Archive for ‘Uncategorized’

October 5, 2015

EXCITING NEWS! eating with sole is back!

new-tricycle-acres-logos-W

… and better than ever. I have launched a brand new website; Tricycle Acres and this is the new home of all these SOLE-FOOD recipes! I have starting sharing recipes again (after a year away) and the new site is better than ever!

Bare with me, as migrating all the old recipes over will take some time. I will keep this live until everything is transfer, and then eatingwithSOLE will be no more.

So please join me at www.tricycleacres.com

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September 14, 2014

pickled caulifower

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A growing favorite in our family is pickled cauliflower! It is so versatile as an addition to meals and snacks! I have used it in the winter in salads, samosa filling, and in salad rolls.

Pickling cauliflower is no different than any other pickled veggie, aside from beets.

Sterilize jars, lids and rings in boiling water, then you can keep the jars hot and clean in your oven set to 225 while you prep everything else. It’s really important to have a open clean work area for canning, and it’s great to have everything you need ready to go.

In a large pot boil brine:

4 cups water

3 3/4 cups apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup course sea salt

Slice cauliflower into small florets.

In each clean hot jar place

2 garlic pieces

1 tsp pickling spice (here is my homemade blend)

add and arrange cauliflower into jars so they are snug and neat

top each jar with 2 more garlic pieces

then pour hot brine into each jar to bring the fluid up so that everything sits 1/4″ below the last jar thread.

wipe the edge of the jars clean with a hot cloth and seal with lid and process (in hot water bath canner) for 15 minutes

Ta Da! Now you have pickled cauliflower which will be divine come winter time.

Enjoy!

June 21, 2014

new growth

 

heart kootenay food

Hello my loyal readers and SOLE Foodies! I have a new adventure underway that I am keen to share with you all, something from my heart.

You may have noticed my absence over the past few months, I have been busy dealing with some curve balls life has thrown our way, and busy in the gardens planting, weeding and dreaming. I was struggling to find time to blog / photograph all the new recipes I have been creating, BUT I have finally created a way to continue to work on building a strong an thriving local food economy while still sharing recipes from my food shed with you all. So here it is, the best of both worlds…

I have recently launched a http://www.kootenayfood.com a project so dear to my heart. I am so impassioned to support my farming friends and neighbors, and share with eaters the message of real food. SOLE Food! After Farm Food Fork (the conference I have been working on since last fall) It was determined I needed to create a place for eaters to find farmers and homesteaders to source inputs, and share ideas and events. The website has been an exciting undertaking, and just the other night I added an element to the website which brings it full circle for me.

THE SEASONAL FORK | A weekly-ish guide to what is abundant in my Kootenay foodshed, along with 2 recipes for that weeks flushing crop; one for fresh eating  and one for putting up for another day! I will be drawing on my years of seasonal recipes, and of course creating new ones. So I hope you will join me at http://www.kootenayfood.com/dig-in/fork/

 

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March 18, 2014

farm food fork

FarmFoodForkHi Folks, This post come with apologizes for my lag on the  blogging front over the last couple months… I have been pouring every waking hour into building my regions local food shed, and have undertaken a huge food project! Which will roll out in just 2.5 short weeks! OMG! I hope this will be a valid absentee slip, and I promise right after this event I will be in the throws of wild harvested recipes and spring abundance again! I can already taste the morels and the nettles and the buckwheat shoots... Until then we are enjoying meaty dishes with frozen kale and pesto too, pickled and fermented goodness and never ending carrots and potatoes. My daughter has been cooking a lot and we have taken to “mystery box dinner challenges” and “pressures tests”, which she is acing! I’ll share those when I have a minute. Until then I am doing good work, and hope you’ll all be patient with me. You can check out what I have been up to here at farmfoodfork.com

February 13, 2014

chocolate brownie teaser

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So here I made these killer gluten free deeply chocolate espresso brownies, adapted from a brownie recipe I had been playing with for some time. I tweaked it just right. covered it with a thick slather of espresso chocolate gnache and the brownies disappeared ever so quickly. Almost as quickly as my recipe notes! I have actually lost this recipe, and I have been hunting for nearly two weeks… nearly two weeks of no blog posts (for shame) wasted on not posting this recipe. Instead tonight I am posting a tease, just a picture. One day soon I am sure I will find my notes and will revise this entry (I hope ).

Until then I am so sorry for my lack of posting, there has been so much I have wanted to share lately too, but between my new LED lighting adaptions, which make the most lovely meals look lack luster and the all round general exhaustion I feel at the end of the day, after working day and night at some HUGE regional food security projects that involve multiple event planning, web development and oodles of graphic design… whew, I am nearly too pooped to blog (for the first time ever). My most sincere apologies, I will be back at it full on soon. I promise.

December 11, 2013

Kitchen Aid killed my holiday baking :(

appliances

I have a sad story to tell you all…

Remember last year when I was swooning over my new fancy birthday oven? My sweetie bought me a really really nice convection oven last year and for at least 2 months I was head over heals in love with my new range and all it’s fancy features. The honeymoon was over when the back burner stopped working and I was taken aback that the quality of this product was so low that I had to have a technician out so soon after my purchase.  Within a week of that burner failing the shatter incident happened, where a teeny tiny bottle fell on my stove and it shattered into a million pieces 😦 TRAGEDY. I was out of pocket a few really big bills, and started living in total fear of breaking another cook-top. I have become OCD, and in fact my new kitchen design features no cabinets above the stove, no storage what so ever, to prevent another shattering if you can believe it. Imagine redesigning your kitchen to lose cupboard space around the fear that your stove will break again.

Just the other day, just as the temperature started to drop my urge to bake for warmth was building when I noticed the clock display was blank on my oven…

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November 28, 2013

cornbread wife saver

wife saver with corn bread

I am pretty sure you all are familiar with the dish “wife saver” we lovingly call it wife beater around here because it is pretty “white-bread-trashy”, why do folks love it so? My mom used to make this on Christmas morning once in a while, with SPAM if you can believe it, and my sweeties grandma makes it pretty often for brunch; white bread (crusts off) layered with ham and orange cheese soaked in egg and topped with corn flakes and more processed cheese! I tried once to make a really fancy version of this for a brunch, I used baguette, smoked bacon, roasted garlic, fancy french cheeses and even a bechamel sauce with fresh herbs, I loved it but my guy was missing all the trash factor, seriously. He told me not to mess with his wife beater, and for the last 8 or so years I have complied, until the other day that is… My daughter and I made a big batch of chili and she whipped up some corn bread skillets using our families favorite recipe (with the substitution  of corn flour for spelt flour). By day 3 we were over the corn bread and the chili, and I kinda forgot about half a skillet of corn bread for just long enough for it to start to dry out, and that is when it came to me; corn bread wife saver! It was worth a go, and I am so happy I tried it and the whole family LOVED this version.

