Thursday, December 22, 2016

Cold Frames for Winter Harvest

It is December and finally I am writing this post - but that is OK because now feels like the right time to share this info with you. 

For the first time I am using cold frames in my garden! In the beginning of September I fit three frames inside existing raised beds. Since the bottom is open the cold frame is sitting on top of already prepared soil. They were angled facing south to get as much sun as possible. Pictured here are two and there is a smaller one against the wall of my house. Read more . . .

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Moroccan Preserved Lemons

Moroccan Preserved Lemons
Preserved lemons are a traditional North African condiment where the sour and salty flavour adds a distinct taste to everyday cooking - here I am using it Raw Style.

Preserved lemons are rich in lactic-acid producing bacteria, and delicious giving a light, clean flavour to foods, sauces, and they make an excellent condiment. Both the flesh and rind of the lemon become edible once they have been fermented.

2-1/2 pounds lemons, (preferably Meyer lemons)
1/4 cup unrefined sea salt

·       Trim the ends off lemons, taking care not to cut into the flesh and then slice the lemons as if to quarter them - keeping the base of the lemon intact.
·       Sprinkle the interior of the lemons with unrefined sea salt then layer in your Mason jar, crock or fermentation device. Sprinkle with unrefined sea salt then mash with a wooden spoon or dowel until the rinds of the lemon begin to soften and the lemons release their juice which should combine with the salt to create a brine conducive to the proliferation of beneficial bacteria.
·       Continue mashing, salting and mashing until your lemons fill the jar and rest below the level of the brine
·       Ferment at room temperature for three to four weeks, and transfer jar to the refrigerator
·       Lemons can be kept for one to two years

Moroccan Chickpea Casserole - Raw & Vegan

The smell and texture of this slightly sweet yet savory dish is sure to satisfy. Serve it in a bowl like stew, or pour it over veggie rice and present it on a platter. You will need to start preparing a few days ahead to allow for soaking of chickpeas.

1/2 cup dried chickpeas, soaked (in 2 cups water, set aside in the fridge for 3-4 days, changing soak water daily)
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, soaked (in 1 cup water for 30 minutes)
3 cups tomatoes, chopped
2 Tbsp red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup Preserved Lemons (optional)
1/2 Tbsp Miso
2 Tbsp raw agave
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 Tbsp cumin, ground
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp turmeric, ground
Pinch Himalayan Sea Salt
Pinch black pepper, freshly ground
Pinch cayenne pepper
1 cup sweet potato noodles (in spiral veggie slicer using the smallest blade)
1 cup cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
1/2 cup carrot, finely diced
1/2 cup red bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 tsp pure psyllium husk (to thicken)

·         In a food processor, process tomatoes, onion, garlic, Preserved Lemons, soaked sun-dried tomatoes with 1/4 cup of soaking liquid, until smooth
·         To food processor add Miso, agave, lemon juice, cumin, cinnamon, turmeric, salt, pepper and cayenne – process until mixed through
·         Transfer to a bowl – add sweet potato noodles, cilantro, carrot, bell pepper, soaked chickpeas, psyllium husk, and stir well
·         Transfer mixture from the bowl into an 8” square casserole dish
·         Remove bottom two shelves from dehydrator placing dish on bottom  
·         Dehydrate at 105ºF for 2 hours or more and do a taste test - It is ready when the mixture is warmed all the way through and the flavours have blended