Entries categorized "nourish"

green!

green!

green!

green!

green!

No, not the grass. (still dreaming of spring here)

Green! Smoothies!

Joe and I did a 14 day cleanse back in January. We've been pretty hooked on green smoothies since. I've been trying to make sure we drink one at least three times a week. They seriously make your body sing a thank you song. After drinking one every day for two weeks, my body knows what they are in a whole new way. So now if I'm feeling in a slump, it yells "hey lady, make me some green stuff!" Sometimes Joe says the same thing. He just adds a please to the end.

Speaking Joe, he surprised me with the blender for Christmas. The one I have swooned over for years. It's a refurbished version for a fraction of the cost. It is amazing you guys! Seriously. I am in smoothie heaven. (this recipe will work in a no frills blender too, read this post for details on that)

I wish I could make a glass of green delicious-ness for all of you!

But since I can't here, is the next best thing. My new favorite recipe::

 

5 kale leaves (tough bottom stem broken off)(torn if using a regular bender)

1 handful of parsley or cilantro

2 bananas (frozen ones are awesome!)

1/2 avocado

1 cup frozen mango (or peach)

1 TBSP of coconut oil

1 TBSP lime juice (or lemon)

1 cup coconut milk (the kind in a carton, not a can)*

2 cups water

 

Layer as above in blender. Blend. Sing a happy dance for your body. If you have some canned coconut milk around, just use a half cup and then up the water to 2.5 cups. This makes plenty for three smoothies. You can halve the recipe for one large one.

green!

It's seriously delicious! Even kid approved in our house! Enjoy~~

xo,

s

ps ~ I'm over at Imagine Childhood today with our recent Nature Walk, come visit.

 


{39}

{39}

{39}

{39}

{39}

{39}

39 only happens once, right? So I made him a chocolate peanut butter cheesecake. It involves far more chocolate ganache than a sane person should ever make for one dessert. I think it's about nine zillion calories a sliver. Seriously decadent indulgence. Totally his favorite combination of flavors.

He loved it.

(also, if you make this & it cracks. don't worry. the chocolate ganache fills in the crevasse, making the unsightly top beautiful again. it also becomes the tastiest cooking mishap. ever. also your dead-head husband will think it looks like a lightening bolt, and you can pretend you did it on purpose.)

But back to 39. I mean, wow, right? I remember stealing glances across a room of strangers some 17 years ago. We had met a week earlier. Him & me. He was turning 22. TWENTY-TWO. And I remember thinking he was so much older than me. By the end of the night we were hip to hip. Side by side. Laughing. It's pretty much been that way ever since. 

Happy birthday to my sweet man...... 

This whole crazy life is all the sweeter with you by my side.

xo~

s


make :: peppermint bark

make :: peppermint bark

make :: peppermint bark

make :: peppermint bark

 

I think this is the fourth year I've made this. Always a double batch. This and the peanut butter blossom cookies are the two things my people request this time of year. (peanut butter cookie with a hershey kiss in it.) Me? I like the bark. But I want toffee. I'll be testing this one out this year. And also these. Which is funny because they're both boozy... when what I am really after is the gingery caramel flavor of them.

But back to the bark. I originally found the recipe here. I've gone back to it each year since. But now that I have changed the recipe a tiny bit, I thought I'd post it here. Most changes are due to me picking up ordinary ingredients at the grocery store. No fancy chocolate.... even though I am certain it would be a worthwhile splurge. I also use peppermint oil now, instead of extract. And my dark chocolate layer is bigger, white chocolate layer smaller. Last year the bark was not kid friendly peppermint-y because the oil is so much stronger! This year it is. I must admit to liking last year's batch the best, but see the boozy things I picked out up there? I guess I like treats that will knock your socks off or something..... Anyhow, the bark was restored to it's original peppermint-ness due to my youngest asking me to please make it right because he wants to like it. That's hard to argue with, you know?

