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Field Peas with Ham

Field Peas with Ham - Little Family Adventure - Simple Field Peas cooked with Ham. It's Southern Comfort at its best. #glutenfree #paleo #cleaneating

This winter, I picked up a few things from local producers, Cattle Tracks and Rowdy Stickhorse Wild Acres. Both are family farms here in Oklahoma. I wanted to introduce you to these great local farms and share with you a tasty dish I made with their products. I created Field Peas with Ham with Dried Field Peas from Cattle Tracks and Ham Hocks from Rowdy Stickhorse. Simple, tasty, and great for this winter that just won’t end.

Cattle Tracks/John’s Farm 

A family owned farm in Fairview, Oklahoma. They are Certified organic, non-GMO project verified, Animal Welfare Approved farm. They offer beef, wheat, flour, seasonings, and beef jerky. They have numerous retail locations around the state. I order their products through both the Oklahoma Food Co0op and at the OSU-OKC Farmers Market on the 1st Saturday of the month. 

Rowdy Stickhorse Wild Acres

A certified naturally grown family farm located outside of Covington Oklahoma. They offer Beef, Pork, Lamb, Goat, Eggs, Bird Feed, Goats milk herbal products (Soaps, Creams, and Laundry Powder, etc.) I have also ordered from them through the Oklahoma Food Co-op and the Oklahoma Farm to Fork Market truck. This truck is an old yellow school bus that travels the state of Oklahoma (on a schedule).  A group of Oklahoma farmers gathers together to bring you farm fresh, clean food directly form theirs farms to you. You can find everything from local meat, cheese, bakery items, fruits, vegetables, canned goods, and household items like laundry soap with goat’s milk. I usually pick up at Mercy’s Heart Hospital North on Memorial in Oklahoma City Thursday afternoons.

Cooking Peas and Beans


The field peas from Cattle Tracks/John’s Farm were a combination of organic Black-eyes, Victors, Chinese Reds, Red Rippers. With any dried bean or pea, soaking overnight in water is the preferred method to remove make them easier to digest . You could also do the rapid soak method of bringing the peas to a rapid boil for 3 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and let stand for 1 hour. 

Dried peas and beans can cause some to get a little gassy. I add a 2″ x 2″ square of dried kelp (seaweed) to all my beans and peas to help eliminate the “toot”. It doesn’t add any flavor to the dish and is removed before serving. You can pick it up at most large grocery stores or any Asian market. I get mine at Cao Nguyen on Military and NW 26th in Oklahoma City.

This dish, Field Peas with Ham is a simple and delicious dish I know you are goingto enjoy. Serve it with cornbread, corn tortillas, or try something different with my Irish Soda Bread.

Field Peas with Ham 

1 pound dried peas
3 cups chicken broth + water to cover peas
1 ham bone or 2 ham hocks
2 Tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro or 1 Tablespoon dried cilantro
1/2 medium onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon cumin
2″x 2″ piece of dried kelp, optional

Garnish: freshly chopped cilantro, optional

Directions:

  1. Soak peas overnight.
  2. Drain peas and place them in a large Dutch oven. Add fresh water to cover them by 2″.
  3. Add all remaining ingredients
  4. Bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer, cover, and cook for 1 hour.
  5. Remove ham bone or ham hocks, kelp, and bay leaf. 
  6. Once ham has cooled enough to work with, remove the meat and return to the peas.
  7. Spoon peas into individual serving bowls. Garnish with chopped cilantro if desired and serve.

Have you purchased anything from either of these two Oklahoma farms? What have you enjoyed?

 

For more great recipes and family related articles, be sure to check out my website, Little Family Adventure.

Review: Theraganics

Theraganics is a unique all natural soap shop in Tulsa. They feature a lot of great all natural products, things like soap, shampoo bars, bath bombs, lotion, and more. They use essential oils for the scents, which is a lot safer and more natural than a lot of other fragrances you will see in body products. And the best part? It’s a locally owned company, selling locally made products!

Stephanie Roudabush, the co-owner of Theraganics, told Green Oklahoma why she started Theraganics


“I suffered with terrible acne for over 15 years. I went to the dermatologist several times and used just about every prescription and over-the-counter treatment out there just short of signing the waiver to be put on Accutane. I had read about all the possible side effects, including deformities in children and thought to myself there had to be a better way. I started researching natural skin products and formulating my own in the kitchen. After a few months my skin had made a complete turnaround. I started sharing my soap and other products with family and friends who also had great results. I was inspired to share it with everyone by starting my own company to help people suffering from skin ailments, and showing them how simple can be effective, safe, and luxurious at the same time.”

Theraganics sent over a few things for me to try out and they were all great. The first item I tried was the bath bomb. The bath bomb is much larger than most of the bath bombs I’ve used, it lasted a really long time. Bath bombs are a lot of fun for kids and since these use safe and natural ingredients you can feel safe using them with your kids. Adults will love them as well!

I also tried some of Theraganics‘ shea butter cream and it’s amazing. It’s thick and creamy and ultra moisturizing. The one I tried was unscented which is nice for men, kids, and anyone sensitive to scents. It’s also good if you I using another scented item and don’t want your moisturizer to over power it.

My favorite item was the Lavender Fields soap. I had it sitting in my living room for a couple of days and it made the room smell amazing. It was hard to believe a bar of soap could give off so much of a lovely scent. I almost hated to use it because I liked how it was making the house smell. It is a nice soap, it lathers nicely, doesn’t leave a film and it leaves your skin feeling soft. And even though the bar has a nice strong scent the smell left on you is not over powering at all.

Overall I found Theraganics‘ products to be nice, safe, and high quality products. They are a company Oklahoma can be proud of! You can find their products in Tulsa at The Farm Shopping Center or on their website. You are sure to love what they have to offer.

Disclaimer: Theraganics provided the items for review but did not pay for the review. All views stated in this review are honest. Click to see our full disclosure policy.


About the Author


Lisa Sharp is passionate about green living, organic food, animals, and natural medicine. She is an environmental activist, green living expert, and freelance writer. In addition to being the founder and editor of Green Oklahoma, Lisa has a green living blog, Retro Housewife Goes Green. You can follow Lisa on twitter @Retrohousewife5 and Facebook.

 


New Eco-Friendly Restaurant Opens in Norman

Norman has a new eco-friendly restaurant to try out. Local opened earlier this month and is located in the Normandy Creek Shopping Center at NW 24th and Main. Local is a casual dinning restaurant that follows the farm to fork concept.

Local focuses on locally sourced, sustainable and creative American food. They feature a seasonal menu, which includes grass-fed meats and specials created with fresh, local produce.

Local not only has great food but also has retail space which features complete take-away meals, local products, and more. And if that’s not enough they also have a children’s center called “Localville.” Localville is great for families. Local know kids often eat differently and faster than adults so kids can go to Localville to eat, watch movies, read, and play!


“We are busy people,” states owner Melissa Scaramucci.  “Sometimes we want to just pick up something that is fresh and nutritious, so we created a take-away retail space.  Sometimes we wish we could sit down with our friends or husbands without having the expense of a sitter, so we created LOCALVILLE for the kids.  But mostly, we love sustainable, locally sourced, delicious food, which is why we hired Ryan Parrott.  This has been our dream.  And now we’re excited this dream is our reality.”

If you are looking for a new restaurant to try in Norman be sure to head over to Local. You can learn more about Local on their website, Twitter, Facebook,  and YouTube.

 


About the Author


Lisa Sharp is passionate about green living, organic food, animals, and natural medicine. She is an environmental activist, green living expert, and freelance writer. In addition to being the founder and editor of Green Oklahoma, Lisa has a green living blog, Retro Housewife Goes Green. You can follow Lisa on twitter @Retrohousewife5 and Facebook.

 

 

 

Breaking News: Evacuation Advisory for Medford Due to Gas Leak

Gas has been leaking from the ONEOK plant in Medford since Wednesday night. The spill started as a saltwater spill from a storage well. The saltwater, also known as brine, turns into propane gas vapors. These fumes are flammable and are now blowing into Medford.

According to the American Red Cross of Central Oklahoma, the city of Medford will be issuing an evacuation advisory at 3 p.m. Citizens in and around Medford should use caution and be prepared to evacuate. A shelter will be available at the old Wakita school in Wakita.

