Nov 18 2012

I have had the good fortune to live in many progressive, avant garde, hippy, yuppy, far out places.

And I’ve had a great sense of timing, from attending the University of Colorado at Boulder when Mork & Mindy were popular on TV in the late 1970s, to living in Upstate New York near Ithaca, the academic home of Cornell University.

In the story line of Mork & Mindy, Mindy ran a retail store on the chi-chi Pearl Street Mall in the middle of Boulder, Co. I could tell my friends back home that the athletic track where Mork stood during the beginning credits was where I ran in my running class.

And, being in Colorado, I learned to cook out of the Moosewood Cookbook as everyone did, never dreaming that someday, when I went to graduate school, I would be in Ithaca, New York, to taste the food for myself at the Moosewood Restaurant.

A pillar of vegetarian philosophy.

From the Moosewood Restaurant web site: “Moosewood, Inc. is a collectively owned business with nineteen members who share responsibilities and participate in the various jobs necessary to run what has grown from a very small natural foods restaurant to become a larger and more diversified company. Most members of the Collective have worked together for at least 15 years, and some since the restaurant’s inception in 1973. The restaurant is further staffed by a talented and dedicated group of employees whom we truly appreciate and without whom we could not operate.

With our emphasis on healthful natural foods cuisine, Moosewood Restaurant has operated successfully for thirty-eight years and has been acclaimed as a driving force in the world of creative vegetarian cooking. Moosewood was named one of the “thirteen most influential restaurants of the 20th Century” by Bon Appétìt magazine. We started in an era when many alternative businesses began, and we feel incredibly grateful to have endured, thrived and had a positive impact.

So, being in the arts, I have traveled with trendy people, although I was more of a follower than a trend setter. Living an artsy lifestyle, I learned to do and espouse trendy things.

While most of my Denver, CO friends have probably moved on to the latest current fashions, now after almost thirty five years, I am still espousing the many “fiberatorial benefits” of homemade granola. And, having made granola for as many years, I consider myself greatly accomplished. What a delight it is to make, to store and to eat. So much golden goodness at a reasonable cost, I’ve now decided to share my recipe.

Organic Granola, freshly toasted from the oven.

Sunbonnet Smart Organic Granola

Mix in a BIG bowl:

12 c.      Organic Old Fashioned Oats
1c.         Organic Sunflower Seeds
1 – 2 c.   Organic Raw Wheat Germ
1 c.        Organic coarsely chopped Walnuts
1 c.        Organic coarsely chopped Cashews
1/2c.      Organic Sesame Seeds

Heat 1 c. (or more to taste) Organic Raw Honey with 3/4 c. organic Coconut Oil
Remove Honey and Oil from heat. Let cool a bit and add 1 teas. Organic Vanilla

Mix dry goods with hot honey, oil and vanilla.   Gently stir until evenly combined.

Spread on cookie sheet with sides that has been covered with parchment paper.

Toast in a 300F degree oven until golden, stirring every now and then. The times can varying greatly depending on how deep the granola is on the cookie sheet. Empty the batches in to a second big bowl.

Once all the granola has been toasted, stir the different batches together in the second big bowl.

Add 1 c. Organic Shredded Coconut and 1 c. Organic Raisins or Currents once the granola has cooled and stir well.

Store in an airtight container.  I use 1/2 gallon Mason Jars.

This granola is delicious eaten with shredded Organic Apple and Raw/Real Milk.





Filed under: Food,Organic — admin @ 3:37 am Comments (0)
Dec 29 2011

When you finish the commute home, finally pull into the
driveway and look up to see a scene like this one going
“Waah-Waah-Waah, we’re HUNGRY,”
be thankful you made Scrapple over the weekend.

If you’re like me, you remember being a kid, loving scrapple and then, one morning, making the mistake of reading the wrapper of the commercial product. The realization that Scrapple was made of corn and pig snouts, well, it was a shock that I’m still getting over. But, if you’re also like me and have enjoyed homemade Scrapple with the Amish, made with first quality organic ground pork, then you know you were willing to start anew and go crazy over the stuff.

Scrapple is an old food, mixing cereal with pork, that has origins with the ancient Celts and medieval Germans. Brought to this country by the German Dutch into Pennsylvania, scrapple traveled out to western Ohio and into Pennsylvania’s border states, Maryland and Virginia. Each area has their distinctive treatment as some use oatmeal, corn or wheat for the cereal. But, the common use of cooking cereal mush, adding cooked pork and cooling the mixture into a loaf for slicing and frying ties the regions together.

