Cooking & eating Local with Helga’s Pennsylvania Cooking –  Foodie Friday Healthy Lifestyle Show

Cooking & eating Local with Helga’s Pennsylvania Cooking – Foodie Friday Healthy Lifestyle Show


welcome to Happy Trails hiking on this
station you’ll find content about Park travel as well as living a healthy
lifestyle if you’re interested in those sorts of things
I would invite you to subscribe my name is Kay and this is the healthy lifestyle
show on this show I’m encouraging you to live the life you love
this is foodie Friday and today I have a special guest my guest today is Helga
from Helga’s Pennsylvania cooking it’s a YouTube channel and I’ve been following
her for years now! Helga grew up in rural northeastern central
Pennsylvania on a dairy farm with parents who raised organic gardens their
own meat and even put up their own grain cheeses and other preserving she has
stayed true to her roots in her cooking preserving and sharing recipes from
Pennsylvania um from Pennsylvania Dutch country and the coal region keeping
alive the regional food and culture she grew up with ladies and gentlemen I
would like to have you welcome hoga to be show today Thank You Helga for being
here thanks for me much you know this is very exciting for me because of course I
started watching you when we started YouTube like three years ago and got to
collaborate with you once and that was just really fun and I’m just so excited
to have you here and your channels grown so much I’m just I’m just so excited to
see your success that’s awesome so I think go ahead I’ve enjoyed your channel
all the way – you guys get to go to so many awesome places I absolutely would
love to see some of the country that you have I love hiking and I don’t get to do
enough of it with what the schedule like that so I hear ya and we’re gonna talk
about that schedule yeah there you go well yeah it’s really fun that we can be
you know that youtubers can enjoy this nation this name
and we cross pollinate yes is a good word for it
but it’s good that we can meet in in from being across the country I’ve done
a lot of Midwest cooking and we love talking about cooking here on the
healthy lifestyle show if you’ve noticed at all but um so I’ve enjoyed your
channel for years and one thing I noticed right off the bat is that you
make everything I like everything it was so neat to watch you make all the stocks
and the dressings and sauces and just things that I would go and buy in the
store um or at a farmers market or something and I’m like oh yeah thank you
can make that um so um back then I was working a full-time job and thought
there’s that’s great but there’s no way I have time to make that can you talk a
little bit about the amount of time that it takes to to make these things and is
it really a time saving or money saving and things like that so I guess part of
it goes to a couple different things one is logistics so I work a 12 hour swing
shift schedule the days that I work 12 hours plus then I have my animal chores
that the farm are really 16-hour days so the days that I’m off I prep ahead
I cook ahead the days I’m on midnight shifts I still cook day shifts there’s
just no time my night shifts I just don’t sleep
how many will sleep for a midnight shift for years so but uh so I think a lot of
it comes down to planning I don’t think people realize that it is very doable it
really is for the amount of time that you would take to heat stuff up in a
microwave and cook stuff in a microwave a lot of times you can do a regular meal
from scratch that tastes way better is cheaper and you have whole ingredients
without preservatives and stuff that you don’t want in there so I think a lot of
it comes down to planning and time management I’m a multitasker I don’t
just do one thing I usually have several plates
spinning on the poles at the same time but you know and that’s not a thing part
of it too comes down to experience because I know how long it takes to do
certain things and I can have this started get this next piece going and
finish on out why all of it comes together at the same time so I think
some of it is just logistics and learning how the plan as far as cheaper
yeah definitely cheaper depending on what you’re doing for the most part it
really is and the big thing is whole ingredients that you’re sourcing you’re
not getting stuff that you don’t want and it and the flavor I mean I’m sorry
but a lot of times there’s just nothing you’re gonna buy in that process middle
of the store that tastes like fresh ingredients yes I’ve noticed that a lot
okay so when you showed me how to make chicken stock or vegetable stock one of
the one of the two I was like okay well fine I’m gonna make chili with this
chicken stock helga taught me how to make and so I made it and now it’s like
what what did you do this is not as salty as it was you know as it was the
last time and you got to do this better and that every time do this every time
whatever you did it was fantastic it was like thanks so good I shall message you
and gone Matt loved it anyway but yeah it really
does make a huge difference the amount of salt so the amount of fat the amount
of non pronounceable things that are in your food in the middle of the grocery
store now do I still buy dressings yeah I still
buy dresses sometimes you have to you know and that side net goes um I like I
said I’ve enjoyed watching your channel a you said in your on your blog which
I’d really not looked at your blog before but you said on your blog that
your cooking is not Dutch but German so can you tell me a little bit of
difference about between Dutch enger’ cooking so actually PA Dutch is German
