food

All posts tagged food

Can it!

Published July 31, 2018 by lynn k scott

Several years ago, I reacquainted myself with the soon-to-be lost art of canning food.  While I am definitely no expert, I’ve managed to can all sorts of food.

I have been a bit lax on canning while I’ve been dealing with my health, the time for resuming preserving food is at hand.  Over the last few days, I have made and canned vegetable broth and tomatoes.

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The vegetable broth is really a piece of cake.  I take the veggies I have, whether from storing them in the freezer or from the fridge, cut them up, put them in the crockpot, add some filtered water and cook on low for 10 hours.  Remove the veggies, drain the broth through a fine mesh sieve and some cheese cloth and then canning commences.  If you’re into composting the cooked veggies can be composted.

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The tomatoes, on the other hand, are one of the most tedious items to can (imho).  Yet, there are so many options for canning them.  For this particular canning, I chose to use remove the tomato peel by blanching the tomatoes in boiling water.  Then the tomatoes go into ice water to stop the cooking process.

After removing the skin, I rough chop the tomatoes and place in a blender and pulse it a few times.  I complete several batches of this and all the tomatoes are placed in a pot and brought up to temperature so then can be ladled into hot jars and canned.

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I have a pressure canner, which I can double as a water-bath canner.  At one point, I had both, but it took up a lot of space.  I will note that certain foods (normally acidic, jams, jellies) use a water bath while other foods require the use of a pressure canner (stocks, vegetables, meat, soups).

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With my change in diet and for the health of my family, I will work at diligently canning more foods to have on hand.  I typically only can what we eat within a year (typical shelf life of home-canned goods).  It’s a great way to use seasonal fruits and vegetables, while they are affordable.  I love opening a can of tomatoes in November that I canned in the summer.  You can still smell the vine.

 

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Just another cancer – related update

Published July 17, 2018 by lynn k scott

I have been steadily changing my diet over the last couple weeks.  I will have to say, I actually feel a lot better.  To some, the dietary changes may be extreme.  I believe it’s easier for me, from all the other attempts at dietary changes, because my life literally depends on me being successful.

There have been two times I have “cheated”.  They have been small cheats such as eating soy sauce (has gluten) and I forgot the other cheat.  Anyway, since my body has been eating healthier, it really didn’t care for my choice to upset its new-found balance.  I have done those cheats before, but this time the reaction was stronger.  I have dedicated myself to not doing that again.  I really don’t like the reactions I had and repeat performances won’t be necessary.

I am using my new juicer at least every other day.  I am loving the combinations.  I am using less fruit and even added a few new vegetables.  I’m not really a spinach fan, but am finding it’s pretty good mixed with carrots and ginger, among other vegetables.

I am trying new food combinations.  For example, made lentils for the first time the other day.  Yesterday, I made lentil tacos (no cheese or sour cream) and they were really good.  The more I go without dairy, the more I don’t miss it.

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I have been able to lend support to a friend who’s mother is Stage IV in her cancer battle.  It feels nice to be able to give back to a fellow cancer warrior.

I have also decided, I’m not putting off purchases because of “what ifs”.  I am taking back what the cancer tried to steal from me.  It will not be successful in making me second guess my life and its longevity.  As I have stated before, I have handed this over to God and he is in complete control.  He has brought such peace, that I can’t possibly fully describe the feeling.

I recently made a vehicle purchase.  It wasn’t the right time (credit wise), however, my other vehicle chose to push the envelope, so good-bye pickup, hello challenger.

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It’s almost been a year since I heard those horrible words, “you have cancer”.  Gone from sadness to anger to acceptance to fighting.  I will be successful.  I have cancer but it doesn’t have me!

Cancer Hope

Published July 5, 2018 by lynn k scott

I am part of an online Christian homeschool group.  I have been blessed to part of this group.  They offer support and encouragement in homeschooling and every day living.

I had posted a difficult post asking for some recommendations.  In addition to the information I had asked for, I was given the name of a person to contact.  As it turns out, this person had a very similar diagnosis to mine.

We exchanged messages yesterday and she was the blessing I needed to receive.  After almost a year since diagnosis, I had finally connected to someone I could relate to.  Like I have, she had turned her care over to God after her surgery.  She changed her diet and is now cancer-free.

