Archive for January, 2011

January 29, 2011

Rant about safe food

It has been a while since I had a good blog rant and it’s about time…

My day today started as I read a through a number of awfully sad reports on the state of GMO and the misguided USDA partnership with my favorite Goliath company Monsanto’s, seems that Whole Food Market (the leading Natural Food Store in the US) is also in bed with the monster, and somewhere along the way this trusted brand representing organic clean and safe foods gave into profits and has made a fortune duping it’s consumers selling GMO conventional crops under their all natural banner.

GMO food is terrifying for so many reasons: it is having detrimental effects on humans, water, soil, animals, air and ozone. Simply put allowing multinational companies like Monsantos and Dow to decide that their profits are more important than our lives is criminal, and furthermore these multinational’s have gone so far as to create legislation to protect their profits. Both the Canadian and the US government have been bought and they have turned a blind eye to human welfare for the mighty buck.

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January 25, 2011


If I were still in Cowtown I would soooo be here with bells on! Go Eat! Learn! Talk! Dance! Celebrate Local Food and the people bringing it to your plate! These events are so important in connecting people to their food sources. I am really so very thrilled to see all the thriving events focused on sustainable living in Calgary.  Tell your friends…

January 24, 2011

Tequila Sunrise and Texan Roosters

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Last weekend we broke out the propane turkey deep fryer, and invited some friends over for a Texan fry up. We thawed and seasoned Paul, Ringo and George (our most newly departed Roosters). Two of the boys got a Franks Red Injection and the last Beatle got a garam masala rub down and all of them hit the corn oil, in rotation with french fries and corn fritters. This was our first success at poultry frying (anyone who attended our Easter ’10 TexasTurkey Mishap knows how earned this success was!). The night was wonderful the birds a hit and in fact the chickens disappeared so fast I didn’t even have a chance to snap a picture of them in all their golden glory. I did however roast another rooster the following night and part of the leftovers from him became maybe the best chicken stew I have ever made, and the rest went into this saucy smoky southern dish, assembled with left over basmati brown rice and rooster.

A few years ago I made some spice blend sets for Christmas presents and my favorite blend “Chili Hot Hot” snuck it’s way into many many a dish after that holiday season. The other day I was inspired to create another batch chili blend and I came up with what I am calling Tequila Sunrise. Using some of the most punchy bright and fresh organic spices  and made a chipotle, paprika, chili, garlic lemon rub with a hit of toasted cumin. Yum. The blend is kick your ass hot and I went a little far on it’s virgin run; but this is what I threw together and it was smoking good! You could and likely should (unless your a masochist like me) keep the this toned down version:

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January 13, 2011

Mountain Morning Fuel

It has been dumping snow here for 3 days, not too cold out but epic amounts of snowfall… feet and feet and feet. So we need some good fuel to keep us going as just walking out to collect eggs in the morning take just a little more effort when the snow is above your knees!

I don’t intend to insult anyone by attempting to tell you how to make oatmeal, but what I did want to share is the combination of toppings we enjoyed today and just how I incorporated them so they were hearty and oh so yummy.

The above oatmeal is full of warm aromatics; vanilla sugar cane, cinnamon, maple syrup, currants dates, hazelnuts and hemp seeds. These days I have been using an organic quick oatmeal and I cooked 1 1/3 cup of it as the package directs with water and salt. What I did differently is I added about 6 pitted dates finely sliced along with 1/2 cup of dried currants into the boiling the water and oats, along with an extra 1/2 cup of fresh milk. Cooking the dried fruit a little softened it up and they were buttery smooth and juicy. I also cooked in about 1 tbsp of cinnamon and 1 tbsp of cane sugar ; which I infused in a 1 gallon jar with a whole vanilla bean (I have been using for everything from tea to baking). Once the oats were cooked I dished it up and topped it with hazelnuts, and hemp seeds and a good glug of maple syrup. Yum, so very warm, so very fast, and a great thing to eat before a morning snowshoe.

January 9, 2011

Beans, Barley and Lentils

The last few night I have been raiding my legume jars in search for healthy hearty meals and I created some pretty yummy, stick to the ribs dinners, perfect for dark winter nights.

Lentils and Rice

This dish was really earthy with the bright flavors of cardamom and toasted cumin, hits of garlic and citrus. When making this I used left over basmati brown rice which I often cook in over sized batched so I have extra on hand for soups and stir fry or just to entice the dog to clean her plate. Start in a deep cast iron pan by browning 1/2 of a yellow onion and 3 diced carrots in a good glug of oil along with about 2 tbsp of whole cumin seeds and sea salt. Allow the onion to brown then add 1 cup of French lentils, coat them with oil and start to simmer them in 2 cups of water. To this add 1 tbsp cardamom, 1 tbsp garlic granules, black pepper, and a squeeze of lemon juice and apple cider vinegar. Simmer this on med-low for 25 minutes, adding more water as necessary. Once the lentils are cooked add 1.5 cups of cooked rice and S+P along with 1 tbsp of nutritional yeast, a squeeze of Braggs and a little pad of butter and continue cooking for 5 more minutes. In a separate small pan toast some almond slices seasoned with a little S+P and a pinch of garlic powder. Add toasted almonds to each serving and enjoy.

Barley Risotto

My wonderful “sister in law” sent us a big ‘ol case of wine for Christmas and the lovely assortment included some white wines, which inspired me to make risotto,

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