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Eating Outside the Industrial Box
Raita is a traditional condiment of South Asian cuisine that is eaten with spicy dishes to cool the palate.
Having eaten raita many times in Indian restaurants alongside spicy entrees, I decided it would be the perfect complement to my Turkey Tikka Masala for my Thanksgiving Dinner.
I was wondering what to make for Thanksgiving dinner, then a recipe for Turkey Tikka Masala arrived in my email.
I have to say, in the end this turned out to be a pretty spectacular dish.
It has layers of flavor with a spicy tomato cream sauce over marinated turkey. You could just make the marinated turkey part and in the bits of turkey and you would love it.
Earlier this month I wrote we were going to have A Different Thanksgiving Dinner this year and it certainly was! Wow! It was a total surprise!
We are away from home up in the Lost Coast of Northern California, in a very tiny town right on the ocean. The beach is actually right down the street. In fact I can hear the waves crashing as I write this. We can walk to the beach. The problem is to walk back up the very very steep hill.
We thought there would be a farmer’s market, as usual, on Tuesday and we would put together our Thanksgiving dinner from what we found there, but it was closed now for the year due to the weather.
I didn’t know what to do.
But then, as I was working, suddenly a recipe for Turkey Tikka Masala arrived in my email inbox, as way to use leftover turkey. Turkey Tikka Masala! We love chicken tikka masala, so I thought, why not? Here’s a recipe. The recipe came right to me.
We set out on the 30-minute drive to the nearest food shopping, and as we were driving I considered what to serve with it that would be in the style of Indian food…
Mise en place is something I’ve been wanting to write about for a while but hadn’t gotten around to it. But there are just some recipes—such as Turkey Tikka Masala that just require mise en place because of the speed or complexity of preparation.
Mise en place (or “mise” for short) is a French culinary term that means “to put in place” or “everything in it’s place.’
It is a procedure generally used in professional kitchens that preps and organizes the ingredients a cook will require to make the menu items that are expected to be prepared during that shift.
A professional cook works very quickly. He or she cannot stop and chop the onions, for example. So mise lays out all the prepped ingredients in an organized way (prepped and measured and in order) to the actual assembly and cooking of the dish is as efficient as possible.
Larry and I love bread but have struggled for years between the desire to eat it and the effect ordinary white bread has on our blood sugar and weight.
When I say “white bread” I’m not limiting this reference to Wonder Bread. So many delicious specialty breads—including our famous local San Francisco Sourdough and all the artisan breads now available—are made from the standard white flour. It may be bleached or unbleached, organic or not, but all grains ground to the consistency of flour elevate blood sugar See Why We Need to Eat Whole Food That is Really Whole for the science on this.
Even bread made with whole wheat flour will elevate our blood sugar because even though all the parts of the wheat are there, they are still ground into flour. It’s the changing of the wholeness of the grain into a powder that makes the difference.
But because you can’t make a sandwich without bread (yes, I know, lettuce leaves, but that’s just not the same), we have been continuously looking for a bread made with actual whole grains.
And we finally found one.
Larry and I are housesitting in a remote area of Norther California called “The Lost Coast” because it is so rugged they couldn’t build a highway here.
Having settled in late in the day on Saturday, on Sunday we went into Garberville to find out what was available for supplies.
There are half a dozen restaurants in Garberville, but at that moment on a Sunday, in the year of covid, only one was open. And it turned out to be the perfect restaurant for us, of course.
Today—Thanksgiving Day—Larry and I would like to invite each of you to join us around our table as we give thanks to the Earth for all the food it provides to us each and every day of the year…
Since the holidays are coming up, I want to give you some ways to make gravy without gluten and using whole foods as thickeners.
I love gravy. But usually, it’s made with gluten and a lot of fat.
These methods will not only give you great gravy for holiday meals, but you can thicken soups and eat gravy every day if you want because the ingredients are good for you. I love to make any of these gravies and add mushrooms and put the gravy over mashed potatoes. Yum, yum, yum.
Since Thanksgiving is coming up, I thought I would share with you my favorite Thanksgiving recipe.
This is my #1 favorite childhood family recipe. It’s mashed potatoes with ingredients you would add to potato salad: hard-boiled eggs, raw onions, fresh parsley, and vinegar. So it eats like mashed potatoes, but tastes like potato salad. I just looked this up online for the first time and I see there are other recipes for mashed potato salad that use mayonnaise and mustard and pickles, but my recipe is simpler. And it’s authentic to my family.
This blog is about eating “whole food” that is really whole and about creating a style of wholefood cuisine that comes from the inherent flavors and qualities of the foods themselves, rather than trying to make familiar industrial-style foods from whole ingredients.
To eat in this manner is not only enjoyable, it also benefits health and the environment.
Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, our industrial food supply is crumbling fast. And we still need to eat. I’ll show you how.