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Archive for October, 2011

Banana-fana-fo-fana

Banana squash!  These brutes are B.I.G.  I picked up one the size of a fireplace log and cut into it, thinking I’d cook it down while I made quiche Friday.  Well!!  Cutting it required some muscle.  The skin was not thick or terribly tough, but getting through an 8″ diameter squash took some doing.

Eat your heart out.

I sliced it into 2″ rings and scooped out the big seeds.  Then I piled the rings into two 11″ x 4″ pans and baked them at 350 degrees for a while.  Then I let them cool in the oven and pretty much forgot about them until bedtime.

Then I was in trouble.

I decided to go ahead and process the squash even though it was 9:30pm.  I though for sure I’d be done by 10pm.  Nope.  8.5 pints later, I cleaned up the kitchen as the oven clock read 11:45pm.  Yeeeeeeeah.

Lessons learned:

  • Banana squash is easier to peel when it is warm and somewhat mushy.
  • Squash is more fun to process when you are not sleepwalking to do it.
  • Banana squash is on the drier side so adding liquid when pureeing is a must.  Enter: new use for whey!!
  • My Kitchen Aid refurb food processor is meant to process about  2 cups at a time.  At this rate, a large banana squash will take exactly 2.6 years to process.
  • Stephen Colbert will help the time pass more quickly!  But only if you remember to hulu him before your hands are covered in yellow goo.

The end.

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Monday

  • pumpkin custard and yogurt; fried chicken skin; broth
  • steak; broccoli; delicata squash?
  • slow-cooked chicken, carrots, celery and onions

Tuesday

  • leftover banana pancakes; broth
  • chicken and carrots leftovers
  • stir-fry with leftover steak, broccoli, green peppers, onions

Wednesday

  • leftover custard and yogurt; broth
  • leftover white meat (diced), zucchini, onions
  • brown bag – Applegate Farms sliced turkey roll-ups with raw goat cheddar and cilantro; apples; muffins

Thursday

  • quiche; juice?
  • frozen winter melon soup; muffins
  • burgers with fermented mustard; green beans; lacto-fermented pickles; last garden tomato

Friday

  • pancakes; broth? juice?
  • undecided – either cod/summer squash/onions or fried eggs/chicken skins
  • slow-cooked brisket; butternut squash; broccoli

Saturday

  • fried eggs and chicken skin; juice? (head to farmers market?)
  • undecided – cod, if not served Friday or leftover brisket, if there is enough
  • lamb stew? or pumpkin chili

Sunday

  • leftover pancakes; broth (if lamb stew on Saturday)
  • leftover quiche
  • leftover brisket

For snacks, we will have in-season fruit, some almond butter candy, and nuts/dates.  I went to price-match Aldi’s $0.99 pineapples at Walmart today, and they had none!  Not even a place for display.  I am thinking they lost money the last time Aldi’s did that! :)

Azure Standard order comes Tuesday.  No oranges this time :( but lots of apples and onions on the way.  I still have over 100 lbs of winter squash and pumpkin to deal with, too.  I am eager to see how this week pans out veggie-wise; we may be able to limit purchases next week too!  Since I have to replace my windows before it gets cold, I am squeezing every penny!!

I estimate our food costs to be about $70 this week.  That’s under budget and the extra $5 is going toward my windows!  heehee ;)  I’d like to try a few new recipes but I feel so frazzled right now that it is a little overwhelming.  I did write my kids’ exams yesterday so I feel like I’ve accomplished a monumental task!!

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Fresh vegetables:

  • Napa cabbage
  • broccoli
  • zucchini
  • Swiss chard
  • green peppers
  • one tomato
  • celery
  • carrots
  • onions
  • garlic
  • cilantro
  • butternut squash
  • spaghetti squash
  • one delicata squash
  • assorted pumpkins

Frozen vegetables:

  • green beans
  • broccoli
  • green peas
  • butternut squash
  • tomatoes

Fresh fruits:

  • grapes
  • lemons
  • one pear
  • overripe bananas
  • apples (arrive from Azure on Tuesday)
  • pineapple – if I pick up tomorrow

Frozen fruits:

  • peaches
  • apples
  • blueberries
  • cranberries
  • blackberries
  • strawberries

Soup bones:

  • Beef
  • Lamb
  • Chicken

Meat:

