Monthly Archives: October 2016

Benefits of Local Food

5Given the farm crisis within the late 1980’s, and far more recent struggles inside farm sector, for instance globally declining commodity costs and foreign competition, the regional foods motion has emerged as a response to lower farm incomes and greater costs of company.

Primary Many advantages within the Neighborhood Foodstuff Motion

Proponents in the community meals motion advocate that nearby food are a benefit along four primary sectors: Environmental, social, financial, and human:

* Environmental: Avoids extensive fossil fuel use, decreased foodstuff miles and non-industrially processed meals (fewer chemicals utilized and big machinery less necessary); Biodiversity encouraged via increases in organic production

* Social: Helps build community vibrancy and retain neighborhood traditions; Aids tourism and associated regional identity formation; men and women want way more locally grown ingredients

* Financial: Short supply chains and farmers’ markets keep income and employment in locality; Fosters tourism and niche markets.

* Human: Fosters fresh, seasonal food items intake; higher content of vital water-soluble vitamins (ie. no transcontinental shipping); Enhanced fibre and lower fat, sugar and salt content of non-industrially processed ingredients

Long-Term Sustainable, Environmental Farming

A sustainable area meal procedure will boost the sustainability of farms inside the region. It will also shrink the ecological footprint of food items and will in turn ensure the security of your regional foods supply.

In some studies, researchers have identified that from the food purchased at a farmers’ market in Toronto, consisting of locally produced foodstuff, averaged 0.0795 tonnes of Green Home Gas emissions per kilometre of transport.

In contrast, the items from the supermarket nearby, mostly consisting non-local food, had Green Home Gas emissions of 3.853 tonnes per kilometre. This is just one example of a extended list of comparisons in between nearby and conventional meal miles.

Social Amazing benefits of Nearest Food

There have been quite few studies done to illustrate the social rewards to farmers and other producers. On the other hand, a recent study conducted by Neighborhood Food items Plus has discovered that customers are increasingly moving towards purchasing area meals: “86 percent of Canadians recognize the importance of nearest foodstuff and 46 percent will purchase neighborhood food first”.

The fact is clear; people want a greater voice in determining the source of their foods. Sweden has recently announced plans to produce a new label for ‘climate-friendly’ ingredients. People will be able to select food items according to the impact its production and transportation techniques have on the climate, and also the UK grocery chain Tesco has also started to put ‘carbon labels’ on its solutions.

Financial Many advantages of City Foodstuff

Finally, Canada is really a net importer of agricultural goods which, specifically in these harsh financial times, could be a drain on our hard-earned cash. Among 1990 and 2001 agricultural exports enhanced by 50%, but imports elevated by more than 70% more than the same period.

Yet, if Canadians were far better informed about the many benefits of community foods initiatives in their region, Canada could minimize its reliance on food items imports and could greatly reduce scarcity inside foods technique. Ontario accounted for 57.5% with the Canadian agricultural imports in 2002 (representing a $3.7 billion agricultural trade deficit). This deficit could be dramatically decreased making use of regional foods product programs.

The positive aspects of native food items movements are enormous, but perhaps the point most crucial to parents and families, is that nearby food are nutritious and healthier for the environment.

Foodie Holidays to Sicily – Enjoy a Regional Feast

4For many travellers, partaking of authentic regional food is part of the pleasure and adventure of travel. For hardcore foodies, however, the cuisine itself is enough reason for the journey.

Of course, every destination in the world has its local culinary treats to offer, but for dedicated food epicureans, no other place offers as much culinary diversity, history, and sheer wealth of quality ingredients as holidays to Sicily.

While some may carelessly classify Sicilian cuisine under the umbrella of Italian food, true epicureans know that, like the island itself, the cuisine is the product of evolution. It retains the influences of past conquerors and citizens such as, among others, the Phoenicians, the Arabs, the Greeks, the Romans, the Germans, the Spanish, and the French. Add to these influences the fact that each family has their own ‘secret recipes’ handed down from one generation to the next and perfected through time, you can be sure that, during food focused holidays to Sicily, your meals are going the be the furthest thing from frozen supermarket lasagne as possible!

Locally grown fresh ingredients are also the key to the incredible cuisine you’ll feast on during holidays to Sicily. In addition to being known for premium olives and olive oil, the region is also renowned for its pistachios, almonds, grapes, tomatoes, and pears – not to mention incredible cheeses and wines. Below, we present a quick guide as to the best foods the region has to offer.

Pistachios

If you love pistachios then food focused holidays to Sicily are your chance to sample the best pistachios in the world. Here you’ll find the pistachio used in everything from gelato (the best in the world) to pasta. Try a scoop or two of pistachio gelato on a brioche or pasta with pistachio pesto. We can guarantee you’ve never had anything like it anywhere else in the world.

