Friday, November 1, 2013

Cooking with Astrology from Joan Porte

"The perfect gift with great recipes for the holidays!" 
~BK Walker, Author of Wolves of Shadow Falls Series

About the Author - Joan Porte

Joan started "playing" with Astrology when she was in grammar school. She always had a fixation with the planets - Pluto being her favorite (surprise she is Scorpio Sun!) Yes, Pluto is still a planet to her! She put her astrology "toys" away when she grew up and went into the "real world," sadly convinced that it was time to do more important things. The universe and her North Node in Sagittarius woke her up in her mid-thirties after which she began an intensive study of Western astrology.

According to Joan, "Modern Man takes for granted the Sun and how its energy propels and sustains life. Moon energy controls the tides yet we ignore the other more personal influences it has on our bodies and lives. We have lost the art of appreciating and reading the stars as messengers from the god and goddess. Humanity has disconnected from its source
and consequently suffers emotionally, spiritually and physically."

"Each person is born with a map - a soul map - that is his or her astrological chart. It is a map through the maze of life that shows the karma we need to balance our soul's desire for a life that leads to enhanced soul growth. I simply read the map - illustrating where you have been and where you are going to make your journey through life less bumpy." With this cook book Joan is combining her astrological knowledge with her lifelong love of cooking in her own inimitable way.

She is the author of the blog
Karmic Astrology.

Her other book is Fortyish: Lessons For the Ages From a Baby Boomer.

Website | Signs Of The Tines FB | Karmic Astrology by Joan Facebook | Blog


“Signs of the Tines: The Ultimate Astrological Cookbook” available at, Amazon or Barnes and
When I decided to write an astrological cookbook, I had to come up with recipes that matched the signs.  Happily, it was easier than I thought. I started walking back through the years and to the recipes my mother had left us. Amazingly, these family specialties were a good starting point. For instance, her Italian Spaghetti Sauce with Hard Boiled Eggs (see below) would be perfect for the homey Cancers.
Then I tapped my friends. I needed some “international dishes” for Sagittarians so I went to my friend Marge whose husband served in Korea for the Peace Corps and got a wonderful biminbap recipe. My friend Linda offered her French Canadian tourtiere.
Suddenly I had too many recipes and had to cull them down! Therefore, if you are thinking of writing a cookbook – even one that seems too disconnected like marrying Astrology and cooking – don’t fear, the ideas are closer than you think.
Jean Garofalo Porte’s “Gravy’ Spaghetti Sauce with Hard Boiled Eggs
Serves 6 -8
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound of ground beef or pork*
1 medium white onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
3 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh oregano, stemmed and chopped
1 28-ounce can chopped tomatoes (or 3 cups of my roasted tomatoes below)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon sugar
Pinch red pepper flakes
8 hardboiled eggs
½ cup fresh basil, gently chopped

In a large soup pan, over medium heat, warm the oil olive. Add the ground meat and onion and sauté until the meat browns and the onion is translucent about 8 -10 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté another minute. Add the herbs, tomatoes, salt, sugar, and pepper. Bring to a boil, while stirring often. As soon as it boils, add the eggs (and any other precooked meat- see below.) Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
Just before serving add the basil and stir.

*Mom didn’t stand on ceremony when it came to the meat in her sauce. Sometimes there would be a left over pork chop in the refrigerator, a piece of steak of spare ribs and they would find their way into the Sunday gravy. It is a great way to clean out the refrigerator and “recycle.”  Put these in at the end of cooking with the eggs not when you are browning the chopped meat.

Roasted Tomatoes
I love to scour the farmers markets in June and July for tomato “seconds.” These are tomatoes are a bit bruised or damaged in some way that make them unappealing to the American consumer. I get several baskets and head to the kitchen!  These tomatoes are easy to freeze and it is great to taste the goodness of summer in the dead of winter.
This makes about 3 cups.
5 pounds fresh tomatoes
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons kosher salt
5 tablespoons fresh oregano, chopped
5 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley, chopped
3 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
1-cup fresh basil leaves.

