Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch! SIX group classes a week!

    Nia: Tues and Thurs at 9 am, Fri at 10:15 am

    Yoga: Tues at 10:30 am and Thurs at 6:00 pm

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:15 am

    Please see my website for details! I sub for the City of San Jose and the YMCA so check my website for dates and times!

    I am also available for private Nia / yoga / Personal Training!

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • My Bloggey Past

  • ******

    Chose a month above to visit archives, or click below to visit a page.

Posts Tagged ‘organic produce’

Quiche Anyone?

Posted by terrepruitt on March 27, 2017

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitAs you may know – because I talk about it a lot – we get a box of organic produce delivered twice a month.  The service we have might be different from ones you have heard of because it is not the type of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) that is or used to be the norm.  The CSAs that I knew of were ones where you purchased them for months and you got what they shipped (or what you picked up).  But this one allows me to pick what is in the box – kinda of defeating the purpose of why I joined in the first place, but in the end proving to be best and less wasteful.  Sometimes those fruits or vegetables that I didn’t know what to do with would just go to waste.  So now I can decide.  But, like many CSAs you can choose to ADD things to the delivery . . . like flowers or farm fresh eggs or honey.  Well, I never do that.  But recently I decided to order a quiche.

I ordered the quiche thinking I could pop it in the oven and have a yummy meal.  The description said it was the perfect base for adding fresh herbs or sautéed veggies.  I bought some mushrooms in anticipation of added them atop the quiche.  When I saw the box with the quiche in it I was somewhat annoyed because it did not look like it could feed 4 to 6 people.  It was very small and not even close to be the size of an average pie.  Then I picked up the box and noticed it said DIY Quiche Kit.

SNAP!  I have to make the thing?!?!?  If I would have know that I would not have ordered it.  To me the price included it being made.  Anyway, I was stuck with it.  So what was I going to do but make the damn thing.

The produce box that week included fennel – and you know I love fennel.  So I sautéed the fennel and put it in the quiche.

One of the reasons I did not want to have to make the quiche myself is because I am no good with dough.  As you can see it did not matter that the dough was already made and all I had to do was roll it out.  Even rolling dough out proves to be a challenge for me.  The dough, however, was super-duper yummy!  I think they sell that dough local enough that we can get some.  It was so good.

So, I made the quiche.  And now that I have made a quiche, I do plan to make more.  I have been thinking I will even make my own crust.  I mean the recipes for crust I have seen seem easy enough (but, ya think rolling out dough would have been easy).  And the recipe for quiche is really easy, I mean, cheese, eggs, and half and half.  How easy is that?  Adding whatever veggies I want doesn’t make it that much more difficult.  So, that is the plan.  I am going to make quiche . . . .eventually, I have other stuff I am trying to deal with now first.

This one completely filled the dish.  I thought it was going to overflow.  Then it started getting too cooked on the edges but was not cooking in the middle.  So I put it in a foil wrap.  I didn’t want the bottom crust or the side crust to burn.  I ended up having to cook it much longer than instructed, about 20 minutes longer.

Here is the recipe and a bunch of pictures of the one I made.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Do you like quiche?  Do you MAKE quiche?

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments »

Watermelon Radish

Posted by terrepruitt on February 7, 2015

So our produce delivery has progressed into something kinda neat, but kinda not.  You may remember me having posted about how I wanted to start receiving a produce box because we would receive farm fresh organic produce.  But one of the main reasons I wanted to get a box was because I would end up with things I didn’t know what they were.  Or I might know what it was but have no idea how to serve it.  So it was a way to get organic produce but also “force” myself into new things.  New fruits, new vegetables.  Again – perhaps not TOTALLY NEW, but something I had never purchased because I didn’t know what to do with it.  Well, that worked for a while.  I was exposed to some new things and learned how to cook and/or serve some new things.  I have acquired some new favorites and have learned that somethings I just don’t care to bother with.  Well, the service has progressed as I started out saying.  It is more like shopping now.  The week before we are to receive our box I get an e-mail that allows me to pick and choose what I want.  So now I am not getting things just arriving on my doorstep.  I kind feel like they are just including standard stuff and if you want anything out of the norm you have to go choose it.  So I am not being “forced” to try new stuff.  Yes, I have the option to choose new stuff, but what really ends up happening is I get the e-mail and I think, “Oh, I can do that later, because I am busy now.”  So I don’t go through the hassle of logging in and looking at all the produce available.  Then next thing I know it is the night before delivery and it is too late to change the standard order.  So . . . . like all progression there are pros and cons.  I did happen to log on for our latest delivery and order something new to me.  Watermelon Radishes.

