Terry - thanks for the new thread! I so enjoy this one. I have never cooked fajita's - I guess its mostly chopping time? May have to give them a try this summer.
I have a big pot of chili cooking away in the slow cooker and a giant pot of chicken stock simmering on the stove. Will finish the stock and make the soup tonight. I need to get all this stuff cooked so I can clear out the refridgerator! Its packed.
Celene - I love sour cream baked goods of any sort. I bet the guys will really enjoy those! Do you have a graduate in the group?
One of my staff is graduating, but I made the coffee cakes because my husband is a supervisor and a lot of his officers are going to have a long, hot day directing traffic for a lot of frustrated drivers who are not familiar with the area.
Fajitas are one of those foods we never tire of. Then again, you can make fajita fillings any way you can imagine.
We had cabbage and onions browned in olive oil, butter and garlic, then tossed with farfalle, peas and Parmesan for dinner last night. There was salad too. Tonight we will have griddled chicken breasts, bacon and hard boiled eggs sliced over greens, tomatoes and olives. Homemade croutons. Something like a Cobb salad only I'm using feta instead of blue cheese.
Celene and Tammy, you both sound so industrious in the kitchen. The day flies by when the garden is up and running here. I have to make time to cook. Much needed rain is helping keep me indoors right now.
I am often in the garden at daybreak. When it's heading towards noon and the temperature is pushing into the nineties it's time to come in, eat and find things to do in the house. We usually go back out in the garden late in the day to tie up loose ends. Since we are not here all the time we try to make the most of the time we are here. Meanwhile, I still think you and Tammy are very industrious. Most of my time spent in the kitchen is when I work, entertain or cold weather.
Nah, I just use time wisely. While paella simmered tonight, I cut up a salad, made a fresh vegetable pickle with fennel, radishes, and cucumber, and washed and dried some strawberries. I steamed the two chicken breasts that I didn't use in the paella, so I can make curried chicken salad later in the week--using celery I diced today when I cut up veg for paella. So, on chicken salad night, it'll take me five minutes to finish dinner.
And I went out to see about weeding and it was hot, muggy, and skeeters & gnats out in force. So instead I cooked while watching so movies I had on my DVR today. I'm cooking now so I can have everything ready when I leave to visit dad in a couple weeks. Will be out of town for a long weekend next week.
I got this nutty idea to build a scarecrow using an old satellite dish base. I am growing her a "skirt" of morning glories. Guess you could say her skirt is hand made. :) The challenge was fixing her head on to the base. I was out there in the frying heat, along with the mosquitoes and gnats, hand sewing tie downs for her head.
Cute scarecrow. So sexy! I have a big fish I'd like for her to meet -- I call her Madame. I am not at home so can't upload a photo now. GOOD JOB I was wondering what you decided to do for the base. All she needs is a supersized basket made from chicken wire sitting next to her or attached to her 'skirt' to grow bright annuals out of.
Re Dinner: Ham Sandwiches and Creme/ Tomato Basil Soup. Getting ready for vacation and busy week at work... no energy to plan and cook.
But I made a crab and clam sauce a few days ago and we have been nursing that. I don't like to keep that more than a few days in fridge and so yesterday had to toss the leftovers.
Linden - I made up the recipe. I used pork - cut into smallish strips, browned in a pan. Then put diced onions, red pepper, a hot pepper, pinto beans and homemade tomato sauce & spices (salt, pepper, chilli power - not too hot 'cause its for dad) together in the pot. I also added a can of diced tomatoes in sauce after an hour or so 'cause it didn't look thick enough. I had the crock pot on a couple hours at night, let cool over night and finished in another 4-5hrs. (better I'm sure to do in one session)
Yum on Larkie's choice - hibachi grills are so much fun!
I have no idea...but I'll need to make it quick if I'm going to have it ready before we leave for swim practice this evening. Methinks I'll be grocery shopping while she swims because we are seriously out of fresh veggies and meats around here. No maters here yet - too hot for them to set.
Picked a quart of fresh strawberries this morning so we'll have strawberry shortcake tonight. That should stave off any grousing about the leftover sirloin tip I did in the slowcooker on Saturday. I don't use the slowcooker often but we were gone to an RU all day and it seemed like a good idea. Added an envelope of onion soup mix but after I browned the roast I sliced up a fresh onion in the pan, carmelized them with a couple of garlic cloves, S&P, and it turned out meltingly tender and tasty. Garlic mashed potatoes and fresh asparagus with hollandaise finished it off and there's enough of everything left for another meal.
Our fruit trees are loaded with cherries and plums, and the pears will be along shortly.
well... I'll be happy to help with those leftovers! Can't believe there'd be grousing about that dish on a second time around!!!!
I have a couple big bunches of broccoli so will probably have something with broccoli as the center piece. I'm off for a rock garden conference in NH Thurs morning so its just two dinners left before I'm gone. DH does well with leftovers but is not often motivated to prepare veggies on his own. :-)
Broccoli and macaroni-- an ols italian staple..just like cauliflower and macaroni and peas and macaroni ( but that get some meat).
Broccoli and macaroni is sort of soupy (actually it is a thick soup/stew and perfect for a huge italian catholic family on a small budget) but next day fried in a little olive oil and ...and browned and crisped at the edges...with a little bit of fresh shaved parm on top...whooo wheeee.
We enjoy pasta and peas that way with a variety of veggies. I just posted a dish this past week that had browned cabbage and onions, oil, garlic and Parmesan with pasta and peas. It's also a good leftover fried in oil with a few eggs on top. Make sure to add some fresh basil or thyme. Cook the whites by covering the last few minutes but leave the yolks soft to pop over the top. Cracked pepper and an additional Parmesan topper makes for a perfect Italian/Jewish brunch on a budget. :>) There are Spanish-style dishes that use these basics but substitute medium grain rice, such as Valencia, for pasta and Manchego for the Parmesan. We love that for brunches in cool weather.
