How to make Braised Red (Purple) Cabbage !

What you need

 1Apple

 .5 Red Cabbage

2 cloves Garlic

 1 tsp Turmeric

 1 tsp Cinnamon

If you like some heat ¼ teaspoon of cayenne

 .5 large Red onion

¼ cup Apple cider vinegar

 2 cups Water

 To taste Salt

Pot – with a lid

Cutting board

Knife

Stirring implement

One of my favorite foods is red cabbage and I love it have it with meat balls! Yum!! So here is how I make it.

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Prep all your vegetables –

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Slice /chop or food process all the vegetables – This is a personal choice as it all depends on how you want to eat it and how big you want the pieces – just as note though if it is sliced by the food processor you will get a slightly faster cook due to its size being smaller and more uniform.

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Lightly sauté the red onion in some oil, then add your apples and garlic and stir those in for a few minutes.

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Add all of your cabbage prepped to your liking with the spices.

Add the apple cider vinegar and water (sometimes I also add some apple juice if I have some on hand)

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Bring to a simmer then put the lid on and let cook on Med. Heat until the cabbage is tender. * This dish can take a white to make depending on how much you make.  I like to take the lid off 10 minutes before the end to let some of the liquid evaporate.

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Hope everyone enjoys this as much as I do!

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Please remember to be food safe and smart in your kitchen !

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Minestrone Soup! Hearty and yummy a side or the main course kind of soup!

When I make soups to freeze and  set myself and husband up for a successful meal this is one of the first soups that I love to get ready!.  As you will find out most of my soups and freezer meals are all pretty simple and side with the comfort foods. These are great and healthy and can be transformed at dinner time to a few different things if the soup you made is not quite what you want in that moment.

Lets start with the basics – how to make this soup!

***Please be careful when cutting and cooking food – please do not leave your stove unattended while it is on ! ***

You will need!

  • Pot
  • Cutting board
  • Knife
  • Peeler
  • Wooden spoon ( you can use a spatula or regular spoon just be careful they do heat up)
  • Bowls or container to put prep in
  • Can opener

Food you will need!You can add as much or or as little vegetables as you like but I like a hearties soup. 

  •  .5 Tomato paste
  • 1 Can of mixed beans ( you can use dried just make sure you leave a good amount of time to re hydrate them prior to cooking)
  •  4 small Carrots
  •  1 small Zucchini
  •  1 White Onion
  •  3 cloves Garlic
  • 1 L Water
  • 1 L Vegetable stock / vegetable bouillon cube / your favorite vegetable stock base mix.
  •  2 sticks Celery
  • 1 Stewed tomatoes (you can make your own but if you don’t want to canned /jarred works just as well)
  • Salt/pepper/dried basil/turmeric
  • Pasta or russet potato ( if you plan on freezing this for later – it is best to leave these separate from your soup – I tend to leave them out until the day of)

So let’s hit up step one!

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Cut up all of your vegetables – start with our onions and garlic as those you will need first and you can start cooking. You want to cut all these vegetables to a Med dice or if wondering about the size so that you can fit 2-3 pieces on your soup spoon.

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Heat up your pot with approx. 2 tablespoons (I use coconut oil – but olive or canola is okay too) – have your oven on about med and leave it for a minute to heat up. Then add your onion and garlic and saute until your onions are translucent then add your carrots/celery.

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Add tomato paste and cook for about 2-3 min on med low heat to just cook out the tomato paste a little bit while stirring.

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After this it’s time to add your water and stock base. – Then add your beans (make sure you rinse these prior to use) and stewed tomatoes. Add your seasoning spices about 1 teaspoon of each to start – remember you can always add spices to things but it is really hard to correct adding too much!

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Stir everything together quite well and then add your zucchini and turn your stove if on low up to med.

You are going to want to let this to simmer and mingle together for approx. 10 – 15 min. I plan on freezing mine so I go by 10 min so that when I re heat my vegetables do not become mushy.

Taste your soup and see if you need any more seasoning. Add the seasoning and stir well then taste.

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Ladle the soup into the desired container to freeze in and make sure you leave at least ½ – 1 inch to allow the soup to expand when it freezes.

When you are ready to eat this – you can either have pasta or potatoes it’s really up to you what you like or neither – you can use your favorite pasta cook it and once cooked either use as is if small or cut up it depends on how you feel. Put the noodles into your bowl and pour the hot soup on top!

