Harvest: Finding Time to Gather

“They have the hue and beauty of all these things under the twilight of Lórien that we love; for we put the thought of all that we love into all that we make”
– J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring 

While having time and the resources to focus on food and health is great, realistically it can be a persistent challenge. A multitude of ingredients, techniques, and a whole bunch of time is needed to successfully pull it off. For me, the most difficult thing to acquire – time.

I just spent the first six hours of my day learning different placements of the tongue for various vowels, Dadaism in a socio-historical-theatrical context, and rehearsing fight choreography. I’m officially on break and no longer thinking about school – the only thing on my mind: lunch.

I have ten minutes to walk back to my locker, five minutes to get settled, five minutes to heat everything up, twenty minutes to eat at my leisure, and of course – ten minutes to clean up and arrive at my movement class.

I’m reminded of the saying, “Winter doesn’t start until you cry a little bit in the morning”. Apparently winter has started a month early. I got no rest from my sleep – because my dreams were filled with Aristophanes’ Lysistrata, George Bernard Shaw monologues, Rapier and Dagger sequences, and the stress of inevitably needing to shovel the ever-growing amount of snow on the sidewalk. I also should mention – I trek to school in the dark, spend my waking hours under fluorescent lights, and I trek back home in the dark. Where is the sun? Where is the rest? Where is the hope?

My lunch and my Harvest: Sweet potato mash, pork-stew and third wave coffee. But that’s just food, right? What’s so rad about stew, mashed tubers and coffee? Great question rhetorical Hunter – what’s rad is that I have control.

Through the choice over food, time, and the planning of these things – especially in a time where I feel I have no control – I get my second wind. I’m finding more rejuvenation when I return to work, than if I were to wolf down food while memorizing a glossary of stage fighting terminology.

This fits into my ever-changing personal philosophy of constantly trying to enjoy everything I do. I love theatre, family and friends and these areas of my life deserve focus, generosity, and real engagement – why would I undermine this? If I am sick, hungry, or exhausted I cannot treat my what I care about with the respect it deserves. This grounds who I am as a student, son, brother, friend and aspiring artist, because I am choosing what becomes a part of me, the energy and positively to interact with the world and what I care about (You are what you eat, right?). This is my Harvest time, it is very short – but it’s my time.

What helps you keep going during a tough time? What’s your version of “me time”? What’s the biggest object getting in your way? I’m off to go figure my life out. Onwards to the day!

 

Pork Stew
Serves 5
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
9 hr 30 min
Total Time
9 hr 45 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
9 hr 30 min
Total Time
9 hr 45 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 lbs Pork (shoulder or loin) cut into 2 inch pieces
  2. 4 Carrots, peeled and cut roughly into 1/2 inch pieces
  3. 4 ribs Celery, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  4. 1 White or yellow Onion, cut into 1/2 inch dice
  5. 1 quart Chicken Broth
  6. 2 Bay leaves
  7. 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  8. 1 tablespoon Garlic Power
  9. Arrowroot Power (approximately 1 tablespoon per cup of stew, mixed with water into a slurry)
  10. Salt, to taste
  11. Pepper, to taste (be cautious as a little goes a long way!)
Instructions
  1. Heat coconut oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, blot pork with paper towels and season on all sides with salt and pepper. Sear pork on all sides until until golden brown, roughly 2 minutes per side (we’re just browning the meat to get great flavour, the crock pot will cook the pork evenly throughout!).
  2. Add pork to the crockpot with the diced veggies, garlic powder, bay leaves, vinegar and finally the chicken broth. Add additional water if needed just so the liquid barely covers the ingredients.
  3. Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
  4. 30 minutes before serving or storing, turn crockpot to high.
  5. Mix at least a quarter cup of arrowroot powder in half a cup of water into a slurry (it will look like milk) and then add to contents of crock pot.
  6. Allow to cook for approximately 20 minutes with the lid on, removing it occasionally to give it a gentle stir (vigorous stirring will break up the pork!) to distribute the arrowroot powder slurry.
  7. Add another 1/4 cup of powder mixed into a slurry if you would prefer a thicker consistency to your stew.
  8. Add Salt and Pepper to taste.
  9. To serve immediately, add thawed veggies, adjusting seasonings after additions, as the added water content of the veg may dilute your flavours just a bit.
  10. If serving stew at a later time, store stew in portions or as a large batch without frozen veggies, adding desired amounts of veg before serving in order to preserve their colour and texture. (I add frozen veg along with my stew in my lunch containers so they do not become over cooked during storage. It works great!)
  11. Enjoy!
Optional ingredients, to be added to finished stew (post crockpot)
  1. Frozen Peas, as much as you want
  2. Frozen bell pepper veggie mix (feel free to be picky and only use the peppers – I won’t tell!)
  3. I enjoy putting a generous serving of butter to add the heart to this hearty stew
Elevenses http://www.elevenses.ca/

“They have the hue and beauty of all these things under the twilight of Lórien that we love; for we put the thought of all that we love into all that we make”
– J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring 

While having time and the resources to focus on food and health is great, realistically it can be a persistent challenge. A multitude of ingredients, techniques, and a whole bunch of time is needed to successfully pull it off. For me, the most difficult thing to acquire – time.

