Paleo & Primal Food, Wine, Travel & Living

Posts tagged “Diestel

Fueled by Whole Foods! (Nike Women’s Half Marathon Series)

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So, I finally had time to get out to Whole Foods and start using the gift card they gave me to feed myself during my half marathon training (the Women’s Nike Half Marathon in San Francisco on October 20th). For about $65 dollars, here’s what I bought:

  • 1/2 Gallon So Delicious Unsweetened Coconut Milk
    (will use in smoothies, sometimes morning coffee)
  • 1 pound bag frozen raspberries
    (will use in protein shakes with protein powder, ice and coconut milk)
  • 1 package Diestel sliced herbed turkey breast
    (love their products, a healthy splurge indeed!)
  • 1 head of organic cauliflower
  • 1 small block of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
    (.25 pounds or so, my biggest splurge on the list!)
  • 3 pound bag frozen triple berry blend
    (will use in protein shakes with protein powder, ice and coconut milk)
  • 2.87 pounds of broccoli crowns
  • 1.17 pounds of organic bananas
    (will use in protein shakes with protein powder, ice and coconut milk)
  • 1.82 pounds of Grenache grapes
  • 1 pound of Organic Girl Super Greens
  • 1.5 pounds of parsnips
  • .75 pounds of coconut flour
    (will use in occasional treats after long runs)
  • ,75 pounds of almond meal
    (will use sparingly to make gluten free bread or occasional treats)
  • 1 orange flesh honeydew melon (my favorite fruit!!)

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This was my awesome dinner tonight, almost all of it made from the ingredients on my shopping list today from Whole Foods. It was a Diestel Turkey salad (2 1/2 slices), on a bed of Organic Girl Super Greens (dandelion, arugula, spinach mix), 2 hard boiled eggs, 1-2 Tbs grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, eggplant “croutons” and studded with about 1/2 cup of organic Grenache grapes. I don’t typically use dressing because the egg and cheese make everything so flavorful I don’t need it. 🙂

As far as the running goes, I have an app called Runkeeper to log my daily mileage. Here’s a look at my run this past Sunday. I wanted to put in a long run on the roads because I had not done one in a while. I was even wondering if I could make it past 10 miles! Followed by the map are my mile splits:

run map

1 mi: 9:05
+12 ft elevation climb

2 mi: 9:07 +1 ft elevation climb

3 mi: 9:01 -10 ft elevation loss

4 mi: 9:18 -3 ft elevation loss

5 mi: 8:44 -18 ft elevation loss
(water stop at 5.25 miles)

6 mi: 8:59 +23 ft elevation climb
(ran kinda through the mall and through the tunnel into Old Sac… AWESOME)

7 mi: 8:09 +15 ft elevation climb

8 mi: 8:20 -5ft elevation loss

9 mi: 8:35: +4ft elevation climb
(water stop around 9 miles)

10 mi: 8:36 -3ft elevation loss

11 mi: 8:47 +4ft elevation climb

12 mi: (last .24 of my run in front of the Sacramento Zoo) 9:38 -8ft elevation loss

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I am planning on running a short race the first weekend of October, but otherwise will mostly be concentrating on building my road tolerance and endurance.
If you would like to check out my profile and my running on Runkeeper, click here.

Look for another post using my groceries from Whole Foods, coming this week and more on my training as well!

You can find Whole Foods on Facebook here and on twitter here. My local store is in Roseville on Facebook here. The Nike Women’s Series is on Facebook here. Now get out there and go running! 🙂

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Natural Products Expo West & My Trip to Anaheim

I have to say: I am the luckiest unlucky person I know. I just got the boot from my job, but that allowed me to go on a (pretty much) free trip to Anaheim to attend the Natural Products Expo West. So, I guess when one door slams in your face, another one opens and it leads to Disneyland! 😉

best of west

The Natural Products Expo West showcased a record number of new natural and organic product launches, and provided the definitive community platform for brands, retailers and influencers in the natural, organic and healthy living sector.

