Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Wholesome sweeteners giveaway from Azure Standard

Azure Almanac is giving away all these wholesome sweeteners to one lucky winner. Agave nectar is the only one I have tried and I love it. Azure Standard has tons of wholesome sweeteners to choose from. This company is fairly new to me. I just recently received their catalog in the mail. I'm making my list of things to buy and I think the organic blue agave cinnamon flavored will be on the list. Jump on over to Azure Almanac and enter to for a chance to win.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Blue Cheese Tuna Salad

A few weeks ago I was shopping at Whole Foods and bought some pasta salad off of their buffet. It was the best pasta salad I had in a long time. There was tuna, olives, red onions and blue cheese in it. It was so yummy I decided to try and recreate it at home. I didn't have any olives to add so carrots it was. You can add grape tomatoes, cucumber, zucchini or what ever you have on hand. Blue cheese crumbles would be good as well. The ideas are endless.

Blue Cheese Tuna Salad:

2 cups cooked pasta
1 can tuna, drained
1/4 cup red peppers, chopped
1/8 cup diced onions
1/4 cup sliced carrots
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup blue cheese dressing
1 Tbsp. parsley
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper

Slice your carrots. I used 3 baby carrots and sliced them so they would be round. Any way would work.

In medium sauce pan boil water. Add some salt or a little oil so pasta doesn't stick. Add pasta and carrots. Cook according to package.

In large bowl mix red peppers, onions, tuna, olive oil, blue cheese, parsley, salt and pepper. When pasta and carrots are tender drain and let cool. Pour pasta and carrots in large bowl and stir until all noodles are covered. Store in airtight container in refrigerator. You can serve this hot or cold. I like it cold better.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

3 Eyes = Yummy Potatoes

Spring is here and time to plant potatoes.

My grand mother and great grand father taught me a lot about gardening and preserving. When to plant and how to plant. My grand mother (a.k.a. Nana) taught me how to plant potatoes. When buying seed potatoes you want to get the ones with the most "eyes". These are the sprouts that come out of the potato. The eyes will sprout and grow up through the dirt. If your potato has 6 eyes cut them so you have 3 eyes each. Making two potatoes from one.

Dig a hole approx. 6 inches deep and place you potato cut side down. Cover your hole with plenty of dirt, piling it up like a hill. I usually have mine approx. 6 inches tall. Potatoes take a long time to grow so be patient. They are working hard underground to make you some yummy food. If you plant your potatoes soon, they should be ready for harvest around August. If you want little potatoes dig a few up earlier.

This might sound crazy to some, but digging in the dirt can be relaxing and fun. I had my two little nieces outside with me today planting potatoes, onions and radishes. We had a great time placing the seedlings in the dirt. They enjoyed seeing the rows of white and red onions. "It's a pattern" they said. I can't wait to see the expressions on their little faces when they get to pick their rewards.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

How do you go GREEN?

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!

Going green is pretty easy if you just get a little creative. There are so many ways you can help the earth, put some green in your wallet, or eat more greens. Laura at Heavenly Homemakers has some wonderful ideas on going green.

One of my favorite ways of going green is gardening. I love this time of year. The flowers are starting to pop up from their long winter nap. The trees are starting to come alive. The earth is ready for me to start planting.

Usually on St. Patrick's Day I have my potatoes planted and a few onions and broccoli plants. This year I'm not ready at all. My brother in-law is going to bring my tiller back today so I can get out in the garden. It is suppose to be 70 degrees here today in Virginia. Hooray for spring!

This summer I plan to grow as much vegetables as possible to preserve for the winter. I hope to have enough to last me until next summer. My garden spot is not very big, but it is only two of us in this house. I grow everything in my garden organically. All the chemicals and fertilizers are not good for the earth or your bodies. Going back to the basics the way God intended us to live. I use the chicken poop as my fertilizer. Every time I clean out their house I just dump it into the garden and I'll work it in with the tiller. Lady bugs are a great way to keep the bugs away. They eat little larva before the larva can eat your vegetables. Bees are not my favorite creatures but they do help pollinate your plants. Just don't make them mad!

As for my fruit trees, I have not found a organic spray for my fruit trees yet. Last year the worms ate up my peaches. Any suggestions?

Buy fresh, Buy local is another way to go green. Check out your local farmer's markets. When you buy local you are helping the local farmers. You are also getting produce that has ripened on the vine and not in a truck that has traveled across the country. If you are looking for organic produce, just ask. Ask the farmer if they use pesticides. The more demand for organic the lower the prices are going to go. Use your green money to make a difference.

How do you go GREEN?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Coconut Oil Pan Fryed Flounder

I just recently started using coconut oil in my cooking. After researching the health advantages of coconut oil, I wish I would have switched sooner. Coconut oil helps maintain cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart disease and weight loss plus many others benefits. You can buy coconut oil that taste like coconut or ones that don't. I prefer the oil that taste like coconut. I love my coconuts. Tropical Traditions is where I buy my coconut oil. They ship fast and pretty reasonable in price.

Here is my recipe for Coconut oil pan fryed flounder:

2lbs. flounder
1 1/2 cups bread crumbs
3 Tbsp. old bay seasoning
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 eggs
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
6 Tbsp. coconut oil (for frying)

Mix lemon juice and eggs in small bowl. Mix bread crumbs, old bay seasoning, onion powder, sea salt and garlic powder in medium size bowl. Dip flounder in egg mixture then into bread crumb mixture. Put 2 Tbsp. coconut oil in large skillet and turn heat on medium temp. When oil melts put fish in skillet and cook 3-4 minutes on each side. You will have to add coconut oil each time you fry a new skillet full of fish. The fish like coconut oil too and soak it up.

Do you have any favorite coconut oil recipes? Please do share!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Just Eat Organic

Going Green and helping the plant means eating Organic. There are so many chemicals and pesticides in our everyday supermarket foods. Make the switch today and buy Organic. Tell the world that you want better food for your family. Hop on over to Stoneyfield's video on "Just Eat Organic". I was dancing in my seat watching this video.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Starbucks WOW'd Me!!!

Not real sure is "WOW'd" is a word, but Starbucks WOW'd me the other day. I had received a post card in the mail for a FREE drink. I went in to my local Starbucks and ordered a vinti caramel frappuccino. After 4 or 5 people behind me received their drinks I asked the lady if she had my order, she replied no. The manager came over and made my drink. He handed me my frappuccino and a coupon for another FREE drink. I only wish I would have gotten his name. Thanks Starbucks Manager.

If you have a Starbucks card, register it here to get your free drink. If you don't have a Starbucks card, get one for only 450 Swagbucks.