Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Fruits, fats, and fermenting...

Bowls of fresh fruit salad do not last long in our home. My usually fruit-phobic 17yo son devours bowl after bowl without complaint, a regular mimic of Oliver with, 'please mum, may I have some more?'
Though he touts that he is fruit-phobic he does like strawberries, green apples, and pineapple on their own, but his repertoire of fruit increases when it is diced and mixed in a large bowl.
Perhaps you have a family member like that?
He is the same with my Spicy Chicken and Pumpkin soup (HERE). It is loaded with an assortment of vegetables - every one on his hate list! - but cooked together and pureed? He can't eat enough!
From the farmer in the park on Saturday I bought a fresh pineapple. I am wary of pineapples because I always seem to end up with a sour one (could be because I have bought them from the supermarket??), Mr Farmer's pineapple was juicy and so sweet!
I used 1/2 of it to make a pineapple upside-down pudding.
The difference with this recipe was my choice of fats. I used coconut cream - a very healthy fat, and one that adds extra moistness to the cake batter as well as giving it a true tropical flavour. Perfect for life in the tropics!
 Again on the baking side of things, I made a batch of fermented ginger and date muffins using a slightly altered recipe from the Nourishing Traditions book. This is the third time I've used the recipe, and the one thing I keep forgetting to do is omit the salt in it. 
I seem to keep coming across American recipes that use way more salt that we Aussies use, and to be honest I have never used salt in a 'sweet' baked product before so I really notice it. I was watching Martha Stewart the other day and was surprised (again) at the amount of salt used in the recipes on her show. I hope I am not offending my US friends - it's just an observation I felt the need to mention.
Even though I use nutritionally rich Celtic Sea Salt, I still avoid salt as much as possible.
The muffins are lovely, but that salt edge needed butter to tame it.
My sour dough starter was perfect by day 3... I mixed some of it into my sour dough bread mix today. It will sit, ferment and rise overnight, and I'll bake it tomorrow afternoon.
Here is a very easy, and extremely tasty vegetable side dish you might like to make. It has no name so let's call it...

~Extremely Tasty Vegetable Side Dish~ 

Chop two cups of fresh greens. I used snow peas, runner beans, and broccoli.
Blanch them in boiling water for 1 minute.
Strain them. Don't rinse.
Mix together 1/2 tablespoon Sesame Oil, and 1 tablespoon Braggs Liquid Aminos (or low salt soy sauce), and toss the vegetables in this whilst still warm.
Toast some flaked almonds and scatter across the top. Serve immediately. Delish!
Using different fats and oils gives us a wider range of nutrients - sesame oil adds a wonderful flavour!
Healthy Hugs
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