  • beef brisket
  • beef steaks
  • ground beef
  • beef roast?
  • beef organs (I KNOW they are in there somewhere!!)
  • chicken drums
  • chicken wings
  • whole chickens
  • chicken skins
  • chicken organs (I KNOW they are in there…probably hiding with the beef livers!)
  • pork steaks?
  • cooked turkey
  • turkey sausages
  • turkey deli meat
  • meatloaf?? (may require digging.)
  • cod
  • tuna (canned)
  • sardines (canned)

Other mainstays:

  • eggs
  • milk
  • yogurt
  • butter
  • pickles
  • sauerkraut
  • salsa
  • almond butter
  • almonds
  • brazil nuts
  • hazelnuts
  • walnuts
  • honey
  • dates

If pineapples are on sale tomorrow, I will pick up a few.  Otherwise, I will not purchase food this week.  Well…maybe eggs if my menu seems egg-heavy.

Menu to come.

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Fall is here!  The nippy weather is putting me in the mood for chili.  I had a single serving frozen from our last batch, so I ate that for lunch today.  I’d like to try this pumpkin chili recipe, though!  Since I’ve still got about 100lbs of different pumpkins & squashes sitting around waiting to be used, I may as well get creative.  :)

I think that other than ensuring the beans are GAPS-friendly, I will make this recipe fairly close to the original.  I may add extra ground beef and I’ll probably use frozen or fresh veggies rather than canned, as well.  Now if I can just find a good GAPS cornbread substitute!

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Cupcakes

I’ve got a birthday boy who is already jonesing for something sweet.  We’ve discussed cupcakes, and I’m still not sure what we’ll end up doing.  But here is a recipe that we’ve used before, sans frosting.  I may play around with the frosting a bit and see if we can get something chocolatey to emerge.  Right now I am leaning more toward this cupcake recipe, though.

I’d like to come up with something good enough to serve to non-GAPSters at my son’s birthday party.  Yes, people, I dream big.  I’m sure it can be done – the question is, will I have the time and sanity necessary to pull off  a GAPS party??

 

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I made a new batch of lacto-fermented mustard on Saturday, and it’s been fermenting for the past several days.  Tonight I made our usual Thursday night fare – burgers with lacto-fermented mustard and pickles, and green beans with butter.  I’ve found that we go through mustard pretty quickly now that the kids are old enough to appreciate it!

I used the Nourishing Traditions recipe, altering it slightly:

  • 8 oz ground mustard (about 3 cups)
  • scant cup water (about 7/8 cup)
  • 1/4 cup whey
  • 4 tsp Real Salt
  • juice of 2 lemons (these lemons were not very juicy; I got about 1/4-1/3 cup all told)
  • 1 Tblsp honey

This makes exactly one pint and one half-pint jar of mustard.

It’s been sitting out for 6 days now and smells deeeelicious.  I put a nice dollop on our burgers and had the kids start eating while I cleaned up a bit.  Then I noticed they were eating sloooowly.  Usually they devour their burgers, so I asked what was up.  They were both drinking lots of water so it took them a minute to answer…

SPICE!!  It was really spicy.  I had forgotten that I usually let the mustard mellow in the fridge for a month or so before we eat it!  I apologized and scraped some of it off so their burgers would be edible.

Heehee.

We’ll try again in a few weeks.  :)

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Warts and all

My daughter pointed out a “blister” on the sole of her foot before we left for Boston.  We were scrambling to get ready for the trip, and I forgot to check it out.  While we were there she complained again, and I had my sister look at it since she had been plagued with plantar’s warts for years.  She said it didn’t look like a plantar’s wart to her, and I had to agree; it really just looked like a tiny blister.  I thought maybe she had a tiny splinter embedded and that her body would work it out.

A few weeks later, my daughter is still complaining.  It evidently hurts her, and since it hasn’t changed in shape or color over the past few weeks, I assume it is a wart.  I don’t want to go the razor blade route.  One of my research projects as a Master’s candidate was to evaluate the effects of an aged garlic supplement on viral warts.  My case study showed a marked improvement with garlic supplementation, so I decided we would try that approach with my daughter.

I ordered some garlic tablets at iherb.com, and then on a whim I typed “warts” in the search box.  Wellinhand Wart Wonder came up, and I decided to give it a shot in addition to the garlic.  The garlic tablets and the Wart Wonder arrived this evening so I treated the wart before my daughter went to bed.  We’ll see if any positive results appear!

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