I have found my people.

I have found my people. It has taken me a long time. I finally feel like I have connected with an amazing group of creative, spiritual, healthy and fit women. Or maybe I am becoming an amazing creative spiritual women (I know that I am healthy and fit) and I am attracting the right people to myself. What a concept!

This past weekend, I went to a wreath making workshop at The Dutch Hill Homestead. I went with 4 other women. My friend Diane drove us in her Tesla. We were talking about the environmental impact of dying and that there is a green cemetery in South Jersey. You are buried in a burlap bag and they plant a tree for you. It was an interesting conversation and I thought it was important to mention the Tesla. I like hanging out with people who are concerned about the environment. We also talked about how we were hungry and hoped the Ally Dwyer, the owner  The Dutch Hill Homestead, along with her partner Rob Stenger, would have something to eat at The Homestead.

Of course Ally had food. She always has food, and puts on interesting events.  She had quite the spread. I especially loved her Roasted Pepper & Tomato Soup. Ally’s recipe used her own organic canned tomatoes and homemade chicken stock. It is really special when someone grows their own food and then cooks for you. She was nice enough to share the recipe with me.

DHH Roasted Pepper & Tomato Soup
Ingredients:
● 6 tablespoons olive oil
● 2 medium yellow onions, chopped into a medium dice
● 3 cloves garlic, chopped
● 24 ounces canned crushed or pureed tomatoes (if you have any
canned from the summer of course use those garden goodies!)
● 1 roasted bell pepper or 6 oz. of canned roasted red peppers
● 3 cups homemade or store-bought chicken or veggie stock
● 2 teaspoons sea salt
● 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
● Pinch of chili flakes
● Chopped herbs for garnishing if you’d like (basil is a crowd pleaser!)
Method of Preparation
1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion and
garlic; cook, stirring, until onions have softened, about 15 minutes.
2. Add tomatoes, peppers, stock, salt, and pepper; bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to low and cook until tomatoes, onions, and garlic are
soft, 10 to 20 minutes.
3. Puree in your blender// Vitamix or use a stick blender to puree the
soup. I serve mine a little chunky. Feel free to refrigerate, freeze or
serve immediately.
4. Garnish with basil, Parmesan flakes or a grilled cheese sandwich!

It wasn’t all about the food. Amber of Amber and Earth did a great job of teaching us how to make wreaths. It was a wonderful December afternoon. I came home with a beautiful wreath to hang on my door. I also bought myself a heavy duty canvas Dutch Hill Homestead Apron with great pockets and leather trim. I know I will be doing fun things in my new apron.

“I love any activity that requires an apron.” Kate Horner

Many of the creative women that I hang out with are part of my OutdoorFit community. If you would like to become Fit and Fabulous with us in January. Please click here to learn more. We can eat Roasted Pepper and Tomato Soup together!

I made homemade mayonnaise!

I have been focusing on ways to reduce my plastic consumption and food waste. I have been so inspired by the Dutch Hill Homestead.   They are all about zero waste. They make as many products from scratch as possible, and feed any leftovers to the chickens and goats. I don’t have chickens or goats, so I put my food scraps into the compost bin.

I am all about keeping things easy. I don’t like to fuss or spend hours in the kitchen. I looked at what I buy on a regular basis and investigated how to make them from scratch. Once you have the process down it is easy. My son Tom loves mayonnaise. He will eat it straight from the jar. This morning I made homemade mayo. It was so easy and I used a cute little ball jar.

1/2 cup Organic Avocado oil

1 egg from farmer’s market.

1/2 tsp Dijon mustard.

1 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice.

Put all of the ingredients right in the ball jar. Get out the blender stick and blend for about 20 seconds. To tell you the truth, I didn’t measure and it came out just fine.  I only make a small amount that I can use within a few days.

I also started making cashew milk, cashew yogurt, and almond milk. I hesitated with the almond milk because you need to strain it. I bought a nut bag and it is super easy. It strains the milk to remove the pulp. I can use the leftover pulp to make fat balls. I am feeling very efficient!

The last thing I have been doing is making bone broth. I buy an organic chicken I put the chicken in a covered pot full of water, bring the water to a boil and then simmer for about 90 minutes. I make pulled chicken from the meat, dividing it up into 4 oz portions in cute ball jars. It makes an easy grab and go lunch.  I then put the stock, the bones and vegetables into the crock pot on low for 24 hours to make delicious bone broth.

Everything tastes so much better when made from scratch with the best possible ingredients. Reducing plastic consumption and food waste is good for your health, our planet and your pocketbook.

I hope this inspires you to get out the blender stick and whip up some homemade mayo! Let me know. I would love to hear from you.

Love,

Mary