I love red radishes, but my digestive system and them don’t get along.  They leave me feeling very uncomfortable so I don’t eat them.  I sometimes buy them for my husband.  I put them in his lunch.  When I put them on his salad, I might take a piece and cut it up really tiny and put it on my salad, but I don’t even eat a whole radish.  Just pieces.

I didn’t know what a watermelon radish was.  So I decided to get it.  The information I glanced at prior to ordering stated it was sweeter than a regular radish.

Well they arrived and they are huge in comparison to other radishes.  Sort of, we also received regular radishes in this box and they were the biggest radishes I have ever seen.  So I am experimenting with a watermelon radish.  When I cut it, I took a piece for my hubby and I to try.  It tasted ADance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose,  Nia at the San Jose Community Centers, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex City of San Jose, San Jose Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo LOT more peppery than a regular radish AND it was sweeter.  So either the ones we got were the typical ones described in the descriptions I read or the people writing the descriptions have a different idea of what “sweet” is than I do.

Two sites I looked up this morning had the EXACT, word for word, description of what a watermelon radish is.  I don’t know which site copied which site, but that is always disappointing to me.  If a site states that the information is from another site, that is understandable to me, but just two sites, seemingly unrelated having the SAME EXACT information . . . bah!

Now I am looking at a different site and it is saying that watermelon radishes are the same as Red Daikon.  I have heard of red daikon before, but not watermelon radishes.  I think of daikon as long vegetables.  But round or long they are all radishes.  The watermelon radish is a winter radish.

Wiki states:

The heirloom “watermelon radish” is another Chinese variety of daikon with a dull green exterior but a bright rose or fuchsia-colored center.”

Do you like radishes?  Do you cook them?  Have you had a watermelon radish?

Posted in Food, Vegetables | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Pumpkin For Dinner

Posted by terrepruitt on November 12, 2013

I received a pumpkin in my organic produce box.  I didn’t know what to do with it.  I was looking at one of the blogs that I read on occasion and I saw a recipe for a stuffed pumpkin.  I saved the recipe so that I could make it.  I looked at the post a couple of times while I was thinking about it.  There was a woman who commented with a link to her version of the stuffed pumpkin.  When I posted the original (to me) posting on FB one of my friends commented, “I just made those.”  Which, when she posted the picture to my wall, I vaguely remembered having seen it when she originally posted it.  But it was before I had received a pumpkin so it didn’t really register.  When I went to make my grocery list off of JJ Begonia’s recipe, I realized it was literally like a stuffed pumpkin as in BREAD stuffing.  Like a turkey.  I didn’t want to just use bread.  Then I remembered my friend said she stuffed hers with sausage.  The first two recipes have bacon in them, but I don’t like to buy a pound of bacon for only a couple of pieces.  So I decided on sausage.  I took ideas from all three people and came up with the below stuffed pumpkin recipe.

_______________________________

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Zumba, PiYo, Gentle YogaStuffed Sugar Pie Pumpkin

1 2 to 3 pound Sugar Pie Pumpkin
1-2 tbsp olive oil
salt
Six mushrooms, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped onion
3 cloves garlic (minced)
1/4 pound sausage
1/2 tsp rosemary
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 cup cheese (small chunks)
2 tbsp ricotta
1 tbsp sherry
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
handful of spinach
four slices bread – toasted and cubed

Cut the top off of the pumpkin making a little lid.  Scoop out the pumpkin guts.  Then put a little oil and salt in the pumpkin and place it on a piece of aluminum foil on a baking sheet.  Bake at 350° F for 45 minutes (check it after 20 minutes to see that it is not getting too cooked – after the 45 minutes you want it to be almost cooked, but not cooked so much it can’t stand another HOUR in the oven).

