Well hello there, thanks for stopping by our little corner of the world wide web. My name is Marilene and this is where I show you what I’ve been eating and how I made it.
The blog is a joint effort between myself and my husband, M. I come up with all the recipes and the writing and he is in charge of the photography (or food porn as he likes to call it).
What inspired us to start a blog you ask? M and I have both been cooking at home and enjoying every moment of it for a long time. Sitting down to a homemade meal has always been a key part of our lives. Over the last few years, we have been trying to create the most delicious meals we can using real, whole food. We live an active lifestyle amidst a busy work week and we wanted food to be more than just a tasty past time, we wanted it to be nourishing sustenance that will power us until we’re 110 years old. Over time, our daily food has evolved to be mostly paleo with some occasional dairy and rice thrown in (who can turn down a nice piece of sushi). Gluten is no longer allowed in our bellies or in our home so all of our recipes are gluten free.
Pork and Greens was born out of a desire to share our most favourite foods with any one who wants to learn more about what eating whole, delicious, fresh food looks like on a daily basis. Our most favourite foods happen to be meat and vegetables and this also happens to be what M and I were both raised on. Neither of our parents were paleo or health obsessed but they instilled in us a strong sense that home cooked food from things that will go rotten if you leave them alone for too long is really the only way to eat.
M was born in Poland and his mom used to grate carrots from her own mother’s garden, place them in cheesecloth and squeeze them to extract all their fresh juice. Drinking boxes? No way, M didn’t drink any coloured liquid unless it was homemade. Polish cuisine is sort of an ode to pork. The main protein eaten in the country is almost always some cut of pig. Sausages, pork roast, ham, pork chops. Dressed up or down, pork served alongside boiled potatoes, cooked beets and traditionally fermented pickles and sauerkraut, is the backbone of Polish cooking.
I grew up in a Portuguese household. My parents immigrated to Canada in 1975 but they have never let go of their desire to teach my brother and I about Portuguese culture, of which food is quite possibly the most important part. “Eat. Take More. Please don’t be hungry.” That’s how you say I love you in Portuguese. Food is how you celebrate, how you heal, how you mourn. In Portugal you eat no less than 4 times a day and you almost always throw in an official mid morning snack and an after dinner nutrition break lest you commit the unthinkable sacrifice of going more than 2 hours without eating. Portuguese food, much like Polish food, is humble, sustaining and very, very delicious. There is no fancy plating or extra garnishes. The flavours aren’t particularly diverse: lemon, garlic, red pepper paste, olive oil and bay leaf mostly. But the result is satisfying food that never disappoints. As I look back on all the food my mom prepared growing up and to this day, very little of it contained any gluten and none of it ever came from a box. Homemade everything was the rule at my house and any junk food I got to eat was strictly a product of my begging my parents for a taste of Canadian culture.
I can’t say that my cooking now is particularly Portuguese (or Polish) but the inspiration is weaved through everything I make. Pork and Greens is about simple, delicious recipes made from real, unprocessed ingredients. Some recipes will whip up quickly while others require the slow, methodical care that was so essential to the cooking of our ancestors. We recognize that eating whole food daily is not always as affordable as it should be so we’ll share some of our tips. We’re not very strict around here so you will find sweet treats and homemade beverages amidst our meat and vegetable approach. This is a glimpse into what our table really looks like, and we’re so happy you’re here to take a peak.
Yours truly in bacon and veg,