We keep a pretty organic garden on our quarter acre. The philosophy
we've been using is to go easy on the earth, to u7se a few native
American planting techniques, to use all parts of a plant we can, and
to not sweat the critters. Thus, many of the root veggies and the
onion sets we put out went to various critters, although in other
years we've gotten a fair amount of potatoes that we planted from just
putting eyes in the soil after letting them root a bit on the
windowsill. We had tons of poddling radishes this year which made for
some nice stir fry dishes and instant crunchy things on the plate. and
all of our heirloom tomatoes did well. Likewise a packet of heirloom
yellow beans kept producing and producing although our herbs were
mainly slim pickins. We got two total gours, which we ate early like
squash instead of going the decorative route with them, never got any
watermelons and, like last year, had cantelopes only a few inches
across that were, however tiny, quite delicious.
Maybe because of global warming, and maybe for some other reason, one
of the glories of the spring garden, tons and tons of violets, never
showed on the lawn. We usually pick them stems and all, pack bottles
with them, fill them with white vinegar, wait a few weeks for the
vinegar to change to the correct color, and then decant into
decorative bottles for ourselves and friends, the perfect salad
vinegar. This year, we had none, and there was no flower to take its
place. The pickling cukes did ok, but not enough to set aside for
Today I made two batches of fresh tomato sauce, pretty easy, just
tomatoes, crushed garlic, some oregano from the herb garden, a little
basil, skins and all.
Last time it was tomatoes, peppers,
We've had an abundance of peppers this year. Two plants were acquired
from a Vietnamese plants vendor at the local farmer's market, these
very tiny (not quite so small as African Bird Pepper, but close) but
super hot numbahs. They are still going. We pick them, dry them, gut
them of their seeds and then use them throughout the years, usually
giving little packets of the dried seasoning to friends. One or two
goes a long way. Our half hot (lutenica) peppers fromt he Balkans we
just ate all summer but the sweet ones (paprika peppers) we dehydrated
and saved in jars to add to this and that, and the slightly hotter
ones we covered in grape seed oil to make a pepper sauce of one kind,
and in vinegar to make a another kind of pepper sauce.
This time of year, we're able to get apples and pears cheap. We're
filling all racks of the dehydrator on a regular basis with whatever
mushrooms and apples we get on sale, not at the same time, of course,
so we can get shopping down to a minimum.
Just made a batch of chicken salad yesterday: cubes of chicken,
walnut pieces, green apple pieces, a handful of currents, one of those
peppers cut with scissors into very miniscule little squares sprinkled
on, some fresh pickles (no yellow number 5, no other garbage).
Crammed into a half a homemade pita (water flour yeast one t. sugar to
accelerate the yeast) with some lettuce (or like me when you are out
of greens, you can use purslane from the garden)
We had exactly one chick hatch out this spring. He's a rooster (we call him
peep), and he's getting to that age. But he has no young hens who are
willing to allow his attentions. So he has turned to inanimate objects. I
had to tell him that thing I use to carry food to the goats is a _b_ucket.
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