Natural Products Expo West drew more than 63,000 industry members and 2,428 exhibiting companies at the Anaheim Convention Center, March 7-10, 2013 in Anaheim, CA. Engredea and Nutracon, the ingredient and supply chain’s most comprehensive trade show and conference were co-located with Natural Products Expo West.

Natural Products Expo West provided a unique view into the forces and product trends fueling the growth of the global natural products industry in every category, including food, beverage, supplements, beauty, household and pet products.

Trends prominent at Natural Products Expo West, with significantly more product options launching into the market, include gluten- and allergen-free products, sprouted foods, healthy snacks, non-dairy alternatives, vegan and paleo offerings, and healthier, cleaner kids’ products.

Natural Products Expo East 2013 will return to the Baltimore Convention Center, Sept. 25-28, 2013 in Baltimore, MD. Follow @NatProdExpo or #ExpoWest on Twitter for ongoing conversations or connect on their Facebook page to keep up with their latest developments.

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sante

My favorite products at Expo West? Well, I just love the Diestels and their line of deli meats. And I picked Sante Nuts Pistachios as Best of the West. Other favorites were True Bar (Hazelnut especially!!) and the Zing bar. I especially love it when the marketers give me a whole case of their product!! The aforementioned bars are not completely Paleo, but are gluten-free and non-GMO and totally appropriate for an occasional treat. Especially on heavy training days.

You can follow @NatProdExpo or #ExpoWest on twitter for ongoing conversations or connect on their Facebook page.

During my time in Anaheim, I stayed at Ayres Hotel Anaheim. The hotel is located close to everything! It is directly across the street from the Honda Center (where the Mighty Ducks play) and walking distance from Angels Stadium. It is a short shuttle ride (ART!!) from the Anaheim Convention Center, Disneyland and California Adventure.

ayres-hotels-anaheim-exterior

I loved staying at Ayres I will stay there every time I visit Anaheim. I enjoyed the nightly wine and guacamole reception from 5:30-6:30pm. You’d think they’d planned this just for me as much as I love wine and guacamole! 🙂 My room was spacious and was equipped with a refrigerator and microwave. Very useful for Paleo people and having to bring your own food along when traveling. There is free breakfast available daily with fresh fruit, oatmeal, cereals, eggs, sausage, bacon, coffee, tea, milk, juices, and more. I was able to enjoy the eggs because they don’t add any weird oils or butter to them.

One of the best things about Ayres was the staff. They were so nice and accommodating. They allowed me to leave my bags at the hotel during Expo West. I drive a Smart car with no trunk, and I didn’t want things in my car left visible to potential thieves (I had to park at Angels Stadium to shuttle to the convention center). Also, during my stay they explained to me how Anaheim Resort Transportation works to me (and a few other guests), so I was able to save $10 on parking at Disneyland.

I worked out in the gym two days of my stay and discovered a great bike path to run on directly beside the hotel. So, if you like to run outdoors or if you are a cyclist, take note. This is a great place to stay for you! I ran three miles out and back. It’s a semi-hilly and fun run that will definitely burn some calories. There’s also an outdoor pool and a spa.

ayres
So Ayres Hotel and staff… thanks. You guys are rad. Follow them on twitter here and like them on Facebook here. They run a lot of deals and do a lot of giveaways. It’s such a great place to stay and I will definitely be back!

Lastly, I want to thank Disneyland. I was able to be a kid again for a day with my press credential. I had so much fun. I rode so many rides! Space Mountain, The Matterhorn, It’s a Small World, Pirates of the Caribbean, Snow White’s Scary Adventures, Haunted Mansion and Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. I was even able to find a Paleo friendly snack at Bengal Barbecue! They have meat and vegetable skewers!!

disney

I think my favorite ride is at California Adventure. It’s called Radiator Springs Racers and based on the Cars movie. I also checked out Mickey’s Fun Wheel and Twilight Zone Tower of Terror while I was there. It was definitely the Happiest Place on Earth for me and my only regret is that Andy or my nieces were not there with me to enjoy it. Here are a few pictures I took while I was there. I got my picture with Donald Duck because we share the same birthday. 🙂 Thank you so much, Disneyland! Catch them on twitter here and on Facebook here.

