My seed order just arrived! Yes, I procrastinated a bit this year in getting my order in. Each year I like to try one thing new, this year its the Thai Red Roselle. Anyone grown it? Have any suggestions what to make with it? Other than teas and jams.
I am planning to try a lot of container gardening this year. Any advice?
In case you can’t read the packages:
Corn Strawberry Popcorn- great for kid harvesting, popcorn, and decorating
Country Gentlemen Sweet Corn- this one has mixed reviews, will try it this year and see
Little Marvel Garden Pea- it’s a bush bean, with a heavy yield. Going to try it in containers
I had a very hard decision to make this week. Harder than any that I have had in a long time. We had to break up with our CSA, which provided us with our meats, eggs, breads, fruits and vegetables. It was a very hard, sad day. When we signed up over a year ago now it was conveinent. My husband was working in the city so he could pick it up on the way home. Then my husband lost his job, relocated out of the city for his new job, and it became my responsibility to drive in the 45+ minute drive each way to pick up. Occasionally he would say he could do it and then get tied up at work and unable to pick up. After this last time I realized it wasn’t fair to us or to them to continue on this way.
I began researching CSA’s closer to home. None will ever hold a candle to the fondness I have for our previous one, but does anyone get over their first love. I found a farm that will hopefully fill our need. They are looking to expand what they currently provide, produce and eggs, into meat, dairy, breads, etc. Maybe I will be able to get involved more at the farm since it is closer or help them find opportunities. Who knows. Our new CSA starts in April. It delivers to our doorstep so no more worrying over who will find the time to go pick it up. And it is from a farm about 10 miles from our home so it really is more local.
Find a CSA, farm stand, farmers market, etc that works for you. There are many popping up every where. Perhaps contact an established one and see if you get a group of people signed up can you create a pick up spot more conveinent for you. Many accept SNAP so great, local food can be had. If you can’t find something now, keep checking back this is a growing movement and many more are popping up all the time.
Here are a few resources to help you find your local food:
And there are many more specific websites by state if you google your area.
I love making dips, hummus’, condiments, anything that can have something dunked into it. And before you judge this combination let me tell you this is one of my best ideas ever. It is addictive. I am eating and typing and eating and typing….
This idea was inspired by the edamame beans in our USA (CSA) pick up from Farm to Family. Oooh! I feel a hummus coming on. Great for lunches for school with my kid. Great for me to snack on. Awesome. I usually use peas in this dip, but when seasonally eating you have to look around at what you have. Butter beans. I have butter beans. And an idea for a dip was born. I may never use peas again….at least not until spring anyways.
This is a taste as you go recipe. So taste! It is great from beginning to end. In fact I was half way thru and having to slap my boys wrists to stop dipping into it.
1 cup of shelled edamame beans (more or less is fine)
2 cups of butter beans (more or less to make up for what you have on edamames)
6 cloves garlic, chopped.
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar (or lemon juice or some acid in your kitchen, you may want more depending on the kick you want)
1/2 cup or more of olive oil (keep on adding as you mix in other ingredients to get your palate pleasing consistancy)
1 hand full of cilantro, chopped finely (your hands can start small and add more as you desire)
1 hand full of mint, chopped finely (again play with it, go small and add as you taste)
1 tsp of ground cumin
1 tsp of ground corriander
salt and pepper to taste
First boil a salted pot of water. Add both beans and cook for 5 minutes. Drain. And put in a food processor. Start to puree. Adding garlic, cumin, corriander, and liquids until you have a desired consistancy.
Move dip into a bowl. Stir in herbs. Salt and pepper to taste- you can also add more vinegar here if desired to punch it up.
Eat off spoon, on crackers, in pita, with fruit, on a sandwich as a spread, the options are endless. Just enjoy!
Oh it’s delicious! Easy! And leaves leftovers- if you don’t go for 2nds and 3rds- for later meals! This whole meal cost $3.45 and will feed 4. Yep, that’s right.
