Bubbies Dill Pickles = A taste sensational treat!

I am a dill pickle aficionado.  I confidently say this because well, I have eaten a LOT of pickles.  If there was a pickle and popcorn diet I’m pretty sure that instead of my “fluffy self” I’d be a dead on double for Twiggy or Calista Flockhart only maybe not so cute.  😉   I’ve however been a little turned off lately when I’ve looked at the ingredients that pickle makers have been shoving into my jars of deliciousness.  The number one problem I have is the use of High Fructose Corn Syrup.  Which I can pretty assuredly say is liquid GMO.  So fast forward today while I’m doing my shopping at Sprouts and I see they have a pickle section near the deli.  There in the refrigerated section is a cloudy bottle of Bubbie’s Kosher Dill Pickles with a photo of a little Jewish grandma or Bubbie on it.  I pick it up and guess what the ingredients are???

  • Cucumbers
  • Artesian Well Water
  • Garlic
  • Salt
  • Dill
  • Spices

What no HFCS?  On closer inspection I read about the fact that it has lots of good probiotics and is gluten free.  Fantastic.  I take note that they also sell other products like sauerkraut, pickled green tomatoes,  and horseradish.  Fast forward to my getting them home and opening the jar to eating FOUR yes FOUR pickles in one day!  But they are amazing.  So amazing I had to tell everybody about them.  Thus this post.  They will be a staple item in our refrigerator for sure.  I hope you enjoy them as much as me.  🙂

“Perfectly Perplexing Pickle Facts

Americans have been eating pickles ever since Christopher Columbus discovered the land. Since then, the pickled cucumber has become a favored snack, available in more than 36 varieties. Even teenagers and toddlers love them. In a recent study teens have identified pickles as one of their favorite vegetables. (Some call pickles a vegetable, but Supreme Court U.S.A. has ruled that they are a fruit of the vine.)

Pickle history dates back to 2030 B.C., when inhabitants of Northern India brought cucumber seeds to the Tigris Valley. Shortly thereafter, cucumber vines were growing all across Europe. People then learned to preserve the fruits of their labor by pickling them in a salty brine.

During the 17th century, the pickle came to the “New World.” By the 1820s, colonists had grown so fond of pickles that Nicholas Appert constructed the first pickle plant in America. In fact, America was named after a pickle peddler: Amerigo Vespucci. Vespucci was a ships chandler, outfitting vessels scheduled for long explorations with vitamin C-packed pickled vegetables (particularly cucumbers and cabbage) to prevent scurvy among crew members.

You can experience a piece of early American history each time you open a jar of Bubbies Pure Kosher Dills or Bubbies Bread and Butter Chips.

Consumption:

More than 67 percent of all households eat pickles.

American households purchase pickles every 53 days.

Americans consume more than nine pounds of pickles per person annually.

The Land:

Approximately 100,000 to 125,00 acres are devoted to growing pickling cucumbers in the U.S. They are grown in more than 30 states, with the biggest producers being in California, Colorado, Michigan, North Carolina and Texas.

Cucumbers are a cash crop at the grower level. Growing them requires no government subsidies.

Health:

Pickles are fat-free and low in calories.

Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt, believed pickles contributed to health and beauty.

Particulars:

Pickling is one of the oldest forms of food preservation, discovered at the dawn of civilization, thousands of years ago in Mesopotamia.

North Americans prefer pickles with warts while Europeans prefer them wartless.

Refrigerated versions account for about 20% of all pickle sales.

International Pickle Week is one of the country’s longest running food promotions. It has been observed for more than 50 years. IPW runs for ten days during the last two weeks in May.

The pickled vegetable industry has its own trade association: Pickle Packers International, Inc.

During WWII, the U.S. Government tagged 40% of all pickle production for the ration kits of the armed forces.

Good pickles have an audible crunch at ten paces. This is measured using an Audible Crunch Meter. Pickles that can only be heard at one pace are known as denture dills.

Ingredients

Cucumbers

Artesian Well Water

Garlic

Salt

Dill

Spices”

via Bubbies.