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Like Unique Varietals? Try St. Amant Winery in Lodi

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If you’ve never heard of St. Amant Winery, here’s an introduction. They are located in Lodi where lately, especially the last 3 years, some of my favorite red wines have also originated.

I first discovered St. Amant wines at a tasting at Treasure Island (in San Francisco of all places) during Fleet Week. I had the St. Amant Barbera and I thought it was the best red wine there. So, my recent interest in local Tempranillos has me searching around Lodi  to see what I can find. It’s becoming more and more popular of a varietal there. It turns out that St. Amant has been growing Tempranillo a long time. Their 2009 was their 8th vintage, so I’m guessing they’re not just trying to be trendy. 😉

In fact, St. Amant was growing grapes prior to the beginning of commercial wine sales in Lodi. In 1979, Tim Spencer (the late father of the current owner, Stuart Spencer) owned a couple of acres of Zinfandel vines and grafted them to five Douro Valley Portuguese varieties: TintaCao,Touriga, Alvarelhao, Souzao, and Bastardo. By 1981, he produced his first vintage port.

In 1996, the winery relocated to Lodi. St. Amant (named after Stuart’s mother’s maiden name) is one of the first wineries in Lodi to list Lodi on their label. Since the move, Stuart has been making some of the most interesting and food friendly wines including: a Verdelho, the aformentioned Barbera and Tempranillo, a Touriga, a red blend: Speakeasy Red, and of course the ever popular Old Vine Zinfandel (2 varieties). The current lineup also includes 3 different kinds of Port.

Last night’s food pairing (with the 2008 Tempranillo) was a baked sweet potato topped with broccoli, onions, hard boiled egg, and Diestel Turkey Chorizo. I also added a little Greek yogurt and black pepper. 😉

I encourage you to visit St. Amant this weekend, especially if you are looking for a special bottle of wine as a gift. They are located at 1 Winemaster Way, Lodi, CA. You can also find them at Total Wine & More or fax your order from this form here.

You can like Lodi Wine on Facebook here.


Happy Thanksgiving to All!

 

Hey! I am headed out on vacation–sorry no blogs for at least a week or so, but I wanted to throw a wine pick your way before I go. We made cabbage rolls and stuffed delicate squash with some ground Diestel turkey chorizo and had some spinach bread on the side, so that we could try out this Merlot/Pinot Noir blend in a PURSE! LOL… It’s made by Cantina di Soave and the label is called Volére. Show up with it at your next holiday gathering, and you’ll be the hit of the party! 🙂 Each $15 Volére cardboard purse (with a bag-in-box setup inside) holds about 2 bottles of wine.

Cheers and Happy Thanksgiving to all! 🙂


Whole Foods Holiday Meals featuring Diestel Turkey

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For the second year in a row, I was happy to partner with Whole Foods to show you some holiday menu items available for ordering.

The holidays are supposed to be full of celebration and fun, and Whole Foods can help take the hassle out of things like making a grocery list, figuring out what to make and how much, not to mention the hours of time you will save not having to prepare the meal.

I picked up my grocery bag full of items last Friday night, and on Saturday evening before the Clarksburg Country Run (Half Marathon), Andy and I tried them out as my pre-race meal.

The food came in a nice insulated zip up bag. (Most of the items were not Paleo, so I stuck to trying two or three things and made a salad and parsnip chips to complete my meal).

First in the bag was a fully cooked – Roasted Petite Diestel Turkey
If you read this blog, you know all about Diestel turkeys, raised in Sonora, CA by one of the last family owned and operated turkey ranches.  The bird was a smaller size breed (perfect for 2-4 people!!). It comes perfectly cooked so all you have to do is reheat before serving. The turkey is Global Animal Partnership Step 3 Rated and retails for $54.99 | 6–8 lbs

Even though the Diestel’s turkeys don’t need gravy, the next item in the bag was a quart of:
Turkey Gravy–Whole Foods gravy is slow simmered with fresh veggies, roasted turkey, garlic and herbs.  All you have to do is heat before serving and enjoy with any of our all natural turkey options. For $8.99 you get 1 quart.