Tonight's dinner is a cold roasted chicken and salad. Summer salads here are kitchen sink varieties; meats, cheeses, eggs, breads, olives, pickles, etc..
I got a hankering for onion pie and I am going to make it soon. Sweet texas onions, cheddar cheese, and sour creme ,,,baked in a pie shell...sometimes I'll add a little fresh crisped bacon for grins and giggles. Alas so fattening.
Fry as in stir fry . Naturally sweet . Last night , we had T-bonewith lots of minced garlic and the drippings were left in skillet with canned carrots added and brown sugar for carmel flavor . I don't usually use canned carrots in a fry but didn't have fresh so it was decent anyway as a side .
Great minds think alike - we had stir fry last night too. All veggie with 3 kinds of summer squash, onions, garlic, and ww noodles, fresh thyme from the garden and a garden tomato (Atkinson) tossed in at the end. 5-minute bread.
Tonight the plan is for light since it is a late night arrival home. Sliced mozzeralla, fresh basil, mixed greens, black olives, thin sliced red onions, and cantelope all drizzled with a good sticky honey and balsamic and offered with a hunk of bread.
My hubby will have a few pieces of rolled honey baked ham with that.
Missed a call from youngest son and now we can't get hold of him. Bet he was calling to come over for dinner and a hug. :>)
SO grilled extra country rib strips last week and froze them. They're going into homemade Q sauce to simmer with onions and peppers and then on top of Mexican rice (my spice blend). Sauteed garlicky spinach with crumbled feta is on the menu too. Costco has huge bags of spinach. I'll saute the entire bag, use some for dinner, save some for a quiche and the rest for a veggie lasagna. I'm multitasking like Celene and Tammy.
I love those big bags of spinach. Got one last week, cooked up some bacon, got rid of most of the grease, then quick saute'd it, and threw the crunchy bacon on top. Asked DH how he liked it, and he said, 'As opposed to how?" and people wonder why I am sick of cooking.
Tonight will be a quick stir fry but I forgot to pick up broccoli...Ahh well, if it needs more crunch, I'll hack up a couple of big radishes.
No, this is local NJ lobster. The fellow who owns the restaurant has his own fishing boats so he has easy access to them. He has charged $21.95 for a 1 1/4 lb. lobster with sides for years now.
The ice cream was good too. Some sort of cappucino with fudge and Heath bar bits, kind of like coffee Heath bar crunch. The place was just over the bridge from Sea Isle City, where we had dinner.
After we got home we went and did June's frog count. You drive a route one time each during three windows - March, April, and June - and stop for five minutes at each predetermined site, listen for frogs, identify the species, and provide a code for whether there are few enough to make out individuals or a lot of them. The days are so long now that we only just got done; you have to start your count no earlier than 30 minutes after sunset.
We need to figure out how to grow lobsters in our pond. I'd settle for shrimp but be even more thrilled if we could farm scallops. So what was the frog count? A big reason I hate to turn on the air is because we love to listen to our frogs by the pond at night. There are some lusty guys down there.
Made a trip to the market and are having mussels marinara tonight. An arugula and kalamata olive salad with SO's freshly grilled red peppers and a fresh loaf to dunk in the broth.
Laurel, I don't know why the frog count was down so badly. This is the first time we've gone this late in June, and it's been quite hot and dry; maybe the vernal pools have dried up. Most of our ten sites had nothing; there were a couple of Northern Grey Treefrogs, a couple of Green Frogs, and some Carpenter Frogs. That was it. Didn't get home until 11.
Normally we have Southern Leopard Frogs and Green Frogs in our pond, but this year none so far. Once in a while we get bullfrogs, which DH dispatches because they're a non-Pinelands species and they eat up everything else. I suspect a garter snake is also snacking on anything that tries to move in, though.
I love frogs so much I recorded a frog chorus for my phone ringtone. You should see the looks I get when my phone goes off. Tough. I prefer the gentle croaking of frogs to Andre Segovia playing Bach preludes at maximum phone tone blast.
Mary McP, he went there with some people from his t'ai chi class. This is the second time they've gone. He says it's gorgeous.
What a cool idea, Laurel. We have lots of frog calls on tape but I don't know how I'd get them onto my phone. I'll bet my granddaughter would know, though.
With one of my first phones I had Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, which I liked because I'm a portrait artist.
We had leftover barbecued pork with Zatarain's gumbo mix tonight; it was a long day. GD's second day off school; I wanted to keep her occupied so she helped me go food shopping and later we put Thompson's sealer on the bench for the pond and on some of the other wooden outdoor furniture. It's a lot faster with two! But she still had plenty of time to read, text, and go on Facebook.
Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition is one of my favorites. I love those big gongs at the end... If I knew how to put a music ringtone on my cell, it would be "Send in the Clowns" LOL
I can't fathom what it must take to tell one frog singing from another. This year I am hearing more (at least more since I've been here) along the creek in front of the house; they just sound like baritone and bass bull frogs to my untrained ear.
I've spent the last 2-3 days researching some of the many tasty nutritional weeds growing in my yard since I have an abundance. I'm making some winter "vitamin" tinctures from a few... and a Chickweed Chimichurri.
Judy Collins performed in the auditorium/theater of the local county college a number of years ago. When the concert began the whole place was dark, and suddenly her voice rang out singing "Amazing Grace." Gradually she was illuminated by a single spot of light. It was truly goose-bumps-engendering.
My granddaughter helped me install Loggins and Messina's "House at Pooh Corner" on my phone as her ringtone. That has always been her song, for me.
I suppose I should do something with all of my lambs' quarters but I'm not sure what. Chickweed has kind of been and gone around here.
So easy, and good with everything, much like basil pesto. It's a great use for reseeding-everywhere cilantro, or some that's going to bolt. It freezes well, too. I make it pretty much like basil pesto, and I sometimes add ginger, lemongrass, and galangal for a more Asian flavor, or leave it more plain. I use almonds or cashews instead of pine nuts. If I'm using the pesto right away, I'm likely to toss some lime juice in there, too. If you want it a little spicy, throw in a jalapeno (or pepper of your choice). You can stir this into steamed rice, with pasta, stirred into a bowl of ramen noodles (I'm not proud), or spread on bread, swirled on top of pinto beans, mixed with roasted vegetables, etc.
