Monday, April 29, 2013

Deadra: lack of a menu, menu, and talk of kitchen chemistry.

This week Adam is going out of town for a while, and then his parents and brother and his family will be in town, so I suspect I'll make a couple large meals then mostly we'll be going out to eat.  So my menu this week is kind of a lack of a menu, geared towards the small people, there will be mac and cheese on the menu.
For me since I am eating impaired lately I have been following what I tend to want, so there is no planning for that, but it is pretty predictable.  I want brothy soups, bibimbap and milk.  Unfortunately it's pretty hot, so brothy soups are not fun to make!  I'll persevere though!
I've been fermenting up a lot lately too.  I'm plowing through a batch of vegan kimchi I made, I had a continuous brew of kefir water and kombucha going and I just started milk kefir again.  I am also soaking some organic soybeans to make a fresh batch of natto.  The warm weather makes everything ferment faster, so I really need to stay on top of it.  I think I'm going to convert my stone fireplace into a fermenting cabinet, it's nice and cool in there, it'll be perfect for fermenting in the summer months.
Although I have picky eaters for the most part (according to my palate) I am lucky that they like ferments!
Happy eating!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Tiffanie: this week's menu

This week I've got house-guests, starting on Wednesday, so we'll be doing more eating-out. I'll have to be extra vigilant about the CSA greens and make sure we eat them quickly.

My plans this week:
  • homemade pizza and green salad. I'm having a lazy Sunday afternoon at home with the kids, so I think we'll make some pizza dough and create individual pizzas.
  • lentil soup, bread, salad. It's going to be sort of hot for soup this week, but I have all the ingredients on hand and it's handy to have soup around when there are guests to feed.
  • spaghetti with garlic, olives, tomatoes, and arugula. Borrowing from Jamie Oliver, here, for a simple and tasty pasta dinner. I like strong pasta sauces like this one. I have a bunch of English peas this week, too, so I might try another of his recipes and cook them in white wine with scallions and spinach.
  • I want to try the recipe below, for no-bake energy balls. Seems like a good way to fatten up my skinny little children. Also, they can help make them.

No-bake energy balls:
1 cup raw oats
1 cup coconut flakes
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup honey
1/2 cup chia seeds, ground or raw (you can also use flax instead)
1/4 chocolate chips (optional)
1 tsp vanilla
Mix all ingredients together in a bowl, refrigerate for 30 minutes, roll into bite-sized balls. Makes about 20 1-inch balls that can be refrigerated in an airtight container for 1 week. Enjoy!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Tiffanie: this week's menu (and last weeks)

Hmm, spring break seems to have interrupted my menu posting. I thought I'd done this already! So, last week we ate... leek and potato soup, green salads, sweet potato hash with kale and spring onions and oyster mushrooms, spicy cauliflower chickpea curry soup, roasted butternut squash with rice chickpea pilaf... can't remember what else.

This week's plans:

  • leftover leek and potato soup, with chickpea flour rosemary flatbread, green salad and steamed artichokes.
  • tempeh salad in a wrap. Need something else here, maybe a fruit salad.
  • Creole Hoppin' Jean, with corn chips and sauteed chard.
  • sweet potato hash for me on husband-works-late-night
  • we're going out to eat one night (daughter has late class)
  • some broccoli grilled cheese sandwiches for the kids.
I'm doing well against the CSA onslaught, though I still have a black radish and a daikon radish, plus random beets and turnips and celery roots rolling about. I'll try and slip them into things.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Deadra: Reinventing the Wheel.

I've started making a two week menu, as I discussed a while ago.  I really enjoy perusing my "Food, Glorious Food, Want to Try" pin board on my pintrest account and choosing meals from there for my menu. However, while many of them are amazing, sometimes I need to reflect on what my family loves.  Granted many of the things I make rather harken to what tastes we love, but I need to make things that I KNOW we love.  Today I made soft meatballs with noodles and red sauce.  (tomato sauce)  It was so yummy, everyone stuffed themselves silly and left the table satiated.  There was no begging to try a bite, no Mama getting exasperated from the lack of tasting.  It was yummy and a hit!

My meatball recipe is pretty basic:
1 pound organic pastured beef
1/2 pound organic pastured pork
1/2 cup bread crumbs (or so)
4 ice cubes of liver (shhh this is a secret!)
4 eggs
a healthy shake shake shake shake of Worcestershire sauce
3 or 4 or 5 grated cloves of garlic
salt and pepper
1/2 a cup or so of Parmesan cheese (grated)
oil or fat of your choice for the pan.

preheat oven to 350 degrees

mix the meats and let your cubes of liver defrost, mix
add everything else and mix carefully, don't beat the meat too much
using a small disher scoop the balls onto a greased tray, leaving space between them, careful to not pack the meat in too tightly
bake 20 or so minutes until they are cooked through (I had to cut one in half to check)
 remove from oven, let cool slightly and enjoy!

These are very delicate, not really ones to be tossed in a sauce, rather ones to sit atop your noodles and gently caresses with sauce.  They are tender and delicious!
PS you can't taste the liver!

I served them beside the red sauce.

Trixie's favourite Red Sauce.

1 24 ounce jar of organic crushed tomatoes
1/3ish cup of water (this is what I swished out of the jar)
3 or 4 or 5 grated garlic cloves
dry Italian seasoning, basil, parsley all to taste (about 2 teaspoons each)
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon of sugar
 let all simmer together
add 1 or 2 tablespoons of butter, once melted in and everything comes back up to temperature, remove from heat and add a generous squirt of good olive oil.

serve over yummy noodles! (and meatballs!)

Over all the whole dinner took me about 1/2 of an hour to make.

I need to remember this, one does not need to reinvent the wheel to feed one's family food they'll love!

Tiffanie: this week's menu

I'm falling behind on my CSA boxes already! Time to focus on using up the greens this week... fortunately I got a big bag of beets this week, so I've cooked them and they're ready to be added to the salads.

My plans:

  • taco night, with mushrooms and maple-mustard tempeh. Big green salad.
  • I'm going out to dinner with a friend on Monday night, so it's gardenburgers for the kids and a sweet potato hash with greens for the husband.
  • bok choy and chickpea saute with toasted cashews. Rice. Green salad. Possibly hot dogs for the kids, since they don't eat much of this meal beyond the cashews.
  • pineapple fried rice
  • Sweet potato hash with greens and eggs for myself (late work night for husband), and pasta for the kids.
I'm soaking more sprouts now, so I'll bake some bread mid-week to use for sprout sandwiches. I'll also make a big batch of rosemary white bean soup for a friend, in the slow cooker.

My CSA box gave me lots of lemons, so it may be time for another lemon coconut bundt cake...