Carrot Top Pesto -ELC #5

carrot top pest recipe || cityhippyfarmgirlThe day I found out I could eat the tops of carrots was a bit of an exciting one.

“You can eat them!” I cried.

“Excellent.” He said, in a less than thinking it really was excellent, voice.

I pushed that lack of enthusiasm to the side as I was carrying more than enough excitability for this one to carry us both. Carrot tops eh? Who knew, actually it turns out lots of people knew, and I was just a bit slow on the uptake. So that’s why they quite often sell bunches of carrots with the tops still on… I just thought they were trying to keep the carrots looking au natural. 

What would I make with them? How would they taste? And would I get it by the rest of the family?

Carrot Top Pesto

Bunch of carrot tops, washed and finally chopped.

A couple of cloves of garlic

Juice of a lemon

Enough olive oil to get a good pesto like consistency.

Pop it all into a hand held mixer, and pulse.

With Carrot Top Pesto made, what was I going to eat with it? I had some potatoes that were whispering to be popped into the oven with some rosemary, and that looked like it could be it. Too simple? Surprisingly no. Mr Chocolate drizzled his with some Pukara balsamic vinegar, (which gave it an extra zing) and not a murmur of objection was to be heard about the ‘different’ pesto.

The following day I had more of the potatoes and pesto together, leaving out the snow pea shoots, (which just quietly I feel are a bit of a chore to eat.) Delicious, seriously delicious. I kept taking another bite just to makes sure. Armed with an empty bowl and green speckled lips, I decided that yes, carrot top pesto was indeed a winner.

A local, frugal, seasonal winner.

carrot tops || cityhippyfarmgirl

How about you? Have you made any food discoveries lately? Ever made carrot top pesto? Do you think snow pea shoots are a bit of chore to eat as well?

Where did my food come from?

Carrots- Rita’s Farm, Kemps Creek 50km

Sebago Potato- Naturally Grown, Naturally Better, Crookwell 240km

Snow Pea Shoots- Lin’s Organics, Londonderry 60km

Rosemary- My courtyard

Lemon- My parents in law’s backyard

roast potatoes || cityhippyfarmgirl

 Interested in taking the challenge?

Just how local is local? Well this depends entirely on you. Only you know how you and your family eat. Raise the bar just a little from what you already do. If making sure the majority of your meal includes solely food produced in your country, than make that your challenge. If you want to make it a little trickier, go for produced in the same state…trickier still within 160km.

My aim is to really know where my food is coming from for at least one meal a month, (where I will be posting here in the last week of the month).

Eat Local Challenge #4

Eat Local Challenge #3

Eat Local Challenge #2

Eat Local Challenge #1

eat local challenge || cityhippyfarmgirl

 

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Eat Local Challenge #3

corn and chilli || cityhippyfarmgirl

corn || cityhippyfarmgirlCorn, chilli and lime.

It’s a cracker of a combination, and that’s a known fact. But the issue was I needed a little butter or something like it to get the finely chopped chilli to stick onto the corn. I didn’t have any and refused to step outside my Eat Local Challenge so I was left with…

1/ squeeze the lime juice on the corn and nibble delicate little pieces of chilli off at each mouthful…hmmm, not a great idea. I like my food hot but these little chillies are quite beastly on their own.

2/ I could finely, finely chop them and roll the corn in it, hoping some would stick.

3/ I could delicately drape the chilli over the corn, admire the contrasting colours and then push my hot little garnish to the side. Yep, I’ll do that. (On thinking later, I should have cut the chilli and gently rubbed it over the corn cob. It would have given the bites a little zing, but not the kick in the pants that a big one would have given.)

So with the corn sorted, what did I have left? While I do love corn, there still needed to be a little something else to the plate.

Eat Local challenge || cityhippyfarmgirlTo avoid a line up of wrinkled noses and pouty lips I didn’t bother serving this one to the rest of the family. Brussel sprouts is an acquired taste it seems and every one in this household? Well, they haven’t acquired it yet.

