Welcome to another edition of the Real Food Kitchen Tour. This week we're featuring my new kitchen here in Las Vegas.
What's a Real Foodie?
A “real foodie” is someone who cooks “traditional” food. We cook stuff from scratch using real ingredients, like raw milk, grass-fed beef, eggs from chickens that run around outdoors, whole grains, sourdough and yogurt starters, mineral-rich sea salt, and natural sweeteners like honey and real maple syrup.
We don't use modern foods that are either fake, super-refined, or denatured. This includes modern vegetable oils like Crisco and margarine, soy milk, meat from factory farms, pasteurized milk from cows eating corn and soybeans, refined white flour, factory-made sweeteners like HFCS or even refined white sugar, or commercial yeast.
We believe in eating wholesome, nutrient-dense foods that come from nature. So we shop at farmer's markets or buy direct from the farmer, or we grow food in our own backyards.
This Week's Real Food Kitchen Tour: CHEESESLAVE
This week I'm featuring my own kitchen. We just moved to Las Vegas three weeks ago. This is just temporary. We're renting a condo here while we look for a home.
I wanted to show you how we are living temporarily. It was interesting the things I could not live without, like my copy of Nourishing Traditions and my 5-gallon bucket of coconut oil.
Blog Name: CHEESESLAVE
Blog Author: Ann Marie Michaels
How Long Blogging: I've been blogging on CHEESESLAVE for 4 years, although I've been blogging for 6 years. I also have a social media blog — Social Media Strategy Blog — but ever since we started making plans to move, I haven't had time to update it. I'll get back to it in the new year. I also run the Real Food Media blog network.
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
House or Apartment: Condo on the 4th floor
Size of Kitchen: About 10 x 10 (just a guess)
Things You Love About Your Kitchen: I love the open layout. I also love the high ceilings, the two huge pantries and the laundry room which is adjacent.
Things You Would Change: I'd rip out the microwave and put in a Blue Star range, oven and hood. My friend Janis got a Blue Star and it is awesome! I'd also get a better fridge and dishwasher (I want Fisher Paykel). This is just a rental, though, so I'll wait until we get our house to upgrade appliances.
Favorite Tools & Gadgets: Cast iron pans, Wolfgang Puck stainless steel saucepans, Le Creuset Dutch ovens, Excalibur dehydator, Hamilton Beach crockpots (I have 3), wooden spoons, mason jars, Pyrex glass measuring cups, and my Escali digital scale. Oh, and let's not forget my Canon Rebel SLR camera — I'm always taking pictures!
Biggest Challenges Cooking Real Food: There is nowhere to put a chest freezer in this condo and I can't live with the limited space in this tiny freezer. I'm going to buy a smaller chest freezer and put it where the mini fridge is so I can buy at least a quarter side of grass-fed beef.
Current Family Favorite Meal: Mariscada, a Portuguese shellfish stew made with chicken or fish stock, pureed tomato, and scallops, shrimp, mussels, clams, crab, and lobster. My daughter doesn't like other kinds of seafood but she will happily eat shellfish. Our family loves this so much, I'm now making it once a week. I'll post the recipe on the blog soon.
Favorite Cookbooks: Two of my favorites are Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon Morell and Mary Enig, and Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Vol. 1 by Julia Child. There are many more — too many to list here.
Here are some photos of my kitchen:
These things liver permanently next to the stove, along with some leftover bacon grease and some coconut oil/ghee blend from Green Pasture Products (not pictured).
You can see that the dining room, which is right next to the kitchen, leads right to the living room area. I love the tall ceilings and big windows — there's lots of sunlight.
Top shelf from left to right: Raw milk from Organic Pastures in California, soaked granola, herbal iced tea, Dr. Ayala's Herbal Water, Zukay's carrot kvass, Strauss full-fat yogurt, maple syrup, a sippy cup of raw milk for Kate, a mug of leftover mariscada (shellfish stew), Virgil's stevia root beer, coconut water, pineapple, Strauss cream.
Middle shelf from left to right: Leftover beans and rice, homemade red wine vinegar with the mother, a bowl of beef tallow, some storebought yogurt (I can't make everything from scratch these days — too busy and I don't have all my stuff!)
Bottom shelf from left to right: Carrots, watermelon, tomato sauce, free-range eggs (don't have a source yet for pastured eggs).
Since we quit drinking, my husband has become totally addicted to kombucha. He drinks 4-5 bottles a day. I can't keep up with him when I try to make it myself so I buy these at the health food store.
Top shelf from left to right: Kefir grains, homemade red sauerkraut, orange marmalade, blackberry jam sweetened with honey.
Bottom shelf from left to right: Organic ketchup, my mom's prize-winning tomato relish, more homemade sauerkraut.
Since I've been reading about all the benefits of bone broth (helps prevent/reverse cellulite and wrinkles) and since Seth is on the GAPS Diet, I like to always have broth in the fridge. I used to store it in the freezer but I don't have the room anymore.
