22 April 2010

Happy Earth Day!

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Today marks the 40th year we have celebrated Earth Day! Earth Day was founded in 1970 by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson. On April 22nd, 1970 where approximately 20 million Americans participated in the beginning of an environmental movement. Thousands of colleges and universities organized protests against the deterioration of the environment. Groups that had been protesting and fighting against oil spills, power plants, toxic dumps, pesticides, loss of wilderness, and extinction of wildlife, realized that they shared common interests and values.

Since then, people typically celebrate Earth Day by planting trees, organizing recycling activities, picking up trash in local areas, packing lunches in recycle-able containers, and many universities still hold environmental teach-ins to commemorate the first Earth Day in 1970.

So what can you do to commemorate Earth Day at home? If crafts like egg carton mobiles and aluminum can art isn’t your thing, why not prepare a meal that’s easy on the environment? Try some recipes that feature seasonal fruits and vegetables (Peaches, apples, sweet bell peppers, nectarines, strawberries, sweet bell peppers, spinach, lettuce, and potatoes typically have the highest pesticide rates according to the Environmental Working Group. Instead, look for onions, avocados, frozen sweet corn, asparagus, broccoli, mangos, pineapples, cabbage, and papayas, which have the lowest pesticide rates!) Look for fruits and veggies at your local farmers market, there’s less chance of them using pesticides on their products than larger farmers, and it’s probably cheaper!

If you’re looking for a great “Green” recipe, here’s one that I found on Kaboose.com that I think sounds pretty de-lish!

Ingredients:
• 8 oz. angel hair pasta
• 1 TBSP olive oils
• 1-1/2 pounds fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut in one inch pieces
• ¼ cup chicken broth
• ½ pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
• ½ tsp crushed red pepper
• ½ cup grated parmesan cheese

Cooking Instructions
1. Cook pasta according to package instructions.
2. Heat the olive oil in a nonstick skillet. Saute asparagus in the pan over medium heat for about 3 minutes. Add chicken broth and mushroom slices; cook 3 minutes more.
3. Drain pasta, and transfer to a serving dish. Gently toss pasta with asparagus mixture; sprinkle with Parmesan and crushed red pepper.

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