Fire Cider Recipes

It's A Medicinal Tonic. It's A Cocktail Mixer. It's Both…and More!

Archive for the tag “vegetarian”

New Fire Cider T-Shirts for November Events

On the back it says 'Beware The Underdose!'

On the back it says ‘Beware The Underdose!’

 
Yep, we’ve got fun new t-shirts: 100% organic cotton with mineral based inks, available at all our events this month!  Come see us for free Fire Cider and more:
  • Saturday and Sunday November 15th 9am-7pm and 16th 10am-5pm:Marlboro Natural Living Expo/Market 181 Boston Post Road W, Marlboro MA
  • Saturday November 22, 11am-6pm, Bust Carftacular Boston, Cyclorama at the Boston Center for the Arts
    539 Tremont Street
    Boston, MA 02116
  • Saturday November 22, 10am-2pm Winter Farmer’s Market at Pettengill Farm, 45 Ferry Road, Salisbury MA
  • Sunday Nov 23, Cambridge Naturals in store free Fire Cider Tasting from 11-2 pm located at 23 White Street, Cambridge MA 02140
  • Saturday and Sunday November 29th and 30th from 11-5 pm The Hingham Shipyard Merry Marketplace at the Hingham Shipyard, MA
  • Need something special?  Email Sean@FireCider.com and he’ll be sure to bring your order to the event for you.
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Wicked Simple Sauerruben Recipe

Lacto-fermented veggies are very easy to make, full of good for you probiotics and are a nice balance to the rich, warm foods we have begun eating for the fall and winter.  Sauerruben is made just like sauerkraut, only instead of shredded cabbage you’ll be thinly slicing baby turnips. This method is a very easy way to preserve the end of harvest bounty by making it even more nutritious and flavorful.  The sauerruben will last for months in the fridge, if you don’t eat it all in the first few weeks!

Ingredients:

-Salt, 2 tsp per pound of veggies.

-Turnips, sliced or shredded. After much experimenting, I prefer sliced when using smaller, tender turnips. The turnips in this picture are delicious sweet, tender Hakurei turnips from our friends at Woven Roots Farm in Lee, MA.

Options per Quart mason jar-
1-2 clove garlic

and/or 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

and/or 1/2 tsp caraway seeds

Or get cray-zay and spice it up with everything!

 

Clean bottles filled with water make great weights to keep the veggies under their brine.

Clean bottles filled with water make great weights to keep the veggies under their brine.

Method:

-Weigh your sliced turnips and measure out 2 teaspoons of salt for each 1 pound of turnips.

-Add sliced turnips into jar, sprinkling salt as you go. The salt draws the water out of the turnips creating the brine it will ferment in. Weight top, mashing the veggies a bit to compact them and encourage the brine to form.  We used empty, cleaned beer bottles filled with water to weight the turnips and keep them under the brine.

-Keep the veggies submerged under the brine or risk nasty things happening. Add a little water if you don’t get enough liquid from the veggies.

-Store them at room temp somewhere where possible overflowing brine won’t cause problems, like a counter top with a pan under the jars to catch spills.

-Wait a few days, admiring the lovely bubbling. Taste every now and then.

-Put in the fridge to stop further souring, or keep them out for maximum sour awesomeness.

Fire Cider At Expo East and The Big E

September is our busiest month of the year and this year was no exception.  We spent 8 days at the Big E in Springfield MA and during that time we gave out over 25 gallons in samples alone, holy wow, that’s a new record! Twenty five gallons translates to about 17,500 Fire Cider samples – in home compostable sample cups of course!  We are so thankful to everyone who came out and gave our strange tonic a try.

Sheri and Dan taking their daily shots of Fire Cider at the Big E.

Sheri and Dan taking their daily shots of Fire Cider at the Big E.

While the Big E was going on, four of us went to Baltimore Maryland for Natural Products Expo East, second only to Expo West which we will be attending in March.   We were lucky to have Daniel Esko, formerly of the Berkshire Coop Market join Team Fire Cider on September 2nd.   Daniel, Brain, Dana and I drove 6 hours to Baltimore, in two cars packed to the gills with Fire Cider for the Expo.

Arriving at Expo East in the Baltimore Convention Center.

Arriving at Expo East in the Baltimore Convention Center.

