Wild Oats and Aprons Girl

Wild Oats and Aprons Girl
"Learn How to Use Whole Grains Everyday"


(No Classes Currently Scheduled)

Classes are $25 each,
about two hours long, Arlington, WA area.

To reserve a seat and get directions,

or leave a msg at
425-971-2265 (email is preferred, so that I can send directions and confirmation)

For complete class descriptions, see website:
www.wildoatsandaprons.com, and click on 'Classes'


**Contact me for the possibility of having a class at your site, with your group.


How do you make whole grains as accessible, fast, and craving-good as your favorite restaurant food? Good news; I've got about a million ways. Consider these classes and instruction your own personal Kennedy Space Center, launching you on your own fun journey with whole grains. You will be amazed at how easy and super tasty whole grains can be, and how many ideas will come to you, once you start out. In fact, it would be my best compliment if YOU became better than me, coming up with multiple ideas of your own.

Some have asked me about the glamour girl logo, if I think its a likeness of me.

Good grief, no! She's a "bread babe", and me, at age 45, could be considered more of a 'bread broad'--but don't call me that. That would make me feel all unhappy inside. We both have blond hair and blue eyes, and we both smile a lot, but thats where the likeness ends. (Btw, the wild oats girl, as well as my website, were designed by my incredibly talented niece. Check out her work:http://www.kikiandsquishy.com/chris/info.html

Still, is "bread babe" too cutie-pie for representing whole grain living? I know, right? When you think of whole grains, don't you picture unshaven legs, no make-up, no style? Ha! That was so last decade. You and I are going to make whole grains CHIC! Whole grain dishes will be soon fought over at potlucks, for sure. The Wild Oats and Aprons Bread Babe represents YOU, the customer: smart, chic, happy, super cool.

Yeah! Run with it.

Tanna Mosalsky

Tanna Mosalsky

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Commonly served for breakfast in parts of Southeast Asia, this dish also makes an awesome dessert (sorry; I think I say ‘awesome’ way too much...but this IS awesome!)
Black rice is often called “Forbidden Rice”, which makes it all the more fun to make, serve and eat! So exotic and mysterious! (As always, if you can’t find the fancier rice, good ol’ brown rice is always fine.)

Try out this Black Rice Pudding:
1 c. black rice
1/2 c. sugar
1 15 oz. can unsweetened coconut milk, stirred well
Bring rice and 3 c. water, and 1/4 tsp. salt to a boil in a heavy saucepan, then reduce heat to low and simmer, covered with a tight-fitting lid, 45 minutes (rice will still be wet). Stir in sugar and another 1/4 tsp. salt and 1 1/2 c. coconut milk and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to a low simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until mixture is thick and rice is tender but slightly chewy, about 30 minutes.
Remove from heat and cool to warm, stirring occasionally, at least 30 minutes. Just before serving , stir pudding, serve in bowls, and drizzle remaining coconut milk over pudding.
*Rice pudding takes some time to cook, but it keeps very well, covered and chilled, for 5 days, so you’ve got breakfast for your work week all ready!

If you looking for a way to increase antioxidants in your diet other than blueberries, black rice is an economical, longer shelf life and possibly more healthful alternative, according to scientists reporting to the national meeting of American Chemical Society in Boston recently. In fact, just a spoonful of black rice bran contains more health promoting antioxidants than are found in a spoonful of blueberries! So fight cancer and hearth disease by adding black rice bran to cereals and baked goods to increase your personal illness fighting potential.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Let's take a quick break from rice to feature the Apron of the Week. this is "Flower Fusion" by Aprons by Ann.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Rice is a thoroughly sustaining food. According to Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Duguid in "Seductions of Rice," a beautiful, well researched survey of rice traditions around the world , “Rice has the highest protein digestibility and energy digestibility among all the staple foods.” In most rice-consuming cultures, rice is supplemented with vegetables and legumes, small amounts of meat and fish, and oil.
I don’t share the current national aversion to white rice. True, nutritionists prefer brown rice because the high fiber content slows down the carbohydrate absorption rate. But you can get the same benefit by combining rice with high-fiber vegetables and legumes.
Mr. Alford and Ms. Duguid make another interesting point about the nutritional quality of brown rice:
“It is true that brown rice has more calcium and iron as well as higher protein levels and significantly more of the B vitamins [and] more fiber than white rice. But brown rice is less digestible than white . . . rice. The aleurone layer and embryo, still present in brown rice, contain phytate phosphorus, which seems to interfere with the absorption of calcium, zinc, and iron.”
Bottom line: if you prefer white rice, just make sure you’re also eating lots of vegetables or beans with it.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

My mother, center, and my 6 sisters. (Tragically, I am the one picking my nose. I don't do that anymore, thank you)
Mom read to each of her children, nearly every single night. One of my favorites was this wonderful poem you probably know. Maybe you even memorized it. It is most fitting to include, along with this great new Cantonese chicken soup with rice recipe.

