Monthly Archives: June 2010

Broiled Striped Cavern Tomatoes with Ricotta Salata and White Balsamic Vinaigrette

Striped cavern tomatoes are briefly broiled, then drizzled with a white balsamic vinaigrette and topped with ricotta salata, fresh basil and fennel pollen.  Garlic butter-fried croûtons on the side..

Broiled Striped Cavern Tomatoes with Ricotta Salata and White Balsamic Vinaigrette

2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
3-4 oz tablespoons best quality olive oil
1/2 teaspoon fennel pollen
1 teaspoon fresh green basil
1/2 teaspoon fresh purple basil
1/2 teaspoon fresh oregano
pinch of sea salt & a twist of freshly-ground black pepper
1 scallion, slivered

1 clove garlic, smashed
1 tablespoon pastured butter
1 thick slice bread, crusted and cubed

2 fresh striped cavern tomatoes
fresh basil leaves for garnish

2 oz ricotta salata (a pressed, salted and dried variety of sheep’s milk cheese), cut or torn into small pieces

Core and split the tomatoes across the equator.  Place in a heat-proof pan and broil until they turn brilliant red, about 2 minutes.  Set aside to cool.

Combine the vinegar, fennel pollen, salt and pepper together in a bowl.  Whisk in the olive in a slow, steady stream until completely incorporated.  Stir in scallions, basil and oregano and refrigerate 20 minutes.

Melt the butter in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook 2 minutes.  Add the bread cubes and cook until golden brown on all sides. Remove to a dish to drain.

To assemble, arrange two tomato halves on a chilled salad plate.  Scatter ricotta and croûtons around the tomatoes and drizzle liberally with vinaigrette.  Garnish with basil leaves and serve immediately.

(Vegan) Curried Carrot Soup with Roasted Cashews and Coconut Cream

Heirloom carrots are simmered in vegetable stock with yellow onions, green chiles, ginger and garlic and seasoned with toasted coriander and cumin.  Served with turmeric-scented basmati, roasted cashews and fresh cilantro.

Curried Carrot Soup with Roasted Cashews and Coconut Cream

 

For the Soup

1 bunch fresh carrots, trimmed, scrubbed and coarsely chopped
2 small yellow onions, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1-1/2 teaspoons freshly-grated ginger
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 tablespoons coriander seed
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 tablespoon paprika
1 small sprig fresh curry leaves
1-2 fresh green chiles, chopped
1 tablespoon virgin coconut oil
1-1/2 cups vegetable stock
1/2 cup coconut milk
sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper

rice
cashews
cilantro
coconut cream

Roast carrots in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.  Add onions, garlic, coriander and cumin seeds and roast 15 minutes more.

Melt coconut oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat.  When shimmering add curry leaf, fenugreek, mustard, chiles and coriander seeds.  Cook until the mustard seeds begin to pop and the curry leaves are crisp.  Stir in paprika and ginger and cook 1 minute.

Add roasted vegetables and stock and simmer 15 minutes.  Working in batches if necessary, carefully puree soup in a blender until smooth.  Strain into a clean pot and simmer 10 minutes.  Whisk in coconut milk and simmer 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve, place a mound of turmeric-scented basmati in a bowl and ladle soup all around.  Spoon a little coconut cream over the rice and swirl into the soup.  Garnish with toasted cashews, minced chiles and chopped cilantro.

A Recipe For Chronic Disease

The just-released Proposed Dietary Guidelines for Americans seems to have as much to do with subsidized corporate profits as it does human health. Indeed, the Standard American Diet (SAD for short) IS the very source of our health care crisis. –Ren


PRESS RELEASE

PROPOSED 2010 USDA DIETARY GUIDELINES –A RECIPE FOR CHRONIC DISEASE
Weston A. Price Foundation Proposes a Return to Four Basic Groups of Nutrient-Dense Foods

WASHINGTON, DC, June 21, 2010: The proposed 2010 USDA Dietary Guidelines are a recipe for infertility, learning problems in children and increased chronic disease in all age groups according to Sally Fallon Morell, president of the Weston A. Price Foundation.