You’re probably way ahead of me in realizing this post follows the previous one, Amish Fried Corn Meal Mush for a very good reason. To make Scrapple, you cook ground pork, then make corn meal mush and add it to the pork. The rest of the recipe will seem oddly familiar as it follows what we saw yesterday about slicing the congealed loaf of corn meal mush, flouring and frying the slices in coconut oil to a golden brown.

I use a potato masher to break apart two pounds of
organic ground pork into fine crumbles. Add salt,
pepper, and poultry seasoning to taste, but don’t
taste until the pork is fully cooked.

Pour the corn meal mush, the same quantity as
yesterday’s post and made the same way, into the
pan of seasoned cooked ground pork.

Pour the corn meal mush with ground pork, mixed
well together, into loaf pans, the same as yesterday.

Smooth out the surface, let cool at room temperature,
then refrigerate until congealed.

The recipe makes three loaf pans or one loaf pan and
a large refrigerator dish. Slice, dredge in organic
flour and fry in coconut oil.

Fry until golden and sneak eggs onto the griddle
if desired. 

And talk about economical! I bought two pounds of organic ground pork for a little over $10. Combine it with the Organic Polenta Corn Grits from yesterday at about $3 a pack and you have ton of food that will last through many meals for under $15. The taste of the pork moves into the corn satisfying the palate as if there was lots more of it. Satisfying and inexpensive show why this household favorite has been a staple down through history. Try some yourself. I am sure you will like it and go back for more!

BTW, notice how orange the Amish free range organic eggs are? That’s the way eggs should look! When hens are able to eat green plant material the beta carotene concentrates in the yolk making it dark, sometimes even orange. Free range eggs are bursting with vitamins A, E and minerals you just can’t find in industrial eggs. They are worth the extra price. Because they are nutirent dense, you need less of them to feel full so they are actually more economical. For a delightful discussion on egg yolk color, click here.

 

If you love Scrapple like I do, or are willing to try it
this book may interest you. For more information,
hover your mouse over the link below:

Country Scrapple

William Woys Weaver traces the origins of an American culinary oddity in Country Scrapple. Few twenty-first-century Americans recall their forebears’ scrapple, a hearty mixture of seasoned ground meat and grain that made delicious the scraps left over from butchering. Served sliced and fried, scrapple fed farm families heartily through dark winter months. Each immigrant group had its own scrapple recipe, and the Pennsylvania Dutch version made from pork and cornmeal came to dominate the scene. Ohioans still revel in goetta, which substitutes oats for corn. Weaver documents recipes for the many regional American variations and deftly explains the differences among them. The book even has a directory of German museums with scrapple-related displays. A comprehensive bibliography documents written sources.

NaBloPoMo 2011



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Filed under: Food,Organic — admin @ 5:05 pm Comments (0)
Dec 28 2011

After a hard day of yard work, it’s time to put another
meal on the table.  No biggie!  All you have to do
is fry some ready made Corn Meal Mush!

Corn Meal Mush is a long forgotten staple for those of limited means. I didn’t have the opportunity to forget it as I had never heard of it until I became friends with the Amish. Served at least once a week, it can be found at breakfast, lunch and/or dinner in an Amish home. Corn Meal Mush is their rice or pasta. I sure wish I had known about the option when I was in college, along with slow cooking nutrient dense food. Rather than existing on chicken noodle soup and Cheerios, I could have had nutritious, inexpensive, easy to prepare meals waiting for me in my refrigerator every day of the week. But, I have made up for lost time. I tell everyone I know about the delights and practicality of Corn Meal Mush and its logical endpoint, Fried Corn Meal Mush.

Organic Polenta Corn Grits make the best Corn Meal Mush.

When I first learned about this “new” and amazing food stuff in the 1980s, we used the corn meal made by Quaker Oats, packed in a smaller cardboard round box, much like the Quaker Oats oatmeal. But, now with the Organic Polenta Corn Grits available, my Corn Meal Mush has extra vibrancy and go power. The coarser grit of the Polenta delivers lots of flavor.