In January it’s so nice, while slipping on the sliding ice,
To sip hot chicken soup with rice.
Slipping once, sipping twice, sipping chicken soup with rice.

In February it will be my snowman’s anniversary,
With cake for him and soup for me!
Happy once, happy twice, happy chicken soup with rice.

In March the wind blows down the door and spill my soup upon the floor.
It laps it up and roars for more.
Blowing once, blowing twice, blowing chicken soup with rice.

In April I will go away, to far-off Spain or old Bombay, And dream about hot soup all day.
Oh my once, oh my twice, oh my chicken soup with rice.

In May I truly think it best to be a robin lightly dressed, Concocting soup inside my nest.
Mix it once, mix it twice, mix that chicken soup with rice.

In June I saw a charming group of roses all begin to droop. I pepped them up with chicken soup!
Sprinkle once, sprinkle twice, sprinkle chicken soup with rice.

In July I’ll take a peep into the cool and fishy deep, Where chicken soup is selling cheap,
Selling once, selling twice, selling chicken soup with rice.

In August it will be so hot, I will become a cooking pot. Cooking soup of course. Why not?
Cooking once, cooking twice, cooking chicken soup with rice.

In September for a while, I will ride a crocodile Down the chicken soupy Nile.
Paddle once, paddle twice, paddle chicken soup with rice

In October I’ll host to witches, goblins, and a ghost. I’ll serve them chicken soup on toast.
Whoopy once, whoopy twice, whoopy chicken soup with rice.

In November’s gusty gale I will flop my flippy tail. And spout hot soup. I’ll be a whale!
Spouting once, spouting twice, spouting chicken soup with rice.

In December I will be a baubled, baubled Christmas tree With soup bowls draped all over me.
Merry once, merry twice, merry chicken soup with rice.

Cantonese chicken and corn soup is one of the most popular soups throughout China, and will fast become your family favorite. Traditionally, only egg whites are used for this soup, but the whole egg can be used.
Chinese Corn and Chicken Soup
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, but in bite size pieces
2/3 c. white rice (or any other rice)
1 15 oz can of cream corn---whirl it in the blender for an even smoother soup
8 c. chicken stock
1 tsp. salt
2 T flour (or try corn flour, cornmeal ground very fine) dissolved in 1/4 c. water
2 eggs (or just the whites), lightly beaten with 2 T water
2 T roasted sesame oil
Place the chicken in a bowl together with 3 T rice vinegar and combine. Set aside.
Combine sweet corn, chicken stock, and salt in pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer, add the chicken and stir; simmer 15 minutes until chicken in cooked through. Add dissolved flour, in a thin stream, stirring continuously, and simmer until thickened slightly. Remove from heat and pour in egg, in a thin stream to create strands, mixing as you pour. Stir in sesame oil. Check the seasoning and serve immediately.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Italian Arborio or Risotto Rice---This is the perfect rice for risottos; the grains are chubby and short, with natural chalky lines or dots. This rice can take up to four times its original volume of liquid! It is best cooked to a plump, just-at-tender state.
This is the most basic and easiest way to make risotto, and once you make this one, it becomes so easy to make it your most versatile dish by adding artichokes, beans, cabbage, zucchini, sweet potatoes, spinach, red peppers, corn, tomato & basil, seafood, meat, and on and on.
Not the most cholesterol friendly, but just the most delicious risotto on the planet.
Risotto with Parmigiano and fresh parsley
1 c. butter
2 1/2 c. risotto rice
1 c. cooking red wine
1 qt chicken stock
1 c. freshly grated Parmigiano cheese, plus more for topping
handful of chopped Italian parsley
sea salt , freshly ground black pepper to taste
extra virgin olive oil
Melt half the butter and a good shot of extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. Stir in the rice and keep stirring until rice is opaque and just beginning to crisp. Add wine and stir briskly. As soon as wine has completely disappeared, stir in 1 c. chicken stock, and stir constantly until that has incorporated fully. Then add another cup of stock, stir, repeat, until all stock is added. Continue to cook and stir until rice is just tender. Stir in the rest of the butter, 1 c. cheese, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Finally add the parsley and complete incorporate.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Over the next few days Let’s run down some of the most popular varieties of rice you’ll find in the grocery store. But remember, there are so many, many more---some of which are known only locally, where they are grown. So start by trying these varieties and continue to branch out, finding all your favorite rices. You’ll have new family menus for months and years to come.
Basmati---long, slim grain, available in brown or white, cooks up in separate fluffy grains with a fantastic aroma. Great for savory dishes, like curries and pilafs, where separate grains are essential! But Basmati is great for Indian sweet dishes, like Kheer, a creamy, sweet rice pudding. This recipe requires some attention, but you can still do other things in the kitchen while you watch this dish cook.
1/4 c. Basmati rice
1 T. butter (or Ghee---clarified butter, used in many Indian dishes; has a higher smoking point and toasted flavor)
4 c. milk (or soy or rice or almond milk)
sugar to taste, from 3 T to 1/2 c.
pinch of saffron
1/4 tsp cardamom powder
1/4 c. chopped nuts (almonds, pistachios, etc.)
1/4 c. raisons
In a saucepan, heat ghee or butter. Add chopped nuts and raisins. Set aside when raisins get plump and nuts turn reddish brown. In same pan, toast the rice for 3 min. on low heat. Add milk; increase heat to med-high and let it come to a boil, stirring occasionally, being careful not to burn milk. Add sugar and stir; reduce heat to med and cook until milk is reduced in half. Stir often! It is done when milk has been reduced to half and rice is soft, but not mushy, about 25 min. Add the saffron, cardamom, some of the nuts, and raisins, reserving some for garnish. Serve hot or cold. Pudding thickens with time; add a little warm milk to thin.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Asparagus & Bacon Wild Rice

