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A Salute to Absolute Organics

This week marks the end of an era for our family.  It was the first week in 11-1/2 years that we were no longer enrolled in an organic produce delivery service.  That service, Absolute Organics, has been discontinued as its owners, Steve and Vonda Hodun, redirect their energies to other pursuits.

I have never met Steve or Vonda in person, but I think of them as family. ¬†For those 11-1/2 years, we exchanged weekly emails, recipes, and stories about interesting and exotic vegetables. Their little boy grew up and so did our “little” girl. Most importantly, their stewardship of their incredible family business brought numerous new fruits and vegetables to our doorstep, forever altering our perspectives and our palates.

Yesterday, I shopped for produce without considering what was coming in my next delivery for the first time in a very long time. Absolute Organics was there though, in my mind, as I thought about what I’d want to cook this week and how much those choices have been influenced by my virtual produce family.

Vonda and Steve, I can’t thank you enough for your vision and seemingly tireless service! ¬†We salute you!

Instant Pot For the Win!

This year’s black Friday retail extravaganza brought deep, deep discounts on Instant Pot prices. ¬†I caved under the pressure, and haven’t looked back!

First up, one of my “go to” vegetarian recipes from Epicurious.com, lentil bolognese. ¬†Of all of my vegetarian recipes, I consider this the one that wins the “Most Likely to Convert a Meat Eater” award. ¬†The lentils mimic the texture of ground beef in a way that is almost uncanny with lots of flavor and none of the saturated fat.

The Instant Pot can sauté, but I was so focused on testing out the pressure cooking features that I took the easy way through this recipe.  Everything was chopped, dumped into the pot, then the pot was set for 20 minutes of pressure cooking on the manual setting.  At the end, I had a recipe that looked, smelled and tasted just like the one I usually simmer for hours, with a lot less work.  Instant Pot, I think I love you!

Weekday Lunches — Week of 4/27/15

Here’s what I expect to be eating for lunch this week:

Monday – leftover eggdrop soup with zucchini noodles; lebanese spinach pie

Tuesday – crunchy Asian salad (kale, Napa cabbage, lettuce, carrots, wasabi peas, tofu)

Wednesday – black bean burrito

Thursday –¬†Bi Bim Bap

Friday – crunchy Asian salad