Cooking, Vintage chicks lol

Which Came First? The Chicken, the Egg or the Salad?

I’ve been trying to stick to a plant-based diet. I’m not a nut about it. I don’t go all psycho if I get asked if I want chicken on my salad. (I am the first to admit, chicken on a salad is pretty tasty.) I’m not a big meat eater, so it’s not a hardship to give it up. However — I gotta have my eggs. Cholesterol be damned. Here’s a photo of my fave salad. Everything but the kitchen sink. Oh yes, avocado. Always avocado.

My usual salad, sans eggs

The finished salad, topped with a fried egg, or two

I know what you’re thinking — fried eggs on a salad?! What the …

But trust me, it’s delicious. The yolk kind of melds with the dressing and, oooh, yummy.

I picked up this culinary practice after I attended a Woman’s Press Club of Indiana meeting two years ago at Traders Point Creamery in Zionville, just north of Indianapolis.

Traders Point Creamery is a 150-acre organic artisan creamery and restaurant with a working farm and restored barns. It offers a unique farm-to-table dining experience, inside or outside amid the beautiful gardens and countryside. The Loft Restaurant is located in an 1860s barn with hand-hewn beams and hand-carved wooden pegs. The Farm Store sells Traders Point organic cheeses and 100% grass-fed milks and yogurts. Two 1870s barns house the milking parlors, where the cows are milked twice a day.

It’s not just a place to eat, it’s a wonderful family excursion and experience.

Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, at our press luncheon, Julie — a friend and fellow club member — and I ordered salads. Julie was sipping her home-brewed ice tea and I was savoring my coffee with fresh, organic cream when our salads arrived — each topped with a fried egg. We looked at each other and raised our eyebrows.

“What the …?”

But we both dived it and later agreed it was a delicious addition. For dessert, everyone ordered the homemade, hand-scooped ice cream, which you can also get at the outdoor Dairy Bar if you’re eating outside. (The indoor Dairy Bar is closed due to COVID-19.)

According to its website and Facebook page, Tradespoint Creamery is open, but indoor and outdoor dining is operating at 50% capacity.

I hope to make the 2-hour trip again in the near future to share the farm restaurant experience with my grandchildren and show them how to order their salads sunny-side up.

Traders Point Creamery

Cooking

Sugar-Free, Gluten-Free Needn’t Be Taste-Free

In addition to toilet paper, there’s a shortage of yeast —  apparently because there are a lot of people baking bread during this pandemic — what the … ?

It’s going to take something much more catastrophic than a deadly virus to terrorize me into baking a loaf of bread. The last time I baked bread was in fifth grade for my 4-H Fair Cooking Project. That’s some labor-intensive stuff right there, even if I did get a blue ribbon. Besides, I’m only 45 minutes from the Amish, and they sell freshly baked bread on the roadside. On the roadside! Cause that’s how they roll (pun intended).

If I’m cooking, it’s got to be simple, maybe five ingredients or less. I don’t eat a lot of carbs or meat or gluten or sugar. We won’t get into the weirdness of that right now. That’s a whole other blog.

The Significant Other eats it all: cows, carbs, pigs, sugar, gluten. Lots of gluten. Sometimes he tries one of my meals or snacks. Sometimes he likes it, and sometimes, not. As it should be. What I’m saying is you may not want a low-carb treat with no sugar or flour. That’s fine — this is ‘Merica. At least it was last time I checked the headlines.

I love peanut butter and can eat it with a spoon right out of the jar. Sometimes I don’t use a spoon. Here’s my fave 4-ingredient recipe for peanut butter cookies. As far as low carb, gluten-free, sugar-free and salt-free go (and can we just say white-killer-free?) this is a pretty tasty cookie. Proof: I have to hide them from the Gluten, Sugar Carnivore Eater.

PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES 

  • 1 cup natural peanut butter (I use Simple Truth no-stir, organic crunchy peanut butter from Kroger)
  • 1/2 cup Stevia or Swerve sugar (I have used both and kind of prefer the Swerve)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350°. Mix all ingredients until well combined. Using small spoon, scoop enough dough to roll into a 1″ ball in your hands. (Wait! Go back — wash your hands first!) 

Place balls on parchment-lined baking sheet. Press lightly on each one with a fork, creating a criss-cross. (I add a few chopped peanuts on top and lightly press them into the dough.)

Bake for 12 minutes and allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

Bon appétit.