Heat the olive oil in the pan with the 1/2 of the onions.  Once the onions are translucent put the mushrooms in the pan and cook them.  Sprinkle with salt.  As they are cooking mix in one clove of garlic.  Cook the sausage, either after the mushrooms are cooked or use a different pan.  If the sausage has a lot of grease drain it off once the sausage is cooked before you add the sausage to the rest of the ingredients.

Mix the mushrooms and the sausage in a bowl.  Add the rosemary and thyme.  Mix in the remaining two cloves of garlic and the onions.  Mix in the cheese.  Mix in the sherry and most of the cream (save a splash for the inside bottom of pumpkin).  Add the spinach and bread cubes last.  Mix it all carefully.

Pour the remaining splash of cream in the pumpkin.  Spoon the mixture into the pumpkin.  I used the spoon to press it down into the pumpkin.

Put the pumpkin in the oven for 60 minutes.  After about 20 minutes I put the “lid” on.  The pumpkin is done when you can gently pierce its side with a sharp object.  Check to verify the inside it cooked to your liking.  Since the mushrooms and the sausage are already cooked it is just a matter of it heating up and melting the cheese.

Slice and serve.

_______________________________

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Zumba, PiYo, Gentle YogaThis was good, BUT . . . . . I have some adjustments I would make for next time.  I was thinking it would be full of flavor so I hardly used any salt which left it almost flavorless except for the thyme.  Next time I will use LESS thyme and more salt and some pepper.  You will notice I didn’t put any pepper in this.  I don’t use pepper.  But I can when I think that a recipe needs it.  I will salt the inside of the pumpkin more prior to baking and prior to filling.

This was ALL that we had for dinner with a small salad and it was PLENTY!  We were full.  We each had a half.  We did not have a pumpkin each.  🙂

As you can see from just this post there are at least four recipes to make stuffed pumpkin.  I purposefully didn’t say what type of sausage, cheese, or bread I used because I want you to find your own flavor and texture.  So follow one of the recipes or do it your own way.  You have the basics . . . go play!  If you do not follow my recipe . . . . please, please, please, tell us what you did.  I would love to hear of more ways to make a pumpkin dinner!

Happy Fall!

I had not stuffed a pumpkin before.  Have you ever stuffed a pumpkin and baked it? 

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments »

Beans I Like

Posted by terrepruitt on August 20, 2013

I recently received green beans in the organic produce box we get.  I made Green Beans, Walnuts, and Onions.  LOVE THAT.  So this past weekend I bought some green beans at our Farmers Market.  I plan to make that again.  It is so good.  My husband even mentioned after I made it that he doesn’t care for green beans nor walnuts, but he loves that . . . what did I tell you?  I like green beans.  I don’t make them often because . . . well, you know.  Sometimes, if I am not making the previously mentioned recipe, it is probably because I don’t have walnuts, so I just sauté the green beans.  I don’t typically boil vegetables.  I just sauté them cooking them only slightly.  I like them to still have crunch when I bite into them.  I don’t like soggy beans.  I cook them basically the same as if I am cooking them for the recipe. Green beans are good healthy vegetable.

Most vegetables lose some nutrients in the cooking process.  Also for most vegetables the less they are cooked the better.  According to several sources on the internet one cup (100 grams) of raw green beans yields:

31 caloriesDance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Zumba, PiYo

12.20 mg of Vitamin C
14.40 mcg of Vitamin K
690.00 IU of Vitamin A
0.14 mg of Vitamin B6

211.00 mg of potassium
2.70 g of Fiber
33.00 mcg of folate
37.00 mg of Calcium
1.83 g of protein
0.07 g of omega-3 fats

Green beans are a great source of anti-oxidants such as Vitamin C and Beta-carotene.  In addition to the anti-oxidants; Vitamin C and Beta-carotene, the rich color of green beans provide phytonutrients like carotenoids, another anti-oxidant.  As a reminder antioxidants help the body reduce the inflammation.  More and more studies are linking disease with chronic inflammation.  You know my theory . . . food that can help our body reduce inflammation is something we want to add to our diet.

Green beans can be eaten raw.  Just munch on them like you would a carrot or a slice of bell pepper.  Green beans also make a great addition to a salad.  Cut them up and throw them in a green salad or a pasta.  I love vegetables that can be eaten cooked or raw.  When they can be eaten both ways it is almost as if they will be eaten more often because of the variety in which they can be eaten.  I would eat them a lot more if my husband liked them.  I don’t really like to make him eat stuff he doesn’t like even though it is good for him.

