Fathers and foods that make “the special” day

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By Diane Adam June 19, 2016 No Comments on Fathers and foods that make “the special” day

Celebrating Dad and foods that are special!

 

Today grills all across America will own the day. As families celebrate Father’s Day, it seems that when it comes to food the first request from dad is: I want to eat anything  grilled. Who can blame them? The weather in June is perfect to fire up dad’s favorite piece of meat, seafood or veggies. So fire up the grill and let’s celebrate all things dad it’s Father’s Day!

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Dad and I back in the 1990s enjoying an outdoor meal in Boulder.

Looking back on my childhood Father’s Day celebrations, a cooler filled with uncooked hot dogs and hamburgers were brought to one of nature’s gifts: City County Park located outside our hometown of Princeton, IL. Dad cooked the meat while the rest of us ran through the towering maple trees. After lunch, we enjoyed a hike down the slope of the park that felt like a 14,000-footer to us kids with big eyes. Don’t tell anyone, but it is a mere hill compared to the staggering Rocky Mountains. Nevertheless, we loved it and it was fun hiking the “steep” trail with dad.

The  Father’s Day menu of burgers and hot dogs were always happily consumed. But when it comes to dad and the meals we shared together, I delight more in the dishes that connect me to him during the rest of the year. Dad was more than a grill master. He was a french toast master, scrambled eggs extraordinaire and most of all he made “the special.”

The special consisted of store-bought  fixins that bring laughter and tears to my siblings and I to this day. I won’t go into the nitty gritty of what was in the special. Think everything but the kitchen sink. The recipe included pasta, ground beef, a can of corn, spring onions if in season, pasta sauce and a few secret ingredients that I still don’t know. No fancy stuff for us here. Dad was trying his best to fill the void of my mom’s cooking—after she died suddenly. This was our go to meal on the weekdays—and we loved it—not so much because of the taste, but rather it was made by dad. And when he served it on those white paper plates we felt loved and above all—special.

Dad also prepared a dose of healthy food. My dad was 100 percent Greek and all of us siblings know how to make a killer Greek avgolemeno soup. His Greek chicken—flavored drumsticks with lemon and oregano—were a staple that he prepared on Sunday mornings. He prepared the dish, popped it into a low-temperature-oven setting and off we drove to church. Yes, he left the oven on as we merrily went on our way.

I have so many fond memories of my dad and food. He ate some really great, healthy and weird stuff—sometimes all mixed together at once. A few of us brave siblings tried some of his dad mixes. I think just to be more favored by him. I was too afraid to try the mixes but that was ok by him. He still loved us completely each and every day. His palette wasn’t fancy. In fact, his favorite was to simply walk to our garden and grab a handful of spring onions. Those were his bag of chips.

Memories connected to dads and food happen every day. All across America, we sit as families and share a meal three times a day. While eating we are also consuming memories—talking, sharing, laughing and more.

Each of us has a few tender memories or better yet, hilarious ones. Perhaps you have a memory of dad and his mastery or failures in the kitchen.

Today I encourage all of you to celebrate dad with all the food that he treasures—spring onions and all!

Happy Father’s Day!

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Fooducopia: your “great food near me” breakfast choice!

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By Diane Adam June 18, 2016 No Comments on Fooducopia: your “great food near me” breakfast choice!

Fooducopia breakfast is a “great food near me” choice!

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Garden benedict featuring mixed organic veggies with hollandaise with two pasture-raised poached eggs served on Rudi’s organic english muffins.

“Good, honest food that doesn’t tease the brain.” —Tim Lymberopoulos, owner of Fooducopia.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and sometimes finding the best vegetarian and organic breakfast food near me  for the first meal of the day can be tricky.

Because when it comes to ordering breakfast, there is that ever popular question: do you want sausage links or bacon with that? But for those of you who are not choosing a side of meat for breakfast or any meal, that question goes flat and makes your eggs lonely and boring. Searching out breakfast food near me that includes vegetarian and organic is a healthy choice that will help you power through your workday or weekend.

Fooducopia, voted best brunch Denver, prides itself on making you feel right at home with our vegetarian and organic choices for the most important meal of the day.

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Fooducopia is passionate about providing an array of organic foods.

“We created a menu of healthful options to meet the needs and wants of all our customers,” said owner Tim Lymberopoulos, adding that “Fooducopia is passionate about using locally sourced and organic foods.”

Take for example the mixed veggie hash filled with organic in-season sautéed veggies. A pairing favorite for any breakfast entree that features an array of organic garden goodness. No harmful pesticides here for breakfast.