the PA Dutch settlements here were actually German German people’s and it
was boys land Deutschland was what they called Germany so that’s why they call
it PA Dutch so it was the German settlements and also a lot of Amish also
came over Anabaptist from that region so the Dutch comes from Deutschland which
basically was Germany at the time sure okay um it so I don’t know if there what
would be a strong difference like is there vegetable different for a
difference is it just a different style of cooking when you think if you’re if
you’re going to styles of cooking yeah be a Dutch P a Dutch cooking is I’m
gonna say definitely heavy on on your vegetables and pork and chicken and
stuff that do a lot of noodle a lot of homemade noodle dishes you know some of
us about similar coal region cooking you know Polish polish and Romanian and
Ukrainian people’s and German people had a lot of common dishes sometimes they
call them separate things like for example what we call blind pigeons for
pigeons our stuffed cabbage rolls but in this area depending on whether you were
Canyon or polish or German they might be Lukey clunky glob ki but it’s all the
same yeah okay I yeah I understand that so we moved to st. Louis not too long
ago well not too long ago it seems like not too long ago but it was 11 years ago
um so and lots of things that I call one thing are different because I grew up
with a German mother who had a very German mother and everybody around
here’s to Italian and so yeah that’s fun um so you have a
small farm and do you grow or raise all of your food that you eat no I wish that
I could but yeah there’s no way with the way I work and stuff that I can do that
I try and raise enough of my own stuff I try to offset years like last year I did
my canticle spiced beets and I did enough last year to last me like two
years oh there you go chili sauce last year but we went
through that so quickly that I had to make another batch this year because
there’s no way what I had left was gonna last another year um but so I try so
like if I know I’m gonna be putting up bus also chili sauce or tomato sauce
which are things I really like to put up myself I try and grow as much of that as
I can so I’ll try and grow as many of the tomatoes peppers and stuff like that
and I’ll try and offset years growing up we did raise most of our all of our own
stuff we even had our own grain milling stuff so we did that I’m up through the
70s and early 80s um where the dairy we did our own we had our own book
separator and stuff so we’d make all around yogurt and butter and some
cheeses and did all that stuff ourselves so I did grow up doing that we did
provide most of our own stuff we put up three to four hundred quarts a year Wow
preserve you know so that’s amazing that’s really cool um so one of the
things that you said you are passionate about is non-gmo so I don’t think that’s
one of those buzzwords you know one of those trend trendy words that people
have been throwing around lately and I don’t know if lots of people know what
that means when they see it on a label do you want to talk a little bit about
non-gmo foods and what the importance of that is to you absolutely I’ll be honest
I was not real educated about it until I end up doing a thesis on it for my
degree quite some years ago right about 15 years ago and and at that time I
actually had a kind of a positive view of what a GMO was GMO stands for
genetically modified organism sure right and the concept behind GMOs was was a
really grand concept and that they want to modify existing crops to make them
Hardy and disease resistant and super crops to help feed the world so that you
wouldn’t have the famine and hunger that you see in numerous parts of the world
today sure sounds really good yeah it’s very noble very noble I was totally on
board with that cause until I started my research and so much has come out even
since then but the research was that sir especially one main company around the
world is really known for this and the big thing is is they start they started
splicing different genes into different plants so for example say they want
soybeans to have partyer stalks so that they would stand up to harvesting better
they might splice in a gene from the peanut plant okay so this would make the
soy plant stronger the only problem with that is is it starts changing all the
DNA of the original plants so that you start losing your heirloom properties
and hybrids don’t reproduce it sure it’s high bred has one season that’s it so
you can never regenerate seed okay I want you not that you can never
regenerate your own seed with hybrid seed so if you’re trying to be
self-sustaining you can’t do that it won’t work
then the other problem is you know we saw a huge uptake in people that had
allergies to things they never had allergies to before but if you take
someone and give them up you know soy from
ants that had a peanut gene sliced into them and they happen to be allergic to
peanuts guess what I’m gonna be allergic to this soy sure so there was a lot of
stuff that came into that and you know in the end of the day it was not a
better thing it’s actually contaminated a lot of our food sources as you can see
it does not solve the world’s famine issues it’s actually created a lot of
worse issues and has created a food monopoly and that always concerns me
because whoever controls your food controls you so yeah and they’re not
they’re not happy with independent producers let’s put it that way so
gotcha okay well yes I understand there’s a whole political side to to non
GMO but it’s not healthy it’s it’s you know you’re taking a lot of risk on and