So what’s on the menu and where is it from?

Brussel sprouts- Kurrawong Organics, Kirkconnel (175km)

Radishes- Rita’s Farm, Kemp’s Creek (50km)

Granny Smith Apple- from Orange

Sheep’s Curd- Willowbrae, Chevre Cheese– Wilberforce.

Olive Oil- Lisborne Grove, Hunter Valley

Eat Local challenge|| cityhippyfarmgirl

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How about you? Interested in taking the challenge?

Just how local is local? Well this depends entirely on you. Only you know how you and your family eat. Raise the bar just a little from what you already do. If making sure the majority of your meal includes solely food produced in your country, than make that your challenge. If you want to make it a little trickier, go for produced in the same state…trickier still within 160km.

My aim is to really know where my food is coming from for at least one meal a month, (where I will be posting here in the last week of the month).

For Eat Local Challenge #1 see here.

For Eat Local Challenge #2 see here.

eat local challenge || cityhippyfarmgirl

Eat Local Challenge #1

eat local #1 || cityhippyfarmgirl

Eat LOCAL child version || cityhippyfarmgirl The challenge was on. My Eat Local challenge, and this was the night to be doing. A chaotic evening after a rough day. Not the best choices to start off an challenge but I was wearing it. However it was what we were eating that was more important.

The Menu

For the adults- A raw kale salad with hard boiled eggs. (rice, kale, shallots, brown onion, flat leafed parsley, corn, carrot, lime juice, olive oil, chilli and eggs.)

For the kiddo’s- A similar tamed down version, swapping the kale for lettuce. (rice, corn, lettuce, carrot, olive oil and eggs.)

Where it was from

Rice- from Randall Organic rice

Olive Oil- from Lisborne Grove, Hunter Valley

Vegetables- from Kurrawong Organics and Champion’s Mountain Organics, Mangrove Mountain

Eggs- Ed’s Eggs, Jirandali Farm- Mangrove Mountain (85km from Sydney)

Chilli- my courtyard

eat local || cityhippyfarmgirl

Over all dinner was a success. The kids were happy to eat it all and Mr Chocolate said it was all delicious. He did throw a little Caramelised Balsamic Vinegar on top of his jazz it up a bit- a company that produces 250km’s away. I didn’t, but was kicking myself three hours later for not putting a little more protein in there or fat of some sort…I was hungry!! I guess this is the tricky bit, locally produced vegetarian protein. Besides eggs, what other alternatives do I have? To find out next time.

ooooby vegetables || cityhippyfarmgirl

Tidbits

– Foodconnect- Sydney is no longer, and OOOOBY has taken over. Similar concept, and just as committed. This is from their $39 delivered veg box.

The Locavore Edition– for Australian east coast readers, there is a comprehensive guide to both NSW and Victoria so far, (with Tasmania in the nominating stage.)

eat local || cityhippyfarmgirl

How about you? Interested in taking the challenge?

For more details see this post here and for the nitty gritty of ‘how local is local’- well this depends entirely on you. Only you know how you and your family eat. Raise the bar just a little from what you already do. If making sure the majority of your meal includes solely food produced in your country, than make that your challenge. If you want to make it a little trickier, go for produced in the same state…trickier still within 160km.

My aim is to really know where my food is coming from for at least one meal a month, (I will be post here in the last week of the month). It sounds easy enough at this stage, but as the year progresses will it continue to?

eat local challenge || cityhippyfarmgirl

Edit– Have a peek over here at Christine’s Eat Local deliciousness

Slow Living Essentials- Eat Local #1

Slow Living Essentials- Eat Local #1

Eat Local

EATLocal- cityhippyfarmgirl

I’d often thought I would like to do one of those ‘eat local’ challenges. Problem was time was ticking and I was still just thinking about it.

