Sunday, January 31, 2010
To visit the site click here.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Tarator is an awesome cold yogurt soup. It's a staple and one of the dishes that is approachable for foreigners - i.e., not too exotic...Tarator300-400g cucumbers (10.5-14ozs)1/2 kg yogurt (1 pound, 1 oz)7-8 chopped walnut kernels5-6 cloves garlic crushed1 teaspoon vinegar1 tablespoon olive oil1/3 cup chopped dillsalt to taste1. Peel and dice cucumbers2. Beat yogurt with fork or whisk, thin with water until soup consistency, and pour over cukes3. Add walnuts4. Thoroughly crush garlic, add vinegar, and add to soup5. Add oil, salt and dillBaked Feta in Gyuveche (also called Gyuvechete)400g Bulgarian feta (~14 oz) (note: BG feta is different than regular Greek feta. It's a bit more sour, and is more wet - it's stored in water like mozzarella)4 tablespoons butter4 tomatoes2 bunches green onions (or 2 onions)4 eggs4 roasted chili peppers (optional)This dish is prepared in small, single serving ceramic or oven-safe bowls, with lids. It is served hot, out of the oven, with fresh bread1. Put 1 tablespoon of butter in each bowl (note: Rali doesn't use butter so I don't think you need it)2. Chop onions, dice tomatoes, and crumble cheese (or cut in small cubes)3. Break 1 egg over mixture in each bowl4. Cover bowls and bake for about 10 minutes in moderate oven (350?)5. Remove lids, put a chili pepper in each bowl, serve.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Sunday, January 24, 2010
There was a time when I didn't drink wine. That all changed when we settled the farm here at the gateway to Virginia's wine country. With 2 wineries no more than 15 minutes from my door, how could I not try them out, and discover what I'd missed out on? Which has led to numerous empty glass bottles...and a pile of corks. Dealing with the bottles is easy...you hang them from trees (thanks to Sister Dawn for that inspiration) or haul them to the recycling center if you prefer. But, what about the corks? They're kind of cool and all, but after awhile they start to pile up...A quick visit to Feast! in Charlottesville (an epicurean's dream) turned up the answer, and some rather disturbing statistics. Apparently, billions (yes with a "B") of wine corks end up in landfills every year. That's not good! Especially since they can be recycled into so many things (insulation, soil conditioner, building materials, etc. etc. etc.). The only tricky thing is finding a place to turn them in. That's why Carpet Plus has started Re-cork C'ville. Take your natural wine corks to one of the drop off locations they've set up, then they'll convey them to a cork recycling facility.Unfortunately, they don't have any drop off locations in Richmond (at least, not yet), and I'm not aware of any similar local program (again, at least not yet). Still, this would be a perfectly good excuse to take a ride to the mountains...and sample all that C'ville has to offer, yes?Learn more at: http://www.carpetplusonline.com/recork/
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Find Fruit unlocks cities, enabling you to explore in new ways. Instead of being trapped in the concrete jungle, this app is your key to the edible urban forest! Find Fruit helps you find fresh fruit growing down the street and learn more about fruit trees.Features:Location of thousands of trees on public land nationwide on a standard Google Map.Current location or zipcode/address enabled search.Directions from your current location.Configurable fruit tree search by seasonality, type of tree, proximity, and number of trees displayed.Usage, description and factoids for all available fruit types, ranging from the pedestrian Apple, to the exotic Yellow Mangosteen!Beautiful and informative illustrations to help identify the fruit.Intuitive and fun interface!Requirements:iPhone OS2.0 or later
Saturday, January 16, 2010
I have been getting Black Hand Coffee through Fall Line Farms, and have loved it, so when I found out they have a shop at 606 North Sheppard Street, I had to check it out. The laid back shop in the Museum District roasts its own beans, and makes one of the best lattes (my coffee drink of choice, always) ever. I talked with Chris, the shop's roaster, who has been at Black Hand for nearly a year. The roasts range from light to very dark and oily, and are sold whole bean or ground in a reusable tin. Go there for the coffee and for Flour Garden breads and pastries. (Photo courtesy of Black Hand Coffee Company)
Friday, January 15, 2010
Michael Ableman is one of this year's featured speakers. An excerpt from the VABF page reads... "Michael champions the cause of sustainable agriculture through books, films, television and many public presentations. During the last 50 years we have lost over 5 million acres of arable farmland to real estate development in Virginia. If this trend continues, there will not be much farmland or forested land in this state. Can you imagine the entire state of Virginia as one connected urban and suburban sprawl? Michael Ableman will suggest that islands of land preserved for farming and forestry could exist within this future landscape.
Other Conference speakers will discuss permaculture, composting, seed saving, pastured poultry, raspberries, heirloom vegetables, beekeeping, biological controls of insects and diseases, tomatoes and mushrooms. We will have two presentations on food safety. We will have three of the best representatives in Virginia on hand to talk about state and federal government programs that support agriculture. We have two personnel from Berea College in Kentucky who can describe how small liberal arts colleges might become engaged in agriculture. We will have two excellent film presentations and one tour of an incredible composting operation."