For up-to-date info follow the American Red Cross of Central Oklahoma on Twitter and keep an eye on local news.


Holiday Happenings at the OKC Zoo

The Oklahoma City Zoo (OKC Zoo) has many great holiday events going on this month. The OKC Zoo is a wonderful place for some family fun this winter and it just got even better, every Monday in December, January, and February admission to the Zoo is free! This is a great way to take advantage of all of the mild winter days we have been having.

On Saturday, December 10th from 9 to 11:30 a.m., you can take advantage of another great event at the Zoo, the Wreath Making Class. You will learn to create a holiday wreath using plants grown on Zoo grounds. This event is for ages 16 and up and the cost is $20 for members and $25 for non-members. You do need to enroll for this event.

If you are looking for something to do with younger kids be sure to go to the Zoo on Monday, December 12 from 11 a.m. to noon. Santa will be stopping by to deliver holiday goodies to his animal friends. Guest will also be able to enjoy hot chocolate and doughnuts, while supplies last. This activity is free and doesn’t require a reservation.


On December 21st from 9 a.m. to noon kids ages 6-12 yeas can come to the Zoo to make tasty presents for their pets and shelter animals. The cost is $20 for members and $25 for non-members and you need to enroll. For more information or to enroll for this class and/or the wreath making class, call (405) 425-0218 or visit www.okczooed.com.

Another great thing going on at the Zoo right now is the Wild Wish Tree. With the Wild Wish Tree you can help your favorite animal friends at the zoo. At the ZooFriends office there is a tree decorated with ornaments bearing descriptions of the items the Zoo residents need. There is a wide range for price, they start at just under $1. Some of the items include:

  • Paper lunch sacks for raccoons and Children’s Zoo animals ($3 at area stores, multiple bags needed.)
  • Un-popped popcorn for birds and primates ($2 at grocery stores, unlimited quantities needed)
  • Perfume or cologne for cats, giraffes, primates, zebra, bears and okapi ($5 at grocery and drug stores,unlimited quantities)
  • Puppy pools for raptors ($10 at pet stores)
  • Litter boxes for owls ($5 at area stores, 3 needed)
  • Specialty toys like boomer balls for elephants, rhinos, pygmy hippos, and golden lion tamarins (range from $7 to $365 at www.boomerball.com)
  • Gift cards for every department from stores like Home Depot, Lowes, WalMart, Target and Petsmart in any denomination (unlimited quantities).

The complete list can be found by clicking here. The presents may be dropped off during regular business hours, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Donations will be accepted through December 31st, 2011. For more information call (405) 425-0262.

If you are looking for gifts for your human friends and family be sure to check out the Zoo’s Safari Gift Shop, which even includes some great eco-friendly gifts. ZooFriends will get a 25% discount (on non-sale items) at the Zoo’s Safari Gift Shop from December 1st through 31st.

Another eco-friendly gift is a ZooFriends membership. ZooFriends receive:

  • Unlimited Zoo admission for one year
  • Discounted membership to nationwide zoos
  • Members ONLY entrance
  • Quarterly members-only newsletter, ZooSounds
  • 10% discount at Zoo gift shop and concessions
  • 10% discount on Zoo Education classes
  • 25% discount to Zoo Buddy Shop
  • Exclusive ZooFriends “Capture the Wild” calendar
  • Invitations to Family Fun Night and special events

Renew before January will receive $5 off any gift, new or renewal membership purchased now through December 31st. (Excludes minor and adult membership levels).

For more news and events from the Oklahoma City Zoo be sure to visit their website www.okczoo.com.

 


About the Author

 

Lisa Sharp is passionate about green living, organic food, animals, and natural medicine. She is an environmental activist, green living expert, and consultant. In addition to being the founder and editor of Green Oklahoma, Lisa has a green living blog, Retro Housewife Goes Green. You can follow Lisa on twitter @Retrohousewife5 and Facebook.

 

 

Record Breaking Weather and Climate Change

Oklahoma’s record breaking 5.6 earthquake on Saturday is not the only record breaking weather event to take place in the state this year. We have a had a record drought, broke the state record for most snow to fall in 24 hoursbroke the record for coldest day, had the warmest July on record for the whole U.S., record windspeedrecord wildfires, and more.