Whole Foods Market Pull Apart Rolls we received in the bag were made by Grateful Bread. They come plain, but to jazz them up, I brushed them with melted butter, and added sea salt and herbs de Napa (an herb blend of lavender, sage, rosemary, and thyme). The rolls are $1.99 for the 6PK, and $2.99 for the 12 Pack.

I sliced some apples to eat with the block of Borough Market Foods Stilton.
The cheese is made from pasteurized cow’s milk with vegetarian rennet.
Texture is creamy and buttery, and pretty strong. It also pairs with Tawny Port, Pork, Pears, Figs,Walnuts, or honey. Borough Market Foods Stilton is made for WFM and is a bit younger than some other Stiltons, giving it a creamier texture. The cheese costs $18.99 per pound.

I did have a piece of the Celebration Toffee, as it was my pre-race meal. 😉
The candy is a collaborative effort between Whole Foods, Allegro Coffee, and Enstrom’s Candy Co. in Grand Junction, Colorado and is exclusive to Whole Foods Markets.  These all natural toffees are available covered in Milk Chocolate or Dark Chocolate.  The toffees are made with Allegro Celebration Caffe coffee. The toffee is actually studded with coffee beans and is 100 calories per piece. It goes for $9.99 for an 8 ounce container.

Last but not least, there was a WFM Pecan Pie in the bag. I only tasted the pecan topping and I am just not sure what Andy did with the rest of it. 😉 The pie is $16.99 for a 9″.

As for what to drink with dinner, a safe bet is always a Pinot Noir. It’s bigger and more fruit forward than burgundies, but softer than other red meat-centric red grapes. Pinot Noir can walk the middle ground–a much needed characteristic when it comes to Thanksgiving: a multi-course feast of many different flavors. The featured Pinot Noir this month at Whole Foods is the HRM Rex Goliath Pinot Noir.

To view the different options available for ordering you can go here. If you are overwhelmed by the choices (there are so many!) You can try their Traditional Roasted Turkey Dinner that serves 8 people for $99.99! That’s only $12.50 per person. It contains: a Fully Cooked Diestel Turkey • Savory Herb Stuffing • Mashed Potatoes • Turkey Gravy
Dinner Rolls • Classic Cranberry Relish • and a Pumpkin Pie.

Happy Holidays! P.S. Last day to order for Thanksgiving is November 19th!


Spinach Bread, Where Have You Been My Whole Life?!?


WARNING!! Do not make this bread. It will only make you crave more of it. I got the recipe from my friend and fellow food blogger Julia Mueller who writes the wonderfully delicious blog The Roasted Root. I met her during the Diestel Turkey Ranch visit–she and her boyfriend were sitting across from Andy and I at dinner. It’s great to meet people who have heard of Paleo or even slightly follow the diet. They asked me if I had ever heard of “spinach bread”, and I said, yes, I think I had heard about it on Mark’s Daily Apple, but I never made it and kind of just forgot about it. They gave me the URL to her website and the link to the recipe. Recipe tweaks such as using collard greens instead of spinach were discussed, as well as using half spinach/half collards. Whatever you do, MAKE A DOUBLE BATCH! 🙂 It’s like…”Spinach bread…where have you been all my life?” It’s not that it tastes like bread… but the texture is flexible and you can pick it up and it doesn’t fall apart… making it perfect to cut into squares or use as a wrap… a spinach blanket… oh, it’s just wonderful… 🙂

And then…what did I make to fill the bread? I met Joan and Heidi Diestel in Davis a few nights ago to buy some of their chicken eggs (not really available/distributed except in Sonora) because they are the best eggs I have ever eaten. Hey, eggs are like one of my favorite foods. I didn’t know when I would be able to meet up with my egg suppliers again, so I bought 4 dozen. I told you, I love eggs. 🙂