We had an awesome time at the Expo- we met a whole bunch of our retail partners, whom we have known for years via email and phone.  It was so nice to finally meet them in person!  We also connected with a lot of people who were excited to try Fire Cider for the first time as well as some super fans who went home with free bottles, t-shirts and shot glasses.

Having fun at the Expo! Daniel, Brian and Dana with the backdrop I made.

Having fun at the Expo! Daniel, Brian and Dana with the backdrop I made.

Fire Cider was nomininated for the NEXT award given out by New Hope Media who runs Expo East and Expo West, what an honor!

Fire Cider was nominated for the NEXT award given out by New Hope Media who runs Expo East and Expo West, what an honor!

It was certainly not all work for the three days we were at the Expo in Baltimore.  Mom’s Organic Market, one of our retail partner’s held a party at Alewife, a local bar with 40 beers on tap, at the end of the first day of the Expo.  We had a blast, thanks guys!

The Mom's Organic Market party was the place to unwind after the first day!

The Mom’s Organic Market party was the place to unwind after the first day!

And we got a recommendation to try out a Butcher Shop and Restaurant called Parts and Labor that sources local and humanely raised, free range animals which they butcher and cook on site, using the whole animal.  This place was so similar to Fore Street in Portland Maine it’s almost as if the idea of nose to tail local butchers working closely with near by farms is catching on!

This Wendell Berry quote really captures the whole knowing your food and your farmer idea.

This Wendell Berry quote on the menu really captures the whole knowing your food and your farmer idea.

And on that note we ate about half the menu, our dinner ended with a recommendation from our server Issac who we will all remember forever for his insights:

Best ham ever, it was truly a divine experience.

Best ham ever, it was truly a divine experience.

Thanks Baltimore, it was fun, it was exciting and we are already planning for Expo West in L.A. this coming March 2015!

Sheri had more than a TON of shipping to do after the Expo, 4 pallets plus the cart, all in one day!

Sheri had more than a TON of shipping to do after the Expo, 4 pallets plus the cart, all in one day!

 

Fall Favorite: Cauliflower 3 Ways

Now that Fall is officially here I’ve been getting into some new recipes for one of the seasons most versatile vegetables: cauliflower and her cousin, romanesco.  Part of the Cruciferous family, one cup of cauliflower has more than 73% of your daily vitamin c!  Cauliflower can also help you to detox, it’s got anti-inflammatory properties and is an excellent source of dietary fiber.  As you’ll see from the wide variety of recipes I’ve gathered here, cauliflower is super versatile and full of as much flavor as nutrition.  Happy Autumn eating!

From LowCarbSlowCarb.com

From LowCarbSlowCarb.com

My first recipe suggestion is to make rice out of cauliflower, a low carbohydrate, high fiber, nutrient packed alternative to a grain side dish.  I’ve eaten this rice as a side with baked chicken, in lettuce wraps with shredded pork, basically it can be substituted anywhere you’d usually use rice.  How cool is that?  Check out this super simple recipe on www.lowcarbslowcarb.com under, you guessed it, Cauliflower Rice!

cauliflower-steak-au-poivre

Cauliflower Steak au Poivre by Jacky Hackett

Next up, Cauliflower Steaks.  This recipe was sent to me by a friend who I have shared many a steak tartare and pork chop with so I knew it had to be delicious.  I was a bit skeptical but he assured me this was no wimpy vegan alternative, it’s filling, awesome plant food thank you very much!  The recipe I like best comes from www.jaxhouse.com, aka Jacky Hackett, a food enthusiast mom blogger.  You can find her simple and easy recipe under ‘Cauliflower Steak au Poivre.  The trick is using your cast iron skillet in a very hot oven and the results are wickedly good.

Photo from TheIronYou.com

Photo from TheIronYou.com

This last recipe is sure to convert you to the power of what you used to think of as a bland white vegetable: The Cauliflower Grilled Cheese.  Yes, it’s gluten free, it’s a full serving of veggies and it’s got a gooey cheese center.  This recipe can be found on www.TheIronYou.com a blog run by a guy named Mike who thinks we could all eat better and exercise more for a more awesome us, I think he’s onto something!  Search for ‘Cauliflower Grilled Cheese’ and you’ll find a recipe for what will become one of your fall favorites, no matter what your relationship is to gluten.  Pair this with a hot bowl of tomato soup and call it lunch.

Be sure to check out the other recipes and ideas these bloggers have to offer!

