Monthly Archives: February 2014

The Perfect Breakfast Smoothie

Smoothies are a delicious and healthy way to start your day.  So we thought we’d share our favorite breakfast smoothie with you!

smoothie

We credit this recipe to “All Smoothie Recipes”.

Pears in a Breakfast Smoothie
Ingredients:

1 cup granola

1 cup milk, you can also use almond milk

1 pear, cored

½ banana

Ice as needed

Directions:
Blend in your blender until smooth and enjoy!

Check out our market place, where you can have organic produce boxes (and some other great items, like coffee and granola), delivered straight to your doorstep!

Stay organically connected!

John, Tom & Reece
Pacific Coast Harvest
“We Buy Local First”
206.455.8959
www.pacificcoastharvest.com

Something New About Carrots

We all know that eating well takes a lot of discipline. Here some helpful facts about carrots to motivate that choice between pizza and the fresh veggies in your box!

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According to the CDC 11.5% of adults in the U.S. suffer from cardiovascular disease. That’s 26.5 MILLION people.

Luckily, a new 10-year study from the Netherlands has some encouraging news. Published in the British Journal of Nutrition, the study tracked the diet of 20,069 men and women. Researchers categorized food by color, and found that those who ate “orange/yellow” colored vegetables on a regular basis saw a reduction in heart disease by 32%!

So, what’s in carrots that is so heart healingly wonderful?

Fiber

How, you may ask, does fiber benefit the heart? Well, There are two types of dietary fiber, soluble and insoluble. Both are necessary for your body, but soluble fiber lowers LDL cholesterol, reducing plaque in your arteries and making it easier for blood to circulate through your body. One≥ cup of chopped carrots contains, roughly, 14% of your daily fiber value.

00279Vitamin A

A commonly held belief is that carrots will help you see well. If you’re like 75% of most Americans, you need glasses. While eating a carrot won’t give you night vision, it definitely will help the overall health of your eye. What makes carrots so good for your eyes is the extremely high content of vitamin A. And I when I say high content, I mean high. One cup of chopped carrots has 427% of your daily value of Vitamin A. Crazy, I know, but true. When eaten, vitamin A is converted to retinol, which strengthens the membrane around your eyes. This membrane helps light travel through your eyes and gets the correct message to your brain about what you’re seeing.

00311Antioxidants

Carrots have so many different kinds of antioxidants you need a chemistry degree to pronounce all of those words (hydroxycinnamic acid and anthocyanindins, for example)! What’s important to remember is that antioxidants help your body dispense of free radicals, which helps decrease cancer.

Moral of the story is: eat your carrots! They’re really tasty and they might just help you live longer. That’s enough to get me to start eating more of them. They are tasty raw, so you can really get all the nutrients from them. They also go really well with ranch.

Happy Eating!

Kale Salad with Mandarin and Grapefruit

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Ingredients

1 small bunch kale

1 mandarin, peeled and sliced

1 grapefruit, peeled and sliced

1 small shallot, sliced very thin

Sprouts (optional)

Olive oil and salt to taste

Directions

1. Remove stems from kale. Wash and dry in a salad spinner and tear into bite sized pieces. Lightly massage kale to soften it.

2. Add grapefruit and mandarin slices, reserving a few slices from each to juice. Add shallots and sprouts.

3. Drizzle with olive oil and squeeze juice from remaining slices of grapefruit and/or mandarin. Sprinkle with salt to taste.

Serves 2

Presidents’ Day Pie

Today is Presidents’ day, which I think is a great excuse to make a pie. Apple pie is synonymous with every patriotic American holiday, which means that it is quite a cliche and an often over done recipe. I still feel like making a pie, but I really don’t want to eat another blah apple pie.

apple-pie

This one looks really good, but it still tastes like sticky cinnamon.

There are lots of options for jazzing up your apple pie. Lots of recipes will zest things up with ginger, cheddar, dried cherries, caramel, etc. They are tasty but even those seem over done. So I decided to try to come up with something myself.

I thought about what kind of apple pie I did want to make and decided to try to adapt the Bourbon Glazed Pears recipe I made a few weeks ago into a pie filling. Except of course with apples. Here is what I came up with

Jon’s Bourbon Apple Pie

Ingredients:

4 large apples (I used the Braeburn apples from my box and two Organic Granny Smith apples to add some tartness).