Instead of just eggs, Joan and Heidi sent me home with 4 varieties of ground turkey to try. They call this line of turkey product “chubs”. On Saturday night, I cracked open the regular variety and decided that since the spinach bread was flavored with sundried tomatoes and mushrooms, I would flavor the turkey with herbs and spices found in Italian cuisine. On the side, Andy and I had one of our favorite things: Parsnip Chips–which also happen to be addictive. Below is what I came up with:

Spinach Bread (this is the recipe doubled)
Ingredients
3 pounds frozen chopped collard greens (1.5 bags)
6 eggs
6 tablespoons butter or olive oil
2 tablespoon oil from the sun-dried tomatoes
10 cloves garlic
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
2 cups mushrooms, chopped
salt, pepper to taste

Procedure:
Put the oven on at 350 degrees. Spread the greens out on a sheet pan and for 10 minutes or until the greens thaw out. Heat the oils and butter (if you are using butter) garlic, mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes. Cook the ingredients until the mushrooms have reduced and absorbed the garlic and the oils. (5-7 minutes) You’ll be able to smell when they are done. 🙂

After you remove the greens from the over, squeeze the water out of them. Show everyone how mighty you are by doing it with your bare hands. ;). Beat the eggs in a large mixing bowl, then place the greens in the mixing bowl with the beaten eggs.  Add the sauteed ingredients into the mixing bowl and mix all ingredients well, ensuring the eggs are well incorporated.

Line a sheet pan with parchment, and spread the “bread” batter across it. Bake until the bread dries out in the middle and the edges begin to brown. This will take about 40-45 minutes. Now for the meat filling!

Italian-O Diestel Turkey Patties (makes 4-5)
Ingredients
One “chub” Diestel ground turkey (regular variety)
2 Tbs fresh or dried basil
3 Tbs chopped garlic
2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 chopped onion
2 Tbs dried oregano
2 tsp thyme
1 egg
1/2 cup pasta sauce
salt and pepper to season

Procedure
Brown the onion in a skillet with 1 Tbs olive oil. Add the herbs to the pan and heat them slightly to bring out their flavor. Allow to cool slightly and then add the egg and the onion mixture to the ground turkey in a bowl, and add 1/2 cup of your favorite pasta sauce (we used 365 Organic from Whole Foods). Mix with your hands until well combined and form into patties. Then use the same skillet you used to brown the onion to heat some more olive oil and cook the patties. You only need to flip them one time and they will be fragile, so make sure the pan is hot and you give the patty enough time to cook on the first side. Flip and brown the other side and remove from the pan.

Then cut the cooled spinach bread and assemble your turkey patties. Top with more pasta sauce and another slice of spinach bread. And there you go! 🙂

You can find Julia and  The Roasted Root on Facebook here. And you’ll probably be able to find me making more spinach bread tonight. 🙂


Whole Foods Farm-to-Table Dinner

On October 18th, Andy and I were invited to preview the new Whole Foods Market in Davis and to a Farm-to-Table Dinner put on by Whole Foods featuring the suppliers and farmers of products that were to be sold in the new store.

We appreciated the dinner so much that we felt it deserved it’s own entry here on cavegrrl.com. The dinner probably could have been a ticketed event and sold to the general public for $125 each or maybe more. It was extremely special to be seated by our new friends, The Diestels. Their turkey went into one of the SEVEN courses I will describe below.

Also, this dinner wasn’t entirely Paleo, or even Primal, sometimes Andy and I have to just take one for the team. 😉 We stayed away from the wheat of course, but I am sure there was sugar involved in some of the courses. The main thing is that the ingredients were organic, clean, and that the farmers and suppliers themselves were eating with us. That translates to me that they all believe in their own products.

The evening’s dinner began with a salmon on crostini and Lava Cap’s 2010 Sauvignon Blanc. I pretty much stuck with this wine the whole night because it was a more style style of Sauvignon Blanc (less grapefruit) that I really loved.


