Month: July 2018

Browned Butter and Maca Caramel Latte

Browned Butter and Maca Caramel Latte

In case you haven’t noticed, I’ve been in a real caramel mood lately.  The weather has been getting a bit cooler-especially in the evenings, and early mornings…perfect for a cozy drink!  This hot beverage contains one of my favorite adaptogenic herbs, Maca root!  I love […]

Pumpkin Caramel Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

Pumpkin Caramel Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

Ok, everyone!  As promised…THE BROWNIES!!  These are so good that it’s hard to believe that they are good for you!  The pumpkin I used was our garden pumpkin that I froze in December of last year.  I got cold quickly last fall, so I harvested […]

Homemade Meatballs and Zoodles with Carrot Top Pesto

Homemade Meatballs and Zoodles with Carrot Top Pesto

We have recently acquired all kinds of zucchini and summer squash!  My husband’s grandma has a big garden as do we, and we also got some in our CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) box today too!  This blog is all about saving up local produce when it’s in season, so I’m here to help you with ideas for using all those zucchini your garden is pumping out right now!  Aside from the famed zucchini bread, I also like to toss a cup of grated zucchini into brownies.  You can grate it all up as well as using a tool called a spirooli to spiralize it into zucchini noodles or “zoodles”.  I normally will grate or spiralize all the zucchini I have at once, put it into quart sized freezer bags, and toss what I’m not using right away into the freezer.  This will save you some time.  I find batch prep much quicker than prep for EACH meal!

If you don’t have one of these kitchen gadgets, it’s well worth the investment for making zucchini noodles! It can also shred, and spiralize potatoes, beets, etc

I know the oven was quite hot to cook the meatballs, and normally I avoid turning on the oven on hot days-but today was the perfect rainy, and cooler day to have the oven on for a short 20 minutes.  It was well worth it for these meatballs too!

In this recipe I used dried red peppers we collected from the pick and pay farm last fall.  They are so delicious in this dish as well as so many others that I really encourage you to try drying some peppers for your pantry stash too!  You can read my other blog post regarding tips and tricks on drying peppers for storage.

When we have a summer CSA-or garden for that matter, I almost cannot bear to toss out the leafy green part of the carrots!  There are so many nutrients in the green leafies of carrots!  So, tonight I had no guilt as I turned the carrot tops into a delicious pesto.

The local fare I used for preparing this meal includes the following:

Parsley, Oregano, Italian spice blend from our backyard garden, Scallions, and zucchini from Ahavah Farm-And zucchini also from my grandmother-in-law’s garden, sausage from my family’s farm, carrot tops from Ahavah Farm.  I also picked up a jar of red sauce from a local vendor at CFAM (Colorado Farm and Art Market).  I want to give this local producer a shout out too because the sauce was excellent!  The pasta sauce is Mama Giuseppa and you can find them at the Pioneer Museum Wed from 3p-7p; email them at mamagsauce@gmail.com, or visit their website at http://www.mamagiuseppas.com.  I really liked this sauce because it included vine ripened tomatoes, no water, no high fructose corn syrup, no MSG, and no artificial flavors or colors.

My little guys were exclaiming over the red sauce and the meatballs!  It always warms my heart to hear the words, “these are the best meatballs ever!”

I hope your family enjoys this meal as much as we do!

Homemade Meatballs and Zoodles with Carrot Top Pesto

July 25, 2018
: 6
: 15 min
: 25 min
: 40 min
: Easy

These meatballs are so savory and versatile! The noodles can be served with this recipe or with just the pesto

By:

Ingredients
  • For the meatballs:
  • 3 lbs ground pork sausage
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 3 medium scallions minced
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp red pepper (dried or flakes)
  • 1/3 c. warm filtered water
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • For the noodles:
  • 3-4 medium to large zucchinis
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 TBSP butter
  • For the carrot top pesto:
  • Leafy green tops of 4-5 carrots
  • 3 tsp Italian spice blend
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 c. fresh basil leaves
  • 3 TBSP pumpkin seeds
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Directions
  • Step 1 Preheat the oven to 425 and line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Step 2 In a medium bowl, mix together all the ingredients for the meatballs. Then form into about 1 inch in diameter balls, and place on the prepared baking sheets.
  • Step 3 Bake the meatballs for 20 min.
  • Step 4 While the meatballs are cooking, spiralize the zucchini noodles onto a clean dish towel. Allow them to sit on the dish towel while you prepare the carrot pesto. This will soak a lot of the water from the noodles
  • Step 5 For the carrot top pesto, place all the ingredients in a blender on high speed for about 1-2 minutes. Adjust salt and pepper to your taste.
  • Step 6 Next put 2 TBSP grass-fed butter into a cast iron skillet and add the zucchini noodles in batches. Keep the heat to medium and only warm the noodles through. Do not over cook. Sprinkle each batch with salt and pepper to taste and a dash of Italian spice blend.
  • Step 7 Warm your red sauce in a medium sized sauce pan, and add the meatballs once they are done.
  • Step 8 To serve, place a helping of the zucchini noodles on each plate, top with red sauce and meatballs, and then the carrot top pesto. You can grate some asiago cheese, or parmesan over the top if you like.
The Best Salmon Patties with Cucumber Dill Sauce

The Best Salmon Patties with Cucumber Dill Sauce

My son came up with the name for this recipe!  I created these for them the other night and they all licked their plates clean!  This is a simple recipe and it’s great for those times when you have forgotten to get any meat out […]

Bacon Jalepeno Burgers with Herbed Cream cheese

Bacon Jalepeno Burgers with Herbed Cream cheese

Today I’m going to share my very favorite burger recipe with you all!  This recipe is easiest if you do it all on a flat topped grill, but it can be done on the stove top as well.  My local fare for this recipe includes […]

Ahavah Farm

Ahavah Farm

 

Today I want to share about a local farmer and his family.

Part of the reason I began blogging in the first place was to help get awareness out in our community about local farmers, their farming practices, and how they are trying to help build a stronger community, and  healthier people.

This is Ahavah Farm.  The word Ahavah means love in Hebrew.  This family chose that name for their farm because they truly love their community, and they pour lots of love and hard work into everything they do.

Their names are Yosef and Havah Camire and they are the owners of this regenerative and sustainable organic farm.  They offer some of the purest produce and eggs available.  Pure equals nutrient dense, which in turn creates healthy people!

One of the many hoop houses filled with growing food!

You may be asking what the terms regenerative and sustainable mean exactly.

The term regenerative was coined to represent an organic agriculture that goes beyond simply sustainable.  It is actually a holistic systems approach to agriculture that encourages continual on-farm innovations that in turn encourage social, economic, and spiritual well-being.  This term portrays an intent to restore degraded soil biodiversity.  You may not know this, but there is a whole world of micro-organisms living under your feet, and all around you.   These microscopic bacteria are living beings that enable your food to be useful for your health.  They help make nutrients bioavailable (able to be used by your body-instead of just excreted because your body doesn’t know how to use foreign substances).  These tiny bugs populate your gut aka intestinal system.  Studies show that as much as 70-90% of your immune system is located in your gut.  If you have a healthy gut, then it stands to reason you will experience more health and well-being overall.

Regenerative farming focuses on improving soil health through increased soil carbon, and life in the soil.  Industrial farming has been mining the soil of nutrients for a very long time whereas regenerative farming is all about growing and feeding soil life.

The term sustainable refers to the production of produce, and meats using farming techniques that protect the environment, public health, communities, and animal welfare.  This type of farming encourages production of healthy food without compromising future generation’s ability to do likewise.

Some of the methods Ahavah Farm implements in their regenerative, and sustainable efforts include not using tractors; no tilling of the soil; and no heavy metal products, succession planting, composting, crop rotation, and planting a wide variety of produce.

Ahavah Farm also has another unique aspect.  They have been a “Pay what you can afford” farm since 2014.  They are NOT subsidized-and NOT a non-profit farm.  They simply do this out of the goodness of their hearts to ensure that everyone can have access to pure food.

You can find Ahavah Farm’s smiling faces at the Colorado Farm and Art Market at the Pioneer Museum, Wednesdays from 3pm-7pm, and also the Woodland Park Farmer’s Market Fridays from 8am-1pm.  These markets usually last through mid-October.  They also welcome volunteers!  This is a fantastic way to build community, get to know the farmers who work so hard to produce good food for our community, learn their methods, and lend a helping hand where it will be greatly appreciated!  If you are interested in volunteering you can speak with them at farmer’s market.  You can follow them on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1714532138634754/.  You can also check out their website here:  https://www.ahavahfarm.com.

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Company Lasagna

Company Lasagna

Have you ever looked through an old cookbook?  Perhaps one of a grandmother that is handwritten?  I feel fortunate to have two of these cookbooks, and they are treasures!  They include recipes that were taken to church potlucks, family favorites, and traditional and cultural foods. […]

Freezing Summer Peaches

Freezing Summer Peaches

Peaches are one of my favorite summertime treats!  I just bought 2 large boxes at Saturday farmer’s market.  I buy what are called seconds for two reasons…they are cheaper, and it helps reduce food waste.  If you don’t know what seconds are-they are pieces of […]

Galuchies-A cabbage roll recipe made with local produce!