Recycled and Biodegradeable: No More Plastic!

Plush recycled paper wrapping and biodegradable food starch packing pillows- be the change you want to see in the world- one shipment at a time!

Plush recycled paper wrapping and biodegradable food starch packing pillows – be the change you want to see in the world- one shipment at a time!

We are celebrating another small step in the right direction: our new packing materials just arrived!  Every Fire Cider order will now be wrapped in recycled, recyclable and reusable cushioned brown paper.  Goodbye plastic bubble wrap.  We are still using compostable food starch packing peanuts, which you can easily compost at home.  Only now, the peanuts are wrapped in a biodegradable pillow so they are contained and easy to re-use or toss into the compost.  Don’t you wish every business used earth friendly packaging?  It’s never too soon to start or to at least start bugging your local haunts to make the switch!

Coming later this fall: 100% post consumer custom Fire Cider boxes and paper tape.  Yeah,  paper tape instead of plastic, it’s stronger and recyclable, how cool is that? In about a month everything from our Fire Cider bottles to our promotional material to all of our shipping material will be recycled, recyclable, re-usable and/or home compostable.  Oh yeah!  Love your Mother Earth and have a happy Labor Day weekend!

 

Sean Callaghan Joins Team Fire Cider!

Dana and Sean with our other new addition!

Dana and Sean with our other new addition!

We are getting ready for our biggest fall yet and so we have hired our first full-time employee, welcome to team Fire Cider Mr. Callaghan!   Sean’s actually been helping us out, officially and unofficially, for years.  Sean and Benny ‘Fingers’ Kohn wrote and recorded a rock n roll theme song for Fire Cider in 2012.  Sean has helped us in the kitchen making Fire Cider, and has personally hand washed many, many pounds of horseradish roots.  Sean is now offering in store Fire Cider tastings and attends the SoWa Farmer’s Market in Boston every Sunday.

Ready to rock at the SoWa Market in Boston.  Nice T-shirt!

Ready to rock at the SoWa Market in Boston. Nice T-shirt!

Now that he’s officially, finally, part of Team Fire Cider, you’ll see Sean all over New England offering free samples of Fire Cider at festivals, shops and cafes.  Sean will be working closely with our retail partners too.  Want to see Fire Cider for sale somewhere?  Feel the need for an in store demo aka free samples?  Sean can be emailed directly at, you guessed it: Sean@FireCider.com

The Big E is held in Springfield MA every year.  Sean, Dana, Brian, Sheri and I will be there, next to the Massachusetts building on the weekends, Friday September 12 through Sunday the 14th, the weekend of the 20th and 21st and Friday the 26th to Sunday the 28th.  Last year we gave out about 15,500 samples of Fire Cider (in biodegradable cups!) over the course of the event.   Let’s see if we can’t beat that record this year!

Sean and Dana having a laugh in the warehouse.

Sean and Dana having a laugh in the warehouse.  DIY Halloween costume!

Cool Drinks for Hot Summer Days

Drinking vinegar for its myriad health benefits goes back to ancient Greece, no wait, even further, to 5000 BCE when Babylonians were using date palms to make vinegar.  Warriors throughout history have used vinegar mixed with water for strength and energy. Vinegar drinks and vinegar tonics infused with herbs, roots, flowers, you name it, have been around for many centuries.  In New England farmers have been making a drink called ‘switchel’ to keep them hydrated and ward off heat stroke during the long, hot summer days:

“They drank a quenching beverage that functioned much like modern Gatorade: switchel, also called switzel or haymaker’s punch. It contained water, a sweetener—either molasses, maple syrup, honey or brown sugar—ginger, and cider vinegar. All the ingredients (except water) happen to be sources of potassium—an electrolyte. Molasses is especially high in potassium.” Read the rest of this article HERE!

Apple Cider Vinegar is an incredibly medicinal food since it contains several different beneficial acids plus beta-carotene, amino acid, bone building minerals, enzymes, magnesium, potassium, pectin and tannins.  No wonder humans have been using this super food since we figured out how to preserve apples in the form of vinegar!

Here are my three favorite vinegar drinks, aka, switchels, to help keep you cool and healthy this summer:

Dana’s Pomegranate Switchel

Ingredients to make one cup of Switchel concentrate:

  • ¼ cup of Fire Cider
  • 3 Tablespoons fresh ginger juice
  • 3 Tablespoons pomegranate molasses
  • 1 Tablespoon raw honey

Shake well to combine all ingredients.