Now I just reduce it until it is very concentrated (this started out as like 6 or 8 cups) and I add some gelatin so it's just like jello. This way it keeps a lot longer in the fridge. Then I can just take a little bit out and put it in a saucepan while I'm making dinner. I just reduce it a little more and I have instant gravy!
The freezer is PACKED. I desperately need a small chest freezer! You can see bison heart, raw milk, bison kidney, pastured pork breakfast sausage, sprouted spelt flour, sprouted oats, homemade chocolate ice cream made with sour cream and honey, and sprouted brown rice.
Unsoaked nuts and seeds are on the left; soaked are on the right.
I use the peppermint oil when I'm mopping the floor. Kate says, “It smells like candy canes!” (I have a Norwex microfiber mop; you only need water to clean — I love it!)
I also take my fermented cod liver oil/butter oil blend every day (taking about 2 TBS per day) and use the spray-on magnesium oil.
I actually love mopping the floor now!
We don't have a water filter like we do in our house in LA. For now, I'm just buying these at the health food store. I add Concentrace minerals. I did get chlorine filters installed in both showers. In Vegas, it's very dry and I can't stand any chlorine on my skin — it's so drying! (Sadly, our condo pool uses chlorine. When we buy a house, I'll be doing a saltwater pool.)
The bottles are sitting on a small fridge. This was left here by the landlord. I am going to put it a closet and put a small chest freezer there instead.
They don't make these anymore unfortunately. This is the only kind of cod liver oil Kate will take. I was giving her 2 per day but just had her vitamin D tested and she came out low — 30. So now I'm giving her 5 a day, plus I rub 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon cod liver oil/butter oil blend on her bottom. We'll test her again in 6 months.
I always buy the 5-gallon bucket of expeller-pressed coconut oil from Wilderness Family Naturals and I buy my olive oil from Chaffin Family Orchards. When we moved to Vegas, my husband said, “Do we really need to bring that giant bucket of coconut oil?” I said, “You are kidding, right?”
I always have canned fish in the cupboard. My husband eats a lot of it and I eat it occasionally. I got the cod liver in Europe. Haven't tried it yet but I've been told it tastes just like tunafish.
Multivitamin, mineral multi, 5-HTP (although I usually take Tryptophan — this and melatonin are the only amino acids I'm still taking), ionic magnesium, and an herbal adrenal supplement. There's a lot more not pictured.
I brought 2 of these coolers with us from California. I fill them up with raw milk and other stuff that's hard to find here whenever we go back to LA, although I've recently found a local source for raw milk. I use the cooler to bring groceries up from the garage — easier than lugging up bags.
I got this at the Filipino market right by our house. A fast and easy dinner and it was delicious! You eat the bones and heads and all (I did not eat the tails). Kate wouldn't eat it but Seth and I both loved it. I'll be back for more.
I don't normally let her eat store-bought empanadas, or even store-bought yogurt for that matter. But I'm not making my own yogurt right now as I've got too much going on. The empanada came from the local Filipino market and it was a special treat.
The only cookbook I brought with me to Vegas! Not that I don't love the others, but they are all packed away in storage. This is the one I am constantly referring to and simply cannot live without.
Check Out the Previous Real Food Kitchen Tour Posts
Real Food Kitchen Tour: CHEESESLAVE
Real Food Kitchen Tour: GAPS Diet Kitchen
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Holistic Mom
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Radically Natural Living
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Amanda Brown
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Pamela Montazeri
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Cracking an Egg with One Hand
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Yolks, Kefir & Gristle
Real Food Kitchen Tour: The Okparaeke Family
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Holistic Kid
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Artistta
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Nourished & Nurtured
Real Food Kitchen Tour: May All Seasons Be Sweet to Thee
Real Food Kitchen Tour: The Horting Family
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Hybrid Rasta Mama
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Granola Mom 4 God
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Real Food Devotee
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Real Food Forager
Real Food Kitchen Tour: The Leftover Queen
Real Food Kitchen Tour: Health Home & Happiness
Let Us Tour Your Kitchen
Are you a real foodie? Do you have a kitchen that you'd like to see featured on CHEESESLAVE?
Please email me at annmarie AT realfoodmedia dot com. Either send me a link to a Flickr set or email me your photos (minimum of 5, but more is better). Note: Please send me LARGE photos. Minimum 610 width. If they're too small, I can't use them.
Oh, and please send the answers to the above questions (at the very top of this post).
As much as I'd love to include all the photos I receive, I can't guarantee that I will use your photos in the series. I'm looking for creative, good quality photos.
Some ideas for photos:
- Show us what's in your fridge or what's fermenting on your counter
- Take some snaps of some of your favorite kitchen gadgets, or show us how you organize your spices
- Got backyard chickens? Send some pics!
- How about a lovely herb garden?
- Kids or pets are always cute!
- Try to include at least one photo of yourself, ideally in your kitchen
And no, you don't have to have a blog to be included in the tour.