Monthly Archives: May 2009

Texas Creams

Fresh “Texas Cream” peas from Dilorio Farms in nearby Hempstead.  Steamed, then simmered in butter, lemon, thyme, green garlic, red spring onions, rocket sprouts and some of the pan juices of a just-roasted pastured chicken.  Sea salt and freshly ground pepper..

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Sprouted Tabbouleh

Tabbouleh [tuh-boo-luh] is a traditional Levantine cold salad of bulgur, parsley, mint, tomatoes, scallions, lemon juice and olive oil.  Already more nutritious than rice or couscous, sprouting the bulgur beforehand adds additional enzymes, vitamins and minerals and makes it easier to digest.  In fact, sprouting changes the food from an acid to an alkaline base, allowing many wheat-intolerant individuals to reintroduce grains into their diet.

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Rinse untoasted, organic bulgur in cool, filtered water several times a day until 1/8 inch sprouts appear, about 3 days.

Soak bulgur in warm water for 15 minutes, then rinse and allow to dry in a strainer,

Combine bulgur with chopped fresh parsley and mint, thinly sliced scallions, chopped tomatoes, fresh lemon juice, olive oil, sea salt and black pepper.  Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.

Still Fighting: Tecolote Farm

The good folks at nearby Tecolote Farm are still struggling with their urban-sprawl-created water situation.  We ask that you contact the Travis County Commissioners Court to remind them of how important local farmers are to the community, and to pledge to support Judge Biscoe’s plan to tie the farm into the County’s water supply if other measures fall short.

Sample text

Dear Commissioner Eckhardt,

I understand that you are seeking constituents’ input at your fundraising receptions on land use. There is a particular aspect of land use that is currently very important to me. The County has recently made a positive first step toward making good on their offer to right the wrong caused to our vegetable farmer, Tecolote Farm, by the County’s heavy pumping for sports fields and leisure ponds. I commend you for voting for the County to pay for test wells if Prof. Sharp’s investigations recommend it. I am encouraged that the County is showing

If, however, the UT study does not find significant water-producing capabilities on Tecolote Farm, I strongly urge you to stand behind your reputation of environmental and sustainable land use and vote to implement Judge Biscoe’s legally-approved plan to tie Tecolote Farm into the County’s water supply.

The County has an excellent opportunity in this case to promote local, organic agriculture right now and save this farm. Land use policy can be created to handle future issues, but the County needs to fix the problem it helped create with Tecolote’s water supply. When a mistake is made, do the right thing and fix it. Save policy changes for the future; they can not retroactively fix poor planning from the past. Please don’t delay any further.

Sincerely,

Your name here
A voting constituent

Updated: Compound Tomato Sauce (lacto-fermented ketchup)

Adapted from recipes from Abby Fisher (1881) and Sally Fallon (2001), this healthy condiment keeps its Old South flavors..

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1 1/2 cups tomato paste
1/2 cup (more or less) filtered water
1/4 cup whey
2 teaspoons walnut oil
1 tablespoon molasses
1/8 cup fermented fish sauce OR 1-2 anchovies, mashed OR 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
2 cloves garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne (or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Grind dry ingredients together in a spice grinder or mash in a mortar (if using fish sauce, be sure to taste before also using sea salt).  Add to the rest of the ingredients in a non-reactive bowl and stir well to combine.

Add filtered water to achieve the consistency that you prefer.  It will thicken as it stands, so you might want to leave this a little on the thin side.

Transfer ketchup to a jar with a tight-fitting lid and allow to sit at room temperature for 72 hours before transferring to refrigerator for long-term storage.

(Here’s an earlier version of this recipe)

This post is part of Food Renegade’s  Fight Back Fridays


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Texas vs Real Milk

“Back in the 20’s, Americans could buy fresh raw whole milk, real clabber and buttermilk, luscious naturally yellow butter, fresh farm cheeses and cream in various colors and thicknesses. Today’s milk is accused of causing everything from allergies to heart disease to cancer, but when Americans could buy Real Milk, these diseases were rare. In fact, a supply of high quality dairy products was considered vital to American security and the economic well being of the nation.

What’s needed today is a return to humane, non-toxic, pasture-based dairying and small-scale traditional processing.”

Incredibly, Texas plans to further restrict access to real milk..
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photo by Dave Wild
in favor of this abomination..
Big Farms Manure vreba-hoff medina
confined, stressed animals

So, get educated and take action.  Right now.

Send your comments via email to Gene.Wright@dshs.state.tx.us or by regular mail to:

Gene Wright, Manager
Milk and Dairy Group
Texas Department of State Health Services
P.O. Box 149347 MC 1987
Austin, Texas 78714-9347

This I Believe

In the end, I, too, will succumb to the laws of nature and commend my body to the dust from which it came. Nonetheless, I will, in gratitude to its Creator, seek to feed and care for my body with chemical-free, unprocessed, and unmodified foods and herbs. Mother Nature makes perfectly unaltered, nutrient-rich foods for my consumption.

By learning about them and using them in moderation, I hope to avoid, or at least to minimize, illnesses that may be due more to my choices than to God’s design for me.

I owe this to those who love me and wish me well. I also owe this to those I have accepted the responsibility to care for.

We must educate our governments so they can be our partner in this endeavor and enact no laws that hinder our access to whole, raw, and unprocessed food and herbs, especially from small, family-owned farms, ranches and dairies. These providers are an important source of superior food that can satisfy the hunger of a nation and the desire of jobless peoples for meaningful work.

If I have been a good steward of this precious gift and later am visited by a serious illness, I may confidently know that it was beyond my power to prevent. Divine Providence, who deigns these things, will then give me the grace to accept it peacefully or expect the miracle of healing.

-Maria Atwood