Q. Why do you call for pastured, organic meat and dairy in your recipes?
A. I try to source all meat and dairy products from pastured, organic sources. There are multiple reasons this is worth the added cost, including greater personal health benefits from the improved Omega 3 profiles; better health, welfare, and living conditions for the animals; better practices for the environment; and, finally, they taste much better!
Q. Since Seasonal and Savory is testing baked goods at 5000 feet above sea level, do I need to make any adjustments if I live at or around sea level?
A. Probably, yes–baked goods will generally take longer to bake at sea level, and you may need to slightly decrease the amounts of liquid. Because I am aware that most people do not live at altitude, I try to provide a range for baking times, as well as a description of how the product should look and/or feel when it is ready. Similarly, stove-top cooking may require a decrease in liquids if the final product involves a sauce.
Q. Your recipes call for spices that I have not have heard of, like Aleppo pepper. Where can I find them, and/or is there a good substitute?
A. I love Penzey’s for spices, and they carry just about anything you need–note that they are not paying me to say this, I just happen to love their stuff. In most cases I will suggest an alternative spice if I think it will work. So, you could substitute crushed red pepper flakes for Aleppo pepper, although Aleppo pepper is fruitier in flavor and a usually has a little less heat. If you are not sure about a substitution, please leave me a comment and ask!
Q. I would like to cook with more local vegetables, but I don’t live near a farmers’ market.
A. I recommend checking out localharvest.org if you don’t have a local market. They have an extensive database of locally-produced produce, meats, eggs, honey, and more, as well as Community Supported Agriculture (C.S.A.) programs that may be close by.