First Course
The first course was the K & B Seafood Trio: Steamed clams and mussels in a white wine sauce with chorizo. IT was served with oyster on the half shell, Oyster Rockefeller, and Woods Fishery shrimp cocktail. We had been hosted the previous evening for happy hour at a high end restaurant and were served shrimp cocktail, and I have to say it paled in comparison to the K & B variety.

About K & B from their website:
K & B Seafood was founded in 1992 on Long Island in New York State, U.S.A. Ideally situated to deliver fresh seafood around the world, we receive fresh product directly from local baymen and fishermen, as well as from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Located close to the Fulton Fish Market and JFK International airport, we are able to deliver fresh and frozen seafood within hours by refrigerated truck or air carrier. Local, domestic, and international customers are served the finest seafood on time.

K & B Seafood is a licensed Shucker and Packer on the USFDA Interstate Shellfish Shippers list, a USDC Approved Fisheries Establishment, an approved EU (European Union) Seafood Shipper, and is licensed by the Russian Veterinary Service Rosselkhoznadzor to export fish and seafood to the Russian Federation.

Second Course
The second course was a Riverdog Farms Butternut Squash Soup topped with blue cheese crème fraiche. I had only a few bites because I was pacing myself for the other courses to come, but it was creamy, satisfying, and made splendid use of the ingredients.

About Riverdog Farms from their website:
Our farm is certified by California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) and is located in the beautiful Capay Valley where rich creek-bottom soil, intense summer heat and winter frost make exceptionally tasty fruits and vegetables.
Partners Tim Mueller and Trini Campbell, along with their daughter and 50 full time employees, keep the farm going year-round. The seasonal, organic produce is available through Riverdog Farm’s Community Supported Agriculture Program (weekly veggie box deliveries to neighborhoods), wholesale distributors, select retail markets, and at all Berkeley Farmers’ Markets.

From our fields to your table, Riverdog Farm’s CSA program offers freshly harvested produce, every week, all year round to delivery locations in the Bay Area, Davis, and Sacramento.

Third Course
Our third course was a Santa Barbara Smokehouse Smoked Salmon Salad with argula, pickled red onions, fried capers and horseradish crème fraiche drizzle. Mmmm salmon.

About Santa Barbara Smokehouse:
Santa Barbara Smokehouse-maker of Cambridge House Smoked Salmon, which the New York Times has called “the best smoked salmon in the world”-is located in downtown Santa Barbara. Many major hotels such as the Bellagio and the Wynn, as well as cruise ships and restaurants, order exclusively from the Santa Barbara Smokehouse and the company boasts of accolades from Martha Stewart and Emeril Lagasse, among others.

At this point I tasted the other wine of the evening, The Andis Mouvedre (2010, Amador County).

Fourth Course
For the fourth course, we were served a Pozzi Lamb Chop, with a root vegetable puree and salsa verde. Yes, yes, and yes. This was the only true Paleo course! Pretty sure the puree was a parsnip and turnip duo. The chop was perfectly medium rare. In my opinion, this course did the most justice to the ingredients.

About Pozzi from their website:
Pozzi Ranch is located on the quiet hills overlooking the town of Bodega, in Sonoma County, California. For over 40 years, Joe Pozzi has raised natural, grass-fed lambs and cattle on the pastures of Pozzi Ranch and other grasslands throughout Sonoma and Marin County.

Fifth Course
The fifth course was a mini Pot Pie featuring Diestel Ranch turkey. You may have read about the Diestel Ranch last week right here on cavegrrl.com! 🙂 Unfortunately, my favorite ingredient was covered in pastry! Still, I managed to scrape off most of the crust and enjoy the filling, pretty traditional to a chicken pot pie, and studded with Diestel‘s delicious turkey breast.

About the Diestel Family Turkey Ranch from their website:
In 1949, using the knowledge gained from working on his Uncle Ernest’s ranch, my dad, Jack Diestel, began his own turkey ranch in Sonora. Today our family continues Uncle Ernest’s and Grandpa Jack’s tradition of naturally growing range turkeys on the family ranch using the same secrets to deliver the best tasting turkey directly from us to you.