2 Tbsp Butter

6 Garlic Cloves

2 Tbsp Bourbon (Optional Substitution: 1Tsp vanilla extract + 2 Tsp water) (really don’t recommend substituting)

1 Cup Ricotta Cheese

1/3 Cup White Sugar

2 Tbsp Sea Salt

2 Tsp Apple Cider Vinegar

1 Dash Fresh Ground Black Pepper

1 Egg Yolk

2 Tbsp Honey

Crust

I used this crust recipe and it worked well Perfect Pie Crust.

Directions

Make your pie crust first because it needs to chill in the fridge for an hour. It is really pretty fast to make though. Preheat your oven at 425 degrees.

1. Core, slice and peel the apples, finely chop 4 garlic cloves

2. Melt butter in a frying pan on medium high heat

3. Remove pan from heat, and add bourbon or the substitute. It will pop and splash so watch out! Add garlic and return to heat.

5.  Cook 1 minute

6. Add apples and cook for about 5 minutes. The apples were a lot more resilient and didn’t cook down nearly as quickly as the pears had, which is what I was hoping. I really didn’t want the apples to get soft, just to pick up the flavors of the garlic and bourbon.

7. Put the apples and all juices from the pan into a bowl. Add 2/3 cup ricotta cheese, 1  cup white sugar, 1 1/2 Tbsp sea salt, 1 Tsp apple cider vinegar, 1 dash fresh ground black pepper and mix up with your hands.

8. Roll out the bottom crust and place it in the pie pan. Place the filling in the pan and put the top crust on. Cut some holes in the top crust and brush on the egg yolk. Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes at 425 degrees.

Topping

9. Mix up 1/3 cup ricotta cheese, 2 Tbsp honey 1 Tsp apple cider vinegar and 1/2 Tbsp sea salt and place in the freezer for about an hour.

Once the pie is golden brown on the top and it smells really good in your house it’s done. Let cool for about 10 minutes. Add a dollop of your honey ricotta and enjoy. I didn’t leave my ricotta in the freezer long enough and it melted very quickly.

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Overall I enjoyed it. The consistency was good. Not too soft with a pleasant crispness from the Granny Smiths. The garlic was surprising and almost distracting at first, but though I might reduce how much I use in the future, I don’t think it was too overpowering. As you might suspect, with that much ricotta this is a very rich piece of pie. It had a lot of creaminess to it but seemed to be lacking a fresh flavor. I will definitely use the recipe again but I will probably adjust the filling somewhat and I think I will add fresh crushed chocolate mint to the chilled ricotta. For all that, it was definitely different than any apple pie I’ve ever eaten and my family and friends enjoyed it as much as I did!

Hope you enjoyed your presidents’ day and a pie.

It’s time to add a little Toffee to your order…

We have just tasted the BEST. TOFFEE. EVER!

So we decided to add it to our market place for YOU… just in time for Valentine’s Day!

Toffee in Pan

It’s locally made by our friends at a specialty food company called “Together,” and so we present to you “Together Toffee.”

Together creates opportunities to savor moments and express gratitude by creating delicious foods, and their first product is Toffee!

The best thing about Together Toffee is its simplicity and all natural, gluten-free ingredients.

4 Flavors

The sweet cream butter is directly from Oregon.  Ten pound Guittard chocolate bars are shaved to sandwich the buttery toffee on either side.  The final garnishes are freshly roasted and salted nuts, brought in from other Western states including Arizona and California.

Just delicious. 

Click here to add it to your box this week (perfect for Valentine’s Day!). and enjoy every last bite.

Stay organically connected!

John, Tom & Reece
Pacific Coast Harvest
“We Buy Local First”
206.455.8959

Lots of Layers

To know one’s onion is to know one’s stuff.
– Old English Idiom

It is COLD outside in Washington! I hope everyone has been staying safe and warm in this snowy cold weather.

OnionYou might be wondering how, in these temperatures, can anything edible grow? However, there is a root vegetable that has endured many climates to become a foundational staple of almost every diet in the world: The ONION.

Onions are incredibly resilient and durable, which is why they are considered to be one of the first cultivated crops in the world. The Onion has been around so long, (approx. 5000 years!) horticulturists aren’t exactly sure of its origin. They hypothesize it originated in central Asia, Pakistan, and/or Iraq but really no one is sure. For it’s time, it was quite the progressive vegetable.

The Egyptians believed its anatomy represented eternal life, and included the onion in many feasts and altars to their gods. Egyptologists have even found them in mummies tombs, including Ramses IV.pile of onions

Early century doctors from all around the world used the onion to cure all sorts of aliments. Pompeii’s own Pliny the Elder used the onion to cure a plethora of ailments, like toothaches, insomnia and mouth-sores.

