Monday, April 30, 2012

The beginning of conventional farming, edible weeds

The first half of the 20th saw many wars fought, many lives lost and Anzac day is an important day to commemorate the Australian fallen soldiers and the battle that they fought to protect Australia, we thank them for this sacrifice.

This part in time,  also marked the advent of conventional farming with the use of chemical pesticides and fertilisers.  Once World War II was over, ammunition companies needed to find a use for chemicals that were created for use in warfare, in particular ammonium nitrate which was an a cheap source of nitrogen. Soon after more chemical concoctions were produced and infiltrated agricultural farms the world over, in particular a highly toxic substance known as DDT, which since was also found to be damaging to reproductive systems in humans, carcinogenic and endocrine disrupting.  DDT has since been banned for use in food, but the tragedy as outlined by the Soil Association, is " that 150 of the available 311 pesticides commonly used have been identified as potentially causing cancer".* 
The irony is that all this drama could be avoided by eating organic food, supporting organic agriculture and refusing to buy into need to use artificial chemicals to grow food.  WE create the world with our dollars, so create a beautiful one, one where life grows naturally....

One place this happens, sometimes much to your disgust is in the garden, in World War II, the virtues of weeds were rediscovered when food was not always in abundance.  Many cultures, regularly enjoy weeds as part as usual daily fare, with some of our most common weeds bottled and sold as superfoods, namely dandelion, reputed for its ability to stimulate the liver, stimulates fat metabolism and serves as an amazing blood purifier.  This week our focus is on foraging in your own backyard, taking a leaf out of your grandparents wisdom...this topic does come with a clause though...don't eat anything you haven't identified and know to be safe...and if you don't know, get out there and get educated. 

 Join us on Facebook this week for some wild weeded recipes, and to identify some weeds in your own backyard that can be nibbled raw or added to a salad.

 Also I need to introduce you to Clare Flynn, she leads a double life as an amazing wholefood chef and yoga teacher and combined she makes life delicious, she has contributed some divine recipes for you. Try this week's salad, Cauliflower, kale and pomegranate.  To learn more about Clare, check her out here 


Forgot to place your order??, register for our SMS reminder service and never miss getting the best organic produce delivered each week. 

Anzac day traditionally marks the harvest day for Chestnuts, and rightly so, we have them in abundance and at a sensational price.  Chestnuts are such a divine Autumn nut that is a great source of protein, exceptionally high in vitamin c,  high in folate and the minerals, iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese, and they taste amazing.
The organic Cos lettuce coming in from Macclesfield is fabulous a great size, and sweet to the bite.
Organic Avocado's are back, after a short absence, we will now have enough to supply everyone.
Organic Passionfruit; we have panama passionfruit in, these are a natural hybrid that has not been artifially bred.  The panana passionfruit is large in size, with a light purple skin and tiny white dots on the exterior.  The inside flesh is yellow to orange and is recongised to be one of the sweetest varieties.REGISTER HERE.  Once you are registered you can then text through your seasonal box orders whenever you like.  How easy is that?  

"Weeds are flowers too, once you get to know them."
A.A. Milne

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Eat some brain food, fresh organic walnuts, chioggio beetroots and broccolini is back

I have been reading a most fascinating book lately, on nutrition for the brain and I won't bore you with all the details, just yet intriguing as they are but focus this week on a broader topic of brain food...Thinking, dreaming, cooking, focusing, body movement, breathing, living, laughing all these functions and in fact every action you can think of require the brain.  Considering that the brain is the control centre for the whole body, I think that nourishing this organ with the right for foods, should be a priority.

Interestingly the brain requires around 20% of our daily energy intake, and its preferable source is carbohydrates (the organic fresh variety of fruits and vegetables).  This information is no green card to indulge in high sugar foods, quite the contrary with researchers finding that high blood sugar is associated with elevated cortisol...this hormone actually impairs memory.  So keep the food as natural as possible, and choose the slow releasing carbohydrates like beans, potatoes, bananas (with some walnuts..perfect mix), apples and the majority of fresh organic produce contain fibre, this slows down the blood glucose release creating perfect energy for the brain. GRAZE LIKE AN ANIMAL, with the idea being to give your brain a steady stream of energy from fresh foods, preferably organic, eaten often.


