Up above, on the menu bar underneath the picture, you will see I have added a new menu that you can click on. It is called, “From My Kitchen.”
I have been cooking and baking for quite a number of years. About 8 months ago, I became a vegetarian. I also became much more and intensely interested in a healthier diet and becoming more self-reliant on the foods I grow, buy and prepare. So after many years of preparing meals and baking desserts, I feel now like a brand new cook.
I am shopping at farmers markets, organic and natural markets and when in typical supermarkets try to only shop the outer perimeter of the store except for staple items such as sugar, salt, flour, etc. I now prepare in bulk. I make my own mixes like pancakes, cake mixes, biscuits, corn muffin/ cornbread, scones, etc., so that all the dry is already prepared. Then when I would like to make pancakes for instance, I just have to scoop out the pre-mixed pancake mix that I prepared and add the wet ingredients. I find this easier than taking out baking soda, salt, powder and flour each and every time. I know what is in my own prepared mixes and can make them the way I like them.
I am relatively new to many grains like amaranth, millet, bulgur, teff, quinoa, farro, etc. I am new to wheat bran, amaranth flour, brown rice flour, oat flour, masa harina, buckwheat flour, just to name a few. I’ve been cooking and experimenting with these lately and using lots of lentils. I am going through cans of beans like never before too, which is a good thing. I am cooking dried beans much more recently too. The idea is to eat more whole foods.
I buy organic for most and try to buy seasonally. I have never made and consumed so many avocados, kale, dandelion greens, collard greens, cauliflower, beets and ginger to name a few.
I love making flavored oils, confits and pomodoro sauce in jars all ready to go. I have bought cases upon cases of Ball jars and am currently revamping my pantry. I am completely in love with Ball jars. They are great for so many things. Oh, I could go on and on! I fell in love with the Lock and Lock storage containers which are air tight recently too.
I’m cooking with coconut oil in some recipes and using soba noodles much more too.
Tomorrow we must start to prepare our garden. We are planning to add a new area so that we can grow a larger amount of fresh organic produce. My husband and I have recently talked about our lawn care. We opted to tell our caretaker of the property not to use any chemicals. We have chosen to thatch soon and not apply anything. We don’t know how the lawn will look, but that’s alright. To grow organic from the soil I think no chemicals could have been applied for three to five years. Since we have raised beds, we just bring in organic compost and fill in the beds.
I’ve been bugging my husband for the past few years to get some chickens. I would only like a few so that we could get our own fresh eggs. I have started looking at which birds I would like to order, but have controlled myself not to go ahead until he is on the same page with me. I have a strange fear of birds. So although I want to have some, I have told my husband I cannot touch them! At least I don’t think so, maybe I could change. That is why I have to wait for him to want them too. After all, we did grow up in the city and are not familiar with having our own farm animals. Sure I would love a rooster and a goat too, but no way will he go along with this idea. Would you believe that yesterday there was a special report on chickens in the home backyard. I recorded it so that I could show him how popular it is becoming all across the nation. The report is on the backyard chicken boom. If you would like to see the video, click here:
I am trying to use sustainable foods, choosing my fork over knife meals, being plant-based and in general trying to leave a softer footprint. As I pursue new ingredients and recipes, I would like, from time to time, to share what is going on in my kitchen with you.