After writing this post some questions came up about whether or not Bubbies contains any probiotics so I began a little search and found this statement by Bubbies:

“Bubbies Bread & Butter Chips are vinegar brined and are a pasteurized food product, so there are no live cultures in that particular item.  Our Pure Kosher Dills, Dill Relish, Pickled Green Tomatoes and Sauerkraut are all naturally fermented and cured in salt water brine using a lacto-fermentation process. These products contain live cultures and the enzymes that form from a natural fermentation.

The Pure Kosher Dills, Dill Relish and Pickled Green Tomatoes are 100% raw; the Sauerkraut in the jars has been flash heated but not pasteurized.  This means that the Kraut is neither pasteurized nor raw.  Bubbies Bread & Butter Chips are vinegar brined and pasteurized and are shelf stable.

We were forced to begin heating our jarred Sauerkraut to calm the cultures inside because they were causing the kraut to continue to ferment too much in turn causing a buildup of gas that then results in brine leaking all over our distributor’s and retailer’s equipment and shelving.

When we heat our jarred Sauerkraut, it is quickly raised to about 135-140 degrees and then sealed in the jars.  The goal here is not to eliminate all the beneficial cultures, but rather to stifle them so they won’t cause the jars to leak.  When our Bread and Butter Chips are pasteurized the pickle chips and brine are heated to a boil and then allowed to simmer, to 212 degrees.  This process is designed at eliminating any potential cultures and is the style of preparation for that variety of pickle. While the heating we do for our Sauerkraut is only intended to calm the gas producing nature of the product with the specific goal in mind not to eliminate the beneficial cultures.  We do not claim that this product is raw for these reasons, but it still does have live bacteria.  From our testing, it is above 140 degrees that you really begin to eliminate the cultures present in our products on a massive scale.

It is important to note that our Sauerkraut is very crisp.  It is crunchier and able to maintain its crunch for far longer than other brands.  This is because there are still vegetable fibers left intact in the cabbage which are the complex carbohydrates that break down into the simpler food that the lacto bacillus cultures feed on during the fermentation process.

Hopefully this information will help in your continued enjoyment of our products and make it easier for you to remain a loyal customer.

Wishing you the very best in Food and Health!”

 

Shrunken Heads in Cider

from Martha Stewart

It makes me smile to think of how much Martha Stewart enjoys Halloween.  Here’s another of her brilliant and fun ideas for Halloween.

“Ingredients

2 cups lemon juice

2 tablespoons coarse salt

8 large Granny Smith apples

32 whole cloves

2 gallons apple cider

2 12-ounce cans frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed

2 cups spiced rum optional

Directions:

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside. In a medium bowl, mix together lemon juice and salt; set aside.  Peel apples and cut each in half through the stem; remove seeds and core. Using a sharp paring knife, carve a face, as desired, on the rounded side of each apple half. Place apples in lemon mixture for one minute; transfer to paper towels to drain.Place apples, face-side up on prepared baking sheet and transfer to oven. Let bake until apples are dry and begin to brown around the edges, about 90 minutes. Remove apples from baking sheets and press cloves into the “eye” sockets.Combine cider, lemonade, and rum if using in a large punchbowl; float shrunken heads on top.”

via Shrunken Heads in Cider – Martha Stewart Recipes.

Maple Pumpkin Kale Chips

I’m always looking for a good kale recipe and now I think I have a new favorite thanks to Nouveau Raw.

“Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups cashew, soaked measures 2 cups

1 cup pumpkin puree

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup maple syrup

1 Tbsp vanilla infused agave

20 drops of liquid stevia

1 1/2 tsp pumpkin spice

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Preparation:

Wash and de-stem your kale.  Starting at the bottom of the kale, strip away all leaves leaving behind only the stems. Tear leaves into approximately 2- to 3-inch pieces.   Make sure you get as much excess water off of the kale as possible.  If you don’t it will make your sauce “soupy”.  Set aside.

After soaking the cashews, drain the water and rinse well.  The purpose for soaking the cashews is to soften them.

In a blender, combine all the ingredients and blend until creamy.

In a large bowl pour the sauce over the kale and coat evenly.  Use your hands for this job.  It is easier and more fun!

Place the kale on the non-stick Teflex sheets that come with your dehydrator.  Spread out the pieces to help them dry evenly.

Dehydrate on 105 degrees for approx. 6-8 hrs or until dry.  I tend to pull mine out before it gets 100% dry because I like it a little chewy.

Store in an airtight glass container and be ready to nibble non-stop till the last crumb is gone!”

via Maple Pumpkin Kale Chips.

Green Guacamole

What a great idea to keep your guacamole from browning from Zen Belly!

“Dissolve 1/4 cup sea salt in 2 cups of water.  Add the peeled and stoned avocados to the salt water, and leave them in for about 5 minutes.  Drain the water and transfer the avocados to a clean bowl. The salt water doesn’t make the guacamole salty, but I find that I don’t need to add any additional salt to the recipe.”

via Never-Browns Guacamole | zenbelly.

Raw Peanut Butter Brownies!

Don’t these look amazing!  I can’t wait to try this recipe from Fragrant Vanilla Cake.

“Raw Peanut Butter Brownie Cakes

Makes 4

Brownies:

2 cups raw peanuts

2 cups dried shredded coconut

1/2 cup raw cocoa powder

2/3 cup raw agave nectar or honey

1/4 tsp sea salt

Filling and Frosting:

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter*

1/2 cup chopped raw peanuts

To make brownies, combine all ingredients in the food processor and process until finely ground and starting to hold together.  Press mixture into a square, and place in the fridge until firm (about 2 hours).  Cut into 8 squares.  On four of the squares, spread about 1 1/2 Tbsp of the chocolate peanut butter, then sprinkle with a bit of the chopped peanuts.  Top each with another square.  Spread about 1 1/2 Tbsp of the peanut butter on top of each, and top with more peanuts.  Serve!

*Dark Chocolate Peanut ButterMakes about 3+ cups

2 cups raw peanuts

2 tsp sea salt

1/4 cup agave nectar or honey, or to taste

3 Tbsp raw cocoa powder

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

About 1 cup raw almond milk

In a food processor, blend peanuts until very smooth. Add sea salt, agave nectar (more if you like it sweeter), cocoa powder, and vanilla. Process to blend until combined, then with the motor running, add enough almond milk to make it smooth like frosting consistency, and blend until well combined. Enjoy!  Store in the fridge in a jar with a lid.”

via Fragrant Vanilla Cake.

Got Raw Milk?

Apparently if you live in France you can buy RAW milk out in the open without being arrested!  Can you imagine?  They even have these cute little tiny house dispensers in front of grocery stores where you can help yourself while you get to hear mooooing while your milk jug is being filled.  Check out French Letters for additional photos.

“in a French supermarket parking lot, was a little hut with a raw milk distribution system that was even more ingenious.  The machine will sell you a sterilized plastic bottle for 20 centimes, or a glass bottle for 3 Euros.  The milk is 1 Euro a liter, but you can get smaller amounts if you wish.  You buy a bottle, or bring your own, insert it into the machine, and immediately ice cold milk issues, accompanied by loud mooing sounds.  They might even be described as bellowing sounds, loud enough that every person in the parking lot, and possibly some shoppers in the store who are busy buying milk in small cardboard cubes that keep forever, know that someone somewhere is buying raw milk.  It couldn’t be less secret.

The sign on the machine instructs you to use a perfectly clean bottle, to refrigerate the contents immediately, and to drink your milk within three days of purchase.  In other words, the machine treats you like the adult you are, except that it moos at you, in a most delightful way.”

via Got (Raw) Milk! « FRENCH LETTERS.

 

Hario Coffee Mill

I just love that this is a person powered appliance but more importantly no loud EEEEEEEEE sound first thing in the morning!   You can find this on Thanksgiving Coffee’s website.  Your support of their business goes toward a special effort to have coffee sailed to the United States via wind power using no fossil fuels.  Go check them out on Carrotmob for more info. Below is a little video from Carrotmob that talks about how your purchases can help them succeed at being the first coffee company to transport their coffee to the United States with a big boat, lots of wind, and some burly sailors.

“A beautifully designed and highly functional hand-cranked burr grinder.

This graceful hand-cranked burr grinder combines high fired ceramic burrs with a simple and functional design to create the ideal home grinder. Easily adjustable and able to produce a grind suitable for espresso, various pour-overs, and French Press, the Canister Mill is a must have for the coffee connoisseurs home brewing or travel kit.”

via Hario Coffee Mill — Thanksgiving Coffee Company Online Store.