Saturday, March 20, 2010

Grow Your Own Food

It's spring in Houston which is quite wonderful.  Actually, we only have two seasons here:  nice and hell.  The nice months are wonderful (October to May) and summer is just something we try to survive.  After a fairly stressful winter- it was cold and the construction workers trampled everything in our entire yard- I am back in the garden.  We have started our seeds, got the beds rebuilt and turned, the compost is recomposing and we are almost ready to get our garden on!

I have been studying the gardening patterns of Houston and I am excited about my new gardening calendar from Houston Grows.

Pretty soon, we will have the following vegetables:  leeks, beets, green onions, lettuce, arugula, turnips, radishes, garlic, peppers, heirloom yellow tomatoes, cabbage, broccoli,  collard greens, carrots and more!

I'll update you with pics of my new babies and recipes!  I hope you find time and a little bit of space to start your own garden.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Last Organic Outpost

I had the most interesting adventure the other day.  I visited a local urban farm and selected my hand picked vegetables for the week!  The Last Organic Outpost is a not-for-profit urban farm project in Houston's Fifth Ward (Emile Community Farm) and Third Ward (Live Oak Outpost).   The project was started in 1999 as Joe's personal project and bloomed into a not-for-profit local initiative to teach Houstonians about farming and to provide local, fresh produce to an under served urban area.  Now the Last Organic Outpost hosts dinners, movie nights, cooking, agricultural, building and irrigation classes.  The project assists with local food pantries and schools.
Marcella and Farmer Joe run the farms and are super friendly hosts.  I arrived at the farm and Marcella promptly introduced herself and everyone else there, told me the history of the project and gave me a tour of the farm. Marcella hand picked my vegetables and invited me to all the upcoming events.  She introduced to several new vegetables and gave me some handy gardening tips.  I left with two Huge bags of produce that included:  kale, kohlrabi, mixed salad greens, romaine lettuce, beets, and onions.  Regrettably, I did not have my camera with me, so the photos are from the Last Organic Outpost website.
Since I have never had kohlrabi (German turnip) before, I followed Marcella's advice for cooking this delicious root vegetable.  I stir fried the tops and the vegetable (which must be peeled) in a little bit of Earth Balance butter and served it up.  It was a new adventure and it was delicious!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Babette's Feast

This is a beautiful and simple film based on a book by Danish author Isak Dinesen.  It is a Dutch film about a cook/servant who wins the lottery and treats her homeowners and friends to a wonderful home cooked meal.  It shows that preparing food, sharing a meal and sharing company are love.

This trailer is sort of old, but this discussion by New York Times critic A.O. Scott is a fantastic dissection of the film.  So, I hope you enjoy this film!  Food is love.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

It's Saturday, it's sunny and it's time for a mostly silly movie. I LOVED this film as a child and appreciate it even more as an adult. I like it so much because I have a massive sweet tooth. I like the old school version with Gene Wilder. Johnny Depp did an amazing job in Tim Burton's version, but I like the innocence of the original film.  Whenever I watch this movie, I leave with a craving for some yummy dessert and I'm singing the songs.  Enjoy!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Food, Inc.

Yeah, Food, Inc. has arrived at our house! Food, Inc. reveals surprising—and often shocking truths—about what we eat, how it's produced, who we have become as a nation and where we are going from here. We're going to watch it tonight and it's just in time for the Oscars! This film is nominated for Best Documentary Feature. I'll let you know how it is. If you want to find out more about the subject and cause, check out the website Food, Inc. Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Eat Drink Man Woman

I love this movie! It's about a Chinese family and the patriarch who is a famous chef. The family shares its meals together, which leads to some bonding as well as some interesting conflicts. Overall, it shows how food and especially meals, bring people together. When I was in Ecuador and Mexican, we ate all our meals huddled over a fire. Other cultures sit in a circle or around a large circular table and eating together is an daily ritual. I am thankful that when I was growing up, we ate breakfast and dinner together at the table, with no TVs or telephone. It is a great way to connect daily. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Super Size Me

This movie is interesting, educational, funny, scary and overall important to watch. We saw this movie a few years ago. I thought we were doing pretty well with our nutrition, but it definitely motivated me to do better. Enjoy this movie with a healthy snack. Remember, if you're going to eat junk food, make it yourself!

If you want to watch the entire movie, just click on the link below to stream it via youtube.

Monday, March 1, 2010

It's Movie Week!

We survived Eating In Week and overall it was a good experience.  We saved some money and tried some new recipes.  We have lots of leftovers, so we'll still be eating in a lot this week.  I have lunch date at home with the hubby today.

Okay, now on to the most important TV night of the year for me- The Oscars!  I love movies and I love to watch the entire event.  So, in honor of the big event this weekend, I am featuring food movies this week.  If you haven't seen any of these films, considering adding them to your queue.  Some of them will make you hungry or motivated and some will make you want to improve the world of eating.

To start of the week, we watched Julie and Julia over the weekend.  It was fun to watch a fellow blogger share her food world and Meryl Streep's Julia Childs was incredible.  It made me hungry, but not for butter and duck!  So, here's a preview and please enjoy some movies this week.