With all of these events happening this year, Oklahoman’s are left wondering what is causing all of this extreme weather? Some scientist have linked these kinds of weather events to climate change.

“All weather events are now influenced by climate change because all weather now develops in a different environment than before. While natural variability continues to play a key role in extreme weather, climate change has shifted the odds and changed the natural limits, making certain types of extreme weather more frequent and more intense. The kinds of extreme weather events that would be expected to occur more often in a warming world are indeed increasing.”- Current Extreme Weather & Climate Change


This video does a great job of explaining what’s going on with our weather and how climate change is effecting it.

The Current Extreme Weather & Climate Change paints a pretty serious picture of what these extreme weather events can do to the human population.

“Changes in extreme weather threaten human health as well as prosperity. Many societies have taken measures to cope with historical weather extremes, but new, more intense extremes have the potential to overwhelm existing human systems and structures.18 More frequent and more severe extreme weather events are more likely to destabilize ecosystems and cripple essential components of human livelihood, such as food production, transportation infrastructure, and water management. Death, disease, displacement, and economic hardship may follow, as we have seen with recent hurricanes, floods, heat waves, and droughts.”- Current Extreme Weather & Climate Change

As it seems extreme weather will become more common, we should all be sure to stay prepared for possible natural disasters. Most Oklahoman’s have grown up being told to stay prepared for tornadoes but now we should add earthquakes, floods and other disasters to our lists. Knowing what to do and being prepared is the best way to save lives. You can learn more about preparing for natural disasters on the CDC’s website.


About the Author


Lisa Sharp is passionate about green living, organic food, animals, and natural medicine. She is an environmental activist, green living expert, and consultant. In addition to being the founder and editor of Green Oklahoma, Lisa has a green living blog, Retro Housewife Goes Green. You can follow Lisa on twitter @Retrohousewife5 and Facebook.

Photo credit: eschipul

Oklahoma’s Energy Future Forum

Saturday, October 29, the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign hosted the Oklahoma’s Energy Future Forum at the Oklahoma State University Campus in Oklahoma City.   There were 75 guests in attendance at the forum to learn about and discuss the opportunities and resources available in Oklahoma to develop a statewide energy plan that will create jobs, clean up the environment, and protect the health of Oklahoma residents.

Mary Anne Hitt, National Director of Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign, was the keynote speaker of the forum and kicked off the event by introducing the Beyond Coal Campaign and addressing the many  problems associated with the dirty energy source.  Hitt discussed that in order to be successful and effective in moving toward a clean energy future, action must happen at the state level.  She said, “There are a few states that can be massive clean energy leaders and Oklahoma is one of them.”

Following Mary Ann Hitt’s speech was a panel of other energy experts that expressed their thoughts and ideas about the future of energy production in Oklahoma.  The panel included Michael Ming, Oklahoma Secretary of Energy, Jim Roth, attorney with Phillips Murrah Law Firm, Rob Janssen with Kelson Energy, Chris Knapp with Apex Wind Energy, Phillip Teel with Clean Line Energy Partners..  Michael Ming was the first panelist to speak and he started off with a thought provoking analogy, which had the audience look back on the progress, or lack thereof in energy production.  This analogy illustrated what would happen if Benjamin Franklin and Alexander Graham Bell were to come back and see their inventions in their present day form.  If Bell were to see our cell phones, many of which resemble mini-computers, he would probably have no idea what it was or even that it had developed from his original invention.  On the other hand, Franklin would easily be able to recognize our modern day electricity because it has hardly changed from his original invention.


The common theme amongst many of the panelists was that Oklahoma has the ability to become the leader in the movement towards cleaner energy.  Oklahoma has long been a leader in energy and has the resources necessary to move away from a dependence on coal fired power plants.  Jim Roth stated in reference to wind and natural gas “when it comes to new sources of energy, we should use our native blessings.”  Whether or not you think wind is a blessing, it is a sure fact that Oklahoma has enough of it that can and should be used to our advantage.