“The proposed 2010 Dietary Guidelines perpetuate the mistakes of previous guidelines in demonizing saturated fats and animal foods rich in saturated fatty acids such as egg yolks, butter, whole milk, cheese, fatty meats like bacon and animal fats for cooking. The current obesity epidemic emerged as vegetable oils and refined carbohydrates replaced these healthy, nutrient-dense traditional fats. Animal fats supply many essential nutrients that are difficult to obtain from other sources,” explains Fallon Morell.

“The revised Guidelines recommend even more stringent reductions in animal fats and cholesterol than previous versions,” says Fallon Morell, “and are tantamount to rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. While the ship of state sinks under the weight of a crippling health care burden, the Committee members are giving us more of the same disastrous advice.  These are unscientific and grossly deficient dietary recommendations.”

The Weston A. Price Foundation is a non-profit nutrition education foundation with no ties to the government or food processing industries.  Named for Dr. Weston A. Price, whose  pioneering research discovered the vital importance of animal fats in human diets, the Foundation has warned against the dangers of lowfat and plant-based diets.

“Basic biochemistry shows that the human body has a very high requirement for saturated fats in all cell membranes; if we do not eat saturated fats, the body will simply make them from carbohydrates, but excess carbohydrate increases blood levels of triglyceride and small, dense LDL, and compromises blood vessel function,” says Fallon Morell.  “Moreover, high-carbohydrate diets do not satisfy the appetite as well as diets rich in traditional fats, leading to higher caloric intakes and often to bingeing and splurging on empty foods, resulting in rapid weight gain and chronic disease.”

The proposed guidelines will perpetuate existing nutrient deficiencies present in all American population groups, including deficiencies in vitamins A and D found in animal fats, vitamins B12 and B6 found in animal foods, as well as minerals like calcium and phosphorus, which require vitamins A and D for assimilation. Moreover, low intakes of vitamin K2, are associated with increased risk of heart disease and cancer. The main sources of vitamin K2 available to Americans are egg yolks and full-fat cheese. Incredibly, the Guidelines single out cheese as an unhealthy food!

Fallon Morell notes that by restricting healthy animal fats in school lunches and diets for pregnant women and growing children, the Guidelines will accelerate the tragic epidemic of learning and behavior disorders.  The nutrients found most abundantly in animal fats and organ meats-including choline, cholesterol and arachidonic acid-are critical for the development of the brain and the function of receptors that modulate thinking and behavior.  Studies show that choline helps the brain make critical connections and protects against neurotoxins; animal studies suggest that if choline is abundant during developmental years, the individual is protected for life from developmental decline. The National Academy of Sciences recommends 375 mg per day for children nine through thirteen years of age, 450 mg for pregnant women and 550 mg for lactating women and men aged fourteen and older. These amounts are provided by four or five egg yolks per day-but that would entail consuming 800-1000 mg cholesterol, a crime by USDA standards. In their deliberations, the committee referred to this as the “choline problem.” Pregnant women and growing children especially need to eat as many egg yolks as possible-yet the Guidelines demonize this nutrient-dense food.

The Guidelines lump trans fats together with saturated fats-calling them Solid Fats-thereby hiding the difference between unhealthy industrial trans fats and healthy traditional saturated fats.  Trans fats contribute to inflammation, depress the immune system, interfere with hormone production, and set up pathological conditions leading to cancer and heart disease, whereas saturated fats fight inflammation, support the immune system, support hormone production and protect against cancer and heart disease.

The vitamins and fatty acids carried uniquely in saturated animal fats are critical to reproduction.  The Weston A. Price Foundation warns that the 2010 Guidelines will increase infertility in this country, already at tragically high rates.

“The 2010 proposed Guidelines represent a national scandal, the triumph of industry clout over good science and common sense,” says Fallon Morell. “It must be emphasized that the Guidelines are not based on science but are designed to promote the products of commodity agriculture and-through the back door-encourage the consumption of processed foods. For while the USDA food police pay lip service to reducing our intake of refined sweeteners, trans fats, white flour and salt, this puritanical low-fat prescription ultimately leads to cravings for chips, sweets, sodas, breads, desserts and other empty food-and-beverage-like products just loaded with refined sweeteners, trans fats, white flour and salt.”

The Weston A. Price Foundation proposes alternative Healthy 4 Life Dietary Guidelines, which harkens back to the traditional four basic food groups, but with a renewed emphasis on quality through a return to pasture-based feeding and organic, pesticide-free production methods:

Every day, eat high quality, whole foods to provide an abundance of nutrients, chosen from each of the following four groups:

ANIMAL FOODS: meat and organ meats, poultry, and eggs from pastured animals; fish and shellfish; whole raw cheese, milk and other dairy products from pastured animals; and broth made from animal bones.

GRAINS, LEGUMES AND NUTS: whole-grain baked goods, breakfast porridges, whole grain rice; beans and lentils; peanuts, cashews and nuts, properly prepared to improve digestibility.

FRUITS AND VEGETABLES: preferably fresh or frozen, preferably locally grown, either raw, cooked or in soups and stews, and also as lacto-fermented condiments.

FATS AND OILS: unrefined saturated and monounsaturated fats including butter, lard, tallow and other animal fats; palm oil and coconut oil; olive oil; cod liver oil for vitamins A and D.

AVOID: foods containing refined sweeteners such as candies, sodas, cookies, cakes, etc.; white flour products such as pasta and white bread; processed foods; modern soy foods; polyunsaturated and partially hydrogenated vegetable oils and fried foods.

* * * * * * * * *

The Weston A. Price Foundation is a 501C3 nutrition education foundation with the mission of disseminating accurate, science-based information on diet and health. Named after nutrition pioneer Weston A. Price, DDS, author of Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, the Washington, DC-based Foundation publishes a quarterly journal for its 13,000 members, supports 450 local chapters worldwide and hosts a yearly International conference. The Foundation headquarters phone number is (202) 363-4394, http://www.westonaprice.org, info@westonaprice.org.

CONTACT: Kimberly Hartke, Publicist
Home office 703-860-2711 cell 703-675-5557
press@westonaprice.org

PMB #106-380
4200 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Washington, District of Columbia 20016
United States

ACTIONS TO TAKE
1. Please take time during this week to post a comment at the USDA website. Go to www.dietaryguidelines.gov and scroll down to “SUBMIT Written Comments.”  It is particularly important to describe any adverse health effects you or family members have suffered by following earlier versions of the Guidelines.

2. Please also EMAIL your comments to your Senators and Representative in Congress.  Let them know that USDA’s formulation of dietary guidelines is a complete waste of taxpayer money and has resulted in a health crisis of epidemic proportions, especially in our children. It would be good also to PHONE your elected officials as well. For congressional contact information, go to www.house.gov and www.senate.gov.

3. If you live near Washington, DC, consider attending the public hearings at USDA on July 8.  You can sign up to give an oral  presentation  or simply attend to show support.  To sign up for attending the meeting, go to www.dietaryguidelines.gov and scroll down to “Meeting Registration/Oral Testimony.”

4. Please send out the Press Release above to your local newspaper and radio shows.  You may add your own contact information to that of  publicist Kimberly Hartke.  In addition, you may add a paragraph to the press release about how the USDA dietary guidelines adversely affected your own health and that of your family.

5.Please broadcast this action alert to other groups.

Grilled Lamb Sausages with Madras Curry Paste and Sprouted Wheat Naan

Local, pastured lamb is ground with garlic, cumin, sea salt and black pepper, stuffed in a casing and refrigerated overnight before being grilled with yellow onions and green chiles.  Dressed with Madras curry paste with nigella and fresh cilantro, then rolled in sprouted  wheat naan..

Grilled Lamb Sausages with Madras Curry Paste

For the Sausage

1 pound freshly ground lamb shoulder, about 75% lean, cubed
2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
about 5 feet lamb casing

Combine lamb, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper together in a bowl. Wrap tightly and refrigerate overnight.  Thoroughly wash and drain casing, then place it onto the sausage maker attachment of a stand mixer.  Grind the meat mixture into the casing, twisting individual sausages off at about 4 inches.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

For the Curry Paste

1/4 cup coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon nigella
1 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground mustard seeds
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons ghee
1 tablespoon freshly-grated ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon vinegar
1/4 heavy coconut milk
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, torn

Toast the coriander in a dry skillet, allow to cool, then combine with mustard and chili powder.