Serve about 2-4 ounces of concentrate over ice, top with soda water to make a pint.

Store leftover Switchel mix in the refrigerator.

Citrus Switchel

Makes 2 servings-

  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar or Fire Cider
  • juice from 1/2 a grapefruit
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons, or more to taste, raw, local wildflower honey
  • Soda water or plain water
  • 2 lime wedges

Combine the first 3 ingredients and makes sure to dissolve al the honey.  Fill two pint glasses with ice and split the switchel mix between the glasses.  Top with soda water and garnish with a lime wedge.

Dr. Earl Mindell’s Switchel– from his book ‘Amazing Apple Cider Vinegar‘ which is also where I got some of the information for this blog post.  Makes 2 servings-

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar or Fire Cider

1 1/2 tablespoons black strap molasses

2 cups warmed water (to melt the molasses)

Combine and pour over ice.

Fire Cider Photo and Video Contest

Show us your best Fire Cider face!   Or your Fire Cider tattoo (no, seriously, we heard this was a real thing!), your friends trying Fire Cider for the first time, the funniest, weirdest, coolest way you use Fire Cider.  Get creative and you could win one of four $25 gift certificates to your favorite Fire Cider retail shop.  Sound like fun?  Here’s how to enter the contest:

Send us one photo OR one 60 second or shorter video along with your favorite place to buy Fire Cider.  We’ll let our Facebook fans pick two photo winners and two video winners and each will receive a $25 gift certificate to the shop of your choice.

Amy and Dana say: Beware The Underdose!

Amy and Dana say: Beware The Underdose!

Email your photo or video with the subject line “Fire Cider Contest” to Amy@FireCider.com by Monday July 14th at midnight est.  We will post your photos and videos on our Facebook and Twitter during and after the contest.  Brian, Dana, Sheri and Amy will narrow down the entries to our top favorite picks and let people vote on our Facebook page starting on Tuesday July 15th.

Our daily doses, down the hatch!

Our daily doses, down the hatch!

Like us on Facebook if you haven’t already!  The four winners will be emailed directly with how to redeem their gift certificates.  You can send in as many submissions as you like, one per email please.  Here’s Amy and Dana’s Fire Cider faces, show us yours!!

Hurts so good!

Hurts so good!

New Equipment, Thanks to The CDC!

Have I mentioned lately how amazing it is to be working in partnership with the Franklin County Community Development Corporation– say that 5 times, fast!   They offer guidance to anyone interested in starting a business and they have provided us with a space to produce Fire Cider and continue to grow our small business.  The CDC is currently under construction to expand their cold and dry storage as well as their commercial kitchen.   We are stoked to have more space to make more batches of Fire Cider.

Last year the CDC’s loan program, headed by Alan Singer, made it possible for us to upgrade all of our equipment to food grade stainless steel.   We were super happy to say goodbye to all of our plastic barrels.  We found them homes as rain barrels!

Stainless steel steeping tank, stainless steep pump parts, only the best for your Fire Cider!

Stainless steel steeping tank, stainless steep pump parts, only the best for your Fire Cider!

Less than a year later, we approached Alan with another loan request, this time for two pieces of kitchen equipment that would save us many long hours in the kitchen, taking a lot of stress and physical labor out of making Fire Cider.  The result?  An awesome scrubbing tunnel that has turned a 10-12 person hour job into a 30 minute exercise.  Yes, you read that correctly.  It used to take 2 people working non stop scrubbing organic horseradish for hours on end just to prep that one ingredient for 2-3 batches of Fire Cider.  Now, we can achive even better results in just 30 minutes, and that includs set up, clean up and break down!   Here’s a fun video of Dana and Brian trying out the scrubbing tunnel for the first time.  It’s a bit loud, so turn the volume down!

Here are the before and after photos, can you tell we are super impressed with our investment?!

Organic horseradish, covered in not so delicious organic dirt!

Organic horseradish, covered in not so delicious organic dirt!

So fresh and so clean and ready to be turned into Fire Cider.

So fresh and so clean and ready to be turned into Fire Cider.

With our second loan we were also able to purchase a chopper for the lemons and oranges.  Processing hundreds of pounds of citrus by hand is just asking for carpal tunnel, not to mention an injury waiting to happen.  This chopper, with it’s graphic warnings, is definitely scarier than the chef’s knives we’ve been using, and will save our hands and arms, as long as we keep them away from the blades!