Thursday, January 14, 2010
3 boneless, skinless chicken breast
2 large fennel bulbs
1/2 tsp. dried, minced orange peal
2 tbsp. olive oil
3 tbsp. lemon juice
2 whole navel oranges
1 tsp. dried thyme
French Grey Sea Salt
Fresh Ground Black Pepper
Using a baking dish with a lid coat the bottom of the dish with olive oil. Lay the chicken breast in a single layer on the bottom. Coat the chicken with lemon juice top and bottom. Cut one of the oranges into 8ths and squeeze the juice over the chicken. Discard the rest of the orange. Cut the peal from the second orange and slice the orange cross ways into disk and lay them over top of the chicken. You should have two orange disk for each chicken breast. Sprinkle the thyme, dried orange peal, over top and add salt and pepper. Core and half one large fennel bulb, removing the outer layer if it's browned or puckered at all. Slice the fennel halves into 1/3 inch thick slices. I put the slices from one half of the bulb in the dish with the chicken soaking in the lemon and orange juices. Cover and let sit for 20 minutes. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until done.
While the chicken was sitting... I made a side dish of Whole Wheat Pasta with olive oil, sauteed mushrooms, onions, garlic, roasted fennel, Green Olives, a 1/2 cup of Parmesan with a local hard cheese, and a little bit of feta cheese. Put the water on for the pasta. Chop the second bulb of fennel the same as the first. Coat the fennel with olive oil and lay out in a single layer on a baking sheet. I just do my in the oven at 350, turning about every 10 minutes until the fennel is tender, lightly browned and somewhat translucent. While the fennel is cooking saute the onions, mushrooms and garlic then set them aside until the chicken is done cooking and the pasta is ready.
Once the chicken is done baking take it out to set for a few minute and use the time to mix the pasta with all the ingredients... a single large green olive cut into somewhat thin segments and a tablespoon of feta were added per serving.
I will definitely make this again. We had mixed greens with a tarragon mustard vinaigrette along with this. In the end we both ate the chicken mixed with the pasta, enjoying the flavor of the fennel with the orange and green olives. The feta was actually added to the left overs and was not originally included, but I decided it was an improvement.
For another delicious idea check out this Citrus Salad recipe from Mark Bittman's January 15th column in the New York Times. His column 'The Minimalist' is wonderful for simple in season recipes.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
5th Annual GROWING FOR MARKET WORKSHOP
Saturday, Jan. 31st
9:00 - 5:00 pm
Location: J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College Western
Campus 1851 Dickenson Rd. Goochland, VA 23063
• Vegetable Production
• Small Fruit & Berry Production
• Marketing—Creating a Farm Brochure
• Web Basics & Social Media for Farmers
• Backyard Poultry Production
• Tomato Grafting
• Shiitake Mushrooms
• Seed Saving
• Specialty Niche Markets
To register go to:http://5thgrowersworkshop.eventbrite.com/
Scholarships are available in limited quantity. If you are interested in a scholarship, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org and answer the following three questions:
1) Why do you need a scholarship for this workshop?
2) What are your future plans for using the knowledge gained from the workshop?
3) Are you willing to volunteer at the workshop?
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Just wanted to let you all know that we are hosting a Vegan beer dinner on January 17th at 6pm. The tickets are $45 which is tax and tip included. There are five courses and five beers. Should be alot of fun. Last years was amazing!Tickets are on sale at rvanews.comThanks!KendraIpanema Cafe917 W. Grace St.213-0190
Friday, January 8, 2010
Let's start with one Matt and I made this fall. We had an over abundance of late season peppers. We had hot peppers in many forms and red, orange, and green sweet peppers. By late October we had harvested all of our sweet peppers. This left us with lots of green peppers, in particular Anaheim peppers which are perfect for roasting. We roasted them by the arm load! Just lightly coat the skin with olive oil, sometimes this step is not even necessary, and place on the grill over medium high heat. Check and turn them regularly until the flesh is cracking and chard. To read more about roasting peppers, and peeling them click here. We peel, slice, bag and freeze them in smaller bags so they are ready to season soups and chili into the winter.
We have also been turning to a Turkey Andouille Sausage that Ellwood Thompson sells. I will state right now that I know nothing about the company that makes this sausage. This fall I caved in and gave it a try. It great for us because I only eat fish and poultry. I have talked to multiple vendors at the farmer's markets and they all said that producing sausages from poultry is too complicated and cost prohibitive for their small operations. So while my red meat eating husband can find anything he wants at the market I turned to this Andouille sausage from Ellwood's. I thought this sausage would be great with roasted peppers some fresh greens and some of my dried black eyed peas or white beans. The soup turned out wonderfully!!! Here is what we used in the end:
4(?_ quarts Vegetable stock
1 double handful of roasted Anaheim peppers coarsely chopped(Roasted Sweet Peppers would be fine if that's what you have)
3 small heads of roasted garlic
3 links of Turkey Andouille sausage cooked in a skilled and sliced into 1/4 inch pieces
Multiple handfuls of Swiss Chard (remove stem, chop stem and then coarsely chop greens. Be aware that if you use the red veined chard your soup will take on a pink hue. If this doesn't appeal to you use the white veined chard or another green such as kale. In the case of kale discard the stems. )
2 medium-large onions finely chopped
2 hot peppers, deseeded and finely minced
About 2 cups pre-cooked or canned beans
Salt and Fresh ground pepper
I may have thrown in Thyme and Marjoram to taste
Remember all these measurements are after the fact "guesstamations". The import thing is to add ingredients in ratios that taste good to you.
Bring the soup to a hard boil and then cook over medium-med. low heat so that it is simmering but not at a hard boil. I just tossed the onions in the broth, but cooking the onions in a tablespoon or two of olive oil at the bottom of your stock pot and then adding the broth over top will add a richer flavor. If using chard, add the leaf greens shortly before serving as they will cook very quickly.
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
We now accept #5 plastics for recycling! Please drop the cleaned items in the Preserve Gimme 5 bin next to the exit door. Your item will be turned into new Preserve products, like a toothbrush or razor handle.