Getting to know your food the smart, simple way with the Smart Simple Gourmet

Wouldn’t it be great if you could know the chef of each of your meals?  Wouldn’t it also be great if that chef knew where every ingredient came from and how the farmers grow and raise all ingredients in each of your meals?  This is exactly how Linda, owner and operator of The Smart Simple Gourmet thinks the masses should eat.  The Smart Simple Gourmet, purveyor of home cooked meals that are “real food” sets up shop at local Los Angeles farmers markets for shoppers to sample her fare.

How does one get into the business of providing home cooked food for the busy masses?

Sowing the seeds of love

When I checked my email this morning, the first article that appeared in my inbox was as follows:

Consolidation of seed companies leading to corporate domination of world food supply.

Though refreshing not to hear about the soap opera going on in DC known as the “Debt Ceiling”, this seems to be just as alarming, if not more.  Basically Monsanto, Dow Industries and other large corporations are buying out all of the smaller seed companies.  This is making it even more difficult for small farmers to survive as the seed industry is becoming a monopoly. 

Shaving Sense/Cents: Straight Razors

By GreenUp! Community Blogger – Tice

My how the timing worked out perfectly for this entry!  Now that we’ve covered some of the tools of the trade for ‘wet shaving,’ we are now going to up the ante and talk about the most ‘green’ shave of them all, straight razor (SR) shaving!  Here is a link that describes a straight razor in detail.  Yesterday, I received 3 shave-ready blades in the mail, all ready to carve up my face!  I received 2 of them, a Bartmann and a Trusteel from Larry Andreassen of the Whipped Dog.  I paid him to hone (sharpen) them for me, and he offers a great price and super service for $13 per blade.  He also sells shave-ready blades.  The other was a Columbia shave ready SR I purchased for $15.00 (+$2.00 shipping) from the Straight Razor Place classifieds.  I decided to use the Columbia 6/8 razor, and despite the unknown, everything went well!  In fact, I believed even before I got my first straight razor that I was going to enjoy it, and I did!  It went a little something like this…

Straight Razor is the greenest, most sustainable form of shavingStraight Razor is the greenest, most sustainable form of shaving

Shaving Sense/Scents: Brushes, Mugs, Soaps, Creams and Gels, Oh My!

By GreenUp! Community Blogger – Tice

Following my previous post on Double Edge Safety Razors, we’re now going to talk about how to get a great shave using the time honored (yet long unadvertised) tradition of using a shaving brush and mug.  Many years ago as a young kid and having divorced parents, I would shop with one parent to buy gifts for the other.  While I don’t know my exact age at the time, my mom and I went and bought my dad a shaving mug, brush, and soap for Christmas one year.  I never thought about it in my adult years until I discovered the information I recently learned that I’ve been sharing with you.  I even found the 1927 Mercedes mug that I bought for him on a few online stores that sell vintage items!  I remember my dad used that combination for many years because he enjoyed it so much.  I guess years of branding and heavy advertising for current products kept me from using the same method, plus I’m sure I wouldn’t have been patient enough to take the time to do it right.  Now that I have made the switch, I will never go back to lathering canned chemical goo by hand to my face!

Shaving Sense/Cents: Double Edge Safety Razors

By GreenUp! Community Blogger – Tice

The first safety razor was invented in the late 18th century, but to spare you from the complete history of them, we’re going to jump forward to the most popular safety razor created by King Camp Gillette.  Gillette saw the money making value in selling products that could be used a few times and disposed of, so he refined the safety razor design at the turn of the 20th century.  In addition to his razor design, he created thin, inexpensive, disposable blades of stamped steel.  Originally produced of carbon steel, the razors rusted rather quickly, so consumers went through them just as fast.  When an English company produced stainless blades of the same design, they could be used until they were dull, so Gillette was forced to follow suit to remain competitive.

Shave Sense/Cents

By GreenUp! Community Blogger – Tice

If you’re like me, you’re frustrated that disposable razor cartridges are expensive, wasteful, and shaving is much more of a ‘chore’ than a pleasurable experience.  We do it because we have to, not necessarily because we want to.  My goal is to provide a brief education on your options, improve your overall shaving experience, and show you how shaving can be green and save you green(backs) at the same time.

My story started over a month ago when I was going through some boxes in the garage.

Can you handle the heat in your mouth? Try this home-made Korean Kimchi recipe and find out.

Ingredients cut upKimchi is a popular side dish lately.  From Kimchi burritos and tacos aboard food trucks to members of the GreenUp! Community recommending a local farmer’s market favorite, Dave’s Gourmet Korean.  Kimchi should be spicy, which I welcome because spicy foods can help speed up metabolism.  It is interesting to see how some people react to spicy foods.  In fact, GreenUp! Community member Alan always sweats profusely on the forehead when eating his own homemade Kimchi.

Can you handle the heat?  Use Alan’s recipe to make your own home-made Korean Kimchi  and lets see how you do.

Made lemonade out of Carmageddon

Empty 405 looking North at Sunset bridgeLet me say upfront that I apologize for talking about this subject so much.   Cars and driving are two subjects dear to my heart and traffic is one of my least favorite attributes of Los Angeles.  I know Carmageddon didn’t come true and was over-hyped but it actually made a difference.  This city felt like a real city.  The public transportation could actually move freely through this part of the city.  I noticed more people taking to their bikes and the sidewalks.  I was able to ride my bike on Wilshire between the Veterans Affairs West Los Angeles Facility, which has a beautiful park setting, to Bundy Dr during rush hour on Friday.  That was my first indication that this weekend was not going to be a nightmare as it was marketed to be.

Sleeping with the Enemy: Flame Retardants

By GreenUp! Community Blogger: Dori

Federal law FR1633 requires that all mattresses sold in the U.S. include flame retardants. Most companies use Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) as the flame retardant in their mattresses.

According to the Environmental Working Group, PBDE exposure through inhalation/ingestion of fumes and small particles is linked to numerous health problems: decreased development of reproductive systems in children, deficits in motor skills, learning, memory and hearing, as well as changes in behavior.