Wild Tasty Asparagus

For those of us who love asparagus hunting, the season is here!

Last year was my first experience asparagus hunting.  I remember slowly driving down country roads as my soon to be husband spotted wild asparagus growing in tall grasses, alongside fences and under trees.  I was shocked that he could spot anything as it all looked the same to me, green grass and weeds, but eventually with some help from him, I was able to start spotting asparagus as well.  It became a treasure hunt for us and after several hours of searching, we took our prized asparagus home and cooked up a tasty feast.

Since we are still limited as to what we can do with the COVID 19, and not wanting to spend our time in stories but prefer to be out in nature, asparagus hunting as brought some tasty excitement back into our lives.

Wild Foods

On a recent hiking trip through the forest, I came across a patch of wild blackberries.  They provided me with a tasty afternoon snack.  It’s not the first time I have eaten berries off the bush.

Someone once asked me if I was worried about animals peeing on them.  Although possible, I usually eat the berries off the top of the bush, so if a deer had urinated on them, it would have to have been really tall.  Anyway, that question led me to think about how we are so conditioned to buying food in plastic wrap and under florescent lighting that we don’t think about all the chemicals, pesticides and hormones that are in what we perceive as “safe foods”.

What happened to eating raw and wild?

So far this year, I have found and eaten wild asparagus, raspberries and mushrooms.  I have also snacked on a local plum tree.  When living in Florida, I picked and ate a pineapple that was growing alongside a swimming pool.  The pineapple was warm, full of flavor, and tasted like sunshine.

Animal pee over pesticides?  I will continue to snack on natures goodies any day!

Humane Cuisine

Does it matter to you where your food comes from? Do you prefer local produce over food that has to be shipped from a distance?  Does the quality of life of the animal you eat matter?

Farmers markets are again popular selling produce that is organic in nature.  Grocery stores give the choice of grass-fed beef and cage free eggs.  People no longer want animals that are pumped full of antibiotics or hormones, yet many people are still unaware of the effects of veal farming.

Having grown up in the Midwest, I have witnessed the impact on baby calves.  Immediately upon birth, they calf is taken away from its mother and placed in a tiny confined shelter where it has no space to move. it suffers a daily life of confinement beyond what any living being should experience.  I struggle to understand how ethically as a nation we can continue to allow inhumane farming practices to continue.  As a caring person who respects and values all living beings, I struggle to understand why anyone would choose to eat an animal that suffered to end up on their plate.  I also question why inhumane animal practices have not been banned in the United States.

I’m not against people eating meat, but I believe that all animals deserve to live the best life possible, to have space to roam, fresh air to breathe and clean natural foods to eat.

I spent 12 years living in England where Mad Cows Disease developed due to cattle and young calves being fed meat and bone meal that contained the remains of other cattle.  I remember watching the news reporting people dying in hospitals and thousands of cows being burned in large bonfires.  The results of tampering with what should have been a cow’s natural diet was catastrophic ending in death of both people and animals.

As a health-conscious person who cares about what you eat, where your food comes from, and what goes in it, please think about the animals and what kind of life they lived when you purchase your meat whether it’s from a grocery store or fast food chain.  Confinement, poor nutrition and trauma result in bad energy, and then the meat is consumed, possibly ending with poor health.

We are what we eat…

 

 

 

Crazy Good Carob

I have been a chocolate connoisseur for most of my life, starting at an early age with milk chocolate.  My appetite gradually increased to all forms and varieties of chocolate including; chocolate covered donuts (I had a cat that loved them too!) cookies, pies, cakes, and candies. Ok, I was a chocolate addict.

When I moved to England, I was spoiled by the variety of wonderful English, Belgium, and French chocolate pastries and candies, and for years I consumed truckloads of deliciously smooth, velvety chocolate until one day after my excess consumption, I developed a severe migraine.  This was the beginning of my food allergies.  Within a short period of time, I could no longer eat chocolate, cheese, red wine, sugar or coffee without suffering the consequences.  People would often say they would rather die than give up their chocolate or coffee.  Believe me, you would survive.

I eventually found the answer to my chocolate prayers.  Carob is a healthy alternative to chocolate with a variety of reported health benefits including boosting the immune system, aids in digestion, and is also a powerful antioxidant.  Carob contains twice the amount of calcium that cocoa has, is full of vitamins and minerals including A, B-2, B-3, B-6, manganese, potassium, zinc and selenium and is high in protein, pectin, and fiber  The best part is that Carob is caffeine free, no more migraines!

I now make my own carob bars and candies.  One of my old favorites is chocolate (carob) stars that remind me of Christmas time, but any kind of candy mold will work. Below is a recipe for a chunky nut carob bar.

Karolee’s Carob

(makes a small batch)

1/2 cup organic coconut oil (heat in microwave)

1/4 cup Bob’s Roasted Red Mill Carob powder

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 cup cashews (or nuts of your choice)

1/2 cup Dandies plain or pumpkin marshmallows

Mix together and pour into molds or large ice cube trays and freeze.

This recipe can be altered by adding more or less of any ingredients including adding orange or mint oils.  I eat the candy right out of the freezer as sometimes the carob melts in your hand.