Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Day 25 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 30, 2011

2 Eggs Scrambled
Parmesan Cheese and Buttermilk Toast

Blueberry Swallowtail Yogurt 
w/ Maple Syrup

Curry Tofu Saag
w/ Cucumber Salad

A wonderful indian inspired dinner that used up some Spinach I had piling up as well as some tofu I planned on using the evening prior... the recipe is simple... In the food processor I threw in a few cloves of garlic and a shallot... into a pan with some 2tbsp raw butter and 2tbsp maine mustard oil... cube up the tofu and toss lightly with sunflower oil and curry powder... we use the one we got from the Commonground Fair.... put that in the oven under 450˚ until it slightly browns...then, toss in skillet  with about a pound of chopped fresh spinach.  Let simmer on medium for 10-15minutes turning to low after 5min...
 On the side we had a simple sliced cucumber salad with cucumbers that we were excited to see at the Olivia's Garden table at the Winter Farmer's Market tossed with some raw vinegar from Ricker Hill & some Maine sea salt & Maine honey- Yum! 

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day 24 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 29, 2011

Rolled oats w/ Honey

Blueberry Swallowtail Yogurt

Out for Sushi Cheat
(Lots of local items though!)

Today was another one of those busy from morning to night kinda days... its started with a  typical work day with bicycle commute.. then like last week it was time for another wine tasting show, this time it was over to the Holiday Inn by the Bay for Nappi's show.  There was a lot of work to do... Nappi has a large book and I dont think I came very close to covering the whole thing but I found some jems that will be hitting Lois' Natural shelf in the next day or so... Anyway good times were had by all and we ran into a many familiar faces.

Blueberry Ice Cream

Monday, March 28, 2011

Day 23 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 28, 2011

Two Eggs Sunny Up
w/ Kraut & Buckwheat Honey Toast

Swallowtail Yogurt
w/ Maple Syrup

Raw Oysters
 Steamed Periwinkles
Maple Glazed Trout
w/ Roasted Blue Potatoes

Mmmmm Periwinkles !

Very sustainable and yummy... more on oysters this week (I know I said that before but we are so busy !)

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Day 22 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 27, 2011

Blueberry Swallowtail Yogurt

Spinach Omelet
w/ Carrot & Tater Homefries
a couple of Mother Oven Bread end pieces from the freezer !

After such a big lunch we really only needed a snack for dinner.

Sea salt Popcorn

Blueberry Ice Cream

the Debut of "How Green Can You Be ?" by Fitzie Niceness

Brand new song hitting the airwaves throughout New England...

    "How Green Can You BE ?" 

So in case you didn't know Luke aka Lukaduke is also a reggae deejay and part of Maine's original reggae soundsystem called Cognizant Sound.  

a little more info:

Cognizant Sound has been selecting tunes and chattin up the reggae scene since 2002. Representing Cognizant Sound is Geofferson, who is currently based out of Philadelphia and Lukaduke outta Portland, ME. Cognizant Sound has been supplying pure conscious vibes all along the East Coast. With a heavy emphasis on roots and culture, Cognizant Sound will take you on a musical ride through the classic riddims of yesterday all the way up to the current boom tunes running Jamaica and the rest of the world.  Keep updated with all things cognizant at our blog.  Keep it Cognizant !
Also please become a fan of facebook here !

Being part of a reggae soundsystem has really put me in touch with a lot of wonderfully talented people... and Fitzie is no different.  Fitzroy Francis aka Fitzie Niceness was born and raised on the island of Jamaica, growing up Fitzie was inspired by such great reggae singers like alton ellis, gregory isaacs, beres hammond and dennis brown to name a few.  After relocating to New York in the 80's he again found much inspiration from fellow reggae artist coming through NYC to perform , as well as various New York soundsystems like the infamous King Addies Sound with Danny Dread.  It was here that Fitzie's vocal career started gaining momentum creating opportunities for Fitzie to perform alongside such great acts like Frankie Paul, Glen Washington, Screechie Dan and a whole heap of other big artists in the reggae business... slowly creeping his way north Fitzie then relocated to the city of Boston where his fame increased as he started his own record label by the name of F-Nice Productions... it was on this label that Fitzie recorded his first major hit entitled "Back to Jamaica"
It was at a dance held by Stout Style Sound in Boston that I first heard this track played... I was very impressed with the song writing as well as the sweet, soulful voice Fitzie possessed... however it wasn't until a few years later that I finally had the pleasure of meeting him in person, and to my pleasant surprise I found out he was now living in South Portland.  From that day on we have shared our passion for good music and are always pushing each other towards bigger and better things...and it is not uncommon to see Fitzie grabbing the microphone whenever Cognizant Sound is holding it down!

