Well, another week­end gone, another week of sum­mer lost. I swear, the days are just falling away and sum­mer seems to have dis­ap­peared again. It was 59 when I woke up this morn­ing and so cold in my office that I never took my zip­pered jacket off all day.

Despite the cold tem­per­a­tures, the pro­duce con­tin­ues to mul­ti­ply! And with that pro­duce comes exper­i­men­ta­tion. I’ve still be play­ing with smooth­ies in the Vita-Mix daily.

greeniesmoothie

Kale, spinach, a red plum, kiwi, banana, straw­ber­ries, green pow­der and oat milk.

greenie2

It was a lit­tle tangy from the kiwi and deli­ciously creamy.

Next up in the Vita-Mix, I made some flour. From scratch! I did not use the dry blade con­tainer, as I was told by some­one from Vita-Mix (off the record…) that you can make flour just fine with the reg­u­lar blade.

wheat berries

Hard spring red wheat berries. I couldn’t really fig­ure out what kind would be best for bread, as there are so many vari­eties, but I set­tled on these after notic­ing how com­mon they are.

flour

About 45 sec­onds later! Fric­tion lead to heat, which lead to an amaz­ing aroma upon open­ing the con­tainer. It smelled like a fresh, warm loaf of bread!

flourcloseup

The tex­ture was a lit­tle grainy, but not bad. Next time I’ll let it process a bit longer for a finer grind. Not too shabby for under a minute, though!

vitamuffin

I blended my home­made wheat flour with some whole grain spelt and made these incred­i­bly deli­cious and nutri­tion packed muffins. Jim has a rav­aging sweet tooth and we are try­ing to reign in, so I’m work­ing on some health­ier baked goods for him to have with his morn­ing cof­fee. These whole grain beau­ties were spiked with cin­na­mon and speck­led with flax seeds, pump­kin seeds and sun­flower seeds and a nice help­ing of chopped semi­sweet choco­late to make them taste more dev­il­ish than they really are.

Have you noticed the inter­net buzz sur­round­ing kale chips lately? Every­where I turn lately, it’s like kale chips here, kale chips there! Leave it to Amer­i­cans to take some­thing healthy and grease the nutri­ents out of it. Being from Min­nesota, the land of every­thing fried on a stick, this appealed to my inner grease-eater.

kalechips

I took about half of a bunch of kale, rinsed, and then ripped off the leaves into fairly evenly sized chunks. Lightly coated with some olive oil and a sprin­kle of sea salt, they were placed on a parch­ment cov­ered bak­ing sheet, in a sin­gle layer, and baked at 375 until crispy– about 12 min­utes. We were a house divided. I liked them and Jim made child­ish faces and looked at me like I was insane. They were but­tery and melted on my tongue. Greasy, salty good­ness that I could pre­tend was healthy. It’s kale, after all! While I did enjoy them, it felt like sac­ri­lege and I will prob­a­bly stick to the steamed or sauteed vari­eties going forward.

plum butter

This week­end I did some more can­ning. I’ve become a full-fledged addict! At work, my co-workers keep call­ing me “Smuck­ers”. “Whoa there, Smuck­ers, set­tle down. You’re a lit­tle too excited about jam­ming!” I can’t help it, I have the itch and I have to scratch it. Speak­ing of can­ning, Erin, check your email so I can send you your Rainier jam!

Last week I picked up a new book on pre­serves and can­ning– Well Pre­served. I couldn’t wait to try it, so this week­end I made Kiwi Jam (which was awe­some and I failed to pho­to­graph before can­ning. I will take pic­tures when we open the first jar!) as well as Plum But­ter. Pic­tured above, the Plum But­ter was intrigu­ing. I have had apple but­ter and pear but­ter before, but never plum. I was lucky to come across some plums that had a vibrantly col­ored flesh, rather than the beige-colored flesh you find in some plums. The result­ing but­ter is intox­i­cat­ing. I’ve never quite tasted any­thing like it. This book is full of recipes, from more tra­di­tional ones to some more off-the-wall com­bos (Banana Date Chut­ney? Yes, please!) and I highly rec­om­mend it.

After a long day of can­ning, we had a sim­ple meal, cooked up by Jim.

kielbasa

Tofurky kiel­basa sauteed with onions, gar­lic roasted brus­sels and a some fresh straw­ber­ries. We’re try­ing to fin­ish off our faux meat build up in the fridge to focus on more whole foods… but you’ve gotta make time for kielbasa.

 

0 Responses to random bits and bites

  1. Nora says:

    I didn’t know Vita­Mixes could make flour! That’s crazy amazing!

  2. Vegetation says:

    Mmm I am lov­ing those muffins! I have a rag­ing sweet tooth too :(

    And I’m dying to find kale so I can try kale chips! I’ve made them with sil­ver­beet (yes, I tried to tell myself they were healthy, alas I did not quite believe myself!).

  3. Andrea says:

    The vita­mix looks pretty great. It must be won­der­ful to make baked goods with fresh flour — I imag­ine they are nat­u­rally, sub­tly sweeter, too. And the jam sounds so deli­cious. It’s been a long time since I did any can­ning. I’ll have to look for that book.

  4. tahinitoo says:

    Isn’t mak­ing flour in Edgar the best? I am glad your muffins turned out well; I have not used the flour I made yet.

    Smuck­ers! I love that nickname!!!

  5. Josiane says:

    Thanks for report­ing on your exper­i­men­ta­tion with flour-making in the Vita-Mix. Sounds like it worked great!
    Your plum but­ter looks absolutely scrump­tious! I have no trou­ble believ­ing it was intox­i­cat­ing. You’re about to give me a seri­ous can­ning itch!

  6. Courtney says:

    Kiwi jam?! That sounds awe­some! It must be a bril­liant vibrant green, no?

    Tehehehe…I always have to have my pickle on a stick at the state fair (although it is NOT fried). Why not put things on a stick and fry them…you betcha’ it’ll taste good :-)

    Court­ney

    • Kris says:

      In my pre-vegan days, my weak­ness was the deep fried candy bar. What is more state fairish than a snick­ers on a stick, coated in fun­nel cake bat­ter and fried? It’s priceless.

  7. Sandy says:

    whoa! deep fried candy bar? oh my!!

    Loved the kale!! It had the per­fect blend of oil and salt, plus crunch.

    • Kris says:

      I’m glad you liked the kale.

      Yeah, the deep fried candy bar was basi­cally like a donut with a gooey, warm candy bar in the mid­dle. That would be an awe­some addi­tion at Food Fight, eh? ;)

  8. Jojo says:

    I am still so jeal­ous of your vita mix — I might ask my boy to marry me just so I can get one as a wed­ding gift!!

  9. shellyfish says:

    Oh I dream of own­ing a Vita Mix…there is so much I would love to make with one. My poor blender is going to konk out on me because some­times I make it pre­tend it’s a vm.
    Your plate has my mouth watering!

  10. jumbleberryjam says:

    Ahhh, the won­ders of Vita Mix! One day. One day…

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