Monday, November 9, 2009

Bailey's Buying Club - Ordering is now open for November 23, 2009

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Hi Folks,

How is the cooking and eating going out there?  If you're like me, you have good intentions that don't always come to fruition. Friday I was going to make Vegetarian Groundnut Stew from the Simply in Season. It is full of winter vegetables with a peanut sauce.  Late naps combined with working on gift baskets for the buying club and then my seven year old son nearly passing out in my arms after a hard fall, all led to the frozen lasagna going into the oven with a word of thanks to Anna and her mom Mary at The Nutty Bakers. I was so shaken up by it that I couldn't think straight to parent and cook and discuss gift baskets at the same time.  The good news is that Foster is FINE and the lasagna was DELICIOUS.  Mona (my four year old) did not like the mushrooms in it - and those were my favourite part. 

I'm really happy with the quality of the prepared foods from Anna and Mary.  We have more options from them this month such as tortière. I did not know what this was before (I grew up in Indiana so please forgive my ignorance about Québécois culture and am delighted to have tasted it.  Mona loved it and begged for more.  I like the herbs or spices that are in there that I can't place. I just looked up a recipe for tortiere on-line.  Get this!  It has cinnamon, cloves, parsley and summer savory in it! What a combination.  The website said it is a favourite for Christmas Eve dinners. Okay, now I know.

I hope you are getting outside in this amazingly balmy late-Fall weather.  My plan for Saturday was to cage the blueberries so that the rabbits don't eat the plants in the Winter and the squirrels don't eat the berries in the summer, let the hens out to roam and scratch, and roast hot dogs over a backyard fire.  If I can tear myself away from the outdoors, I'll make the ground nut stew. I have a butternut squash with a spot of mold that is begging to be used in the stew.  If you don't have the Simply In Season cookbook, it is at the 10,000 Villages store on King Street in uptown Waterloo.  It is a very helpful book for when I'm feeling uninspired about cooking with root vegetables again.  I just turn to the Winter section and choose a recipe to try.  If I can't tear myself away from the outdoors, I'll pull a container of borscht out of the freezer.  It seems to taste even better after freezing.

So far so good on the food from last buying club holding out for a month.  I shouldn't get too cocky, though, because I just realized that I have 17 days to go!  That's over half of a month!  I think that the carrots, apples, cabbage, potatoes, sweet potatoes and onions will hold out.  I've been harvesting a late planting of spinach from my garden for lovely spinach salads.  I find with my two and four year old salads don't go over as well as a bowl of spinach that we then model how to eat it "like a rabbit."  Those of you who are fans of proper etiquette will not appreciate this.  Basically we stuff handfuls of spinach leaves into our mouths with great gusto and much "Mmmming" and gushing over how delicious it is.  Foster joins us in this and it must be convincing because at supper today the younger two joined in.  Sometimes I "market" the spinach as a "leaf roll" that I roll into little tight at the table and then hand to a toddler.

How is your local food holding out?  Have you found places to buy more when you've run out?  If you're ever in a pickle, the Gerbers will deliver an order to KW if you place an order of $100 or more.  Here is their website:

Parsnips and Eva
Eva, the farmer who grew us those amazing sweet little carrots this summer, now has parsnips for us. She would've had them for us in October but she broke her foot and that has slowed her down.  Her daughters and her are harvesting them for us in November and then they take them to their neighours, Paul and Selema Bowman, to wash them in their big vegetable washer that they just bought this year. If you've ever washed vegetables for hours in bins of cold water, you'll know how SIGNIFICANT it is to have a machine that does most of it for you.  It saves a lot of hours of painfully cold hands.  I'm working on talking Eva into planting twice the carrots for us that she did and storing them so we can buy them through the Winter.  Her neighbours have said that her carrots are the best-tasting around.