I will surely keep you posted about Fitzie Niceness and the Soul Union Band's upcoming appearances. 

In fact they will be performing at this year Sugarloaf Reggae Festival !


Play this song "How Green Can You BE?" and share it with the world....

It has already received some airplay on WMPG 90.9/104.1 FM

here is a clip from that Danny C's Caribbean Flava show!

  How Green Can You Be Media Coverage for CHF by Lukaduke

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Day 21 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 26, 2011

Plain Swallowtail Yogurt
w/ honey

After a quick bite and a kitchen inspection to see what we needed it was off to the Winter Farmer's Market to pick up a few things and say hello to all my farmer friends !

Baby Chard & Arugula Omelet
w/ Yukon Gold Potato & Bolero Carrot Homefries
w/ Commonwealth Farm basil bagel 
tall glass of cider

Maple Ice Cream w/ Blueberries

Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 20 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 25, 2011
Two Eggs Sunny Up
w/ Kraut and Buttermilk Toast

Swallowtail Plain Yogurt
w/ Honey
Seafood Fettuccine w/ Cream Sauce
Fresh Spinach and grated Swallowtail Parmesan
 Garlic Toast
Maple Ice Cream
leftover Cornbread w/ Blueberry Compote

Oh Yeah... I was excited to see the cornbread I had wrapped in wax paper and stuck in the freezer a few days before when we had some chili for lunch.. I quickly unwrapped in split it in half slathered a little honey butter on it and hit the frying pan to brown it up and thaw it out.. on top of that a big dollop of blueberry compote and then the creamy homemade ice cream we never get enough of !

We LOVE Dessert !

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Day 19 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 24, 2011

Two Eggs Sunny Up
w/ Kraut and Buttermilk Toast

Swallowtail Plain Yogurt
w/ Honey

Seafood Fettuccine w/ Cream Sauce
and grated Swallowtail Parmesan
Bisol Jeio Crede

A quick rundown of how this came together...
Add fresh fettuccine from the fridge to a large pot of boiling water with sea salt
as that boilings to al dente...

grab a skillet and saute butter, fresh crushed garlic & red shallots
adding a small handful of lobster meat as well a a half pound of Maine shrimp

in a separate sauce pan I melted 2 tbsp butter with a half cup of goat cheese and a quarter cup of milk on a very low temperature... giving it a quick whisk.

when the pasta is the perfect consistency strain and toss with cream sauce and sauteed seafood !

Sooooo Goood !

Tossing it all together...
Topped with a heap of Swallowtail Parmesan

(so glad Swallowtail Farm decided to do a Parmesan...this is the first week they have had it...
Keep up the great work guys ! )
accompanied by Bisol Crede 
 another in the great line of Jeio Prossecco

So today's meal was nice and quick seeing that we made extra pasta and I am not gonna lie... its was on my mind all day while I was plugging away at Lois' where I am the produce manager.  Its funny when we decided to dive back into our locavore ways during this 5 week campaign for the Green Wedding Contest, we were so confident that we could do it because we had done it before.  The difference was last March when we were fresh into the LocalrootZ Project we had horded so much food and set up a little more storage food then we had this year.  This year we have been sliding back into our weekly buying habits which sustains our needs from week to week but when the well runs dry... we are left with an empty bucket... for example last year we sauced up a lot of Olivia's Garden tomatoes before they ran dry (we had started the winter off with close to a dozen jars from our own tomatoes but those went really fast this winter, we also had over 50# of hearty winter squash stored in our back hallway last year... this year my bikes took over that storage space and we are left with hoping one of the farms will show up to the winter farmers market with some storage squash ! March is the gray month in between the winter crop and the fresh spring shots that are so close you can almost hear them cracking the soil reaching for the suns warmth that has seemed to escape the ground for the last 4 months !  My point is March and much of April are the hardest months for a locavore in Maine but as you can see it can be done... and it becomes especially easier when you broaden your diet to allow some sort of local protein. Cassi & I were both long term vegetarians when we met and I slowly worked small amounts of the coastal bounties onto our plate...

