Chia seeds: Banned into obscurity, but back and more popular than ever

Chia seeds. In recent years we find them in smoothies, in breads, crackers, puddings, granola, cereal, even in our juices and drinks. So how did chia migrate from the “fur” on our chia pets to our daily menu? Chia, salvia hispanica, was a traditional food crop of the Aztecs, and grows native in Mexico and…

Bark Is Food Too: Feeding Your Inner Porcupine

Mountains, Falcons, and Bark For Breakfast Once when I was a young, I read a book about a boy around my age who survived in the New York wilderness through an entire winter.  The book, My side of the mountain, inspired me.  At the time, I thought I might go out and live my own…

Banana flower salad: another way to eat banana

Up until a few weeks ago, I had never heard of banana flower salad. I have always enjoyed bananas, but I had never heard of eating a banana flower at all. At a specialty produce store I saw the banana flowers and decided to buy them and figure out what to do with them when…

Smoothies: Drinking Your Way to Diversity (Part 2)

Many things come to mind when we think of smoothies. Some people think of a breakfast drink, others think of dessert. Some think of a creamy yogurt/milk drink, others think of blended frozen fruits. A smoothie is all these things and the perfect drink to mix up lots of different fruits, vegetables, herbs, nuts, seeds…

The Weekend Variety: Black Walnut (Juglans nigra)

This week’s Weekend Variety post is on the stately Juglans nigra, otherwise known as the black walnut.  Not a finicky tree, black walnuts grow well wherever they plant themselves.  In the late summer to early fall, the walnuts bear and then drop their round green fruits.  The husk of the fruit covers a black sponge…

Teff (Eragrostis tef): An Alternative Grain

Teff is an annual grass that is native to Ethiopia and Eritrea. Sometimes called lovegrass, teff is the smallest grain, and it is gluten free. It is highly nutritious, and according to the whole grains council, it can be grown in a wide range of climates where many other grains can not. Teff is a…

Special Diets: What’s missing from our list?

    You may have noticed that there are a few common food items that are missing from from our 1000 foods list. Undoubtedly there will be common foods that will never make it to your list either. It’s a new year, and lots of people are following special diets by choice to improve their…

Tsukemono- a Japanese pickling adventure

Tsukemono, Japanese pickled foods, are served with most traditional Japanese meals along with rice and miso soup. They serve many purposes. They are used as a garnish, for palate cleansing, as a relish and as a digestive. Several different types of tsukemono exist. Probably the most common type is the simple salt pickle, shiozuke. Shiozuke…

Grains: There are more options than you may think

Ten years ago we discovered that both my husband and daughter cannot eat wheat or any of the grains with gluten. We were at a loss. Many of the foods in our pantry were processed and most of the things in our cupboard had gluten. Soups, noodles, crackers, cereal, condiments all had gluten.We had a…

The Weekend Variety: Daikon

Enter the Daikon (Raphanus sativa): It’s still winter outside and, because of this, I decided to write our very first Weekend Variety post on daikon.  This radish, one of our favorite vegetables, stores great in winter.   They stay so well that some dub them the “icicle radish” or the “winter radish.”  But not even…