Thanks Celene. Today is mostly a kitchen day for me so I'll see if I can get some of that made up as well. I have lots of basil right now so am planning a big batch of basil pesto and a fresh batch of the 5-minute bread dough.
Tonight will be leftover roasted veggies with some sort of pesto ^_^ and probably bbq chicken, something cold on the side, maybe a slaw. Love this thread...I get so many good ideas for dinner.
I just found this and I'm jumping in! But, I'll be gone all next week. I'm new to gardening and am beyond passionate about it! I've found the answer to pleasing my family, freeing up my entire day, and providing a healthy, nutritious "boatload" of meals. MY SLOWCOOKER! One of my easiest, most well received recipes consists of - 5 pounds of boneless/skinless chicken thighs, one jar of any salsa, and 3 pkgs (4-5) links each of andouille or habanero chicken sausage (I slice it) . Throw it in, cook on low for 6plus hours and voila - dinner.
I serve with a mixed green salad, cornbread sometimes, and any "good" quality boxed rice pilaf - sometimes I sub canned, lite coconut milk for the water called for in the pilaf.
I have myself, two young teen boys and my husband, and although the food shrinks a bit, I usually have about a cup and a half of food left!
Had to use up 3 large on the bone chicken breasts. Threw them in the crockpot bones/skin and all. 2 onions coarsely chopped. Green pepper (wished I'd had more but used what I had ordinarily would use 2) 1/2 c. of red wine and a large can of crushed tomatoes. At about hour 3 I took the chicken breasts out they skin and bones came of easily, I gave them a quick chop to about 2 inch chunks and threw them back in for about another hour. I have some already cooked italian sausages that I will slice and add to it when I serve over pasta tomorrow. Just needed to get those chicken breasts used up! Tasted a couple bites and while it wasn't what I'd normally do for a cacciatore it'll work!
Larkie , you make me hungry for grilled Tomato slices with swiss cheese stacked on onion slices grilled first , for a topper.
slip that onto a toasted slice of Rye and I'm in hog heaven . That makes me hungry for a grilled Reuben , and that makes me hungry for a slice of chocolate cake with a big dip of vanilla ice cream .
We're going out for Mexican with one of his boys and thier kids and a pitcher of margaritas . yum
I got 3 large fennel bulbs at the farmer's market this morning. Until I decide how I want to prepare them, I cut off a few of the fronds to add to a Court Bouillion... Too bad the fronds have no flavor if they are dehydrated; I have LOTS! They smelled SO good bringing them home!
Since the Elders are flowering right now, I'm making a batch of Elder Flower 'Champagne' which will be a lovely fizzy drink in a tall glass with ice cubes in the hot days of July and August.
Wild! Actually I bought and planted one when I first moved here but it didn't do well.I think The Kid finally mowed it down this spring. I plan to try and start some from the wild bushes this year, and plant them right at the edge of the creek. They do best close to water. A spot where I pick berries has just a trickle of water running through it, maybe 3" deep. Plump and juicy berries!
My neighbor tells me that 25-30 years ago this creek in front of my house (and his) was lined with elders. Now there are houses with yards and hay fields that get mowed.
Bacon (Neuske's smoked applewood bacon) lettuce and tomato sandwiches on 12 grain artisan bread toasted golden. Cherry pie for dessert, using up the last of the pastry dough I made earlier in the week.
Today was a kitchen day with my new Cusinart food processor. Celene, I made the cilantro pesto. Wow! very good. I'll make cilantro rice next week. I have a bumper crop of habenero chiles and used two in each of the pesto's. Also have a bumper corp of basil so made basil pesto too and then, finally, a batch of salsa with [what's going to be a bumper crop of Atkinson] garden tomatoes, garden onions and more hab's.
Here in Phoenix, this is hibernation time...104° today. Turned on Sirius and started processing. Nice day.
Mary, I stir the pesto into rice after it steams, so it retains a fresh taste.
I love my Cuisinart more than it's right to love a food processor. I wore my last one out, and it got hard, hard use and it was the bottom of the barrel model, and it still took 18 years. I just got a new fancy high-power model last fall, when smoke came out of my old one. DH was afraid to be without the machine that makes latke, so he went out that day and bought me a nice new one.
LOL, Sally you are bad to the bone. Hope you saved DH a sip.
We are just now finishing baby backs on the grill. I made oven roasted fries with rosemary, garlic and sea salt. We've got feta, basil and tomatoes.
Meezers, I don't get making pastry in a Cuisinart though I've tried it several times and would rather hand cut it. It's so easy to make pastry with a pastry blending tool (either wire or blade) and such a mess to clean the Cuisinart bowl, multiple top parts and blade.
We decided to save the steaks for tomorrow - we're too tired to eat, although we'll probably graze. The day started bright 'n early with a garage/moving sale, then I moved purple irises (not too bad - just 10 pots) and waterlilies. Then I decided it was time to dig up and move my LA irises. Who knew a small bed could have so many rhizomes? Thank goodness middle son is helpful and handy - he ran the tiller to loosen the soil around the edge of the pond, then helped me plant them. Whew.
That's why I have a dishwasher. I used to use a pastry blender, but the Cuisinart is so quick, and I usually make enough for three shells, or one shell and one double crusted pie. I bake them ahead too, and freeze them so they are ready when inspiration strikes. And my crusts have l a r d in them so they are tasty!
Terry, I'd never heard of LA irises so I looked them up. Cool! Can't imagine hauling a tiller down the hill to our pond though.
Our day started bright and early too. The replacement dishwasher came. Funny, I forgot to load it and did the dishes by hand this evening. We were wanting to try it before the RU. Maybe the RU will be the test run.
