Happy Thanksgiving!! Yay!!!!!!!

Celebrate?  The slaughter of past, the slaughter now, the slaughter that will be. Perhaps a day of remembrance –from the human slaughter — why not start with the native people and the “benevolent” pilgrims — to the tormenting and painful lives and deaths of those who rightfully share this planet with us is more appropriate.

Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight. ~Albert Schweitzer

A lovely soul, allowing herself to be greeted with a soft stroking of her feathers at her new, safe home, Animal Acres.

 

Turkeys (as are all birds) are dear to my heart, and this time of year is, for me, not so much celebratory as it is a day of reflection. When you’ve actually met a turkey, you would be hard pressed to ever imagine consuming one. They are utterly beautiful creatures, inside and out, and will, like so many animals, walk right up to you. A turkey (if rehabilitated and no longer fearful of human abuse) will sit in your lap and allow you to pet her feathers. One of the most joyous experiences of my life.

Celebrate and make it at least a bit “happier” Thanksgiving by not consuming torture and pain of one suffering innocent body into your body. You don’t need that: Your body doesn’t need to take in that horror. Consume fresh, nutritous food, and allow that others are  here, as you, to live their lives to the fullest.

Please, let them be.

 

 

Take a little time to read about turkeys and other feathered friends at United Poultry Concerns.

Scroll down to “For Jane” if you’d like to read a poem tribute.

Peace to all!

 

Strix

The Purloining of the Pomegranate…

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Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Purple Pomes.

A Peck of Purple Pomes, Peter Piper Picked.

If Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Purple Pomes,

How’d he Purge the Purple Pulpy Pearls?

Hm. A precarious pickle, indeed.

Well, there is more than one way to dislodge the snug little arils; however, the following is my personal fave I learned from an old Martha Stewart show.

I would have made a video, but my third arm is at the dry cleaners; so pictures will have to do.

Cut through the skin about 1/4 inch to start and rotate the fruit around to slice only through the rind — like scoring. You don’t want to cut through when you cut around, you’ll end up crushing the arils and losing juice  (remember the first cut through to halve cake layers? Like that)

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cut pome by scoring through the peel only, all the way around its center

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When finished cutting all the way around, simply twist the pomegranate gently within your palms and it will halve nicely.

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Twist pome gently for a clean break

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Now, place a deep bowl in your sink and, using the back of a large knife, or, better a large wood spoon or spatula and holding the pome cut side down, give the skin-side some whacks. Here I’m using my silicone spatulas (which I like; they’re heat resistant, too, and come in various sizes).

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over a bowl, tap the pomegranate

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…Tap the sides, and all over with moderate force

And, the arils pop out nicely. You can get some splashing — some times  more than others, but it’s all good in the end! you’ll see.

Tapping it into your hand, yields better results — you’ll get less splashing the surrounding area, too, and the arils fall through your fingers

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Tap the pomegranate into your palm

*By the way, using a deep bowl and placing in the sink like this, I’ve never gotten any pome juice on my clothes or had any splash in my eyes (unlike lemon…why does that always happen?!); however, if you’re wary, wear an apron 🙂

Into the palm, go the pomes, down to the bowl through finger holes

So, hey, check ‘er out:

Nice and cleanly removed arils. Tip: Stud with cloves and hang to dry (or dry in dehydrator)

Even cleaned out, they are stunning! I think I’ll stud some with cloves, and for the holiday 🙂

Here you see you don’t lose a thing using this method.

check out the juice! (This much juice collection is because I did many pomegranates at once)

Voila! A plethora of perfectly pilfered plums! 😀

Well, I’ll be ding donged!

Found the vid; Martha shows how to!



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*She shows it in the first 2 minutes, so you don’t need to watch the whole thing*

That isn’t the show I saw, and I see on this epidode she scores it in quarters — good idea for the bigger globes! Gotta remember that. Here’s another way to remove arils.

Nutrient rich, pomegranates are worthy of your attention! In last month’s Huffington Post, Dr. Fuhrman. found pomegranates worthy of mention, referring to them as one of 5 foods to be, “medicine” Wow! Food = medicine. That’s pretty dang powerful: Read more on just how powerful.

Pomes have lotsa polyphenols (whoa, concords are loaded too!)

Only precaution: while pome juice is worth drinking, one can just as well consume it via the seeds: That age-old question: to eat the seeds or spit?! (did anyone ever chew the shells of sunflower seeds?! Was that a children’s thing or do adults do that? Hee .) I’ve read there is some nutritional benefit of ingesting  the seeds — I don’t know for sure, I imagine so, since pomegranate oil is highly prized –  however, I have no problem consuming them. The oil, beneficial or  not, would be in insignificant amounts anyway. According to the California Pomegranate Council (funny) the seeds are edible, and it’s simply a matter of taste as to whether one should consume them. As well, the pith of some fruits appear to contain benefits from what I’ve read…Personally, I love the pith of some fruits, especially citrus! Most say it’s bitter, but I find it “sweet”; the bitter is usually the pith closest to the skin. the closer to the fruit, the milder. When juiced or blended, it adds creaminess. But, that’s just me

Old pic of pomegranate ice cream .I made… think I used macadamias and cashews, Oy!