that’s the worst thing you know if stuff was we had labeling laws changed here in
this country where they can now mask that then that was part of the move on
the political side of this that you don’t know what you’re buying you you
know the consumer they don’t want the consumer to be educated so I don’t even
have necessarily a choice to know what I’m ingesting you know if I don’t want
that thing or if I’m concerned about that thing or if I’m even allergic to
that thing sure so that’s another reason I’m really big about trying to raise
your own and source locally no your comes from I we have a with a local food
market here it’s not a farmers market but it is a local food market and and I
love going over there and yes the food I it goes bad faster because they don’t
have as you know it’s not it’s not genetically engineered at all to be
preserved on a truck for a very long time you know but you buy what you need
and it’s cheaper and it’s local and we we like that um I always tease Jerome B
farm that he needs to send me honey or the the honey that he sent me doesn’t
help my allergies because I have difference I
have different flowers over here than he has you want honey to help your
allergies you have to have local honey because they are getting the pollen in
your area that you’re reacting to and that’s what will help build your
immunity yeah and sorry I had heard that and I was like all I have honey oh wait
it’s Oklahoma honey it won’t be Missouri I think that won’t be helpful that was
fun um all right let me see what was my next
oh I wanted to talk about family dinners and you talked a lot about traditions on
your channel and how do you think the family dinner and meal traditions have
changed in the last few years I have a strong opinion on this but I would love
to hear your your thoughts about how the family dinner has changed in the last
few years due to schedules possibly or the um or food just the the availability
of food maybe oh there’s a whole lot of factors go into it
one is scheduling I see that you know and I see this even in my own family a
lot of times kids are over schedule parents are over scheduled dinners
aren’t family dinners aren’t necessarily a priority anymore
then there’s the factor if you’re trying to feed different people at different
times that becomes cumbersome and then the big thing to me and one of the
reasons I show cooking from scratch is because there’s just a whole lot of
people that don’t know how to cook at this point dance they seriously know I
know it crew up throwing stuff in a microwave and the concept of actually
cooking blows their mind well like I said I cook all the time I didn’t know
stock I was like I ply that in a box it comes in a box for the grocery store
that’s what happens but between you and Howie from food forest permaculture I’m
getting more educated it’s helping so there I don’t so so the thought of them
I don’t think even knew it was knew it was an option and you know if you
there are a lot of blended families and stuff if you didn’t grow up with that it
might not be something that you had an opportunity to even partake in but we
did and I’m a big believer in it and like I just did
I don’t like smalls we had big Sunday dinner out there and we can’t do that
all the time we’re trying to do it monthly because you know she’s getting a
lot of older and stuff oh we don’t know you know they’ll be with us and you know
I will tell you that that statistically families that try to make it a priority
to at least have a couple nights a week a sit-down dinner all together I usually
do better with communication issues and just family than life for all because
everybody can finally come together as a unit and not be all over the place and
we get so we get so harried and I mean I know it’s it’s it’s tough even with my
schedule with with Mike and mine stuff but we still that’s one of the reasons I
make it a priority you know if I know where your priorities are because you
make stuff happen that you really feel is important to happen sure and it’s
amazing how much food brings us together you know yeah that that’s one of those
things that you know families have grandma’s recipe hey this is how my
grandma made turkey and dressing you know or you know those are the things
that we bond over and so I think that that would help a whole lot of things if
we if we sat down and had family meals that’s part of the reason I came to work
at home is because Matt and I get to eat breakfast together now and we get to eat
dinner together and that’s that’s been huge for our family so um let’s see you
just got to be on TV on live TV not only YouTube live but TV so can you do you
want to talk a little bit about your interview on TV oh that was something
else that was really interesting because uh
he had scoped me out a year before asking me on the show and it’s a
regional it’s a regional TV station and they have a segment every Monday through
an hour long called PA live and they feature all kinds of PA people artists
singers authors local businesses and organizations chefs restaurants and I
was their first youtube person that they’ve ever asked on the show way to
represent yep they he had scoped me out a year before he actually the anchor of
that is new to the area he came here sneaking around 18 months ago from Las
Vegas scope when he knew you got the job here northeastern Pennsylvania for this
show he started scoping out people to have on the show back then and he looked
up Pennsylvania cooking and of course I come near the top of the list with that
but he was looking for you know different cooks and stuff to represent
