Monday, June 28, 2010

All Work and No play makes Millie ?



It wasn't all work this weekend.
I was pulling weeds and admiring my beautiful Blue Coco bean vines...
When I saw it!
A dragonfly clinging so perfectly to the vine!
I had to get the camera and try for a picture.
I knew..I knew... I was once again..unprepared and Too Late.
Sigh.
No dragonfly.
They often have a flying routine and return.
I was hoping.
But no...not this dragonfly.


I settled for a picture of this Koko.
She's waiting patiently.
If she waits patiently her master will come play.
We do play.
Everyday.
Sometimes we just throw the ball.
Sometimes we go down to the ponds.
Lately she has gotten to go..just be with us...
When we unload hay...
Pick berries...both red and blue.
She's learning that all work doesn't have to be No play.
With us, she's learning that our particular work is our play.
We admire the growing plants.
We see the wild things and it touches our hearts.
We love making spaces for beautiful things to grow.
And while we grow our things we do stop and we do play.
Sometimes just for a few moments.
Very special moments that makes our hearts sing.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sour Cream Berry Pie Recipe

My creative juices were stifled again!
My rechargeable batteries didn't have enough charge.
I assembled the pie ingredients in a pleasing way.
But alas..when the batteries were taken from the charger
Full of energy?
They failed to juice up the camera.

However...I did some browsing and failed to find this amazing recipe anywhere.

It is so good, it is so easy..I just have to share.

Sour Cream Berry Pie

Filling:
2 1/2 C of berries, or fruit of choice. My favorite is a blueberry and black raspberry combo.
1 C of sugar
1 C of sour cream
3 oz. cream cheese
2-3 TBLSP Flour\

Combine sugar and flour. Add sour cream and cream cheese. Blend well. Put fruit in unbaked pie shell, pour filling over fruit. Top with crumb topping.

Topping
1/2 cup flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup softened butter

Mix until crumb texture achieved, put on top of pie. Bake at 425 for 15 min, reduce heat to 350 for an additional 30 minutes, or until topping is browned. Baking time varies depending on type of fruit used.

I have always used fresh fruit in this recipe.

The recipe is in a Holmes-Wayne Electric Co-operative Member Cookbook.
I love those recipes.
They are usually tried and true.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Too Late


You're too late for Berry Cream Pie.
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One Weekend in June with Family Coming and Going

Sigh.
This wonderful weekend is almost over.

For those of you who don't know I am the mother of three, a mostly empty nester. The oldest son is "The Mechanic" and now lives in the grand old yellow house down the road. The grand old yellow house is the original farmhouse where DH's grandfather was born. Yeah!

The middle one is the computer guy. He just graduated from Univ. of Cinci with a degree in Computer Science, complete with a job. Yeah for him. He's becoming a city guy. He came home Thursday night and stayed through Saturday...then headed back to Cincy. Sigh!

The youngest..Baby Girl is working on a degree at Ohio Northern. She's home for the summer and is working at OARDC. She had her friends here this weekend for a camping canoeing weekend
at Mohican Adventures. She spent her first working summers being a Go Cart attendant there.

You know...I have been lamenting on having to use a nearly antique digital camera for my blogging pics...and wouldn't you know, my first few pics drained it dry. The batteries are charging up... because I wanted to post about all the cooking I did this weekend.

I haven't really baked anything for a while.

I had to celebrate.
Kid's were home.
It is Father's day!
I had to share the season's bounty.

I still have strawberries. Strawberry Pie.

Blueberries and raspberries are in.

Blueberry pie, blueberry bars, and blueberry muffins.

Monster cookies...Baby girl's contribution.

All the peas are coming non-stop. Snow peas, snap peas and English Peas.

The weekend's harvest goes in our freezer. The rest of the week it goes to market.

The garden is a jungle...what with all the house cleaning and baking and haymaking.

We have managed to get all the hay baled before rain so far. Imagine that.

Thanks to the hard work of the master and the mechanic.

The mechanic is having us for a cookout and then I think we are FISHING.

The garden and the farm will be here Monday.

Pictures to follow...when the batteries are charged.




Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Kohlrabi for Kohlrabi Soup

Ok. I admit it. I grow Kohlrabi. I eat it rarely. I've tried it raw. It's good. Strawberries are better. It grows well in spring and looks amazing. I can usually sell it at the market in small quantities.

Imagine THE EVENT.
Last Sat afternoon, we were doing the usual..pulling weeds. I had taken my few veggies into the Roots market on Thursday.
Roots is a cool farmers market.
I don't have to be there.
They have STAFF and VOLUNTEERS.
They sell our produce for us and we can go home and grow more produce
Then....THE EVENT...DH yelled out the deck door that I had a message on the phone.
To understand it I would have to come listen.
However he gave me a preview.

"Some lady bought all your KOHLRABI and wants more. Right now."
DH regards vegetables other than potatoes with some suspicion.

