Monday, January 27, 2014

real food waterfalling into night class

my girlfriend catherine's personal family food change story prompted me to try it with abbie 1.5 years ago.  she successfully turned ADHD upside down with her son 7 years ago and passed that knowledge onto me when i was ready.  

her water drop ignited my waterfall.

last thursday night, she and i teamed up to give a short presentation on real food to an adult english language learning class (catherine has 1/2 of her face peaking out from the back row, HA!).  i am so happy we decided to take some last minute pics together with some of our new "real food" friends.  it was a wonderful night for everyone and we stayed longer than anticipated... which is always a good sign that it was fun and informative:)

catherine shared her story... then i shared mine.  she brought examples of store bought food, with and without harmful processed food ingredients like artificial color, added sugar and preservatives.  

we talked simply about the importance of educating ourselves, our family and friends about real food:
  • where does our food come from?
  • what is in our food?  label reading and food marketing
  • cook from scratch more often - get our kids involved!
  • bring food education back into our schools!
  • make a 10% change - food patriot buying power sends a signal to the market place that!  
i shared some resources like the food revolution lake countymundelein and food revolution latino facebook pages.  thank you chef maria elena (argentina), noelia fernandez (argentina) and caro jaime (el salvador) for doing such an incredible job admin'ing global latino community fb page.  ¡muchas gracias mi amigas!

i tell you what.. it's nostril-numbing cold here right now.  school has been cancelled for today and tomorrow already.  yowzas!

stay warm and cook something cozy!



weekly meal plan update:

i made jamie o's pan baked hit 'n' run chicken recipe a few nights ago and it ROCKED.  (chris texted me at class to say so!)  sorry, forgot to take pics, but it turns out exactly like the lovely link pics - super easy - super tasty - super awesome!!!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

make it - sweet pea fish pie

last weekend was one of the best for the shifdogs.  we took the kids skiing for the first time! all three went off to ski school for a bit and chris and i got to ski alone!  we held our breath a tad as we walked to the bunny hill.  they loved it and keep asking us when they get to go to "ski class" again.  hip hip!!

the trip gave me a little spring in my step (however i could have punched myself in.the.face for forgetting how to ski on the first two runs... it's only been 5 years...ooooof).

yesterday, i decided to meal plan proper again.  i am trying to be more organized... this is my first week in a loooooooooong time.  it's so much less stressful when i have everything planned out - why don't i do this ALL THE TIME!?!?!?!?  thank you tina for asking me what i was making last week - girlfriends rule!

i need simple and convenient - this is my plan of attack:

1.  to make three large from.scratch.meals per week (this allows for leftovers and schedule flexibility).
2.  to utilize my iphone app: jamie's recipes in addition to my favorite cookbooks.  i've been using the app off and on for almost a year.  i am finding the more i use it, the more i love it.  why?

  • the recipes are awesome, organized and very simple to follow.
  • my kids love watching jamie.  so they are always more willing to try a new dish if i tell him it's his recipe.
  • yes, i volunteer for his Food Foundation (USA) and fully gush out the Food Revolution movement... however, if the app sucked, i would not use it and i would certainly not be blogging about it.
  • the app has a grocery list function that  i need lists to keep me on budget and get out of the grocery store fast.
  • the app is free and it comes with a free 10 recipe taster pack.  i liked it so much that i subscribed and i get new recipes every month.  

nervous to rock the recipe boat with your family?  check out this article on how to reform your picky eaters, it hits all the notes on the head for us.  i just sent it to chris and he just emailed me right back. we're vowing to make it through our next meal without telling the kids to eat their food.  i wonder if they will notice?  dinner will be over when the adults are finished, and then we'll clear the table together.  i love when we put our heads together with a plan:)

i chose three recipes for the week, the app made a grocery list for me and off i went to shop.  it was a very quick trip.

last night's dinner:

sweet pea fish pie

mullies notes (if you want to make it gluten & dairy free):
-sub coconut oil for the butter and add a few tablespoons of light coconut milk at potato mashing time.
-sub 1 3/4 c organic rice milk + 1/4 c light coconut milk in place of the the cow's milk.
-i had uncooked shrimp on hand, so i cooked them along with the salmon and cod (all wild caught and sustainably sourced).
-once opaque, let the shrimp cool off for a bit and peel.

my mom came over at this point in the recipe, took a taste and said, "lindsey this is restaurant quality!" score.  i think i started hopping up and down with glee.  she hates peas and mashed potatoes though... so i told her she'd just have to scrape it off if she stayed for dinner.

yes, the kids were sketched out with the looks of the pie at first.  faces tend to go green when they see green... but don't you just love the candles?!  i'm trying to make dinner more fun & special:)

mac scarfed his down faster than chris and i.