After the panel concluded, there was time for questions and discussion with the audience.  Participants broke for lunch provided by the Sierra Club and continued conversation about the energy future of Oklahoma. Following lunch, the attendees relocated to two smaller breakout sessions.  One group discussed clean energy policies while the other discussed the grassroots movement to transition away from coal and what they thought the campaign should do in order inform others about the problems and dangers of coal powered energy.  The clean energy policy discussion was led by Bud Scott with Oklahoma Progress, PLLC and Montelle Clark with the Oklahoma Sustainability Network.  The main topics discussed were incentives and tax exemptions for individuals or companies that use clean energy.  The group also covered ways of lowering individuals’ consumption levels, including in-home displayed monitoring and pre-paid metering.  The main consensus in the other group, which focused more on achieving campaign goals rather than policy, was that in order for more people to get involved, there needs to be a greater awareness of the problems and dangers of dirty energy.  One way that the Beyond Coal Campaign is attempting to do this is by encouraging people to host mercury teach-ins for their friends and family.   If you want to find out how to host one of these teach-ins email whitney.pearson@sierraclub.org

Although Oklahoma’s Energy Future Forum took place early Saturday morning, there were still 75 dedicated individuals including public officials, energy experts, industry representatives, advocates, and interested Oklahomans eager to gather in order to learn about and discuss the solutions of moving Oklahoma beyond coal toward a clean energy future.  This forum was one of many exhibits of the continuously growing popularity of the topic of future energy production in the state.  The Governor’s Energy Conference is a similar event that will be held Wednesday November 9, 2011 at the Cox Business Center in downtown Oklahoma City.  These discussions are timely as the Environmental Protection Agency will be finalizing two new regulations by the end of the year (a regional haze plan and a mercury and air toxics safeguard) that will require utilities to decide whether to invest in cleaning up their coal plants or retiring them.

 


About the Author

Laura Tucker is a human relations student at the University of Oklahoma and an intern for the Sierra Club.

Oklahoma Rocked by Record Setting Earthquake

Saturday night Oklahoma set a new state earthquake record, 5.6. This earthquake came after a 4.7 earthquake, early Saturday morning. Oklahomans aren’t used to earthquakes and many were confused about what was going on. Some people thought there was an explosion, others figured it out but were unsure what to do during the more than a minute of shaking.

Oklahoma typically has around 50 earthquakes each year but as of 2009 the number started to greatly increase. Last year over 1,000 earthquakes shook Oklahoma. Most of the earthquakes have been small with the 5.6 being the largest in state history. The earthquake was felt all over the state and even as far away as Illinois and Wisconsin.

With the big increase of earthquakes in Oklahoma, many are now questioning why and one hypothesis is that hydraulic fracturing (fracking). Arkansas is also studying this theory after having a major earthquake swarm in part of northern Arkansas.


A study on fracking done by the Oklahoma Geological Survey (OGS) this past year had this to say about an earthquake swarm in Oklahoma near a fracking site, “the strong correlation in time and space as well as a reasonable fit to a physical model suggest that there is a possibility these earthquakes were induced by hydraulic-­?fracturing.” It goes on to say that is hard to say with a “high degree of certainty” if the earthquakes are being caused by nature or fracting. More studies will need to be done to know what is going on for sure.

Oklahoman’s may continue to feel aftershocks from the 5.6 earthquake for the next couple of months. Oklahoman’s should learn how to be prepared for earthquakes as the number of earthquakes is increasing. Also, it’s suggested that Oklahoman’s check to see if their insurance covers earthquake.

 


About the Author


Lisa Sharp is passionate about green living, organic food, animals, and natural medicine. She is an environmental activist, green living expert, and consultant. In addition to being the founder and editor of Green Oklahoma, Lisa has a green living blog, Retro Housewife Goes Green. You can follow Lisa on twitter @Retrohousewife5 and Facebook.

 

Map Credit: U.S. Geological Survey
Department of the Interior/USGS

A Chance to Speak Up

Many Oklahoman’s are concerned about the prospect of the TransCanada Keystone XL tar sands pipeline coming to Oklahoma. Landowners are upset at the prospects of eminent domain being used by a foreign company, and they are the only ones upset, environmentalist are also concerned about the environmental impacts the pipeline will have.

