Summer Eats. Georgia Peach Crisp.

 

 

One thing I love about living in the state of Georgia is in the summer the peaches are in abundance and super cheap. I love peaches all ways: plain, grilled, baked or even in a salsa. One of my favorites is my Great Grandmother’s peach pie my Mom used to make, my Mom is a fantastic pie baker. Since we cannot all eat gluten I have not baked a pie in SO long. It is rather depressing. I am not ready to attempt a gluten free pie crust for fear it will flop and add to my disappointment. So I opted to make a really crispy peach crisp. It hit the spot and satisfied all our “pie” cravings. The topping is very crispy and the inside is creamy and warm. I hope you enjoy it.

Georgia Peach Crisp

photo-53

Ingredients:

filling.

  • 8 peaches, sliced
  • 1/4 c. raw sugar + 1/2 t. molasses (makes homemade brown sugar)
  • 1/2 t. kosher salt
  • 1/4 c. gluten free all-purpose flour or regular if you are no gluten free
  • 2 heaping t. cinnamon
  • 1/4 t. nutmeg

topping.

  • 1 1/4 c. old fashioned oats (could use GF or regular)
  • 1 c. gluten free all-purpose flour or regular if you are no gluten free
  • 1 c. raw sugar + 1 T. molasses
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • pinch of all spice
  • 1/2 t. kosher salt
  • 3/4 c. almonds, roughly chopped
  • 1 stick organic unsalted butter, really cold – cut into chunks

Preparation:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350
  2. Lightly butter an 8×8 dish and set aside
  3. Mix together your topping ingredients, all except the butter
  4. Add the butter and use your hands or a pastry cutter to work the butter into the dry ingredients. I found my hands the easiest to use. Keep mixing until you cannot see chunks of butter anymore
  5. In a large bowl, mix all of the filling ingredients together gently. Peaches tend to fall apart, so be careful when mixing. Make sure all the peaches are coated evenly
  6. Pour the peaches into your glass baking dish. It doesn’t need to look pretty, just evenly divided out
  7. Slowly add the topping, pressing it down firmly. Make sure all the sides are covered and you cannot see the peaches
  8. Bake uncovered for  40-50 minutes. It all depends on your oven. I would start checking at 40 minutes, mine took 45 minutes. You know it is done when you top is lightly browned and you can see the peaches bubbling out (SO GOOD!)
  9. Serve it with vanilla bean ice cream or eat it alone. Enjoy!

*TIP* place a baking sheet on the rack under your peach crisp. Some of the peaches will most likely bubble out and this will save it from smoking at the bottom of your oven!

Advertisements

Day Fifty Three. Comfort Foods {Savory Meatloaf}

Day Fifty Three.

 

I will be the first to admit I love food. Food is comforting to me and even more than just eating it, cooking it. I can zone everything out and cook or bake and my world is just fine. For instance, tonight my husband was home early from work and I was in the “cooking zone”. I was busy making meatloaf, honey glazed carrots and buttery mashed potatoes. The littles (3 of them and a dog) were all running around screaming, wrestling and well, just being the noisy kids they are. Me, I was in my kitchen, cooking and not really hearing the loud-chaotic household. My Husband looked like a poor deer in headlights. Obviously he was not feeling my zone.

 

Comfort is something we all crave. The last few months I have felt fairly uncomfortable in my kitchen. Learning the art of cooking gluten free, and believe me it IS an art, knowing my “new” ingredients, understanding healthy cooking, it has been a huge learning curve and it has been a long time since I could get in that “cooking zone”.  Tonight was complete kitchen bliss. Topped off with every one, including the baby, gobbling it up and asking for seconds. That does any cook a world of good. Doesn’t it?

 

I hope that my posts encourage you to jump all in and start the healthy real food lifestyle. It DOES seem impossible at first, it IS overwhelming and it IS a budget increase. BUT the benefits have far outweighed all the cons and you DO adjust, taste buds DO change and you WILL find ways to make your dollar go further.

 

Here is the recipe for my Mom’s meatloaf. She has made this for our family for years and it one of those things that when I make it and start to smell it baking in the oven my heart is warmed and a smile inevitably comes to my face. It reminds me of “home” and good times as a child around the dinner table with my family. I hope the smell of this meatloaf becomes a familiar one for my children and in the future it brings them the same feelings. Do you have a comfort food that does that for you?

 

photo-52

 

Savory Meatloaf {Gluten Free Version}

Ingredients

Meatloaf:

  • 2/3 c. dry bread crumbs, I crumbled up gluten free sandwich bread
  • 1/2 c. organic whole milk
  • 1 1/2 lbs organic ground beef
  • 2 slightly beaten eggs
  • 1/4 c. onion, finely diced
  • 1 t. kosher salt
  • 1/4 t. cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 t. sage, I did not have sage so I used 1/2 t. fresh oregano 

Piquant Sauce:

  • 3 T. organic brown sugar
  • 1/4 t. nutmeg
  • 1/4 c. organic ketchup
  • 1 t. dry mustard

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Soak break crumbs in milk, for around 5 minutes
  3. Mix the meat, eggs, onion and seasonings. I like to use my hands to get a good consistency
  4. Mix in the soaked bread crumbs
  5. Form the meat into a loaf and and place in a greased 13×9 pan
  6. Spread the piquant sauce over the top
  7. Bake for 1 hour or until desired doneness.

Is Monsanto Being Sabotaged?

20130629-083306.jpg

Photo Credit: Francois from Strasbourg, france

Oregon has been in the news recently for growing illegal GMO wheat. This article raises questions to how this actually happened. Is someone trying to sabotage Monsanto by secretly planting the illegal seed or is the government playing the “we didn’t know” card all while trying to hide a mistake?

I am not jumping to any conclusions on the matter, just an interesting thing to think about. Where do you stand? Sabotage or government cover up?

Article copied from: Huffington Post

Monsanto’s Unapproved GMO Wheat Stored In Colorado For 7 Years, Investigators Say

By Carey Gillam

June 28 (Reuters) – Monsanto Co’s unapproved, experimental genetically engineered wheat, which is feared to have potentially contaminated U.S. wheat supplies after it was found growing in an Oregon field this spring, was kept in a U.S. government storage facility until at least late 2011, according to documents obtained by Reuters.

The revelation that the seed for the controversial genetically engineered wheat was kept viable in a Colorado storage facility as recently as a year and a half ago comes as the U.S. government is investigating how the strain of experimental wheat wound up growing in an Oregon field this spring.

The probe by the U.S. Department of Agriculture includes an examination of the handling of the GMO wheat seed that Monsanto directed be sent to the government-controlled National Center for Genetic Resources Preservation in Fort Collins, Colorado, beginning in late 2004, according to Peter Bretting, who oversees the center for the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service.

David Dierig, research leader at the National Center for Genetic Resources Preservation, also said the matter was “under active investigation.”

The National Center uses high-tech methods to extend the viability of seeds for decades, much longer than their viability in conventional storage. The facility took in at least 43 physical containers of Monsanto’s so-called “Roundup Ready” wheat in late 2004 and early 2005, the documents show. The material represented more than 1,000 different unique varieties or lines, according to the documents that Monsanto provided in a heavily redacted format.

The documents were made up of correspondence between Monsanto and the Colorado facility.

Monsanto was shutting down its work with Roundup Ready wheat, altered to tolerate treatments of Roundup herbicide, when it set up a contract dated Nov. 2, 2004, for the resources preservation center to store its wheat seed. Monsanto said the seed was confirmed incinerated on Jan. 5, 2012.

“At our direction, the seed was destroyed … as it was old material and we had no plans for its future use,” said Monsanto spokesman Thomas Helscher, who provided Reuters with the supporting documents. Monsanto also archived some of the wheat at its facilities in St. Louis, Missouri.

When asked if USDA had accounted for all the supplies sent to the Colorado facility, USDA spokesman Ed Curlett said the government probe is seeking an answer to that question.

A USDA spokesman on Friday said the government does believe that all the seed it received was incinerated, and that it cannot account for seed that might have been sent elsewhere.

The Roundup Ready wheat was never approved for commercial use and was supposed to be tightly controlled. Monsanto has said it suspects someone covertly obtained its wheat seed and planted it in the Oregon field to sabotage Monsanto’s work with biotech crops.

The government and Monsanto have said there is no indication the GMO wheat made it into commercial supplies, but the finding has hit Monsanto and the wheat industry hard.

Monsanto has been named in several lawsuits and over the last month, exports of U.S. western white wheat have been curtailed as foreign buyers shun the U.S. supplies and demand assurances that none of the biotech wheat has contaminated the marketplace.

Wheat growers want the mystery solved.

“Determining how it happened would certainly make it easier for us to make sure … that it doesn’t happen again, regardless of whether it was sabotage or some accident,” said Blake Rowe, chief executive of the Oregon Wheat Commission. “Our customers would like to know how it happened.”

20130629-083332.jpg

The “Art” Of Health {updated budget & a new business}

Summer. Relaxing days spent outdoors blowing bubbles and lounging by the pool while the children swim happily. No fighting, everyone can swim without some sort of floatation device needing to be blown up. They can go potty alone, feed themselves and always keep a tidy room oh and no schedules, homework or field trips. What a dream. I don’t know why I wake up most days and think this is reality? We lead a very busy life, probably more busy than most and the last two years has been insane.

 

My Husband and his Brother have been tirelessly working hours on end, after their normal day job, creating an iPhone app. The last two years I have given up my Husband to pursue his dream, creating something with his brother for the iPhone. The day has finally arrived, the app is FINISHED and releasing in the iTunes store TODAY. I could not be more proud of them and I must say the app is really awesome. Here is a little bit about the company:

Screen Shot 2013-06-24 at 8.50.37 PM is an iPhone app that enables artists to share original art with their community and locals to find and buy art. A wall often exists between regular people and the art world. Artists, whether hobbyist or professional, have no simple way to make their art accessible, and everyone else has no simple way to connect with local artists and purchase their work. Finestra changes all that by giving people a chance to preview art on their own wall while hearing the artists themselves tell the story behind the art. Potential buyers can email an artist to set up an appointment or get directions to see the art in person right away. Artists use the app to easily capture, manage, and promote their work professionally, or on a casual basis. Art surrounds us, and Finestra connects us through art to restore the role of artists in our communities and re-imagine our living spaces.

You can watch a 1 min promo video: 

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/61433410″>Finestra Art App</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/user16940238″>Finestra Art App</a> on <a href=”http://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

It would be really awesome if you could go like them on FB: Finestra! Also, if you have an iPhone go download the app and check it out and request your city! You won’t be disappointed 🙂

Thank you for letting me go outside my normal posting to brag on my Hubby. Now back to foodie talk 🙂 The last 4 months has been a time of learning and figuring out “what works” for our family. Thankfully we have finally gotten into a pretty nice groove and I have tailored down our budget A LOT!

After the great purge of GMO’s from our house we were left pretty bare. I had to do a lot of stocking up on normal everyday items that I threw away. It was an expensive first few weeks! Thankfully I have figured things out and I have barely stepped foot into Whole Foods in 3 months! Crazy. I hear from several people that “it was just too expensive”. I get that. It IS expensive. But, you have to weigh the pro’s and con’s of cheap food now… potential health problems in the future or a little more expensive food now and great health later.

 

1045111_10151731752918627_2117745892_n

Here is the break down of a general week in food for us. First, I get this really amazing farmer’s market basket every week that consists of local produce. I get a large basket and I typically add on 18 organic farm fresh eggs. It generally costs me around $30 dollars a week for everything you see pictured above. I also get my local raw honey from here for a great price! Do you have a local farmers market or farm share near you that you love? I would highly suggest looking into it if you do not know.

