A blog of hopeful, inspired living: cooking & baking & growing & harvesting & preserving & gleaning & eating & sharing food... while bringing positive change to my kitchen and our food system.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Date Apple Walnut Bites

When my baby was only eating purees, she ate pretty much everything. So I came up with a system of preparing and freezing fresh, healthy baby food that worked well for me and guarenteed she was eating like a gourmand. Sweet potato, broccoli, kale, raisin, goji berry puree? Check! Cashew, butternut squash, spinach & quinoa? Check! Now that she's eating solid food and feeding herself, she's become quite the critic. A lot of my masterpieces go on the floor. So when I hit upon a concoction that she likes, I feel like I've won the lottery...especially when it's something that we also enjoy.

These bites have been a winning ticket. They are sweet, easy to chew (a big bonus if you only have four teeth!) and packed with protein, iron, fiber, minerals & other nutrients. They keep weeks in the fridge, and they travel well. And my whole family (and friends, too!) love them.

Oh, and did I mention that they only have 4 ingredients?! Awesomeness.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Beginnings. And Radishes.

At the beginning of April we managed to plant our garden -- two 8x4 raised beds in the backyard. I had a packet of radish seeds left over from last year so I sprinkled a row of them between some tomatoes and beans, hopeful that they'd grow up and be harvested before everything else got too big. And, Voila! They grew. Harvesting those humble radishes was extremely, ridiculously satisfying. I felt such a rush of accomplishment. I planted them. They grew. I harvested them. Success!

And they are beautiful. Vibrant, perfect globes. So simple. But who really loves a radish? I've never heard anyone wax poetic about a juicy garden radish. All the better. It feels right to be starting again with the radish.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Au Natural Strawberry Fruit Roll Ups

Man, oh man! Where has time gone?! No, I haven't fallen into a black hole. No, I haven't given up on cooking (or eating). No, I haven't been traveling in the back country of some exotic place (unfortunately!). My silence has been the result of caring for a new baby in my life. Not a real baby (sorry, Mom)... THIS baby. I started my own photography business. On accident, almost. After photographing this friend and this friend and this friend and many others, it seemed like a natural progression of my work. And work it is! I love it, so it's the best kind of work... but on top of my full-time position here and a home remodel, sometimes it may seem that I have indeed fallen into a black hole.

Well, it is time to emerge at long last.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Candied Citrus Peel

I love citrus. It's so lovely that citrus season occurs in the cold of winter -- those bright, juicy sunshine-orbs ripening to perfection in the darkest days.

I've featured marmalade and cocktails made from our (six!) citrus trees in past blog posts. In the spirit of thinking ahead to holiday gifts and gatherings, I've fallen in love with candied citrus peel.  It's a bit of a process, but the results are worth it! Delicious, flavorful citrus peels last months in a sealed container in the fridge, and they are so pretty. Dipped in bittersweet chocolate puts them over the edge.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Joanne's Linzer Shortbread Cookies

Spending Thanksgiving with 20+ gourmet-minded family members on the east coast was totally inspiring. After not posting anything on my blog for months (and hearing about it nearly every day from some friend, family member or my own conscience), I was happy to return from a week on the other side of the county with ideas and momentum to cook, bake and get out my camera. The past months have mostly been a whirlwind of paperwork, construction, heavy lifting and dust as Bill and I begin the adventure of home ownership, junk clearing and renovation together. This work has indeed been inspiring... but in a very different way. Dreaming of our kitchen-to-be keeps me motivated!

It was nice to spend so much time focused on food this past week -- and to have some time to relax away from the hustle and bustle of all that's been happening at home. We spent Thanksgiving day at our family's beautiful Cape home, enjoying the unseasonably warm sun, looking out at the sparkling ocean. Inspiration is a given in a place like this!

Aside from the beautiful location, some of my food inspiration came from making and eating holiday dishes, some was from hovering over others with my camera.  Mostly hovering over Joanne, who always turns out the most reliably delicious desserts, in copious amounts. 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Ode to Tomatoes and the Open Face Tomato Sandwich

One of my favorite Pablo Neruda poems is Ode to TomatoesThere is hardly a month when I'm not thinking about tomatoes, and this poem often comes to mind as well. I've included it at the end of this post, if you've never read it, or if you, like me, don't get tired of reading it.  These prolific summer tomato months started for me last November when I fawned over seed catalogs and chose tomato varieties for the coming year. MLK Day marks the time I like to get the seeds planted in the greenhouse and then fuss over them while they grow through to April and May, when they are big enough and the ground is warm enough for them to be planted out.  The next few months involves staking, pruning, fertilizing, and dreaming... then tomatoes everywhere, always for a couple months that only seem precious when they are over. Just thinking about the end of tomato season makes me wax nostalgic. Luckily we're still wading in tomatoes! Rejoice! 

Heirloom Kiwi Tomatoes

Today I don't have an elaborate recipe. I have my own ode to tomatoes of sorts: photos and a suggestion for a  go-to, every day, throw-together meal that I could (and do) eat for days on end. 

Monday, August 6, 2012

Tamarind Sorbet or Agua Fresca

Yay tamarind! Before you skip over this, thinking tamarind is an exotic and strange thing that you have never heard of, don't know where to find, or don't care about...give tamarind a chance. It is an extraordinary fruit pulp that is quite delicious and surprisingly nutritious. This sweet-sour fruit (officially a legume), contains high amounts of potassium, calcium, iron, selenium, zinc and magnesium, as well as vitamins C and B and antioxidants. Quite a powerhouse of a fruit -- it's especially unusual to see a fruit with such high levels of iron and Vitamin B. And it is really delicious -- sweet, sour, tangy, addictive. I've used it in savory Indian dishes, as well as in sweet drinks and dessert. I've also seen tamarind candies at the Latino market coated with chili -- sweet and spicy. This recipe is an adaptable summer winner -- it can be churned into a refreshing sorbet or mixed with additional water and ice for sipping in the sun. It's sweet, yet not cloyingly so.

tamarind still in their pods