Now if you like the potato route you can cut / peel your potatoes into the same size as your vegetables and then cook in a pot with water (the water should just cover the potatoes)

Cook until they just slide off a fork or knife tip and then do the same as the pasta.

If you decide that you need a little protein you can bake some chicken /sausage/pork….– chop it up small and toss it in with your soup.  I tend to leave mine veggie until I am ready to eat it because I never know who might come over for dinner.

I hope you all enjoy and if you have any questions please comment and I will try and answer what I can!

Please remember cooking is meant to be fun but please be safe and food safe smart.  Once your soup is finished bring it to room temperature or colder as fast as possible before putting it in your fridge or freezer(hot food will bring up the temperature in your fridge and can cause food to be in an unsafe temperature). You can do this by making an ice bath ( roasting pans or clean sinks work well) and setting your soup in its container or pot into it and stirring regularly until cool.

When re heating your soup bring it to a full boil prior to eating !

Thank you !

Argg! Fruit Flies !!!!

Fruit flies are really annoying! Small pesky little flies that seem take over your fruit bowl or kitchen! Now that Vancouver has the mandatory composting I feel like I am fighting the never ending battle of fruit flies in my apartment. We have 2 compost containers, one container for food to be composted inside your apartment which is quite small and gets emptied into our one that is on our patio which is a bit bigger that gets brought to our buildings compost bin when needed.  Add on top of that a hot dry summer it’s a recipe for an invasion!

Since this issue has arisen I have been looking for new ways to battle the little invaders to the dismay of my cat whole spends her time stalking them around the apartment trying to catch them.  Now there is the basic housekeeping cleaning that helps. Making sure counters are cleaned, no food scraps are lying around or in the sink.

I find the sink to be a good place to see if I have fruit flies or drain flies! You can tell if you have these vs. fruit flies by putting the sticky side of tape down over your drain over night and in the morning seeing if you have flies stuck to it. Your drains can be a safe haven for drain flies… EW right? They also let me know there were things you could do to prevent this from happening. Try not to dump food scraps down your drain (unless you have a garburator) these little bits of food get stuck and make place them to live and breed.  So the other way to clean your drain is to pour hot water with some bleach down your drain. This will also clean out any smell your drain may have. I know this is not the best for the environment, you can also use baking soda with hot water and a small amount of vinegar, this method will clean your drain as well. Now that you know you have fruit flies and not other little pests and your sink drain smells fresh the battle can continue.

Sponges and clothes need to be cleaned too! They are cleaning your surfaces and can get quite dirty if not tended too. The last thing you want while trying to get rid of these flies is to find them on your cleaning implements. Every once and a while I give my cleaning implements a good clean to. This way they are ready for action and I know sooner than later when they need to be replaced.

Time to set up a trap! All the cleaning will not get rid of the flies you already have, you want to deal with your current pests. The best method that has worked for me is apple cider vinegar (don’t use your expensive one buy the cheaper one for this) in a jar with a paper made funnel. You can make this with a small old jar or container.

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First fill the jar with vinegar -quite full

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Make a cone out of paper that will be wide enough to sit in the jar – make sure you cut a very small hole at the bottom

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Trim and tape the outside edges to make sure it is sealed

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Place in area where you have your largest infestation and wait!IMG_4037

They will fly in because they are attracted to the smell of the apple cider vinegar. You can set up a few of these if you have a few hot spots around your home or kitchen.

Now that we have these set up its time to clean! Yes that dreaded thing you really didn’t want me to say! I had to do it too to deal with ours. Get out your favorite kitchen cleaner and start the process. Taking everything off the counter and giving it a good wipe down, cleaning your fruit bowl and any other container that you leave out with food in. Wiping down the walls plus your garbage can and composting bins inside and out, after all of this not only your kitchen will be really clean but you will also notice a large drop in your fruit flies.

So here are the tips for dealing with fruit flies:

Try not to keep a lot of food out on the counter for too long

Clean the areas where you prep food right away

Set up fruit fly traps – If you search online there are many more than just the vinegar trap but it’s my favorite.

Don’t leave dirty dishes in the sink too long!

Good Luck in your battle against the annoying fruit fly and I hope this helped!