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.
Pour the tomatoes into the sink or a large basin filled with cool water for a nice bath. When washed, core and remove any major blemishes. Don’t skin them –there is a lot of flavor and many vitamins lurking in that skin.
Cover the bottom of a roasting pan with a quarter or an inch of olive oil. Place a single layer of tomatoes in the roasting pan- don’t heap them in – even if you have to use several pans just make one layer per pan.
Sprinkle the tomatoes with the herbs and spices except for the basil.
Turn the tomatoes with a large spoon – or for more fun, with your hands – until coated with the oil and spices. If they seem dry, pour some more oil on top. You don’t want them swimming but you want them coated well.
Place the roasting pan into your oven and let them slow cook for 2 -3 hours. The tomatoes should be just starting to shrivel. Once they are cool, add the basil leaves to the pan, and stir well.
Place the tomatoes with the oil and herbs still in the pan in plastic containers and freeze!

Watch Media Videos with Joan

Genre: Astrological Cookbook
Publisher: Soulsign Publishing Company Ingraham Press
Release Date: April 2013

Book Description:

A new breed of cookbook that combines personal astrology with a love for preparing and sharing delicious meals. Astrologer and gastronome Joan Porte brings a new, fun twist to cooking by showing anyone who loves to cook how to personalize a menu for your family and friends. Beautiful photographs complement the more than 120 featured recipes organized by zodiac sign. Choose a dish or plan a multi-course meal with selections from: Appetizers, Soups, Pasta, Veggies & Fruit, Meat & Fish, and Dessert for each of the twelve signs. SIGNS OF THE TINES is a heart-warming and mouth-watering invitation to eat in alignment with our stars!
Adam Gainsburg / Soulsign

The 295-page book with more than 120 recipes is written to celebrate a unique pairing of food and astrology.
Discover why:

Scorpios have a craving for pasta puttanesca
Librans feel grounded when they dig into a chocolate mousse parfait
Cancerians stand tall with their bowl of Brunswick stew
Virgoans set aside their healthy-conscious habits when faced with chocolate raspberry ramekins
Aquarians respond to the sustainable fish used in Pollock with berry prosecco sauce
Pisceans beat a common ailment when feasting on quinoa with roasted root veggies.

"These recipes are taken from a number of sources; some are family gems, others I've concocted and tweaked over the years," says author Joan Porte.

The home cook will discover how astrology as a source for new food ideas and new ways to entertain friends. And the astrology enthusiast will discover how cooking can be a new use for astrology as a way to add more meaning to the daily ritual of eating we perform to survive and thrive.

Tomatoes Stuffed With Artichokes & Feta

Taurus is a bit confusing when it comes to color. Bulls are drawn to the color red; however, the color associated with Taurus is emerald green, symbolizing the pastures in which they love to laze comfortably. Therefore, I offer here a very red veggie dish with a dash of green.
One of the first dishes I made when I was a kid were tomatoes stuffed with chicken and tuna salads. I thought they were just the neatest things. As I grew as a person and a cook, I encountered many recipes that stuffed tomatoes with some kind of creamy spinach messes or ones that were all breadcrumbs and cheese.

This recipe is my grown-up version of the stuffed tomato that embraces the artichoke as well and is easy enough for the sometimes lazy Taurus to make. (Did I say lazy? Oops. I hope they don’t stampede.)

6 large firm tomatoes*
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 14-ounce cans un-marinated artichoke hearts, diced
3 shallots, diced
3 garlic cloves, diced
Juice of ½ lemon
½ cup pitted Kalamata olives, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon fresh oregano, minced
10 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
6 big basil leaves

Serves 6

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Cut the stems off of the tomatoes and scoop out the pulp, leaving the shell. Set the pulp aside in a small dish. Drain the artichoke hearts in a colander.

Heat the oil in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Rough chop the tomato pulp and add to the pan; cook down until most of the moisture of the tomato is gone. Add the shallots and garlic and sauté until soft – about 2 minutes. (You may have to drizzle more olive oil into the pan to keep the veggies from sticking.)

Remove the cooked vegetables to a small dish to cool and add the artichoke hearts to the pan. Cook until they begin to turn golden brown. Squeeze the juice of the lemon in a small dish (watch the pits) and pour over the hearts. Let the lemon juice cook down and add the olives. Stir in the oregano and remove immediately from the heat. Add all of the vegetables together in one dish and let the mixture cool to the touch.

Fill the tomatoes ½ way with artichoke mixture, add a layer of feta, fill the tomato to the top with more artichoke mixture and top with more feta. Place a basil leaf on top of each tomato.

Place tomatoes on a greased cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes. The cheese should be melted and lightly brown.

Serve warm.

*Depending on the size of your tomatoes you may have some artichokes left over. The mixture is great reheated and used as a topping for steaks or salads.

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