Mary, parsley and arugula are also good prospects for pesto. You can vary the cheeses and nuts. Toasted walnuts are terrific, peanuts, cashews and almonds too. Pecorino and cotija are good cheeses to use instead of Parm. If you have Manchego or Swiss that got overly dry on the edges don't throw it out. Grate and use it as a pesto cheese. I use those single serve plastic cups in catering so there are always a bunch on hand. If you have some saved from takeout, pack your pesto in those cups and put them in a bag in the freezer. Then just pop a cup or two per pound of pasta or over veggies.
Thanks for the recipe and links, Darius. I have a passion for wild foods. It is blackberry time here. They are wicked to pick, but so delicious. I made Fruit Cocktail Snack Cake, but replaced the nuts called for with sweetened blackberries.
Sansai , my mom taught me to pick blackberries with out the hassel . Cut the top out of a gallon milk jug but leave all the handle on . Put a belt on and hang the jug in front . Get a stick about two foot long to move the berry runners out of the way of your picking hand and go after them . So easy . Enjoy those berries .I hang a jug for my blueberry picking too, just don't need the stick
Well, I made the court bouillon with fennel greens. They smell very different cooking! I was too tired to poach my mountain trout so hopefully that will be a big early supper meal today. There are enough fronds to make a fennel pesto... mine won't have any nuts because I cannot chew them.
1/3 cup pistachios, toasted
2-3 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
1 ounce (about ½ cup) freshly grated Parmesan
1 teaspoon salt
Ground black pepper, to taste
2 cups fennel fronds
about ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
juice of ½ lemon, or to taste
optional: 4-5 mint leaves, torn
Put the pistachios, garlic, cheese, salt, and pepper in a food processor. Pulse a few times to grind slightly.
Add fennel (and mint if using) to the food processor. With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil until the mixture is reduced to a paste and has a spreadable, but not greasy consistency. Taste and add salt if necessary. Squeeze in a little bit of lemon juice to taste.
Here's my first batch of elder flower 'champagne'... I need to find the rest of my bottles with bail tops.
Very nice, Darius. Bet that trout is going to be delicious too. You can't manage nuts that are pureed in the pesto? If you don't have a processor you could use a mortar and pestle.
I think I'd need two pitchers of margaritas to get up the courage for blackberry picking. They grow all along our back road here at Maypop. I get so chigger bit from those canes I can't stand it. We used to send the kids out with the milk jugs and while they were picking I'd make pastry dough. Then they'd come in and get to make their own personal pie. I'd use some for blackberry shortcake and, if they picked a ton, jam the rest.
Larkie, we will be picking the first yellow squash and zucchini today.
Ribs, potatoes, etc. last night was our Father's Day manly meal. Tonight we'll be having agedashi tofu and stir fried veggies.
We won't have wild blackberries here until late July - early August (usually). This will be the first year for fruits from my tame thornless blackberries... don't know when they ripen. I do have a few red raspberries beginning to ripen. Those will continue until September since I have 3-4 varieties. I won't have as many berries this year because I drastically thinned the beds. There are lots of berries now on the local native black raspberries, but they are the thorniest of all to pick, and small.
Laurel, I probably have a couple of zukes big enough to pick today... if I trudge out in the rain. Yum, even though the "yum" wanes as more and more zukes ripen.
Yes, I should use my mortar/pestle to pound pignolias so I can eat them. I actually have a brand new, unopened food processor I bought 2 years ago... Shamefully, I have no clue how to use it. I love the taste of pine nuts but don't have any in the freezer right now. I quit buying pistachios due to the poor quality of what I could get here.
Laurel, those individual take out cups are the perfect idea, especially since they have lids. I had already done the ice cube tray routine before I read that, will remember next time. All these different pesto's sound good but I'm intrigued by catnip pesto. Frankly, I didn't realize *people* ate catnip.
Be careful of pine nuts; if you eat the wrong kind they can cause a metallic aftertaste in the mouth which can linger for a very long time and make it unpleasant to eat. I got that kind once when Shoprite was out of their own brand, and it lasted a couple of weeks. Other people reported that their reaction lingered much longer and was much worse. Pine nuts distributed by a place in Clifton, NJ, and also some from Trader Joe's, seemed to be a problem. American pine nuts are fine.
Y'all are making me want blackberries now, used to pick them every year for jelly, jam, cobblers, etc.. My grandmother and I even made wine one year...Now I just eat off the canes, lol.. That's when they are the best.We have some around one of our ponds that are big as your thumb, but what a bear to pick and also have to watch very carefully for the Cottonmouths.
Maypop, I am headed to the squash field today, our crew will be loading our trucks for the week and I get more than I need from their culls.. Perfectly good to eat and freeze.. I hate waste.. My goats, guineas and chickens also get their share..
Darius, a food processor is my most used food prep appliance. They are very easy to learn. I too did not realize catnip was not just for cats and bees.
With all the reference to blackberry picking are we the only ones with a chigger problem in cane berries?
Larkie, didn't realize you have a big operation down there. We were hearing a few weeks ago that squash crops were being left to rot in the fields 'cause the crack down on migrants had left the farmers without workers to pick. That was supposed to make for expensive squash at the store this year.
I grew up with chiggers. Soon learned to dust pants legs and sleeve cuffs with powdered sulfur. No more polka-dotted body covered with clear nail polish!
Laurel, I found the video on using my food processor. Now I just have to get The Kid to hook up my VCR player so I can watch it. I bought it knowing it is very useful tool in the kitchen, and I already used my mini KitchenAid chopper a lot.
I don't know much about catnip except my cats love to wallow in the plant, which I grow just for them. Some years ago, friends tried smoking the catnip from my garden. They said it was nasty and not like pot at all. LOL.
Growing up in southeastern Colorado, I learned to enjoy locally harvested pinons in the shell. (We'd crack them with our teeth like sunflowers..only harder :-) It's a lot of work to get the nut that way, and my mom would probably have forbid eating them if hantavirus had been an issue back then (the whole pine nut-deer mouse-hantavirus thing is a little scary - especially if you're putting the whole - and possibly unwashed - nut in your mouth :-)
We had the steaks for lunch today - all three kids were here for Father's Day. Now to figure out dinner plans. Get done with one meal, it's time to start thinking where our next one is coming from.
