Tuesday, November 22, 2011

When Life Gives You Apples...

I ALWAYS have apples in my fruit basket. Ever since my boys were big enough to chew, they have loved apples; it isn't uncommon for them each to eat 2 a day! Maybe that has something to do with their mom being a doctor...? ;) Apples are a good source of soluble fiber, pectin, which helps to lower cholesteral and aids the body in elimination of toxins. Apples are helpful in regulating digestion, improving both constipation and diarrhea. They are also a great source of vitamin C.

Recently, my mom delivered a bag overflowing with apples from her tree. They were less-than-perfect to look at and more than even my children could consume so I took the opportunity to play with my new kitchen toy: a steamer juicer! I had used it to make grape juice before, but apples were a new one. A wonderfully simple process, I filled the basin with water, heaped quartered apples in the steamer basket, covered, and left it on the stove for a couple of hours.

Here's the "before" picture:

After 2 hours, I drained off almost 2 quarts of apple juice into clean jars I had sterilized and kept hot in my oven set at 200.

The juice turned out thick, almost like a syrup, as it cooled and my kiddos didn't really like the mouth feel. So, what was I to do with it? I found a recipe for Delicata Squash with Rosemary, Sage, and Cider Glaze and it turned out FANTASTIC! It will be on my table for Thanksgiving this year (though this time I'll be making it with butternut squash as all the delicata was gone from my local farm store). So, when life gives you apples, make apple juice...and then make this!

Happy Thanksgiving and Bon Appetit!

Dr. Crystal

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Mama Bean’s Kitchen Sample Menu and Survey

In addition to making delicious things for my family and sharing them with you all I have also been in the process of starting a new business called Mama Bean's Kitchen. We’ll be delivering prepared meals to customer’s homes that will simply need reheating or can be frozen for later use. The meals will be locally handcrafted using fresh, whole, sustainable ingredients. The first step I am taking in the business is to do a little market research. First I would like to introduce my menu then invite you all to take a short survey. As a thank you for taking the survey I will be sending out $5 off coupons to everyone who has taken the survey once the business launches. Thank you so much for your consideration and support in this new endeavor. Please feel free to send anyone a link to this blog entry you might think is interested in helping me gather data.

Sample Menu
Soups – $10-$14
Pumpkin Sausage soup (vegan & gluten free options)
Tomato Cous Cous
Minestrone (vegan & gluten free options)
Chicken Meatball with Orzo

Entrees – $12-$16
Risotto Pie (vegan & gluten free options)
Mushroom and Lentil Pot Pie (vegan option)
Chicken and Dumplings w/mashed potatoes

Baked Goods – $8-$18
Cinnamon Rolls
Savory Rolls (with cheese and herbs)
Pie (strawberry rhubarb, pumpkin, apple, seasonal) – dairy free option
Crisp (pear ginger, blackberry, seasonal) – vegan, gluten & sugar free (made with Maple Syrup)
Cookies (snickerdoodles, chocolate chip… who knows)

Follow this link to take the survey: