I remember the first time I ever cooked. It was in my parents’ much smaller old house and I was 6 years old. It was a cool and cloudy autumn day and my father and I pulled some carrots from the garden. I don’t recall how I peeled and cut them them, but my dad showed me how. My mom simply steamed them and then put a little salted butter on them. We ate them with dinner and I remember vividly the excitement while waiting for them to finish and I remember how incredibly fulfilling it was to eat something I’d made.

That’s the power food has over us! A little taste or scent can release a whole torrent of memories. I thought about those carrots today as I peeled the ones I used in these pork ribs and sauerkraut. The carrots are a very small component of the dish, but the rising fragrance of the earthy carrots sent me on a one-way ticket down memory lane.

I’m not expecting you to have a full-fledged Proustian moment when you make this, but I couldn’t help it with this dish. My dad has been making these pork ribs and sauerkraut for years. It’s a standard, homespun dish typical in Eastern-Europe and even into Germany. The ribs are buried in sauerkraut, bolstered by potatoes, and roasted until the meat tenderly falls off of the bone. It’s a wonderful alternative to those thickly-sauced and glazed American BBQ style ribs.

It’s a very simple dish with a big return– tender pieces of pork, flavorful sauerkraut, and luscious potatoes all at once within grasp on the table. It’s a wonderful thing to make in autumn or winter when the ambient heat from the oven makes the house a little warmer and the idea of a big-effort meal is simply not an option.

Pork Ribs and Sauerkraut

The best thing to roast this in— and it what my father always uses– is an enamel turkey-roasting pan. It is large with tall sides and a life. If you do not have one, don’t worry– any large and tall baking dish will do, a covering of aluminum foil will substitute for a lid perfectly. This is a traditional dish of Eastern Europe and there are as many different recipes for it as there are who make it; it’s good with frozen peas stirred in, mushrooms, anything! The paprika is optional, but it does add a wonderful flavor and beautiful color.

Ingredients

  • 3-3 1/2 pound rack of pork ribs
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 stalk celery
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 tablespoon best-quality Hungarian paprika (optional)
  • 4-6 cups of low salt/sodium chicken stock
  • 22 lb. bags of sauerkraut– or, of course, 4 pounds of sauerkraut. Make sure it is an unflavored variety
  • 3 lbs. of red skinned potatoes, washed and cut into quarterssalt– as needed
  • 3 tbs. oil
  • If you want to add the second meal, we would recommend you to make homemapde pasta (check out WannaPasta.Com)

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350. Peel the carrot. Grate the carrot, celery, and onion. You can do it by hand, but I just pop them through the grating attachment on my food processor and it takes all but two minutes. Put the oil in the largest skillet or pot you have and set it over medium heat. When the oil is heated, place the rack of ribs meaty-side down. It might look a little comical with the furthest extremes sticking out of the pan if the rack is long, but what we want is as much of it crisp and golden as we can. Once the meat is nice and seared, carefully lift it out of the pan and place it in the roasting dish. Add the grated vegetables to the hot skillet and stir around to deglaze the pan.

While the pork is frying, you’ll need to rinse the sauerkraut unless you like very sour sauerkraut. I happen to enjoy the tang as does my Aunt Trish, but most people enjoy it a little milder. Simply pour all the sauerkraut into a colander you’ve set up in the sink. Rinse it under cold running water for about 10 seconds.

Try a shred of the sauerkraut

– if you’re content with the tartness, continue on

– if you would like it milder, rinse for another ten seconds. Once the pan has been deglazed, sprinkle in a tablespoon of salt and the paprika if using and stir to combine. Pour in the freshly rinsed sauerkraut and stir to ensure the the vegetable-paprika mix is evenly dispersed. try a bite of the sauerkraut

– it should be salted enough that you would eat it like that.

This recipe takes a lot of salt between the meat and the potatoes, but to avoid oversalting you must sample it at this stage. Add more salt, if needed. Heat the sauerkraut through, but do not fry it. Place half the sauerkraut in the roasting dish around the rack of ribs. Add in the potatoes around the ribs and on top of the sauerkraut. Use the rest of the sauerkraut to cover the potatoes and the ribs. Pour in the chicken stock. You should pour in just enough that the liquid level is just below the surface, but not above. Cover with a lid (or a layer of foil) and carefully (it’s heavy!) place the whole thing in the oven. Reduce the heat to 300 and let it roast for about 3-4 hours.

The meat should cook relatively quickly, but don’t be tempted to eat it until it’s tender. it’s done with a butter knife can slice through the meat of the ribs easily and a fork effortlessly remove the meat from the bone.

 

Read More

Forever in a day people are pledging harsh words of criticism against drugs such as marijuana that elude they are the source of addiction and destruction in a person’s life. I know that people can become addicted to using marijuana… BUT it is not marijuana they are addicted to. Let me explain… Tho see marijuana as the source of addiction is to miss the underlying currents that sweep someone into addictive behaviours.