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September 24, 2013

harvest wedding desserts

wedding dessert

Please excuse my absence over the past while, our friends equinox country wedding has taken over my culinary life for a time. I had the great pleasure of baking all of the desserts for their local harvest feast, along with the wedding cake, and some lovely condiments to go along with the exceptional charcuterie table, whole hog roast and the stunning seasonal dinner Chris Cho of Ayden Kitchan and Bar rolled.

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July 5, 2013

shattered!

shattered ceramic cooktop

So this is why I haven’t posted in some time 😦

I dropped a tiny little vase on my new slide in kitchen aid convection oven that I have been enjoying and loving for a wee 6 months. TRAGEDY!

It just so happened to break the night before I served a meal for 12… no big deal right? Currently I am feeding 8 two time a day, with no stove.

I took one giant step back in my kitchen cook-ability, back to the fire pit.. which is ok I did that for months when we first arrived here, but still it’s heart breaking. Good thing we just got the cob oven fired up and are trying to figure out how to cook well in it. I have the old BBQ and my faithful Instapot, and one day soon and a zillion dollars later the cooktop will be replaced.

Is this crazy or what, the salesman told me when I was shopping for the perfect convection oven, that I would have no issues with the ceramic cooktop, and that even though I only cook with CAST IRON, a point I stressed!, I should have no fears about breaking the cooktop. Geez the vase I dropped weight about 100 grams… I think my cast iron wok weighs about 15 lbs!

😦

September 17, 2012

chutney canning

I have a “Kootenay Mom” my mother in law appointed our regional mother when we moved to a new province, and far away from our folks. My Kootenay mom is a super woman, her garden is magnificent and her husband and her grow all of their own food for half the year right here in the Kootenays and then pack up their VW bus with all of their homegrown food canned and preserved foods, and head south to live in Mexico for half of the year, where they promptly get canning tropical fruit salsas and chutneys to bring back north with them in the spring. Truly an inspiring year of eating and growing. She has shared so many delicious relishes and chutney with us over the years, and just the other day I called her for her fabulous plum chutney recipe, which I am inclined to share with you all, because it’s great, I am drowning in plums so likely this will not be the last canned plum recipe you see here.

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September 8, 2012

chipotle peach BBQ sauce

Canning canning canning. I am trying to focus on canning things that can be used as elements to hearty winter meals rather than as accompaniments. So sauces are top of my list. Today I branched out and tried a southern style chipotle peach BBQ sauce made with honey and apple cider vinegar. Yum, my friend and I licked the vat clean, (after the jars were canning away of course). I can’t wait to slather this on a rack of ribs, or stir it into baked brown beans, I think this would also be a lovely dipping sauce for spring rolls and baked crunchy goodies.

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May 19, 2012

barley mushroom cheesy bean balls

As I am always on the hunt for a great veggie burger I opted to finally buck the system and just wing it with my food processor. The results were great! The patties and mini balls I made all held up to a good pan frying and I am certain they would do well on the grill too (although I haven’t dug mine out yet and taken it back for it’s new wasp inhabitants)

I got to use my fancy new pressure cooker to cook the black eyes peas and barley in just 12 minutes so that is what started it all off for me.

There was some controversy amung our farm interns as to wheather or not it was cheatting if you topped a veggie burger with local happy bacon. I felt it was all wrong, they rooted for bacon, so I gave in  (they were working so hard out there moving dirt), we topped our burgers with avocado and smoked thick cut bacon and a good slab of cheese, homemade pickles, and home made ketchup… YUMM. I am a bacon veggie burger convert:) sorry my veggie friends! We ate the burgers so fast I didn’t get a chance to snap a picture… but I did manage to get a shot of these darling mini bean balls.

This recipe makes a huge batch, which yielded 9 thick and lovely burger patties as well as about 2 dozen mini bean balls.

In a large food processor combine:

1 cup cooked barley

1 cup cooked black eyed peas

1/2 cup of feta cheese

2 eggs (fresh from the chicken nesting box)

6 shitaki mushrooms (fresh or dried and soaked and drained)

a handful of parsley

1/2 cup of sunflower seeds

1 carrot

1 celery stick

4 cloves of garlic

2 tbsp grainy mustard

S+P

1 tbsp home made seasoning salt

1 tbsp tumeric

1 tbsp garlic powder

2 slices of toasted sprouted grain bread (or 3/4 cup gluten free bread crumbs or cereal flakes)

and a good amount of love

Once combined, allow to set covered in fridge for about 1 hour.

Then form into desired shape and pan fry or grill using organic veggie oil until golden brown, top or dress as you see fit and best of all ENJOY!

Summer time good eating!

April 10, 2012

beet and hemp kale salad

I really can’t get enough of kale salads… kale in general. You should see how many packs of kale seeds I have and plan to plant this year! I made this wonderful salad for my friend and brand new moma to help keep her out of the kitchen and her family nourished as they get used to the new little life in their lives. This is a take on a slalad my mother in law made while we were visiting her, and I think it’s simply perfect! kale, beets, grapefruit and hemp.. not much more to it than that!

In a large bowl combine:

1 bunch of kale finely shredded

1 large beet grated

1/3 cup hemp oil

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup grapefruit juice

hearty pinch of course sea salt

massage dressing into kale and beets by hand then add:

1 grapefruit cut into tiny sections

1 large handful of hemp seeds

serve with a smile

March 14, 2012

roasted pineapple chilli tofu snowflake salad rolls

I have just  joined this great recipe swap blog group run by the Burwell General Store, and I am thrilled to be part of an inspired group of seasoned bloggers who are up for the monthly vintage cookbook challenge Christina dishes out.

Once I joined the group and as I was eagerly awaiting my first challenge I had this creeping fear of receiving some mayo laden jellied meat recipe, seriously… when low and behold what challenge should arrive in my inbox, but a jell-o snowflake salad. Yes folks, veggies and cheese encased in jell-o served on a bed of greens with a dollop of MAYO! ACK. Luckily the challenge leaves room for interpretation, and I embraced the jell-o (albeit organic, vegan gluten free jello alternative) and can honestly testify that I created delicious vegan snowflake salad rolls, which totally rocked!

read more »

March 4, 2012

caramelized onion seedy squash pilaff

Yes indeed this is another pilaff recipe… I guess I just can’t get enough of the diversity of texture and flavour in every bite. A little soft, a little sweet, a little spicy, a little crunchy. Plus I love a simple gluten free vegan dinner that can be turned into soup on a whim!

I made this squash pilaff to bring to dinner at our fabulous friends house who roasted a lovely leg of local lamb, the ideal occasion to whip up a little jar of mosquito mint sauce, for a cozy classic drizzle perfect for any roast red meat.

I started by oven roasting a whole bulb of garlic, sadly one of the last from my harvest, along with a butternut squash. Then I seared a pan full of onion slowly, building the rich caramel flavours, toasted a medley of seasoned sweet sesame, hemp and sunflower seeds, and all of this got tossed into a hearty bowl of brown rice coated with a hemp oil + tahini dressing.

I made a simple seasoned salt which I used in all elements of this dish, so this amount will cover all the demand for “seasoned salt” in this recipe.

In a mortar and pestle grind:
1 black cardamon pods worth of seed
a pinch of cumin
a pinch of coriander
a pinch of Sichuan pepper
a clove of garlic
a couple pinches of course sea salt

grind and use throughout recipe

In a hot oven roast:

1 butternut squash sliced into 3/4″ slices (skin on, to be removed later)
peeled garlic cloves from 1 large bulb

drizzle with olive oil and season with salt blend

Cook 2 cups of brown rice  (using your favourite method) 

In a frying pan toast:

1/2 cup sesame seeds

1/2 cup hemp seeds

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

along with a drizzle of olive oil + the above salt blend, once golden brown squeeze a drizzle of maple syrup or agave over the lot and toss frequently, remove seeds from heat, and set aside.

In the same pan slowly brown: until golden and soft

2 yellow onions sliced into thick 1/2″ rings with a drizzle of oil + again more of the salt blend.

de-glaze then pan with white wine or water once the onion is nicely browned then allow the onions to soak back up all the rich juice, set aside.

In a serving bowl dress the cooked rice with:

1/2 cup hemp oil

2 tbsp grainy mustard

2 tbsp tahini

Finally chop up all the squash, garlic, and onions, toss in the nuts and mix gently into the dressed rice. serve warm garnish with parsley.

It all reads a bit fussy, but it’s a nice cooking process that you can do leisurely, and ahead of time.

hope this inspires.

enjoy

.

February 22, 2012

sichuan + savoy cabbage pilaff

I am literally licking my plate clean as I write this entry, this somewhat uninspired hump day meal was wonderful and complex, bright and fresh! Yum I love it when a few simple ingredients and a memory of flavor combinations turn into a delightful dinner success. I rarely if ever use recipes for meals I let my inspiration come from what is fresh (from the garden usually or pantry these days), what needs to be used, what is left over and then I let my pallet guide the accompanying flavors. This dinner was born from a beautiful savoy cabbage and the memory of spicy sichuan dan dan noodles.

read more »

February 13, 2012

truffle kissed chocolate mousse

If your in the mood for a little chocolate love this week, this milk chocolate mousse will defiantly do the trick! These are actually very easy to make, and most of the time invested in them is in allowing them to set up. Easy and pleasing… what more could you ask for on this hallmark holiday?

In a double boiler start by warming:

4 large egg yokes

1/4 cup can sugar

pinch of sea salt

small squeeze of vanilla

Using a whisk combine ingredients and warm for about 3 minutes over rapidly boiling water, until the mix is bubbling just a little and feels warm to the touch.

Remove from heat add add

100g of good quality dark chocolate finely chopped.

Allow chocolate to settle into the mix for just a minute before stiring, then combine until silky smooth. Set aside to cool somewhat.

In a stand mixer beat

3/4 cup of whipping cream to soft peaks

Gently fold whipping cream into chocolate 1/3 at a time.

Pour mousse into nice glasses or bowls, and allow to set in fridge uncovered for at least 4 hours.

Before serving garnish with fresh grated chocolate, a handmade truffle or a dollop of fruit sauce… whatever floats your boat.

Enjoy the mousee and the oohs and awe’s that come along with serving this!

February 12, 2012

slow food february french onion soup

I am chasing the winter blues away with the most local soup ever, although it’s named French onion soup, it’s really not French at all, what it is however is made entirely with the contents of  my food shed + a splash of dry sherry from Australia. This is my hands down all time favourite soup! BUT only when done properly… have you ever been served watery broth with a handful of salad croutons from a box and a sprinkle of the plastic powdery parmesan cheese at some restaurant? Gawd what a sad affair that is.

I decided to make this soup because I had lots of yellow onions, local cave aged cheese, a deep craving, and the only herb I have still growing is thyme. It seemed a natural.  We are blessed with wild creeping thyme which covers a HUGE amount of grass and roadside at my homestead, and when I built a herb spiral in my garden a couple years ago, I added a big shovelful of this hearty thyme to the base of the spiral. As it turns outs the herb spiral is cozied up just below our walk through cold frame , and I have about 2 sq ft of still living fresh green, un-snowblanketed thyme! Which is pretty fabulous because I actually didn’t dry any thyme this year, so I have been enjoying  gentle grazings of this robust fresh herb on occasion.

I used a new technique for making French onion soup this time and that is to oven roast the onions in butter (which coincidentally was churned by my neighbour) slowly for hours the day before putting the soup together. I also decided at the same time to boil down a batch of dinosaur sized cow bones, that I hauled home from the latest down the road butchering day. Originally I intended on giving them to the dogs, but when I realized I was out of my home-made beef stock and had no bouillon cubes left… the answer was obvious, and the house smelled divine for the whole weekend as I bubbled away bones, celery, onions, parsley and garlic to yield about 2 quarts of hearty stock.

You could of course do this all in one day, and use tetra pack stock (mushroom would be perfect for a veggie version), but It sure added to the appeal of this dish for me to draw the process out, build the flavours and use my friends cow bones to brew up another supply of beef stock for my freezer!

On the rare occasion I make a pot roast, I often make this soup the next day mainly because you end up with so much meaty beef stock and I always think this is the perfect venue to use it up in (only after making leagues of gravy of course). I also tend to use a slow cooker to make onion soup, but this weekend, I set out to soak up the onion-y steam and spend some time being very domestic, tending to the stove and the fire (while my partner was up in the forest cutting down dead standing tree’s to keep us cozy through the last push of winter), It also seemed a natural fit.

Regardless of if you do this in two days or one, in a pot or in the slow-cooker the first step is certainly the most important to adding a rich deep caramel colour and flavour to this soup.

In a well buttered heavy bottomed oven safe pot add:

1/4 cup of butter

8 medium onions sliced 1/4″ thick

S+P

two sprigs of fresh thyme

Roast at 300 for  about 4 hours, in which time you only need to stir it twice.

 

Remove from oven and place on stove top over medium high heat

Paying close attention and stirring very little you want to create a deep caramalized char on the bottom of the pan, once it is all deep brown you want to de-glaze with 1/4 cup of sherry. stir all the golden bits into the liquid and essentially clean the bottom of the pot with your spatula. Do this 2 twice more but on the last time use 2 cups of stock instead of sherry. at this point you can transfer the pot to a slow cooker or the fridge or keep right on making the soup.

In to the pot add:

6 extra cups of stock (beef is ideal, but as I said already mushroom would be nice too)

2 tbsp red wine vinegar

2 tbsp sherry

2 additional springs of thyme

S+P

Simmer for at least 30 miutes (if cooking on stove top)

To make this soup authentic and wonderful you need some oven safe soup bowls. Portion hot soup into individual bowls, top with a thick cut slice of sourdough rye bread, cover with a good amount of gouda, or another aged and robust cheese, sprinkle with fresh parsley and broil for about 5 minutes, or until you can’t take it any more and you have to dive in!

bon appetit!

