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Monthly Archives: July 2014

This blog is a Kitsap Sun reader blog. The Kitsap Sun neither edits nor previews reader blog posts. Their content is the sole creation and responsibility of the readers who produce them. Reader bloggers are asked to adhere to our reader blog agreement. If you have a concern or would like to start a reader blog of your own, please contact

Best Salad in the World

DSC_0453OK, I know, I’m a healthy person and I should love salads, right? Well, I don’t. Or rather, I didn’t until this salad found me.

Over the solstice weekend Mum and two of her wonderful friends from the Winslow Cohousing Group came to stay at my family home in Seabeck. I had no idea they were going to revolutionize my feelings towards salad.

That Friday evening, they lured me away from my work with calls for dinner and wine. I have to admit I wasn’t all that excited to learn salad was the only thing on the menu, but I could sense there was a lot of love in this meal. And the fact that Mum and her friends are radiantly glowing people helped me feel that whatever they’re eating, I want!

Anyhoo, when they asked if I wanted beets and candied ginger, I hesitantly said, “Sure, I’m open to anything these days.”

After we all shared what we were grateful for on that wonderful solstice evening, we dug into our colorful salad.

“WOW!” popped out of my mouth before I’d even finished my first bite.

It was seriously the best salad I have ever eaten. I shared it again this week with my boyfriend, and he said the same thing – unprompted even!

So here it is, the recipe for the Best Salad in the World:

Use whatever amounts work for you…

  • Shredded salad greens – can include baby kale, red lettuce, swiss chard, beet greens…just no iceberg lettuce
  • Candied ginger – cut into tiny pieces (you can buy it in bulk at Central Market in Seattle, Bainbridge or Poulsbo)
  • Shredded beets – I’ve found I like them on top because they’re so pretty
  • Nuts – I like salted sunflower seeds or cashews best, but almond pieces and other nuts are delicious, too
  • Black pepper – fresh ground over the top to your taste
  • Olive oil – pour over the top for dressing
  • Balsamic vinegar – pour over the top for dressing, to your taste
  • Optional:
    • fresh nasturtium flowers (for additional prettiness)
    • crumbled feta or other cheese
    • Bragg’s Liquid Aminos (for additional saltiness and healthiness)
    • Chopped fresh parsley, chives, rosemary and other greens

DSC_0455All you need to make any salad taste good…no need for bottles of dressings. Add lemon, garlic and herbs for additional flavor

Yum, yum, YUM!

Maybe if I eat enough of this I’ll glow like Mum and her friends…

What’s your favorite salad? 


DSC_0446Happy Salad Eating!


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Seven Delicious Strawberry Recipes

straw1In recent post about my EduCulture adventure, I showed photos of delicious Bainbridge Island-grown strawberries. At the end of my visit with the EduCulture students, they all shared their favorite ways to use strawberries. I loved the ideas so much that I just have to share them with you.

There are endless amazing strawberry recipes out there, but here are seven creative ideas…

Important note: choosing organic is always best, but especially regarding strawberries. According to the Environmental Working Group, strawberries have the second highest amount of pesticides (after apples). See the full list by clicking here.

The first five are EduCulture student favorites and they make my mouth water just thinking about them!

1. Dip strawberries in chocolate, let harden in fridge, then dip in whipped cream.

2. Dip damp strawberries in powdered sugar.

3. Mash strawberries and pour over vanilla icecream.

4. Make strawberry pie and eat warm with vanilla icecream on top.

5. Dip strawberries in whipped cream, then in mini chocolate chips.


6. Spring’s Summer Smoothie – I’ve been making this every morning for a couple weeks now and I drink it with my morning cup of fresh mint tea. If you’ve check out my fb page lately, you’ll see I’ve had the most INCREDIBLE two weeks…just sayin’…

  • fresh strawberries
  • frozen or fresh raspberries
  • frozen blueberries
  • protein powder and/or nuts
  • squeeze of lemon
  • fresh ginger
  • dollop of honey
  • frozen kale (see this post to see how and why to use cooked, frozen kale rather than fresh)
  • almond or other milk alternative – add enough to make it smooth and drinkable
  • a few pieces of ice or other frozen fruit
  • extra tasty, healthy treats: avocado, coconut, vanilla, cinnamon, drizzle of olive oil.

Spring's Summer Smoothie - great for breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert!

Spring’s Summer Smoothie – great for breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert!

7. Vegan Chocolate Strawberry Cups – I’m a wannabe vegan, so this recipe from Molly Pearson jumped out at me when she posted it on one of my favorite blogs, I haven’t tried it yet but it’s on my list of to-do’s.

