While adventuring along the Skalkaho Road (Route 38) Rose Hip season is in full swing. That means, it’s time to harvest and process all these beautiful end of summer/beginning of autumn fruits. For further reading, I’m going to refer readers over to this article on processing Rose Hips on The Spruce.
Rose hips were one of my grandmother’s favorite foods. My grandmother was the daughter of a feminist, progressive “woman’s doctor” in the Deep South (Alabama). She told me a story once about how the blood and other body fluids from miscarriages and complicated births were used to feed/fertilize her family’s rose bushes while they were cleaning the surgical delivery suite in the family’s basement. Traditionally, especially in the South, human blood and animal blood was used as fertilizer for roses. You can find instructions on using blood meal to fertilize your rose bushes here.
I could go into great detail about the religious and spiritual significance around the use of blood to fertilize rose bushes that would then be used to grow and harvest the eventual resulting rose hips from the flowers. There is something truly beautiful about this cycle of life and connectedness between the earth and this particular food, especially as we enter a season where “the veil thins.”
A word of advice: if you collect wild rose hips soak them in water overnight unless you like extra protein. Use a slotted spoon to lift them from the water. You’ll see the grubbies at the bottom of the container. Pour this out, or strain them out.
I’ll add another update with preparations of rose hips including tea, jam, and cordial soon. I need to go back out and collect more rose hips before I can write about these preparation processes, specifically the cordial.
What seasonal foraging foods do you like hunting for in autumn? Are there any family favorites? Any traditions?
It’s been a while since I adulterated chocolate chip cookies. This time we went about it by making a triple batch of base dough, then split it into five parts. Four were frozen as logs to be thawed and adulterated at a later time. The fifth? We went ahead and tried out adding Old Bay.
After the giant batch of dough was made by tripling the method described here, we put some in a bowl and added a teaspoon of Old Bay Seasoning.
Now, some of you, if you’re anything like Jacob, do not trust me. You think, “wtf?! Old Bay?!”
I am from the part of the United States where we put Old Bay on everything – accidentally or purposely. Plus, you can’t tell me what’s normal, I’m descended from ship captains, chemists, geophysicists, engineers (both civil and otherwise), bootleggers, stockyard accountants, and FORTRAN/COBOL programmers. Do not twist, shred, crumple, and/or mutilate the cards for an accurate read out. We’re explorers of our curiosities and proud of it.
Knead the Old Bay through the dough until throughly mixed and form into a ball or log. At this step you could freeze your flavored cookie dough, but this is when we’re taste testing.
I wanted larger cookies, but you should be able to easily divide the dough into 12 dough balls.
Bake on the top rack (for a crispy bottom and chewy top, though get the dough cold first or it may rise too much). Checking that the dough is below 76 degrees prior to baking should be sufficient (this is the temperature at which coconut oil solidifies – the colder the better). I regret skipping that step. Do this after the dough balls have been formed.
The baking step should take about 10 minutes on a greased metal cookie sheet, but keep in mind the caveats mentioned in my previous post.
I’m happy to share that this combination was delightful! The cookies disappeared so fast that we failed to get reaction pictures.
Thank you so much for taking the time out of your day to read about this creative adulteration of instant chocolate chip cookies. If you enjoyed this post, please like, share, and/or leave a comment. This helps me know which posts my readers like best. I encourage readers to try new things, experiment, and don’t be afraid to replace ingredients if you’re allergic to them. You’d be amazed what you might discover!
I love exploring new and unusual foods that break the normal monocultures people expect – particularly, wild edible foods.
It had been a while since I did a recipe comparable to the Ship of Theseus, so it seemed time to make that happen again. I hope everyone is ready 🙂
Pictured above are Saskatoon berries. While similar to huckleberries or blueberries, Saskatoon berries do have a higher quantity of amygdalin than some other fruits and this breaks down into hydrogen cyanide. Eating too much of any fruit containing large amounts of amygdalin will you sick, but heat will break this down easily.
But how do you use them? In baking! Today, I’m going to share my recipe for Saskatoon berry biscuits. I based the recipe on one for blueberry drop biscuits, but I made quite a few significant changes to all of the ingredients to the point that it’s no longer the same recipe. Additionally, please keep in mind that the baking process heats the berries to a toasty 500 F (260 C) for ~10 minutes and helps guarantee that the berries are safe to eatfor sensitive populations.
It’s important that you always wash berries before you cook with them. I removed all kinds of twigs and things from these before I added these to the dough, but I’m getting ahead of myself.
So, besides approximately 1 cup* of Saskatoon berries, what other supplies will I need? You can replace 1 cup of Saskatoon berries with a cup of huckleberries or local wild blueberry relative – I’m sure Maine blueberries would be divine!
*I include metric measurements for all of my ingredients at the bottom of this post
Because I try to reduce the overall sugar content of these recipes, I use Truvia sweetener baking mix.
I make my own self rising flour using Namaste flour blend (though you can use any cup for cup gluten free flour blend containing xantham gum). You may find that you need to adjust the ratios depending on the humidity and elevation of where you are living. I baked these biscuits at 3500 feet (1067 meters) above sea level and about 30% humidity.
The next task is to combine all dry ingredients called for – in this case it’s the sugar substitute and the self rising gluten free flour blend. Make sure to take your time with this step because uneven mixing can create issues. The one thing I would have changed while making this recipe is that I would have added a sifting step (I do not own a sifter).