Tomorrow night is monthly Bunco party and I'm hosting. I'm doing a huge batch of baked potatoes and setting up a fix-it-your-way potato bar. As long as I remember to start the taters on time, it's a piece of cake.
Maypop, yes we farm over 300 acres of our own, we do not use any immigrant workers, our help is all family or locals.. Our family farm has been here for almost 80 years.. We are know for local produce in a fairly large area. We are one of the few farms that has greens year round..A very expensive thing to do here in southwest GA..We also grow peanuts, soybeans, peas, tomatoes, peppers, corn. watermelon, squash along with the turnips, mustard and the favorite around here..collards..We rent out our cotton allotment.
In the last 5 years we have downsized from over a 1000 aces, counting rented farms.. My hubby and his brother are trying to get ready to retire someday, aka never...lol.. It has been a very hard life, but I would not trade it for anything in the world.
Larkie , friend , you have certainly put in your time . It is a hard life and my sweet, ex m in law started her family at 15 . went through all that cooking for the harvest crews , etc !Hopefully when the men retire , you can too ,you deserve it .
Pinoli used to be $12 for a big bag at Costco while very expensive everywhere else. About two years ago I went to grab a bag off the shelf and they were up to thirty two dollars! I don't know what happened there.
Terry, could you move after that steak lunch? I'd get real lazy. Lucky you for a day with the kids. Ours are scattered about. They did call though.
I grew up with palm trees and tropical plants, two blocks from the ocean, and dreamed of running away to live on a farm. The houses were so close (mostly apartments and duplexes) that you could smell dinner at the neighbor's house and hear conversations. This was before air conditioning so windows were open most of the year. Anyway, I dreamed of having dogs and horses, cows and sheep, ducks and chickens and growing all kinds of vegetables. I'd even have "overhauls" with stripes. In the books I read as a child every child grew up on a farm, picking wildflowers, jumping on their horses bareback and riding off into the woods, and eating fresh pie. Well, it never really happened except about thirty years later we bought Maypop and I started accumulating animals and cultivating the garden. Guess it was a scaled down dream come true. Our kids' city friends always called Maypop "the farm" because of the veggie garden and the animals but it is just a cottage in the hills with a garden. The kids' school used to do field trips from Atlanta to enjoy a day in the country and the animals. We only have dogs now but I do have a cherished pair of "overhauls" with stripes.
Somehow last night's dinner morphed into stir fried veggies and leftover mussels in a coconut curry sauce with Thai basil. I'd forgotten about the leftover mussels and thought they should be dealt with. We ate them over basmati rice. Tonight we'll have that tofu and something with zucchini, maybe fritters. I'm about to get slammed with zucchini. There was one a few days ago and now there are about ten or fifteen.
I read somewhere that you can actually dry really thick slices of zucchini to use in winter soups. Regular slices won't do the trick, they just dry into a thin green ring with an empty center. I haven't tried it but will since I have FOUR zucchini plants, enough to feed the neighborhood!
We had deer chili with organic cantaloupe, guacamole and chips, and a fresh raspberry pie for dessert. I only had one frozen pie crust and I don't do well making my own. I used my tried-and-true raspberry pie recipe but instead of a top crust I beat crême fraîche with 1/4 cup of sugar and then spread it over the chilled pie filling. It was out of this world! I like it better than the two-crust version; very yummy and decadent. We have tons of raspberries coming in the garden so I'm trying to find ways to use them, since we still have a bunch in the freezer from last year.
Must be pie night. We had shrimp salad, potato salad, grilled brats, and strawberry cream cheese pie. I cheated too, and used a chocolate cookie crust, mostly because I was lazy. The cream cheese is mixed with powdered sugar, and lines the crust, which is great if you use a regular pastry shell, as it doesn't get soggy. Then you cook your strawberries, (our were from our beds) and thicken with cornstarch, and fill up the shell. Takes a good four hours to set up properly, but it makes a super good pie.
We have been enjoying left overs from our RU for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It's been fantastic because we are freed up to plant all my RU gifts and work in the veggie garden until we drop. Summer produce is starting to pick up. We cut an old, diseased mulberry yesterday and spent hours hauling debris into the woods. It was about forty feet tall. There were two rewards. First, it opened up light on a section of a bank were I planted my new Heritage raspberry gifts. Secondly, we could pig out for lunch with impunity.
Boil you up some lasagna noodles(about 9 or 10)...drain and dry. Lay them out on waxed paper. Take approx. 32 ounces of your favorite sauce...spread about a cup or so in a dish.
Thaw and squeeze dry 10 oz frozen spinach
Spinach, 15 ounce ricotta, 1 cup mozzarella, one egg...add...some grated parmesan or any kind of cheese you like...parmesan reggiono is what I had on hand(about 1/2 cup)...some salt, coarse ground black pepper, some garlic powder if you want...some red pepper flakes if you want...some basil...really whatever you want to put in the mixture.
Put about 1/3 cup or so of spinach/cheese mixture close to one end of each noodle. roll up the noodle and place seam side down in dish. Pour the rest of the sauce over them...sprinkle some mozzarella...or again...any cheese you want over that...cover with foil and pop in the oven at 350 until good and bubbly...took mine about 40 minutes.
this is one of those recipes you could do just about any type of filling.
Pasta and tomato sauce with a dollop of ricotta tonight. -- not a lot of meat since I made the sauce with pork neck bones and pigs feet to keep it sweet and a few ox tail to make it dark and rich. Family won't eat the meat ( I will!) ---- made a nice mixed greens and apple salad to go with it, but the carrots were sort of bitter. Any tips on keeping/ buying sweet carrots? It is so hit and miss for me with carrots. Is it a freshness issue?
