Entries from March 2009 ↓

Chicken Soup a Jewish Grandmother would love

My good friend, Devorah, has been cooking ALOT. This was not always the case. She and I used to go out to eat very often and enjoyed discovering the new. But, after a couple of hospital stints, she has become serious about food and digestion. And in the process, she has become a phenomenal cook and baker! I use to be the one with the recipes, but now I call HER.

A Jewish Grandmother in her bookclub came down with the flu. It’s very disconcerting to see a grandma ill. So what did Devorah do? She made a pot of chicken soup, delivered it to her bookclub friend and neighbor and wished her good health. No sooner was she back home than she received a call of gratitude – Grandma said she has been making the best chicken soup of anyone’s for over 60 years, but Devorah just outdid her. Can she please have the recipe? She gave it gladly. Here it is from The Whole Life NutritionCookbook by Alissa Segersten and Tom Malterre:

To make the chicken broth:

  • 1 whole organic chicken, about 4 pounds
  • 1 large onion, cut onto 1/4’s with skin on
  • 1 head garlic
  • 3 stalks celery, cut into large pieces
  • 1 large carrot, cut into large pieces
  • 2 bay leaves
  • one 4-inch strip kombu
  • 2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
  • 1/2 bunch parsley, chopped
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 3 sprigs fresh marjoram
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 sprig fresh savory
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt or Herbamare
  • water to cover, about 10 to 12 cups

1. Rinse the chicken and place into a large 8-qt stockpot. Add the remaining ingredients for the broth into the stockpot. Place pot over medium heat and bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cover with a lid. Simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until chicken easily falls off the bone.

2. Next place a large strainer over a clean large pot; pour contents of the broth through the strainer to separate the broth from the vegetable and chicken. Remove the chicken and place on a plate to cool. Discard vegetables and herbs.

There is more to the recipe to make ‘soup’, but I like broth. I will add leftovers from the fridge and get a different combo every time. I like it best made with yellow miso, green onions, brown rice and peas. This is where you get to personalize your soup. Be healthy!

Clouds in the Sky

There was a giant cloud above Bellingham today and it had a hole in the middle of it. It looked like a big puffy donut! The power of suggestion from veganinbellingham.com and Mighty- O Donuts.

You see, my partner has been out of town for a week and I’m getting a bit frazzled with the brood. So like any normal human being, I’ve been eating treats. A donut is a treat. They look beautiful and I will have very willing companions in the car for the drive down to Seattle Saturday. Heck, I didn’t even have my shoes on before the kids were out the door for Katie’s Cupcakes yesterday. But that’s a different post…

Katie’s Cupcakes

My daughter calls it the dancing cupcake store. My sons want to go there everyday now and participate in the Dirty Dan Days cupcake eating contest (who wouldn’t?).

Katie’s Cupcakes is open for business in Fairhaven. It is adjacent to Rebecca’s Flowershop with a shared interior doorway. This is why it smells like eden = floral green smells and sweet bakery smells. The space is high and bright and pastel. There is a children’s nook with games and books. And there is a glass case filled with fresh little delights. The little delights are cupcakes. The cake tastes like a cloud and the icing like its puff; so light and delicately sweet. Basically, a two thumbs up from all four of us.

Katie, her husband and daughter are very friendly. The girls working the counter were, too. Katie’s daughter even played a game with my kids for a little while (she was coaching them in the how-to department). I ate a pina colada cupcake with a little paper umbrella (coconut pineapple cake with light fluffy vanilla frosting and shredded coconut), the kids: cookies and cream (chocolate cake with cookies and cream frosting and oreo on top), black and white (rich chocolate cake with vanilla butter cream frosting) and red velvet (light chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting). Katie can make 17 different varieties of cupcakes. She has 5 regulars and then rotates the rest throughout the week. She does special orders (I just missed by one day the gluten free cupcakes leftover from a special order) and I’m hoping she’ll whip up a recipe that is vegan. They’re working on it.

They serve Spice Hut teas which are the BEST in Bellingham and locally brewed Agri-Bay coffee. Katie quits baking at about 4:30, so shake a leg if you want your favorite!

Coconut Bliss

My younger son and I were shopping at the Community Food Co-op Cordata store this morning. We were taking advantage of the sales before the month’s end. Plus we were having good luck with the new coupon book – there were many coupons for items we regularly purchase. As he pushed the cart down the last aisle, his eyes lit on the desserts. He brought me a container with something chocolate in it. How did he know I would love to share it with him? On 1 condition: haircut after shopping. “Sure”, he said!

Coconut Bliss: coconut, coconut milk, chocolate, brown sugar. The baker magically combined four ingredients and created this delectable dessert. We fervently applaud the bakers at the Community Food Co-op. I would give you the name of the baker, but there are a few who could have made it today. Then, I paused for thought and asked him, “Did you know you were choosing something gluten free and vegan”? He said he knew about the gluten free part, but didn’t know what vegan meant. I explained: Vegan = no animal products. And vegan products are a quick way to find dairy free foods.

We’ve been on a bit of a diet overhaul around here (they’re all so patient with me!). I was trying to organize who in the household was sensitive or allergic to what foods. What with the 5 of us, it had become too confusing until I found a reference to blood type diets at the end of Ann Louise Gittleman‘s nutrition book. Since reading the Dr. Peter J. D’adamo nutrition books, everyone in my house is feeling VERY good – which is a coup with children and schooling! Hence, my son being aware of his ‘gluten-free’ status. We are not strictly adhering, but I’ve learned to teach the children (and adults) that eating certain foods = optimum (sport) performance. Not a hard sell. FYI: hockey, lacrosse, mountain biking, swimming, sailing…

Happ Birthda

You know what’s missing? Y.

Y is the sky blue? Y do the ducks quack? Y do I have to wear a hat? Y do I have to go to school? Y can’t I take the car? Y don’t you like my boyfriend?

And that’s where the boyfriend’s mother comes in. She creates a kitchen of refuge and acceptance. She introduces me to vegetables like kohlorabi. And she listens. And she listens. She offers the advice of a friend. And then one day she is a friend and a MIL*.

Today is her birthday – Happy Birthday!! xxoo Love G

*MIL = mother-in-law