Monday, September 26, 2011

Trivia: Edamame

They are actually soybeans, before they are fully ripe.  
As far as nutrients go, edamame and all preparations of soybeans are rich in carbohydrates, protein, dietary fiber, omega-3 fatty acids and micronutrients, particularly folic acid, manganese and vitamin K (table).[3]
For some reason I have never made edamame
I love it, but I’ve never made it. 
Until now that is. It’s so easy.
Place pods in a bowl. 
Add a ¼ cup of water.
Cook in microwave (or steam on stove) for 4-6 minutes.
Drain and sprinkle lightly with salt. 
So good. 
In restaurants I have never noticed the little “hairs” on the pod. 

Saturday, September 24, 2011


Last year my Dad had dug up some stray asters, a friendly bird deposited in the garden. He kept one for himself and gave me 7 seedlings. By the time I had planted them, in various spots in the garden, they looked quite sad
and I didn't hold out a lot of hope for their survival.
All summer I had this enormous plant (4-5 feet tall and 3-4 feet wide)
growing in the middle of my garden.  I can’t tell you how many times
I considered digging it up, worried it was a weed. 
Well about two weeks ago it bloomed and I discovered
it was one of the asters. 
It's completely caked with blooms. 
Thanks Dad!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Yellow Watermelon

My first yellow watermelon.
It tasted like spun sugar.
A tip I learned is if you will be storing a partial watermelon
keep it on the rind.
Of course I read this after I cut it off the rind….
live and learn…

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tomatoes: canning a bit of summer

I’ve finally reached that stage where the tomatoes are just too many to eat.  I’ve canned a few tomato sauces  and plum tomatoes.   It's shocking how many tomatoes it takes to fill a jar.  I’m looking forward to opening a jar in the winter when summer is a faint memory. 

 I’m also having fun making labels for my jars….

Monday, September 12, 2011

Zinnia: flower to seed

Thumbelina Zinnia

I’m always fascinated at how the zinnias
evolve from a nice button, to a conical shape, then to seed. 

Saw a bird (sparrow? chickadee?)
feasting on the seed head this morning. 
I love knowing I planted something
that makes another creatures life a bit easier.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Baby Bok Choy, Shitake Mushrooms and Celery

This spring I began ordering organic vegatables from Fresh Picks
Each week I receive an assortment of
fruit and vegetables from nearby farms. 
 So fresh, so good and wish I had started it sooner.
I just made the above stir fry of
baby bok choy (from Harmony Valley),
shitake mushrooms (from River Valley Ranch)
and celery.  
What a find!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Honey Bee Weekend

Meadow Lake
The Morton Arboretum is having
showcasing their hives with educational hikes to the hives
and through the gardens that provide the bees with pollen and nectar. 
It was a perfect day to learn about the bees
and soak in a bit of nature.  

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Batiks on a Line

Starting a project
that I hope will use many of the batiks I’ve been collecting.
It was too hot to play in the garden
but it was a perfect day to dry
the freshly washed linens on the line.

You also get a glimpse of my jungle.
The mosquitoes have been so aggressive
I haven’t been spending the time I should
 weeding and cutting back. 
Ah well…there are worse things.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Strawberry Lavender Jam

The recipe is from Liana Krissoff's Canning for a New Generation.
For me it is more of a sauce than a jam,
and thus all the better to put over ice cream. 
Sad strawberry season is over that I can’t make more. 
 It will be first on the list of next year strawberry preserving. 
 It's amazing.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

September Calendar


Here is a computer screen background for September. 
Included are a few reminders for gardening in zones 4-6.
To upload the image
1 - click on the above image
2 - right click
3 - choose "set as background"