I needed to get up and out there, doing it. I already think our family’s way of eating is fairly mindful, eating with a conscious but I wanted that extra push, that little bit more. If I was a single person I could push it a lot, a hell of a lot more, but I’m not. So in consideration to my three still small children with sometimes picky taste buds I’m going to set the bar just a little higher than what it is. See how we go and then hopefully move on from there. Mr Chocolate’s taste buds are fairly in tune with mine, so as long as I don’t serve platefuls of sauerkraut and buckwheat he’s reasonably easy to please on the dinner front.

So what’ the challenge?

Once a month, a meal created from local food. Pretty simple really.

Also keeping in mind-organic, free range, spray free, from the farmers market, garden grown, as little packaging as possible, and knowing where it has all been sourced from.  Many of our family meals incorporate a lot of these aspects already, but as one set meal, knowing exactly where everything is coming from, or coming as close as I can anyway, (while still keeping in mind- divided emerging taste buds and importantly a budget.)

We live in a small space in the city, growing extra food is simply not an option for us. BUT there are other foody options and I’m pretty excited to find out what a few more of them might be.

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Local Harvest is a great organisation that runs similar challenges every year. Have a peek for more details on how you can get involved.

Along with what ever I cook up once a week, I’ll also add any great finds or problems I had during the past month- an Eat Local post will be done in the last week of the month.

How about you? Have you done this before? Have you thought about it? Want to give it a crack with me?

Eat Local- cityhippyfarmgirl

Capital L for Locavore

Locavore

A relatively new word that was added to the Oxford Dictionary just a few years ago. Refers to some one who eats food grown or produced locally or within a certain radius. Sometimes called the 100 mile club or for us Aussies it’s a 160km club (but that doesn’t have quite the same ring to it does it.)

Encouraging people to either eat from food they have produced themselves, from farmers markets or within the radius. Locally grown food cuts down on food miles, encourages people to eat healthier, and sustains smaller independent growers that could possibly be bought out by bigger corporations. Eating fresher and seasonally are just added bonuses to eating as a locavore.

I was starting to think maybe we should challenge ourselves and see if we can eat solely as locavores for a week. I was all enthusiastic about it, and then I had a reality check. We live in Sydney, far from the wheat belt of NSW, and I’m not so sure I can convince the monkeys that they don’t really need to eat that toast, porridge, weetbix for breakfast. Or be missing out on any pasta and rice for dinner, (I think they are the only kids on the planet that don’t like potatoes.)

To be a true locavore, is it a lifestyle choice that is simply not accessable to everyday people due to budget constraints?

If I was a single person, I could easily eat as a locavore. However incorporating a budget, and two small children’s tastes, I’m not so sure. So what to do?

Try to find some locavore products that would replace our normal everyday groceries without blowing out purse strings. We already eat as seasonally, healthy, making as many things from scratch as possible. Also keeping in mind organic, locally made and fair trade options. Can I find even more alternatives that are within our locavore area?

What am I aiming for?….Locally grown

If I can’t get that….Family farmed.

If thats still tricky…..make it organic,

and if it simply can’t be organic….Make it fair trade.

First up. Lets see where 160km actually gets us.  http://100milediet.org/get-started/map

Milk is a big thing in this household, a lot is consumed each week. I wasn’t sure I would be able to source some milk straight from the supplier, but then remembered I had seen a stall at the South Sydney Markets a while ago and decided to revisit.

Milk- bought from South Sydney Markets, each week on a Sunday. Supplier- Country Valley

At $5.00 for 2 litres, it is more expensive then your average supermarket milk. Taste wise though, milk isn’t just milk so I discovered. It was really creamy and tasted a lot different. It tasted fresher, more flavoursome, and sort of rolled around your mouth more. My husband agreed. The monkeys, they just drank it, as milk is milk after all for some.

This milk hasn’t had to be sent to another processor, so they can bottle and sell the milk from where they are located in Picton. On further reading through their website, I liked what I read and think that it would be good to support them. I also found that there were a lot more stockists about, carrying the milk. Which is great! I like milk options.

Especially locavore milk options.