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Monday, August 29, 2005

Attention Grocery Shoppers!

Columbus' first Whole Foods market will be opening on 161 (near the Trader Joe's) on September 7th. Numerous festivities are planned.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

for lisa ann: freezer jam

i made stawberry freezer jam earlier this summer and it was so easy. i highly recommend it. this blog entry outlines the whole process. i used the exact same method and it worked perfectly.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

New (to me) veggie: Water Spinach


Well, one of the good things about living in the belly button of the old USA is that we have AMAZING farmer's markets. Weekly I purchase my eggs, cheese, meat, fruits, and veggies from several local farmers-- most of the them are organic. This week I purchased water spinach from a Vietnamese farming family. Not only did thay have some interesting herbs, cucumbers, and roots, they had what they called "water spinach." I was told that water spinach can be used in stir-fries and in salads. It has long thin leaves and hallow stocks. I looked up it up on epicurious.com and they only had one measely and boring recipe. However a google search led me to several tastey Vietnamese dishes. Last night, Zac and I made a tastey stir-fry with with tomatoes.

Be on the look out for this mild green that is so much more than regular spinich!

Monday, August 15, 2005

Just Food: Episode One (Blueberry Peach Jam)

Ashley and I have made our very first food vlog entry (vlog = video + blog). It's rough, but it's a fun first start. In this quicktime video, we take you through the steps of making blueberry peach jam. The video only tells the highlights of the recipe so make sure you check out the text below before actually attempting to make it.

link to video
Watch: captioned or uncaptioned

This recipe from the book "Gourmet Preserves" by Madelaine Bullwinkel:

Blueberry Peach Jam
Yield: 4 pints

2 lb. Peaches (3 C peeled and chopped)
½ C water
1 lb. Blueberries (about a pint)
2 Tbsp. Lemon juice
3 C sugar

Dip the peaches in boiling water for about 30 seconds. Move to an iced water bath. When cool enough to handle, peel off skins, pit, and slice. Combine peaches with water in a deep, non-reactive 5-quart saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil. Uncover and simmer, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes. Peaches will become thick with bubbles.

Stir in the blueberries, cover the pan, and return the mixture to a boil. Uncover and simmer for an additional 10 minutes, stirring. Add lemon juice, then sugar ½ cup at a time, waiting for liquid to return to a boil before adding more. Simmer for 5-10 minutes, or until thickened.

Fill hot, sterilized jars to within ¼ inch of lips. Wipe the rims clean, attach new, sterilized lids, and screw caps on tightly. Process jars in a boiling water canner, submerged by 1 inch, for ten minutes.

Check after a couple hours to see if they've sealed properly (or listen for a pop). If any jars remain unsealed after several hours, refrigerate and eat immediately. Use jam within one year. Look at the food carefully when you open your jars to check for spoilage and throw it away if it looks moldy or smells funny at all.

Warning: Please do not make this recipe without knowing the proper procedure for home canning. You can find more information about canning safety (and specific info about canning fruit) from our friends at OSU.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Make Your Own Heirloom Tomato Salad















While at the downtown Worthington farmers' market (on High Street) with Ben and Ashley, I discovered the people who are supplying Northstar's heirloom tomatoes: Northridge Organic Farm. You can find them in the Worthington farmer's market on Saturdays and at Upper Arlington market on Wednesdays. Truly amazing! I especially love the deliciously earthy purple ones.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Heirloom Tomato Goodness

In honor of summer, Northstar is serving a special local organic heirloom tomato salad. The salad features a whole pound of various heirloom varietals (red, green, yellow, purple), a dash or bleu cheese, some focaccia, and a simple vinaigrette. It looks beautiful on the plate and tastes even better. Get it now!

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Tuesday Vegetarian Buffet At Sher-E-Punjab

If you are ever looking for a hearty meal on a Tuesday, check out the all-vegetarian buffet at Sher-e-Punjab (in the same shopping plaza as Restaurant Japan where Old Henderson meets Kenney). With the absence of meat, the chef puts out some dishes that push beyond the standard north Indian restaurant fare. My personal favorite was a refreshing cold dish: aloo chana chaat. I also rather enjoyed enjoyed the dosa, filled with potato and onion curry. Some dishes were certainly better than others (the sambar, for example, was a little bland). Nevertheless, the Tuesday vegetarian buffet is well worth checking out.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Pineapple Yumminess

Pineapple Yumminess

Ingredients:
--Pineapple, fresh, cored and skinned.
--Lots o butter.
--White or brown sugar.

Prep:

Wash the pineapple, scrub it. Trim the skin off the pineapple, set aside. Cut the pineapple in half after trimming the top and bottom. Cut in quarters, trim the core from the quarters. Set the core aside. In a shallow dish pour lots of sugar (brown or white). Dust/coat the pineapple lengths in sugar. In a medium skillet heat lots o butter over medium heat. Place the sugared pineapple in the skillet, brown each side. Drizzle the sugary gooey stuff from the skillet over the pineapple. Serve. (Oh you should have dinner first.) Remember, butter and sugar are good for you. Really, they are.

Now all those pineapple "parts" you set aside, toss them in a pitcher. Pour cold water and maybe some more sugar over the the pineapple remains. Chill, drink, yum. You can add some organe juice to the mixture if you really want...

Friday, August 05, 2005

Wild Mushroom Summer Salad

Abby and I recently made a pilgrimage to Jungle Jims (more on that soon). From the great selection of ingredients, we improvised a lovely dinner salad.













Ingredients:


yellow summer squash
pom-pom and chanterelle mushrooms (or any other robust wild mushroom)
smoked mozzarella
mini zucchini
arugula
garlic
salt
balsamic vinegar
red wine
olive oil

Procedures:

1) Saute chopped, salted mushrooms in about a tablespoon of olive oil and several tablespoons of red wine for about 5 minutes.
2) Add chopped yellow squash, mini zucchini, and crushed garlic. Saute until tender.
3) Take off the heat and stir in chunks of smoke mozzarella. The cheese should soften but not completely melt.
4) Let the ingredients cool to room temperature. (We didn't do this, mind you, because we were hungry and couldn't wait).
5) Toss all the cooked ingredients with arugula, splash of balsamic and oil, and a pinch of salt. Serve with the red wine you used to cook it.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

An old favorite - Hoppin' John

I'm inspired by the bounty of my friend Pam's garden - she brought me bags & bags of veggies this weekend. She has tomatoes and zucchini in particularly large quantities. This recipe has helped me in the past to figure out what to do with it all.

My mom makes this and other vegetable-based dishes to perfection. We always eat this on new year's day (along with collard greens) to bring money & luck for the year.

Hoppin' John

--1 can black-eyed peas (rinse them thoroughly, or use dried)
--An equal quantity of fresh tomatoes, chopped
--1 large fresh jalapeno, seeded and diced
--Lots of cooked white rice

Sautee the jalapeno in a little olive oil until soft. Add the tomatoes and peas and simmer until the tomatoes soften and reduce, and the peas are heated through (I usually let it go for about 20 minutes).

Add the cooked rice (I like a 1:1 ratio of rice to veggies - you could use more rice), mix well and heat through.

Eat!