         We feel confident about our choices pertaining to eating seafood after researching the right species and fishing methods from our local fishmongers as well as using some great online resources such as Fishwatch ! Another great reason to support your local fishing industry is to preserve the working waterfront of this great state.  Year after year you see news reports about the local fishing industry struggling to stay afloat as the city of Portland tries to figure out what to do with the numerous vacant buildings along Portland's waterfront.  These vacant lots are constantly being perused by condo developers who are urging the city to lax its restrictions on what can be located along the salty Casco Bay.   I myself think the "working" waterfront is the heart Portland and urge people who agree to stop by one of the great fish markets located along the wharf and serve up some seafood to your friends and family next time your not sure what to make for dinner.... if you really are curious about the most sustainable protein from the ocean I would urge you to consume oysters ! Oysters are an amazing food that a lot of people are scared of... we were at first and now we consume them pretty regularly... in fact we are  gonna get some this weekend and do a special post about the wonders of oysters !
Stay Tuned...

Ok sorry I digressed a bit.. where was I ? Right I was talking about how we were a little less prepared for the local eating challenge this March as we were last year... rather than get to wordy and to avoid any more passionate ramblings about food, lets take a quick glimpse at our food stock at the start of March !

 in the cupboards we have lots of local goodies... whole corn, beans, seaweed, various locally foraged mushrooms, various types of hot peppers from our garden, cider vinegar, sea salt, oats, wheat berries, sunflower oil, canola oil, dried herbs, honey, popcorn and a curry blend that isn't 100% local but we got it from a pleasant woman from India who had a booth at last years Commonground Fair, she grew some of the spices in the curry on her farm but certain ingredients in the mix just cant be produced in Maine, however she grinds it all herself so we allow it... I mean in reality we will use foreign flavoring occasionally... ever heard of the spice trade.. its been going on for a longtime !  

then there is the freezer.. some frozen broccoli from last falls harvest as well a some frozen blueberries and Lalibela tempeh backstock, along with those you'll see various ends of bread that we will use for breadcrumbs, stuffing or croutons.  We also store a lot of our flours in the freezer...

and then we have the fridge... lots of root veggies potatoes, beets, carrots, celeriac root, all of our krauts and kimchis, yogurt, cheeses, beans, spinach, arugula, baby chard and this weeks newest addition cucumbers from Olivia's Garden... still waiting on their cherry tomatoes to ripen up in the greenhouse but the cukes should hold us over... Thanks Guys !

Alright there is a little update about our food stock as well as some interesting tidbits about our trials and tribulations about finding local foods and why we do it...

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 18 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 23, 2011

2 Eggs Sunny Up
w/ kraut and toast

Swallowtail Yogurt
w/ Honey

Porcini Ravioli

So making an all local pasta isn't something we are unfamilar with, however it is rather time consuming and we seem to wing it every time because all the "recipes" call for certain flours that are not available locally.  In the state of Maine we are very lucky to have a couple old mills that processes all of our wonderful flours.  Currently we have whole wheat, cornmeal, buckwheat and rye flourEvery time we make pasta I tend to explore a new combination of flour types to see how it holds up...

But before I get ahead of myself I should list the ingredients we needed for the whole recipe.
Cheese... chunks of Swallowtail Farm Parmesan, Ricotta & Mozzarella as well as some Sunset Acres Herbed Goat Cheese.1 whole bulb of Garlic and Red Shallots
Dried Porcini Mushrooms (soaked) from Oyster Creek Mushroom Company
 7 Fresh Eggs from Maine-ly Poultry
Whole Wheat Flour & Buckwheat Flour

 Ok with those ready to go... we start with sifting the flour...
 4 cups Whole Wheat / 2 cups Buckwheat
you'll notice the "hulls" collect in the sifter... discard and continue till you
cant pull any more out of the mixture...
 With the flour is ready... create a well and add your eggs into the well...
I pre-beat the eggs this time and it seemed to help with the mixing process !
 After thoroughly mixing the flour and egg and a small (1/4 cup-1/2 cup) amount of water...
Need the dough into manageable balls until the mixture is of an even consistency! 
 Let the balls rest for 10-20 minutes
From there comes the tedious process of running small chunks of the dough through
the pasta rollers... constantly folding the sheets in half and re pressing them through the rollers.
The more you roll out your pasta the more likely it will hold its form when you boil it. 
We usually pull every sheet through 6-10 times till it reaches the desired thickness.
With the pasta in sheets it was time to trim them up...
this step of trimming isn't quite as important when making things like
fettuccine or spaghetti but an even edge is what we needed for tonight's
ravioli dinner !
Now for the ravioli filling... we just combined all the cheeses in various amount... to taste, that way you get to eat a little during the cooking process...along with cheese we added half of the
hydrated porcini mushrooms as well as half of the garlic and shallots that I had previously sauteed in a little raw butter.
After the filling was complete... it was time to cut the pasta sheets into the ravioli size
we desired...
a heaping dab into the middle of each sheet...
encase it with a top and press the sides with a fork...
the meal is nearing completion... bring a big pot of water to a boil !
Not bad for our first Whole Wheat Ravioli !
Into the boiling water they go... while also sauteing a pan containing
the remaining shallots, garlic and mushrooms with a dab of butter.
I also hit it with a splash of red wine to enrich the flavor a little more...
Dinner is finally coming together after only 3 hours....
now I remember why this is such a treat !
And there is the final dish with a little more grated Parmesan to top it off
I think we were so excited to eat after such a long time preparing dinner that we never got a great picture of the final product... but I can tell you honestly that they were fantastic...
and we planned well for leftovers !
We cut the remains of the pasta sheet into a hearty Fettuccine that will
get us through the rest of the work week with a smile on our face !

