You may have heard of insect-catching plants like the Venus fly trap but have you ever come across the infamous flesh-eating plants of Tasmania?
The southern island boasts an impressive array of carnivorous plants that will eat insects and any small prey that they can get their carnivorous florets on – but not anything as big as a human so you can tread safely in the Tasmanian bush.
Darren Cullen from Tasmania collects the flesh eating plants. His impressive assortment include the popular and common as well as the rare and endemic.
WE GET PEOPLE TRAVELLING HERE TO SEE TASMANIAN CARNIVOROUS PLANTS. WE HAVE TWO GENERA OF CARNIVOROUS PLANTS HERE, DROSERA AND UTRICULARIA, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS SUNDEWS AND BLADDERWORTS. YOU GROW BLADDERWORTS FOR THEIR AMAZING FLOWERS AS THE TRAPS ARE UNDERGROUND.
The flesh-eating plants are technically endangered in Tasmania but are commonly found around Victoria and in parts of New Zealand.
WHAT FLESH DO THESE PLANTS EAT?
Sundews, one of the state’s most sought after carnivores, are known for their glandular tentacles that are covered in a sticky liquid secretion. Their prey, which mostly consists of insects are attracted to the sweet smell of the sticky liquid that the plant secretes. Once this liquid is touched by their prey, they become trapped in the sticky mucus and die from asphyxiation as it envelops them.
Our guide for the day, Latvian blogger Zane Enina ofMugursoma.lv fame tells me that this is a pretty common conversation amongst Latvians during Autumn.
I wonder immediately if they are enough mushrooms for every Latvian to go mushroom picking.
‘50% of Latvia is covered by forests.There are always enough mushrooms for everyone. Plus a whole lot of space to get lost in and escape reality.’
We’re rolling through an open road about 100 kms outside of Riga. We’re surrounded by dense forests and an immense blanket of silence. We’ve been driving for almost 20 minutes from Zane’s house in Vangazi and there’s been nothing but green forests and deep blue skies.
I’m pretty excited about the idea of foraging for food. It has been one of those skills I’ve been always curious to learn more about. My father grew up in a rural part of India where nature’s bounty was rich. The garden of the house he grew up in was more like a jungle. You could find everything here from the freshest (hottest) green chillies
Carving a pumpkin isn’t rocket science, but it’s still wise to have a game plan. Before you lop off the top of that pumpkin and grab a handful of gooey squash guts, take a look through our basic guide to carving the best Halloween pumpkin.
Follow these steps and you’ll end up with a cute and classic jack-o’-lantern with easy, no-fuss cleanup afterwards.
Pick a Long-Lasting Pumpkin
You want your pumpkin to last through Halloween and beyond, right? This starts with the kind of pumpkin you pick out. Read our tips here for picking a good, long-lasting pumpkin, and prepping it for preserving:
First rule of pumpkin carving: Do it somewhere you don’t mind getting messy, ideally outdoors. Line your work surface (a sturdy table or the ground) with something you’ll throw away later — like butcher paper, newsprint, or flattened brown paper grocery bags. If using the latter, simply cut down one side of the grocery bag, then cut off the base of the bag so you have a big rectangle of brown paper. Layer a few of these on the table and you’re good to go.
Gather the Right Tools for the Job
Once you’ve got your work surface ready, it’s time to assemble the proper tools. You can totally get a pumpkin carving kit from your local drugstore, supermarket, or Halloween pop-up shop. Or you can use a few tools from your kitchen. (See:To Carve Pumpkins Safely, You Only Need These Two Tools.) Just make sure you have everything you need at the ready so you don’t have to traipse back through your kitchen with pumpkin-gut-covered hands.
2 Key Tools for Pumpkin Carving
Draw Before You Carve
In addition to your carving tools, you’ll need a pen for drawing your design onto the pumpkin, and couple big bowls — one for the seeds (the best part of pumpkin carving!) and one for the rest of the pumpkin goo and throwaway bits leftover from carving. And that’s about it, really!
Don’t Throw Away the Seeds!
Whatever you do, save those pumpkin seeds! They’re so, so good roasted simply with oil and salt. It’s not hard, but we have all the steps for you, just in case.
Set up your workspace:Line a sturdy table with flattened grocery bags, newsprint, or butcher paper. Have your permanent marker, carving tools, and bowls nearby.
Draw your design:After you’ve determined the best side of your pumpkin for a face, use the permanent marker to sketch out eyes, a nose, and a toothy grin.
Draw your lid:Outline a circular lid around the pumpkin stem, about 5 to 6 inches in diameter. Add a notch in the back if you like — this makes it easier to line up.
Cut out the pumpkin lid:With a slim pumpkin carving knife (the carving tool with a toothed blade like a mini-saw) or serrated knife, cut along the outline of your pumpkin lid. Make sure you slice through the pumpkin at a 45-degree inward angle, so you’ll be able to replace the lid without it falling in.
I don’t know about you all, but the moment the calendar flipped over this weekend, all I wanted to do was cozy up with some of my fall faves. It was gray and rainy here these past few days, which probably provided extra incentive to stay in and snuggle up. And sure enough, one thing led to another, and before you knew it our little home was in full-on, festive, fall hygge mode. We’re talkin’ a fireside candle burning, fall playlist on the speaker, inaugural pumpkin roll of the season baking in the oven, a steaming cup of hot cinnamon spice tea in my paws, big cozy throw back on the couch, soft slippers on my feet. And the quintessential fall first — a big butternut squash ready and waiting on the counter to be turned into my mom’s famous butternut squash soup recipe.
We made a huge batch and shared it with some neighbors and friends who were over throughout the weekend. And as always, it proved to be the perfect fall comfort food. It’s incredibly easy to make in the slow cooker, pressure cooker, or on the stovetop. (I’ve included all three methods below.) It’s full of good-for-you veggies, and also happens to be naturally gluten-free and vegan. And it’s just the perfect balance of sweet and savory seasonal flavors.
I first shared this recipe back on the blog four years ago, but thought it was worth bumping it back to the top of the blog today in case you’re also craving all of the cozy fall vibes. It won’t let you down.
BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP INGREDIENTS:
To make this easy butternut squash soup recipe, you will need:
Butternut squash: You can either use 1 medium-sized fresh butternut squash. (<– Here is my tutorial for how to select, peel and cut fresh butternut squash.) Or feel free to save a step and purchase your squash pre-cut, either in the fresh or frozen vegetable section of the grocery store.
Carrot, apple and onion: To add some extra sweet and savory flavors to the soup.
Vegetable stock and coconut milk: For your broth. (We’ll stir the coconut milk in at the very end.)
Garlic, sage, salt, black pepper, cayenne, cinnamon and nutmeg: My favorite seasoning combo. If you don’t have fresh sage on hand, feel free to use a pinch of dried. (And if you do have fresh sage, I also love to fry up a few extra leaves and use them as a garnish on top.) Also feel free to add more or less cayenne to taste.
Your choice of garnishes: I like to drizzle on some extra coconut milk, maybe sprinkle of toasted pepitas, and a sprinkle of extra black pepper and/or smoked paprika. Mom’s version called for sprinkling cayenne on top. Or I’ve included lots of other ideas for fun garnishes below.
You will also need a:
Stockpot, Crock-Pot or Instant Pot: Whichever cooking method you prefer.
Combine your ingredients (minus the coconut milk) in a slow cooker*. Roughly diced — don’t spend time perfectly chopping all of your ingredients. Feel free to use a large (6-quart) slow cooker or a small (3.5- to 4-quart) slow cooker.
Cook until tender. Generally about 6-8 hours on low, or 3-4 hours on high. Then remove and discard the sage and add
This Easy Vegan Quiche is perfect for your breakfast or brunch! The filling, made with tofu, is loaded with burst tomatoes, caramelised onions and sautéed mushrooms and spinach and is baked in a buttery flaky crust!
Here’s my vision of a perfect Christmas breakfast table. Fresh croissants, some sort of baked French toast, a quiche, a plate of sliced fruits (pineapples, oranges and grapefruits) and a pitcher or an agua Fresca. Breakfast muffins on the side. Okay, now veganise it all. You guys know that I’ve made the overnight baked French toast for you, working on the croissants (or just buying vegan ones true story) and FINALLY – the quiche is here. I’m talking a filling, “eggy” Vegan Quiche that’s loaded up with caramelised onions, burst tomatoes, sautéed mushrooms and spinach and baked in a buttery flaky crust. I’m talking the kind of quiche you finish in less than 24 hours with your brother and your husband. The kind of quiche that makes you limit the other goodies to ensure you have space for one more slice.
After making these quiche muffin cups, I wanted more quiche action in my life. I mentioned in that post that my go to brunch option as a vegetarian was a slice of quiche, toast and a side salad. It made me feel like I had my life put together, ladies who brunch kinda thing. Fast forward to turning vegan (and having months on and off before that where I would just randomly hate eggs) I can finally have my cake (quiche – close enough) and
If you’re trying to eat healthier, you may be considering omitting meat from your diet. Many restaurants and supermarkets now offer protein alternatives to make your decision easier. But is a vegetarian diet healthier? Learn about the pros and cons of a diet for vegetarian or vegan vs. a meat-eater to inform you as you consider changing your lifestyle.
Types of Vegetarians
Although all vegetarians avoid eating meat, poultry and sometimes fish, there are many different variations of the vegetarian diet.
Lacto vegetarians avoid all meat, poultry, fish and eggs, but they consume dairy products.
Lacto-ovo vegetarians don’t eat the flesh of any animal. No meat, poultry or fish, but eggs and dairy products are acceptable.
Ovo vegetarians eat eggs but refrain from eating meat, poultry, fish and dairy products.
Pesco vegetarians or pescatarians avoid meat but may eat fish.
Pollo-vegetarians don’t eat red meat but eat poultry.
How Many People Are Vegetarians?
Approximately 8 million adults in the U.S. do not eat meat, poultry or fish, according to the 2016 National Harris Poll published by the Vegetarian Resource Group. About one-half of vegetarians are also vegans — approximately 3.7 million U.S. adults.
Vegetarians, including vegans, make up the following percentages of the U.S. population:
3.2 percent are adult males
3.5 percent are adult females
5.3 percent are ages 18 to 34
3.1 percent are ages 35 to 44
2.2 percent are ages 45 to 54
1.8 percent are over age 65
Additionally, an increasing number of people have omitted or cut back on red meat consumption but still eat chicken and fish. Statistics show that 37 percent of Americans often or always eat vegetarian meals when dining out. This has major implications on the food and restaurant industry, which must offer meat alternatives and vegetarian dishes.
Reasons Why People Go Vegetarian
People choose to eat vegetarian for a variety of reasons. The Humane Research Council took a survey of the primary and contributory motivations for individuals to become vegetarians. Most people have multiple reasons for their transition, but the following are some of the more common: