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Author Archives: Ema Williamson
Dear People Who Say They Cannot Cook, I kindly ask that you reconsider your
position. Why? Because cooking is not magic. Continue reading
When We Source From Elsewhere It Will Be From People With Whom We Strike Up
Conversations And Form Relationships. They Are People Who Care For Their
Own Piece Of The Earth. Continue reading
I’m excited to announce one my adventures for this semester: I’ll be
interning at Roaring Brook Market & Cafe. And I’ll be chronicling my
interning here on Gastronomic Permaculture. Continue reading
Yoghurt and granola is my ultimate comfort food.
Classic. Crunchy. Tangy. Not-to-sweet. You know what makes this pairing even more beautiful? They can made in tandem.
First of all, people are often quite amazed to learn that you can make yoghurt yourself. You can. Anybody can. It isn’t difficult and you don’t need any special equipment. And because the process of making yoghurt is rather spread out – since the milk must be heated and then cooled – it allows ample time to make the granola. Using the residual heat from baking the granola, you can incubate the yoghurt. You’re using heat that would otherwise go unused. They really are a perfect couple.
What you will need for the yoghurt:
1/2 gallon milk (cow or goat)
1/2 cup plain yoghurt
Mason jars or containers for yoghurt
1 roasting pan
1 bathroom towel
What you will need for the granola:
6 cups rolled oats
1 – 2 cups nuts or seeds
1 – 3 teaspoons spices of your choice
1 cup liquid sweetener and/or oil
1 roasting pan
This will produce about 64oz. of yoghurt and 7 cups of granola.
Start by warming milk for the yoghurt.
You will need 1/2 a gallon of milk, either cow or goat. (Goat will yield a thinner consistency and require longer to incubate.) Pour into a large metal saucepan, place over medium-high heat and bring to just below a boil. If this is your first time, I recommend you use a thermometer and bring it to about 190° F. Do not let it bubble.
While the milk warms, start the granola.
First, preheat the oven to 325° F.
Then lay a metal roasting pan across two of your stove’s burners. Light both to medium-high heat. Pour your oats, nuts, seeds and spices into the pan:
- 6 cups rolled oats
- 1 – 2 cups nuts or seeds
- 1 – 3 teaspoons spices of your choice (cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cardamom, cloves)
Shuffle the oats, nuts, seeds and spices around the pan until they are toasted and fragrant, about 10 – 15 minutes. Then, remove from heat.
The milk shouldn’t be done heating yet, so finish the granola.
Put another small pot on the stove. Measure out one cup of liquid sweetener and/or oil. We used 1/2 honey and 1/2 cup coconut oil. But this is flexible, you could use all honey, all maple syrup or all brown rice syrup. Or you can substitute oil for up to one half a cup.
Heat the sweetener and oil until thin and runny. Pour over oats/nuts/seeds and stir until well combined. Sprinkle sea salt over the granola, to taste.
Put the roasting pan in the oven. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool and then store in an airtight container.
The milk should be up to temperature.
When it hits 190°, or thereabouts, take it off to the stove. Let it cool to 120°.
When finished, remove the granola from the oven. Turn off the heat.
Time to prepare the yoghurt.
When the milk is cooled, measure out 1/2 cup yoghurt. Ladle about 1 cup milk over the yoghurt and stir. Then pour the mixture back into the heated milk. Stir.
Pour the milk/yoghurt mixture into mason jars, or store bought yoghurt containers. Wrap them up in a bathroom towel. Place the wrapped up containers in a roasting pan. Check the oven. It should be about 130° – cool enough that you can put your hand inside but still pretty warm. Put the roasting pan into the unlit oven. Close the oven.
Let the yoghurt incubate for at least four hours.
You can let it sit overnight or just for a couple hours of the afternoon. The longer you leave it, the thicker and tangier the yoghurt will become.
After the amount of time you choose, remove the roasting pan from the oven. Put the yoghurt in the fridge and let it cool.