chris lit me up, "this is the best meal you have made in a long time... it's super fantastic!"

tommy was slow to get going, but eventually, he got into it.

abbie has a big food goggle problem... color, texture... argh.  however, i made gluten free garlic pitas (evoo & a sprinkle of garlic salt) so she & tommy decided it was worth it to eat 5 bites in between the magical triangle noshing.

i always try and make something they love at dinner.

i have half of a casserole left for tonight!!  yipppeeeeeeee!!!!!

sorry abbie, maybe you'll like it better n.e.x.t. time:)  cuz it's definitely going on the family fav's list!

up and down, up and down...  

embracing the ride, it's going too fast.



i'll be glued to my computer watching the live food tube show event today at 2pm!  some lucky viewer is going to win a free trip to london...!?  


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

homemade "ahs-cweam"

we had some fun last friday.  i have this ridiculous crazy plethora of ginger in my fridge and i really need to do something about it.  just to get some in storage, i decided to peel the gnarly fingers for a bit and whiz em up in my food processor to freeze for easy usage later.

about 20 minutes in mad-ginger-peelage, tommy asked for some "ahs-cream".  i was like... hmmmmmm could i use ginger in ice-cream?  hmmmmmmm.  so i started googling, found some recipes i liked and tweaked up a recipe.  tommy was super engaged so i decided to tape it:)  and yes, the quality of the this video is horribly lacking.  i'm learning... i'm learning... just pretend you have legos in your glasses.

the ingredients in store bought ice-cream really freak me out.  thankfully, if you take the time to label-look before you buy, you can find some great brands that are not made up of "food-like" substances and get back to the basics of cream, milk and sugar... however, if you have sensitivities to dairy like we do, the tubs get dramatically smaller and more expensive (also with shady ingredients sometimes).  so i like to save some mullah, make our guts happy and have some fun in the kitchen with my kids.

don't like ginger?  google your favorite homemade flavor or here's my post on a dark and minty ice cream recipe.  either way,  i promise: you.will.not.miss.the.dairy.people.

ginger chocolate "ahs-cream" (dairy free, gluten free, vegan)
(inspo taken from the sun warrior)

1/4 c fresh grated ginger (use less or omit if you want the chocolate to rule)
1 can full fat organic coconut milk
1 can light coconut milk (i love trader joe's brand)
3/4 c organic brown rice syrup (or raw honey/coconut nectar/maple syrup... they all work!)
1/2 c raw cacao powder
1 tsp pure vanilla
1/2 tsp xanthan gum (optional)

eat plain or top with anything you want... real chocolate chips, clean chocolate syrup, fresh fruit... oh my.  this would be so perfect for sushi night!!

verdict? the kids don't love the ginger... but i sure do.  it's super delish with little chocolate chips in it... perfect perfect for me.  and it's really all about mom anyways...  i am going to try using crystalized ginger or gingerbread cookies next as variations to see if the kids like it better.


no ice cream maker?  well, check out this sweet post: 6 ways to make ice cream without a machine!!

please share your super duper ginger recipes... i need em... i have +1lb of these gnarly dudes still left in my fridge!!!!!

Friday, January 10, 2014

50:50 split = 100% success

we went through a ton of spinach.

here is my belated report on how mac's 3rd grade class liked the "holiday party" green smoothies!

i made two types and talked the whole time to the class while i was prepping and blending.  i made them giggle, asked them questions, talked to them about real food and cooking with their families... it was a riot.  i told them that they didn't have to try it if they didn't want to... nobody declined, even though most of the class agreed i was a "crazy nutball" to be putting spinach into a drink.  i love calling myself that, it makes the kids laugh so hard they give you hugs at the end.

i made two types:

1st batch of green "holiday" smoothies:
2-3 handfuls of packed spinach
1 banana
1/2 pear
1/2 apple
(if you only have one or the other, just use the whole apple/pear)
juice from 1/2 orange
juice from 1/2 lemon
water (to fill line- which almost covers all of the fruit and greens)
zoom zoom

2nd batch of green/red (kinda brownish/purplish) holiday smoothies:
same as above + frozen mixed berries/mango in place of the apple and/or pear

no additional sweetener was needed (i brought organic stevia so happy it's totally unnecessary!)

i passed small sample cups to each student and then they got to pick which type they wanted for a "big" glass.  11 students wanted the 2nd batch and 10 students wanted the 1st batch.  the majority of the class asked for seconds!!!  i whizzed up smoothies the entire time (i made 6 full batches!!!!!) while mary (the other super party mom who is in the middle of our picture) ran games and activities.  there were a handful of parents who also came to the celebration and i was so excited to surprise them at how delicious a green smoothie can be.  by the end of the party, the class could recite the ingredients... i wonder if anyone taught their families how to make them over break?!

miss mekaelian, thank you so much for having me - you and your class rocks!!!!

i can't wait to do it again.  


our morning challenge: drink these smoothies every morning for breakfast... so far so good, today is day #3.  go team shife-dog.