It's perfect for giving. And perfect to hide in an inconspicuous container in the back bottom corner of the fridge for sometime in mid January. Not that I would ever do that. Ahem.

 

make :: peppermint bark

 

Peppermint Bark

8 ounces of white chocolate (must contain cocoa butter, I use no frills baker's, 2 boxes)

2 boxes candy canes (12 ounces or so, crushed, but not powdered)

10 ounces dark chocolate (I use ghiradelli bittersweet)

1/2 to 3/4 tsp peppermint oil (depending on how brave you are, my kids like less, I like more)

8 TBSP heavy cream

*The trickiest part of this whole thing is melting the chocolate over low heat. Some people use a double boiler method & I admit to being too lazy for that. I do it over the lowest heat on my stove, watch it carefully and stir often. Double boiler is defintiely the safest way to go though.*

Cover a baking pan or large cookie sheet with foil. Eyeball or mark an 8x12-ish spot on it. Melt half of the white chocolate. Spread the white chocolate quickly and thinly over the area, use a spatula or icing knife if you have one of those. Cover the white chocolate with half the crushed candy canes. Put in the fridge to cool. 

Meanwhile, melt the dark chocolate & cream over low heat. Stirring often until smooth. If it seems to get oily looking, add another TBSP of cream. Stir in the peppermint oil. Remove the white chocolate layer from the fridge... and again working quickly, spread the dark chocolate layer over the candy cane layer.

Cool until firm. 25 minutes or so in the fridge.

Melt the last 4 ounces of white chocolate. Working quickly, spread the white chocolate layer over the dark chocolate layer & top with remaining candy canes. Cool for 15 minutes, peel off the foil layer & slice into whatever shape suits your fancy. I like triangles.

*do not add cream to the white chocolate. ever. i tried this once, it all turned into a dough consistency.

*if the dark chocolate layer isn't cool, your top layer will melt together with it making sort of a marbled effect. just so you know.  

*you can use those little peppermint hard candies too, i could just pronounce all the stuff in the candy canes, so I chose them. plus they're just so festive. 

*speaking of candy canes, if your sweet man gets a little crazy crushing candy canes, sift the dusties out with a fine mesh strainer. the dusties make the layers not stick together as well. add them to cocoa. or vodka. if you're a grown-up, you can add the candy cane vodka to your cocoa.

Some other good giftable edibles I've shared in the past: Biscotti, Granola #1, Granola #2, Bertha's Hard Run Fuel

Enjoy! Happy giving. And eating.

xo,

s

 


thankful + bacon brussels sprouts

thankful + bacon brussels sprouts

thankful + bacon brussels sprouts

thankful + bacon brussels sprouts

thankful + bacon brussels sprouts

I worked all day Saturday inside & Joe worked all day outside. The little kids ebbed and flowed between the two. Tracking in all sorts of debris and making the good kinds of messes kids make when loosely supervised. Joe & I were up late into the night making pies, stuffing & cranberry sauce. More help by little hands who stayed up way past their bed times.

Sunday was a quiet day, dinner was ready early. More of a late lunch at 1:00. We ate and snacked the rest of the day. Painting some pottery fresh out of the kiln, reading by the fire, playing cards. Simple + quiet. I'm truly thankful for these people I hang out with on a daily basis......

I roasted the turkey breast side down. Epic idea. It was the best I have ever made. By far. Maple syrup was front and center in both pies. Maple-pumpkin and maple-bourbon-pecan. I may have eaten a sliver of the latter with my morning cup of coffee. Shhh....

My youngest declared Thanksgiving his second favorite holiday. (Christmas first, of course.) He said it was so much better than Halloween. It may have been the copious handfuls of marshmallows meant for topping the sweet potatoes talking, but I'll take it anyway.

