YOU do! Ever tried using a turkey baster to keep the filling neat and clean (and make it quick)? Give it a whirl. Happy Holidays from Lula’s for Lunch…and More! Catering.
Folks I stumbled upon another brilliant way to get rid of stuffing (IF you have any leftover!!!) I always have it left over because it’s probably my favorite part of the meal besides gravy, and I make double the amount of stuffing to the amount of anything else I make!!
Fry up some breakfast sausage while you’re nuking your stuffing. If you would prefer, Italian sausage works beautifully as well. Sometimes Lula’s for Lunch…and More! Catering puts Italian sausage in our stuffing if I’m in that sort of mood for Thanksgiving. Lay the sausage on top of the hot stuffing and top it with a fried egg. Kind of like eggs ‘n toast but richer and BETTER!!!! This should be accompanied by a steaming hot cup of coffee and a glass of freshly squeezed orange or grapefruit juice. Just sayin’. Happy coma, Lula
These gemlike spuds are about as big as a Ping-Pong ball, but don’t let their size fool you. Purple potatoes have many times the antioxidant power of their cousins, white and yellow potatoes. Studies have found that the plant pigments that give them their lovely color, called anthocyanins, may improve memory and prevent age-related muddled thinking. Also, their high levels of folate help lower levels of the amino acid homocysteine, which can damage brain cells. Pretty good for such a tiny tater.
Did you know all potatoes originated in the Andes? Yup – that’s where they come from! Lula’s for Lunch…and More! Catering LUVS potatoes and uses them in many different dishes in EVERY color!
Celery Root, that is!! Also called Celeriac, this is a variety of celery that is cultivated for its root, not its stalks. It is NOT the root of the traditional celery stalks you keep in your fridge (you have some on hand at all times for flavoring soups and stews, as well as snacking, right?!?)
Celeriac (pictured above in Lula’s for Lunch…and More! ‘s Creamy Pear and Celeriac Soup) has a knobby, dirty, formidable looking root that you will want to peel. Because it’s starchy, in general you want to pick the smaller of the roots available to you. The end product will be sweeter. The more you cook it the sweeter it becomes. It makes a great, “different” puree when you’re looking for a base for proteins (think parsnip instead of potatoes), and it provides one of those mysterious “what’s IN this?” flavors to sauces, soups and stews. Now GET IN THAT KITCHEN and try something different!
“Artifacts and symbols associated with Halloween formed over time. Jack-O’-Lanterns are traditionally carried by guisers on All Hallows’ Eve in order to frighten evil spirits. There is a popular Irish Christian folktale associated with the jack-o’-lantern, which in folklore is said to represent a “soul who has been denied entry into both heaven and hell”:On route home after a night’s drinking, Jack encounters the Devil and tricks him into climbing a tree. A quick-thinking Jack etches the sign of the cross into the bark, thus trapping the Devil. Jack strikes a bargain that Satan can never claim his soul. After a life of sin, drink, and mendacity, Jack is refused entry to heaven when he dies. Keeping his promise, the Devil refuses to let Jack into hell and throws a live coal straight from the fires of hell at him. It was a cold night, so Jack places the coal in a hollowed out turnip to stop it from going out, since which time Jack and his lantern have been roaming looking for a place to rest.” – reprinted DIRECTLY from my favorite auto mechanic – Ernie’s Garage !
Folks, I am once again borrowing from my friend Heidi Bright, author of Thriver Soup: A Feast for Living Consciously During the Cancer Journey (click here to learn more about her book) – we share the same “happy/healthy” philosophy regarding our animal sources and Heidi is just chock FULL of information regarding food and your health!
How Nutritious are Your Eggs?
I used to buy my eggs from a discount store at a discount price. The poor hens, most likely trapped in battery cages, probably never saw sunlight or moved outside of their tiny cells. (In a 2014 report, 95% of U.S. eggs came from hens trapped in battery cages.) What a miserable existence. I found the shells overly easy to crack open. They reminded me of the egg breakage I’d read about among wild birds. These fowl are experiencing losses in breeding success due to contamination by post-1945 “residues of synthetic organic chemicals used as pesticides and in industry.”
As I learned, I moved to slightly costlier eggs.
One day my son cut his finger and bled profusely. I remembered reading that eggshell membranes can be used to temporarily stop excessive bleeding. I grabbed an egg and struggled to get a little bit of the membrane out of the bottom of the shell. I got only a small crumpled piece out, and put it on his little cut.
The cut immediately stopped bleeding. We were both stunned. I then looked up more information on those membranes. They can be used to:
- treat wounds to prevent scar tissue;
- reduce the effects of osteoarthritis;
- improve health of skin, hair, and nails.
That was the end of cheap eggs for me. I began buying my eggs from local farmers, and when they weren’t available, got organic eggs from the supermarket. I immediately noticed a difference when cracking the eggs – the shells were tougher to break open.
But how to separate the membrane from the shell? I tried a few methods, none of which worked very well. The membranes were slick, tore easily, and took forever to separate from the shells.
Okay, so maybe the problem, again, was with the eggs themselves. So I moved to the most expensive eggs – organic, free-range, certified humane (raised and handled), and no synthetic pesticides, hormones, or antibiotics.
Viola! The membrane, tough and gauzy, pulled right off in large pieces. So easy! And to me it meant the membrane must be full of nutrients, especially collagen. I wanted those nutrients. If you want to see what a healthy membrane looks like you can see it here on YouTube.
I clean the membranes and drop them into my Vitamix to blend with greens for my smoothies.