The brain is the master computer that sends chemical messages throughout the whole body, instructing the organs on what to do. This process is made possible by an important group of chemical messengers, prostaglandins, these initiate the self repair mechanisms in the body. In order to manufacture healthy brain cells and prostaglandins, the body MUST have Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.  Integral to the cell membranes and enzymes within the cells. 
Your brain is 60% fat and it requires supply of healthy essential fats to create healthy cells. 
Interestingly these fats can also be used to treat  treating depression and other psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia, as well as benefiting infant brain development.
Some great sources include;  organic flax seeds, organic walnuts organic sunflower seeds, organic pumpkin seeds, cold water fish (salmon and sardines), organic avocado, organic olives and their oil.
Not all fats are created equal and the nasty trans fats found in some processed foods, and all deep fried foods can actually damage cellular structure and affect thinking by affecting the synapses.  So the message is clean, keep your food as fresh, organic and healthy as possible.

The path to a bigger, better brain is loaded with Omega-3 fats, antioxidants, and fibre. Some stand out superfoods in the brain department include:

 ORGANIC BERRIES, in particular blueberries are a fantastic source of antioxidants that mop up free radicals.  These compounds can also improve memory and motor skills and reverse age related decline.

Most of the Alzheimers present in society is attributed to elevated homocysteines (chemicals that are a normal protein metabolism.)  In order to break down homocysteines, the body needs folate, and the B vitamins, founds in leafy organic green vegetables such as kale, spinach, silverbeet, broccoli.

Avocado provides a great source of beneficial brain fats of the monostaurated variety which promoted increased blood flow and circulation, lowering blood pressure and increasing oxygen to the brain.

Not only a great source of vitamin E, but the humble walnut also contains Omega 3 fatty acids.  Walnuts also triple melatonin levels in the body, which makes them a great food to munch if you are having trouble sleeping
No coincidences that the walnut resembles to perfection the human brain.

This list is not exhaustive and this week on FACEBOOK we are going to talk all things brain food with new brain food recipes, tips and information.

Whats in Season this week....

Fresh organic walnuts are being picked from the trees as we talk, that means fresh walnut meat, and no damaged fats.  Great to shell and eat with the family.
The cooler nights mean that supply and quality of organic broccoli and cauliflower getting better and better.  The organic broccoli is divine at the moment. 
Fresh organic papaya is back this week, truly a divine organic fruit, add to youur smoothie or just enjoy it as a delicious snack.
This week we have organic chioggio beetroots with leaves available, these beetroots have a distinctive white striping throughout the vegetable.  Look and taste delicious.
Organic Spring onions are back this week and make for a perfect addition to salads or omelettes.
We also have organic broccolini coming back this week, this is perfect for kids with a milder sweeter flavour that the bigger broccoli.

"Motivation is like food for the brain.  you cannot get enough in one sitting, it needs continual and regular top ups."
Peter Davies

Monday, April 16, 2012

Eat well, go organic...

Hope that this email finds you fabulous and recovered from the Easter madness.  We have so much organic health and goodness to help you either way. I'm not sure where you are right now, but where ever that is, I believe that there is always some room for improvement.  Whether that be including more raw foods into your diet to help increase overall nutrition, health, energy and happiness and increasing muscle mass which is important for so many things, including improving metabolism, strengtening connective tissue, and bone density.  Now I am no expert on personal training, but I am in food and nutrition and this week, we have some sensational people in their fields that want to educate and empower YOU!  (FOR FREE!).  
What about an opportunity to hear Mr Universe Billy Simmonds, speak on fitness, health and veganism, or raw living foods chef Ace Rosengarten talk all things raw delicious foods teaching some amazing skills in food preparation.  Well come listen to them both....
RUSU REALFOODS, RMIT University, City Campus, 360 Swanston St, Foodcourt (Building 8, Level 4) Melbourne
I know that its more challenging in this colder weather to get out and move your body, and sometimes feed ourselves best when all we crave is comfort, but there are so many foods that can warm you from the inside out and so many exercises we can do in our homes to maintain fitness. So this week that's what we are all about....continuously always in optimum nutrition and making everyday our best day.  This is a result of eating the best food you have available at anytime, that is organic farm fresh local foods..ours...
This week we are going to talk healthy comfort foods, sharing recipes hint and tips. Join us on FACEBOOK.  
Forgot to place your order??, register for our SMS reminder service and never miss getting the best organic produce delivered each week.REGISTER HERE.  Once you are registered you can then text through your seasonal box orders whenever you like.  How easy is that?  


Well this wet weather in conjuction with sunshine means that our beautiful vegies are getting a nice water as well as heat.  We have quite a few new lines this week
For conisseurs of chestnuts, this is your week with an abundance of local chestnuts harvested this week.  Roast them for the most divine flavour.
Organic Leeks are sensational quality at the moment and make for a delicious soup.
Both Organic Butternut and Jap pumpkin, have amazing flavour at such an amazing price.
Organic red chilli's are available this week, perfect for adding a little heat to your dish.
The excellent growing conditions means that all our varieties of apples will be of great quality with Fuji, Granny Smith, being harvested.
Buerre Bosc pears are great ripe or unripe, if you prefer a firmer, yet still sweet pear, this variety is perfect.
If you are a fan of Kale, it has been so spectacular lately and tasting even better.  Kale is one of the most nutritional vegetables around and we encourage you all to try it. 

"Exercise should be regarded as tribute to the heart. "
Gene Tunney

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Make this the healthiest Easter ever

What an egg-citing time of the, food and holidays. Easter, has been celebrated the world over for many centuries and irrespective of religious denomination, is celebrated primarily with symbolic food.  In our home as it is many, its hot cross buns on Good Friday, and a massive family feast on Easter Sunday.  Typically rich and decadant, it makes me feel like I need to alkalize the rest of the year.
You see holidays, Easter in particular have evolved from a wholesome traditional occasion to a commercialised opportunity for mass consumption and indulgence of foods that rob our bodies of health.  
Ironically Easter, the world over is a symbol of the regeneration of Earth, so why not use these couple of day's off to re-evaluate where your are health wise and where you want to be? What you can you do to help your body re-generate health more effectively?  What foods should you eat?  What foods should you avoid?  Ironically it's most of the foods that we celebrate Easter with, refined processed sugars and products, that we need to reduce.  So this Easter in the midst of the food madness why not make like a bunny and munch on a carrot, some raw spinach or make a delicious juice.  You see food needn't be unhealthy to taste good, its quite the opposite, the best tasting foods are generally in their natural state, raw, unprocessed, unrefined, full of flavour and always ORGANIC.
Give life giving gifts, foods that promote health, make everyone a delicious salad and at least enjoy before indulging in all the Easter fare.
This week we are going to share some Easter recipes, some not so nutritional, but traditional....but lots OF GOODNESS.  ORDER YOUR GOODNESS NOW.
Forgot to place your order??, register for our SMS reminder service and never miss getting the best organic produce delivered each week.REGISTER HERE.  Once you are registered you can then text through your seasonal box orders whenever you like.  How easy is that?  
Dont forget that some delivery days and zones have changed, check here to see yours.  CHECK DELIVERY DAY/ZONES
So just when the weather was getting used to the rain and cooler weather, Melbourne is set to put on some spectacular sunshine this week, which will be glorious for our produce, fingers crossed for some strawberries.  
How's this for an egg-cellent deal, organic eggs, dozen for only $6.99
Organic Pineapple's are back, generally these are sent out unripened.  Please allow to ripen at room temperature for at least 3 days.
Oraganic Rockmelon, coming in from Country Victoria, again once ripened for a couple of days at room temperatures, they are divine.
Organic Passionfruit are in this week due to popular demand and a great price at only $2.10 each.
Organic Ottway Red Potatoes, these are delicious, and a great all rounder potato.  They clean up beautifully.
Local Fuji apples are being picked off the tree as we speak and are divine.  No Pesticides, artificial fertilisers, sprays or waxes.
 "If you don't take care of this the most magnificent machine that you will ever be given...where are you going to live?" "
Karyn Calabrese
We thank you for your support as always, we are very grateful that you are making your body healthier, your kids stronger and the world a better place to be.  We wish you and your family a safe, healthy and happy Easter, till next week 
 Thanks you are awesome, look forward to serving you

Angela Gioffre 
(Your nutritionist) and the team at Organic Empire XXX