…with a Ibuprofen/Acetaminophen chaser!