Garlic Olive Oil Pizza with Fresh Tomatoes and Veggies

Veggie MediterraneanThis pizza is so quick and easy to make for a weeknight dinner. We use a store-bought crust to save on time, and throw together whatever veggies we have on hand for fresh flavor.

If you’re craving pizza, this is a great way to incorporate your farmer’s market finds and get the most nutrients.

We use garlic and olive oil for the base, instead of a tomato sauce, so the flavors of the veggies really shine. Let us know your favorite variations!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 pre-made 12-inch organic pizza crust
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced (we LOVE garlic, you could use less)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon wild mediterranean oregano
  • 1 roma tomato, sliced
  • 1 small head broccoli, chopped
  • 1 zucchini squash, halved and sliced in half inch rounds
  • 1 portabella mushroom, cut in cubes
  • 1 red or white onion, halved and sliced
  • 1/4 cup chopped black olives
  • 8 ounces organic feta cheese, crumbled

Optional: add pepperoni, bacon, asparagus, artichokes, spinach, or any other toppings you love

PREPARATION

  1. Brush crust with olive oil.
  2. Layer veggies and garlic evenly over crust.
  3. Top with feta.
  4. Finish by lightly drizzling olive oil and sprinkling with salt and pepper and oregano.
  5. Bake according to package directions or until cheese is melted and crust is baked to desired crispiness.
  6. Add parmesan and red pepper flakes before serving.

 

21 EASY ways to be more Earth-friendly in 2016

earth day every day

Happy Earth Day! Below we share some ways to be more sustainable without having to make huge life changes. No one’s asking you to go off the grid. It’s strength in numbers we’re going for. Each of our small acts has a greater impact when combined. No act is too small to make a difference.

1. Wash your laundry in cold water and hang clothes out to dry.

Save money and energy at the same time by washing your laundry in cold water. If you have a yard or balcony, put up a clothesline, or use a drying rack for inside spaces.

2. Wear your clothes more than once before you wash them.

This will not only save time and energy, but your clothes will last longer.

3. Buy clothes and products that you love and will last a long time.

Cheaply made items such as clothing often do not include fair wages for the people who made them. Buying things we truly love ensures we get the most use out of them versus throwing goods in the landfill.

4. Use less (or no!) disposable items.

It’s a small change to use cloth napkins and towels instead of paper towels, disposable countertop wipes, and other one-time-use items.

bulk-food5. Buy in bulk.  

Many things we buy, especially convenience items, come in large amounts of non-recyclable plastic packaging. Save money and buy in bulk. You can then use reusable containers to serve and store in smaller portions

6. Buy organic.

Organic products not only protect your health, but the also protect the health of the environment by avoiding harmful pesticides and chemicals

7. Eat more fresh foods.

Processed foods require energy to run factories, contain chemicals, and added packaging. Eat mostly fresh fruits and vegetables, and take the trash out less.

8. Make your own beauty products.

Toothpaste and deodorant are easy to make at home with cheap, simple ingredients saving money and avoiding chemicals and disposable packaging.

9. Make your own household cleaners.

Again, a few cheap, simple ingredients can be combined to make almost any cleaner, from countertops to toilets, as well as dish and laundry detergents.

10. Buy local!

Support your community and discourage the costly transportation of goods cross-country.

11. Use public transportation or carpool.

Ok, we know this one’s not always convenient, but when it is, do it!

12. Use thermal curtains.

Save on heating and cooling costs while conserving energy.


13. PLAY OUTSIDE!IMG_6513

The more we are connected to nature, the more we will want to protect it.

14. Grow your own herbs. 

Add some life to your home and deliciousness to your food! Herbs require little space and little effort.

15. Add an air-purifying plant to your home.

Many of the best air purifying plants are some of the easiest to keep alive! Plus, adding green to your space promotes relaxation.

16. Unplug your phone and laptop chargers.

Did you know these common electronics still use energy even when they’re not in use? Save money and unplug them when you’re not charging.

17. Use reusable grocery bags.

In Boulder, we’ve already banned plastic bags. Hooray! Not only do reusable bags reduce waste, but you can fit loads more in one bag, making for less trips. YES!

