A Cook's Diary

Andrea’s “The Garden Kitchen” products

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If sweets and chocolate aren’t your thing and you prefer food gifts of the healthy kind, here’s a treat. Reader Andrea sent this photo along with a very good description of her homemade business and products.

I have a home-based business called “The Garden Kitchen.” I sell homemade pasta sauces and dips using fresh herbs and local ingredients from our small farm.

My bestseller is the basil-pili pesto made with organic basil and honey glazed pili nuts. My pesto has a very bright green color because I use freshly picked basil leaves and has an almost creamy texture because of the richness of the pili nuts.

Another very good product is the roasted squash dip. It’s a wonderfully healthy dip for bread, chips or anything dippable, and can be used as sauce for pasta as well. It has a garlicky flavor that’s complemented by a hint of fresh sage.

My bottled products are cooked by me with all natural, if not all organic, ingredients and with no preservatives. I still have some storage life problems that I need to resolve. Meanwhile, I simply prepare my sauces on the day that they need to be delivered and they must be refrigerated immediately to avoid spoilage.

I recommend as a good christmas gift my arrabiata sauce which has a much longer shelf life than the rest because of the acidity of the tomatoes. I only use fresh tomatoes for my arrabiata and fresh italian oregano and basil, long simmered for hours until the hidden sweetness of the tomatoes are released. They come mildly spiced with red chilies that we also grow.

My husband has a farm and produces hydroponically grown lettuce, bok choi and arugula, and organically propagated herbs. We also accept bulk orders of fresh greens and herb seedlings. We also sell organic fertilizer from our vermiculture.

My products can be bought at the Soderno Organic Market every sunday from 7am to 4pm at the Molito Lifestyle Center in Alabang.

Orders can be made by contacting me at 09178050600. We are based in Laguna but we can deliver to Metro manila for free with a minimum order worth P2,000. Our price list is below but other details are available in our website.

Homemade bottled sauces:

Basil-pili pesto – P200 (250ml bottle)
Arrabiata – P150 (250ml bottle)
Roasted squash sauce – P150 (250ml bottle)

Fresh lettuce – P250/kg
Herb seedlings – P50 each

Organic vermicast – P30 (400g)

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