This week has definitely been about food, full stop. At my husband’s natural grocer employer, some of the food that they can’t sell anymore on the shelves (due to expiration dates, aesthetics, and what-not) comes up for grabs for employees to take home. (Most of the food actually goes to gleaners and the food bank, but the “blue slip” that does become available to employees goes fast). So he makes sure to stay connected to the folks in grocery and produce for a few particular things which has made a noticeable difference in our expenditures. For example, as he drinks coffee 5 days a week (he’s slowed down his caffeine intake a bit and reduced to tea the other two days of the week), we get 95% of that free due to expiration dates, and while summer was all about kale (which went to the ducks as they love love LOVE kale and we hate it), autumn has been much better, with mushrooms and bok choy needing to be rescued this week. So with that, and my ongoing need to start liking more forms of winter greens, I made this bok choy and mushroom stir fry and grilled up some of our Iliamna share of sockeye salmon marinated in black bean sauce and other “teriyaki ingredients” (tamari, ginger, etc.) and hot damn that was so freakin’ lovely. Very few winter greens are up my alley, but I’m trying I tell ya!
And yeah, we have to figure out what to do with the pig’s head from Dan’s charcuterie class that is now wrapped up in our freezer til we find a recipe that appeals to us. Three ways to cook a pig’s head has some interesting ideas, so I’ll let you know how that goes. And yeah, if you were curious, that pig’s eye definitely follows you, I tell ya! (The second picture is when we were getting a look inside its mouth…bad teeth and all…sigh…I couldn’t have done this 10 years ago!). Last night we had the paupiettes (think pork pounded then then stuffed with potatoes and other veg) but it wasn’t my piece of cake as to me it tasted like a glorified pork chop (I think when it comes to piggy, I like it cured – ham, salami, etc. – as I’ve never been a fan of things like pork loin, chops, etc. – but sweet ‘n’ salt that stuff up and I’m a total lush!
Oh yes, it’d definitely chicken & veg stock making season – I seem to run out of this so quickly, no matter how many quarts I make! We keep a container in the freezer to toss veg scraps and bones into and when it’s full I get the pot going for a few hours with some salt, pepper and a few dried herbs (I dried a crap-ton from the garden this year) til it’s nice and deeply hued. Hella yum.
On a non-food note (but smelling so good you kinda want to eat it…), after some experimenting I’ve got the body wash/hand soap recipe down pat. Based on Wellness Mama’s recipe, we are using olive & castor oil, hemp castille soap (amen for the damaged-but-full bottle of Dr Bronner’s that my husband got from work for free) and our bee’s honey, with some orange essential oil we’ve had on hand for far too long, which gives it a lovely but not-overpowering scent, it is GREAT! I didn’t have a soap dispenser then thought, “wait, I’m always seeing inventive things for mason jars so maybe they have one with a soap dispenser on it?” Hah – sure enough, they do. Suh-weet! One for the bathroom sink, one for the shower. Woo hoo!
And finally, I’ve reopened my “women’s health bible” to read about perimenopause from Dr Northrup’s perspective which has been helpful in many ways. She kind of sits on the fence when it comes to many of the symptoms, and refuses to address the tremendous animal cruelty involved in the creation of Premarin for HRT (for those not aware, it’s made from the urine of pregnant mares – read more here), but she does give some wise words about coming to this point in one’s life, which I’ll talk about in a future post as – shockingly, haha – I’ve got a lot to say. It’s amazing how much my life has changed since I originally read her book as part of my Women’s Health class in 2013… (Note to the infertile, however: do NOT read her bullshit section on fertility where she finds multiple ways to oversimplify infertility and insinuates that it’s all about getting your mental house in order if you want to have a baby, not to mention glorifies motherhood above all else. Fuck that shaming shit.)