One major concern for Oklahoman’s is that the proposed route for the pipeline crosses the Ogallala Aquifer, which provides drinking water for people in eight states, including Oklahoma. It also provides as much as 30% of the nation’s ground water used for irrigation.

Not all Oklahoman’s are against the pipeline though, Oklahoma’s Attorney General Scott Pruitt wrote a letter to the Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to show his support for the pipeline.


“As Oklahoma Attorney General, I write to express my support for the TransCanada Keystone XL Pipeline (Keystone XL) project. In addition to the obvious national security and economic benefits of the pipeline, Oklahoma has a unique interest in the completion of the Keystone XL stemming from the ongoing glut of crude oil at the Cushing Hub. The glut has contributed to the depressed prices of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude and negatively impacted Oklahoma producers,” Scott Pruitt said.

However, Pruitt doesn’t address the landowner’s concerns or those of environmental groups. The Keystone 1, TransCanada’s last pipeline in the US, was predicted to have a leak once every seven years but has had 12 leaks in the first year. That’s more than any other first-year pipeline in U.S. history. The risks with spills from the pipeline are also increased due to diluted bitumen carried in the pipeline, it’s a highly corrosive and acidic material sometimes called DilBit. It’s a mixture of raw bitumen and volatile natural gas liquid condensate. Bitumen often contains toxins such as chromium, mercury, arsenic, and lead.

All concerned Oklahoman’s will have the chance to speak out against the pipeline tomorrow at a public hearing hosted by the U.S. Department of State. Each citizen will have 3 minutes to voice their concerns. The hearing will take at Reed Center Exhibition Hall, 5800 Will Rogers Road in Midwest City, from 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Those that are unable to attend the meeting but would still like to have their concerns heard may contact Whitney Pearson with the Sierra Club with a short paragraph answering the following question, “is this pipeline in our national interest?”

 


About the Author


Lisa Sharp is passionate about green living, organic food, animals, and natural medicine. She is an environmental activist, green living expert, and consultant. In addition to being the founder and editor of Green Oklahoma, Lisa has a green living blog, Retro Housewife Goes Green. You can follow Lisa on twitter @Retrohousewife5 and Facebook.


 

Photo Credit: Natural Resources Defense Council

 

Saving on Your Electric Bill

The record heat has Oklahomans dreading their next electric bills. The increased energy use is also putting a strain on the grid, which can cause blackouts. Thankfully we have some tips to help you save energy.

Keep your windows covered.

Closing your blinds and curtains can help keep the sun from shining in and heating up your home.


Seal up your home.

Older windows and doors can let your cool air out of your home, you can find DYI seals at your local hardware stores to help keep the air inside.

Turn the thermostat up when away.

Turning up your thermostat a degree or two when away from the home can help save you money. You don’t want to go much higher than that though because it can be hard for the a/c to get caught up when you do get home.

Use fans.

Using fans can help keep your home cool and put less strain on your a/c. Look for energy effect fans when buying them to keep from adding energy costs and be sure to turn them off when you leave the room.

Avoid the oven.

Using your oven can heat your home up, making your a/c work harder. Try and eat more cold meals, especially during the hottest part of the day. When you do need to warm meals use the stovetop or a toaster oven. Also keeping pots closed on the stove helps keep the heat in the pot and not in your house.

Unplug unused electronics.

Electronics can use what is called vampire energy, even when not in use. Be sure to unplug any electronics you aren’t using or plug them into power stripes and turn the power strip off when done.

Use less energy during peak hours.

Peak energy use hours are 2 p.m.-7 p.m., during this time avoid extra energy use. This is also the peak water use time so avoid extra water use as well.

Switch to energy efficient light bulbs.

Replacing your light bulbs with CFLs or LEDs can help save energy and they also put off less heat, keeping your home cooler.

These are just a few ways you can help Oklahoma save energy and save money on your electric bill. If you have any tips we would love to hear them, just post in the comments below.

Photo Credits: kenteegardin


About the Author

Lisa Sharp is passionate about green living, organic food, animals, and natural medicine. She is an environmental activist, green living expert, and consultant. In addition to being the founder and editor of Green Oklahoma, Lisa has a green living blog, Retro Housewife Goes Green. You can follow Lisa on twitter @Retrohousewife5 and Facebook.