Check back soon to see what we do with the fettuccine...

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day 17 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 22, 2011

Cooked Oats w/ milk n honey

Swallowtail Yogurt
w/ Maple Syrup

Cider Scallops
w/ Spinach & Kale

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 16 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 21, 2011

Sunny Up Egg
w/ Sauteed Tempeh

Plain Swallowtail Yogurt
w/ Honey

We cheated...and went out for sushi

Yes we failed at dinner tonight, however after working all morning and rushing home to attend Sopo Wine companies wine & beer tasting at Grace all afternoon and into the early evening... hey easy its part of my job description to taste all those beverages...we were in need of an indulgent and easy dinner.  We thought about a few options and decided the quickest and easiest one for a Monday evening was to go have some sushi.  Yes it was very very good !

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Day 15 Local Eating Community Giveback

March 20, 2011

Cooked Oats w/ Maple Syrup 
& raw milk

Egg Sandwich w/ Spinach
on Buttermilk Toast
 Maine Shrimp 
w/Mixed Greens Spinach & Baby Chard

Celebrating some of the new found greens from yesterdays farmers market. The days are getting longer and hopefully some more warmth is on it way !  Today is the first official day of Spring....

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Local Eating Community Giveback Event !

LocalrootZ Project @ the Portland Winter Farmer's Market !

Cassi & I were very honored to be able to use the Farmer's market as an outlet to get our message of green living out to the world.  Usually the market has very strict regulations as to who can set up shop at the market,  leaving the vending to farmers and farmers alone !  But since I have helped the farmer's market in the past by designing the market fliers and promoting it through every and all forms of social media, they decided to make a one time exception for us !  Not only did they allow us to come but they also made us feel so welcome with a special little sign as well as this facebook post...

"We have 2 very special guests joining us at tomorrow's Winter Farmers' Market! Lukaduke Fuller and Cassi Madison will be with us to talk to the community about eating local and living green. Come and get inspired, and enjoy your favorite Maine farmers & food... Also check out this amazing contest that Luke and Cassi are finalists in to win the green wedding of their dreams @ Clay Hill Farm !  VOTE HERE "  Portland Winter Farmer's Market

the market was bustling from early on....
lots of people from young an old came to check out what the farmer's had been up to this week...
being the winter it becomes a contest to see who can preserve last falls harvest the longest...
 and there is our LocalrootZ table
we had lots of info to share including a typed up handout that had our top six reasons to eat locally on one side with the other side containing a list of our favorite books, websites, farms and other local resources to help people in their search for local food. (If you missed us you can find most of these resources under the recommend tabs on the right side of this blog!)

It was so exciting to share our passion for the environment with so many new faces.  It was also amazing how many people said they already check in pretty regularly to our blog... 
 As you can see below, we used some of my artwork and a couple of our newspaper articles to draw a little crowd over to our table as well as to stimulate some conversation !

If you still have yet to see our newspaper articles here are the links...

and here we are enjoying a quiet moment during a lull in the early afternoon !

and the best way to lure farmer's market patrons to the table... FREE FOOD !
We prepared a 100% local snack...we decided that a Spicy Bean Dip on Buckwheat Rye Crackers would do the trick.  It seemed like the best option was to go with a finger food, that way we didn't have to worry about serving dishes, limiting the amount of waste !  Needless to say they were a big hit and so many people were asking us how we made a local cracker... stay tuned for a full recipe later this week !

In closing we wanted to thank the Winter Farmer's Market once again and also thank each and everyone who stopped by our table.  In the spirit of the Community Giveback we tried to concentrate more on education and less on campaigning for votes...

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