Place 9 cups of filtered water and 3 1/2  cups of Organic Corn meal in a saucepan. Add salt to taste. I add 1 1/2 teaspoons of Real Salt.  Now, here is the trick: you MUST stir it the whole time over medium to medium/high heat. Do not answer the phone. Don’t try to put a dish in the dish washer, just STIR YOUR MUSH. That’s the only hard part. Multitasking is not allowed, if it involves hands.

Eventually the corn will expand and become one with the water. DON’T STOP STIRRING until you take it off the stove. It should be like hot cereal and very homogeneous as it starts to bubble.

At this point, you can call it a day and just have hot cereal. Add butter and maple syrup for the pancake route or cheese and tomato sauce for the traditional Southwestern Polenta route. The good news is if you keep going to make the Fried Corn Meal Mush, you will probably have enough left over for a bowl of hot cereal to reward you for your trouble as well.

So, pour the hot cereal Corn Meal Mush into containers. Loaf pans or refrigerator dishes work well and they DON’T need to be greased.  I usually get three loaf pans or one loaf type pan and one large refrigerator dish. Notice I am showing the saucepan full of soapy water, because once you pour the cereal and scrape the pan, the saucepan needs to be filled with water. If you forget, the cereal bits will turn to concrete and be hard to remove.

Now, let the Mush cool to room temperature, then put it in the refrigerator until it congeals. When solid, slice, dredge all sides in flour and fry in organic coconut oil

Here are the Mush slices when they start and…

…here they are when getting golden.

Dinner’s ready! Yum-Yum and Cheap-Cheap!

The evening we made this for dinner, we had organic coleslaw, bacon and organic scrambled eggs cooked in organic bacon grease. Those of you not familiar with the Weston A. Price philosophy will be shocked at eating eggs cooked in bacon fat like people used to do before the misinformation about low-fat diets became popular.

The truth is, high cholesterol has never been scientifically proven to cause heart disease. In fact, this country’s heart disease skyrocketed when low-fat diets became popular. So did many neurological and neuromuscular problems. Most people do not have enough fat in their diets and they are suffering for it.

Here is a very important PDF about the myths of cholesterol that have been foisted upon the public for many years. And, BTW, those of you suffering from depression may be fat starved. This is serious stuff! You must have good organic fats in your diet to survive and thrive.  There are many articles and endless references on the Weston A. Price web site. Be sure to research this information. When you hear it for the first time, it is difficult to believe.

NaBloPoMo 2011



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Filed under: Food,Organic — admin @ 5:01 pm Comments (0)
Nov 03 2011

Who likes the game of Soccer? I do! Who likes to eat? I do!
Well, how are you going to eat if organic farms are turned
into soccer fields? Duh…Dunno!

Some of the things happening now-a-days are beyond belief! In Potomac, Maryland, Nick’s Organic Farm has been safeguarding our environment, not just since it was fashionable, but for the last thirty years. But, Nick’s is soon to lose its lease, on January 1, 2012. And what is to happen to this farmland owned by Montgomery County, Maryland? It’s to be turned into soccer fields: Montgomery County’s 502nd and 503rd soccer fields, to be exact. What!?!? Am I kidding you!?!? No, I am not. And the clock is ticking…

In September, 2010, Nick Maravell was appointed to the
prestigious National Organic Standards Board by U.S.
Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack.

What’s Montgomery County’s recognition?
Refusal to renew his lease!

Nick’s Organic Farm is a heritage farm, one of the few farms in Maryland’s Washington Metropolitan area and the only one to produce genuine organic seed. And now, the Montgomery County government wants to destroy it. The farm, owned by Nick Maravell, has been lovingly and professionally tended as organic for thirty years, benefiting the local community, consumers and our environment, including the world famous Chesapeake Bay. Continued refusal to renew Nick’s lease will create a short sighted loss of what should be the pride of Montgomery County. But no! The Montgomery County School Board, which owns the land, gave Mr. Maravell three weeks notice about a inside decision made without public or community input.

Organic, non-GMO seed is hard to find and
will vanish, if we don’t fight to protect it.

Citizens groups have formed with a vision to insure that Nick’s Organic Farm continues as a down-County educational anchor to provide opportunities for school children and adults to earn about local food and agriculture. At a time when people should be become more aware of their relationship to the soil, water and food that sustains us, ending the life of a generational farm is not condusive to life.

If you are aware of the importance of growing heritage, organic seed and want to add your voice to the growing numbers of unhappy citizens, then go here to sign a petition and/or donate.

Join the uproar of those supporting Nick
in his fight to save his farm.