I have had baby carrots like sugar and next go around and same brand ...flat and bitter. Last week granddaughter had kids plate and the waiter brought her a dish if ice cold crisp big carrots...quartered...As sweet as sugar cane... Those carrots
(we were on a fishing wharf at a restaurant in north Ft. Myers Fla and it served farm to table produce) is what prompted me to get these for the salad. The very bitter carrots I had tonight were shredded and "organic."
Before I switched to organic, I noticed that carrots from Florida often had a bitter taste while those from California didn't. I am not sure why that is. It also doesn't explain why the same brand was so different for you with different batches.
I know from growing different veggies, fruits, etc that the amount of rainfall affects the sweetness/bitterness value. we have had a really really dry year and things have had more of a stronger, bitter taste.
Went outside and picked most of my dinner for tonight... haricot verts and zucchini to do in a brown butter sauce, and a free-range piece of chicken. I'm canning so not much time to cook an elaborate dinner.
Meezers, carbohydrates such as starches convert to sugar but not the other way around.
What is a baby carrot? Are they those cored things that come in a package? Those are not baby carrots, just full sized ones sent through a chopper/shredder. Missingrosie,there is no way to tell.
Darius, dinner at your place sounds great! Is there a chicken running around the yard missing a piece? Reminds me of a Gary Larson cartoon. lol I'm about to gear up for canning, ever ambivalent about that chore. So much produce, so little time.
This is my birthday week. I get a surprise dinner tonight. We were supposed to go out and party with friends tomorrow but I messed up my back yesterday so I'm celebrating with muscle relaxants.
You guys are so great! Thanks for the laughs (but you're killin' me) and the BD wishes.
Darius, I have a few Larson favorites. That one of the couple sitting in the restaurant with the sign over the kitchen doors advertising the frogs' legs special and the frog rolling out legless on a skateboard is one. Sick, I know. The other is the upside down parrot on a perch and the caption that it must be an inner ear problem. SO has Meniere's. We can relate. So the upshot to that chicken story, Darius, is there is no such thing as a "free range". Happy canning.
Have a happy natal day, Laurel, even if you have to postpone it until you are pain free. We drove down the road and had Chinese buffet. Unfortunately the cook we adored has gone and the new one isn't up to our expectations. I told them to find him and get him back. DH said, quoting an old friend, "You get one warning, and this is it."
we had sweet pig pizza from BJ's brewhouse in tyler. tonight will be pulled chicken from the slow cooker. I am starting my painting job in the bathroom today so the slow cooker can do all the work for me!
We had pulled pork w/cabbage last night. I have some if the freezer and some in the fridge for leftovers. We've got a few days of food for repeat meals (aka leftovers) so not a lot of cooking for a couple of days.
Celene - if you are still in "junior high boy" mode, did you hear a guy was charged with assault when he passed gas on a police officer? (I think it was West Virginia)
Thank you, thank you. Funny card, Darius. Wish I was in that party mood. I was going to slink back to Maypop today but between sensational and transfixing TV and promises of war su duck I'm staying put. I'm getting about slowly but the pain is wearing and I keep going back to bed. I'd rather be gardening.
GH the very idea of rolling around on anything brings tears to my eyes. This isn't sore muscle pain this is raging nerve pain. Laboring patients with back pain sometimes roll around on tennis balls. They work great for muscle discomfort.
Happy Birthday Laurel, hope your back is better soon!!
As to what's for dinner, it is supposed to be 105-107 today, so I'm figuring a marinated asparagus salad and perhaps just put some extra vegetables and shrimp on it. Yesterday was taco salad.
Darius, we're not supposed to discuss current events but suffice to say a certain trial is providing some distraction and pain relief. If you need expansion on that just DM.
EG, thank you for BD and back wishes. Are you ever hot! It's not enough that you have all those tornadoes? Growing up in S. FL., I am used to cold dinners. Cheese boards, cold meats (including cold meatloaf sandwiches), chilled fish and lots of creative salads.
SO is on his way to pick up my Chinese duck dinner (in bed). Had to fit the "in bed" in there. lol I have a rain check for our evening with friends. I'm doing better.
That trial caused me to eat a Kit Kat , a raspberry Weight Watcher choco dipped ice cream pop, 2 Oreos, a cup of hot tea with lemon, a handful of Starburst Fruit Chews (OK TWO really big handfuls) and swallow a bit of aggravation (and a Zantac courtesy of all the junk food) from a hungry spouse who can't seem to rustle up a handful of Fruit Chews for himself and wants to know WHEN he is going to get his wife (ie.; chief cook and bottle washer) back!
Oh it doesn't make me eat... it just makes it so that I don't cook and I have to scrounge around. I didn't watch the OJ trial. It is amazing what can be learned about the trial processes/rules/decorum from just observing one in action. An education that I hadn't considered getting.
I'm feeling much better today. We were away from the garden just a few days and are drowning in produce. Though still moving slowly, and not bending well, I think I can manage to make a veggie, cheese and crouton casserole for dinner.
We don't have TV at Maypop. I'll see if I can stream.
Missing, you are a riot. Just yell, "OBJECTION OVERRULED!" when the spouse does that and threaten to impose a fine for disruption. Geez. Some folks have no respect for the law.
You guys want real yelling at the TV? Watch those court shows or police shows with a police officer, or military shows with someone in the military. You'll love your life.
Objection? You can't just shout "Objection!", it has to be on some grounds!
They can't do that, except on TV.
Why do female police officers on TV wear high heels?
Right there, big procedural error. That evidence is getting thrown out.
Why are they fighting with the perp? Push him to the ground and cuff him, grumble grumble.
Wish they wouldn't sew their patches on backwards.
Someone teach these *^$^! to salute. Don't they have an advisor?
It's not a gun. It's a weapon.
My lettuce bolted this week too, Tammy. I don't think we are going to be done with leftovers or freezer food any time soon. We are eating our first tomatoes. It's nice to know, after growing them year after year, they are as yummy as we remembered.
Celene, I don't watch TV normally (or maybe not normal TV) and don't know about female police officers in high heels. I don't get that either. Now if your talkin' pearls, well that's different. Pearls go with everything.
