Tag Archives: slow food

Spinach Quiche Recipe

Knowing how to make a quiche is big on my list of cooking skills. The recipe for quiche is a basic pie crust, filled with a savory custard of eggs, milk and cheese, and your favorite vegetables. Like pizza, quiches can have a huge variety of ingredients. This makes quiche an important go to meal item when thinking about local food because it can be made from year round staples (egg, cheese, milk, flour, and butter), and seasonal vegetables. I tend to make quiches for dinner, but they are usually served as a sunday brunch item. Quiche is usually made in a pie pan, but I made this recipe in large casserole. To lighten up a meal with quiche, I serve it with some sliced fruit, and grapes in season.

Spinach Quiche: Serves 6-8

ingredients:

For the crust:

1 3/4 cup All purpose flour
1 stick of chilled butter
1 egg
splash of water or milk

Procedure:

Cube the butter and add it to the flour in a food processor with a metal blade. Pulse a few times until the butter and flour resemble wet sand. Add the egg and a little water and pulse for a few seconds until the dough forms a ball. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate until ready to use.

Filling:

1 pint half and half
6 eggs
1 can of roasted peppers(or two large peppers roasted) drained and chopped
2 onions diced
3 cloves of garlic
2 bags of frozen spinach
1 1/2 cup of shape cheddar grated
1/2 cup grated parm
pepper
3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

Procedure

Saute the onion in a little olive oil or butter for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for another minute. Add the spinach and cook until warm.

In a bowl combine the eggs, half and half, and cheese cheddar. Mix in the onion, garlic, spinach and the roasted red pepper. Add the smoked paprika, and pepper.

preheat oven to 350 degrees

Take out your pie dough, and place on a clean flour surface. Flattened into a rough rectangle shape, and roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/4 inch. There should be enough dough to fit your casserole dish. Lay out the dough on the pan and make sure it goes up the sides. Pour the custard into the dough covered casserole. Smooth the filing to make sure the veggies are evenly dispersed. Spread he parm cheese on top in an even layer.

Place in the center rack of the oven and bake for one hour or until brown on top and bubbling.

Let cool for 15-30 before serving. Can be served at room temperature.

Slow Food Huron Valley Potluck

Ann Arbor FoodHere is my meal at the Slow Food of Huron Valley Potluck and recipe contest. Potlucks, especially those hosted by gardeners/farmers and local food cooks are my favorite. You never know what people will bring, and I always leave with a recipe or two. There were 40-50 people and there was everything from soups, stews, kraut, bread, pizza, desserts and more with a local ingredient theme.

I submitted a recipe for pumpkin ice cream. It was the first time I made this ice cream and I felt it could have been creamier and lighter. The pumpkin puree throw me, but it still came out tasty, just not what I was shooting for.

The follow are a few picture of the recipe contest winner. I forget some of the names and the winning dishes. (opps)

Winners received a huge squash and a chicken. The event was cosponsored with Tantre Farm,  Mill Pond Bread and Old Pine Farm. There was a table in the back some great local food resources, farms, and food products. (I am working a local resources listing for this blog…be out soon).

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

Dessert Winners: Banana Bread

Some more picture of the food and the event

My Pumpkin Ice Cream

My Pumpkin Ice Cream

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

Apple Heritage Museum: Amadeaus Scott

Ann Arbor Food

The Apple Heritage Museum is a traveling collection of the history of the apple and its uses in Washtenaw County. Exhibits include apple coring, peeling, and cider making equipment, maps and inventory of local apple trees, and a recipe collection.

The museum is run by Amadeaus Scott and has exhibited at the Ann Arbor Farmers Market.

At todays exhibit, Amadeaus had apple pie. In talking to her about the project, she hopes to eventual have a space for the museum. I for one would visit a museum that offered free apple pie samples to visitors. In fact what museum would not benefit from offering pie.

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

Ann Arbor Food

A Moveable Feast

Viertel_Sept_16_truck_farm_post

This picture is from a post from The Atlantic. It is of a couple from Brooklyn, NY who converted the back of their truck into a movable garden.

