You are currently viewing archive for September 2012
Posted By Susan Bernhardt
The fall equinox occurred on Saturday, September 22rd this year.  
Deirdre decided to have an autumnal equinox luncheon and invited 
eleven friends.  Kay helped her with the preparations.  It was 
peak harvest time and Deirdre wanted her meal to consist of the 
late summer and fall fruits and vegetables she had gathered. 

Setting the tables outside on her deck, Deirdre and Kay placed a 
bottle of infused herbal oil, that Deirdre had made, at each place 
setting as a gift for her guests to take home.  

To make the oil, she took one cup of light olive oil and used ½ 
cup of a chopped fresh herb from her garden and let it infuse the 
oil with the herb at room temperature.  The herbs settled to the 
bottom.  This morning, on the fifth day she carefully ladled the 
clear olive oil into new bottles, tightly closed the bottles and 
labeled them with the type of herb used.  She would tell her 
friends to refrigerate the oil when they arrived home.  It would 
keep up to six months.  The fresh herbs she had used were 
rosemary, tarragon, dill, cilantro, oregano and basil, each in a 
different jar.  

On the menu this afternoon was:  maple apple chicken breasts, 
roasted fall vegetables, squash tea bread with basil garlic 
butter, and baked apples with dried fruits and walnuts for 

Deirdre said a prayer before the meal began.  It was taken from 
St. Francis.  "All praise be yours, my Lord, through Sister Earth, 
our mother, Who feeds us and produces various fruits with colored 
flowers and herbs.  Amen.  

"Amen," everyone replied and the feast began.  

Happy autumn, everyone!


With abundant tomatoes still on the vines, peppers and many other 
vegetables and herbs, Kay and Deirdre plan to cover much of their 
gardens with plastic because of the threat of frost this weekend 
in Sudbury Falls.

Throughout the summer, Kay has been freezing whole tomatoes, 
serrano and banana peppers, blanching beans before freezing, 
baking butternut squash before freezing, making and freezing 
pesto, and drying herbs from her organic garden to use during the 
winter. With the end coming soon to her organic garden and the 
farmers market turning into a memory, she wants to insure that she 
and her family continue to eat as much organic produce as 

Kay carries in her wallet, a shoppers guide to pesticides for 
produce, put out by the Environmental Working Group. An American 
environmental non-profit organization, it researches the toxic 
chemicals of foods.  They use the power of public information to 
help protect public health.  In today's economy with the price of 
food rising, the list Kay carries indicates produce that isn't 
necessary to buy organically. Also it lists foods that should only 
be bought organically because of the high amount of pesticides 

The following foods should be bought organically due to their high 
pesticide content. The "dirty dozen" foods are:
1. Peaches  2. Apples  3. Bell Peppers  4. Celery  5. Nectarines  
6. Strawberries - you can never get the pesticides out of 
strawberries.  7. Cherries  8. Kale  9. Lettuce  10. Grapes 
(imported)  11. Carrots  12. Pears.

When Kay can't find organic produce of the "dirty dozen" foods, 
she uses a one part vinegar to three part water wash to try and 
remove much of the bacteria and pesticides especially with 
berries, grapes, and cherries.  She rinses the food thoroughly 
with water afterwards.  

The following foods are lowest in pesticides, and can be bought 
nonorganically to save money.  1. Onion  2. Avocado  3. Sweet Corn  
4. Pineapple  5. Mango  6. Asparagus  7. Sweet Peas  8. Kiwi  9. 
Cabbage  10. Eggplant  11. Papaya  12. Watermelon  13. Broccoli  
14. Tomato  15. Sweet Potato.

As always... good food for good health! 


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Susan Bernhardt


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