Friday, October 17, 2014

Slow Cooker Apple Pie Filling Recipe

It's apple harvest season in New England. Around here, we can never get enough sweet, juicy, crisp apples.These days, you can buy apples year round, but they're never quite as good as harvest-fresh local apples.

It's not just about the great taste, though. We're pretty committed to cutting back on the number of miles our groceries travel before they reach us, and that means buying local produce as much as possible. Because of that commitment, we try really, really hard to avoid buying fresh fruit out of season - so bye-bye January apples and hello preserving as much of that fresh apple goodness as possible.

This recipe may be one of the easiest -and most delicious - apple pie filling recipes ever. The slow cooking preserves the apple flavor and structure so you get the most firm, sweet, apple-y apples ever.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Vegan Lemon Ginger Honey Spread

 A couple of weeks back, I attended a full-day conference on alternative economies. The invitation included a request for pot luck food if any were so moved - and I was so moved. I decided to bring something everyone could enjoy, and since I had a rather large zucchini sitting in the fridge, I thought a nice vegan zucchini bread would fit the bill nicely.

Not being vegan myself, I like my zucchini bread with a schmear of cream cheese and honey, but it seemed only fair to bring a vegan spread to go with the vegan bread. I figured someone out there must have a recipe for something like a tofu substitute for cream cheese. I mean, there's a tofu substitute for just about everything else, right? Apparently not. So, I was on my own with a package of firm, silken tofu and the contents of my panty. I crossed my fingers and started improvising... and came up with this light, sweet and slightly nutty spread.

Flour Sacks - A Retro Alternative for a Sustainable Modern Life

Flour Sacks - Better than Paper Towels

Earlier this morning, I was writing up the recipe for Spinach Portobello Quiche I made for dinner last night and threw in a short homage to flour cloth towels. The more I thought about it, the more I realized how much I use these handy-dandy little items. Yes, they're ideal for rolling out pie crusts and pasta dough, but they also do so much more. They're readily available, reusable, multipurpose and very, very affordable. What's not to love? Here are just a few of the ways I use flour cloths around the house every single day.

Spinach Portobello Quiche

Spinach is one of my favorite crops. It's easy to grow and grows fast enough that I can get in several harvests between spring and the end of the growing season. Tonight, I had a bunch of leafy greens in the fridge that were in danger of going slimy. I also had some lovely portobello mushrooms that were calling me to cook them. Finally, I have a son who thinks spinach is slimy, mushrooms are even slimier and quiche is meh. Sounds like a challenge, right?

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Creamy Curried Carrot Ginger Soup

What do you do with a bumper crop of fresh, sweet carrots? I ran across a recipe for curried carrot soup and decided to play with it and make it my own. It came out so good that my carrot-indifferent son had second helpings. It takes a little time to make, but it's so totally worth it.