Heat ghee in a heavy skillet over medium heat, then fry spice mixture until the butter oil separates, about 5 minutes.  Add vinegar, ginger and garlic and cook 2 minutes.

Add coconut milk and nigella and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes.  Stir in cilantro and remove from heat.

For the Naan

2 cups sprouted wheat flour
1/2 cup organic all-purpose flour
1/4 cup fresh whole milk
3/4 cup plain, whole milk yogurt
1 package yeast
1 teaspoon non-refined sugar
1/4 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 tablespoons ghee, melted

Warm the milk in a saucepan, then pour into a bowl and stir in the yeast.  Allow to stand until frothy, about 10 minutes.

Sift flours, sugar, baking powder and salt into a bowl and form a well in the center.  Slowly add ghee, yogurt and milk and knead until soft and pliable, about 10 minutes. Cover the dough and allow to stand in a warm place until doubled in size, about 2 hours.

Divide the dough into lemon-sized balls, then roll and stretch into the shape of a 1/4 inch-thick teardrop.  Place naan on a large, flat griddle and bake in a 475 degree oven until puffy and slightly crisp, about 2-3 minutes on the 1st side and 1-2 minutes on the 2nd side.

To Assemble

Grill or pan fry sausages until crisp and brown and  the juices run clear, about 15 minutes depending on heat source.  Cook onions and chiles in similar fashion.

Place a sausage into the middle of a small naan and top with curry paste, onions and vegetables. Roll and eat hot dog-style.

(Re)introducing the SFC Farmers’ Market at Sunset Valley

Many of the 55+ certified growers-only farmers, food vendors and artisans at “the market that stayed in Sunset Valley” have been serving the South Austin community for several years now.  Having lived in the area and visited the market many times, I can assure you that from Animal Farm to Zubik House and everything in between, these amazing producers are dedicated to bringing you the best in local, sustainable products.

A project of the non-profit Sustainable Food Center, the Farmers’ Market at Sunset Valley also offers an ATM (tokens) and accepts the Lone Star Food Stamp card (tokens).  Did I mention 17 acres of free parking?

The Sunset Valley market is open Saturdays from 9am to 1pm, rain or shine – please stop by & say hi, grab some incredible food and help support this vibrant, growing community.


3200 Jones Road, at the Toney Burger Center off Hwy. 290/71 eastbound access road,
just west of the intersection of Brodie Lane and Hwy. 290/71 East
the same location as always!

Chorizo Hash with a Fried Goose Egg

Freshly made Mexican chorizo is pan-fried with yellow onions, sweet peppers, chiles, fresh corn and toasted cilantro and topped with a giant fried goose egg..

Chorizo Hash with a Fried Goose Egg

For the Chorizo

1/2 pound fresh pork, about 80% lean, coarsely ground
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
2 whole cloves, ground
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
a pinch or two fine sea salt

Loosely combine all ingredients together in a non-reactive bowl.  Cover and refrigerate 4-6 hours or overnight.

For the Hash (serves 2)

1/2 pound chorizo
1 teaspoon bacon fat
2 ears-worth fresh corn kernels
1/2 small yellow onion, thinly sliced
1-2 fresh jalapeños, diced
3-4 small orange or red sweet peppers, diced
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seed
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
freshly-ground black pepper

1 local goose egg per person

Heat bacon fat in a heavy skillet over medium heat.  Add chorizo and cook until it begins to brown and crisp, then add corn, chiles, sweet peppers and cumin and cook until vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes.  Season to taste with black pepper and a pinch of salt if you think it needs it, then top with a fried egg.

Goose Egg vs. Chicken Egg

One goose egg provides about 20g protein, and is also a very good source of vitamins A, B6 and B12 as well as thiamin, riboflavin and folate.  Cook as you would chicken or duck eggs, simply allowing more time due to its large size.