Monday, September 17, 2012

Food Swap Recap: Dulce de Leche Season

I did my second food swap in Troy NY with the From Scratch Club yesterday, and this time I brought some of the startlingly delicious boozy gingered white peach/blackberry jam I made a while back, a couple of young aloe plants, and a bunch of Dulce de Leche.

Dulce de Leche Easy Safe

Learning About Local Food And Farms

The swap was great fun, this time my oldest came along with me. It was a good one for him to go to, as a representative from the Northeastern Organic Farmer's Association of New York (NOFA-NY) spoke, and had a lot of good material on local farms and food. My son is in the middle of a Food Security and Food Justice project-based-learning unit at school, so getting some context from the farming and sustainability camp was worthwhile. Part of the project has a journaling component, where the kids are asked to think about the larger issues, and give their point of view, supporting evidence, and flesh out their ideas. I think the materials we got yesterday, the New York Locavore Challenge and the Organic Food Guide, along with New York Organic News may help illuminate some areas he had overlooked.

Food Swap Bounty

The Dulce de Leche was a hit, and it's super easy to make using canned sweetened condensed milk. I've worked out the issues, and come up with a bulletproof way to get it just right, without losing your mind. It's all done in the background, in a slow cooker, eschews the "boil it in the can" method and uses glass canning jars instead. This makes it safer, as well as easier to give as gifts, or to have stored for home use. Check out the details of how-to make Dulce de Leche at From Scratch Club.

Having such a popular item assured that I was able to snag all the really cool stuff that I so desperately wanted - top of the list were the Maple Bacon Marshmallows. Oh. Em. GEE!! Chocolate truffles, well, they're all gone and I ate most of them. Which is how it should be! The kids and hubby are plowing through the roasted corn salad/salsa, I expect a fight soon as the supply gets low. Fava Bean Spread, well, that was a midnight snack attack victim. But it's good for me, right?

 I also got a container of fermented dosa batter, so there's going to be some curry-making this week to complement these delicious rice/lentil flatbreads. And the hot pepper jelly is going to make a scary good glaze for some wings I'm whipping up tonight. OM NOM NOM! My little bottle of chocolate-raspberry liqueur is chilling in the fridge, that won't be there long either. The madagascar bourbon vanilla is waiting patiently in the cupboard for me to make some vanilla ice cream to really show it off.

It's Not Only About Food

On the non-food side, I scored some all-natural homemade patchouli-scented soap, which I'm going to grate and liquefy to add to my foaming soap dispensers. It's very nice, not too strong on the patchouli, just right. The quirkiest thing (and anyone who knows me, knows quirky will get me EVERY TIME) was a crocheted dress for bottles of dish liquid. Dish soap can do drag looks! RuPaul needs to know about this! Now to find some wigs, and heels, maybe a boa…

Dish drag!

Topping off the day, Christina of From Scratch Club invited me to move from guest contributor to full contributor on the blog there, so I'm really looking forward to sharing more recipes, how-to's and other general food-related posts on such a great forum. I love the community, and am very happy to be a part of it!

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