It really is funny because these used to be the only kind of beans I like.  Now I somewhat like garbanzo beans, and I eat kidney beans in certain recipes like my bean salad or red beans and rice (For Bean Salad recipe click here / For Red Beans and Rice recipe click here).

So do you like green beans?  Do you like to eat them raw?  How do you like to cook them?  Have you tried the Green Beans, Walnuts, and Onions?

Posted in Food, Vegetables | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Fennel Turkey

Posted by terrepruitt on March 5, 2013

I had received fennel before in my organic produce box.  I didn’t know what to do with it.  So I did what I always do with vegetables.  I roasted it.  It was really good.  I was surprised. I might have received it another time after the first, but I am not sure.  In my last produce box I received another fennel bulb. I was going to roast it to go with dinner.  I had taken some ground turkey out of the freezer to defrost.  When I went to cook the fennel I realized I didn’t have anything to cook with the turkey.  If I am cooking ground turkey to put in something, like a tortilla, I don’t mind it being just cooked meat.  If I don’t have something like that to put it on or in, I liked to add something to it.  So I decided to cook the fennel in a pan, then add the turkey to it.

I didn’t have any onions so I used those dehydrated kind.  Normally my flavor is onion, as in I use the onion to flavor the dish, but this time I wanted the fennel to do it so I didn’t use a lot of the onion.  Had I had a fresh onion I would have used about 1/4 in order to allow the fennel to be the main flavor.

You know I love to cook veggies and ground turkey.  It is one of my “staple” menu items.  This combination turned out really well.

I didn’t measure as I cooked so I am guesstimating as I type:

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaFennel Turkey

2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 bulb fennel, chopped
1/4 onion, chopped
package of ground turkey
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp season salt
1/2 tsp thyme
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 bunch kale chopped
2 turns of pepper grinder

Pour olive oil in pan along with the chopped fennel and onion.  Cook until tender.  Add the ground turkey, the garlic salt, the season salt, and the thyme.  Stir the fennel and meat while cooking.  Add some salt (not all of it).  Cook until the turkey is almost done.  The idea is to just wilt the kale so make sure the turkey is done enough.  Then put the kale in the pan and add the rest of the salt.  Cook only until the kale is wilted.  Then add the pepper.

We had this for dinner this week.  We ate it will pasta.  I like linguine.  I put my fennel turkey on the side, whereas my husband piled his on top of his pasta.

I really enjoyed the flavor of the fennel.  So much so that when I was in the grocery store the next day I almost bought some more.  Then I remembered I am going to get more in my produce box this week.  Yay!  I am happy that I have received a few things I would not have just gone out and purchased.  And I am happy that I have learned I do like these things enough to now go out and buy them.  Fennel is really good!

Tonight we had the leftovers in a tortilla with cheese.  You know me and leftovers!  Awesome.  Leftovers really help when I have a late Nia class.  Currently my evening Nia classes are late, so being able to have dinner on the table within 15 minutes of getting home is necessary.  I grilled my tortilla.  It was really good.  Fennel has a nice flavor.

Have you tried fennel, the vegetable?  If you cook it, how do you cook it?

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Fennel Another One Of THOSE Foods

Posted by terrepruitt on November 17, 2012

As you may have read, I recently received fennel in my organic produce box that I have delivered.  I was excited because I have heard of fennel, but never cooked with it.  I think I might not have even realized that I have had some before.  As I am thinking about it, I bet I had it put on my plate at a restaurant and assumed it was onion and didn’t eat it.  It looks like onion to me although it does not have an onion flavor at all.  The information I am seeing is that it is compared to anise.  Fennel is an herb that is used both as a flavor and a vegetable.  The bottom portion, the bulb is eaten as a vegetable.  It is related to carrots, parsley, dill, and coriander as it is a member of the family Apiaceae (formerly the Umbelliferae).  Its fronds remind me of the greenery on carrots, so it doesn’t surprise me that they are related.  Fennel is vegetation of which all of it can be eaten, the bulb, stalk, leaves, and seeds (I know I’ve had the seeds).  According to the World’s Healthiest Foods, this plant contains a unique combination of phytonutrients.

There is one, anethole, that has shown in animal studies to help with the reduction of inflammation and help prevent cancer.  Now, I have stated over and over that chronic inflammation is the body is not good.  Inflammation is an immune response in the body so having the body be in battle mode all the time is not a good thing.  The American lifestyle with its high stress and the average Western Diet which is full of food stuffs have been shown to CAUSE inflammation.  Having herbs and vegetables that can be easily added to the diet and might help with a chronic condition sounds good to me.  Anethole has also been found to have anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties according to Nutrition You Can.

Fennel also has vitamin C, potassium, and fiber.  Vitamin C is the antioxidant that helps fight against free radicals, the things, that in excess, can cause damage in the body.  Potassium is the electrolyte that is essential for the proper functioning of the heart, kidneys, muscles, nerves, and digestive system.  And dietary fiber is necessary to help with digestion and elimination, which when both are properly working systems tend to signify health.Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Zumba

USDA National Nutrient database states the Nutrient value 1 cup of sliced fennel is as follows:

Energy kcal  27
Protein 1.08 g
Total lipid (fat)  0.17 g
Carbohydrate 6.35 g
Fiber, total dietary  2.7 g

Calcium, Ca mg 43 mg
Iron, Fe  0.64 mg
Magnesium 15 mg
Phosphorus, P 44 mg
Potassium, K 360 mg
Sodium, Na 45 mg

Vitamin C 10.4 mg
Vitamin A 117 AU

I am interested in foods that can help with chronic inflammation, I would like to have more of them in my diet.  At the same time I am interested in reducing the foods in my diet that cause inflammation.  How about you?  Are you interested in foods that might help with chronic inflammation?  Do you think you could add fennel to your diet?

Posted in Food, Vegetables | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

YAY To New Things

Posted by terrepruitt on November 3, 2012

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Zumba

Yay!  I am so excited — I am taking the next level of Nia, Blue Belt AND I received fennel in my organic produce box.  Fennel.  Yay.  Two new things.  As you may know if you’ve read any of my posts about the delivery I receive, I ordered it partly because I wanted to try new stuff.  Yeah, it is possible to go to a store or a Farmer’s Market and purchase produce I have not tried before, but I don’t.  I just stick to what I know.  But when I get it delivered to me then I can work with it.  I am excited to be trying new things.  Ok, I just realized though that while I am cooking with a new-to-me vegetable I did it the same way I do everything.  I have heard about roasted fennel and again, if you’ve read anything about my cooking you know I roast pretty much all my veggies.  So I did that again with the fennel.  This time I also looked at the information on the website of the company that delivers the produce.  Yes, I learned after chopping off the beat greens and throwing them away, that I should find out what portion of the fruit/vegetable can be used.  The information indicated that the bulb can be roasted and the fronds can be used to flavor meat.  I am not familiar with fennel.  It is not a vegetable I even think about.  So I was happy to receive some to try.  Yay a new-to-me vegetable.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Zumba

As soon as I cut the fennel I recognized the smell.  So I must have had the flavor somewhere.  Which makes sense because fennel is actually an herb that is eaten as if it were a vegetable.  I’ve probably had it in a Greek dish or something from the Mediterranean region.  I decided to use some of the fennel with the chicken I was cooking.  I just cut off some of the fronds and put them in the dish with the chicken that I was cooking.  I didn’t change the recipe I was planning for the meat, I just put the fennel tops around the chicken.

The bulb of the fennel I sliced, put in a pan, sprayed with olive oil, drizzled with balsamic vinegar, sprinkled with salt, and put in the oven at 400 degrees F.  I cooked it for about 40 minutes.  It was good, but I thought it was sour.  My hubby didn’t think it was sour.  I am wondering if it was because I took the pieces that were drenched in vinegar.  He doesn’t really like vinegar so I decided to take those pieces.  Or maybe it was just what I was tasting.  But I will get some fennel in the future to see.

I still have some of the fronds left so I plan I using them in other dishes.  Maybe cut up on a salad, added to a soup, or cooked with other meat.

Have you eaten fennel before?  Do you cook with fennel?  How do you cook it?