If your looking to take it to the next level, then the garden benedict is the perfect order to place. Mixed organic veggies with hollandaise accompany two pasture-raised poached eggs all served on Rudi’s organic English muffins is a crowd pleaser. This delightful dish is served with a welcoming choice of organic potatoes or veggies and will leave you fully satisfied and ready to tackle the day ahead of you.

If you prefer to go on the wild side then be sure to order the mushroom benedict featuring hazel dell wild mushrooms, organic tomatoes, organic spinach with Mini Moos goat and feta and topped with a heavenly drizzle of hollandaise. This hearty and wholesome breakfast is a wonderful choice for a vegetarian weekend brunch or weekday treat that needs no justification.

Looking to pack extra protein into your breakfast? Fooducopia’s ever so popular farmyard scrambler features farmyard organic leafy greens, tofu and organic potatoes. Like many soya foods, tofu is a versatile ingredient that features many health benefits like essential amino acids. Can’t beat that for a breakfast start.

So if you’re looking to maximize healthy eating at the breakfast table, Fooducopia is it.

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GMO labeling: victory for the little guy

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By Diane Adam June 14, 2016 No Comments on GMO labeling: victory for the little guy

GMO labeling debuts July 1: a victory for the little guy

GMO

 

“I think I can. I think I can. I think I can. I know I can.” —Watty Piper, The Little Engine That Could.

 

 

In an earlier blog posted here, we championed the bravery and fortitude the state of Vermont endured for a GMO mandatory labeling law, which goes into effect July 1. The result has been gigantic in relation to the fact that Vermont, which ranks 43rd in size among the 50 United States, is the little state that could when all others refused to climb the mountain.

This is not to say that other states are not fighting for the right to know what is in our food. But rather, this act of bravado needs to be acknowledged as such—a little engine who thinks it can.

If we scale it down, the GMO labeling law is simple: our right to know what is in our foods.

If we make it political or emotional the fight turns ugly and nasty, causing sides to throw insult at whoever tries to challenge their position. I prefer to stick to the basics. We all sit down at the table three times daily to eat. Don’t you agree we have a right to know what is in that food when we pull up our chair to eat? I prefer not to guess.

But to me there is an even bigger soapbox to stand on. This is a gentle reminder that sometimes the little guy has the power just as much, if not more, to win the fight. Big corporations and political pressure can come at anyone with a forceful blow. But to me the little guy who stands—shaking on the inside—but ever so fierce and brave on the outside will prevail. A little engine who thinks it can.

In 17 days, Vermont’s GMO labeling law goes into effect. Big food companies are scrambling out of fear that this will cause complete chaos to our food system.

Others however have taken a different approach: acceptance.

Big food companies Campbell’s Soup Co., General Mills, Kellogg’s and others have resigned and begun to label their products. I have not witnessed chaos in my community, have you?

Perhaps we need to remind ourselves of the old saying: if you can’t beat ’em: join ’em or tell ourselves—”I know I can.”

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Glacier Ice Cream is summer’s sweet treat at Fooducopia

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By Diane Adam June 10, 2016 No Comments on Glacier Ice Cream is summer’s sweet treat at Fooducopia

High summer temps call for the stupendous: Glacier Ice Cream

 

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Life is like an ice-cream cone, you have to lick it one day at a time. —Charles M. Schulz

It’s officially arrived! Clear, sunny skies and high temperatures are here and that means one thing— ice cream weather. The temps are rising so be sure to stop in at Fooducopia and cool down with a pint of Glacier Homemade Ice Cream.

Glacier started in 2001 in Boulder, CO by Mark Mallen. In 2003 Ruth Templeton opened the second store on the Hill in Boulder. And she has been there ever since.

Don’t live near a Glacier storefront? Don’t despair, Fooducopians, we have a wide selection of flavors to choose from in a convenient pint size. To share or not to share is up to you?

Fooducopia, voted best brunch Denver, features eight different pint choices.

Glacier Apple Pie

pintGlacier Cappuccino

Glacier Chocolate Mousse

Glacier Coconut Stracciatella

Glacier Mint Oreo

Glacier Salted Caramel Oreo

Glacier Strawberry

Glacier Vanilla Bean

We all know the best ice cream should be rich and creamy. So we asked Ruth what are the few tricks up her sleeve that makes Glacier stand out as the finest frozen treat.

“We start with a high quality base from a local dairy here,” she said. “Our ingredients we add are unique for each flavor, plus it’s made fresh right here in the stores everyday.”

In fact, more than 1,000 flavors have been created to date, with new ones rolling out every week.