Guess I'll garden tomorrow. My back is almost good as new and nothing's doing until Sunday. Anyone have big food and family/friend plans for the 4th? We are staying low key.
Slow cook our ribs in big tin turkey pan so no mess - toss when done.
Peel the white tough skin from the back of the rib strip...cut strip into individual pieces and place in pan. Cover with a full bottle of beer and half to 3/4 large jar of KCs brown sugar barbecue sauce. Turn heat high for 10 min or so ( 375) then lower to. 200 and walk away. Falling off the bone good and great with slaw salad.
I'm not completely sure What's For Dinner, but Slow Roasted [Home Grown] Tomatoes will be a part of it. :-))
Cored and seeded Atkinson tomatoes, minced garlic and habaneros, thyme, basil and rosemary - a little salt, coarse ground black pepper, some good olive oil all drizzled over the top, then into a 200° oven for 6 to 8 hours. All fresh ingredients came from my garden...dontcha just love that? Makes all the work worth it.
That looks delicious, Mary. We are just starting tomato harvesting. A coupla' spicy grilled sausages and a crusty bread for dunking would sure be nice with those tomatoes.
I am recycling a Texas caviar (blackeyed pea and corn salad) left by a RU guest into a blackeyed pea, corn, Cubanelle peppers, onions, tomatoes, etc. chili with pulled pork from (where else?) the freezer.
Our tomato plants don't even have blossoms yet! But we're not soaring to near 100* here either. Can't have it all.
I do believe I have some leftover porkchops in the frig...no trouble to bake a couple of spuds and throw a salad together. My fruit market has tomatos from Tennessee, and they are juicy and delicious so I am not suffering...
Thanks Laurel. They began scenting the house an hour ago, still an hour or two left to cook, smells yummy. We don't eat sausage but I'm thinking of grilling a pork chop, or maybe a pasta dish instead. Dunno. It's easier to decide when I'm getting hungry. :-)
meezers, it's 114° at my house now, in the shade...ugh! humidity is up to 11%, still not bad but the heat's a killer. Air quality alert to boot. Good thing I've got a good book! I'll get a batch of bread dough going in a bit.
Laurel, I told my husband what you said about the pearls. He rolls his eyes, and said "Yeah, if you want to be strangled with your necklace". Hahahaha. That's what I'm talkin' about. Women officers often complain that the pants have saggy crotches, but uniforms vary by department.
Mary, 114? Are you serious? Forget about your water bill. What about your electric/gas bill? How can you turn on the oven for six hours or bake bread in that heat.
Meezers, don't exaggerate. We were only in the low nineties. lol BTW, we have it all if that includes a gardening season longer than six weeks. You know I'm kidding.
Celene, are you saying your husband's profession is law enforcement? Well what does he know about southern lady officers? I'm sure they get up in the morning and say, "Collar, choker, opera or rope length...hmmm, what should I wear with my uniform today?" As for the uniform pants tailoring...try a career in scrubs. They are always sliding down.
We have two seasons in Wisconsin, winter, which starts in November and ends some time in May, usually at the end. Wait, I forgot Spring, which arrives then and leaves at the end of the week. Then we have Road Repair which goes on through October. I have to admit our horrible rainy cold spring must have inspired my lilies because they are blooming like mad, one has over a hundred blossoms/buds on it, most of them open. DH counted buds and stopped at 95...the daisy behind it is a volunteer that we didn't have the heart to yank.
I love daisies and lilies. I had them at my wedding with some difficulty. There was a problem finding a florist because they called daisies "weeds' and said it would be bad for business to use daisies. Harumph! About the two and a smidgen seasons...I am recalling Charles Darwin's account of native islander, Jemmy Button from Tierra del Fuego, sent back to England to amuse the court. That would be me in Wisconsin. I am still recalling, with slight embarrassment, a visit to daughter's college in western MA in April. It snowed the night I arrived and the next morning the streets had been plowed. I couldn't figure out how to get from the car onto the side walk. I couldn't walk in it and didn't realize you have shoes that keep the freezing wet stuff from soaking your feet. They must keep them all stocked at LL Bean because they are not in our stores. I must have looked like a rube with my mouth hanging open in fascination watching the streets being plowed. I'd never seen snow plows and was totally fascinated.
dinner tonight is/was a couple pieces of genoa salami, a piece of colby jack cheese and a handful of cherries. It's all I could handle after a day of pulling Bermudagrass, tossing a few scoops of mulch on some beds, and wielding a paintbrush to smooth out the fence stain being sprayed on. When I counted (as the sun went down), we had 14 8-foot panels finished, and 26 to go. Gonna be a long weekend, but not in a good way :-)
A quick grilled burger at sunset, after another afternoon of staining. We're at roughly the halfway point, so the end is not yet in sight, but I'm determined we will finish it tomorrow by noon. If not, we'll wrap it up in an evening this week. The neighbor's emus are very curious about what we're doing over here :-) Tomorrow afternoon will entail more grilling, some ice-cold watermelon and hopefully a well-done fireworks display at the fairgrounds after dark. Or rain - we'll take either.
It's warm, and I didn't want to cook much. We had homemade crackers, one batch plain, one garlic, one poppyseed. I cut up apples, pears, peaches, nectarines, watermelon, and added grapes, cherries and berries, and some Ohio cheeses...quark, brie, jalapeno havarti, huntsman (not Ohio) and this lovely smoked herb goat cheese. Bottle of wine. Perfect.
That sounds like a beautiful, and romantic, dinner Celene. Candles? About the quark...that is more like yogurt; yes? At least any quark I've ever eaten. Okay, I Googled it and I've only ever eaten sahnequark.
We are having baby back ribs, Asian slaw and zucchini fritters. The ribs are pre-roasted but we are having major weather so the grill is is a big "?".
IowaAnn, a grilled ham and cheese sandwich by any name is always a fantastic meal. We had that and a salad a few nights ago. The bread was stale and the cheese on the edge but combined with garden herbs and tomatoes it was magic (or French depending on your preference).
