Tag Archives: Food

BC Tree Fruits…. from the US….

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A B.C. Tree Fruits worker launches hunger strike after being suspended for speaking out against his employer.

That’ll be NAFTA for you. Mind boggling, that we’re surrounded by orchards in this area and it’s better to import them from the US, than support our local growers.

But, of course, I’ve got to “save the planet” by holidaying in the back garden, using the car less, or switching to mercury lightbulbs… maybe it’s just me, but, I’m suspicious….. I’ve got a real strong feeling I’m being fed a load of b*llsh*t

UPDATE….

Let me get this right then, BC Fruits are supposedly dealing with not just BC Fruit, but Washington state also so says this “whistleblower”…..

So, being a farmers market regular and buying my fruit and veg from local growers, I thought I’d do some digging around on the BC Tree Fruits website (www.bctree.com)…..

Because since 1936, we’ve helped to promote not just British Columbia’s amazing apples, but also pears, cherries, apricots, peaches, prune plums and nectarines. And even some stuff that doesn’t grow on trees, like grapes and blueberries. Hence, fruits.

We’re a part of the Okanagan Tree Fruit Cooperative, owned by over 800 local grower families.

No mention as far as I can tell of including apples from Washington, (in the U.S.) in a British Columbia local growers outlet, unless they’re included in those 800 local grower families and a state, from another country can be classed as local of course. I, as always, am happy to be corrected.

Our new tagline lets you know that our produce is nothing short of delectable. It’s also a subtle reminder that we have way more than apples (though we do have a lot of apples). Like pears, peaches, cherries and a whole host of other fruits grown by 800 local families who love what they do and where they do it: the Okanagan.

I see…. “the Okanagan”….. not Washington then. And oh, there’s a map…. http://www.bctree.com/about/our-growers

….. have a guess if Washington is on it…..

I think I’ll be spending a little more time at the Famers Market this week and see if I can find out some more info on what exactly this lot get up to…..

Tomatos…

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At last, some produce from the garden….

Tomatos

The “Tiger Tommies” are especially good!

It took some chicken manure from the new neighbour to kick the damn things into gear, and since surrounding the bases of the plants, they’ve gone into overdrive. Even the pepper plant is entering “warp speed”! The soil clearly needs a bit more than just regular manure and compost to provide the right nutrients, something to bear in mind for the future.

Blogging has taken a bit of a back burner for the last couple of weeks, thanks to summer holidays, keeping the kids entertained and trying to get our future plans in order. I hope to be back “on the ball” now, as school is gearing up to begin again.

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Organic Food IS Better….

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So, “organic food is no better!”, I heard you all cry! “You’re mad! You’re being conned!”….

Yeah, right….

Half of all the fruit & veg you buy is contaminated.
http://tinyurl.com/nmuwmk

ALMOST HALF of the fresh fruit and veg sold across the UK is contaminated with toxic pesticides, according to the latest scientific surveys for the government.

Nearly every orange, 94% of pineapples and 90% of pears sampled were laced with traces of chemicals used to kill bugs. High proportions of apples, grapes and tomatoes were also tainted, as were parsnips, melons and cucumbers.

Alarmingly, as much as a quarter of the food on sale in 2008 – the date of the latest figures – was found to contain multiple pesticides. In some cases, up to ten different chemicals were detected in a single sample.
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Experts warn that the “cocktail effect” of so many different chemicals endangers health. They also point out that some of the pesticides are not only cancer-causing but also so-called “gender-benders” – chemicals that disrupt human sexuality.

I see,…. “cancer causing” as well as “gender bending” chemicals, that “disrupt human sexuality”?

What’s that? Speak up. You’ve gone quiet, you know who you are, you were happy to laud the FSA report at me the other day, what’s happened? Where’s your cocky put downs now?

So, the headline, on the BBC website, from the 29th July 2009;

Organic ‘has no health benefits’
http://tinyurl.com/ngjz27
Organic food is no healthier than ordinary food, a large independent review has concluded.

…. is basically, false, if not an outright lie. It clearly IS healthier, as I’m not ingesting pesticides capable of causing cancer or turning me into a female version of myself, or my son into his sister and vice versa. Not to mention, that the review was so large, it failed to take into account the pesticide issue, one of the main reasons people prefer organic produce.

You can believe the FSA if you want. I don’t. I’m sticking with organic food…. sorry, let me rephrase that, I’m sticking with naturally grown food. You can have the lab/chemically enhanced stuff if you want.

But then I’m going to remind you of it next time I hear you comment about how healthy my kids look compared to yours….

Rant over. For now….

Wow!!!….

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Sitting on the beach, last weekend, in the Okanagan Campsite, just past Peachland….

South Campsite...

There’s 2 parts to this site, a north and a south. Both a great little sites, but the north part is terraced down to the lake, although the beach is beautiful. The south is all flat and the beach ain’t too bad either. Take your pick, the sites in both parts were excellent in my book, all with tables, fire pit/BBQ’s, some secluded, some open allowing you to meet your “neighbours”.

In true Canadian fashion, as we walked round the bay, back to our bench, we got talking to a couple of guys, a pilot and his old man, down on the dog part of the beach, with a couple of labradors. It didn’t take long before we were offered a beer and we stayed chatting for an hour, as the kids joined in keeping the dogs entertained. They were regulars, on this stretch of beach every weekend, hurling huge sticks into the lake for their dogs to fetch, whilst drinking a few cans and chatting, even apparently in the depths of winter.

We walked back along the beach with them and got the campstove crank’d up and fried some organic smokies, that we have discovered at the Farmers Market, homemade by a German couple. (They make a great breakfast roll, which has now become part of the whole Saturday morning market experience, forgoing the usual toast and cereal. A bit of a habit now actually….)