the area and there really wasn’t a whole lot of other people doing what I do and
actually cooking from scratch not know I mean there’s cooking every day cooking
know if you need to use canned stuff or box or whatever
absolutely for convenience but I mean I was doing the real recipes from the
region which was kind of a cultural historical thing is I that’s that’s so
any like and he said he liked you liked my own her personality wow that was
bossy and sassy I think is what he said you are scoffs and sassy I would say the
same thing that’s awesome well congratulations on that and thanks sir
representing for all of YouTube all of us youtubers I I just pulled up
your your YouTube page and I just wanted people to just take a look at some of
these recipes that you’ve been making and um I I think that the best cornbread
is really the best cornbread and um but I use that recipe fairly often I just
enjoyed the bacon fried rice um one the other day I never can keep up
with everything all the time yeah I love your your channel and I love
like venison corndogs who does that you know nipple Oh
so yeah that’s that’s awesome so do you have a favorite recipe that you make
that you’re just like oh this is this is if I’m gonna make something this is what
I want to introduce people to my channel so that Mike my probably one of Mike’s
favorites is is the lasagna he loves my lasagna Brianne my one of my favorites
is probably my chicken and waffles that’s one of my favorites but it’s you
know it’s hard it’s hard to pick some of these recipes oh my gosh you have so
many Oh mini and there’s favorites and my macaroni and cheese is another one of
my favorites yeah that’s just wonderful dad’s peanut butter cookies oh my
goodness I’m just every time I come I’m like oh I’m so hungry so hungry what am
I gonna do but yes so if you want to cook anything
you can pretty much check with Helga and she will have a recipe for it if you
have any questions about Dutch oven cooking Hauge is another place to go
there too um so can you get can you talk about your cast iron collection here at
the very end of our show I would yeah so I grew up with cast iron my mom still
has some of my grandmother’s pieces including some old P quests and
Griswolds and then I got back into it I was kind of away from my boys had cast
iron I really got back into it when I got I didn’t like Teflon and the
artificial coatings I know you’re the healthiest thing for people and you know
cast iron treated well and seasoned well as the original nonstick pan so I really
got back into it and really hauled out my my cast iron years ago
just kept adding to my lovely collection and then my my best friend when her
father passed away their in their old milk house and butcher shop was a load
of old Griswold and Erie’s and Marietta’s they’ve just been sitting
there for the years and she said I don’t want them to be lost to the family but I
would like to see them you know reconditioned and used and so they’ve
been gifted to me and one day you know they’ll go on and her family but in the
meantime their mind is they go reconditioned them yeah I’ve gone and
reconditioning a stuff so I’ve got I’ve got quite the collection going at this
point that’s awesome that’s fun I did a cast-iron show a few weeks ago and had
all of our cast iron laid out on a table behind us and one of them fell off the
table it was a very loud clunk but fun we cook on cast-iron everyday here at
our house so and you’ve seen our Dutch oven cooking and stuff in our in our
tubers chopped that we did last last year that was already a year ago I can’t
even believe it I’m really flies that was fun to do that was a fun that
was we should do it again sometime I have to work on that well those are all
the questions I had would you like to say anything about your YouTube channels
who are wonderful viewers here you know to stay tuned you
know the holidays are coming up so I always try to add more to my holiday
series I did a carnival series here for this summer and I’ll keep that going
every year but as we go into fall here some more of those recipes and
especially the holiday recipes are coming out and I’m pretty excited this
year because I actually have some recipes from my mom’s side of the family
that I was just gifted with that I didn’t know like cousin Alton Arizona
had so we’ve been sharing those and it’s exciting for me because I had a lot of
Mike’s family’s recipes and I had some of my father’s I didn’t have hardly
anything from my mom’s side and now I have though
bringing them in and so I’m excited to share that with with folks here going
into this holiday season coming up awesome well thank you for being here
today I’m looking forward to all of your holiday recipes coming up and uh thanks
thanks so much it’s been an honor to have you
well thanks so much for having me kay you guys have a great Channel and I’m so
happy to be a part of it oh well thanks thanks I just um like I said I’m honored
you’ll hang out for just a second I’ll finish out the show all right guys thank
you for being here today for foodie Friday with Helga from Helga’s
Pennsylvania cooking I need you to do three things for me today one if you
enjoyed this show please share it with someone else who would enjoy cooking
from scratch and learn a little bit more about food as well as come back and
leave a comment below that’ll let YouTube know that we’re doing something
that you like to make sure that you run over and watch a video or two from Helga
and mention that you found her on Happy Trails hiking and three go out and live
the life you love today and remember you are not replaceable thanks everybody