Lastly, a recipe for the best darn brussels sprouts out there. Dice up 6-8 ounces of some good quality bacon, add to two-ish pounds of halved brussels sprouts, spread in a pan and freshly grind a bit of black pepper over them. Bake at 425 stirring once or twice, until the brussels are crisp but tender. (not mushy!) Broil on high a minute or two to brown the tops.

Enjoy.

I'll see you tomorrow for that elderberry syrup recipe I promised last week. Auto-post was supposed to hook you up with that while we were traveling, but something went awry. It's worth the wait though!

See you then~

xo,

s

 

 

 


*almost* healthy pumpkin bars......

*almost* healthy pumpkin bars......

 

*almost* healthy pumpkin bars......

 

*almost* healthy pumpkin bars.....

 

*almost* healthy pumpkin bars.....

 

I feel the baking bug creeping in. When the weather cools, I want fresh baked goodness and bowls of soup. I could really eat soup, salad, and a baked goodie everyday and never grow tired of it.

These pumpkin bars are a little less sweet and a little lighter than their common counterparts. They've got whole grains and lots of spice. I think they're totally acceptable for a weekend breakfast. They do have vegetables in them after all. And eggs. That makes them pretty good for you, right? Either way, my people gobbled these up and they want more.

We hope you love them too.

 

*Almost* Healthy Pumpkin (or other squash) Bars

3/4 cup spelt flour

3/4 cup almond flour

2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp ginger

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp cloves

1.5 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 can pumpkin (or squash)

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup melted coconut oil

1/3 cup milk (or non milk)

3 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

*Preheat oven to 350. Grease an 8x13 pan with a bit of coconut oil. Mix flours, spices, baking powder, baking soda & salt into a bowl. Set aside. Mix pumpkin/squash puree, brown sugar, milk, eggs, melted coconut oil, & vanilla in another bowl. I find it is easiest to mix the coconut oil in before the eggs, and I use a whisk to do it. This prevents the coconut oil from getting clumpy on you. Mix your wet & dry ingredients together, spread into your pan and bake 20-25 minutes until the edges begin to brown and the center is set. 

Enjoy!

 

PS~ Our friend Avery's surgery went fantastic! He's making an amazingly quick recovery & we can't wait to see him in a few days :) Thank you so much for all the thoughts, prayers, and kind words. xo~

 


csa share :: week 11

csa week 11

 

csa week 11

 

csa week 11

 

csa week 11

 

csa week 11

 

csa week 11

 

This week's farm share included:

tomatoes of all sizes (two pints of cherries + 8 pounds of slicers)

dandelion greens

savoy

chard

basil

red onion

carrots

radish

cucumbers

peppers (bell + hot)

*plus I picked up 40 pounds of paste tomatoes at $1.25 a pound! 

 

We had a good visit with my mom and we're getting back into our groove as a family of six. The big kids are registered for public school and start next week. 9th and 12 th grade! I can't really beleive it. The school is known for having a great drama department and Jade was really excited to take drama as an elective. And art, of course. I think the big kid has decided to take psychology and an extra science class as his elective. Night & day these two of mine.

But, back to the food....

Local summer food happenings in my kitchen::

*giant delicious heirloom tomatoes eaten like apples by my kids, sliced with a bit of salt for Joe & I.

*The kitchen will be full of salsa making all day today. some traditional stuff and I'm trying my hand at a half gallon of this.... have any of you made fermented salsa before? I have only eaten it. it's really delicious in that tangy sour way that fermented foods are. I'm hoping the kids like it.

*roasted tomatoes, garlic + onion blended with a bit of veggie broth makes a delicious tomato soup. we like ours with a bit of shredded sharp cheddar on top. and red pepper flakes, of course.

*this frittatta

*making this today too (from last week's eggplant)

*one pan pasta

 

What's yummy and local in your neck of the woods?

 


csa share :: week 10 + summer food......

