Category Archives: recipe

Beer Pickled Okra

Today was hot. There is no way around it. Fortunately I was able to make it to the Farmers’ Market before the heat really picked up. When I got there I realized that okra season is in full swing. This is great considering that my plants still need another week or so. I picked up a few pounds of okra from two different farmers. Here’s what I made:

Ad Astra Okra Pickles
Okra (Lawrence, KS)
1 pt Ad Astra Ale (Free State Brewery)
1 pt Filtered Water
1 pt White Vinegar
1 tsp Black Peppercorn
1 tsp Brown Mustard Seed
Onion Powder to taste
Habanero Pepper to taste
3 cloves of garlic
1 bay leaf

312Okra Pickles
1 pt 312 Urban Wheat Ale (Goose Island)
1 pt Filtered Water
1 pt White Vinegar
1 tsp Black Peppercorn
1 tsp Brown Mustard Seed
Onion Powder to taste
Habanero Pepper to taste
3 cloves of garlic
1 bay leaf

Each recipe makes approximately one quart.

We Need Your Kale Recipes!

ImageMy friends and I recently traded some garden fresh kale for kale chips. We shortly started talking about the many recipes that include kale and how cool it would be to compile them into one zine. With that I am asking for your kale recipes.

This cookZine will be crowdsourced and anti-copyright. The cookZine’s contents will be freely downloadable. Our only requirements are that 1) kale is the star of the dish and 2) the recipe is vegan. Recipes can be posted in the comment section of this post or emailed to kristapslentil (at) gmail (dot) com. Questions/comments can be submitted the same way.

Kale Chips FTW

Two weeks ago my parents visited the Pickles Not Pipe Bombs factory. They, like me, enjoy vegetables and experimenting in food preparation. While at the farmer’s market we picked up A LOT of kale. All different varieties. It was great. However, we realized that we had to do something with it. I went into the ceegar box of recipes and came up with gundru and kale chips.

Consensus said that we’d make Kale chips. That was fine with me as it gave me a chance to use a recipe from Thrive Foods: 200 Plant-Based Recipes for Peak Health. This book is chock full of vegetable based recipes. Some are super simple and others are gourmet. On top of that, Brendan Brazier also dedicates a portion of the book to making the connection between diet and the environment.

Try this recipe and then buy the book.

Salt and Vinegar Kale Chips
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Water for blending
1/2 tsp sea salt, to taste
1 bunch curly kale (I’ve used many times of kale. All have worked.)

  • Combine the sunflower seeds, both vinegars, and sea salt in a blender or food processor. Blend for several minutes until a chunky paste has formed, adding a tablespoon of water into the blender as needed to assist with blending. (The more water that is added, the longer the chips will take in the oven.)
  • Strip off the kale leaves into a bowl and discard the stems. Tear up any large pieces roughly, and pour the creamed mixture on top of the kale. Using clean hands, massage the mixture into the kale for one more minute to evenly coat the leaves.

Oven Method

  • Heat the oven to 200°F. Place a piece of parchment paper on top of a baking sheet, then spread out the kale chips evenly over the surfaceto ensure even cooking time
  • Bake for about 2 hours (time varies according to relative humidity), or until kale has dried out and is crispy. Keep a close eye on the kale at the end of its cooking process to make sure it does not burn.
  • Enjoy immediately or keep in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Dehydrator Method

  • Warm the dehydrator to 115°F. Spread out the kale onto 4 mesh dehydrator sheets, and dehydrate for 10-12 hours, or until crispy (time may very depending on relative humidity).
  • Enjoy immediately or keep in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

RECIPE: Chia Seed Drink

Yesterday I made an extremely rare visit to a leading big box “health” food store. While there I quickly starting scoping the various aisles for new product ideas. Looking at the refrigerated beverage section I saw a bottled chia seed beverage. For those that don’t know, chia seeds are being pushed as a sort of super food. I’m not sure if they are a super food, but their nutritional profile is pretty good.

While I’m glad that different kinds of food and beverage are getting some recognition, I am amazed at how pricey these things are. I support cottage industry and I definitely support small-scale producers. What I don’t support, however, are a few brands taking over a “niche” market. For example, I have been told that my pickled okra is too expensive at $5.00 a pint. That’s because people can find mass-produced “pickles” at the locally grocery store for half the price. I would argue that local, small-scale producers use superior ingredients and also support other local producers and markets. Now with people accustomed to paying $2.50 a pint for pickled okra, there is a barrier to entry for small-scale producers. Consumers are left with supporting the large-scale producers or search for competing markets. (This leads to a different topic for a different article.)