February 11, 2012

7 seedy cereal blend

In my possession I have no less than 40kg of nice organic rolled oats which I continue to overlook day after day. I bought them with the intention of eating them each morning for breakfast… but more times than not I fall short on this task, and end up eating a fresh egg on sprouted toast (if anything at all). But I am trying to change that habit, and start with a more whole and hearty breakfast and recently inspired by Heidi of 101 cookbooks and her overnight cereal ritual, I blended up a killer cereal masterpiece. Finally today after looking at this beautiful cereal mix all week, I actually made a huge batch, and everyone, everyone, everyone, was thrilled to devour a big bowl of hot grains laced with coconut, hemp seeds and a sprinkle of brown sugar.

Here is my 7 grain + seed mix:

3 cups of rolled organic oats

1 cup of rolled organic rye

1 cup of organic barley

1 cup of organic flax

1 cup of rolled organic spelt

1 cup of organic hemp seeds

1 cup of organic millet

mix and shake it all together and store in an air tight jar.

Now the cooking part, I loved Heidi’s idea of toasting the grains in butter and then soaking them overnight… the problem is I had forgotten to do so 3 nights in a row… so here is the hybrid technique I used today, and it worked great!

In a large pot toast:

1.5 cups of cereal mix

2 tbsp butter

pinch of sea salt

pinch or two of cinnamon

Stir often and toast for about 8 minutes, when the grains will begin to smell fabulous!

Pour 3 cups of boiling water over the grain, remove from heat and let soak covered for about an hour.

Return to heat with another cup of hot water along with 1/2 cup of coconut and 1/2 cup of maple syrup.

Gently simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring often and adding more water as needed.

Before serving garnish with seeds, dried fruit, nuts, and another sprinkle of drizzle of something lush and sweet.

February 9, 2012

big bad baked brown beans

I remember LOVING baked beans as a child, and I had a very distinct flavour I was seeking to recreate when I made these earlier this week. As I have mentioned before my family has very strong British culinary roots, and I have had many a weeknight bean on toast night in my life… but tin beans have nothing on all day sweet molasses baked brown beans.

I totally nailed the flavour I was after, and I used this vintage recipe I photographed about a 7 years ago to set me down the right track.  While spending a week out in Kananaskis Country  in a standard  Canadian January trying to keep warm in the -30°c cozied in an amazing old hunter /weavers log cabin with wood heat and a wood stove (not unlike my present life funny enough) I found in the pristine 50’s kitchen a stunning pantry complete with a flour mill bursting with vintage food packaging; herbs, jello, coffee, flavourings you name it. I was in packaging heaven! I absolutely adore old food packaging, and have a collection of some really sweet bits and bobs. As an designer (who does a lot of food packaging these days) I just love seeing the way it all began.

But back to the beans; I used this recipe and tweaked it (as usual) and below is my version along with a not so appetizing image of the net result.. poor beans aren’t too photogenic even in my vintage le creuset casserole and after a few snaps I soon gave in to the enticing smell that was teasing me all day. We all oohed and awed over these brown beauties, and I think you will agree a beans on toast night with these baked beans makes up for many a tin bean debauchery.

My SOLE spin:

2 cups of dry kidney beans

1 cup dry pinto beans

soak overnight

The next day drain and rinse

Set the beans to boil in fresh water until the skins start to split. DO NOT SALT WATER.

In a large measuring cup combine:

1 yellow onion diced fine

4 cloves of garlic minced

1 cup molasses

1/2 cup maple syrup

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 Tbsp mustard

S+P

pinch of chili flakes

pinch of paprika

2-4 Tbsp of homemade HP sauce

2 Tbsp bacon drippings

Once beans start to split drain (reserve water and add 1-2 cups of it to the sauce mix above)

Place beans in a nice cast iron or ceramic casserole dish and pour enough sauce to cover the beans

Add 3 whole maple pork sausages (or any other piggy product) into the casserole, after they are cooked though you can slice them into 1/4″ slices, stir them in and continue baking so they soak up the sauce.

bake at 300 for about 6 hours. Check beans at least 3 times and add more sauce and then hot water as needed.

You want a good amount of yummy thick bubbling sauce, so don’t let it bake dry… after all you need to dunk your toast in something!

Of course you can omit all things animal from this dish and have a really great meal, coconut oil would be nice in lue of bacon dripping but I wouldn’t ruin a good pot of baked beans with tofurkey sausage or anything like that!

happy dunking

February 1, 2012

green onion cakes

I think the only place I have ever had this delicious street food is at the Edmonton Fringe Festival, and for me this flavour is synonymous with crowds and summer and theatre and my cousins. I can’t believe more street vendors haven’t cracked into this easy and yummy vegetarian festival food market.

I stumbled across a recipe for green onion cakes last week and have been dreaming about them ever since.

This dough is so silky and simple… just flour and water. I used organic white wheat flour for this recipe (and paid dearly for my indulgence later, as I do with white wheat always) … somethings just require the softest whitest flours to work, and I think this is just  such a glutinous occasion.

I was imagining this flour as a thin dumpling dough for steamed buns, and I think it would work great in these types of applications. I plan to try this with a really white spelt, and to steam it and see if it reacts as I imagine it might! If is works you’ll hear about it.. otherwise the chickens will enjoy it! They are far less picky than I.

You’ll need just these 6 simple things:

flour, water, green onions (about 5), sea salt, veggie oil, sesame oil.

 

In a small boil combine 1/3 cup organic veggie oil with a drizzle of sesame oil, and set aside.

In a large bowl combine 3 cups white flour with 1.5 cups of boiling water, kneed for 5 minutes until elasticity and silky smooth. (I just kneaded in the bowl and skipped the flouring a surface and cleaning a surface step all together), form dough into ball, brush with a little of the oil blend, and cover with a clean tea towel. Rest dough for 30-60 minutes at room temp.

Divide dough into 8ths, and flatten each portion by hand, brush with oil on both sides, sprinkle with a pinch of chopped green onions, then fold dough over, and roll into desired shape. I made some circular and some more rectangular in shape. brush again with oil and asprinkle of course sea salt.

In a hot frying pan brown both sides of the cakes, cooking with a lid, so as to steam and fry at the same time. Each side takes 2-3 minutes to cook.

Serve hot with a nice spicy dipping sauce.

Sorry my celiac friends.. this recipe is NOT for you.

January 29, 2012

ginger pear cinnamon apple muffins

yum yum yum.