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

living & eating real in america

the storms have retreated... but i am always ready for more.  it's winter, so bring it.

did you see the google chat yesterday with the 3 top chef's & "captains" of the food revolution?

i loved watching and listening to jamie oliverann cooper and alice waters talk about the future of the food revolution.  here is the link in case you missed it.

i think i audibly sucked in my breath and fogged up the computer screen when a question came in at the end about GMO's.  oye's cubed.

that is such a difficult, complicated... loaded question.  it's a hot seat.

"When future historians come to write about our era they are not going to write about the tons of chemicals we did or didn't apply. When it comes to glyphosate they are going to write about our willingness to sacrifice our children and to jeopardize our very existence by risking the sustainability of our agriculture; all based upon failed promises and flawed science.

The only benefit is that it affects the bottom-line of a few companies. There's no nutritional value."

- dr don huber

if you'd like to read more, here is the mercola article i took that quote from.  read, bookmark and pass this one along.  it is excellent and from 2011 (i still had my head up my ass in 2011).  if you want to research more on your own, google this:  "glyphosate and gut bacteria" 

i love the question that was posed by author michael pollen and the answer given by harry balzer, a food industry expert he interviewed in his book cooked (my current nightstand read):

mp: "how, in an ideal world, might we begin to undo the damage that the modern diet of industrially prepared food has done to our heath?"

hb: "easy, you want americans to eat less?  i have the diet for you.  cook it yourself.  eat anything you want - just as long as you're willing to cook it yourself."

well alrighty then.

jamie, ann and alice answered the OMG-GMO question perfectly.  they are leading the globe in a food revolution to eat more REAL food (organic when you can) from as many local & sustainable sources as possible, to start cooking from scratch with your friends and family and to get food nutrition back in our schools where it belongs.  it takes care of the debate

real work+real food+real play=america's food revolution 2014

let's have some fun while we're working to solve this huge food problem we've gotten ourselves into.

i can change the equation with every dollar i spend.  food patriots don't wait for legislation.  even if one can only make a 10% change to a household budget, it's worth it for our children and the unborn generations to come.

there is no destination... let's start living and eating real in america. 


living in america - james brown

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

snow storm=cook+play

we're starting off this year off with some super fun cookin and playin!!

chocolate chip yogurt pancakies (with lotso options)

2 c flour (250g) gf flour blend (or whatever flour floats your boat)
2 T organic sugar/coconut sugar or nectar/maple syrup
4 tsp baking powder (aluminum free)
1 tsp sea salt
2 c organic rice milk (or choose your own milk adventure)
1 organic egg (or the best quality you can get your hands on. allergic?  omit & add more milk/yogurt)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 c light coconut milk (i am addicted to trader joe's brand)
3 heaping spoonfuls of plain full fat sheep's yogurt (just eyeball and dump!)
a pinch of cinnamon (optional)
enjoy life brand mini chocolate chips
ghee/grass fed buttah/coconut oil for your pan

heat up your skillet (mine is lovely cast iron) & smother it with your fat/oil of choice.  pour your batter, and drop chocolate chips into the batter goo while the first side is cooking.  (i drop around 8-10).  cook until the batter bubbles in the middle.  flip it, cook it through and serve warm with grade b maple syrup (i just found out grade b maple syrup is better than grade a... who knew!?)

my left-over-lunch-bowl
(these leftovers came from the food babe's raw brussel sprout good fortune salad recipe.  i jazzed it up with more colorful stuff from my fridge-o-plenty...)

chopped raw brussel sprouts
cooked split peas and red lentils
1 small beet peeled and sliced
1 tomato diced
roasted, cubed butternut squash
marinated artichokes (+ juices from a jar)
roasted red & yellow peppers (+ juices from a jar)
1 pomegranate
a handful of pistachios
s&p to taste

tip: keep all the ingredients in separate containers so that they didn't get all gross and sloppy.

it's been a good 1st day of 2014!!!!  

i like to pretend i'm in colorado when i thrash this bunny hill...  or that i'm in this fav movie 

my girlfriend laura taped this after breakfast today.  so happy she forgot to hold down the button on my first try cuz she caught classic goob:)  so happy it's still snowing hard and it looks like we'll be getting dumped on until well into tomorrow.