Back to chia seed drinks!

While seeing chia seeds floating in a glass bottle brought a smile to my face, I was saddened at the reputation that this sort of drink would now get. Just like kombucha has been solidified as a health food or bourgeois novelty, the delightful chia seed elixir will be as well.

Instead of sitting idly by, I would like to a share a basic adaptation of a Chia Seed drink that I started making after I read Thrive Nutrition by Brendan Brazier. I also suggest picking up Pinole Recipes by Matt Frazier. This book has a number of recipes using chia seeds.

Basic Chia Seed Elixir

Soak one teaspoon of chia seeds in  ten ounces of water. Let sit for ten minutes and then add the juice of one lime. Sweeten with agave, stevia, or honey to taste. The last step is optional as I generally skip the sweetener.

I use this recipe more as a guide. I have used many other juices and have even left the juice out. Experiment to your palate’s content.

Please note that the links in this post are affiliate links.

Extra Cabbage? Make Sauerkraut!

Although sauerkraut – German for “sour cabbage” – is thought of as a German invention, Chinese laborers building the Great Wall of China over 2,000 years ago ate it as standard fare. Chinese sauerkraut, made from shredded cabbage fermented in RICE WINE, most likely it was brought to Europe 1000 years later by Gengis Kahn after plundering China. 

Although in Germany instead of using the wine they dry cured it by sprinkling salt on the shredded cabbage. The water is then drawn out of the cabbage to make the juice that you see that accompanies the kraut.

The Dutch , who were great sea-fearing traders used sauerkraut on their ships as it did not need refrigeration and helped prevent scurvy.

Excerpted from The History of Sauerkraut.

My friends approached me with a problem. They had ten heads of cabbage but could no longer stand the smell of it. Not because the cabbage was  bad, but because they had grown so much of it. I was more than happy to take it off their hands as it was a long time since I made sauerkraut.

I didn’t have much time, so I decided to use the food processor to shred the cabbage quickly. I added about a quarter cup of rejuvelac. I then layered the cabbage and sprinkled salt and caraway seeds in between the layers. This is all done to taste.

I covered the jar per Sally Fallon’s recipes and put it in a dark place. After a couple of days I had a nice jar of on the fly sauerkraut.

sea salt
caraway seeds (optional)
rejuvelac (optional)

– Shred the cabbage
– Layer the cabbage, salt, and caraway seeds
– Add rejuvelac

I don’t usually measure my ingredients when I ferment food. Peruse my cookZines for approximations for salt usage.

For more information check out this free eBook on Sauerkraut:

Recipe: Paleo Vegan Crackers

Today I made crackers. To be honest, I make crackers fairly regularly. Normally  I use a recipe from Girl Gone Primal that I found on Mark’s Daily Apple. Today, however, I tried something new. An experiment if you will.

Here’s what I used

  • 1/2 cup of raw sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup of coconut flower
  • 1 cup of sesame seeds
  • 1 teaspoon (or so) of Coconut Aminos
  • 3/8 cup of water (you might have to adjust this)

Here’s what I did

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°
  2. In a food processor, process the sunflower seeds until they are flour-like.
  3. Add the coconut flour to the food processor. Process for about 30 seconds.
  4. Add the sesame seeds. Process for about 30 seconds
  5. Slowly add the water and coconut aminos while the food processor is mixing the dough.
  6. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread coconut oil over the parchment paper.
  7. Now comes the customization! Roll the dough to the desired thickness. I made a cracker that was slightly thinner than a saltine. Also, I covered the dough in parchment paper before I rolled it.
  8. Score the dough. Make shapes or be like me and make boring rectangles.
  9. Bake! I set the timer for 17 minutes and found that worked perfectly. The cooking time, however, will vary based on the thickness of the cracker. Check them. Pull them once they begin to brown.

Voila! These are delicious.

CookZine: Pickles Not Pipe Bombs, #1

Here is a the first issue of Pickles Not Pipe Bombs, the official CookZine of Pickles Not Pipe Bombs. I ran out of the initial run of the hard copy after a very successful Kaw Valley Seed Fair. Please share the link with your friends.

Click here for a direct download.