18. Repair your leaky faucet.

Even a slow drip really adds up over the course of the year.

19 Ask to borrow items you don’t use very frequently instead buying them new.  

buyerarchy of needsLawnmowers, leaf blowers and power tools are expensive and take up space. Declutter and save money by borrowing instead.

20. Carry a reusable water bottle.

There are so many places to refill these days. Save money, avoid plastic, and use your own water bottle. 

21. Support companies that share your sustainable values. 

Vote with your dollar. Choosing companies who share your values allows them to continue or expand their efforts while encouraging other companies to jump on the bandwagon.

Share your tips with how to be more Earth-friendly and sustainable on our Facebook.

Adventures in Asheville, NC

Photo from Pinterest

This weekend was proof of the old adage that if you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.  Karl, Jake, and I had an absolute blast savoring thoughtfully made organic food and exchanging lively stories with like-minded friends at the Mother Earth News Fair nestled in the blue tinted mountains of Asheville, North Carolina.

For years, we have attended Mother Earth fairs around the country sampling the best local fare and educating festival-goers on the healthy benefits of pure, straight from the source, extra virgin olive oil and olives. With it’s heart-warming hospitality and love of all things local, Asheville is one of our favorite destinations. Charming Victorian-era buildings and flower-drenched trees line the streets near the easily walkable eclectic downtown, with its endless breweries, organic clothing boutiques, and creative gift shops. Just a few miles west, the winding roads of the Blue Ridge Parkway lead to relaxing views of the spring green forest and layers of mountains worn down to rolling hills by Father Time. 

But traveling for us is mostly a marvelous treasure hunt for food so good you laugh out loud. This trip, we were delighted to find Nine Mile in downtown Asheville, a local restaurant serving Caribbean dishes packed with layers of rich flavor and warm spices. We tried the smoky vegetarian chili, the vibrant Easy Skanking salad with rare ahi tuna and grilled pineapple, and the star of the show, the Jamaican Me Thirsty, made with succulent chicken, flavorful zucchini and yellow squash, and perfectly al dente pasta in a red jerk sauce. This place is not one to miss, y’all!

So. Good. 

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Karl, Jake, and Amy at Nine Mile in downtown Asheville

We also couldn’t wait to tell everyone about Koreana, a tasty (you guessed it) Korean restaurant plating up awesome lunch boxes including spicy kimchi and sweet pickled veggies. These ancient fermented foods are not only sensational, but they can also heal your digestive system with good bacteria called probiotics.  
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Speaking of ferments, at the show we caught up with our friends and fellow vendors Jordan and Jen, owners of Fab Ferments. Their radiant personalities and bright, funky designs are hard to miss, and that’s a good thing because their traditionally made Raw Cultured Veggies, Kimchi, Sauerkraut, Beet Kvass, and unfiltered Kombucha are OUT OF THIS WORLD.

At the Healthy Harvest booth, we excitedly launched our new healing Olive Essentials Facial Oils formulated by longtime Mother Earth lecturer, author, herbalist and esthetician, Stephanie Tourles, using only organic certified or wildcrafted essential oils and our unbelievably silky organic Tuscan olive oil. While many natural beauty products use olive oil as a key ingredient, when it comes to olive oil, ours is simply the best. (Stay tuned for news on Karl’s trip to the farm in Tuscany later this summer!)

Of course these are just some of the many reasons to visit Mother Earth News Fairs, where you can attend fascinating lectures and workshops on tiny homes, organic farming, herbal medicine, and more or shop from small producers who care about quality, community, and the environment. From raw honey and elderberry juice to geothermal heating and solar panels, there is no shortage of tasty food and lifestyle products that help us live in harmony with nature.

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Sound fun? Join us in Madison, Wisconsin July 9-10. Cheese? Yes please! Can’t make it? Give us a heads up on the best place to grab a bite! Post on our Facebook or email info@healthyharvests.com

 

Marinated Olives and Nuts

Recipe Courtesy of Anne Oakley at Alchemical Yoga
Olives and nuts marinated in extra virgin olive oil with rosemary, lemon zest, fennel seeds and hot pepper, is a savory, salty snack swirling with healthy fat, antioxidants, fiber, iron and copper. Plus, it’s a two-for-one recipe, in that you can eat the olives and nuts and then use the flavored olive oil for cooking or making salad dressing.
Walnuts taste great with olives, but, for this recipe, any type of nut will work, so take your pick. Give the olives a few days to soak up the flavors in the spicy, herbal, citrusy marinade then serve the olives and nuts as an appetizer, bring them as a hostess gift, or use them as a garnish for roasted vegetables and meat, a whole chicken, or fish.
Servings: 4
Time in the Kitchen: 10 minutes, plus at least 24 hours to marinate
Ingredients:
2 teaspoons fennel seeds
2 cups extra virgin olive oil
1 or 2 hot dried red peppers or 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 small sprigs fresh rosemary
Zest from 1 lemon
1 cup black or green olives
1 cup raw, unsalted walnuts (or other nut) (150 g)
Instructions:
Toast the fennel seeds in a dry pan until the seeds are aromatic and lightly toasted, 2 minutes. Turn off heat. Immediately add the olive oil, hot pepper, rosemary and lemon zest to the pan. Put the olives and nuts in a large glass jar. Pour the warm oil and seasonings on top. When the oil is cool, cover and refrigerate. For the best flavor, marinate the olives and nuts at least 24 to 48 hours before eating (they will stay fresh for several weeks in the refrigerator). Bring up to room temperature before serving.

What Makes Olive Oil “Extra Virgin?”

IMG_0932What makes olive oil “extra virgin?”

Lately, Extra Virgin Olive Oil has been getting a lot of attention in the news, from its cancer-fighting benefits to mafia-run fraud in Italy. But what exactly makes oil “extra virgin?” Does it matter?

The term “extra virgin” refers to the finest grade of olive oil made from the first cold press of olives and containing a maximum of one percent acidity.  Olive Oil Times states “it is the only cooking oil that is made without the use of chemicals and industrial refining.”

Very simply, the olive is crushed and the juice is extracted. This means you are basically eating the raw fruit, which is going to retain the most nutrients and phenols with impressive benefits such as heart and immune health.

Even if the oil is processed as extra-virgin, poor storage can degrade the quality. It is important to store extra virgin olive oil away from light and heat. That is why you’ll notice Healthy Harvest olive oil NEVER comes in plastic or clear containers. Our dark glass bottles and tins protect the integrity of our oil, so we guarantee it will never go rancid – ever.

Virgin olive oil is oil that is pressed without any industrial refinement; however, it doesn’t meet the strict taste and acidity standards set for “extra virgin.” Virgin olive oil is sometimes labeled ‘pure’ or ‘light.’  A lot of virgin quality olive oil is falsely labeled as ‘extra virgin.’

How do you know you bought the real deal?

First, check out this 2010 report from University of California-Davis. The study tested 19 brands labeled as extra virgin olive oil, yet only a few met those standards. Did your brand make the cut?

Next, it is very difficult to tell when olive oil has been adulterated, as the refined oils often used are colorless and odorless. However, you’ll notice pure extra virgin olive oil should have a bright green color, a strong olive aroma, and an undeniably fruity, pungent, and even peppery taste. It should also solidify when cold and will not leave a greasy film on the palate or skin.

But better than all of these methods is an independent chemist report or knowing your grower. Healthy Harvest oil is backed by both. Karl and Jake have not only known the family farmers who produce our products for nearly a decade, but they have also both visited the estate where the olives are grown, as well as the press and bottling facility. 

So what makes Healthy Harvest oil the the best?

  • Single Varietal of Olives
  • Sustainably Grown
  • Handpicked
  • Cold pressed within one day of being picked
  • No chemicals or additives
  • No refined oils

Sources:

http://www.healthfreedoms.org/only-one-type-of-olive-oil-has-the-therapeutic-potential-to-maximize-your-health-and-its-raw/
http://www.oliveoiltimes.com/extra-virgin-olive-oil