Archive for October, 2013

October 29, 2013

albino beet harvest

pickled albino beets

This year I grew for the first time Seed Savers Albino Beets which I got from the Urban Hometeading Store (which I adore!) on a visit through Northern Alberta in the snowy early spring. I was eager to try to pickle these white beets and see how tidy the process might be without pink hands and a crime scene kitchen clean up. So far I have really enjoyed cooking with them. Adding albino beets to many soups and stews for that great fresh beet flavor without odd tinting of my meals, or the mess that goes with traditional beets. These look an awful lot like salad turnips, but are sweet and tender.

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October 25, 2013

ginger beef

gunger beef

This is the real deal my friends. If you are from Calgary you know what I am talking about when I say Ginger Beef, this is a homegrown Western Chinese classic, born in “cowtown” Alberta, this dish can be really hard to find all over the place. I don’t think I have actually eaten ginger beef  since I was about 16, but tonight I made a killer super authentic ginger beef, that blew my family away, and my guy is a total ginger beef connoisseur, he claimed it was the best ever, and I totally agree! I made it gluten free and of course the beef was grass raised grass finished happy healthy beef, I also made mine super heavy on the garden veg.

Now straight up this is not a easy dish to bang out in a pinch, it took hours of marinating and a double fry, with a wok stir fry finish. Lots of steps, but if your miles away from a decent Chinese meal and your family is aching for a fix, this is the answer. Pair this with my vegan hot and sour soup, and a batch of mu shu pork noodles and you are  off to the races… just need some fortune cookies to finish the night off.

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October 19, 2013

sweet potato skillet pie

sweet potato skillet pie

This recipe is the origin of so many amazing adventures in my life. I recall always disliking Thanksgiving dinner as a child… I didn’t eat meat, I hate stuffing, dry potatoes arg, overcooked brussel sprouts… all bad things. One year my aunt brought to dinner something that changed my life forever… a baked mashed sweet potato dish covered in sugar coated pecans… finally FLAVOR for a holiday meal! I started making it myself as a teenager and really amped up the seasonings, I played with maple coated nut toppings and loved it all. It soon became the dish I always brought to the festive meals… that and the turkey later on, as I would seek out sustainable happy turkey farms and drive for hours and pay top dollar to deliver a raw fresh bird to whom ever was hosting the big family dinner that year, just so I could indulge in turkey and gravy along with my sweet potato pie!

This sweet potato pie dish welcomed me to the world of sharing food with folks, presenting a truly stand out dish and soaking up the oohs and ahhs. From there I was hooked on nourishing people with really tasty foods! Fast forward many years and when I was opening my second bakery and was developing vegan and gluten free recipes I decided one day to plop a couple cups of holiday left over sweet potato pie into the mixer… that moment the famous Pure vegan Sweet Potato Pow cookie was born. Here is a revised version of that killer cookie recipe and a little more of the story, but back to the pie…

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October 19, 2013

green tahini dressing on falafel salad

green tahini dressing on falafel salad

OMG my fear of all things white and creamy have had me avoiding tahini most of my life, admittedly  I still do when eating out as so often it is mixed with yogurt which I still can’t manage to eat… But the other night I made a killer batch of homemade falafels with sesame seeds and all sorts of crunchy deliciousness, and imagined the dinner needing a bit of a dressing to appease my sweet heart who drowns his falafel in all sorts of white sauce. This killer green tahini dressing was born and I just have to share it with you all, because it is so very good!

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October 18, 2013

lactose fermented hot sauce

fermented hot sauce

Oh this might be even better than the lactose fermented pickles my family LOVES. I have been longing & trying to make this hot sauce for two years. Making this both a long time coming, and so worth the wait. This stuff is fabulous.

I am getting sucked into the world of fermenting, it’s slippery slope I have to warn you!

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October 16, 2013

asian lake fish soup

asian fish soup

I have a huge backlog of recipes to get through, boy the harvest time is busy!

Last week my sweetie came home after a long day of fishing with the boys with 2 lovely and large fresh lake Dolly Vardens, which as I understand are land locked salmon, they are a little oilier than salmon and even yummier. I don’t buy fish ever, if you want to know why check this out. I miss eating fish a whole lot so when we go fishing and come home with fresh caught lake fish I sure try to make the most of all of it! I also decided to fillet these lovely fish myself, thankfully youtube guided me through the process and I can’t believe how much easier it was to do than I imagined. First night I oven roasted 1 fillet with a thick coat of grainy mustard, maple syrup and garlic, yum! The I started the fish stock. I boiled down the spines and tails and all the boney bits and fins with some onion and garlic all night and much of the next day. After straining the result was a deeply rich fish stock to build this aromatic Asian inspired soup with.

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October 8, 2013

scalloped squash + such

 

squash gratin

I was craving scalloped potatoes the other day, and as I still haven’t dug my potatoes out yet I decided to make a hybrid harvest spin on the comfort food I was aching for. I used rich nutty chickpea flour to create a thick garlic sauce to ooze into the layers of squash, onions, rainbow chard and carrots. I picked up a few packs of really amazing goat feta the other day and blended that with blanched chard to create a couple lasagna inspired layers in this dish. As I was making it I was reminded of that killer vegan cashew “cheese sauce” I made a while back, and how easily that could be used to make this dish both vegan and gluten free!

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October 5, 2013

pickle palooza

pickle-palooza-2013 vallican BC

Our valleys 2nd annual Canning & Preserving Festival is finally here! Tomorrow Sunday October 6th 10-2 @ Vallican Whole, Slocan BC. There will be canning contests for best preserves in 4 categories, a lively jar swap, experts demoing a number of preserving techniques, local farmers and producers selling their bounty. There will be food for the whole family and canning crafts for the kids! If your in the Kootenays and your keen to learn, stock up, or compete come on down and join us for this Canning Jamming Extravaganza! For more info go here.

October 4, 2013

apple cider vinegar + hard cider

apple cider vinegar making

This is a very exciting harvest time for us, we just picked a truckload (literally) of apples from a number of different friends properties over the past week, and yesterday I loaded them all up and set off for the “Apple Jack” in Brilliant. William has been pressing apples with his home made hydraulic apple press sine the 60’s. He tossed and chopped and hauled and mashed and pressed and screened 25 Gallons of fresh raw unpasteurized valley apple juice for me and my friends. What an event! I didn’t bring my camera and sooo wished I had! The juice is divine, but I had other plans for this nectar…

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