Posted in "Recipes", Food, Vegetables | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

When Good Veggies Go Bad

Posted by terrepruitt on October 30, 2012

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaOk, so no criminal acts have been committed, but I do hate when my produce goes bad.  I get a box of organic produce delivered, plus, as I have mentioned there is a fabulous produce department on my way home from my Nia class on Tuesdays so sometimes I end up with a lot of produce.  Since I didn’t go to the store and pick out the produce  that comes in the box sometimes I put the veggies in my vegetable bin and forget what is there.  I know that I have it because I took it out of the box and took a picture of it, but then some might get pushed to the bottom of the drawer.  Or I can even go to the store and buy something and then forget about it.  Especially if it is an ingredient in a recipe and I make the recipe and have left overs of that ingredient.  Sometimes I forget I have an entire bag of, oh let’s say, cilantro.  So it ends up going bad.  I do not like to waste food so to have it just sit and get spoiled in my fridge really is annoying. 

My refrigerator even has see-through drawers which helps, but sometimes they are kinda jammed packed (I say kinda because I try not to JAM my vegetables in so as not to damage them, but they can still get pretty full) and I can’t see all that it is there.  So I think I am going to have to start keeping a list on the fridge.  Silly I know, I can just look in the drawers and see, but I don’t wanna have to rummage around in there every time I am thinking about what to cook for dinner.  Plus if I see the list over and over I will remember I have to cook/eat what is on there.  Sometimes I will remember that I have a vegetable that I should use, but then the day will go on and for some reason I will get the idea to make a different veggie.  Then rushing around to make dinner I forget Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Zumbaabout my original plan and the vegetable that should be used first and I just grab and go with my last thought.  Then later —- sometimes way too much later — I remember the veggie I should have used.  With the list I will be reminded when I am ready to start cooking and I won’t have to rummage and it will be right there.  And I can cross off the vegetables as they get used.

Also, some of the vegetables from the farmer’s market are too big for the drawers so they are on top on a shelf and sometimes they get pushed to the back.  With the lists it won’t matter because I will know they are there.  Now I need to make sure I keep the lists updated.  I might end up getting one of those shiny plastic coated board things where you can write and erase.  Yeah, because there is not enough “stuff” on my fridge! 

So do you ever forget you have a vegetable in the fridge and it goes bad before you eat it?  Do you have a method to help you keep that from happening?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Beets Have Better Overall Nutrition Than Dirt

Posted by terrepruitt on September 22, 2012

Since I am still busy with my Nia classes and I have my Zumba teaching debut coming up, it really helps to have produce delivered.  I know Nia and Zumba instructors that can learn a routine in an afternoon and teach it that night.  I am not one of those teachers.  It takes me a long time, so something that saves me a trip to the store is awesome.  But then I do spend a little time trying to figure out what to do with the new-to-me produce.  I also like to look up the nutrition.  One thing I didn’t remember when I received my beets is that the beet greens can be eaten.  I forgot about my own post Borscht Is Beets and I just chopped them off and threw them away.  Now I know.  I do have faith that beets have more nutrition than dirt, but I don’t actually know the nutrition value of dirt, so I really am just going off of faith.

As a reminder beets have anti-inflammatory affects along with antioxidant properties.  According to World’s Healthiest Food website here are some numbers on a cup of raw beet:

1.00 cup rawDance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia   workout, Nia, Zumba
136.00 grams
58.48 calories
folate 148.24 mcg
manganese 0.45 mg
fiber 3.81 g
potassium 442.00 mg
vitamin C 6.66 mg
tryptophan 0.03 g
magnesium 31.28 mg
iron 1.09 mg
phosphorus 54.40 mg
copper 0.10 mg

The website states that the phytonutrients in beets are called betalains and the longer the beets are cooked, the less there are in the root.  They “recommend that you keep beet steaming times to 15 minutes or less, and roasting times under an hour.”  So some of the nutritional value is higher the less they are cooked.  I had mentioned something similar in my Borscht post.

The paper that comes with the produce I have delivered states that the beets were gold beets.  Being unfamiliar with beets I say, “Ok.”, but they were not yellow.  They were deep red/purple — as you can see.  And I KNOW, I have seen yellow beets before.  I had a co-worker who loved beets and she would eat them in all the colors.  Maybe the yellow ones aren’t called gold beets and these really were gold beets?  I don’t know.  The red and yellow pigment in beets lose their “super powers” the more the beets are cooked.

Since I have had my first foray into cooking beets and making something with beets I think I can do it again.  I know I just made a salad, but it wasn’t terrible.  I think I need to move onto something my husband just loves.  In fact when I asked him if he liked beets he said yes and he reminded me that he loves borscht.  I forgot he loved borscht and I forgot I posted about it.  So I think I will actually purchase some beets and give it a try.

This is exactly one of the reasons I chose to have a produce box delivered.  I never would have bought beets — obviously since back in January 2011 I talked about them and STILL haven’t done it.  So now it is one of the things I can add to our list of vegetables for us to eat.  I have the tendency to buy the same vegetables over and over even though I know variety is good.  I just don’t buy it if I don’t know what to do with it.  But when it lands on my doorstep, I feel as if I have to find something to do with it.  I am so excited to be expanding my produce horizons.  I also love that so many people have ideas on what to do with these new-to-me items.

Do any of you like Borscht?  Do you have a recipe for it?  

Posted in Food, Vegetables | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Dirt Is A Flavor

Posted by terrepruitt on September 20, 2012

You might have read in my blog I am having an organic box of produce delivered to us.  I love it.  It is so nice to have produce and not have to go to the store.  It is nice to have organic produce.  So far I really like this.  You might also know that part of the reason I decided to have a box of fruits and vegetables delivered is because I was hoping I would be “forced” to use produce that I normally wouldn’t buy.  The last box I received had figs in it.  Turns out I am ok with figs.  I so enjoyed the salad with figs I had made, I tried to order the next box that had figs but I waited too long.  I only have delivery every other week.  Farm Fresh To You posts what will be delivered in a week the week before so I had known for a whole week, but I waited until the day before to decide that I actually wanted an additional delivery.  It was not enough time for them to do it.  So I missed out on another delivery of figs.  But . . . in addition to the figs you might have noticed in the picture I posted on the first fig post that I had beets delivered.  Now, I KNOW I don’t like beets.  I have tried them, and I don’t like them.  They taste like dirt.  For those of you that don’t know what dirt tastes like, eat a beet and then you will know.  So here I was with dirt to deal with.  I was wondering, “WHAT DO I DO WITH A BEET?”

In the same conversations I had with people about figs I had asked about beets.  One person said to boil them, peel them (the skin will come right off), and then put them in a salad.  I think she said she cooks them then uses them as she needs them (within a reasonable amount of time.  A couple of days or so.).  Another person said she didn’t like beets, so she had no suggestions.  Again, I was faced with a salad.  That was the only thing I found that sounded remotely appealing.  I was thinking I would boil the beets and then put them on a salad with goat cheese.  Goat cheese seemed to be what I was finding as the cheese of choice with beets.

But you might have read that I was thinking about making a salad with figs.  The recipes I was finding for figs in salads called for feta.  But for me, I was thinking that the goat cheese would go better with the figs as it is creamy and mild — almost flavorless.  And the feta — which to me is firm and much more flavorful — would go better with the beets.  I was thinking the beets needed a strong flavor to help drown out the “dirt” taste.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia   workout, Nia, ZumbaOne recipe I spotted said to roast the beets.  Well, heck, why didn’t I think of that?  Perhaps you know roasting is my prefered method!  Geez, can’t understand why I didn’t think of that.  Especially since I mentioned roasting beets in Borscht is Beets!  Well, just as I did with the figs I didn’t read the recipes because I thought I could figure it out.  I skimmed them and I saw some say, roast on a pan without foil and some say use foil.  One recipe said the skin will come right off.  Well, it didn’t so much for me, but it turned out ok.

I roasted them until they felt somewhat soft.  I think it was at least 50 minutes, but I am not sure because I just kept resetting the timer and would run off to do whatever it was I was doing.

I had roasted the beets with olive oil and salt and a little garlic salt and I have to admit that even though while I was cutting them they smelled like dirt, they didn’t taste overwhelmingly like dirt.

Salad with beets:

mixed greens
pecans
beets (roasted with olive oil, salt, garlic salt — 375 degrees F for about 50 minutes)
feta cheese
olive oil
balsamic vinegar

Yay!  Another produce item that I had not eaten before and I NEVER would have bought at a store or farmer’s market.

How about you?  Do you like beets?

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »