I am not a dietitian, I am a Research and Development Chef with a Nutritional Concentration. This site is based on opinions I've formed through my research and experience working for manufactured food processors.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Steamed Kobocha Squash with Jaggery Goor (Gur)

Although the cooking method this recipe utilizes works well with almost any squash variety, the sweet and spicy flavor profile compliments kobocha, acorn, carnival and butternut really well. Jaggery Goor (Gur) is unrefined palm sugar, and it has a strong molasses like flavor. I buy mine at Indian stores but it can be ordered online as well. Don't be afraid if it has a gooey texture, that just means it's probably a little fresher than the dry stuff. In fact, I seek out the wetter packages because their easier to work with. So on with the recipe:

Pre-heat your oven to 425F. Wash the outside of the squash off, cut it in half (vertically), and scoop the seeds out. Sprinkle salt and cinnamon on the inside halves. Fill a baking pan with water until it reaches 3/4" in height. Place the squash center side (flat side) down into the water. Bake for 30-50 minutes depending on the size of your cucurbita.The flesh will be soft and easy to scoop. Take a small spoonful of jaggery goor and place it along with a little butter into the bowl-like center of the squash. Let the sugar melt in the hot squash. Mmmm...I like to enjoy mine right out of the shell.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Say what? That's not honey, honey

I just read the most disturbing but not completely unexpected article on Eatocracy regarding store bought honey. As it turns out most of the honeys (not the good looking type, I'm talking about the stuff bees make) sold in stores isn't even honey. Here is an excerpt from the article:

"No pollen was found in 76 percent of samples from grocery stores including TOP Food, Safeway, Giant Eagle, QFC, Kroger, Metro Market, Harris Teeter, A&P, Stop & Shop and King Soopers" and "No pollen was found in 100 percent of samples from drugstores including Walgreens, Rite-Aid and CVS Pharmacy."

Even more disturbing:

"An earlier Food Safety News investigation found that at least a third of all the honey consumed in the United States was likely smuggled from China and could be tainted with illegal antibiotics and heavy metals. Foreign honey also puts a squeeze on American beekeepers, who have been lobbying for years for an enforceable national standard to prevent foreign honey from flooding the market."

Click here to read the full article, and gimme some sugar friends...buy some honey from your local farmer sans the antibiotics and heavy metal...barf.