 
The nature of addiction is not a problem encapsulated within the substance or activity itself, it is merely a function that springs from an individual that is trying to meet emotional needs. They are self-medicating. In its essence, the individual is using a substance to change his/her emotional state. This is usually to move away from pain and to gain pleasure… even if it’s only temporary.


There are many substances and activities that people use to the point of addiction: drugs, television, internet, food, sex, etc. In whichever way the addiction is ‘expressed’ externally (tv, sex, drugs, etc) is just a SYMPTOM of an internal problem. It is a reflection of inner needs not being met. So all of the big boys who stand up to condemn marijuana for being addictive are missing the point. People who are addicted to alcohol are called ‘alcoholics’. Is alcohol addictive? Of course not. Majority of people who drink a glass of wine regularly are not going to become addicted. It’s not the substance that forms the addiction… it is what the individual BRINGS to the substance and how the relationship between both forms. All people in addiction are living a life where certain human needs have not been met or have not been met to the extent that they need to be.

 
Family dynamics in the last century has shifted considerably. The closeness between majorities of families has been marred. An example is absent mothers or fathers unable to give to the child what it needs. The need for attention, unconditional love, time with parents, etc. is paramount for any child. This creates emotional dysfunction when it is withheld. This is not the only source of dysfunction, but it is one of the main ones.

 
Whatever the reasons for dysfunction, there is an emotional wound that forms which can lead people to become depressed, have low self-esteem, poor self-images, shame, lack or purpose, co-dependence, etc. To cure any addiction these issues mentioned need to be taken care of. If they are not then the individual will return to the behaviour of addiction, or simply swap one behaviour for another behaviour. All proper and successful addiction programs such as the 12-step programs now this.

So whats going on is that people have psychological dependency on marijuana use and marijuana use in the best dry herb vaporizer. This is when it can possibly turn into a strong addiction and color majority of their life. Because when someone is in this position they just can’t go to the movies, they have to get high then they can go to the movies. They just can’t go out to a club and dance, they have to smoke some weed before they go.They are essentially using it as a coping mechanism to get through life. As I said previously, some people use other coping mechanisms but not weed… even if they’ve smoked weed they still do not become addicted to it… they have other activities they are addicted to.

 

So instead of focusing on the outside-in, it is really an inside-out job. Many people are addicted to watching TV but there’s a TV in nearly every home in the US. Many people are addicted to alcohol but there’s bars and places to drink alcohol 24/7 all across the US. Many people are addicted to eating food excessively in a way that is harming their well-being… but junk-food is supplied with pride nation-wide.None of these substances are inherently bad in themselves, but neither is marijuana! It is time that the light of truth is finally seen by all people who consider marijuana to be ‘the’ problem of addiction when addiction ‘itself’ is the REAL PROBLEM.

Image credits: http://mrvapo.com/review/volcano-vaporizer

Read More

Contemporary wedding photographers are under pressure to capture The Big Day in all its glory on film. Many couples want pictures that are a combination of formal posed portraits and snapshots of spontaneous moments. If you are in charge of the photos, here are tips for getting the best angle, lighting, timing and making the whole day go smoothly.

Location, location, location.Ask in advance where the ceremony and reception will be taking place. If the ceremony will be in a church, contact the priest, vicar or other minister for any special rules regarding photography inside the church.

How To Take Wedding Photos

Getting the location of the main entrance, the altar and any spots relevant to the ceremony.

Are there any places you are restricted from standing or putting equipment?

Checking the location of windows and doors. You may need them for lighting .

Is flash photography allowed? Would additional lighting be allowed and are there any electrical outlets?

Is there anything you are not allowed to photograph?

Finally, ask if the church representative has any suggestions. They may have seen many wedding pictures, so you can benefit from that expertise.Ask the couple if they want to avoid having the parking lot or cemetery in the background of the photographs. Some brides mind greatly and others believe it is fine.

Take some group shots outside the church.Because everyone in the wedding party is already together, you may want to take a group shot in front of the church. Many couples prefer a shot before or after ascending the stairs going in to the church or leaving as a group. The weather is unpredictable, so getting groups shots while the weather is fair is a great idea.

Photography at the reception venue.As with the church, get the address prior to the date and visit the location. Ask the manager or caretaker for a short tour and ask the same questions as you did at the church. If possible, take pictures of important things like the wedding cake, groom’s cake and the reception tables before the guests arrive to ensure a clear shot.

Have the bride and groom select one member from each of their families to gather family members for formal events, like group shots. A photographer may not be familiar with any relatives, so this is very important. Position people with their faces away from light to reduce glare and squinting eyes. Use the surrounding details like windows and arches, to add soft light to the shot.

How To Take Wedding Photos

Informal shots of the wedding including some of the bride and groom, are often favorites afterward. Try to get pictures of the guests having fun and taking picture themselves. the trick of informal shots is simply do not let the subject know you are there. Keep an eye on the happy couple. If you can capture an intimate moment away from the crowd, you may get the best shot of The Big Day.

Whether you’re looking for well-established online advertising placement or customized solutions to specific marketing objectives, let the Hobbies Adviser Sales/Marketing team develop a strategically designed plan that will put your company top-of-mind for potential consumers.

Read More