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Cooking at Home by Cooking Together + Roasted Chicken Recipe

We are excited to launch today our Cooking Together campaign which promotes cooking at home. We will be rallying until the end of the year to get supporters for it, sharing experiences of cooking together and ways of incorporating more home cooking in our daily lives. The idea of this campaign is simple: cooking together is a way of making cooking at home a more sustainable activity. And by this we mean, a conscious activity that we can practice on a regular basis, not like a chore, but something to enjoy.

Our Story

The idea of this campaign comes from something that has worked for Matt and I since we met (even before we got married!) Sharing the activity of cooking made it something interesting to do and beyond the need of feeding ourselves. Here’s our story: we were roommates while interning at a museum about 8 years ago (that’s how we met). At the time our cooking skills were pretty basic, but the interesting thing was how different our backgrounds were. I came from living in a big city in Colombia and Matt came from living in a small town in Tennessee. I remember how cooking basic things for me like “Arroz con Pollo” (a chicken and rice dish) or staple dishes for him like Chicken Parmesan would pick our interests cooking and talking about it. While that may have been the “catch” for us to approach cooking in our lives as a couple in a different way, being able to sustain this activity on a regular basis for the last 7 years has been due to the fact that we have done it (and keep doing it) together.

“At the end of the day we think the most rewarding thing is not only to have this delicious meal in front of us that we made from scratch, is the fact that we enjoyed doing it, and that is what this campaign is all about.”

We may not cook every night together, although those are the best nights as we can enjoy it more splitting tasks and leaving room for important discussions such as to “why you should boil water in a pot with the lid on?”, or “why tossing a salad with the dressing is better than adding it later on the plate?…” but the gist is that we can count on each other for making cooking at home a regular practice. We play the game of taking turns for cooking, depending on who is the busiest, or become the masters of certain tasks (like bread making or pasta making). At the end of the day we think the most rewarding thing is not only to have this delicious meal in front of us that we made from scratch, is the fact that we enjoyed doing it, and that’s what this campaign is all about.

The Purpose

The facts and figures are out there, cooking at home while not in decline any more (the good news!) has yet a long way to go for it to contribute solving issues like obesity and malnutrition as well as making of our food system a more fair one. On the good side as well, the trend of men cooking at home is on the rise! However, one of the biggest issues seems to be cooking quick and easy meals that use a high amount of processed foods vs cooking from scratch real whole foods. And it is not an easy task. These days going to the grocery store to find real whole foods can be a challenge, trying to figure out in a nutritionist style if the ingredient your are getting was made with the real stuff… which opens the following questions:

From “Cheap Eats: How America Spends Money on Food”, theatlantic.com

How much of what we buy at the store can we and should we make ourselves at home? Should we get out of our comfort zone and shop more frequently at Farmers Markets? Should we subscribe to a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)? Should we grow a garden? Should we homestead many of the things that we consume and use at home? Well, these are all questions we should sort ourselves as we approach the food that we consume with different eyes: with the eyes of a conscious cook and not just of a food consumer. And to really commit, to really follow though with it, we say don’t do it alone! Invite your partner, your kids, your roommate. Make it an excuse to meet new people. You will be surprised with the results!

The Goal

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My mother and my sister cooking together “bollo limpio”

The main goal of this campaign is to get the conversation going about “Cooking Together“. We want to know about how this strategy is working for you (because we are sure is working for many) and we want to learn from it. Time, budget, and motivation to cook are some of the challenges and we would like to discuss about them:

  • How do you fit cooking in your busy schedule?
  • How do you manage your budget to afford real whole foods?
  • How do you motivate others at home to cook with you?

We know there are many answers to these questions, so the idea is to pose them and share your stories. We want to spread the word, get cooking, and motivate others.

Show Your Support

We invite you to join this party and take action! You can show your support to this idea by:

  • Signing a pledge on our campaign on causes.com. There you will find some simple steps to get going and keep up with the campaign progress.
  • Print and share your pledge. Here you can sign your name on a visual pledge and print it to paste it in a visible place in your kitchen.
  • Share your cooking together moments! Capture those moments when you are cooking with someone else and having fun. Tag them with #cookingtogether and tweet them @getlista. Include a caption with the name of the dish that appears in the photo, and a link (if applicable) so we can credit you. We will include these images on our Cooking Together Gallery.
  • Join the conversation. Through this blog, our social media channels, or on our campaign on causes.com. Share your story, the challenges that you face, and your successes. We will be sharing ours too!

Get Cooking

And because the best way to make something happen is by action, here’s a simple recipe we should all have under our belts: How to roast a chicken. So simple, so basic, and yet so tasty! For the best results be sure to get a fresh broiler from the Farmers Market.

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Roasted Chicken
 
This simple roast chicken will deliver a moist meat and delicious crunchy skin. You can eat it as is, serve it with pasta, used it on a stir-fry, or in just about anything!
Ingredients
  • Whole Chicken, 1 (3 lbs)
  • Salt, 1 teaspoon
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven at 450F. Prepare the chicken for roasting
  2. Pull the skin around the neck down. With your fingers find the join in the neck and cut with...

View Full Recipe with Step-by-Step Instructions at getlista.com

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Summer Flavors Every Day Meal Plan + Tortellini Recipe

Fresh from our summer garden this meal plan will make you fall in love with eggplant, interesting summer greens like lamb’s quarters and amaranth leaves, as well as, summer staples like peaches, peppers, and tomatoes. We are also including below our to-go recipe for making our own tortellini, so don’t miss it!

Meals Included in this Plan

Ricotta Tortellini with Roasted Tomatoes and Bell Pepper Sauce

Tomatoes and peppers are the staple of the summer and this recipe combines them both in a delicious roasted sauce that you can make ahead to prepare this meal in a cinch any day of the week. Fresh mixed greens are the perfect paring for soaking the delicious pasta sauce.

 

 

Prosciutto Salad with Peaches, Blue Cheese, and Herbed Crostini

Peaches and prosciutto are an excellent pair in this fresh and delicious salad that uses seasonal greens such as lamb’s quarters, amaranth leaves, mustard frisee, and baby arugula. Be sure to use fresh greens available in your locality for the best flavor.

 

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Simple Eggplant Baba Ghanoush

It’s eggplant season! And that means time for unlimited amounts of Baba Ghanoush! And while Baba Ghanoush is not a complicated dish, this recipe makes it so that you can prepare it with just a few ingredients (no tahini needed) using fresh eggplants during the summer where they are at their best.

It’s rare to hear people raving about an eggplant dish, but this is definitely one that makes the difference. For those unfamiliar with Baba Ghanoush just picture the consistency of a creamy dip with the pungent flavor of fresh garlic, notes of rich and earthy cumin, plus the sweet and smoky flavors of eggplant slowly cooked. We can assure that non-eggplant believers will convert with it (have see in it happen!) You can roast or grill the eggplants, which lets you enjoy this dish as part of a cookout, or any day of the week. We paired them with flatbreads and have it as side dish, or with a hefty summer salad for a complete meatless meal.

Eggplant Goodness

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Roasted Eggplants

We certainly don’t need to be up-sell when it comes to eating a veggie. If it comes straight from nature, is edible, and ripen we don’t argue about nutritional information. However it’s always good to know a bit more about the amazing treasures Continue reading

Seasonal Meal Plans

Announcing Seasonal Meal Plans

Seasonal Meal Plans are now available on Lista. You can now save time planning your meals and focus on getting the best ingredients from your favorite farm and cooking delicious and healthy every day!

We love planning our meals around the season because it just makes sense: you cook with the best and freshest ingredients right when nature makes them available to you. Cooking seasonally is something we really started to think about when we started receiving our local box and we have enjoyed doing it since. However we have to admit that it changed the way we think when doing our meal planning. We used to start by picking the recipes we liked or craved the most. Now it’s the reverse, we start by choosing ingredients that are in harvest and local to us, so we get the best flavors and know where they are coming from. It’s also a great way to prop up the local economy.

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Baba Ghanoush with Flatbread & Melon-Kale Salad, from “Beat the Heat” Meal Plan

What’s in a Seasonal Meal Plan?

Seasonal Meal Plans include 4 Week Night Meal Recipes. These recipes are originally created by us at Lista, inspired by the flavors of the season in combination with Continue reading

Interview with Faith Gorsky from An Edible Mosaic

An Edible Mosaic, Everyday Recipes with Extraordinary Flair

We start the month of July featuring An Edible Mosaic, a blog that gathers international recipes and american classics with an emphasis in seasonal dishes.

Faith Gorsky, author of An Edible Mosaic, shared with us her passion about food and culture and her experiences of writing about food while living in the Middle East.

Live Experiences as an Inspiration for Writing and Cooking

LIVE LISTA: Tell us bit about you.

FAITH GORSKY: My favorite thing to do is go into the kitchen hungry, open the fridge, and start creating. (And when my husband, Michael, cooks with me, it’s just icing on the cake.)

I was born, raised, and spent most of my life in Upstate New York, but I’ve also lived in Florida, Syria, Jordan, and Kuwait. I love to travel, especially to places steeped in rich culture and history. One of my favorite cities is Damascus, Syria…it’s scented of jasmine, spices, and apple tobacco, tastes sweet like toot (berry juice) and salty like bizzer (roasted seeds and nuts), and feels like another world.

I enjoy reading (cookbooks mostly), vintage shopping (especially in old markets), watching movies (of all genres), and am enamored with ancient cultures (especially Rome and Egypt).

My favorite foods are apples, grapes, spinach, and Indian butter chicken, and my vice is Swiss dark chocolate.

Photos of Faith's Trip to Damascus, Syria

Photos of Faith’s Trip to Damascus, Syria

 

One of my favorite cities is Damascus, Syria…it’s scented of jasmine, spices, and apple tobacco, tastes sweet like toot (berry juice) and salty like bizzer (roasted seeds and nuts), and feels like another world.

 

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Molokhia Waraq

L.L: How did the idea of blogging about food started?

F.G: I started my blog the day after Mother’s Day in 2009 to share the Mother’s Day meal that my family and I made for my mom. I wanted to show that someone like me – who is by no means a professional chef – can make a decent meal to share with loved Continue reading

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Addictive Crunchy Quinoa Granola Clusters

“Addictive” is really the best way to describe this granola. We can’t stop eating it! The great news is that it’s a great way to snack or even better as your breakfast.

Like many other things granola is one of those that homemade is best and it’s really not that difficult. Plus you can play with the toppings and incorporate any nuts, dry fruit (and even chocolate!) you crave or is available to you.

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2 ounce Pilloncillos. You can buy a bag of them, or buy them separate in bigger blocks.

For this recipe I used Panela syrup. Panela is unrefined whole cane sugar typical from Central and Latin American countries. You can find it at the store as “Piloncillo” which is the name it’s given in Mexico. Panela is a huge deal to me because is one of the most important products that Colombia (my home country) exports after coffee. It Continue reading

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The Big Chill: The Best Way to Cool Down this Summer in Austin, TX!

Texas is famous for its very hot summers and it’s not for granted! So to celebrate the best of the summer and chill down at the same time enter two win two tickets for the Big Chill priced $130!

big-chill-logoThe Big Chill, an event organized by the Austin Food Blogger Association gathers chilly bites from Austin’s top restaurants in the beautiful Bullock Texas State History Museum. Chefs from top Austin restaurants—including The Carillon, No Va, St. Philip, Dolce Neve, Celtic Seafare, Nada Moo, Soup Peddler, Pleasant Storage Room, Swift’s Attic, Thai Fresh, Trace at the W, and Noble Sandwich Co.—will be creating special menu items for the event, with drink stations sponsored by Good Pop and Chameleon Coffee.

Proceeds from the event will benefit Meals on Wheels and More, a 501(c)3 nonprofit. Meals on Wheels and More has served the Austin area for 42 years, nourishing and enriching the lives of people in need through meal delivery and other programs that promote independent living.

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Connecting Through Food with Judith Fein

A few weeks ago we had the pleasure to chat with Judith Fein, travel journalist and author of the book “The Spoon From Minkowitz, A Bittersweet Roots Journey to Ancestral Lands” about her book and how food has been a constant in her work.

Finding Her Past, An Early Obsession

Since a child, Judith Fein started wondering from her grandmother’s kitchen about her ancestors. She remembers her grandmother cooking a chicken soup and sharing the food she grew up with and knew by heart so well. But she also remembers that she wouldn’t share any information about her past. This puzzled the author who grew obsessed with the idea of learning more about it. As she put it herself “my whole life turned into a detective novel, trying to track down the village, and a finally I went there.” In Continue reading