Last February I took pictures around the kitchen, intending to write a blog post. I took more pictures in March and then April, and then somewhere along the line I never ended up posting them. We spend much time in the kitchen, it’s fun to share snippets of our time spent there. I enjoyed looking back at these and seeing that many of these pictures very well could have been taken this year, since so many of the same foods can still be found at our table. We’re still loving baked sweet potatoes around here. Mushrooms, kale, onions, and ginger are still regularly on the grocery list. And we’re still washing heads of lettuce, breaking them up into small bits (so that big pieces don’t get dressing all over his beard, Jeff says) and are crazy about our fresh salads.
We’re bringing in eggs from our chickens once more. Soon chives and watercress will be popping up in the garden and Bracken will be so happy to be harvesting them again (and we’ll be so happy to be adding them to our meals.) I love to see the ways that Bracken enjoys helping in the kitchen. Cutting up chives with scissors is a favorite. Scooping out spaghetti squash is another. In the winter months, it’s guaranteed that we’re baking winter squash constantly because Bracken can eat his weight in the stuff. We always add coconut oil to it when we serve it up and sometimes Jeff adds eggs to some squash and fries it up to make “squash pancakes”, basically just a good way to get more nourishment into Bracken while he’s eating so much of it.
That bowl of sprouts looks delicious to me and I’m sorry to say we’ve fallen off the bandwagon with that. It seems that every winter we are reminded of sprouts again, when we’re especially craving raw foods. That picture of sauerkraut also reminds me that we just finished up our last jar of sauerkraut and need to get into our fermentation groove again. We used to be sure to always have more fermenting so we would never run out, but these days we seem to make more once we’ve already run out and are in need of some pronto. There is no “pronto” with sauerkraut around here, though, and we must wait patiently, so it’s fermented to perfection. Fermented foods are an important part of every meal around here, with sauerkraut being our very favorite.
I’ve used marrow bones to make bone broth before, but I tried out a recipe last winter from The Paleo Approach Cookbook– baking the marrow bones. After you bake them, you scoop out the nutritious marrow from the inside to use for a spread. We all liked it, but marrow bones are expensive, which makes it an occasional treat. I make a batch of broth once a week in the crock pot. Usually I buy regular beef bones to make broth because they are the most affordable and the ones we get from a local butcher make a very good broth.
We’re all loving these sardines. Have I written about them here before? I think I have. We make a point to not eat much out of a can, but these sardines are an exception (along with coconut milk.) (I should add that the inside lining is BPA free, which is something I always check for.) You can add them to a salad for an instant meal, but what I love most of all is how nutrient dense they are. Oh, and I guess I should explain that last picture. When I chop vegetables, instead of putting the ends in the compost pile, I boil them to feed to the chickens and ducks. They would take awhile to decompose in the compost pile, but it makes good food for the animals and they are much more efficient composters. (I should add that I left that celery in the fridge too long and ended up cutting off way more than I normally would. But, it fed the animals, so nothing went to waste.)
So, there are some snippets from our last year’s kitchen.
What staples are in your kitchen? What do you find yourself making again and again? What would you like to make more of?