The foods of my youth come back to me more than I realize. I’ve cooked foods from around the world, and relish spicy Indian, exotic Vietnamese, and gourmet French food whenever I can. But…when all comes down to it, and when I just need a taste of home, it’s always the foods that my mom made. Iowa is sometimes called “The Pork Capitol of the World”, so it’s not odd that I love bacon. I’m not alone in that…even if you’re not from Iowa! With the first vine ripened
On a hot summer day, who wants to spend lots of time in the kitchen, at least not at dinner time when the heat of the day has invaded every pore. Not me. But I do love to cook, and have to find ways to get my fix without a lot of fuss. My solution? Making pasta early in the morning, letting it dry throughout the day and cooking up a quick meal in about 15 minutes when I get home from work.
Finally!! Gardening is always such a lesson in patience. You’d think I’d know that by now. I’ve had a few snippets of herbs and a strawberry or two, but this is the first picking from the vegetable garden. The garlic was planted last fall and today I picked scapes, the flower stalk. Not only does cutting them help the plant to direct energy to the root–which is what we are really after, but also is a very nice addition to soups and sauces.
I’ve been busy. Long time, no post….but check this out. There are funny looking things growing in my house. On purpose. With an assignment for an article about growing mushrooms on your kitchen counter, I’ve got 5 little habitats of fungi sprouting from bags or boxes and hopefully some day from a log. Still waiting on that one!
The most interesting, and so far the most successful, has been the lion’s mane. I’ve never seen or tasted this one before.
I’m making lunch for a couple good friends. Nothing too spicy for Mary and I know Barbara loves pasta. Sometimes I plan these things when I wake in the middle of the night. (The danger here is it makes me hungry and I have to creep down the stairs for a snack.) Dad gave me a stove top smoker years ago and he loved smoking salmon. I’ve been craving it, and this was the perfect opportunity to pull it out.
This is the salad Michelle and I made the other day. The dressing turned out quite nice, taking on a bit of the shrimp flavor, but having enough bite to spark up the mixed greens. Red bells always add that bit of color I’m looking for, and the crunch and antioxidants they provide are an added bonus. The perfect spring and summer salad that will be made up again and again after a long day in the garden or a hectic day with tourists….
I was looking forward to March to get everything caught up for a last clean sweep of winter. But no….it decided to be Spring a few weeks early. With temps in the 70s most days and a few climbing into the 80s we have a full blooming spring right now! Most of the trees are budding and many are blooming, like never before. That meant climbing around the hills to rake off all the winter muck and moldy leaves so the newbies didn’t get smothered on those hot days.
After a decadent holiday like Thanksgiving I just need some simple and “clean” soup. Not that I don’t love the holiday and butter and cream. I adore butter and cream! Checking out the reserves in the refrigerator I discovered 4 beets remaining from the CSA box. They were a bit weathered, but still perfectly firm and good. A couple carrots and a wedge of cabbage secured the deal…Borsch!
I have a thing for beans– especially dry beans. I just love all the colors, the shapes, and the names. The Seed Savers Exchange Yearbook lists hundreds of varieties with such wonderful names as Bountiful Ester, Black Turtle Soup, Little Brown Cat, Tiger Eye, or Purple Buddha. I have a bowl of mixed dry beans on my desk to play with and admire. This year one of my goals for the little Galena Community Garden plot
It all started the day I was picking up my CSA box at the Farm. I was standing in line eagerly awaiting my box. Just in front of me, a woman was clasping several tomatoes and a bundle or two of curly leaf kale. I stared at the bunch of kale, thinking, “I sure hope I don’t get a lot of kale in my box, like I did last time.” ~which I did. I had to ask her, ” What does one do with all that kale? “