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Friday, June 25, 2010

Organics in the news again

I know I have blogged about the word organic before and how, in the US, it is becoming a less than trustworthy label. For me, I have stuck to buying foods that have been labeled organic, produced, manufactured, by companies that have been organic, for years. With all the changes in the regulations of the word it seems like every company now has an "organic" line. Am I supposed to believe that they have changed their purchasing, growing, manufacturing policies overnight....I don't think so.

Anyway here is just more proof that the word "organic" is meaning less and less every day. I am not going to post the whole article, in hopes you will visit the original source to read. I do not want to steal the authors thunder in any way. So visit the site and read the complete text and listen to the audio available.

"...The organic label is meant to signify that a food is relatively environmentally friendly: Organic producers are forbidden from using many synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. When that organic food comes from China, that label may not mean much.
"When I see organic food from China, I question," environmental journalist Michael Pollan told PRI's The World, "how organic is it?" Organics are a $26 billion industry in the United States, and an increasing amount of that is coming from China. Pollan points out, "organic is a very big global business now. People don’t realize it.
"In 2006 alone, China added a staggering 12 percent to the world’s organically farmed land," Global Post reports. With the market growing that quickly, regulations are lax at best. A Chinese grocery chain owner who spoke with Global Post estimated that "maybe 30 percent of farms that put the organic label on their food produce the real thing."..."

Friday, June 18, 2010

How Does the Garden Grow

It grows by leaps and bounds. This year has been the best gardening year. I have the weeds totally under control, the whole garden is mulched with grass clippings, making it so soft to walk on in bare feet. And I am thoroughly enjoying spending time up there. Everything is growing like crazy, we have plenty to eat and plenty for the freezer. Right now we have cucumbers, lettuce, green beans, greens, a couple of peppers, beets, and radishes. So many squash ripening on the vines, and huge tomato plants with so many tomatoes. I can't wait for those to ripen so I can begin making sauce for winter. YUMM!!!

Here are a few pics of our harvest and one of Jackson's last pizza creation. It was so delicious, gluten free, dairy free crust with lots of herbs and greens from the garden.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Radishes

Jackson's birthday was a couple of weeks ago, and he loves radishes, so I decided to try a couple of new radish dishes, just for him. (none of the rest of us are that fond of radishes) with radishes from our garden. I made a radish salad, simple, shredded radishes, chopped cauliflower, cooked, diced potato, celery seed, S&P, a little dill, and mayo. It tasted heavy of radish, not my favorite.

But the dish that was fabulous was radish top soup. I read about using radish tops, the greens not the root, in a soup and adapted it to our dietary restrictions and it was so delicious. Who new you could eat radish tops, they are almost prickly when picked, but so nice and tasty in soup. I think you could make this soup with any green and believe I will be making it this weekend using collards that are ready to harvest fresh from our garden.

Recipe:
Dice up an onion and cook up in a little olive oil.

Add 3 diced potatoes, 3 large hand fulls of radish tops (just clean them you don't need to cut them up or anything) and about 4 cups of vegetable broth. Cover and simmer until everything is cooked and potatoes are mushy.

Now use a blender or I just used my immersion blender, and blend all of this up. Add more vegetable broth if you need it. Then add a can of coconut milk, S&P to taste, thyme and chopped parsley. Let it all heat up, you should have a nice creamy soup. And it is delicious. I did add a little shredded radish on top of the soup for garnish, without the shredded radish it does not really taste of radish at all.
You could substitute cream for the coconut milk and butter for the olive oil if you like.