Time is of the essence!



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Filed under: Food,Organic — admin @ 6:30 pm Comments (0)
Jan 19 2011

“Carroty Lion,” an art entry, reminds me of Frankenfoods.

We have been eating strictly organically for three years. We made the decisive switch when we became friends with members of the Weston A. Price Foundation in 2008 and never looked back, except to pat ourselves on the back. We learned that it is hard to understand how much fast food and industrially prepared food affect your health, body and emotions until you make the switch, feeling better every day.

In addition to avoiding pesticides and added chemicals such as preservatives, we have avoided GMO, or genetically modified foods by eating strictly organic. Genetially modified foods have had their cellular structures rearranged on the molecular level. To the naked eye, they look the same, but microscopically, their chemical structures have been changed to formats that have never existed before. They are testtube designed for reasons other than health. What I am saying is they are designed with storage longevity, profit or any one of a number of other motivations, none of which include the health and fitness of animals and human beings.

An educational video on GMO foods features an interview
with Jeffrey Smith. His book is previewed below.

GMO foods are nothing short of remarkable, in that it is amazing we have the technical ability to design food on the molecular level. Being able to do something, though, does not make it right for or advantageous to everyone. While the industrial growers gain market and profit share, consumers are being physically and mentally disabled as these bits of molecularly designed foods enter the food supply. Those people who oppose eating such patented invented foods call them “Frankenfoods” with good reason. And, it is important to realize that many countries, other than the United States, do not allow the sale of GMO foods.

Here is an interesting article on the Hershey company reformulating their chocolate products so that they DO NOT contain GMO ingredients in order that they may be sold to the European markets. This is sobering as it indicates Hershey products sold in the United States DO contain GMO ingredients.

Dr. OZ discusses GMO foods on his show, while indicating
the drawbacks of GMO consumption.

 

A well known researcher, Jeffrey M. Smith,
has written a book that you can preview by
hovering your mouse over the following link:

Genetic Roulette: The Documented Health Risks of Genetically Engineered Foods



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Filed under: Food,Organic — admin @ 4:36 pm Comments (0)
Sep 14 2010

Roots Market is a full service grocery with organic foods.

We didn’t even know ROOTS Market existed. There it was on the other side of town, alive and well, but, we, thinking we knew all we needed to know about organic produce options in the area, were uninformed. Just goes to show that no matter how much you think you know, there is always more to learn.

In the summer of 2008, things were really tough for us, financially, physically, emotionally and just about every other way. We didn’t have use of our car as it had been sitting in place in the garage, broken and unable to move since January.

We had become adept at riding buses and we were very thankful for such an all inclusive bus route system. We could get around fairly well between the local Ride-On buses, the Metrobuses and the Washington, D.C. Metro subway system that comes right out to the Virginia and Maryland suburbs. So maybe that’s why we had missed out on ROOTS Market. It wasn’t on a bus route, couldn’t be reached by the Metro, and wasn’t within walking distance.

We found ROOTS when friends of ours, the ones who introduced us to Real Milk, offered to take us there. Knowing that times were hard for us and we were scraping by, they would show up every Sunday, bring Sunday dinner and see if there was anything they could do to help us. We were truly blessed to have such gracious, caring people in our lives.

At the time, we were walking to a from the nearby Safeway grocery store to bring bottled gallons of water home. On one of the Sundays spent with our Real Milk friends, we asked them if they would mind giving us a lift to Safeway to get a load of water in to save us lugging the heavy gallons back and forth for the next week. Well, they did better then that! They were the ones who introduced us to ROOTS Markets.

Our friends explained that ROOTS has a self fill water unit that will fill any container you bring in for thirty-nine cents a gallon. One visit and we were sold. I had used such stations as far back s the 1980s in Florida and upstate New York, but I had never realized there were water filling stations in the Washington area, not since B. Gordon’s health grocery closed.

So now, we are big ROOTS fans and have worked shopping there into our regular marketing routine. I say “marketing” and shouldn’t say “shopping,” because as I learned the hard way speaking with old Rockville, Maryland residents, when you shop for food, you do not shop, but go to “market” for your “marketing,” much like the Three Little Pigs, come to think of it.

But, I digress and that’s another story….

Meanwhile, if you would like to experience ROOTS Market online, go to this link.



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Filed under: Food,Organic — admin @ 2:21 pm Comments (0)

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NaBloPoMo November 2012