We are having very unsettled weather. The thunder is making the windows rattle and the walls vibrate in our cottage. It's not exactly raining. There is actually sun peeping through, even at this late hour, and yet the trees keep whipping around. I'm not sure the grilling thing is going to happen. Off to make fritters.
Rain here too but we sure need it. Sad for the kiddies all over that were ready to be wowed by the fireworks. I marinated a pork loin in a 'robusto' Italian ...Seven Seas I think and it was good! I put a little honey in it too. Put it on the grill and dodged the rain drops. How lazy huh not to make homemade marinade...baked beans as a side and a mixed green dressing with chopped mango and fresh parm cheese. No bread! I have to take prednisone for a month and TRYING TO WATCH THE CARBS so no bread and just a few spoons of the beans...but there was honey here and there.
Happy 4th of July to all --- hope yours was uneventful and relaxing.
We took a moveable feast to my MIL's this afternoon. Skrimps (ahem, skewered shrimp with a garlic/chili marinade), burgers and brats on the grill were provided by son #2. A 12-pack of beverages was provided by son #1. (They each play to their strengths.) Accompanied by sides of beans and roasted corn on the cob, and a lot of good conversation and laughter. We finished off with a cold sweet watermelon and a lemon-berry cake, courtesy of yours truly. (Lemonade concentrate ramped up the white cake mix, whipped cream for frosting topped with strawberries and blueberries :-) The pool temp was perfect, we got zero rain even though it threatened, and all had a good time. Came home in time to plant some muhly grass by the pond and then watch the fireworks all around us.
And everything but the gates are stained. Guess what I'll be doing as soon as the sun comes up and I get at least a couple miles in tomorrow morning?
BBQ's baby back ribs, bacon garnished potato salad, caprese with fresh basil and baby moz, cupcakes with butter cream frosting, and fireworks! Got some spectacular ones this year.. tribes enroute to their various homes and we are...pooped.
Oh lord, I am too stuffed to pop...We had it all.. Nephew in law grilled and smoked, deer & pork sausage, chicken halves, 10 slabs of ribs, and rib eye steaks.. As for sides, there were too many to count.. Everyone brought something and deserts galore.. We at from noon til after 8 tonight, including home made salsa. chips and over 30 lbs of fresh boiled GA peanuts..& huge wash tubs of everything from tea, coke and lots of beer or wine.. anything you might want.. We sat around watching the Flint river roll by from the deck.. All the kids enjoyed skiing and tubing behind the boat..So many people out today.. We saw no gators..Oops, almost forgot, huge 40 lb Jubilee and Crimson Sweet water melons, straight from our fields..
We grow them on our farm.. We are in the peanut capital, lol..Up there/out there, I have no idea, unless a farmer's market may have them and cook in huge vats.. You have to have green peanuts...There is a canned one, they do not compare to the fresh from the field to the pot, but are better than none, lol..actually they are not bad.
There's a boiled peanut stand on every corner here in N. GA. come summer. The peanut vendor scoops those hot, dripping peanuts into a brown lunch bag and you get an extra bag for the shells. A good vendor will stuff the bag. I'm especially fond of the spicy ones and don't care for the ones that are too salty. IowaAnn, if you can find raw peanuts, like maybe at a bulk foods market or health food store, you can make boiled peanuts. There's a bit of acquired taste involved because the nuts are soggy but so delicious. Darius, your description of boiled peanuts is perfect. I think they were invented so you can eat them in the car without nut shells getting all over the seats. :) You forgot to mention the salty, and maybe spicy shells are fun to suck on. We used to stop for boiled peanuts coming and going to Maypop. We've curtailed our peanut passion when the scale was noticeably inching up.
Larkie, it sounds like a wonderful day of great food and family togetherness. It doesn't get any better.
We are having tempura veggies from our garden with wasabi and a honey/ginger/soy dipping sauce. Cauliflower, beans, broccoli, onions, eggplant, zucchini, Japanese eggplant, green tomato and mushrooms. The mushrooms are not from our garden.
My BFF and her skeptical ex DH grilled BBQ chicken, pork steaks, and ribeyes. There was potato salad (to die for!), and green beans. Then, I pulled out my microwave, fresh, corn-on- the-cob. And all the ex could keep hollering was, "you said we were gonna grill the corm!!"
Well, I nuked two large ears for 3 minutes and 30 seconds, the remembered I was doing more than one ear, so I added 2 minutes, then let 'em rest. I used an oven mitt to hold 'em, and paper towels to wipe of the hulls & silks.
Can you say, "so SWEET it didn't even need S&P?". And, I showed my BFF how to roll the corn in a slice of buttered bread to get it evenly coated.
My BFF says she'll be doing it like that from now on!
Grilled chicken with a bit of soft cheese, topped with a butter/lemon basil/white wine sauce. Side of tomato slices/vidalia onions marinated in some balsamic vinegar and soft mozzarella cheese grilled until the onion gets a little caramelized and the cheese gets good and gooey. Leftover cake for dessert.
My demon DD left cupcakes in the frig. I put two out of their misery this morning but the remaining two are calling my name. I took out a bag of frozen Barilla meal-in-bag, fished out the peppers (can't stand 'em, can't digest 'em) and threw in some frozen cherry tomatos and zuccini, and that was dinner. It was edible. Just wasn't up to cooking after yesterday.
That makes me crave dinner at the local mom & pop Mexican place. The grandma always makes me some vegetarian thing not on the menu, it's always fabulous. I speak virtually no Spanish, she barely speaks English, but we understand each other through food :)
Mexican sounds so good right now, our local place is one of the best I have ever eaten at, and I have been to many and in many places.. All I had tonight was okra that was cut today, stir fried it and sliced me a just picked tomato.. It was very good.. Now I am about to can a cooking of tomato juice..
Sausage and peppers and potatoes roasted in oven with sweet onions and wee garlic -- drizzle of oil--- can of tomato and bake not too much to clean and will be good with eggs if the food left over for weekend.