Purple Haze Lavender Farm

This is our second Harvest Host experience and believe me another amazing adventure. The hosts and helpers are all so friendly making you feel right at home. Upon our arrival fall was certainly in the air

When you visit the Sequim lavender farm at Purple Haze, you are invited to wander the fields, enjoy the beauty of this sweet smelling herb, pick your own bouquet of flowers and picnic on the lawns. This of course depending on the season. We arrived in late September so the store at the farm was closed, yet we were welcome to wander around and even stay with our RV for the night. As members of Harvest Hosts this was a very nice option. I  need to mention that Purple Haze has a gift and ice cream shop in downtown Sequim. The shop is adorable and the lavender ice cream is amazing, well worth the drive into town. At this time the lavender farm is closed so head downtown Sequim to their unique and aromatic store and dont forget the ice cream, it is amazing.

 A Little History
Lavender is a plant rich in history and myth. With its roots in the ancient herbalists, lavender’s properties as a disinfectant and antiseptic grew through the centuries, even gaining the reputation of warding off the plague. Lavender’s popularity with the English royalty gave it a berth in the ranks of a cosmetic herb, and it was with Queen Victoria that lavender was recognized as a tonic for nerves.

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Until Our Next Adventure From Just Around The Bend

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RV Meat Loaf Pressure Cooker Style

On the road we need healthy, fast and delicious. Our pressure cooker is one of our most used and important tools in our cozy travel trailer kitchen. At home  in Bend we also make this dish and it cooks in 12 to 15 minutes, depending on your altitude. We still work, so coming home and being able to cook meatloaf and  potatoes in 12 minutes is such a help, add a veggie or salad and you have a quick complete meal..

Meatloaf in a pressure cooker? I was as surprised as you probably are, but it turns out to be a quick-and-easy success. “Amazing,” said my husband Jeff, “It doesn’t look or taste steamed.” But steamed it is, in the cooker’s vegetable basket. You can also use a standard collapsible steaming basket instead. It’s essential to cook the meatloaf in a container that has a perforated bottom.

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon  olive oil
  • 1 large zucchini, finely diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, smashed to a paste with coarse salt
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves, plus more for garnish
  •  1 pound  ground lean chicken or turkey
  • 1/2 Cup Whole Wheat Panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated  Parmesan
  • Combine Separately
  • 1 cup ketchup, divided
  • 1/4 cup  balsamic vinegar (use 1/2 Cup in the meatloaf mixture and the remaining amount to top the meatloaf) It’s yummy

Heat the oil in a large saute pan over high heat. Add the onion and cook until golden brown, add the carrots, zucchini, peppers, celery, garlic paste, 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper, to taste, and cook until almost soft, 5 minutes or so. Set aside to cool.

Whisk together the eggs and herbs in a large bowl. Add the meat, bread crumbs, cheese, 1/2 cup of the ketchup/ balsamic mixture and the cooled vegetables,  mix until just combined.

NOTE: At this point you can bake the meatloaf the traditional way in the oven, directions below, or follow me to the quick RV pressure cooker way, either choice this is a delicious and super healthy meatloaf

Traditional Method:.  

Mold the meatloaf on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Brush the remaining ketsup /balsamic mixture over the entire loaf. Bake the meatloaf for 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

Pressure Cooker Method:

Coat the bottom and sides of the steaming basket lightly with the cooking spray.  Transfer the meatloaf to the steaming basket and press into a disc of uniform thickness. (If your steaming basket has a central lifting pole, either remove it or shape the loaf around it.) Spread the remaining catsup/balsamic mixture over the top of the meatloaf. Pour 2 cups water into your 6-quart pressure cooker, set the prepared steamer basket on top of the water. Place pressure cooker on your stove’s burner , bring the pot to high pressure (15 psi). Once this pressure has been reached, reduce the heat as much as possible while maintaining this pressure. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes. Set the pot off the heat and let the pressure fall to normal naturally, about 12 minutes. Unlock and open the pot. Carefully lift the steamer basket out and voila, you have a healthy, moist and delicious dinner.

 

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Meatloaf ready to place on top of potatoes

I also place another steamer basket under the meatloaf basket and layer peeled potatoes, the potatoes cook perfectly  all cooked at the same time.

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Potatoes prepared to mash

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Steamer Basket

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So please give it a try and if you RV like we do, saving time in the kitchen is essential, as we would rather hike and bike, than spend many hours cooking. The pressure cooker allows us to be able to cook, fast and healthy and that’s what’s so  important to JUST AROUND THE BEND ♥

Joshua’s Cream Of Celery Soup

Serves 6– 8

The story behind this soup is that my son (Joshua) and I exchange recipes. He has become quite a healthy and gourmet cook , which always makes a mother proud. He mostly shoots from the hip, meaning he reads recipes, then totally changes them to his liking, creating recipes to a whole level of goodness and healthiness. Make this comforting soup when you want to lose some serious pounds and when you can find fresh celery with heads full of leafy tops at your local market. Put some of those tops in the soup and use the rest to flavor broths, sauces, and stews, and to toss in your salads. With only a few ingredients and very quick to make, this is a perfect RV meal. It makes quite a lot depending on your size of celery you start with, but freezes well.

1 Teaspoon olive oil

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1 Large yellow onion diced

1 pound of  carrots peeled and cut into rounds

1 small russet potato, peeled and diced

1 Large bunch celery, including some of the tops and leaves, chopped, plus a handful of leaves for garnish

1 Heaping Tablespoon Better Than Bouillon (or homemade stock)

1 Teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 cups water, plus more as needed  ( enough  to cover the veg’s by about an inch)

1/3 Cup  minced fresh flat-leaf parsley

1/2 Cup half and half   (optional)

2 Cups diced roasted chicken  (optional)

GARNISH

¼ cup (1 oz/ 30 g) shredded pecorino romano cheese

INSTRUCTIONS

In a Dutch oven or soup pot,  over medium heat add the  olive oil . When the olive is sizzling add the onion, cook until slightly browned and caramelized. Reduce the heat to medium-low and stir in the  celery, carrot, and potato. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the carrot is bright orange, about 15 minutes. Add approximately 2 cups of water, or enough  to cover vegetables by at least an inch .Season with 1 heaping Tablespoon of Better Than Bouillon (or 2 cups of homemade stock) and a few grindings of pepper. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 1 hour.Re move from the heat. Using an immersion blender, or a vitamix , purée the soup until smooth. I prefer the vitamix as it really gets the soup silky smooth. Purée in batches, and return the pureed soup to the pot.  At this point you can add the half and half and chicken pieces (totally optional) . Add more broth as needed to achieve your desired consistency. Its that simple now you are ready to serve – remove from the heat and cover to keep warm.

NOTE: This soup is also just as good leaving chunky and not pureeing at all,  super good option also.

Ladle the soup into bowls. Top with shredded pecorino romano cheese

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Jeff’s Favorite no bake 21 Day Fix Cookies

Valentines is upon us and keeping with our healthy regime, I have decided to make one of  Jeff’s favorite cookies and surprise him for Valentines. The last few times we have stayed with my sister in law (Vicki) she has made these cookies for us and believe me it’s hard to limit yourself, they are just that good and a breeze to make. Happy Valentines to all of my friends, family and all who follow my blogging journey. ♥♥♥

Ingredients

1 Cup Organic Almond Butter or Organic peanut butter (or better yet 1/2 cup of each)

3/4 Cup Organic Honey

1/2 Cup Olive Oil or coconut oilp1000970

2 teaspoon vanilla

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/3 Cup Chopped nuts (any kind you prefer)

2 1/4 Cups Old Fashioned Oatmeal (not instant)

6 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder (unsweetened)

1/3 Cup unsweetened coconut

Place first three ingredients into a medium saucepan and slowly heat up over low heat, stirring to blend. Remove from heat and add the remaining ingredients into the saucepan and blend. I use a small cookie scoop or a soup spoon and scoop onto parchment paper that has been placed on a cookie sheet.. Spacing each cookie a little apart. At this point be sure to hide from family, these are very addicting. Place in your freezer and freeze for an hour, now they are ready to eat. After the cookies are frozen I put them in the freezer in snack size baggies to keep me and my cookie loving husband from eating them all.

Makes 24 or more depending on the size of balls you scoop. Lately I have been using my littlest scoop and getting 36 cookies.

Note: I also like to add toasted coconut, little mini chocolate chips, etc the possibilities are endless.

The original recipe is from No Bake-21 Day fix Cookies. I have changed it up a bit and added items we feel make it healthier and more organic, which is very important to us..

CHEERS UNTIL NEXT WEEK THE FEATURED RECIPE IS JOSH’S CREAM OF CELERY SOUP-YUM

Yes, these photos are mine. Good, bad, and let’s be honest, some aren’t even worth stealing. But they’re still mine. My photos may be used on Pinterest or Facebook with a link back to my page. All other uses of my photos are strictly prohibited.
Thank you for visiting and please feel free to leave comments or email me at http://www.justaroundthebendoregon@gmail.comliz-logo-1

RV Style Che Guevara

I dont know about you, but when we pull away from the house and finally get on the road, I like to have as many meals made ahead as possible.  Meals that freeze well and reheat wonderfully. In addition they must be healthy. This RV friendly recipe ticks all of the boxes, plus it makes a great breakfast, lunch or dinner. Che Guevara also makes a quick burrito, taco or a even healthier rice bowl. Often times when we want to go hiking and not spend a lot of time on a  big breakfast, I reheat the Che Guevara in tin foil, place in the oven to reheat and serve a perfectly cooked egg on top- Yum, it’s truly super food. With these simple ingredients you are on your way to hike, bike, fish, or relax around the campfire.  ♥

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Roasting Pan I Use

4 Cups sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks

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Love this roasted corn

1 large onion, diced  (approx. 2 cups)

1 plantain, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks (optional)

1 1/2 Cups of brown rice (I use leftover brown rice or Seeds of Change Quinoa & Brown Rice already cooked) Best buy is at Costco 

1/2 cups cilantro chopped and divided

1 15 ounce can of organic black beans ( drained and rinsed)

1 1/2 Cups of corn I prefer Trader Joe’s frozen Blackened corn

1 to 1 1/2 Cups of cooked broccoli, cut into tiny pieces eliminating the stems (drained and dried well)

1 Tablespoons olive oil (divided)

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This is a great option

1/2 Cup of your favorite barbeque sauce

1 teaspoon vindaloo (savory spice) or chili powder

salt and pepper (to taste)

Beware this makes a large batch, approximately 6 cups

What’s nice about this recipe is it can all be made in one pan.
Preheat the oven to 400°
Peel the chunked sweet potatoes, adding them into a large roasting pan. Drizzle with half of the olive oil and sprinkle with Vindaloo or chili powder.  Season with salt and pepper. Mix well.

Spread potatoes  out evenly into one layer – this is important, as you want them to roast, not steam as they will if you have them all on top of each other. Roast for 10 minutes, stirring halfway through. Roast an additional 5 minutes, adding the plantains and onion, continuing roasting until all potatoes and vegetables are  golden and crisp, an additional 5 to 10 minutes. Test to make sure the sweet potatoes have softened yet crispy on the outside.  When the roasting is complete, remove from the oven and add all of the remaining ingredients. Stirring gently to mix. Serve with Liz’s Greek Yogurt Topping and sprinkle with the remaining chopped cilantro.

Liz’s Greek Yogurt Topping
1 cup nonfat greek  yogurt , 1 Tablespoon diced fresh cilantro and 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice, mix all together and use as a topping.

Che Guevara makes a great burrito , taco or bowl, the possibilities are endless. Also liz-logo-1wonderful with corn or flour tortillas, chips and a nice cold beer..

 

 

 
Next week I am featuring Joshua’s Celery Soup
Disclaimer: The first time I experienced Che Guevara was at a wonderful restaurant in Portland, Oregon named Laughing Planet. Then lucky Bend, Oregon they opened up a Laughing Planet. I was in heaven. My neighbor Jen and I decided we could go home and duplicate this recipe and we believe the above recipe is pretty darn close.  Try  the recipe out and see what you think, its worth it. If you are ever lucky enough to find a laughing plant near you, all of their creations are wonderful .

Palate A Coffee Bar-Bend Oregon

Upon  entering Palate you just feel at home, with help full friendly baristas and a warm fire glowing in the fireplace. Not to mention their amazing coffee in which they use Stumptown Roasted Beans. Ok I am a coffee snob, along with most of our family and to us it really makes a difference. They also have on hand almond, coconut, soy and hemp milks, also important for people with dietary concerns. So put this all together and you have the most delicious and satisfying cup of coffee, made personally for you.

LOCATIONimg_9752
643 NW Colorado Ave
just south of downtown in Bend, Oregon

BEHIND THE BREW
Jason and  Jodi Groteboer of Palate

The comfortable feeling you get as you enter is from the renovating the owners did to this unique 100-year-old building, using pallet boards on the walls and tables, a play on words presented itself. The  coffee bar, Palate, opened in March of 2013.

The most popular drinks Palate serves are americanos and macchiatos, a shot of espresso with a little foamy milk added. Other items offered include teas and “foamy lattes” — Jodi’s term for large cappuccinos — plus a variety of coffee and espresso drinks, local kombucha, beer, baked goods and a daily soup.

“We know coffee,” Jodi Groteboer said. “We try to just focus on that.”

So if you are visiting Bend, Oregon, or lucky enough to live in this paradise like we do, it’s a must stop and well worth your time. As Jeff and I travel the country, we certainly love to find gems like Palate.

Until our next adventure FROM JUST AROUND THE BEND

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Bringing you your daily dose of travel and adventure and sometimes some good stuff to eat!!!

Next week back to healthy eating featuring Che Guevara RV Style