Sunday, February 27, 2011

Chocolate Bean Cake

3 eggs

1/2 c sucanat (or sugar)

1/3 c butter (I used coconut oil instead, I'm sure canola or even olive oil would work too)

3 T cacao powder (or cocoa powder)

1 tsp baking powder

a little salt

1 1/2 c cooked garbanzo, White Northern, or black beans

or 1 can (make sure to rinse and drain them)

put ingredients in food processor or Vitamix blender (wet ingredients on the bottom if you are doing it in the Vitamix), blend until smooth, grease pan, I put it in on 350 for 35 minutes in what I think is an 8 X 8 inch glass pan, top with powdered sugar

It was good. It didn't taste like beans. It has a slightly different texture than if you would have used flour, but I didn't dislike it, just different. It reminded me of brownies.

Friday, February 18, 2011

What? Did you seriously just say that?

From a fast food bag, "Our Secret is No Secret. Why does ********'s food taste so good? Because we make it the way you would. With 100% beef. White meat chicken. Farm fresh produce. From some of the most trusted brands in America."

And the chicken says, "An Excellent Source of Happiness."

WHAT??? There are just so many things wrong with this. I don't even know where to start. First, the idea of marketing fast food as healthy baffles me. Second, they make it the way I would??? um, sorry but no. And selling happiness, I don't think so.

Maybe it should read:

Why does ******'s food taste so good? Because we are careful to make sure it doesn't even resemble real food. We put all kinds of artificial flavors and preservatives. With beef from food lots where cows are walking knee deep in manure, fed food that is not part of their natural diet, crowded into cramped quarters, and pumped full of antibiotics so they won't be sick. With chickens who are bred to have breasts so big they can't even walk, much less forage for food like chickens are supposed to. With produce covered in pesticides and shipped from who knows how many miles away.

But then, who would buy that?

Friday, February 11, 2011

Repurposing Project #5: Tissues

So, I had a ton of receiving blankets, and I figured they might as well be put to good use. It occurred to me that they might as well be cut up and made into tissues since that's what they get used for here most of the time. I like that they are much softer than other alternatives for a little nose that is suffering a cold(or mine for that matter) and that they can be washed and reused. Other than the idea, I can't take much credit for this project. It was my sister-in-law who did most of the serging while I cut threads (yeah, impressive I know). So a big round-of-applause for my sister-in-law for hooking me up with some pretty nifty tissues!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Repurpsing Project #4: Backpack

This was one of Chili's Christmas presents, just never got around to posting. I used some leftover fabric that I was going to make into a dress (but THAT never happened. If you are a crafter/sewer/knitter you probably know about those projects.) and part of an old mattress pad that doesn't fit anyone's bed (used to have a bed that fit it, but no more). It's not anything fancy, but she has a good time playing with it. It needs some sort of closure, but I haven't decided what would be best, and so it is eternally propped open.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle Thoughts: How Can We Make a Difference?

Although I am not real convinced that my voice has clout with politicians, I am convinced that my money does have power. Where I choose to spend it, and whom I support with those choices does send a message and make an impact no matter how small...but what if another 100 families in my city made similar choices? What if thousands all over the country did the same? How many people would it take to make a change in our current food system? I don't know. Maybe my changes are only a drop in the bucket, but I can be sure that the changes we are making help align our family values with our food choices.

In Animal, Vegetable, Miracle it states that if every U.S. citizen ate one meal from local, organic ingredients we would save 1.1 million BARRELS of oil every WEEK. That sounds like a lot to me. And that's only a start. What if everyone ate mostly locally??? Doesn't that make you think?

Currently in our country we farm 1.2 acres/person in our country. Based on predictions for 2050 we will only have about .6 acres/ change is coming. Maybe we won't have room to farm corn for the corn syrup for the 219 gallons of soda/person we drink in this country? It is possible to have enough food/person. Barbara Kingsolver calculated that their food footprint for their whole family was about 1 acre (this includes their own produce, animals, farmer's market produce, grain, and dairy). And they ate for about $.50/family member/meal! So the question is will we change when we are forced to, or will we be proactive and be part of positive change.

Here are some things you can do (if you aren't doing them already):
1-grow as much of your own food as possible
2-store and preserve(freeze, can, etc) as much our your own food as possible
3-buy as much of your food as possible at the farmer's market
4-use a food coop to buy large quantities of things like grains
5-for the rest of what you buy, look for products with the fewest ingredients and least processing(the more ingredients, the more things had to be shipped to the factory just to make the product)Example: if you have the choice between a box of cereal and a tub of oatmeal, the oatmeal has the least ingredients and least processing
6-Find local sources (farmers) for beef, chicken, pork, eggs, etc.

Maybe your family isn't ready to embark on the same journey that Barbara and her family did. Mine isn't. But we are committed to making changes, small changes over time that we can stick with. I hope you will think about what changes your family can implement.