Read Full Story

This story hits home for me after my trek up to Lansing. I almost got killed by an aggressive, large pick up truck driving maniac on route to check out the Food Ways exhibit. Me in my Prius and him in his, I am not sure the make, huge pick up truck. I could not help noticed that the bed of his four door, low gas milage, vehicle was empty.

In fact most pick up truck I see have empty beds, and are probably not really used to carry anything more then the person driving it. I say if they are only driving a truck to puff up their peacock feathers in a fashion display to impress the opposite sex, then why not at least get some good use out of it and plant a garden in back.

Canada Grocery Stores Goes Local

BuyLocal.inddA Canada grocery store breaks from its parent large chain namesake to support local food. Bound to purchase food dictated by the Sobey’s Chain, the owner could not provide locally sourced food despite growing consumer demand. On July 3, 2009, owner Dale Kropf broke from the Sobey’s chain in order to have more flexibility to provide locally sourced food.

Read the full article

From the article:
____________
Canadians are increasingly subscribing to the “buy local” and “100 mile diet” philosophies due to concerns over imported food, Kropf adds. “The pressure was always mounting — the more recalls, the more bad press from China or wherever the product was coming from. I know that in our case, our private label pickles are made in Indonesia. I couldn’t believe that.”
____________

Like the McDonald article I posted, this story speaks to a local food victory. What is different in this case is that customers demand helped create the change. In both cases, corporate policy forced owners of have to break from the franchise.

What both these stories says to me is that the local trend is not going away and food distributor are starting to take notice. And we the consumers have the ability to create change with our wallet, which will not be ignored.

The more that local food is demanded and purchased, the more grocery stores, and restaurants will provide it. And the increased demand will create an increase in local farms and food producers of all kinds.

So how can we promote change?

The quick answer in my opinion is to push your grocer to provide More Local Foods.

Why the grocer store and not the farmer’s market, a CSA, or home gardening? All these things are great and are growing and need to be supported. At the same time the main source for food distribution is still the super market, and that is where change needs to come from too.

Simply ask the manager in various departments at the grocery store:

“What local products do you offer?”

If they do not know, or they do not have any, tell them that you are committed towards buying more locally sourced food and would like them to supply it.

Also ask what local food is coming. For example, I produce manager will know about a batch of local green beans coming in, or apples, or peaches etc…

If we show a demand for local produce, and create a run on say local peaches, the produce managers will take notice and most likely order more locally sourced items. If say the locally sourced food is selling better than the imported stuff, there will be an incentive for them to get more. Of course, only if their cooperate policy allows.

I am starting to see “Local” and “Michigan” labels on food items at grocery stores like Arbor Farms, Plum and even Whole Foods. They may be more demand for local than there is suppliers which is a good thing because this pushes the market to adapt.

$2.50:Turkey and Barley Stew

Ann Arbor FoodMy usual go to grain is short grain brown rice. This is a leftover from my days when I ate a macrobiotic diet. Now that I am eating more locally, I am thinking about other grains. Barley is a grain that is grown here in Michigan, along with oats, corn and wheat. I have yet to find whole grain corn available for making pasole, but I figure it is out there.

Here is a hearty stew made from whole barley. Most barley recipes call for pearled barley which is a more refine product like brown compared to white rice. The upshot is that whole barley comes out chewy and takes much longer to cook, about an hour or more, but it has more nutrition.

I provided a vegan option for this meal. If going vegan, the addition of dried mushroom which including the mushroom tea and perhaps some miso could be use to boast flavor. The addition of chopped nuts or seeds can also be added as a garnish for a hearty vegan option.

I forgot to garb an itemized receipt so there is not a 100% official local food cost breakdown for this meal, but I am sure it fits into a $3-5 range per person.

Turkey and Barley Stew

Makes 8-10 servings

Ingredients:

1 pound of whole barley, (Hampshire Farms) $1.50

1 pound of ground turkey (can substitute you favor ground meat or sausage), Plum Market $7.00 (Meat is optional, this meal can be vegan)

3 medium size leeks, cleaned and dice, with some green parts (AA Coop) $??$3.00

2 cup of sliced mushrooms (AA Coop) $??$2.50

2 cup of medium diced carrots(Garden works) $1.00

1 quart jar of canned tomatoes with liquid (Home Garden) $1.00

1 cup of frozen peas (not local) $1.00 ???