Before we go any further, make sure your oven is preheating to a toasty 500 F (260 C) and get a vent fan going. At that temperature if you have anything baked to the inside of your oven, your smoke alarms will let you know.
Next, we add the dairy free milk option.
Let’s make something really clear: I’m from The South. I like my fats. They make everything taste good. In the drop biscuits I grew up with we used butter and full fat buttermilk, so I thought why not use coconut oil and canned coconut milk?
It takes a bit more effort though – because canned coconut milk comes out looking like this:
Doesn’t that look appetizing?
To fix this, place the bowl in the microwave for 15 seconds, then stir, and repeat until smooth. You’ll end up with a homogenous and smooth coconut milk.
Okay! We have all of our wet ingredients, fats, fruits and dry ingredients. Before we go any further be sure to double check your berries for stems and ripeness.
Next, add the coconut oil and start cutting (with 2 knives) the coconut oil into the dry ingredient mixture until you end up with dry pea sized granules.
Next, slowly add your coconut milk little by little and continue cutting in until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and the majority of the mix looks moistened.
It should looks something like what I have pictured below:
Now, add your berries and very gently (as to avoid squishing them) fold in your fresh berries. I did the folding part with a flat wooden spoon.
Once fully incorporated, move to a plastic or silicone mat and get a wooden rolling pin (marble or silicone may work here too) and gently roll out dough mass into a 1 inch (~2.5 cm) thick mass. I used a medium sized biscuit cutter, but the choice is yours. A smaller sized biscuit cutter will likely double the yield.
Continue to cut, transfer to a greased cookie sheet. If you can’t cut, reshape and gentle roll out without pushing the dough down with force – you do not want to squish the dough particles together!
A medium biscuit cutter yielded 8 biscuits, but the small may yield closer to 12-16 depending on how big your small sized biscuit cutter is.
Once the biscuits have started to get a nice golden brown appearance on top they are cooked through. Go ahead and take them out of the oven, but let them cool to at least 100 F (37.8 C) before serving. Cook time will vary based on a number of factors – these took approximately 10 minutes in our gas oven.
I’m so happy to have been able to share this recipe of Theseus with you today! While none of the ingredients matched the original version I based this on, it turned out fantastic. Therefore, I am going to put it out into the world and call this one a success.
2 cups (480 g) gluten free self-rising flour
1/3 cup (80 g) truvia baking sugar substitute
1/4 cup (60 g) coconut oil, non-melted
2/3 – 3/4 cup (160 – 180 mL) canned coconut milk, warmed and blended smooth
1 cup (240 g) fresh Saskatoon (or other local wild) berries (frozen may work too)
Did you give this recipe a try? What did you think? Have you ever cooked with Saskatoon berries? Are you a fan? Let me know in the comments below!
Thank you so much for taking the time out of your day to read about this recipe. If you enjoyed this post, please like, share, and/or leave a comment. This helps me know which posts my readers like best. I hope you are well and I encourage you to try new things, experiment, and don’t be afraid to replace ingredients if you’re allergic to them. You’d be amazed what you might discover!
How lazy, you ask? Well, you can buy 2 lbs (907 grams) of baby carrots from the store in a bag. The rest is about 15 minutes worth of work standing in front of a stove. That’s it. It’s okay though, this is one of Jacob’s favorites.
Grab that bag of baby carrots. Throw it in a cast iron pan with 2 tablespoons (or more) of coconut oil or olive oil, salt, pepper, and fresh chopped parsley. I like adding garlic scapes to taste in the oil first and getting those cooking while the oil is heating to medium or medium high heat.
While the oil is heating, pat your baby carrots dry and combine a half teaspoon of sea salt, a quarter teaspoon of ground black pepper, and a quarter tablespoon of fresh chopped parsley in a separate bowl – you’ll be adding these later. Remember: you don’t want the outsides of your carrots wet. Why? Water hitting hot oil splatters and splattering hot oil hurts. A lot.
Your oil is hot, now what? Add the baby carrots. All of them. Stir and coat them completely with the oil, then let them sit for a couple minutes, then rotate the bottom to the top. Repeat this for about ten minutes. Then, add your seasoning mixture and stir in completely making sure all of the carrots are coated evenly. Repeat letting the carrots sit for a few minutes, then rotating the bottom to the top. You should notice that the exterior of the carrots starts to blister and turn a brown/black while the carrots begin to soften. Once the carrots are completely tender, they’re ready to serve!
Leftovers are great chopped for soups and stews or pureed for sauces. The options are pretty endless. Bottom line: there are no excuses for carrots to go bad.
Hard mode: If you don’t want to be lazy, you could buy carrots and not a bag of baby carrots, then chop them or coin them. You can make a root vegetable medley and cook it the same way (I highly recommend turnips). If you do buy carrots, make sure to get the carrots that have the carrot greens on them. At the very end, remove the cooked carrots and add a little more oil and salt to the pan, then fry up the chopped carrot greens. I might be a little weird for this, but I love the taste of carrot greens and they’re one of the most exciting parts of any carrot harvest for me, even if I’m the only one eating them.
If you liked this post, please be sure to share, like, and/or comment below. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this brief write up of a quick and easy way to cook carrots.