Sardines

Palermo, the region’s capital, is known for its seafood dishes, but its best-known and most iconic dish is the pasta con le sarde. Sardines, wild fennel, capers, and raisins are procured fresh from markets (such as Mercato della Vucciria), and cooked to create a sauce that tastes undeniably of the ocean. If you aren’t fond of sardines, we can guarantee that tasting this dish will change your mind! For other fish dishes, try sfincione tuna, tuna with ragù sauce, and hake cooked the Palermo way.

Cheese

Pecorino cheese is enjoyed the world over and will be easily accessible all over the island, but for a truly local and authentic culinary experience, cheese from Ragusa – such as ragusano, caciocavallo ibleo, canestrato, and tumazzo medicano – in a local pastieri pie with a piece of exquisite Modica chocolate or glass of local wine is the perfect end to any meal.

Almonds

Almonds, especially those grown and harvested in Avola, are another premium ingredient you’ll encounter again and again. Honey and almond mustazzola cookies, vucciddati, almond gelato, and the island’s famous torrone nougat make this a true paradise for those with a sweet tooth.

Romanian Delicacies – Food For The Mind

3Romanians are people, who relish their food. Especially on an occasion, you will find a Romanian piling up his table with all sorts of delicacies. Food habits are a hot topic these days, with specialists in medicine and nutrition advising us to eat healthy food like fruits and raw vegetables, which are seasonal, locally grown and fresh, meaning that we should not go after too many exotic foods.

The people of Romania are perfectly aware of what healthy food means. However, they have not abandoned their traditionally fine cooking completely in order to subscribe to the health food fad. In every corner of Romania there are regional culinary specialties.

Take the cuisine of Transylvania, for example. The traditional Sunday meal of Transylvania must have a noodle soup with chicken that is raised at the household poultry. The noodles used in the soup cannot be just any noodles however. It has to be prepared at home. This noodle soup is on any list of famous Romanian recipes that you can find.

Some traditional Romanian delicacies have been borrowed from other cultures. The schnitzel with fried potatoes is essentially an Austrian preparation, which is cooked on Sundays after coming back from the church. Romanians, like many other nations, have a strong church going tradition, and the schnitzel ritual is kept alive as a symbol of that tradition throughout Transylvania. It is washed down with fine wines and palinca, a strong brew which is made from grapes or prunes.

Dessert too is usually an elaborate affair. Different kinds of cookies and pies are baked by the women folk of Romania. Pies and cookies with nuts, cream or vanilla are the specialties. The baking is done in an oven with a wood stove. There is also the traditional home baked bread, which is made in a typical earthen oven.

The homemade bread is a big, spongy affair and is still made with traditional ingredients without any artificial additives. It contains potatoes and wheat flour as in the past. It remains one of the famous traditional preparations, because it is delicious, with a crunchy outer crust and soft inside.

As you can see, the sheer range of Romanian culinary delights is huge, whether the cuisine originated in the country or was borrowed from other cultures. Also, the preparations are all exquisitely delicious, giving Romanian cuisine a name in the culinary world.

This is an age of packaging, and many people around the world are influenced by the wrapping or the colors of the food they buy. There are young people, who have never known the taste of a tomato fresh from the kitchen garden, or for that matter, a chicken fed with corn.

But Romanians can still afford to be traditional in their cooking habits. This does not mean, however, that all Romanians cook at home and eat only traditional delicacies. Many Romanians have got used to dining on processed food of the heat and serve variety, especially those, who have got to cope with a hectic schedule.

But the wonderful traditional cuisine of Romania is in a class of its own and should be tried by everyone. It is just not possible to avoid falling in love with mouth watering Romanian delicacies, like the delectable “sarmale” (cabbage rolls) or the soups and “ciorba” (broth).

Delicious Japanese Oden Recipe That Will Keep You Warm In Winter

2There is a vast variety of dishes that Japanese cuisine offers. There are also many regional specialties. Having lived in Japan for many years taught me which dishes are best for summer and which are best for winter. I remember the apartment that I rented when I first came to Japan. It was just below the mountain and just beside a stream. The view was awesome but it was terribly cold in winter. The apartment lacked proper insulation unlike the apartments that we got at home. To help me survive the cold winter nights, I had to dress up like an Santa Clause and eat lots of oden.

So what is oden? Oden is a popular Japanese pot dish in which is simmered slowly in dashi (flavoring) or in a sauce based in soy sauce. It is usually prepared in a big ceramic pot called “donabe” or a big aluminum pot called “onabe”. Oden ranks high and is a favorite of many Japanese families. There are many numbers of oden recipes and here is one.