New Baker from Stratford
I'm excited to announce a new baker from Stratford, Lindsay of Lindsay's Bakery.  She comes highly recommended from Antony John (as did the Rundles Chef, Neil. Antony knows his food!) who will deliver her food to us along with his food.  Check out her website at We will not be offering ALL of her goodies this month but many.  Look for her whole wheat crackers, butter tarts, granola bars, biscotti, lemon squares, and cookies. She uses some local ingredients including frozen local fruit!  She is going to contact Oak Manor about using their flours and grains. I have not tasted her baked goods yet but am looking forward to it. I'm intrigued with the granola bars.  Let's support Lindsay as she works to use more local ingredients.  Let me know what you think of her foods.

Gift Baskets for Christmas or Illness - or Just Because
By the time you pick-up your order, Christmas will be in 32 days.  Have you thought about giving a gift basket of local food? You can assemble your own or save yourself the extra effort and buy one of the gift baskets that we've created.  Emily and I have been scheming for weeks about what to put into these baskets. We have five baskets varieties for you to choose from. We will offer these again for the December 21 pick-up. Check out all the details at:

Buy in Bulk and Save Money
We will be offering full cases (12) of preserves from Country Flavour and Erma so that you can stock your pantry and save money.  We can sell cases for a deal because we do not have to put hours of work into inventorying it - we just move it directly from Country Flavour to you. So, if you know you like a certain pickle or jam or you know you'll use 12 jars of stewed tomatoes by August (or you want to give them away as gifts), then buy the case and save yourself money over the next 8 months.  Imagine having a box or two of apple pearsauce (now available!) in your basement to pull out for a healthy dessert (with cinnamon on top) or to put on top of granola or on yogourt.  We eat 2-3 jars of apple pearsauce a week.  The extra exciting thing about the apple pearsauce is that the pears were not sprayed at all and the apples were sprayed about 1/4 the normal sprays at the very beginning of the growing season.

Plan C - The Power of Community
Do you want to join others in KW who are raising awareness and excitement about the joys of sustainable living?  Some of us realize that we won't have cheap fuel for much longer and rather than panic when that happens, we want to change how we live now so that we are resilient and ready for the changes coming.  If you want to find out more about the people working on this and how we can do this together, join me in attending a movie and conversation at the Princess Twin on Thursday.  The film shows the very inspiring example of how Cuba ramped up sustainable agriculture when they no longer had access to cheap fuels.  Here is more info:

Plan C and The Power of Community
An Evening with the Author, the Film, and the Director.

Lecture, Film, Q&A - with Pat Murphy and Faith Morgan
Thursday November 12th

Princess Twin Cinema, 46 King Street North, Waterloo    

Doors Open at 6:45 Talk at 7:15, Film at 7:45 followed by Q&A session.
Addmission $2

Foods to Look For This Month
  • Maple Tarts - I talked Erma into making us maple tarts. I had to convince her that we really do want REAL maple syrup for the tarts - no corn syrup or sugar to cut the costs.
  • Freestone Peaches in a Jar - These are peaches from Eva and Rene's farm (Palatine) where they raise soft fruits with very few chemicals.  They have a different taste and texture than the peaches from Country Flavour.  These peaches are freestone which means that the pits separate easily from the flesh.  The clingstone peaches that Country Flavour cans are MUCH firmer when processed and each pit needs to be cut out rather than pulled out by hand.  The result is that the freestone peaches are a softer texture.  I prefer the freestone. I know others who prefer the clingstone.  How about you get a jar of both and do a taste test?
  • Apple Pearsauce - We offered this last year and it was a big hit. Many people have not tasted this amazing combination of apple and pear (about 50/50).  This year the sauce is thicker than last year and lovely. The ingredients are: apples and pears. Period. They just use steam to cook them.
  • more...
Remember to buy enough to last until December 21.  See you November 23!
In gratitude for health and good food,
Bailey's Local Foods
P.S. We can use your fruit baskets and jars from preserves again if you return them.


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