What a great use for apple sauce or as it was in my case apple pear butter (which I slaved over for days.. literally) back in the fall when I was drowning in apples and pears I made batch after batch of sauces and butters. I found I really love my ginger pear butter slathered on toast, but I don’t so much love the apple butter straight up… So this is the perfect solution for “using up what I have been putting up”, soft fluffy spelt muffins filled with oats, flax and hemp seeds with fresh ginger and shredded apple, all topped with a cinnamon sugar sprinkle, oh my.

In a large bowl combine:

1 cup grapeseed oil

2 cups of apple butter or apple sauce

3 eggs fresh and still warm from my feathered friends

1″ fresh grated ginger

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp baking soda

3 cups of spelt flour

1 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup flax course ground

1/2 cup hemp seeds

and a pinch of sea salt

 

Spoon batter (which is thick) into oiled muffin pans, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and bake at 350 for about 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick come out clean.

happy pantry snacking.

 

January 26, 2012

lucky leek soup

Just look at these picture perfect dried leek rings! I grew about 60 leeks this past summer and lovingly chopped and dried pounds of them, and just the other day I found my stash in my endlessly deep dried herb cabinet, and I set to work right away with the slow cooker to make a super batch of immunity boosting very garlic laden “cream” of  potato leek soup. The soup was just what the doctor ordered, as my sweetie was getting sniffly, and I fought off his bug with about  a dozen dosses of oregano oil,  vitamin C, resishi mushroom and anti viral shooters, followed up with a full of love + garlic soup!

I have been stocking my freezer with large wide mouth mason jars of all the yummy big batches of soups I am cranking out these days. After each batch I usually have a few servings of leftovers as well as 1-2 L of soup ready to freeze down. 3 meals from one pot is a pretty great use of my time.

Why is this soup so lucky? Lucky for my sweetie this soup helps kick the bug. Lucky for my daughter the very thing she was craving all day is exactly what her Moma made for diner.  Lucky for me this soup batch made many future meals.

In a slow cooker on high assemble

6 cups of potatoes chopped into small cubes

2 cups of dried or fresh leek rings

1 bay leaf

along with just enough water to cover them.

season with:

S+P

and a good handful of dried: parsley, oregano and sage.

In a small frying pan brown in oil:

1 large yellow onion chopped fine

and one whole bulb of garlic, all cloves chopped down into fine bits

and a good amount of fresh ginger grated.

Once golden brown, deglaze the pan with a little water and pour the works into the slow cooker.

Let everything cook for at least 4 hours

Then using an immersion blender zip up 70% of the soup (leaving just enough potato chunks to keep it interesting.

Add:

3 tbsp coconut milk powder (or half a can of coconut milk)

1 cup of almond milk

2 hearty tbsp of grainy mustard

1 hearty tbsp miso

handful of fresh parsley

and more S+P to taste

heat for another 30 minutes before serving.

Serve to your sniffling loved ones or just enjoy by the bowlfull!

January 19, 2012

home made seasoning salt

Love seasoning salt, hate msg? I grew up dumping mountains of seasoning salt on just about everything I ever ate… now I don’t let my daughter touch the stuff.. but I still adore it! It finally dawned on me to make my own organic / wild crafted version.. and it’s hands down 100% better that the stuff I adored so as a kid!

It takes 5 minutes to whip up a batch… and the recipe is pretty straight forward, so give it a try, and play with the proportions you like.. we like it salty and garlicky!  below is a pictorial recipe guide showing the proportions I used. Most mounds are about 1 tbsp.

In order of volume I used:

Sea salt (both fine and course), paprika, parsley (homegrown and dried), garlic powder, onion granules (homegrown and dried), black pepper fresh ground, chilli flakes, and finally dried lemon rind. Cayanne is a nice addition too if you like more heat!

Mix and store in a glass jar, sprinkle it on anything, especially mac ‘n cheese!

January 15, 2012

fancy food court fried rice

My family goes crazy for this easy fried rice dish, and my sweetie just loves that I used frozen mixed veg for the ultimate food court authenticity! I actually have run out of both corn and peas from my harvest (had a bad crop of both this year) and although I do have carrots, when I saw the mixed organic veggie bag in the freezer section of my local natural food store… I know these little babies were destine for a veggie fried rice dinner.. sans foam take out container.

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January 14, 2012

garlic parm kale gnocchi

Simple, good and fast, also pretty low on the guilt scale (as far as gnocchi goes). I used gluten free gnocchi’s in this recipe and just enough kale to make you feel good about a potato dumpling dinner! You can make this meal in 10 minutes and the kale won’t scare away little ones, because it’s cut razor thin and is barely cooked, just ribbons of green goodness laced in crispy salty cheese and garlic, surrounded in pillows of potato!

In a frying pan coated with olive oil brown:

1/2 of a small yellow onion finely chopped

2 cloves of garlic finely minced

Meanwhile bring water to boil for gnocchi’s, cook and as soon as they start to float to the top remove them with a slotted spoon and gently put them into the frying pan, with the onion and garlic.

Season with black pepper and allow the gnocchi’s to just brown (let them sit for a couple minutes without stirring them around to much!)

Finely sliver 4 large leafs of kale (stock removed) into razor thin ribbons, and toss them into the pan, along with a good squeeze of lemon juice and a pinch of hot chilli flakes.

Grate a good amount of fresh parmesan cheese on the works and quickly toss everything together.

Serve hot, and enjoy!

January 10, 2012

piggy barley hot pot

Another day in the studio meant another slow cooker meal for us, and as the temperature has dropped a few degrees it was time to bust some lovely local organic meat out of the freezer, pork sausage indeed! I love this dish cloth from ohlittlerabbit when i see it I can hear the little jingle “put british pork on your fork” from the 90’s UK pork campaign. Well this pork isn’t british, but it’s happy pig from just down the road and it was about time my crew did a happy meat dance!

This dinner was barley soup meets pork pie… only better, and pastry crust free!

I started by browning in a frying pan:

the meat from 6 spicy Italian organic pork sausages

1 red onion chopped

3 cloves of garlic minced

1 large carrot chopped

seasonwith:

S+P

and a pinch of each: rosemary, thyme, & parsley.

 

Start the slow cooker on low and add:

4 cups of water

1.5 cups organic pearl barley

1 bay leaf

2 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp miso

1 tbsp grainy mustard

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

2 tbsp malt vinegar

1/2 cup of HP sauce (my home made stuff of course)

a little more herbs (the same as the meat blend + a pinch of hot chillies + paprika too)

In a heat safe bowl soak 6 dried mushrooms in 1.5 cups of boiling water for at lest 30 minutes, remove stems, dice into small cubes. Add water and mushroom to slow cooker.

Add the meat and onions to the slow cooker, then deglaze the frying pan with 1 cup water, and add all that flavour goodness to the cooker as well.