First you need to make polenta (or hominy if you want white fries vs yellow). Then grease a 9×9 baking pan and pour the polenta in. Chill. While that’s chilling. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Take 3 delicata squash, cut off the ends, halve them, clean out centers. Then slice into 1/2 inch moons. Toss in olive oil, salt, and pepper and place on a single layer on a large baking sheet. Cook for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown and melt in your mouth tender. While that’s roasting start your gravy. Melt 2 T butter, add 3 T flour, mix into a roux. Add 1 cup stock, stirring as you mix. Bring to a strong simmer and let thicken while you heat 2 cups of vegetable oil in a deep sauce pan. While that is heating move onto the polenta that is now chilled. Cut into 9 pieces (3×3 each). Then grease a baking pan with olive oil. Put each piece on baking sheet. Drizzle over top some olive oil. Put in oven and flip in 8-10 minutes, cooking for a total of 16-20 minutes. While that is cooking, slice a whole white onion into 1/16 inch slices with a mandolin or sharp knife. In small bunch fry onions until golden brown and drain on paper towel. Those should be finishing right as everything in the oven is finishing and within 35-40 minutes you have an amazing dinner! You can feed this to company and they will be wowed. My kid loves this dinner.
Ahhhhhh….the summer humidity has given was to cool mornings, dew on the grass, and apples and pumpkins are begging to make their way into your meals. Apples will wait for another post because today it’s all about breakfast with pumpkin.
Pumpkin French Toast
and make your own pumpkin puree
Pumpkin Doughnuts (or muffins)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 3/4 cups + 2 T all-purpose flour
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a doughnut pan or muffin tin.
Beat everything except flour until smooth. Add flour. Mix until smooth.
Fill each well about 2/3 full.
For normal size doughnuts bake 15-18 minutes, mini 8-11 minutes. For normal size muffins bake 23-25 minutes, mini 14-17 minutes.
When slightly cooled toss in a mixture of 1/3 cup sugar, 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/2 tsp nutmeg, 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon to coat.
Pumpkin French Toast
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 tsp cinnamon
1 pinch nutmeg
1 pinch ginger
8 slices thick bread
2 T butter
Beat eggs, pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg together in a bowl. Dip bread slices in until well covered on both sides.
Melt 1 T butter in a skillet over medium heat. Place bread slices, in batches, into skillet and cook until golden brown on both sides. Add more butter between batches as needed.
Drizzle with warm maple syrup and dust with cinnamon/powdered sugar, enjoy!
1 1/2 c milk
1 c pumpkin puree
2 T vegetable oil
2 T apple cider vinegar
2 c all purpose flour
3 T brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground all spice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
In a large bowl mix: milk, pumpkin, vegetable oil, cider vinegar, and egg together.
In a separate bowl mix: flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and salt together.
Mix flour mixture into pumpkin mixture until just combined.
Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Using 1/4 c batter per pancake, brown on both sides.
Serve with warm maple syrup drizzled over.
Make your own Pumpkin Puree
2 small pumpkins (not the tiny ones, but slightly larger than a softball)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cut off the top of pumpkins, as close to the stem as possible.
Cut in half. Scoop out the innards- save those seeds to roast!
Place on a baking sheet, skin side down.
Bake for 45 minutes or until fork tender.
When removed from oven, skin should be easy to remove. Peel off- careful! don’t burn yourself, use a large knife if neccesary.
Add de-skinned pumpkin chunks to a food processor, a few at a time, and process until smooth. Depending on the pumpkin you may need to add water, 1 T at a time, so your puree is not too dry. If you have water pumpkin, use a cheese cloth to strain.
To store, get freezer bags add a cup of puree to each bag, flatten, seal, date/label the bag, and freeze in a nice stack.
Easy and no more canned pumpkin!
Want more Pumpkin? Try these posts: