Earth Day: Why Organic, Local, Wild Fish and Loose Leaf Tea…

Monkey Picked White TeaA glance in my refrigerator revealed a few veggies I bought at the farmer’s market this weekend. After much consideration, I finally convinced myself to sauté the kale that was threatening to wilt with mushrooms in jeopardy of getting old and serve it with the wild fresh cod I just bought. Dinner, a Coconut Curried Cod Infused with MONKEY-PICKED WHITE TEA served with Kale & Mushrooms sautéed in a sweet and spicy MONKEY-PICKED WHITE TEA sauce, turned out simply tea-licious but what really made me appreciate the meal on a higher level was honoring the way all the ingredients made their way into my tummy. With Earth Day right around the corner, I decided to reassess the fundamental reasons why, for the past couple of years, my husband and I decided to make it point to wild fish, buy local and organic veggies and loose leaf tea.

Coconut Curried Cod Infused with MONKEY-PICKED WHITE TEA served with Kale & Mushrooms sautéed in a sweet and spicy MONKEY-PICKED WHITE TEA-sauce…

Ingredients: Coconut Curried Cod Infused with MONKEY-PICKED WHITE TEA
• 1 ½ lb cod, wild
• 2 stalks lemon grass
• 1 cup coconut milk
• 1 tsp green curry paste
• 1 tsp ginger, peeled & minced
• 1 TBS fish sauce
• 2 TBS mirin
• 1-2 TBS crushed red pepper, depending on how spicy you want
• ½ tsp nutmeg
• 1 ½ TBS brown sugar
• 1 tsp corn starch
• 3 TBS Organic & Fair Trade MONKEY-PICKED WHITE TEA loose tea, yielding 2 cups of *white tea concentrate*, divided (1 cup for fish and 1 cup for kale)
*How to make White Tea Concentrate: Bring 5 oz water to a boil and let cool for 4 minutes, which will bring water to 160°, a good temperature to steep white tea. Place 3 heaping TBS of tea in a 16 oz measuring cup. Pour 8 oz hot water over tea leaves and steep for 3 minutes. Strain tea leaves.*
**Optional: Reserve tea leaves to make iced or hot tea.**

Preparation: Fish
1. Preheat oven to 375°
2. In a mixing bowl, place coconut milk, curry paste, ginger, fish sauce, mirin, red pepper, nutmeg, brown sugar, cornstarch and 1 cup white tea concentrate. Whisk to evenly combine.
3. Place the cod and lemon grass in a 9 X 11 pan; season both sides of fish with salt and pepper. Pour coconut curried tea mixture over fish and cover with tin foil. Place in over and cook for 10-15 minutes. Take out of oven and keep tin foil on for another 5 minutes.

Ingredients: Kale & Mushrooms sautéed in a sweet and spicy MONKEY-PICKED WHITE TEA-sauce
• 1 cup reserved white tea concentrate, see cod recipe
• 1-2 tsp cayenne pepper, depending on how spicy you want
• 1 ½ TBS agave
• 1 lemon, zest and juice
• salt and pepper to taste
• 1 TBS coconut oil
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 1 red onion, sliced
• 1 pablano pepper, chopped
• 1 lb any type mushrooms, sliced
• 1 bunch kale, roughly chopped

Preparation: Kale & Mushrooms
1. In a mixing bowl, whisk white tea concentrate, cayenne pepper, agave, lemon (zest and juice), salt and pepper. Reserve.
2. In a large wok, melt coconut oil over medium heat. Add garlic and onions and sauté until translucent and releasing sensational aromas, about 3-4 minutes. Add pablanos and let cook until soften, about 3-4 minutes. Add kale and mushrooms to top, without mixing coat kale and mushrooms with white tea-sauce and cover to allow steam to occur, about 5 minutes. Uncover and mix kale and mushrooms with onions and pablanos. Cook, tossing often, until kale and mushrooms soften, another 3-4 minutes.

Although I might have spend a little more money to buy local, organic, wild and loose, nothing can compare to the feeling knowing that I am healthier, happier and eco-friendlier…priceless…

How are you doing your part to vote with your dollars & sense?

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