Let everything cook down for a couple hours then serve and enjoy!

easy peasy tasty piggy

January 3, 2012

slow cooker chipotle pumpkin quinoa chili

I just love coming home to a house that smells delicious only to find a hot meal all ready to go, slow cookers rock my winter! And sure I did all the work in the morning, but still a meal that is hot and ready when we are is good stuff. I made this chili to use up some left overs from my new favourite red pepper quinoa which I made again the other night. I also keep staring at the last 4 little pumpkins in my pantry that need to be eaten… thus this pumpkin quinoa chili. Full of black beans, carrots, tomatoes, and smoky herbs topped with creamy feta cheese and some bright cilantro, all of this made for a perfect winter weekday meal.

Ohhh and the adorable new cloth napkins made our meal seem a little fancier than usual, I was so thrilled to receive my birthday present (to myself) last week from Oh Little Rabbit, a sweet print shop in the US, where they make the cutest printed organic cotton stuff. I got a whack of lovely napkins, which I am enjoying matching to my meals and table settings. You’ll see more soon… as I have been getting a little bored with my counter top / table top blog photo backdrops!

But back to the meal at hand… you could make this lovely red pepper quinoa dish first (a double batch) and use up the rest in this chili recipe, or you could just add the flavours and uncooked quinoa into the slow cooker and I’m sure the results will be just fine! either way here is what else you will need to jazz up some root cellar squash…

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December 13, 2011

pumpkin parmesan penne

When ever I ask my partner what he wants for dinner he says “tacos” or “that corn chowder” I don’t even know why I bother asking, as for my daughter well her reply is always cheesy noodles please. Tonight I caved and made cheesy noodles with a serious mama spin. I managed to slip in 1/3 of a roasted pumpkin and used organic corn noodles, which yielded a gluten free meal packed with veggies and no one was the wiser!

The sauce for this was really special and it looked like I used orange cheese (which I never buy) but it made it taste cheesier somehow…

In a hot oven

roast 1 small pumpkin sliced into 1″ thick smiles (or any squash) until fork tender, with a drizzle of olive oil and S+P seasoning

also roast the seeds from the pumpkin (same seasonings)

and 4 cloves of garlic (skin on)

In a small sauce pan start a roux

1/4 c butter

1/4 c quinoa flour

allow to bubble away for about 5 minutes stirring often

season with:

S+P

freshly grated nutmeg (about 1 tsp)

a squeeze of course mustard

slowly add 2 cups of milk or cream

reduce heat and stir often as sauce thickens

Then add:

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

1 cup ricotta cheese

handful each of chopped: parsley, sage and oregano

Now add the 4 cloves of roasted garlic (peeled) along with about 2 cups worth of roasted pumpkin

Mix with immersion blender until smooth.

 

Toss cooked gluten free pasta of your choice in this divine sauce and garnish with toasted pumpkin seeds and a little more fresh parm.

* this recipe made enough sauce for our family dinner plus I reserved about 2 cups for a veggie pot pie I am planning to make tomorrow!

December 12, 2011

seedy rice quick fry + import beers

There are so many foods I cook in volume when I cook them… to ensure the fridge is always armed with a quick fix meal, whether it’s rice, bean, lentils, ground meat or boiled eggs, I love to have them on hand. Because eating out of the pantry means planning ahead, and sometimes I am not very good at that… So when I go to the trouble of soaking beans, I make sure I have enough to make a few meals.

This quick fry rice is the perfect use for left over brown rice and an abundance of fresh eggs. Oh and all the beer cans in the picture, were just delivered from the “province of cheep beer” by a visiting friend the other day, was the perfect accompaniment for this dish. Oh Big Rock Beer!

In a wok or deep frying pan brown:

2 cloves of garlic

2 shallots

2″ ginger freshly grated

in a bleand of sesame oil and organic vegetable oil

1 small can of matchstick chopped water chestnuts

1 cup of thinly sliced green cabbage

S+P

1 tbsp chinese 5 spice

5 sichuan peppers ground

Once the onion, garlic and cabbage are just golden brown, then add:

2 cups of cooked brown rice

a drizzle sesame oil

and a good glug of rice vinegar + soy sauce or braggs

allow to cook for 5 minutes before adding:

4 eggs, cracked into a well in the middle of the pan, break yokes and run a fork through the eggs a couple times. Then wait a few minutes until they cook a little more, before running a fork through them again. Do this a couple times before mixing the egg into the rest of the dish.

Toss in a handful each of sunflower seeds, black seasame seeds,  hemp seeds, and fresh minced parsley.

Serve and enjoy. Dinner on the table in less than 15 minutes!

December 9, 2011

mint sauce : best for roast beast

Our dear friends invited us to share a roast dinner with them tonight, from the cow they recently butchered, they are a French Canadian and German family who had ever heard of Yorkshire puddings!!! If you can imagine.

Well I insisted upon making my moms yorkies in a pop over style, along with the only other essential addition to any roast dinner… MINT SAUCE! This mint sauce was the only reason I would ever choke down brussel sprouts as a kid, and I have a hard time putting any roast meat into my mouth without a drizzle of it. Mmm on lamb and beef it’s divine.. but a really special thing happens to mashed potatoes and peas when topped with both gravy and mint sauce.

In our house the entire plate of a Sunday roast dinner gets drenched in gravy and mint sauce equally and generously by everyone at the table. I think it only fair to share this glorious gluttony with my friends tonight… as well as you all.

Mint Sauce

2 tbsp dried mint crumbled (I used wild crafted “mosquitto mint” harvested from our bog in the peak of mosquito season this summer)

1/2 tsp fine sea salt

1 tbsp organic cane sugar

1/2 cup of boiling water

1/2 cup malt vinegar

combine and serve with most anything you want to smother in deliciousness! You can keep this brew in the fridge for quite some time, no problem!

November 24, 2011

apple butter hell and a silver lining

At the start of fall I made my first ever batch of apple butter.. and I vowed never to do it again. Why? because I was using a total piece of garbage food mill that had my kitchen a disaster and my stress level through the roof! I had to get out every pulsing, processing piece of equipment I owned to try and get that inferior mill to do anything! I spent hours and hours up to my eyeballs in apple muck all to get 3 lousy pints of fruit butter…. um no thank you. The time input to quality output ratio was all off.. and I am not a fan of make work projects.

Weeks past and then the box of quince showed up, and I was destine to make quince paste so I struggled through another 10 rounds with that borrowed food mill, while drooling over new models on the internet. Wonder just how much better a new one would be. Then found myself  meandering through a thrift shop (one of my must do’s when ever I head into town) when I stumbled upon a beautiful piece of vintage packaging, my heart fluttered, oh how I love an old kitchen tool in it’s original box! “PERFECT FOR CANNING AND FREEZING” it stated plainly in red ink on a punchy yellow background. It was a Victorio Strainer..  from the era when things were made to last and work. This large well built clamp down countertop food mill, was OMG the answer… all the pieces were in tact and accounted for according to the easy to ready instruction manual complete with exploded parts diagram. EEEEE! 🙂

Hello Quince Paste. Hello Apple Butter. Hello Pear Butter.