1/4 cup of organic soy sauce (No Local) $?? 1.50

3 bay leafs

3-4 tablespoons butter (AA Coop) $.50 (Substitute olive or vegetable oil for a vegan option)

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

salt and pepper to taste

Estimated Cost:

Eight servings $2.38

Ten servings $1.90

Vegan Option: $2.50-$1.20 (depending on how fancy you get with the dried mushrooms, nuts and other additions)

Procedure:

In a large heavy bottomed, brown the turkey with the butter. Remove the turkey and add the leeks and mushrooms with a little salt. Stir and cooked them down for around ten minutes. If they start to stick, add a little water. Add the carrots, some bay leaf, the can of tomatoes, the soy sauce, the barley, and turkey. Add about 2-6 cups of water, enough to cover. Barley absorbs a ton of water, so you might need to add more depending if you want this to be more of a soup than a grain dish. Stock can me use to substitute some of the water. Stir in the smoked paprika and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for about an hour, or until the barley is cooked. Thaw the peas in put into the stew during the last ten minutes.

Garnish with parsley or scallion.

Pumpkin Buttermilk Ice Cream

This is my submission to the Slow Food Huron Valley Cook Off.

Most ingredients are local. The except is the pumpkin spices and the bourbon. Now that I am studying local food, I find it interesting that the taste of fall, specifically the spices come from so far away. Spices are hard to come by on a 100 mile diet, and substitutions for tropical flavors are harder still. If you want to go completely local, you can omit the spices. I used white sugar because it was local, but feel free to use brown sugar or a combination of both white and brown sugar. For a lighter texture ice cream, use milk instead of buttermilk.

The end product is a like frozen pumpkin pie.

Pumpkin Buttermilk Ice Cream

Ingredients:

2 cups of heavy cream (Calder Dairy)

2 cups of buttermilk (Calder Dairy)

1-1/2 cups of pumpkin puree from a roasted pie pumpkin or can (AA FM)

6 egg yolks (Farmers Market)

1 cup of sugar (Michigan Big Chief)

1/2 cup of Maple syrup (Michigan Maple Sugar)

2 teaspoons of pumpkin spice (mixture of powdered cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and clove)  (Not Local)

pinch of salt

1 ounce of bourbon (optional)

Procedure:

If using a fresh pie pumpkin, cut the pumpkin with a heavy knife into 2-3 inch squares. Spread onto a glass casserole pan skin side up. You might need a few pans depending on the size of the pumpkin. Bake at 375 degrees for an hour or more until the pumpkin is fully cooked and is somewhat dry. Scoop out the flesh and process through a food mill. If you do not have a food mill, use a metal strainer and push the pumpkin through with a wooded spoon. You should have 1-1 1/2 cups of pumpkin puree.

In a double boiler, heat but do not boil the buttermilk and the cream, and 3/4 cups of sugar. In a bowl whisk the egg yolks until they increase in volume and turn lighter in color. Combine the rest of the sugar, maple syrup, bourbon, pumpkin spice and salt to the egg yolks.

Now the tricky part, tempering the eggs. With whisk in one hand and a ladle in the other, ladle some of the hot cream mixture into the egg mixture while constantly whisking. Add more of the hot mixture until the cream and the eggs mixture combined and brought up to a warmer temperature. If you see some cooked egg in your egg mixture, it means you the tempering was a little off. Don’t worry. It means you cooked a little bit of your egg. Simply stain the egg mix before adding it to your hot cream. Combine the tempered egg mixture to the cream mixture on the stove and bring up to 170-180, but no higher. Stir in the pumpkin puree.

Freeze or refrigerate the mixture until it is cool, but not frozen. Add the mixture to you ice cream machine and process based on the manufactures instructions. Freeze ovenight, or until the ice cream firms up.

Makes 1-1 1/2 quarts.