And there you have it. Breakfast. Or a snack. Or dessert…
One disclaimer: While the yoghurt is incubating, remember that’s it’s in the oven. Leave a note for yourself if you have to. Because you may find you need to use the broiler. And you may or may not remember that you have a very flammable bathroom towel in the oven. And it may or may not catch on fire if the broiler is lit. I speak from personal experience…
The fourth permaculture principle has been on my mind lately. It seems pertinent, since this is January, the month of resolutions. I prefer “apply self regulation and accept feedback” to making a list o… Continue reading
One day, while wandering the aisles of a grocery store, we got unusually
excited about the idea of making every kind of nut butter. And so – after
months of dreams and cravings – we finally did it. Continue reading
Welcome to 2014. It’s a fine time to start some new projects, don’t you think?
We have quite a few surprises up our sleeves. Firstly, for the next year we will be exploring each of the twelve points of our manifesto. During the first week of the month, expect a post devoted to each of the points.
And the other projects that are on the way? Well, you’ll have to be patient for those – but we promise they’re worth it. Hint: we’re fitting a kitchen into a box.
Our manifesto was constructed over several months, with a bit of inspiration from Keri Smith. Every idea was carefully refined; not a single word was left untouched. But this year, to become even more acquainted with the principles of gastronomic permaculture, we’re going in depth with the manifesto.
And so, the first point.
We declare that gastronomic permaculture integrates ourselves, our food, our community and our earth. It recognises that every meal Is accomplished in an ecosystem, and it is the convergence our three basic needs: nourishment, security and love.
In true permaculture fashion, we begin with Zone 0. We begin with the central point of gastronomic permaculture. Really, we think it’s the central point of cooking and eating in general: nourishment, security and love.
When you eat (you see, we’re assuming you’re not a zombie or otherwise undead creature), you are participating in an ecosystem of activity. There is the natural system – the soil, the water, the air – and the human system – the farmer, the store keeper, the people you are cooking with and feeding. There are pre-existing conditions; there’s no getting rid of them. Gastronomic permaculture works to integrate every zone of interaction.
Every meal you make begins outside of your kitchen and ends outside of your kitchen. The vegetables you saute may have been grown in your garden, or down the road in the neighbour’s garden, or hundreds of miles away. The olive oil in the bottle on the counter might have come from multiple countries; the salt from seas you haven’t seen. There were hands aside from your own that crafted the food you cook with; there might be hands aside from your own that prepare the food you eat. Hopefully, there are other hands you can break bread with. The things you discard might go to a landfill (via your waste bin) or you will find a way to remake some of them – as stock, maybe. Or perhaps they’ll go to a compost pile (either your own or that of a local farm), where they will rejoin the soil from whence they came.
Every meal is one stop in a cycle. And in every meal is an echo of our three basic needs: nourishment, security and love.
To send out the old year and bring in the old, we concocted an experiment. Probiotics meet sweet treat. A kombucha float.
Kombucha itself is an ecosystem of nutrients. And once you have a mother grown, you can produce kombucha as long as the mother remains healthy. It also give you an opportunity to settle the faint of heart, but that’s a post for another time…
We’re pretty big fans of kombucha. We’ve tried to sample every flavour we can get our hands on and Tim even did his final chemistry project on the fermented tea beverage. Somewhere along the way we got the idea to make a kombucha float. We created an “ice cream” from yoghurt and coconut milk, and Tim brewed a jar of kombucha. Given the contents of both, it’s a veritable festival of cultures.
It’s a good way to ring in the new year. Something sweet and snazzy. Something with a dose of good stuff in it.
Liquify a 1/2 cup honey (we suggest you use a pot on the stove). Combine with 2 1/2 cups Greek yoghurt and 1 cup full-fat coconut milk. Either connect the whisk attachment to your mixer or grab a whisk. Combine and whip it a bit.
Pour into any kind of dish that can be put into the freezer. Then, obviously, put the dish into the freezer. Every 20 minutes to 1/2 an hour, stir/scrape the frozen/freezing mixture until it is thick.
Scoop the frozen, creamy mixture – “ice cream,” if you will. Place in a glass (or a wine glass, if you want to be fancy, or a mason jar, if you don’t want to be). Open kombucha flavour of your choice and pour over “ice cream.” Make as much as you want, or as little. Sharing is recommended. A straw might be a good idea. Regardless, enjoy.
Also, you can find us on instagram now, if you’re into that kind of thing.
I can’t say pancakes are my favorite food.No, I have too many favorite foods to pick just one. Sweet potatoes, blueberries, pesto, good bread, kale, hummus, tomatoes…I love them equally. Pancakes are on th… Continue reading