To me, it’s worth the extra expense to get high-quality eggs, not only because I am prone to osteoarthritis, but also because as a survivor of highly aggressive end-stage sarcoma, nutrition is extremely important to me. I want to maintain my cancer remission! Healthy eating can only help, in my opinion.
Plus I’d rather get the membrane from eggs I cracked, so I know the source, than something that has been put through a chemical or other process, and then who knows the quality of the membrane anyway. Probably not from the healthiest eggs.
And another benefit. I clean and dehydrate the shells, crush them with a mortar and pestle, then add lemon or lime juice and create my own calcium supplement.
Happy hens make nutritious eggs, which help me stay healthy.
Click here to see a video of healthy egg membranes.
Did you know that cucumbers are BRAIN FOOD?!? And the fresher they are (as in you’re growing them right now aren’t you?!? are they coming out of your ears?!?) the more brain boost they pack?
Cucumbers are high in potassium which helps brain cells talk to each other. When they talk to each other they maintain healthy connections and stay lubricated. Potassium also helps you with that sunny disposition, and lack of it contributes to depression
Cukes also contain an anti-inflammatory plant compound called fisetin, which researchers are discovering helps to delay age related nerve cell decline in the brain. You can’t get more brainy than Lula’s for Lunch,,,and More! Catering ‘s Lomi a’la Lula – Salmon and Cucumber in one genius WALLOP!!
Summer tends to make us want to eat lighter, and fish feels that way to me…so with a little “Deadliest Catch” in mind, I’d like to give you a few tips about purchasing your seafood:
- Stay away from purveyors who don’t display their seafood directly on ice – all seafood needs to STAY as cold as possible at all times. It’s the protein that spoils the fastest!
- If you’re buying something premade and packaged (like a stuffed flounder), there should be virtually no accumulated liquid in the package.
- Fish should smell like a cross between the ocean and a clean running creek. If it smells too fishy, something’s “fishy”.
- It’s best to not be lazy about your shrimp. By it shell on and clean it at home – the shell holds in moisture which keeps your shrimp plump and firm. Besides, the shells can be used for a broth or sauce that will GREATLY enhance your shrimp!
- If you’ve got a recipe you want to try but can’t find the particular seafood it’s asking for, ask your fishmonger. Virtually EVERY fish has one or two perfect substitutions – get what’s freshest!
Lula’s for Lunch…and More! Catering wishes for you the most fabulous summer ever – loaded with delicious fresh seafood! The picture above is of a GORGEOUS Steelhead Trout (this particular filet weighing in at about 4.5 pounds… 🙂 )
I’m not a beer drinker. There, I said it. There are some beers that taste good to me, but in general, I don’t like the carbonation (I don’t drink pop either) and what it does to my ‘constitution”. That being said, Cincinnati s a great beer town, and is becoming more so every day with our new micro-breweries and pubs. So, I thought, perhaps there are others out there who might like to know what they’re drinking, or talking about, when celebrating our city’s great tradition. Here you go:
Beer (ALL beer – lager, ale, stout, bock, pilsener, porter, etc) is made from the same ingredients: water, barley malt, hops, and yeast. What makes a different taste, style, or type of beer is the addition of other ingredients, different types of yeast, and fermentation temperature. Age also changes the flavor of beer. So let’s touch on the 5 major “types” of beer and try and make sense of it:
ALE: Ales are not aged, and are made with a yeast that floats to the top of the vat during fermentation. They contain a little more alcohol than lagers. They often have a hint of fruit in their flavor or aftertaste. A type of ale is STOUT. Darker and stronger than regular ale, a stout is brewed with toasted malt.
LAGER: The yeast in lagers sinks to the bottom of the vat and is fermented slowly and at cool temperatures, and take one to six weeks to age. Types of lager are:
PILSENER: About a third fewer calories and about 20% less alcohol than regular lager. Pale and golden, they are your “light” beers.
PORTER: The stronger flavor of this lager comes from toasting the malt before brewing. It is a bit higher in alcohol content as well.
BOCK: A dark German style of lager, bocks are traditionally spring beers, but these days they are brewed year round. They are rich, and thicker (in Germany they are made by freezing the beer and taking off the top layer of ice to thicken it). Bocks are brewed with roasted malts.
Lula’s for Lunch…and More! Catering uses beer in some of our recipes. Try our Ballpark Casserole – our Brats and Metts are poached in beer before grilling. Or, this fall, order our Cheddar-Ale Fondue, served with our Brats and Metts as well as our homemade German Salt Rye! You can always order our Beer Marinated Pork Tenderloin Sandwich from our Deli! Cheers!
Apparently I’m kind of obsessed with sugar, which is odd since I’m not a real sweets fan. I looked over past blogs to see if I’d given this information before and I haven’t, so I think you’ll appreciate all of the names on labels that really mean sugar. Here’s why it’s important: SUGAR IS PHYSICALLY ADDICTIVE. Just like a narcotic. It affects dopamine receptors and causes the brain to behave as if it’s reacting to a narcotic pleasure loop. And sadly, almost anything “white” has hidden sugar in it. Here are most of the names you will find on the back (or FRONT!) of a food label that mean SUGAR:
*Fructose *Sucrose *Agave *Dextrose *Lactose *Galactose *High-fructose corn syrup(we all knew that didn't we?)*Xylitol *Sorghum *Stevia *Treacle *Sucanat *Panela *Evaporated Cane Juice *Dextran *Anhydrous Dextrose