Plentiful Plants

Daily eats of a Torontonian student

Kawartha Ecological Growers CSA Love July 24, 2009

So before getting on with the food of the day, I have to give a major shout-out to Kat of Kat eats local in Toronto. You see, last Friday I was in a hurry to get to the registrar’s office before they closed, but on the way I passed by a table set up behind Hart House, full of veggies, with a crowd of people around it, and a big price list posted. I heard snippets of conversations that included “you can get either a large share of a small share”, “I have some extras of those you can buy”, “those are reserved for members”, etc.   It sounded like a CSA to me, and I was very intrigued, but like I said, in a hurry so I didn’t stop to investigate, though I had every intention of going back to check it out this week.

Meanwhile, I had left a comment to Kat that I was jealous of her Plan B CSA deliveries (deliveries are virtually impossible in my apartment building and their depots are not at all conveniently located or timed for me). Saturday morning she suggested I check our Kawartha Ecological Growers since they had different pick-up locations. Imagine my delight when I discovered they were the ones at Hart House! So this afternoon I very happily headed back to Hart House to hand over a check and pickup my very first share of goodies. I filled up my bag with beets, spinach, mixed basil, red leaf lettuce, cucumber, broccoli, peas, and raspberries. All organic (or close to organic but not certified), local, and BEAUTIFUL!

2009_07_24_csa

Anyways, on the the food. For breakfast I dug in the fridge for the last of the greens and produced a fabulous chocolate milkshake concoction 🙂 In the mix is Chocolate Spirutein (candy, again), kale, collards, spinach, wheatgrass ice cubes, chia seeds, and a banana. And once again and brought most to work, but enjoyed a little at home with blueberries (chocolate covered blueberries = yum).

2009_07_24_monster

For lunch I fixed up a fabulous salad with romaine, zucchini, yellow pepper, carrot, dulse, pineapple salsa, avocado, and Marti cheese.

2009_07_24_lunch

After work I headed to Simply Bulk to stock up on a few items, and saw they had Peanut Butter Cookie Larabars, so I pounced. I got to Hart House early for the CSA, so I enjoyed a bar and a book in the courtyard of University College while I waited. OMG, this flavour is so GOOD! It seriously tasted just like a PB cookie.

2009_07_24_larabar

I also stopped to enjoy the flowers outside of Trinity College.

2009_07_24_trinity

And finally, for a very late dinner I did some space clearing in the fridge for my CSA goodies. I fixed up a salad of romaine, zuke, orange pepper, and snow peas tossed with sesame oil and lemon juice. And alongside that I steamed (definitely steamed…) the last of my kabocha, with tomato paste and a peach for dessert. I think the kabocha monster is in need of a dentist, but that’s just my opinion.

2009_07_24_dinner

Advertisements
 

It Started Out Raw July 23, 2009

Breakfast this morning was a funny little green monster.  I’m not entirely sure I liked it.  I split it into two parts because I wasn’t very hungry when I woke up, and the second part had a really weird texture when I pulled it out.  It contained kale, frozen grapes, wheat grass ice cubes, chia seeds, and a handful of dates and almonds.  I think the lesson is almond milk > whole almonds and banana > dates.

2009_07_23_monster

My lunch was a wonderful salad, that I luckily packed into a container with a domed lid, because I definitely needed to extra room to fit everything in.  It contained zucchini, carrot, yellow pepper, snow peas, avocado, and Marti cheese.

2009_07_23_lunch

And later I snacked on a bunch if super ripe and delicious plums and blueberries.

2009_07_23_fruit

Then dinner is what started out raw.  I blended up a very tasty soup using king oyster mushrooms, a hunk of leek, kabocha, a Kallo no salt veggie stock cube, salt, and pepper.  Garnished with some delightful Live Food Bar Nacho Chips.  The soup tasted good, but then I quickly learned something.  If you eat kabocha raw, it kinda feels like the back of your thoat is swelling up and gets really scratchy.  So I quickly stopped, and poured the soup in a pan to cook for a bit.  At this point I was paranoid, so I left it on the stove for longer than it probably needed and ended up with a very tasty kabocha mash due to the amount of water that had boiled off.  But I happy ate it without feeling like I was going to suffocate 🙂  I also enjoyed a few more nachos (and lots of water to get rid of the icky throat feeling) while waiting for the soup to cook.

2009_07_23_soup

 

What you do you mean tonight? July 22, 2009

This post is either super late or super early.  Yesterday (this?) afternoon I was at work and my cubicle mate comes in, sits down, gives me a pouty face and says “Spadina tonight.”  So I just home from work at 5am.  The annoying bit is that we went on a weeknight because what we were doing should only have taken a 1-2 hours (you get more time on the weekend when the subways don’t start till 9am), but because other people were working in the same area, removing covers from things we had to inspect, we had to wait for them to move before proceding several times and weren’t able to finish.  So we”l have to go back another night.

