Indy Style

Plant-Based Diets with Jackfruit Carnitas Tacos: We welcome CHEF AMY back to our kitchen!

Plant-Based Diets with Jackfruit Carnitas Tacos: We welcome CHEF AMY back to our kitchen!

You may have seen the funny looking fruit in the grocery store – but do you actually know what to do with one? We’re talking JACKFRUIT!

It’s been a while, but Chef Amy von Eiff, A Cut Above Catering & Classes, is BACK in our kitchen with a fun twist on a healthy New Year’s Resolution, especially when it comes to plant-based diets.

Plant-Based Diets with Jackfruit Carnitas Tacos: We welcome CHEF AMY back to our kitchen!

Vegan / Gluten-Free
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 can jackfruit (20 ounces) in water or brine
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1-2 teaspoons chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
(depending on how spicy you like it!)
olive oil and salt, as needed
for serving: tortillas, beans, cabbage, radishes, cilantro, limes, whatever taco toppings you
● Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the thinly sliced
onion and saute for 4-5 minutes, until softened and lightly caramelized.
●Meanwhile, shred the jackfruit (if yours doesn’t come already shredded) – it should pull
apart easily into shreds that look like pulled chicken. If there are any round knobby
pieces in there, or any of the core that doesn’t shred the same way, they’re totally fine.
The texture and flavor are no different, and you won’t notice them once everything’s
● Add the jackfruit, cumin, chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, and chipotle peppers to
the pan. Stir to evenly distribute the spices and cook for another 4-5 minutes, until the
jackfruit is slightly crisped on the edges. Season with salt, to taste.
● Serve with all your favorite taco toppings – make sure to include some beans in your
tacos for protein; even though jackfruit looks a lot like meat, it only has a tiny bit of
4 servings

Come see A Cut Above at the Indy VegFest March 29, 2020 – Bankers Life

A Cut Above Cooking Class – New Year-New You!
Thursday, January 30, 2020 6:30-9:00pm

Class Website: New Year – New You! Healthy Plant-Based Cooking Class
Corporate Website: A Cut Above Catering, Classes & Events


Hamilton County’s ‘Wellness Unit’ part of nationwide effort to improve mental health among officers

NOBLESVILLE, Ind. (WISH) — An initiative to improve employee well-being at the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office is among a spate of efforts across the nation to address mental health concerns among officers.

Sheriff Dennis Quakenbush announced the department’s new “Wellness Unit”  — devoted to the physical, mental and spiritual health of its deputies, correctional officers and civilian employees — Friday in a Facebook post.

“Our guys really care about the public,” he said Monday in an interview with News 8. “When you see somebody who’s injured or victimized, it really impacts us… We’re only human.”

The Wellness Unit launched in January with funding approved by county council members and commissioners.

Appointments are held off-site at undisclosed locations to protect the privacy of employees. Supervisors are not briefed on which employees seek counseling or what they discuss during sessions.

Information gathered during counseling sessions will not be used to demote or discipline employees, and will only be disclosed if required by law, including when somebody poses an immediate danger to themselves or others.

The department’s entire staff will receive training related to suicide prevention, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, critical incidents, addiction, mindfulness and officer wellness, the sheriff said.

Nearly 1 in 4 police officers has thoughts of suicide at some point in their life, according to the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI); the suicide rate for police officers is four times higher than the rate for firefighters.

Years of daily exposure to stress, trauma and tragedy can have other devastating consequences if appropriate coping skills are not developed, according to Susan Sherer-Vincent, a licensed clinical social worker, certified alcoholism counselor and licensed marriage and family therapist involved in launching the Wellness Unit.

“Think of the hurricanes that come in, in Florida, and think of the palm trees where they bend,” she explained. “But then, what happens afterwards? They go back up. That’s called resilience. We want our officers to bend, not break.”

Until approximately 3 to 5 years ago, officers were often conditioned to “pull [themselves] up by the bootstraps and go to the next call” instead of addressing personal struggles, Sherer-Vincent said.

Cultivating resiliency can be difficult within a law enforcement culture that equates mental health challenges with “weakness,” she said.

“[Officers] are trained to have the warrior mentality,” Sherer-Vincent told News 8. “Truly, they would have been made fun of [in the past for seeking counseling].”

She compared strong, silent officers with underdeveloped coping skills to California’s famed redwood trees.

“They’re pretty sturdy. But what would happen if you took an ax and hit those every single day, day after day, for years? They would eventually fall,” she said.

Quakenbush credits his wife, church and non-law enforcement friends with providing “a really good support system.”

“But sometimes, you need a professional,” he said, urging employees to “talk through” negative emotions instead of turning to alcohol and other substances for temporary relief.

Several internal cases that resulted in disciplinary action during his year-long tenure as sheriff may have been prevented with wellness-focused intervention, Quakenbush said.

He was unable to comment on personnel matters. 

Sources within the department indicated some of the cases involved employees with substance abuse issues that had escalated over time, possibly as a result of work-related stress that had gone unaddressed. 

“I wouldn’t say that [disciplinary action] was happening often,” Quakenbush told News 8. “But seeing it happen and knowing that we probably could have done something about it made it impactful and something that we wanted to make a priority.”

Hamilton County announced its Wellness Unit days after New York City police officials revealed plans to hire a team of psychologists to combat a spike in officer suicides.

On Feb. 13, Indianapolis police officials said they planned to swear in the department’s first full-time therapy dog by the end of March.

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