I am currently in the process of changing my diet.  While science and doctors would admonish my decision to omit their “expert” advice, what I have received so far from them has been less than productive in my battle with cancer.

While I can’t speak for what others should do, I find her story to be extremely encouraging and it has given me new hope; hope I was struggling with.

 

hear me lord

She’s going to be a veg-head

Published February 9, 2018 by lynn k scott

My 12-year old daughter came to me the other night and asked if she could become a vegetarian.  I was not as surprised as my husband, because I have been watching her eating habits (and I buy her food).

After asking her reasoning for wanting to, discussing the foods she would be giving up and making sure she would increase certain foods, to which she consented to, I agreed.  I was a vegetarian for a decade, at one point, so I would be able to help her make sound dietary decisions.

Her dad is less than a happy camper.  I blame it on his carnivorous side.  He gave me grief the entire time we were dating and even after we were married, about not eating meat.  He forgets, I would make dual meals; for him and myself.  He is also worried she will be picked on when she doesn’t eat the same foods her friends eat.  I give her friends more credit than he apparently is.  This is his only baby girl and I think he’s not ready for her to grow up and make more decisions on her own.

That being said, I also took her new endeavor as a way to add it to her homeschool life.  It’s great for nutrition, label-reading, discussions on ingredients, proper food combining, recipe research and essays.  I give her so much credit and am so proud of her.  She is taking this seriously.  I often get calls/texts at work telling me about a new website she’s been to regarding being a vegetarian.  She’s excited to share what she’s found.

I have told her how proud I am of her.  I loved being a veg-head.  I reiterated several times, that in this dietary journey, if she’s not willing to eat the proper foods, I will not allow her to be a full vegetarian.  I have expanded my dietary palate, over the years, which will provide additional knowledge for my daughter.

While I doubt I will ever go back to being 100% vegetarian, I welcome this change to bring more vegetarian dishes to our table (same meat dishes for the hubby) and see how she does.  Who knows, she may choose to stick with this; only time will tell.

Must have Pot!

Published February 17, 2017 by lynn k scott

…the Instant Pot that is!

I admit it…I’m a kitchen gadget-holic.  I don’t go to meetings, because I openly acknowledge my appliance, gadget, cookware addiction.  I embrace it!

This past December, at my husband’s company Christmas party, I was able to select the Instant Post Duo 7-in-1 Pressure Cooker.  I had been eyeing this for quite some time, however, being the cheap-o that I am, refused to shell out $100+ for another gadget.  Plus, my husband might’ve divorced me.  I buy kitchen gadgets/appliances like he buys car parts (5 cars/2 drive…just saying).                                                                                                                     20170111_183616.jpg

Needless to say…I am addicted!!!  Some people call it a “magic pot” and it can feel that way.  When I can cook an entire, whole chicken in 25 minutes…it’s a bit magical.  Granted, it’s a pressure cooker, not an oven, so there’s no crispy skin.  Some people will pop that chicken into the oven for 5-10 minutes to crisp the skin, but I don’t normally eat the skin anyway.   I also love using chicken quarters (pictured) and shredding them for tacos or enchiladas.

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While the chicken is resting, let’s use some of that leftover cooking liquid and make some rice pilaf!  There’s even a rice button.  It doesn’t get simpler than that.

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Chicken not your thing?

What about hard-boiled eggs?  Can you believe just 4 minutes in the Instant Pot (commonly referred to as the IP), 4 minutes of natural release and 4 minutes in an ice bath.  Done!  The shells peel off much easier too.

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Trying to eat healthier…how about some homemade Greek yogurt?  I go through a lot of yogurt.  For gluten-free yogurt, it costs just under $3.50 for a 32-ounce container.  For about $2.50, I can turn an entire gallon of milk into a 64-ounces yogurt.  Then I strain it from the whey and I have Greek yogurt.  The whey can be used in making bread, smoothies and all sorts of baking options.  Take some of the yogurt, blend in some berries (maybe a bit of honey) and make homemade yogurt pops…DELICIOUS!

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One of the best aspects of the Instant Pot is I can come home, make a meal that takes hours in just about 30-minutes.  I used to use the crock pot.  However, that would finish hours before I got home, turn itself to warm and sometimes the meat would be dry.  No more. Those days are over!