I just spent the first six hours of my day learning different placements of the tongue for various vowels, Dadaism in a socio-historical-theatrical context, and rehearsing fight choreography. I’m officially on break and no longer thinking about school – the only thing on my mind: lunch.

I have ten minutes to walk back to my locker, five minutes to get settled, five minutes to heat everything up, twenty minutes to eat at my leisure, and of course – ten minutes to clean up and arrive at my movement class.

I’m reminded of the saying, “Winter doesn’t start until you cry a little bit in the morning”. Apparently winter has started a month early. I got no rest from my sleep – because my dreams were filled with Aristophanes’ Lysistrata, George Bernard Shaw monologues, Rapier and Dagger sequences, and the stress of inevitably needing to shovel the ever-growing amount of snow on the sidewalk. I also should mention – I trek to school in the dark, spend my waking hours under fluorescent lights, and I trek back home in the dark. Where is the sun? Where is the rest? Where is the hope?

My lunch and my Harvest: Sweet potato mash, pork-stew and third wave coffee. But that’s just food, right? What’s so rad about stew, mashed tubers and coffee? Great question rhetorical Hunter – what’s rad is that I have control.

Through the choice over food, time, and the planning of these things – especially in a time where I feel I have no control – I get my second wind. I’m finding more rejuvenation when I return to work, than if I were to wolf down food while memorizing a glossary of stage fighting terminology.

This fits into my ever-changing personal philosophy of constantly trying to enjoy everything I do. I love theatre, family and friends and these areas of my life deserve focus, generosity, and real engagement – why would I undermine this? If I am sick, hungry, or exhausted I cannot treat my what I care about with the respect it deserves. This grounds who I am as a student, son, brother, friend and aspiring artist, because I am choosing what becomes a part of me, the energy and positively to interact with the world and what I care about (You are what you eat, right?). This is my Harvest time, it is very short – but it’s my time.

What helps you keep going during a tough time? What’s your version of “me time”? What’s the biggest object getting in your way? I’m off to go figure my life out. Onwards to the day!

 

Pork Stew
Serves 5
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
9 hr 30 min
Total Time
9 hr 45 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
9 hr 30 min
Total Time
9 hr 45 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 lbs Pork (shoulder or loin) cut into 2 inch pieces
  2. 4 Carrots, peeled and cut roughly into 1/2 inch pieces
  3. 4 ribs Celery, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  4. 1 White or yellow Onion, cut into 1/2 inch dice
  5. 1 quart Chicken Broth
  6. 2 Bay leaves
  7. 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  8. 1 tablespoon Garlic Power
  9. Arrowroot Power (approximately 1 tablespoon per cup of stew, mixed with water into a slurry)
  10. Salt, to taste
  11. Pepper, to taste (be cautious as a little goes a long way!)
Instructions
  1. Heat coconut oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, blot pork with paper towels and season on all sides with salt and pepper. Sear pork on all sides until until golden brown, roughly 2 minutes per side (we’re just browning the meat to get great flavour, the crock pot will cook the pork evenly throughout!).
  2. Add pork to the crockpot with the diced veggies, garlic powder, bay leaves, vinegar and finally the chicken broth. Add additional water if needed just so the liquid barely covers the ingredients.
  3. Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
  4. 30 minutes before serving or storing, turn crockpot to high.
  5. Mix at least a quarter cup of arrowroot powder in half a cup of water into a slurry (it will look like milk) and then add to contents of crock pot.
  6. Allow to cook for approximately 20 minutes with the lid on, removing it occasionally to give it a gentle stir (vigorous stirring will break up the pork!) to distribute the arrowroot powder slurry.
  7. Add another 1/4 cup of powder mixed into a slurry if you would prefer a thicker consistency to your stew.
  8. Add Salt and Pepper to taste.
  9. To serve immediately, add thawed veggies, adjusting seasonings after additions, as the added water content of the veg may dilute your flavours just a bit.
  10. If serving stew at a later time, store stew in portions or as a large batch without frozen veggies, adding desired amounts of veg before serving in order to preserve their colour and texture. (I add frozen veg along with my stew in my lunch containers so they do not become over cooked during storage. It works great!)
  11. Enjoy!
Optional ingredients, to be added to finished stew (post crockpot)
  1. Frozen Peas, as much as you want
  2. Frozen bell pepper veggie mix (feel free to be picky and only use the peppers – I won’t tell!)
  3. I enjoy putting a generous serving of butter to add the heart to this hearty stew
Elevenses http://www.elevenses.ca/

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About the author

Hunter

Hunter Cardinal is a writer and resident food experimenter at the elevenses blog. His column explores the tangible aspects of holistic health, attempting to harmonize it with a busy schedule. When he's not eating or thinking of food (which is rare) you can catch Hunter performing at Rapid Fire Theatre in Edmonton and finishing his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting at the University of Alberta.

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2 Comments on “Harvest: Finding Time to Gather

  1. I’ve been eating crockpot stew and turnips for lunches this week, but I’m not as mindful about it as you are. Thanks for making me think.

    Reply
  2. Elaine Robbins

    Great combination using pork shoulder and stewing it. I love pork and winter time stewing and roasting are my favorite cooking methods. Having quality time in your stressful scheduling makes sense and helps you keep fit and healthy. We should all follow that good advice. Visual and recipe are yummy:) Good luck with exams and reports!!!!

    Reply

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