Monthly Archives: March 2016

Chive Kitchen

IMG_0740You might find it interesting that my trips to SE MI revolve around restaurants. I find the Detroit area to be a delightfully nourishing visit. The latest restaurant that I’ve discovered is Chive Kitchen in Farmington, MI. That is a northwest of Detroit. They are open six days per week: Tuesday through Sunday. We learned about them during a recent trip – just in time for a stop for Sunday brunch.

 

Their purpose, according to their website, is to serve vegan dishes that appeal to a wide range of tastes – including meat-lovers. The restaurant is located in The Groves shopping center in downtown Farmington. It’s small, but seems spacious with its crisp, white walls and casual seating.

 

They opened in late December 2015 and recently received their liquor license. The alcohol menu features Michigan beers, wines, and spirits. The food menu features food produced from Michigan, such as McClure’s pickles and whole wheat flour from Westwind Milling. They also source food from Cherry Capital Foods where they can get Michigan produce, such as dried black beans and frozen butternut squash and peas, right now.

 

In the spring, they will purchase fresh MI produce from Delbene, a distributor that works out of the Detroit Eastern Market. Their pastry chef, Azeezah also works with a local farm, and she will be bringing fresh produce to the restaurant.

 

I spoke with owner, Suzy Silvestre. She said, “I think we hit the mark for what we set out to do. We have non-vegans coming in and enjoying their meals.” Well, I sure enjoyed my meal when I visited, and I will be back over there as soon as I can get there.

 

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“Cheese” Plate

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Tortilla Soup

 

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Maple Water – It’s a Thing

Maple WaterRecently, I went to a farm in Baroda to pick up some maple water. It’s the sap from the maple tree. The farmer was boiling it down for maple syrup to sell. I love maple syrup, but I also love to drink the raw maple water. When people ask me what it tastes like I say, “It tastes like spring.” It’s fresh and slightly sweet. It’s my spring tonic.

 

I take home a few gallons for the year. I drink about one half-gallon over the first few days and freeze the rest (see below). It MUST stay refrigerated; I don’t keep it fresh for more than four days. In my case, it’s right out of the tree bucket. So, it will have natural bacteria in it. (Drink it at your own risk, although I’ve not had any problems with it.) It’s live nourishment.

 

You could boil it to act as pasteurization and then cool it to drink, if you like. Companies are starting to package it for sale. Personally, I would not purchase packaged maple water, because to me, it’s factory food rather than a natural connection with the trees of Michigan.

 

I have been freezing my stash in glass jars, but I’ve found that even when I’m careful to not fill them to the top, there can still be some breakage. Who knew that sap expanded so much? It will even expand outward when there is room for it to expand upward to the top. Freezing it in plastic would work better, although I suppose there is still a chance to overfill and crack the containers, if you are not careful.

 

Let me know if you’ve tried it and what you think.