Anyways yesterday’s breakfast was a tasty little monster containing chia seeds, kale, peach, and strawberries.  And I made a double batch to take the extra to work for an afternoon snack.

2009_07_21_monster

Lunch was a simply delightful salad of zucchini, carrot, and yellow pepper topped with raw mole from the freezer.

2009_07_21_lunch

Pre evening nap I had an english muffin with tahini and raspberry jam.

2009_07_21_bread

And I finished off the super ripe and delicious pineapple.  I’ve gotten a several comments about how good this pineapple looks, and it is indeed perhaps the best pineapple I’ve ever tasted.  But I can’t even give any tips on how to choose a good one, because I bought this off of the mark down rack, and it was already cut in half (for $1) so I see the amazing deep yellow colour before buying it.  There is a chance it was organic though, given the store it came from, but there was no sticker on it besides the printed price tag on the plastic wrap.

2009_07_21_pineapple

Dinner part 2, before heading to work was some kabocha fries dipped in tomato paste and a scoop of my roomie’s heavenly homemade leek and potato soup.

2009_07_21_kabocha

And now I’m debating between going to work extra early (ie when the subway opens in 1/2 an hour) and leaving when I get tired, or sleeping and going in the afternoon.  However, I’m getting more and more tired as I type this so I’ll probably take the latter route.  I do think sthe rest of the strawberries are going to disappear first though.

 

The Most Efficient Pitter July 20, 2009

I made a delicious green monster this morning thanks to the use of a fruit I’ve never blended before, cherries. In the process of pitting the cherries, I figured out the best tool to use to extract the pit it definitely your teeth fater cutting the cherry in half quickly, and your cheeks are the perfect storage locations for the pits so they don’t go flying everywhere. Of course you can only do this if you’re the one who will be eating the fruit, and this method probably shouldn’t be used in polite company, but you have to appreciate the tastiness factor of the food prep stage 😀 The other ingredients were collards greens, wheatgrass ice cubes, and banana.

2009_07_20_monster

For lunch I brought along an S&M salad of romaine, spinach, and zucchini dressed in mashed avocado, lime juice and salt. I threw the dulse/hemp/rosemary/raw cracker topping in a bag to prevent it from getting soggy before lunch, and it turns out I probably should have put the salt in the bag too because my salad was definitely wilted when I pulled it out to eat. I’ve done avocado and juice on lettuce before without it wilting, so I’m guessing it must have been the hygroscopic salt that caused the problem. At least it still tasted good 🙂

2009_07_20_salad

And for snacking I had some tomato, cucumber, and sweet, sweet pineapple.

2009_07_20_snack

When I got home I dipped into the date and almond stash.

2009_07_20_dates

Then I eventually got around to throwing together some dinner.  Somehow I happened on a FANTASTIC combination of flavours while creating kabocha tacos!  Into collard wraps I stuffed tomato paste, slivered leek, big slices of king oyster mushroom, steamed kabocha (sliced thinly to steam faster), and a grating of Marti cheese.  The tomato paste/kabocha/cheese combo was amazing!

2009_07_20_dinner

 

Where has the week gone? July 3, 2009

This week felt like it flew by!  First I had Wednesday off, then Thursday I left the office to do some quick work at a subway station, which meant I got home really early, then today was the normal summer hours half day!  I guess I’ll make up for it by working Saturday night (Boo!).  It’s actually not that bad, kinda fun, but it does feel like it destroys the weekend a little bit.  But then Monday is a field trip to see a bridge in Huntsville!  Aside from the freeway up to Montreal a couple of times, and one road trip to Sault St. Marie via Tobermory 10 years ago (then back via Michigan), I’ve never been to any part of Ontario north of Toronto, so to me, Algonquin Park is considered WAY up north (keep in mind that Toronto is already ~100km north of where I grew up).  You know, as opposed to WAY WAY up north by Hudson Bay where nobody lives (apparently there’s a Polar Bear Provincial Park?) or even just Thunder Bay.

Anyway, on the the eats (I just spent forever being distracted by Google Maps!)  Breakfast this morning, I used another one of those super dark plums, along with blueberries, half a banana, chia seeds, and a big handful of kale in a tasty little green monster (I brought the rest to drink at work)

2009_07_03_breakfast

I also brought part one of lunch to work with me, broccoli, cucumber and baked kabocha drizzled with Ted Reader Peach Bourbon BBQ sauce.  Delicious.

2009_07_03_lunch

When I got home I was hungry for lunch part 2, chia oatgurt with a spoonful of PB2.

2009_07_03_oatgurt

Then lunch dessert/snacks, the last two Pumpkin Pie Bites.

2009_07_03_bites

And a sweet, juicy, super-ripe peach

2009_07_03_peach

For dinner I cleaned out the fridge with a GIANT salad containing the last of the lettuce and aspargus my parents brought me, cucumber, red pepper, chives, and the leftover tomato/avocado suace from yesterday.  And I’m pleased to report the mandoline was playing nicely today.

