Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Springs Enticing Menu

Thoughts of food and food for thought...spring brings them both to the front and center of our mind...and our table.

My food for thought this spring is "action."  Regardless what areas of our life need attention, until we act, nothing will change.

I don't know many families who are not dealing with major issues of weight, illness, disease, and emotional stressors that leave them exhausted and overwhelmed at the end of the day.

A very real truth is; All of these issues can, and many do, come from foods that we have come to depend on for our daily nutrition.
But, alas....the standard fare in the average supermarket today is far from nutritious...in fact, it is tainted with chemicals, genetically modified ingredients, and high powered artificial sweeteners that keep our systems constantly out of balance and in a state of slow deterioration.

Action needed.....education and application. Know from whence your food comes and how it is processed. Read and understand labels.
Research your favorite companies to learn how they operate...pay close attention to what they 'don't ' say.

More and more companies are on board with healthy and safe foods.

If you need or want links to my favorite companies...just ask.
Now...on to one of my favorite ingredients...Gingerroot~

Ginger, when fresh, has a much different taste than the powdered version. This beige, knobby root has a bite, a sweetness and woodsy aroma all its own.
Gingerroot has a tan skin with white to creamy yellow flesh.

When purchasing gingerroot, look for withered skin or softness to the feel...both are indications of 'age.' Firm, unpeeled gingerroot will keep for 3 to 4 weeks in the refrigerator.

Peel only the amount you plan to use, wrap the remainder in foil and place in a storage bag in the bottom crisper of the frig.

Slice the peeled root into 'coin' shapes and mince....ready to toss into your favorite stir-fry.

One of my favorites:

(Stir-Fry Chicken & Cashews)

Chicken broth-12 to 14 oz
1 tsp each; arrowroot and Sesame oil
2 tbsp terriyaki sauce ( optional ) I use molasses instead
4 cloves garlic-minced
1 tbsp fresh ginger-minced ( or to taste )
1 lb organic chicken -cut into strips
4 green onions-chopped
1/2 cup cashews
1/2 tsp hot pepper sauce

Combine 1/2 cup broth, arrowroot, and terriyaki-set aside
In a large wok ( or skillet ) heat oil over medium/high heat
Add garlic and ginger and and stir fry for 10 seconds
Add chicken and stir-fry for 4 to 5 minutes ( just til done )

Push chicken to side of wok-stir sauce and add to center of wok

Cook and stir until thickened
Combine with chicken, add green onions, cashews and hot pepper sauce.

Serve hot over a mixture of green salad greens.


Summer is here...have fun, be safe, and hope you are gardening~


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Feeling Good and Looking Good From The Inside Out~

I've written a lot on the benefits of herbs and natural ingredients and the goodness they supply to our inner being.

As few as 40 years ago, many women looked to plants for much of their skin care regiments.

Those options and ingredients have more recently been incorporated more and more into many mainline products.

All natural ( really natural ) organic and chemical free is always the "best" way to go...but, if and when that is not an option or a choice, one can still find products that are less harmful by considering the ingredients.


Marine Ingredients...Undersea elements such as seaweed and algae are great hydrators, and they are rich in trace elements...very good for the skin. With minerals such as zinc, magnesium, vitamins A,C,and E-all will work to hydrate your outer skin.

Antioxidants...plays the starring role in the anti aging process by inhibiting the free radicals that cause collagen breakdown. Vitamin C, coffee berry, and argan oil are three of the most sought after...one of these 3 ingredients should be at the top or very near the ingredient list to be effective.

Caramides...lipids that are found in the skins surface that function like mortar to hold cells together, prevent water loss and keeping the skin plump and hydrated.

Peptides...these are amino acid chains that penetrate the skin's uppermost layers and have the ability to tell cells to behave in a certain way...produce more collagen for instances.

Calming Agents...last but certainly not the least of the best. These are found in plant products...such as , chamomile, cucumber, and aloe...all have calming agents that reduce inflammation and redness brought on from rosacea or chapped and sensitive skin.

These are agents that should be found in the ingredient label of your foundation, lip gloss, eye care products, etc., as well as the most important part of your skin care routine...which is the cleansing, toning and moisturizing routine.

And don't overlook the diet...beauty is, as we have come to know, truly from the inside out...when we don't nourish our body's need for proper fuel, it will compensate by taking from us...our healthy, bright, plump and beautiful outer skin.

EatWell-BeWell...Look Well~

Bea Rigsby-Kunz
Sage Hill Farms

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Thyme In The Garden~

When I made the decision to return to my roots of farming, little did I know about the time factor and how it would change my life. Well, actually I did know, I grew up on a farm, I really did know....I had just become accustomed to doing things on my self imposed schedule inside the world I had made for myself.  That all changed, overnight, literally.

I've learned to do a lot with a little-compared to adjustments one can make in most jobs, 'farming' sets the schedule, the farmer follows .

So, I have been busy, come follow me through the gardens of spring, smell the heady Lavender, pinch the Lemon thyme, and the Heirloom roses are more beautiful than ever before.

Lavender, I think could be called the Gilded herb...it has such history, through-out history...from royalty to the trenches of war, lavender has served to please, heal, and entice.

The famous "Bonny Doon" Farms have been growing lavender and producing lavender products for decades, I have learned a lot from reading about the people and the place.

The lavender of Sage Hill Farms is just beginning to reveal itself in bloom.  It will be harvested, dried, and ready for your enjoyment by mid-June...so mark your calendar and treat yourself and a friend to the 'Bliss' that is Lavender~

Bea Rigsby-Kunz
Sage Hill Farms