Galuchies-A cabbage roll recipe made with local produce!

I have a treat for you all today!  This recipe is one from my great grandmother in law and I thought it would be perfect to share with you since there were cabbage rolls for sale at farmer’s market today.  I overheard several people asking what to do with these, and I thought about what a shame it was that everyone in the world has not partaken of this recipe!  So I’m sharing it with you today, so that you can share it with your family and friends.  The ingredients are simple, making this a simple but hearty dish to prepare!  We had this tonight and my little guys were sucking up the broth with a straw, and telling me how good this is!  Grandpa Leo would have been so proud!

I have fond memories of this recipe.  We had recently been out to some of the pick and pay farms near where we live.  We go every year and pick many 5 gallon buckets full of produce.  On that particular day, my husband’s grandparents and mom came over to teach me how to can homemade salsa, and pasta sauce.  They came to teach me-and also to help me get my tomatoes processed because I was very pregnant and very nauseous with our first baby.  They told me that my husband’s grandpa would bring the stuff to make Galuchies for our dinner.  I remember being grateful that someone else was going to be doing the cooking because when you are nauseous you don’t feel like cooking much!  I also remember feeling worried that I may not be able to handle all the smells of cooking food.  I hadn’t been able to handle any food smells for weeks.

However, much to my surprise and delight, the whole day was wonderful, and when my husband’s grandpa put this dish in to cook it was the most wonderful smell I’d smelled in weeks!  I was so hungry and I remember feeling so joyful as I freely and ravenously ate these!  I still love this dish to this day!

Three notes on this recipe:  If you are trying to stay low carb-sub out the rice for riced cauliflower.  Secondly, buy enough cabbage this season to make homemade sauerkraut (see my post on long fermented sauerkraut).  I promise you this dish will be much better for you with homemade long fermented sauerkraut.  All the good bugs that are healthy for your gut flora do not like the hight temperatures of cooking that this recipe calls for, however, I spoke with a microbiologist regarding fermenting and heat.  He said even dead lacto-bacilli are better for you than none at all.  As a rule, I try to serve most of the ferments we eat unheated.  This is the one exception I make, and it is a delicious exception!  The sauerkraut you buy in a can at the store is dead.  It has not been long fermented, and has no good gut bugs in it.  It has also been heated at a high temperature during the canning process.  So not only is the nutrition better for you in long fermented sauerkraut, but so is the taste.  The third thing I wanted to mention is that I use homemade chicken broth in place of the water in this recipe.  I feel like it gives it just another little boost of hearty, filling nourishment!  If you do not know how to make your own broth, keep watching my site because I have an easy broth made from lemon, pepper, rosemary roasted chicken that is our favorite, and I’m planning to share here!

I have family that raises grass fed beef for us, however they are not local.  There are many options in our community for both pork and beef including Heritage Bell Farm, Corner Post Meats, or Ranch Foods Direct.

Galuchies

July 12, 2018
: Varies
: 20 min
: 2 hr
: Moderate

Tasty, non-fussy traditional German dish that is a hearty late summer, fall or winter treat.

By:

Ingredients
  • Large cabbage leaves-carefully removed so that they remain intact. Peel off as many as you think you will need to serve your family. 1 large cabbage leaf will make about 2 gulchies.
  • 1 pound hamburger
  • 1 pound pork sausage
  • 1/4 cup rice OR riced cauliflower if you are trying to stay low carb.
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Directions
  • Step 1 Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • Step 2 Carefully remove cabbage leaves, wash and wilt a bit in the microwave.
  • Step 3 Have a roaster ready for baking the galuchies.
  • Step 4 Put enough sauerkraut to cover the bottom of the roaster in a medium layer.
  • Step 5 Shape the meat/rice mixture into balls, and wrap the cabbage around it. Put these on the bed of sauerkraut in the roaster.
  • Step 6 Cover with more sauerkraut, and make sure there is enough water in the bottom of the roaster so that your galuchies do not dry out while you are baking them.
  • Step 7 Cover with the roaster lid and bake 1.5-2 hours.
  • Step 8 You can eat these as they are or you can serve them on mashed potatoes.

 

Super Fuel Mocha Latte

Super Fuel Mocha Latte

I’m sure all of you who have come to my house for a visit can attest to the fact that I love my herbal goodie drinks!  I’ve gotten many raised eyebrows when I’ve asked them about adding things to their coffee such as Turkey Tail. […]