One of the best things about staying at the SpingLeaf Green House in Boulder was mealtime. The emphasis was on eating locally and organically, and August is a super time to enjoy the summer harvest.
Our LG fridge with sleek French doors offered loads of space to store all these yummy foods in energy-efficient style. And BPA-free storage containers were provided by Tupperware, which has recently launched a line of FridgeSmart containers with adjustable vents that let you control airflow to reduce food spoilage and waste. After meals, the water-saving steam-technology LG dishwasher made kitchen cleanup a snap.
The Boulder Green House organizers, Cercone Brown PR certainly found creative ways to promote healthy, earth-wise eating.
Gourmet Pizza Party
One evening, executive chef Kevin Kidd from Salt, a sustainable Boulder restaurant, brought unique pizza ingredients from Boulder’s Farmer’s Market and got us improvising. We chopped heirloom tomatoes, West Slope Colorado peaches, Munson Farm corn and more. (If you’re wondering about the peaches, you should know that Kevin’s peach/prosciutto/goat cheese and cilantro creation was superb! And so was the traditional Pizza Margherita!)
Try this idea if your breakfasts lack creativity: Assemble smoothie ingredients and challenge each person to blend up a unique concoction.
Our group was challenged to use White Wave Foods’ products, including Horizon Organic Yogurt, Silk Soymilk and Almond Milk. Then we added fruits such as berries, peaches, bananas and pineapple; Earthbound Farms’ organic dates; maple syrup; and carrots and kale (very nutritious).
Our discovery was that Earthbound Farms Organic Ginger Snaps were a sweet and gingery asset to the smoothies with kale.
Sadly, neither of my smoothies won the contest, but I had a satisfying delicious breakfast anyway.
Organic, Fair-Trade Coffee Tasting
To accompany our smoothies, our group of journalists got to brew and taste two organic, fair trade coffees while having a virtual meeting with the folks at Green Mountain Coffee via Skype. (What an eco-friendly way to have long-distance meetings without flying people all over the world!)
Sandy and Winston spoke to us from their “coffee lab” in Vermont, filling us in on the importance of paying a fair price to coffee farmers in places such as Ethiopia and Sumatra, where the higher pay can transform communities.
Organic Happy Hour
I was happily introduced to Yellow + Blue organic wine in environmentally-friendly packaging: Tetra Pak. I have to admit, I took one look at the boxes and thought: What’s wrong with glass bottles? They’re recyclable. However, what I hadn’t figured on was the light weight of the Tetra Paks vs. heavy glass bottles. Shipping wine in glass burns far more fossil fuel than in this packaging (which is also recyclable, by the way). And Yellow + Blue carbon offsets their shipping.
I loved the flavors of the organic Malbec and Rosé, but was personally less excited about Y+B’s white wines, though some of the others enjoyed the Sauvignon Blanc.
There’s nothing like eating a wonderful meal on an organic farm, especially one as beautiful as Pastures of Plenty, a 35-acre organic vegetable, herb and cut-flower farm a few miles north of Boulder. Pastures of Plenty is also a venue for parties and weddings, and farmer/chef Lyle Davis runs Big Bang catering there.
We were treated to wonderful recipes from organic farmer Myra Goodman’s The Earthbound Cook: Recipes for Delicious Food and a Healthy Planet.
We savored asalad with jicama, pineapple and avocado and a fennel apple salad. That was followed by Lyle’s special fried egg with green chili at the outdoor table set for royalty. (And we saw the bin of just-picked green chiles!)
Here’s to eating fresh!
—Laurel Kallenbach, freelance writer and editor
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