2009_07_03_salad

And to really clean out the fridge, I also finished the kabocha and broccoli, with a bit more BBQ sauce.

2009_07_03_kabocha

 

Just say no! July 2, 2009

To recreational slicing!…but that part comes last.

It was dark and dreary when I got up this morning so my pictures aren’t so nice, but I started the day with a tasty shot of wheatgrass juice with a big squeeze of lime.

2009_07_02_wheatgrass

As well as a bowl of chia oatgurt with the leftover raw strawberry jam I made yesterday.

2009_07_02_breakfast

For lunch I brought a mini, super strength green monster (less water than usual) of kale and peach.

2009_07_02_monster

And some kabocha with ketchup.

2009_07_02_kabocha

Plus some Pumpkin Pie Bites. I had two, the rest were for sharing.

2009_07_02_bites

When I got home I got myself into trouble.  I bought a mandoline slicer yesterday, but had to go back to exchange it this afternoon because 2/3 pieces in the box were missing.  So when I brought it home today, I was excited to try it out.  I managed to do a very nice job of julienning zucchini, but then I went to far.  I was going to blend some tomatoes, but I wanted to see how well the mandoline would do slicing them.  So just for fun I started slicing.  It wasn’t particularly easy due to the thick skin and non-serrated mandoline blade, but it was working well enough.  Then I was a bit too forceful and slipped and sliced into two of my finger tips!  The ironic thing was that I was using the handguard.  A few minutes before hand, I was very slowly, feeding the last slice of zucchini through without the guard, and my roomie warned me to be careful, but it wasn’t until I switched back to using the safety device I hurt myself!  I’ll spare you picture, but let’s just say washing my hair tonight it going to be tricky, a one handed affair.

So I was starving, but I wanted to wait for the bleeding to stop before proceeding with dinner preparatations, so I started off with the Starbucks Raspberry Peach yogurt parfait that was hanging out in the fridge.

2009_07_02_yogurt

A while later I finished making my real dinner.  I came up with this in my head way before seeing Gena’s post yesterday, but it’s so tasty it deserves a shoutout, plus Guacanara is a pretty fantastic name.  I blended two tomatoes (kumatos!) and an avocado with a few sprigs each of rosemary, thyme, and sage from my window garden.  So, so good!

2009_07_02_dinner

Did anyone else notice the green/red pattern throughout the day like I just did?

 

It’s Canada Day July 1, 2009

Up Canada way
On the first day of July!

Gotta love Stompin’ Tom 🙂

I made an honest attempt at patriotic breakfast art, which slightly failed due to runny ingredients. I started with a base of Heather inspired oatgurt, which I blended with water, chia and stevia powder. Then I took a pair of scissors to a cereal box for the application of strawberry “jam”, strawberries blended with agave and chia for thickening.

2009_07_01_stencil

While both ingredients were pretty fantastic, both separately, and together, they were a bit too runny to for proper stencil application. But you can figure out what that’s supposed to be, right?

2009_07_01_breakfast

Lunch was a super tomato-y affair. Regular tomato, kumato, avocado, carrot, and pineapple salsa mixed with fresh parsley (which was amazing with bites of avocado).

2009_07_01_lunch

Then mid-afternoon I played around a bit in the kitchen and produced these tasty little Pumpkin Pie Bites.

I used:
~ 1 cup whole dates, which I chopped before processing
1/4 cup dried coconut
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 T water
~1/2 cup pumpkin seeds

I threw the first four ingredients in the food processor and chopped until combined (my dates were a bit dry, so you may not need the water). Then I formed the mixture into balls, and rolled them in the pumkpin seeds.

Pretty darned delicious, if I do say so myself. I snacked on a couple of them.

2009_07_01_pumpkin_pie_balls

For dinner I de-rawed/veganed myself for a plate of chicken baked with Peach and Bourbon BBQ sauce, baked kabocha, and steamed Europe’s Best Nature’s Balance frozen veggie mix. The kabocha received and dose of ketchup post photo-op.

2009_07_01_dinner

I used this Ted Reader’s sauce for the chicken, and it was really good, unexpectedly spicy, but good.

2009_07_01_sauce

And I’ve got some dessert waiting for me during SYTYCD, almost a repeat of yesterday, brazil nut milk blended with frozen raspberries (it was freezer clean out sort of night).  I would totally go see some fireworks, but all the displays except Ontario Place have been cancelled due to the outdoor city workers strike, so I assume Ontario Place is going to be over packed and the street car will be crazy to get home on at a reasonable hour to go to bed to get up for work tomorrow.  Though they will also have fireowkrs on Saturday night, s I might go see those.

2009_07_01_milk

PS. I’m insanely jealous of Gina right now, I was hanging out in Chapter’s today browsing through Living Raw Food ($48, seriously? that’s not what the exchange rate is these days), and if I could go to 105degrees Academy, I totally would.