Firstly..... thank you all for the sweet words yesterday. I'm always a little uncertain when baring my soul like that.... and you are always so sweet & fill my heart up. Seriously awesome. Thank you~

Secondly, Monday was one of those rough days. We had a ton of things to get done, Joe got in a fender bender on the way home from work. Scary but no one was hurt. He & I ran a zillion errands and arrived home totally exhausted at 8:30 (then tackled building a bed for the big kid, it was a long night!) Needless to say, there was not a speck of sunlight to get a lovely photo of our share this week. Instead you'll have to settle for this::

 

csa share :: week 10 + summer food......

 

This week's farm share included : 

. lots of tomatoes . cucumbers . the last zucchini . potatoes . onions . salad mix .

. eggplant .yukina savoy . peppers . kale . sage . basil . oregano . 

 

But hey, don't leave yet, I do have something worth sharing today. A few simple dinners inspired by our farm shares. Easy, fresh, delicious, summer food. Enjoy.....

 

csa share :: week 10 + summer food......

*the* zucchini fritters. we love them. like really love them. especially with my new favorite summer salad : gently steamed green beans, boiled new potatoes & cherry tomato halves tossed with a generous amount of garlic scape pesto and a bit of olive oil & sea salt. amazing. really.

*

csa share :: week 10 + summer food......

 grandma karen's "cruddy tomatoes" : fresh diced tomatoes, basil, garlic, sea salt, fresh mozzerella + pasta. summer flavors at their finest.

*

csa share :: week 10 + summer food......

lastly, this : roasted tomatoes, chick peas, and sauteed kale. a bit of garlic and sea salt. sprinkled withfreshly grated asiago and some red pepper flakes. because really, red pepper flakes are awesome on everything. 

*

That's it for today. I'll be back Friday with some shop news and some link love and hopefully a great photo of blackberries after we find a local place to pick/visit while Grandma is here!

Happy local eating to you!

xo,

s

 


csa share :: week 9 + my late night tomato date.....

csa share :: week 9 + a late night tomato date.....

 

csa share :: week 9 + a late night tomato date.....

 

csa share :: week 9 + a late night tomato date.....

 

csa share :: week 9 + a late night tomato date.....

 

csa share :: week 9 + a late night tomato date.....

 

csa share :: week 9 + a late night tomato date.....

 

csa share :: week 9 + a late night tomato date.....

 

This week's share from the farm::

4 pints of cherry tomatoes

7 pounds of mixed tomatoes

2 heads of Lettuce

1 bag of Onions

1 bag of Beets

Swiss Chard

Savoy

Cucumbers

Zucchini & Summer Squash

Basil

Dill

Bell Peppers

Hot Peppers

Eggplant

 

Plus I picked up an extra 35 pounds of tomatoes to put up. I spent all day making this sauce yesterday. The last batch was finished up at 10:30. I doubled the garlic and added fresh basil from our share for the italian one. 35 pounds of tomatoes makes 9 quarts of sauce..... and it is out of this world awesome goodness. I did five marinara and four with just garlic. I imagine the plain one will make some seriously good tomato soup with a bit of veggie broth added to it. I filled wide mouth jars with a one inch head space and chilled them overnight. All of them went into the freezer this morning. As long as I follow these steps, I haven't had a jar break.

More good food stuff::

Zucchini Fritters, every week. I always make a triple batch so we can eat them cold for lunch the next day. Luke says "it's like a good vegetable pancake."

Erin made this. I want to eat at her house for dinner.

My big kid has been in Alaska with his grandparents for the past few months. When he comes home I am making him one of his favorites, Moussaka. I love how the chef in this post is honest about this being an insanely involved dish. Not a typical thing around here, but good for a little celebration.

Also, Ratatouille & Pickled Pink Eggplant & Beet Hummus.

 

What are you cooking up from the farm or garden? Do share....