Moments after returning home from that town trip I had water boiling and the last of my quince bubbling away until tender, time to get cranking! and after only 5 minutes (assemble included) I had run 10 lbs of quince.. no sweat, no mess. All of the sudden I was aching to start processing the bucket of apples and pears sitting out in the snow I was trying to forget about!

So today I did just that I boiled up all the rest of my apples and pears (separately), ran them through my new most favourite piece of vintage kitchen equipment. I baked them off with a few cups of organic cane sugar each along with some lemon juice. The apples got a cinnamon treatment and the pears got fresh ginger. They are happily baking down in my oven right now! and tonight they will be processed into oh so worthwhile butter!

Finally I get it…. making fruit butter  or fruit sauce is no big deal when you have the right machine to process it! Yeah for the right machine!

Oh and when my girlfriend came to collect her food mill.. I happily sent her my Victorio No. 200 to borrow and compare! (I couldn’t in my right mind send her home knowing she had fruit to process with that inferior object!)  ‘Ha ha she called me glowing about just how amazing my new strainer was now they are on the look out for a similar find!

butter baby.. I’m back!

November 13, 2011

lazy day rosa

 

I recently spent an afternoon driving an hour and a half away to do some ethic shopping at the local-ist Italian market,  I came home with a pantry load up of all things Italian… olive oil, olives, pasta, cheese, salami … you can understand why after all that I just had to make a pasta dish… and I had to celebrate the very last of my garden fresh broccoli!

I also have a million things to finish up today as the snow line creeps downwards and ever closer to our spot on the mountain, this change of seasons means not only a change of pace and food but of comfort and challenges on our rural homestead,  the garden is almost all in, although I have Brussels sprouts, carrots and beets still thriving along with a tiny amount of kale… what a sad time. Good thing my pantry is loaded with the tastes of spring, summer and fall to get us through the winter. And with everything on my plate these days, my goal tonight was a quick dinner that tasted like it had simmered away all day:

This rosa sauce is thickened with boursin cheese and ricotta, and is flavoured with caraway and hot Italian local pork sausage, in a spicy tomato base served with baby lasagne style noodles. Meaty and full of fuel for a long night of building before the snow comes and decides to stay.

Start by browning:

1/2 lb of italian pork sausage meat in a good glug of olive oil

add 2 minced garlic cloves

1/2 of a small leek finely sliced

1 tbsp whole caraway seeds

S+P

and a good pinch of hot chilli flakes.

bubble and brown once sausage meat is nice and golden de-glaze the pan with a splash of red wine.

then add 1.5 cups of itailan style crushed tomatoes

a handful of fresh parsley and another glugg of olive oil

allow sauce to simmer while you start to boil and cook pasta (something with lots of ridges and ripples to hold a chunky sauce) at the same time you add the pasta to the boiling water add to the sauce:

2 tbsp boursin cheese (or cream cheese)

2 tbsp ricotta

and 1.5 cups of finely chopped brocolli

and a splash of cream, simmer on low for another 5 minutes.

Once pasta is cooked strain and reserve about 1/2 cup of water to add into sauce along with noodles. toss with a final glug of olive oil and serve with fresh grated parm.

The caraway is my favourite thing in this dish… i just adore pork and caraway together especially with leek (a pretty classic English combination) turned itailan. there are certainly days for quick and hearty meals and today was one of them.

November 8, 2011

dan dan noodles in a firey sichuan sauce

Wow this dish burned the mouths of my loved ones… while I enjoyed every spicy morsel…  and as my world got doused in snow today the idea of peppery warmth with new Chinese flavours rolled over and over in my mind, and seemed like the perfect solution for a frustrating start to the wintery season. It’s all down to a great new book I started reading “Sharks Fin and Sichuan Pepper, a sweet-sour memoir of eating in China” by Fushsia Dunlop. The book it self is a bit of a conflict for me, as I never read in the day time, and I am not usually a late night snacker… but reading before bed about mysterious Sichuan dishes in mouth-watering detail is leaving me dreaming about pepper and meat and noodles and smoke, even wondering about the texture and taste of things like rabbit head and pig ear, and even jellied chicken blood!

Dan Dan noodles mean shoulder pole noodles, which come from tradition of Chinese street vendors who carried noodles over their shoulders on bamboo poles. The storey of eating these noodles, steeped in Sichuan peppers was instantly appealing to me, and when I found a recipe to follow the chapter I was delighted. Not only did I get to play with entirely new spices and fermented flavours, but I realized just how much I can relate to wanting to eat foods that warm you from the inside when you live in a humid climate (which is still pretty new to me, coming from the dry prairies).

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November 3, 2011

cleaner greener caesar

There is of course a general consensus that caesar salad is not good for you, and certainly a plate of roman slathered in shelf stable Kraft dressing, white bread croutons, processed parm, “facon” crumble and some nasty mechanically separated sear marked chicken bits does not constitute a salad, or food for that matter.

Well this cleaner greener caeser salad makes up for all those food sins.

I started with a fresh organic head of locally grown roman lettuce, topped  with lovely garden fresh slivers of celery and shredded carrot.

Then I add squares of organic local firm tofu quickly seared with S+P, chilies and a drizzle of maple syrup to finish them of to a perfect sweet and hot char.

Quickly  I toasted up a slice of  bread (I used a organic sprouted wheat) and cut it into croutons, then covered the mound with grated sharp organic cheese, and finish the salad with a mountain of fresh parsley chopped fine.

As for the dressing… I used my new favourite glory bowl dressing to which I added 1 tsp of anchovy paste to 1/2 cup dressing, this made for the perfect caeser sauce!

Mmm a wonderful lunch for the first snowfall of the year!

September 6, 2011

peachy coconut + hemp streusel muffins

These are the perfect energy snack for a day of canoeing on the lake! Last week we had friends and family up and we took our newly re finished canoe for it’s christening and loaded 6 adults and 2 kids into two canoes and hit the lake. These muffins were a hit, and my sister in law picked these organic peaches in the Okanagan valley on her way through, along with a monster box of apricots (which just last night turned into a divine drunken jam.. that recipe is coming soon).

I am not much of muffin fan, I find them cake-y and boring, I never buy them and rarely make them, however I must admit that this recipe breaks all my muffin boundaries and is sure to please the most cynical muffin hater, like myself. The super ripe peaches make perfect moisture pockets and the toasted coconut hemp streusel topping take them to the next level.  This is a no fuss muffin I hope you’ll try and am sure you’ll enjoy.

warm oven to 400

prepare a standard 12 muffin pan with oil

while the oven is warming place an oven safe bowl with 3 oz of butter in it, in the oven to allow it to melt while you combine your dry ingredient.