Organic Smokies...

Sam took this one, as I was handed mine….

Wow!

…. they were bloody tasty though! Wrapped up with tomatos, lettuce and cucumber, a definite hit.

And as we ate them, we had this view, from the camp table, as the sun went down behind us….

South Campsite Beach...

With sites like this, the tent is great, but I’m considering a caravan. Nothing fancy, just with 4 beds is enough. All we need is somewhere to sleep and store the food. Just being able to pull in to sites like this one, for $12 a night, (6 quid, in the UK, roughly….) is tempting. Think about it, a lakefront property for $12! All summer holiday long. Some of these sites even have wifi now, which means I can get some work done as well, whilst the kids play on the beach….

…. I’m off up the caravan showroom tomorrow.

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First, It Was Baked Beans….

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Then came the chips/fries, whatever you want to call them….

Homemade Fries/Chips...

What can I say? I find myself getting more and more fed up with the food you get from the shops. (… that’s the store, not the farmers market or the independent stores we go to….)

Bag’s of McCains fries…. tasteless. Sorry, they are. Straight from the oven, they seem to be OK, but is that ‘cos they’re hot? I had some the other day, after coming in, that had cooled a little and to be honest, I couldn’t finish ’em. They were simply tasteless. So, “why not make them like my gran used to?“, he thought. “from spuds, after washing and using a wavy chopping thing…. and then I’ve got my own organic chips/fries as opposed to these manky things!“….

They were so much better. Tossed and coated in oil and then baked in the oven. Simple. Had them with a nice salad and chicken kabobs. Only problem? Didn’t make enough. It won’t happen again.

In fact they were so much better, we’re having them for Sunday lunch too, with homemade/handpressed burgers….in

More Planting….

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The raspberry canes are in!…

Raspberry Canes....

A friend gave us 7 canes from her mum’s garden now she has moved and we whacked ’em in smartish. I returned the one we bought from Home Depot, as, to be blunt, it was cr@p! It looked like a twig and it wasn’t looking like it was ever going to progress any further.

So, the beds up behind our little deck, look like this….

The Plot #1....

If you click the photo and go to the Flickr page, through the magic of the interweb, I’ve put some notes on the photo showing what’s where, but there is now raspberries, strawberries, courgettes, onions, carrots and tomatos all planted. Not all outside yet, it’s still getting cold at night.

The Deck....

Left looks up at the crops and right, down the hill to the house and looking out across the lake.

Plenty of books out from the library, on making beer and wine, so that’s next. Along with chickens….

Gardening in the Sunshine….

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Well, we didn’t make Penticton, spending the entire weekend in the back garden planting our “crops” and building a new composting bin….

The weather was warm and sunny all day long, both days, so we stayed put and got cracking. Carrots, tomatoes, courgettes along with some other things. We’re just figuring out where to put some strawberries and raspberries. Must be getting fired up and going well, the missus wants to start her own gardening/veggie blog/website….

Prawns....

Saturday night, end of day #1, prawns, steak and salad on the BBQ, with a couple of beers and a glass or 3 of wine by the fire pit….

Fire....

Gggrrrrr…..

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Homemade Baked Beans….

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After discovering they used this BPA stuff in the lining of tin cans and not being able to find the baked beans we like, it became a case of, “Stuff it then, I’ll make them myself!“….

So I did….

Baked Beans....

I found a recipe for some basic bog standard baked beans and after a few trial and error runs, the recipe never being perfect anyway, I think I may have cracked it. They’re easy to do, you just throw all the ingredients in the pot and boil ’em up then leave to simmer for a few hours. The longer it seems the better, after this last batch. What’s in there? Chopped tomatoes, the beans (I used navy beans here, I think you’re supposed to use haricot ones which are a little softer, but leave to boil and they seem to be fine), chilli powder, cayenne powder, water, some golden syrup, pepper and garlic. If you want the full recipe, let me know. I’ve got a few variations which I might try next.

The missus likes ’em so much, she took a bowl of them for her lunch the following day. I had mine with cheese on toast, the bread, again home made, after a tip I got from a reader about using the 4 hour bake. Thanks, Karen!…

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The Beautiful Truth Trailers….

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OK then, done a bit of digging, found these….

I already knew some of this stuff, maybe you didn’t….

I’ve avoided MSG for a long time now. How? I read the label, if it’s in there, I don’t buy it. You might want to start thinking about it too. Get yourself educated. Don’t take my word for it, don’t take anyone’s word for it. Go find out. Switch your brain on, especially if you have kids…. like the trailer says, the manufacturers are hoping that you are “too busy, or too lazy, or too stupid.” Which one are you?

You need to look out for your kids mate, no one else is going to.

Take care,

M

Candy Warning for Halloween….

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Just had this forwarded to me. I already knew about this, as should you all, if you have been keeping up with the news, but if you haven’t, you have been warned….

Halloween Warning: Candy Made in China May be Contaminated with Toxic Melamine
This Halloween, children across the United States may be poisoned with toxic melamine, a potentially deadly chemical that causes severe kidney damage, liver damage and even death. This chemical is found in chocolates and candy products made in China, which is now embroiled in a global melamine scandal involving eggs, animal feed, candies, infant formula, milk products and much more.
Read Full Article NOW @ http://tinyurl.com/62artj

If you have time, 20 mins, maybe watch the following….

So, tonight, before you let your kids stuff themselves with their candy, take a moment just to look at what’s in there, especially if they are made in China or contain milk powder.

As I was told, when I started banging on about organic food, “Take care of your kids. No one else is going to.” Now might be a good time to bear that in mind.

Take care, and have a a great Halloween, one and all!

M

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