Saturday, January 7, 2012

Food Catch of the Day

Red(sweet)Beats, Leeks, Red Radish, Bok Choy
 Take a look see everyone!  This is my catch of the day and nourishment for the weekend.  What you see are a combination of "root" vegetables with a great pigmentation (color).  I love color in my food, it makes everything seem alive.  So what do we have here?  Well, I've got some lovely Red Beets (sweet), some lovely Leeks (my favorite), Red Radishes, and though it may not look like it, Green Bok Choy.  Now, I haven't quite decided how I'm going to prepare them yet, but rest assured that my leeks will be used to create a vegetable stock.  I may add the bok choy as well along with some seasoning herbs(bay leaf) and spices (black pepper, cumin, curry, sea salt).  The radishes are going to be used to make this wonderful tasting Mango-Jicama Salad (Pic's to follow), and the red (sweet) beets I may just slice and put into a jar with some cucumbers, a hot pepper, and apple cider vinegar or add them to a salad (still undecided??).    
"Bolting" or "Flowering" Bok Choy

So, I wanted to share a bit about harvesting fresh veggies from your garden or getting them fresh from your local Farmer's Market.  I was fortunate enough to get a combination of both.  My friend Dr. Shani over at Message Media Ed., Inc. provided the Bok Choy, from a friends garden, that you see pictured to the right (thanks Dr. Shani :-).  Now, these have begun to "bolt" or "flower," and this happens when you don't harvest them in a timely manner (or if the climate is too warm Bok Choy sometime will flower before the leaves develop fully).  Bok choy unlike other greens such as collards or kale, will not turn bitter at this early stage of flowering, so you can still eat them and enjoy the taste. If you are growing bok choy or any green veggie, you can start to harvest as soon as you have leaves growing.  Just snip off a few leaves at the base and toss them into a salad or stir fry. This allows the plant to continue to grow fresh new leaves and get stronger providing even more nutrients.  Some new to gardening think that they have to wait until the food looks like it does at the store before they touch them.  That's some of the "mental conditioning" that I speak about in my presentations.  When growing your own food or getting it fresh from the farmer's market you cut out the middle man and all of that dressing up that is done to get you to buy the food out of the store is no longer necessary, so you will see a little dirt (aka soil) as well as the flowers and roots of your food.  Those flowers and roots hold nutrients, so use them and don't throw them away (in most case).  
See the roots on those Beets and Leeks

Fresh from the garden
I will be eating the flowers and all because they are nutrient dense (having a lot of nutrients).  If you are growing greens for the first time or you are a "lazy" gardener (not offensive - it's an actual classification in the gardening community), remember that plants grow as an offering to us and we show our appreciation by harvesting and at least tasting them.  If you can't eat them yourself, harvest them and offer them to a friend (like Dr. Shani did :-)  Oh, notice that the Sweet Beets don't have their green leaves attached to the stems.  That's because I cut them off and made this really awesome vegetable stock with some leeks (of course), black beans, forbidden rice, nopales (prickly pear cactus), and portabella mushrooms seasoned with bay leaf, cumin, curry, sea salt and Trader Joe's 21-Seasoning Salute spices -YUM! ( I ate it before I could take pictures, so I'll do a repeat as those greens were so, so tender and sweet.)  OK, enough!  Now go grow something to eat (or buy it  fresh at the Farmer's Market), enjoy the preparation process and Be well till next time.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

My First Blog Post Ever!

Greetings All:

Welcome to my blog space.  This is where you and I will connect and share our thoughts, ideas and information on the subject of food, it's nutritional value and their benefits.  Thank you for joining me here and I look forward to our wellness journey, Be well,