– The Diestel Family

Sixth Course
The sixth course was a Panorama Grass-fed Beef Short Rib served with Community Grains creamy polenta. OK! So this was my second favorite course and I DID have some of the polenta. It was such a nice treat. The meat was tender and falling off the rib. I could tell it was cooked for a very long time on a low temperature.

Dessert
Dessert was a slice of Chocolate Decadence Cake (made at Whole Foods) served with Temple Coffee. I passed on dessert in favor of another glass of Lava Cap Sauvignon Blanc. 🙂

Andy and I would like to thank Whole Foods for the invitation to the opening and dinner. It was an exciting and memorable evening for all.

Special thanks to Andy for taking some of the food courses. I took a few on my iPhone. I apologize for lighting, as dinner was served outside and it was hard to fight the lack of light once the sun set.

Whole Foods is now open to the public as of today, October 24th. For more information, you can visit their website here.


Cobble Gobble: Eat More Turkey!

One thing that I took away from my tour of The Diestel Family Turkey Ranch last week is that people don’t really eat all that much turkey. As Americans we probably only enjoy it a few times a year. Maybe the problem is that we associate a lot of fear in cooking such a large and expensive piece of meat. Traumatized by an overcooked bird or a fried turkey explosion? Do we brine or do we not brine? Do we cook it breast side down first? What do I do with the carcass?!?! Maybe we overeat so much during the holiday turkey dinners and have so many incarnations of turkey leftovers, that the thought of having a turkey once a week sounds completely unappealing.

But forget about the larger 20-pound creatures for a moment. If you didn’t have to prepare a monstrosity every time, wouldn’t you love to have turkey once a week or even every couple of days? Think about all the possibilities…. not just turkey lunch meats, but turkey burgers, turkey bacon, turkey sausages, and even turkeys that are the size of roasting chickens? What if you didn’t even have to cook the turkey?

After the Diestel tour, Andy purchased a Diestel turkey breast (from their store on the ranch) to have for dinner at some point the following week. He marinated overnight (Greek style) and then grilled it. The next day he brought some over so I could make a version of my latest obsession, a Cobb salad, only this time, it would be a turkey Cobb salad!

I’m not sure why I am so in love the the Cobb right now. It could be because I love everything in one and the only thing non-Paleo in it is the cheese (I don’t use dressing either because to me it’s not needed with so many other toppings).

The Cobb originated in 1937 at the Brown Derby, when the restaurant’s owner Bob Cobb wanted a late night snack. I imagine it was a kind of TV’s Chopped moment when he raided the cooler and the pantry and combined what he could find inside: head of lettuce, an avocado, some romaine, watercress, tomatoes, some cold breast of chicken, a hard-boiled egg, chives, cheese, and of course bacon. Even Cobb knew that bacon makes everything better. 😉 The salad dressing Cobb invented ontained red wine vinegar, lemon juice, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, garlic, olive oil, dry mustard, and salad oil. Soon everyone was asking for The Cobb Salad, and since 1937, more than 4 million salads have been sold at Brown Derby restaurants.

And that’s what I have had for dinner the past three nights! Last night I wanted to see how wonderful the Diestel Turkey would be in a Cobb. And it was everything I hoped. My Cobb salad had organic Earthbound Farms lettuce (herb blend–with dill in it, my favorite!!), heirloom tomatoes from Feeding Crane Farms, avocado, hard boiled Diestel chicken eggs, blue cheese, bacon, and of course the grilled Diestel turkey breast. We also had sauteed onions and mushrooms on the side, which I enjoy with almost anything.

We enjoyed the salad paired with a Domaine Carneros Pinot Noir. By the way, both chardonnays and pinot noir work very well with a Cobb Salad.

So it’s that easy. Just take the chicken out of your favorite recipe and put turkey up to bat! Turkey Cordon Bleu, Turkey and Dumplings, Turkey Chili, Turkey enchiladas… the list goes on. And, if you are gluten free or Paleo, there are tons of chicken recipes on the internet that you can swap in turkey meat instead.

For more recipe ideas or to see the full line of Diestel products, you can click here.