I listened to the message. It was from a very nice lady. She had a friend whose specialty was Kohlrabi soup. He grows Kohlrabi for soup making.
This year a groundhog snacked on his Kohlrabi.
No Kohlrabi for Kohlrabi soup.

Alice was delighted to find Kohlrabi at the market and needed more Kohlrabi so her friend could make soup.
This morning I delivered Kohlrabi and upon request was given the following recipe for Kohlrabi soup:

Boil chopped potatoes, carrots. The same amount of each and boil separately so neither gets mushy. Brown good sized onion in butter, add flour to make roux. Boil chopped Kohlrabi roots with small amount of water and combine all ingredients. This recipe was learned from his Romanian parents.
A quick internet search for Romanian Kohlrabi soup yielded several yummy sounding recipes...but this was the closest to the above described recipe.

Kohlrabi Soup

Ingredients:

Butter
2 stalks celery
1 large carrot
1 TBLSP Parsley
3 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 lb Kohlrabi (2 -3 large roots)
1 TBLSP Flour
1 1/2 TBLSP lemon juice

Basically... cook vegetables in chicken broth till tender, brown onion in butter, adding flour to make roux, add roux to pot to thicken soup a bit...adding lemon juice at the very end.

Kohlrabi soup anyone?

By the way...the name Kohlrabi come from the german word Kohl for cabbage, combine with rapa for turnip. This gives you a pretty good description of what a Kohlrabi is...sort of an improvement on both cabbage and turnip.

Again...I like Kohlrabi raw....but I am going to try the soup.







Monday, June 14, 2010

Searching for the perfect look

I have been searching and searching....

A apologize to my faithful followers. Over the past few months I have changed themes, and colors for my blog far too many times. I even started a new blog on wordpress. I am learning my way around over there too. Again...changing...ever changing.

Like the perfect strawberry... I am looking for the perfect one.

Alas...I guess I will know it when I find it. I envy those who can design there own...effortlesslly. However thanks to those of you who do design our themes. It makes it easier for us to blather on every day and still have time for the garden, the farm, the kids, and the shops. Thank you blogger...Thank you wordpress. Thank you blotanical.

Be patient with us...we do read your advice...just not so good at following it.

Monetizing will help? Not yet. Maybe later when I actually have something worthwhile to say. Maybe later when I find my unique voice. So far... I haven't found anything to say that isn't said by another soul, maybe even a couple hundred. So...I don't like monetizing so much right now.

Now I am looking...looking....searching...searching for my voice and my look.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

How do you like your strawberries?

I've been searching and searching for the perfect strawberry.

But...what if I found the perfect strawberry?

What would I pay for it?

Where would I look?

When would I know?



How do you like your strawberry?

Do you like it sweet?

Do you like it red?

Do you like it fat and juicy and sweet?



Thursday, June 3, 2010

Paying for our Growing Hobby

Summer is here, complete with thunderstorms and mosquitoes. And...let's not forget my new hobby.. local garden markets. My first venture into this was my little last year's debut at the OARDC Midweek Market. I was thrilled to go home with a few greenbacks in my pocket...never mind, that all in all I probably spent more than I made--paying for the space, buying stall decorations, packaging, labeling etc. Definitely...not a get rich quick scheme.
But... I am doing it again this year...and yesterday was the first market. I was just happy to have produce from my garden this early. I had beets, spinach, strawberries, lettuce, green onions, swiss chard, kohlrabi, and snow peas. This afternoon I will be taking the same thing to the Local Roots market.

This year I've expanded to include a Local Roots market. What a fun group of people to meet and talk with each week.

My garden is expanding and hopefully my growing expertise. I admit it...in years past my efforts at gardening pretty much went to waste in a hit or miss kind of way. The worst waste..actually was not harvesting on a timely schedule. Can you believe it?

The few dollars that we smaller market gardeners get for a bag of spinach, or a quart of strawberries isn't nearly enough to pay for all the labor and time that goes into it. Most of us do it because we are in love with growing things. One of my garden club friends actually admitted that she loves weeding. I think I do too. There is something special about nurturing and making space for special plants to grow and mature. The bizarre thing about producing beautiful vegetables..is that we help them along and then ..EAT them.

But...the point to this is that with market gardening I am getting a little return and the actual cost of my growing hobby is being repaid. I get back the cost of my seeds. am producing better quality food for my own family, and really getting a few cents for my time.

Our growing hobby is also growing slowly. I would never consider borrowing money to do this thing...and we don't have pocket money to spend on gadgets and growing tools that would make the label less and increase production..so we are doing it the old fashioned way... a little at a time, learning as we go.

Another thought to share...commercial vegetable production has come a long way and we are lucky to have it. It probably isn't as nasty for us as some folks would like to have it. The alternative might be NO vegetables and fruits for many people. That would be a sad thing.