 

xo,

s

 


lemongrass + lavender blueberry jam......

lavender + lemongrass blueberry jam

 

lavender + lemongrass blueberry jam

 

lavender + lemongrass blueberry jam

 

lavender + lemongrass blueberry jam

 

lavender + lemongrass blueberry jam

 

After 3 batches of simple blueberry jam, we are starting to get adventurous. I had my heart set on ginger, but didn't have it in the house. I did have lavender though. And lemongrass. Both dried herbs in the cabinet. I remembered the lavender peach butter from a few summers ago and I was instantly inspired. 

It turned out pretty good. Delicious in fact. Even the guy of the house gave it a thumbs up and he's not a huge lavender in his food fan. The floral flavor of lavender pairs beautifully with the berries. And the lemongrass just takes the whole thing to gourmet. You could certainly do one or the other. (I'd vote for the lavender, it's that good.)

 

Lavender + Lemongrass Blueberry Jam

20 cups blueberries

1 cup lemon juice

3-4 cups sugar (depending on your taste)

1 cup lavender blossoms (dried)

1 cup lemongrass (I used dried)

1 box Pomona's Pectin

 

Mix three cups of sugar with the pectin powder and set aside. Mix calcium powder with water & set aside. Add fruit, lemon juice & dissolved calcium powder water to a large pot. Cook over medium heat until the berries begin to break down and get saucy. Stirring often to prevent sticking. Puree the berries in a blender or with a handheld wand. (be careful blending hot liquids! only fill the blender half way.) Add the pureed berries back to the pot with dried herbs. Cover and let steep 3-4 hours. Strain the mixture to remove the dried herbs. I use a fairly wide mesh strainer to do this. It won't let the herbs through, but all the good blueberry pulp gets through so you still end up with jam. A smooth jam, but still jam. Bring the strained mixture to a boil and stir in the sugar-pectin mixture. I like to use a whisk for this part to avoid any clumps of pectin. At this point, test for sweetness. Add more sugar if you like. Bring the jam back up to a boil. Fill sterilized hot jars with the jam, leaving a quarter inch head space. Process the jars for ten minutes in a hot water bath.

This is a huge batch. It uses an entire box of Pomona's pectin. I only make huge batches. The jam jar count must be worth the hot mess that jam making is, right? But you might not have kids who sneak this and eat it with a spoon. ahem~ So feel free to halve or quarter it for smaller amounts. It makes about 8 pints of jam. (I made 5 half pints, 5 pints, and had a tiny bit left over for the fridge.)

If you're not using Pomona's, you can still add herbs to your jam the same way. As with any canning, please follow all instructions on your box of pectin and be safe.

Here's hoping this jam brings a smile to your face and warm memories of summer when you eat it slathered thickly on toast sometime this winter.

xo,

s

 


csa share :: week 8

csa share :: week 8

 

csa share :: week 8

 

csa share :: week 8

 

csa share :: week 8

 

csa share :: week 8

 

I'm in the midst of finishing up a room redo Joe & I have been working on..... so today's post is going to be a quick one. Even though I'd rather stay here and hang out with you guys than scrub baseboard heaters. I suppose that's a given, huh?

 

Our farm share this week included::

tomatoes                                                

peppers

summer squash & zucchini

cucumbers

eggplant

onions

savoy

one awesome hot pepper

lettuce heads

new potatoes

 

So far this week we've eaten roasted veggies & quinoa with black beans. No recipe, just toss together farm veggies, quinoa, black beans and mexican style seasoning. Makes a great cold salad on day two for the guy's lunch also. Pad Thai (farm veggies and sauce inspired by this recipe). Veggie frittata & tomato-cucumber salad. Likely my favorite summertime meal. (on a random note, spell check does not like the word quinoa or frittata.... maybe they need to update?!)


Good things to try::

Green Pancakes (experiment, swap out the greens for what you have!)

Roasted Tomato Sauce

Spicy Summer Frittata

how to freeze zucchini (you can grate & freeze them too, without blanching. then toss them in soup or make zucchini muffins.)

 

That's it for today..... see you tomorrow to talk about chick(en) love. 

Eat local!

~s