There’s a Facebook group IP Community.   There’s another Facebook group just for IP recipes!  My addiction has come “full circle” and I’ve added a second Instant Pot to my counter tops.  I couldn’t help myself.  The first one was free (from the party) and there was one at the flea market, brand new, for $50 (SQUEAL of excitement)!!!  Ok, so I took the money from my truck payment; don’t judge me.  I just had to have it.  My husband rolled his eyes.  He knew it was coming home with us.

I have the ability to have an IP just for making yogurt and one for savory dishes.

So, if you’re a foodie…this is a kitchen must-have.  If you’re going to a wedding or housewarming…bring an Instant Pot and you’ll be the favored guest for quite some time.

 

A Sandwich Inspired by Mom

Published August 9, 2016 by lynn k scott

I would venture to say that food is one of the most important things in our lives (besides for nutrition) that bind us to family, other people and cultures.  We grow up eating a variety of food, mostly influenced by our parents and then we develop our own likes and dislikes and venture further into the culinary journey that helps make us who we are.

My mom was a decent baker, but horrible cook.  When I say horrible, she would admit it, especially after one of our dogs refused her meal.  Seriously!  The dog snubbed his nose at human food.  It was pretty funny at the time and still makes me smile some 30+ years later.  That being said, she did introduce to me to one sandwich, that even to this day, I will still make from time to time.

I will preface the sandwich that I have always been a bit odd when it comes to unique sandwich combos.  Then having spent 25% of my life as vegetarian, can’t believe I can actually even state that figure…but I digress, I ate this sandwich then too.

Ok, here it is…and don’t knock it til ya tried it:  olive and cream cheese sandwich.  It’s relatively easy.  Take your favorite olives, or combination thereof, and dice ’em up.  Add the olives to softened cream cheese and mix.  Now, you can stop there and make a sandwich straight away.

OR…..

Get creative…add a bit of lettuce or perhaps alpha sprouts.  Top with a tomato and then the olive spread.  Perhaps you want to use a hoagie roll or toast your bread of choice?  I’m in California…add an avocado…we put that on everything.  I would post a picture, but I ate my sandwich before snapping a picture.  Sorry, it was just that good!

When all is said and done, it’s a sandwich from my childhood.  It’s a memory of my mom.  It’s one of my comfort foods.

Watermelon Popsicles

Published July 17, 2016 by lynn k scott

If it’s summer, that means there’s watermelon.  It’s one of the few foods that I have to consume as soon as the seedless melon hits the shelves.  Yes, I do the seedless, it’s worth the extra ten cents per pound.  Keep reading and you’ll understand the necessity as well as the preference.

In my quest to eat healthier, I prefer homemade popsicles to store bought.  Each year, I experiment more with flavor combinations.  It would appear I have started a collection of popsicle molds; I’m up to four now.  So far this year, it’s been relatively simple creations. I’ve taken frozen mixed berries, blended them smooth.  Sometimes,  I will add a bit of pomegranate juice to thin out the berries for pouring.  The mixed berries offer a nice, sweet flavor and tend to be a bit more cost efficient than buying several quantities of blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries all at the same time.

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I have also blended up watermelon and added bits of fresh strawberries to the mold.  So a nice refreshing taste with a hint of strawberry here and there.  It’s a great way to use up some of that large watermelon you had every intention of eating, but half of it is still in the fridge.

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This past weekend, I stopped by my local produce stand and they had yellow watermelon. How I have not heard of this previously, is beyond me. However, I had to try it.  It looks just like regular watermelon, only yellow.  I personally think, it’s a bit sweeter than its red counterpart.

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Last night, I chose to make my first layered popsicle.  The bottom of the mold was mixed berries and the top was yellow watermelon.  When unmolding, the watermelon would become the bottom and the berries would be the top.  I need to play around with this more, but they turned out really well and were super yummy.On the days it’s too hot to cook and you can’t imagine eating, I have no issues with eating a few popsicles to hold me over until it cools off a bit to think about making food.  After all, it’s 100% fruit and it’s good for you!  I am still thinking up new creations to add to my popsicle recipe list.  I’m working on how to incorporate yogurt for an ever more satisfying, and filling popsicle.

wp-1468773772641.jpgDo you make homemade popsicles?  What are some of the ingredients you like to use?

 

 

 

 

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