The Greeks made their Olympic Athletes drink onion juice before competitions, and rub onion oil over their bodies. They believed it made them better athletes because it lightened the balance of the blood. Interesting for this years winter Olympics, onions are a very common vegetable in many traditional Russian dishes.

876096_77650520You would be hard pressed to find a country that doesn’t use onions and the United States and Washington state are no exceptions. Here in Washington we grow a large portion of the countries onions and some of the best onions. In fact onions and a particular species of onion have put the Washington city of Walla Walla on the map.

So enjoy some onions this week. They have been a healthy staple for thousands of years of human history and are still delightfully tasty today. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

Here’s another kind of Super Bowl!

Of course we are all still buzzing about the 12th Man and our Seahawks’ amazing win at the 2014 Super Bowl XLVIII!

seahawks win!

Not to mention the 700,000+ fans that celebrated with the Hawks in downtown Seattle on Wednesday. We’ve certainly made history, and it has been AWESOME feeling the enthusiasm all around town.

We thought we’d celebrate by sharing another kind of “Super Bowl”… one of our favorite soup recipes!

Check it out and let us know what you think:

chicken-vegetable-soup

A comforting soup, featuring fresh vegetables, herbs and organic chicken. Feel free to use any seasonal vegetables and herbs you have on hand– it’s a great way to get rid of anything that’s starting to wilt in your fridge! I’d recommend making a big batch over the weekend, and storing the extras for a quick evening meal during the week. It stores well in the fridge or freezer.

Ingredients
• 1 tablespoon butter, or coconut oil
• ½ a yellow onion, chopped
• 2 large carrots, chopped (about 1 cup)
• 3 celery stalks, chopped (about 1 cup)
• 2 garlic cloves, minced
• 1 cup fresh green beans, chopped into 1-inch pieces
• 4 sprigs of fresh thyme
• 1 pound organic chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch chunks
• 5-6 cups of water, as needed to cover
• 1½ teaspoons fine sea salt, plus more to taste
• black pepper

Instructions

1. In a large stockpot, melt the butter over medium heat and gently saute the onion, garlic and chicken for about 5 minutes, until the onion is tender.

2. Add the carrots, celery and green beans, thyme leaves, and enough water to just cover the vegetables (about 5-6 cups). Bring the water to a boil, then reduce heat and allow to simmer for 20 minutes.

3. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve piping hot!

Stay organically connected! And… GO HAWKS!!

John, Tom & Reece

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Pacific Coast Harvest
“We Buy Local First”
206.455.8959

Health and Beets

Here at Pacific Coast Harvest, we care about what we eat. One of the biggest reasons we support local organic produce is not only to foster sustainable practices, but because it is simply better for you.

Towards that end, this week I’m focusing on something new: nutrition.

We know our customers are invested in being informed consumers. We hope you’ve appreciated learning about other veggies we’ve featured in the past. To start us off here are some good things to know about beets!

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Beets have a history dating back to the Middle Ages, where they were primarily used for medicinal purposes. It wasn’t until the French started cooking with them in the 1800s that this root vegetable began to become a popular food.

There are quite a variety of beets, as you have probably seen in your boxes, the most common being golden or red beets. No matter what the type, beets are a super vegetable that if included in your diet, has a myriad of health benefits.

·      For starters, it cleans your liver, which cleans your blood by filtering out toxins and nutrients.

·      Beets also contain about 14% of the manganese you need in your diet. This mineral will keep your brain sharp and your nervous system functioning well.

·      Thirdly, betaine. It’s incredible. According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, “the growing body of evidence shows that betaine is an important nutrient for the prevention of chronic disease.” Beets contain around 175mg of betaine, which decreases harmful substances in your blood vessels, and thereby promotes a healthy cardiovascular system. Who doesn’t want that?

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·      Got hypertension issues? Try beet juice. According to the American Heart Association, consuming around 500 milliliters of beet juice will quickly reduce hypertension. The effects can even last up to 24 hours!

·      Lastly, for all you runners out there, you’ll love this next fact. Saint Louis University published a recent study that eating beets can actually make you run faster. They found the nitrate released in cooked beets actually helped some runners shave off 41 seconds in the last mile! If you’re curious, here’s the link to the actual study: http://www.andjrnl.org/article/S2212-2672(11)01948-4/abstract

Now that you have been thoroughly schooled on the advantages of beets, you might be wondering, “but how do I make them not taste like dirt?” For starters, check out Marshall’s Recipe and try our Roasted Golden Beets and Apple Salad.

Enjoy, and CONGRATULATIONS SEAHAWKS!