2 cups wild rice, cooked
6 slices bacon
1 bunch asparagus ends trimmed, blanched, and cut 1 inch diagonal
¼ cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to season

Cut bacon into one inch pieces, sauté on medium heat until crisp and brown, then set aside on paper to remove grease. Blanch asparagus in boiling water for one minute. Cut into one inch lengths on the diagonal. In a large bowl, mix together wild rice, asparagus, olive oil, half of the bacon, and toss. Top with remaining bacon, season with salt and pepper and serve.

Lucky me! Out of the blue, Wild Nicole, from Goose Valley Wild Rice, sent me a few packages of their 100%, Grade A, certified organic wild rice. I bet a lot of people aren’t even aware that wild rice can be grown in America, let alone high in the Cascade Mountains of Northern California. Literally in the shadow of Mt. Shasta, rice seeds are sprouted in the pure mountain water from spring snow melt, and then planted in Goose Valley’s red volcanic soil that gives Goose Valley Wild Rice its great nutty flavor. The flavor is intense! Maybe my heart is always in the mountains or anything from the mountains, but I love this rice! The rich black wild rice cooked up the plumpest I’ve ever had. There are 5 different varieties, and if you order $25 worth, shipping is free. Check out their website: http://www.goosevalley.com/index.htm

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Cook some rice up tonight and see for your self how great it tastes. There are sooooo many kinds of rice to try; have some fun and a little adventure. And I'll keep sending ideas your way. Enjoy your life. Enjoy RICE!

I really, really love grains. It is my comfort food. This month, September 2010, I’ll post all my favorite things, ideas, and recipes about RICE. Its a great feeling when you take a savoring fork-ful of rich, black wild rice or brown rice, where each kernel kind of goes “thwrong” when you bite it, as you pop through the outer layer to the burst of fluffy inside!

Sometimes I like rice racy-spicy---like flavored hot Thai or Mexican, somethings I prefer tangy, like rice mixed with cilantro, green onion, corn, and Tex-Mex dressing, or Italiano, with lots of perfectly sauteed baby vegetables.

But mostly I like rice just cooked in good broth, served with a little butter, maybe some fresh parsley. That and just toast are ultimate comfort foods for me. Simple. Yet I feel like the richest person in the world when I enjoy something so basic yet so amazing, especially when you consider how each grain came to be and traveled to be in to one’s possession. There would certainly be a lot less waste in the world if we all could just pause and appreciate every little thing we have, even a kernel of grain.

You really come to appreciate something more when you realize how much has to come together to bring you what you take for granted.

Whole grains seem like such a simple commodity and yet the overall process is a great orchestrated production, which includes Heavens’ cooperation.

My niece just returned from an 18 month mission to Thailand. She ate lots and lots of rice, especially for breakfast, and totally fell in love with it--even after finding gnats in it! One of her many wonderful experiences was ‘getting’ to harvesting rice---an incredibly labor intensive process.

First, the rice stalks have to be cut, and at just the right time, too. If the plants are too old, they are droopy and much harder to cut. According to my niece, it was ‘a million degrees’, but all the harvesters were made to wear coats and hats so they wouldn’t get burned or cut by the rather rough stalks. Or killed by the others swinging sickles, maybe.

The next step is to separate the rice from the rest of the stalk, the most strenuous work she’s ever done (and she’s done a lot of hard things, like 50 mile backpacking in 135 degree heat...a story for another day). She took bundles of rice stalks and whacked them feverishly against a wooden grate, to make the rice fall out. For each stalk, she had to hit it 7 or more times. After several hours, in "million degree heat", so hot, so tired, there was only a small pile of rice!

My niece observed, “Wow. So much work for so little rice. And I think about how much rice this country eats; I love rice and eat it twice a day, everyday. I will never ever throw away a single piece of rice ever again.”