I do the rest of my shopping at Publix and Costco. Publix is generally just for spices, organic chicken, milk and gluten free items. Costco is awesome for frozen organic veggies, snacks and organic beef! We spend around $90.00-$100.00 a week in these places, sometimes it is less depending on what toiletries we need. So, in a month we generally spend $490.00 on groceries and toiletries.

I will do a much more detailed post in the future, but for now I need to help my Husband finish the last touches for our app release party here tomorrow night.

 

Day Fifty Two. Eat Healthy + Gain Weight = Happy.

Day Fifty Two.

190548_10151641874593627_1489466952_n

 

I never thought I would see such a drastic change in my son just by changing his eating habits. I knew that eating healthy has it’s benefits, but I would have never guessed I would get these results so quickly. This update on my sons health makes me tear up with happiness. All those nights spent worrying if my son was growing, why was he hurting, does he have some major illness, etc…all gone, just a memory and a memory that seems like it was years ago, not just a few months.

If you are just joining my blog let me fill you in on our journey. My three year old son suffered several “symptoms” that I could not let pass by anymore and I had to get answers.

  1. He never had a normal bowel movement, it was always diarrhea and frequently would have whole undigested food in it.
  2. Horrible, horrible foul smell from BM’s.
  3. Was very irritable.
  4. He wet the bed.
  5. Would wake up several times throughout the night whether it be a bad dream, tummy ache or just restlessness. At 3 years old he still had only “slept through the night”  maybe 3 times. Sleep stretches would be no more than 3 hours at a time.
  6. Nail biting.
  7. Poor weight gain, which eventually started to get to weight loss (this is when we took him to medical doctors).
  8. Poor growth, short stature, although this was less concerning being that both my husband and myself are shorter.
  9. Extremely picky eater. Poor appetite.

It might not seem like a lot to you, but for me as a mom I just knew something was not right. We went through several different tests which all came back clear for any major problems. Whew. All we discovered was that he had high fat content in his stools and had trouble with nutrient absorption. Our GI Specialists suggested taking him off gluten to see how he responded.

We not only took him off gluten but we proceeded with a 60 day detox of all GMO’s. I started seeing results almost immediately. His attitude seemed different. He was a happy kid again, as the weeks go by things keep improving.

  1. His bowel movements look normal. No more diarrhea. Food is processed and it smells SO much better.
  2. He was happy. Still whines like your normal child, but nothing like before.
  3. No more bed wetting! Bye-bye pull ups!
  4. Sleeps 12+ hours a night. Seriously, amazing.
  5. Still bites his nails, but I think it has to do more with just being nervous. It did stop for awhile, but that has returned.
  6. February 2nd weighed in at 31 lbs. June 2nd weighed in at 35.5 lbs! 
  7. February 2nd he was still wearing 24 month clothing. June 2nd he now fits 4T perfectly!
  8. “Better” eater, still picky, but he does not gag on food anymore.

I cannot say enough about our new lifestyle and how much it literally has changed our life. Whenever we slip out of our diet due to a vacation or pure laziness I can tell the difference. It is really weird how quickly your body responds to poor eating habits. You start craving sweets and fats more, you get irritable,  it’s a beast. The opposite happens if you increase healthy foods and good fats. Your mood lightens, your are happy, you feel energized and sweets are a thing of the past (haha, yeah right!).

I know I have been lacking on posting, Summer has been super busy. I know you understand, right? Our littlest started walking, she is such a monkey and always into trouble. The other two are just as busy as ever, parties to attend, vacations, swim lessons, etc… I really do want to be posting more and cooking more but life has taken over. I will get back into a regular routine very soon. All Summer vacations are over at this point. We just have one more major event… My Husband and Brother-in-law have been working tirelessly on creating an iPhone app and I have been writing for them as well. I will be announcing their app Thursday, it goes public Friday, and I couldn’t be more excited for them!