All thumbs ups, not to worry, we have cut resistant gloves to protect our hands while cleaning the machine.

All thumbs ups, not to worry, we have cut resistant gloves to protect our hands while cleaning the machine.

And here’s our new chopper in action, making batches Fire Cider just got a lot easier, which means that the three of us can safely continue making you Fire Cider for many years to come.   Yup, this video is loud too, what can I say, I’m working on my videographer skills!

We are super thankful to the CDC and their staff for supporting the growth of our small business, we truly couldn’t do this without them!  If you are thinking about starting a business, the CDC has you covered from the very beginning.

Fire Cider, Co-op Grocery Stores and the Dr. Oz Show!

Last Friday I had the opportunity to share my favorite home remedy, Fire Cider, with Dr. Oz, two of the sharks from the show ‘Shark Tank’ as well as the Oz studio audience!   Fire Cider isn’t just the best home remedy I know of, it’s also a great big gateway to using food as medicine.  Why?  I think a big part of what makes Fire Cider so awesome is that it’s accessible: all the ingredients can be found in any grocery store, they are all easily recognizable by most people and they combine to make one powerful tonic with immediate results!  Good foods combine to make better, more medicinally potent foods.  And maybe you’ll start with Fire Cider and branch out into other plant-based remedies, start using more organic, whole foods in your diet or discover the power of co-cooperatively owned and operated grocery stores.  True story: a customer told me she started shopping at her local co-op because they were the only store around that carries Fire Cider.  Now she shops there all the time.  And that’s exactly what I mean when I say Fire Cider can be a catalyst for change.

A big part of what inspires Brian, Dana and I is how Fire Cider works on a personal, local and national level.  I think it’s pretty to clear to most of us that our food system is broken and totally unsustainable.  And it seems to me that healing our food system and turning it into something that’s health building, good for mother earth and sustainable into the future is up to us as individuals and is the responsibility of all of us who work in the natural foods industry.  Since we started our business of getting Fire Cider to as many people as possible we have been working closely with locally owned retail stores and specifically with NCGA Co-Ops aka community owned grocery stores.  When you shop at a co-op your money stays in your local community, it supports the store so that it can offer low prices for high quality food that directly meets the needs of the community the store serves.  Your food dollars go towards supporting local agriculture, high quality foods and well-paying jobs for your friends and neighbors.

When you shop at a conventional chain grocery store, most of the money you spend goes to the corporate headquarters.   The majority of these chain grocers offer conventional food and ‘food products’ most of which contains one or all of the following: herbicides, pesticides, hormone disruptors, genetically modified organisms, refined sugars and carbohydrates.  No one would choose to put that kind of poison into their body and a co-op grocery offers a whole community the power to choose.  Owned and operated on a local level,  a co-op grocery store puts food choices directly into the hands of its community.   We are proud of the mutually supportive relationships we have formed over the past 3 years with retail shops and co-ops all over the country.  By working together we can all help each other succeed.  Everything is connected: what you buy and where you shop are powerful ways to make your voice heard! When you look at things in this way, Fire Cider is so much more than a product we sell, it’s a ripple effect that can positively effect our local community, our amazing customers and business owners across the county who are committed to making important changes in our food system.

I love handing out samples of Fire Cider, we’ve handed out over a quarter of a million samples in the past 3 years, and it’s amazing to watch the paradigm shift that happens when someone tries Fire Cider for the first time.  These simple, everyday foods, have a potent and immediate positive effect, food becomes medicine for the first time and a whole new door of possibility opens!  It happened for me years ago and I’m so happy to be able to share my passion with anyone and everyone willing to give Fire Cider a try.  And that’s the long version of why I jumped at the chance to go on national television and tell all of Dr. Oz’s viewers why Fire Cider is my go-to, all time favorite remedy.  Fire Cider has a long history, stretching back as far as ancient Greece and we are proud to be bringing our version of this old-time combination of cider vinegar and honey to folks who have never heard of it or even thought of their food as their best health care.  Brian, Dana and I are committed to spreading the word about food as medicine and contributing all that we can to making our food system healthy and wholesome for all.  Here’s a short clip from the show, the link to the full show is below!

Watch the full clip here on the Dr. Oz website!

 

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