Like any treasured treat, once you’ve tried Glacier ice cream it’s hard to replace. Just ask Tami Palmer, who lived in Boulder for many years, but recently relocated to the suburbs of Chicago.

“I don’t recall my first encounter with Glacier ice cream, but have great memories attached to the place,” said Tami. 

“While we lived in Boulder, we had a Sunday night tradition of going to Glacier after dinner. If we didn’t order chocolate, our dog got to lick the spoon. She’d start squealing in anticipation as we approached the Glacier parking lot.  

In fact, Tami shared a special milestone at Glacier.  “Our daughter had her first ice cream there— birthday cake,” she said.

Finding a replacement in the Midwest, has not been easy.

Now, having since left Colorado, Glacier consistently comes up as the number one culinary experience we miss the most. On trips back, I’ve taken my rental car and driven directly down 28th Street to their location, before stopping in to say hi to friends, before doing anything!”  

So what’s the most treasured could-not-stop-myself-from-having-the-whole-pint-myself flavor?

“The Salted caramel Oreo is the biggest seller,” said Tim Lymberopoulos, owner of Fooducopia. “Once you try it you are hooked,” he smiled admittedly.

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The salted caramel Oreo features a mouth-watering blend of three caramels plus a touch of salt. Enough to make anyone scream for ice cream.

“Our customers enjoy the variety of flavors to choose from as well. And we think it’s great that Glacier puts an emphasis on using local ingredients,” said Lymberopoulos.

Phenomenally good on their own, Glacier pint flavors also pair nicely, with sprinkles, chopped nuts or sliced bananas. Or you might prefer to skip the add ons. Regardless, what is essential is a spoon, which will furthermore produce a smile.

The forecast calls for high temps and that means one thing—ice cream.

Happy Summer!

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What comes first the chicken farmer or corporate power?

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By Diane Adam June 7, 2016 No Comments on What comes first the chicken farmer or corporate power?

Support for chicken farmers in the most unlikely places

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HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver did an 18-minute segment last year on the punishments placed upon chicken farmers from the corporate chicken bullies. Screen Grab.

“Our food system belongs in the hands of many family farmers, not under the control of a handful of corporations.”—Farm Aid President Willie Nelson.

What came first the chicken or the egg?

Debated for centuries, perhaps the question we should now be asking is what comes first the chicken farmer or corporate power?

If you don’t know by now, chicken is the most popular meat in the U.S.? Just how many chickens are there in the world for consumption? More than 50 billion. Yes, that is how many chickens are reared every year for both their meat and eggs.

So that must mean there are some extremely wealthy chicken farmers. Supply and demand, right?

No. This is where the philosophical debate takes a greedy turn. There are four powerful corporations that produce poultry. They are: Tyson Foods, Sanderson Farms, Perdue, and Pilgrim’s Pride. And what do they require from chicken farmers? Collusion. Farmers must take on massive amounts of debt to secure a contract with them.

Chicken farmers have long been unable to make a fair living due to the unfair contracts with these powerful poultry corporations, leaving many famers in dire  debt.

“Fair living is out of reach for the farmers who raise poultry in an industry where the power of a few giant corporations leaves them trapped in a rigged marketplace and vulnerable to abuse,” according to farmaid.org.

The average American consumes 84 pounds of chicken a year. But many chicken farmers’ live under the poverty line. It just doesn’t add up?

So who can protect the chicken farmer from these abuses?

This is where you start to think about the government, right. Well, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s ability to protect the chicken farmers was blocked by a rider inserted into the House Appropriations Committee’s agriculture bill. Back door politics putting corporate power first.

The USDA Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) is designed to protect poultry farmers, but “inside the beltway politics” caters to the large corporations, lobbyists and dollar, rather than what is fair for the chicken farmer.

Then who is the champion of fighting for chicken farmers?

Many pundits and even politicians turn to English comedian John Oliver. Time Magazine calls it the “John Oliver Effect.”

HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver did an 18-minute segment last year on the punishments placed upon chicken farmers from the corporate chicken bullies. Oliver with an unabashedly sharp wit and biting political discourse exposed the unfair treatment from the powerful chicken corporations to the chicken farmers.

The segment has had over six million views on You Tube. The ripple effects were even felt in the halls of Congress. For the 2016 Agricultural bill, the bill did not include a GIPSA defunding rider. And many both in and out of politics credit the wit and wisdom of an Englishman who has a beef with the chicken corporations.

I have never lived on a farm. But I admire farmers. They work with their hands. They provide meals three times a day for thousands of nameless people. They cherish the Earth—not the dollar.

So to you John Oliver. Thank you!

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