In a large bowl mix dry ingredients together:

2 cups spelt flour

2/3 cup cane sugar + 1 tbsp

2 tbsp powder

pinch sea salt

1/2 cup hemp seeds

1/2 cup coconut

pinch of cinnamon

pinch of cardamon

Remove melted butter from oven and add:

the fruit from 4 fresh peached choppes into 1″ cubes

2/3 cup of buttermilk (or soured raw goat milk as the case often is in my house)

splash of fresh lemon juice

combine wet and dry ingredients and portion batter into prepared tins

in a small bowl combine struesel ingredients:

1/4 cup hemp seeds

1/4 cup coconut

3 tbsp cane sugar

3 tbsp hemp oil

blend and sprinkle a little streusel ontop of each muffin

bake for 18 – 20 minutes (until a skewer comes out clean)

enjoy warm or later while soaking up some sun…

* After rushing to get to the lake with these hot from the oven I discovered yet another use for my bamboo steamers; they make great hot muffin storage containers!

July 26, 2011

garden greens + hemp kiwi dressing

There are so many  greens and shoots and edible flowers popping up these days from the garden! My salad bar is back and it is fabulous!

The other evening we enjoyed a pot luck at a friends house up the river, I brought this garden salad with a really nice hemp kiwi dressing, but far more impressive than anything we ate was the show we got to enjoy: a fire dance accompanied by a chello along with a thundering lively lighting show, while sitting around the camp fire with our fabulous brew co-op wine in hand!

magical summer evenings.

I have been spending lots of time in the garden and on the lake these days, and although I am making lots of lovely meals for our revoloving door of guests I haven’t been taking the time to write about them all… so I am starting the process of going through images of meals past to reveal some recipes and do some posting, in all my free time!

This salad was simple any green assortment I pulled from the garden along with some thin cucumber slices, kiwi slices, shaved cabbage, edibale flowers and a handful of hemp seeds.

The kiwi dressing :

1 part hemp oil

1 part apple cider vinegar

2 juiced kiwi fruits

1 part olive oil

S+P

finely minced fresh chive and basil about 1 tbsp each

and about 3 tbsp black sesame seeds.

toss before serving and enjoy!

* the picture below is my evening dinner collections complete with the first lovely easter egg radishes that don;t have much chance to get to the table between me and my daughter and our snacking.

July 4, 2011

hemp pesto + mint meatballs

My most favourite girlfriend from the city spent a few nights with us here on the home-front for the Canada Day long weekend and we made and enjoyed a really lovely meal together last night… hemp seed basil pesto on corn spaghetti with a bed of maple caramelized onions and tasty little hemp and mint meatballs, made with our ‘oh so local down the lane neighbours, lovely organic beef. Dinner was smashing and even her insanely picky carnivore fellow enjoyed the dish. (Even though I am sure he was wondering where I hide the tofu?)

This whole meal started with a bright bursting-ly summer fresh bag of basil from my local organic greenhouse gal and the lingering taste of Lebanese fatayia (little pillows of toasted white bread dough lovingly wrapped around mint and tomato infused beef) which she made and brought with her, which we enjoyed late at night with good wine.

hemp pesto

In a processors blend:

1 large onion

5 toes of garlic

remove half of the mix and keep it in a big mixing bowl to use for the meatballs

Now add 3 huge handfuls of fresh basil

the juice of 1 + 1/2 lemons

1 cup of hemp hearts

S+P

and a good heavy glug of hemp oil

a pinch of chili pepper flakes

and finish with a drizzle of a nice olive oil

puree until smooth and silky

this batch yields about 500ml of pesto and we used 1/2 of the jar to season 4 dishes of pasta.

mint hemp meatballs

In the large bowl set aside with onion and garlic mince (from the pesto) add:

1 lb organic ground beef

1 egg

1/2 cup hemp seeds

S+P

about 2 tbsp each; fresh basil, mint and flat leaf parsley,

and about 1 tbsp each; chilli powder and lemon rind

mix by hand and roll into desired size meatballs

set balls onto parchment pan and bake at 375 for about 35 minutes

While the meatballs are baking you can slowly caramelize 2 onions in butter and maple syrup, and cook your noodles of choice.

toss the pasta along with a little reserved pasta water with the pesto, and top with the meatballs (which were fresh and bright with the divine addition of the mint) and onions.

you are certain to enjoy this.

June 20, 2011

buckwheat shoot micro green salad

I am flush with lovely crunchy buckwheat shoots, so we are grazing on them constantly on lazy garden days. I made a little micro greens salad the other night and the colours were enchanting! The deep dark purple of  the orak, the tender light green of the buckwheat, the vibrant purple heads of the garlic chive flowers, along with baby spinach, tiny collard greens, chives, fresh dill and flat leaf parsley bits. I covered these luscious greens with some garlic toasted baguette croutons, some lovely goat feta my girlfriend (a new milk maid), made which turned out wonderful. This salad was perfectly finished with 10 minute boiled eggs contributed by my feathered flock.

Finally we are starting to eat out of the garden! What exciting times. More good greens each day.

March 24, 2011

warm quinoa miso salad

I am starting on a bit of a miso journey, you see I have never really enjoyed miso, although I believe I have only had it in miso soup and I think possibly and hopefully it is the Dash itself I am not too found of.  I now have in my possession 3 types of miso and I am really wanting to incorporate it into more of my meals, other than the staggering health benefit of eating miso I want to add miso to my arsenal of super foods I think our bodies need to combat all sorts of toxic inputs we are exposed to on a daily basis. Certainly this concern has been heightened due to the situation in Japan today, but more and more I feel we ought to protect ourselves naturally from the impacts of this chemical cocktail world we live in!

So I am increasing my families daily intake of these items: kelp, spirolina, barley grass, apple fibre, beet, vitamin c + d, and miso. Most of these are covered with the super greens we take daily, but kelp and miso are things that I am going to try to add into our food often!

My first plunge into the world of miso was pretty successful! I made a warm quinoa salad with fried tofu and a miso dressing. I thought the combination was really bright and fresh and it came together fairly easily…

you’ll need:

1 cup cooked quinoa

1/2 brick of firm organic tofu

1/2 yellow onion

2 cloves of garlic

1″ fresh ginger

2 green onions

1/2 cup cubed cucumber

2 grated carrots

1/2 cup toasted sunflower seeds

Braggs, lemon juice, S+P

for dressing:

2 tbsp organic light miso

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tbsp hemp oil

1 tbsp sesame oil

1 tbsp rice vinegar

pinch sugar

grated ginger

Pepper

Cook quinoa according to directions on package. In a pan brown cubed tofu, diced onion and minced garlic in olive oil along with grated fresh ginger, & S+P. Once everything is golden brown hit it with a splash of Braggs, and some lemon juice. remove from heat.

In a glass jar bring together dressing and shake well.

In a large bowl grate carrot, add diced cucumber, green onions, & toasted sunflower seeds. To the fresh veggies add warm tofu and onions, then add  still warm quinoa, toss with dressing and serve. This is also great cold!