Looking for the right ingredients is not easy if you do not have access to a Japanese grocery or store nearby. I was able to find some ingredients being sold online. Most of the ingredients are difficult to make from scratch and can be time consuming to prepare so I just buy them at a nearby Japanese grocery or buy them online.

Oden Recipe (for four)

Ingredients:

– One big radish

– Three carrots

– Three medium size potatoes

– Five boiled eggs (peeled or egg shell removed)

– Two blocks of “konyaku”

– Five fish cake blocks or “chikuwa”

– Three block of soft tofu

– Five slices of “atsuage” (deep fried tofu)

– Your choice of dashi flavoring (flavor broths) or soy sauce

– Three tablespoons of Japanese rice wine or “sake”

-Two tablespoons of sugar or “mirin”

Preparation:

– Peel the radish and slice it into thick rounds

– Peel potatoes and cut in half

– Peel and cut carrots into big pieces

– In a big pot, add all the ingredients listed above.

– Add fish cake and atsuage inside the pot.

– Add the dashi or flavoring, Japanese rice wine and sugar

– Add the eggs and the soft tofu

– Bring the pot to boil and add a bit of water and “dashi” when the level of the soup goes down.

– Reduce heat and its done

I hope this delicious oden recipe will keep you warm in winter somehow.

Food and Drink in the British Isles

1UK restaurants offer a wide diversity of cuisine from all over the world but why not try some local dishes during your villa holiday. Traditional British food usually involves good plain cooking with fresh local ingredients and is often found in pubs or in restaurants which offer lighter versions of old favourites. Roast beef served with Yorkshire pudding or local specialties such as Lincolnshire or Cumberland pork sausages can be found on most menus. In the North Black Pudding made with offal is popular and lamb and chicken dishes feature on many menus along with hearty meat pies and homemade soups. Meals are usually served with chips, mash, boiled or roast potatoes and a good selection of vegetables. Whitbyon the east coast is famous for its crabs and the southeast coast is renowned for its mussels, whelks, cockles and jellied eels. In Britain you are never far from a fish and chip shop selling battered cod or haddock with chips sprinkled with salt and vinegar. Traditional puddings include fruit crumbles, apple pie or sponge pudding usually served with custard. Afternoon tea is still popular and you will find a good selection of cakes, scones, jam and cream and sandwiches on a teashop menu. Cheese is a great regional specialty; look out for different varieties at delicatessens and farmers markets.

There are some excellent award winning white English wines such as those produced by Three Choirs in Gloucestershire and Wickham in Hampshire.While enjoying your British Self Catering holiday you’ll find a good selection of real ales is served in many pubs; look out for local micro-breweries. Mild such as Banks’, Holdens and Highgate is most often found in the Midlands. Pale ales are more popular and Timothy Taylor, Adnams, Shepherd Neame and Marston’s have good examples. Cider is still a favourite particularly in the southwest of England like Thatcher’s in Somerset.

In Scotland look out for traditional foods such as haggis (spiced sheep’s innards and seasoning) usually served with tatties (potatoes) and neeps (mashed turnip). Venison and grouse dishes are popular as are stovies, a mix of potatoes, onion and beef cooked in dripping. Scotch broth is made from mutton or beef stock, pearl barley, carrots and leeks while Cock-a-leekie soup is made from chicken, rice, leeks and prunes cooked in chicken stock. Smoked fish dishes such as kippers, salmon and Arbroath smokies (smoked haddock) can often be found. Finally, look out for a delicious chowder like dish called Cullen skink made from smoked haddock, mashed potato and milk. Scotland is also famous for its numerous whisky distilleries and a few beers too, like Deuchars and Caledonian.

Traditional dishes in Wales include Welsh lamb hot pot and cawl (meat stew with potatoes and vegetables). Fish is popular and other dishes such as Welsh rarebit (melted cheese on toast) and laver bread made from oatmeal and seaweed. There are plenty of local cheeses to sample such as Caerphilly and Pencarreg. Try Bara brith, a type of tea loaf and Welsh cakes, flat scones cooked on a griddle. Look out for eating establishments belonging to the Taste of Wales (Blas y Cymru) usually a sign of good food and finally some beers to try, Brains or Felinfoel.

In Northern Ireland try local cheeses, oysters and Guinness, Irish stew and drisheen (Black pudding). Look out for soda bread, Barm brak (tea loaf) and potato bread and finish the evening with an Old Bushmills whiskey.

If visiting the Channel Islands, self catering in Guernsey and self catering in Jersey, then you will find plenty of fresh fish, local dairy products and fresh seasonal produce on the menu. Look out for delicious home grown produce known as hedge veg sold by the roadside throughout the islands. Enjoy!