So anyway, fruit juice should be limited. Juice — too much of it — can be like a sugar bomb; plus, one can miss out on a LOT of the valuable nutrients left behind, while tossing the fiber. Now, if you want to waste money, get extra calories with minimal satiety, AND minimal benefits, have at it. BUT, pomegranate juice can be an exception —  with guidelines! Because of its value it can — and for some, should — be  a regular part of the diet; but one doesn’t need a ton of it a day — I recall reading a recommendation for a quarter cup per day being enough. Good thing ’cause it ain’t cheap, no matter how you get it. 🙂

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If you don’t want/cant get juice regulary, then get some through LDL Protect, a formulation anyone can take who wants the benefits of plant sterols and phytochemicals. Read about powerful plant sterols, pomegrantes, and LDL Protect, HERE.

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Pomegranate Snowcone!

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It can be incorporated into recipes, as well, but stay away from processed stuff;  use it fresh! A couple examples: Ice cream. Imagine fresh out-of-season pome sorbet during summer! Pop some cubes into lemonade or limeade…mmmm. How about a slushy or popsicle? Add the arils to grains, salads and morning cereals. Fruit leathers; pomegranate milk; yummy dressings…it’s endless, really. Oh, I make a mean ETL sangria

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Now, how to punctiliously pick that peck of  persnickety pears without peril:

Hm.. Let us proceed  prudently..

Heavy! That’s a general rule: the heavier, the juicier. No bruises; firm; tight skin; early and mid-winter are best of the season. Skin color not as important, but I do like to get the deepest red if all other requirements for freshness are met. No soft spots, or cracks; wrinkling is not a good sign.

There are varieties of pomegranates,  here is a “white pomegranate” I was lucky to find.

The site says the white are sweeter! I don’t recall, actually, any difference. Hmph. The Japanese one at the bottom of the page looks interesting. It says it’s sort of tart. Maybe that’s the one I tried…though, again, I don’t recall it being “tart” either.  I wonder if it has less phytos than the dark? If so, perhaps it contains something else as its advantage?

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Thawed pomegranate: Squeeze for juice

How to juice?

(The skin should not be juiced) Well, again, there are a few ways — I discovered that freezing whole or halved pomegranates, like I do with ginger, for example, is surprisingly efficient at juicing. On those rushed days, I’ve  thrown them into the freezer 🙂  As in the photo above, simply thaw and squeeze a half. Lots of pressing over a strainer will render more; Twist and squeeze through a cloth or crush with a potato masher if you don’t want to squeeze it with your bare hands.

You can pulse in a blender or a food processor, then strain; grind it through a food mill; squeeze the arils, a halve, or quarter through ahand-held citrus juicer (not my choice — messy!); use a reamer (I LOVE those vintage reamers!); or  run the the arils through your juicer.

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Generally,

…”One medium pomegranate weighs about 9 ounces and yields about 5 ounces of fruit (3/4 cup) and 4 ounces (1/2 cup) of juice.”

*TipS: Frozen arils are great through the juicer. As well, the arils, frozen or fresh, help clean out the screen of the hard-to-remove pulp that’s often left behind when juicing leafy greens for you to scrub off (this is especially true with the single auger style juicers.)

Run them through last or almost last.

*Tip* (A bottle brush , if it doesn’t come with your juicer is worth buying for cleaning your juicer parts – found at hardware stores)

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Storage:

Whole pomegranates store for months under fridger,(and can sit out up to a couple of weeks, depending on how fresh they were when purchased/picked), but best to eat soon. Freezing is a great alternative.

I like storing food in wax bags before placing into any plastic. These Natural Value brand wax bags are a must in my kitchen — one for the “Favorite Things” list 🙂  (I get them at the market). Parchment, is another, and I use it for this purpose too.

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Then seal them in larger plastic bags for longer storage:

You can store the juice in the fridge — I’d not for more than a couple days; or freeze, well sealed for enjoyment during the off season — mm, that is fabulous, by the way. I purchase pomes throughout  the height of the season, but also the end of season, juice the whole lot of them, freeze them and never have to pay for the very expensive, heated and processed, and preserved, who-knows-how-old bottled pomegranate juice. If mine is a few months old, but fresh-frozen,  I’m better with that :D.

Ice trays are a fabulous way

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Here you see the difference when manually juicing the arils — the dark — and running the arils through a juicer:

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*No biggie: the juicing of the seeds is just fine. I ran it by Dr. Fuhrman to be sure, and he said it’s all good 🙂

*Conveniently portioned, it’s nice to just reach in the freezer for some of the magic 😉

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Enjoy pomegranates however you like them; they’ll be gone from markets much too soon!

Strix

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