Friday, November 20, 2009

Beki's Pumpkin Pie Recipe

While Beki and I were looking online to find her Pumpkin Pie recipe, we came across a blog post about it...

The link for it is:

Friday, October 23, 2009
Pumpkin Pie

On the way home from the Half Moon Bay Art and Pumpkin Festival, we picked up some pumpkin pie making supplies from a local community market called New Leaf. They turned out perfect and Boo and Little Sister had a great time putting the filling together.

Beki's Pumpkin Pie from Natural Value Canned Pumpkin

Preheat oven 425 degrees.
Beat 2 Eggs, then stir in:
15 oz canned pumpkin
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp ginger
1 can evaporated milk

Pour into pie shell. (We used Maple Lane Bakery Unbleached Pie Crust)
Bake for 15 minutes at 425 degrees.
Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center of the pie comes out clean.
Beki's Pumpkin Pie

Got left over filling? Pour it into an oiled pie pan and bake it along with your pie. We doubled this recipe and ended up with two whole pies and one crustless pie -- enough to last us exactly 3 days.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Turkey Noodle Soup

I make the best turkey noodle soup!

Take the turkey, put it in the oven…the secret is putting an inch or two of water in the pan…so the turkey steams instead of overcooks…just under 3 hours usually for about a 12 pounder…then put all of the bones into a pot, cover with water, add a cut up onion, a stalk of celery, 4-5 cut up carrots, salt, 3-5 whole peppercorns and a bay leaf – hopefully, one that hasn’t been sitting in a spice jar in the cupboard for a decade…then simmer for 8-10 hours…refrigerate overnight….then skim off the fat.

Then to make the soup,,,cut up another 10-12 carrots and put them in the broth…simmer for an hour or until the carrots get soft…the carrots add sweetness.

In a separate pot, cook a package of NV Organic Egg Noodles according to package directions – i think about 8 minutes (closer to the low end of the cooking range as they will cook a little more when you add them to the broth)…then drain. Don’t cook the noodles in the broth – the broth gets gummy that way. Add the noodles and leftover cut-up turkey to the broth, simmer for a few more minutes, then enjoy.

There is a Tupperware container in my refrigerator with some of this now. Pearl had some of it for the first time while I was in Chicago and loved it - it’s almost gone now.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Pumpkin shortage

Because of a poor crop in the Midwest, we aren't going to have our canned pumpkin to sell this year. It's too bad - our canned pumpkin is a good product. We even won the Taster's Choice award for the Best Tasting Canned Pumpkin in the San Francisco Chronicle a few years ago. Hopefully we will have some next year.

I remember when we first came out with it several years ago. My daughter Beki developed the recipe on the back of our can. We tried lots and lots of versions, and settled on one that had more cinnamon and less allspice in it. My contribution to the process was eating lots of pumpkin, accompanied by Reddi Wip whipped cream topping :).

So today we are doing a taste test. We're trying out the Arrowhead Mills ready to eat pumpkin pie mix in an aseptic package...and comparing it with a pumpkin pie made from our 100% canned pumpkin, left over from last year. They're in the over now...results will be posted later :)

off to Chicago for a trade show

I leave Saturday morning for a trade show in Chicago, called PLMA

It's where actual, real live manufacturers of product exhibit their wares.

I remember the first year I attended, back in the early 90's.

I had been a distributor of natural food products from different "manufacturers." In reality, these manufacturers were like us - marketing companies that had different manufacturers produce their products.

Anyway, I had been distributing products from a number of different manufacturers, and I noticed that on all of the mustard shipping cases, the letter "A" didn't print. So...there was

H in

Westbr e

Norg nic

He lthw y

And I wondered...what are the chances that 4 different manufacturers of mustard all have label printers that don't print the letter A?

Of course, when I opened the cases up to look at the products, the jars were the same, the caps were the same, the ingredients were the same, and in the same order....the nutritional information was the same, and the shape of the labels was the same...and I realized, these products are all being made by the same manufacturer.

So when I went past the mustard manufacturer's booth, and saw the jars of Hain, Westbrae, Norganic and Healthway, my assesment was correct - one company was making all of this mustard. That was almost 20 years ago.

Today, companies use fancy inkjet printers that print the letter A, so it would be harder to track down this information :)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

...from the eMail bag_NO KILL Cat Rescue & Sanctuary uses Natural Value Cat Food

I am the Executive Director of 9th Life Hawaii, Maui's only non-profit, NO KILL Cat Rescue & Sanctuary. You can check us out on our website:

We shelter approximately 200-250 cats on any given day. We have found that our special-needs cats, geriatric cats and chronically ill cats really thrive on your cat food.

Two recent examples: Tests were run on Rama, an older cat, and she tested negative for all the truly bad possibilities. Rama had lost so much weight that she was down to 2 1/2 pounds from 5 pounds. Best diagnosis was irritable bowel syndrome but she would not eat the food that the vet suggested. Figuring she was truly at death's door, we decided to feed her whatever she wanted. We offered her Natural Value. That was about 4 months ago. She now weighs almost 6 pounds.

Rama had lost so much weight that she was down to 2 1/2 pounds from 5 pounds

We thought we might have to euthanize her because she had no quality of life and was barely moving. We decided to try one more thing and that was to feed her as much Natural Value canned food as she would eat. You can see the results and why we believe in your product. Phyllis

Her weight today was 5 lbs. 14.5 oz. her lowest weight was 3 lbs. 7 oz. (she is fat and sassy now compared to that).

2nd story: We had a litter of 4 kittens. 2 grew at a normal rate and now weigh about 5 pounds. The remaining two could not gain weight and regurgitated most foods. We put them both on Natural Value and both have gained weight. The most significant change was the little girl we named Sheba. She had stayed under 1 pound two ounces for months while her siblings weighed around 5 pounds. We switched her to Natural Value and she now weighs 2 pounds, has a healthy appetite and is gaining weight each day.

This kitten is now 7 months old. For the longest time it was touch and go. She weighed 1 pound 2 ounces and could not get over that hump. Putting her on your food twice a day and she now weighs 2 pounds. Still NOT a normal weight, but she gains weight every day on your food.

Sheba had stayed under 1 pound two ounces for months  while her siblings weighed around 5 pounds

We thank you again for such a great product!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Increasing Sales and Profits

I don't have a college degree. I like to say, though, that I have a degree from the University of the Street, School of Hard Knocks :).

Seriously, I learned a lot from reading Business Week, Forbes and Fortune over the years, and some things just seemed to make sense to me.

My simple understanding of business developed accordingly. I discovered that you can make more money by: selling more goods, raising your prices, or cutting your costs. Do all 3 and your profits really rise.

Selling more goods can be broken down 4 ways:

You can sell existing products to existing customers

You can sell existing products to new customers

You can sell new products to existing customers

You can sell new products to new customers

Now, the question is, if I already spend 50% of my time trying to sell existing products to existing customers, and another 50% of my time trying to sell existing products to new customers, it doesn't leave a whole lot of time to sell new products to either existing or new customers...

See the dilema? :)

Does anyone have a day stretcher? :)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Hello. I was on vacation for 2 weeks, off the coast of Mexico, and the Internet didn't work as well as I hoped. I've now been back for a week trying to catch up. In retropspect, it probably wasn't such a good idea to go on vacation right after Expo East, but hindsight is always great.

At least now I know where Topolobampo is :)