Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Do You Trust Supermarket Organic Claims?

Call me skeptical, but there is something downright fishy about a national supermarket chain claiming to sell organic foods. How do we know? Do we know their farming practices? Do we know what they mean by organic? The word is continually being contested, with all types of interpretation existing. It is easy to slap a label on packages, put on department signage, and use other marketing tactics. All are intent to show how concerned the company is about consumer health.

Bull...the only thing a supermarket chain is concerned about is the bottom line or profits. They can market their foods any way they want, but that is the fact. They would be out of business if they were not profitable.

Supermarket chains also claim to deal with local farmers. How do we know the farmers are treated well? How do we know what type of deal they enter into? Do we know how much control the supermarket has over the farming practices? We don't.

After seeing so much deception involved in the food industry, I am highly skeptical of these organic, local farmer claims. It is easy to take a farmer's picture, post it near the produce, and claim the food is local. We could call the farmer or farm management, but would any response received be a deciding factor?

Farmers may receive remuneration in the form of “hush money” to speak positively about the chain. After experiencing so many false testimonials both in real-life and online, I do not trust testimonial quotes at all. I know from first-hand experience that many testimonials are paid for. Some others are simply false statements used as promotional tools. How do we know the farmer testimonials aren't really produced by the supermarket's marketing department?

I have had a love affair with farmers and their passion for fresh foods since I was a kid. My family all took part in our backyard garden where we grew corn, potatoes, carrots, broccoli, onions, radishes, chives, beets, lettuce, and other delights. Our fences were covered with raspberries and blackberries.

There is nothing comparable to growing your own food or having a working relationship with a treasured farmer. There is a true passion and love for good, organically-grown food involved.

When the food industry (which supermarkets are a part of) gets involved in the organic area, that love vanishes.

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Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Easy Homemade Pumpkin Butter

I have received numerous requests for my autumn abundance article, so here it is...Enjoy!

It's autumn and with that comes the abundance of squashes. Squashes grow like wildfire and provide so much taste. Doesn't pumpkin butter sound delicious? You can make your own for much less than the cost of buying it in the store. Plus, you control the ingredients. What more could you want? You can make your own nutritious blend for dirt cheap. Read on....

Every year I like to steam up pumpkin, let it cool and peel it. Then, I freeze it for later use throughout the remaining year. It's a great beginning for any pumpkin recipe, including my pumpkin butter. You could probably used canned pumpkin, but I cannot guarantee the final result. I can attest to FRESH pumpkin as providing superb taste, though.

You can make pumpkin butter either on the stovetop or in a crockpot. I started making my recipe on the stovetop. Then I noticed I needed to stir it too frequently, even while cooking it on low heat. So, I transferred everything to a crockpot and let it cook. How easy is that?

This recipe relies on the natural taste of spices and the sweetness of pumpkin instead of heavy refined sugars. Most recipes, you will notice, use an inordinate amount of sugar. Not mine. You will receive the pure, natural taste of ingredients. My tasty recipe only uses minimal refined sugar. And, you could easily substitute unsweetened apple or white grape juice for the white and brown sugars. Of course, you can add more sugar as you like.


You will need:

3 cups pumpkin, cooked and peeled
1 T. cinnamon
¼ t. nutmeg
½ t. ginger
2 t. white sugar
2 T brown sugar

Place all ingredients into a crockpot and stir thoroughly. Turn on high heat. Cook for 3-4 hours. Stir as needed. 

Store in airtight container in fridge. You can also can this and give as a holiday gift. 
Find interesting? Kindly share...Thanks! 

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