Ingredients for chocolate coating:

  • 2 Tbsp. cocoa powder
  • 1.5 Tbsp. melted coconut oil
  • 1.5 Tbsp. raw creamy peanut butter
  • 1 Tbsp. agave

Ingredients for filling:

  • 3 mashed strawberries
  • 1 Tbsp. melted coconut oil


  • Mix first 4 ingredients together. Place tsp. of chocolate mixture in the bottom of a muffin cup and freeze 15 minutes.
  • While waiting, mix strawberries and coconut oil.
  • Layer strawberry filling on top of frozen chocolate mixture. Freeze 15 minutes.
  • Add the rest of the chocolate to the top. Freeze for 15 minutes.
  • Do away with processed peanut butter cups forever.

Strawberries as Vitamins

Since I’m a berry-holic, I was thrilled to learn that not only are strawberries tastier than candy, they pack a nutritional punch. The vitamin C and antioxidant content alone is worth eating them every day, but they’re also high in manganese, folate, potassium and fiber. Check out this list for more on their nutritional value.

According to, strawberries are “among the top 20 fruits in antioxidant capacity,” and “Just one serving — about eight strawberries — provides more vitamin C than an orange.”

Where to get berries:

I’d love to hear about your favorite strawberry recipes!

Happy Berry Eating,


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Community Supported Agriculture: A Smart Way to Shop Local

csaPhoto from The Food Shed CSA web page

I meant to post this ages ago, but the season of kayak guiding is upon me and so free time is sparse. If you hurry, though, you can jump on the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) bandwagon…

Earlier this year I was lucky enough to be present when a friend received her weekly bakery share of her Food Shed CSA . I honestly thought I might fall on the floor the food was so delicious. There is a sample menu of their bakery share below.

A CSA is an amazing way to get fresh, local, organic produce and give much-needed support to local farms. The general idea is that you buy shares from the farm of your choice at the beginning of a season, then get weekly shipments of whatever that farm has available that week. Some farms deliver, but most on the Kitsap Peninsula provide your shipment for you to pick up on a specified day to save on costs and time. You literally provide the seed money for their growing season.

To learn more about the CSA concept, click here to see the Wikipedia definition.

There are numerous CSA’s around Kitsap County and beyond, which you can see on this list. Today, though, I want to share about the Food Shed CSA because I’ve experienced it and the time to join is upon us. I’m also very, very proud to be a new member of the board of advisors for The Food Shed and I want to support this amazing endeavor in any way possible.

The summer season Food Shed CSA has items such as:

  • fresh kale
  • swiss chard
  • lettuce
  • radishes
  • eggplant
  • MUCH more! See the whole list by clicking here.

They also have these amazing share options:

  • Locally wood-roasted coffee
  • Adventurous eater: a small addition of special treats each week. Spice up your cooking with exciting ingredients – think mushrooms, specialty herbs, ginger, dry beans and more.
  • Cut flowers

If you want to get in on their summer CSA goodness, you need to contact them asap (like today!).

If the bakery share menu below entices you, I definitely recommend making a request to get a share next season.

Food Shed Bakery CSA Menu Example

(non-summer season)

A Bakery Share includes 4 units each week – you can add on extra units and any value added items listed. They’ll have your order and any amount due at pick up. The pick is at Mossback: 26185 Ohio Ave. NE, Kingston

1 unit per serving: 

Asparagus, Cheese and Black Pepper Brioche Twists – $4

Cinnamon Rolls – $4

Maggie’s Farm Rhubarb

Sweetie Pies – $4

Strawberry and Toasted Walnut Buttermilk Scones with Vanilla Bean Glaze – $4

Sweet Potato, Spinach, Black Bean and Cheese Hand Pies – $4

Gluten Free

Rhubarb Streusal Muffins – $4

Chocolate brownie wedges – $4

1 unit per serving – can order more than one serving :

Spring Vegetable Soup  – $4 per serving

(includes asparagus, peas, potatoes white beans)

Green lentils, asparagus, arugula and spinach salad  – $4 per serving

Collard Greens and Radish Slaw with Crispy Leek Shallots – $4 per serving

2 units  (this bread counts as 2 of your units) :

Herb and Garlic Johnny Bread – $6 per loaf

To learn more and sign up for your Food Shed CSA, visit or send them an e-mail:, or send a direct message on their Facebook page. But hurry, the summer season started last week! Tell them you heard about it through Spring’s blog.



Happy Eating!