Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Eating Seasonally

Throughout time, people have eaten with the season out of necessity. In our modern world, eating foods that are out of season is common. There are benefits to eating foods that are in season. Energy consumption from storage is reduced. Transportation costs to transport food to areas where it is not currently in season is avoided. There is also data that suggests our bodies crave and benefit from eating foods that are in season. To learn more about eating seasonally visit: How to Eat Seasonally

A favorite seasonal food of winter is nuts and seeds. This is because nuts and seeds harvested in the fall can be stored without energy consumption throughout the winter. The native Americans had a process for harvesting, storing and using acorns that I find fascinating. Acorns are the fruit of the oak tree and are abundant in many places. To use acorns the tannins must be leached from them.

To use other types of nuts, raw peanuts, raw black walnuts, or any other raw nut your heart desires, I suggest making raw nut butters. The are created by adding a small amount of raw honey to the nuts in a food processor and processing well. Yum!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Tomatoes from the Garden

Obviously harvest is over and it is time to cook using the bounty from the garden. I have experimented with various ways to use the tomatoes I grow. I have found freezing tomatoes, rather than canning them is the most efficient way to store them. Why?

Canning skin-free tomatoes requires blanching. I have a few canning recipes that do not require the tomatoes to be peeled, or blanched, prior to canning. However, freezing tomatoes causes the skin to become loose, when you thaw them, the skin slides off easily. Freezing is also the healthiest way to preserve food.

I freeze my garden tomatoes and thaw them to add them to stews, sauces and pastas all winter. If I want to make spaghetti sauce, I simply thaw them, slide the skins off, then puree them and cook them in a sauce pan with some spices.

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