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01.23.11

Very little was written about the kitchen, garden, and the homestead when I first started the blog, so there really isn’t much to share in those categories right now.  I do hope to take some time to share more about those aspects of our farm in the future.

We have been steadily (and slowly) working on our vegetable garden area and I am really looking forward to sharing more about the progress as we continue to move forward on it.  The property was owned by a family who the husband was a master gardener.  There are extensive garden beds full of exotic and various varieties of plants scattered throughout the few acres around our homes.  We also have a beautiful orchard.  The re-post today shows the small bit of information about our garden and a recipe crafted by yours truly.

{SEVENTH RE-POST}

garden & kitchen

At times you can see the wonderful produce growing, other times all you can see are the weeds.  I’m still learning what exactly are the weeds and what aren’t, as well as what are considered “edible weeds/flowers/and other non-typical plant life”.  I keep telling Tyler that I’m going to end up killing someone by serving a poisonous weed by mistake because I am trying to be creative with my cooking.

Here are some pretty flowers from some of our hundreds of garden beds.

{white beauties}

Not sure what they are, but I love them!

{purple puffball}
{purple puffball}
z
z

There is an overabundance of great fruits and vegetables growing around the farm these days. 

I am still getting used to the reality, time,  and  hard work it actually requires to “do something” with the fruit.

I remember summers of going and picking blueberries and strawberries with my friends to eat during that week and freeze some for later. That is all it was.  A fun summer activity to do when we knew of nothing else to do.

Moving to a farm with a full blown vegetable garden that needs to be weeded, watered, and harvested (not to mention learning what each veggie’s special requirements are and what they are supposed to look like when “ready”) and that also has a 2 acre orchard full of apples, pears, plums, hazelnuts and cherries has been a huge learning experience for me.

I have realized that there is still joy in going and picking and harvesting the bounty, but once that fun part has been accomplished, you have to do something with the plenty- wash, freeze, can, dry, make into a delicious pie… the options seem endless. This part is also fun, but right now the learning curve is so large in every area of my life, I can only see the potential fun of it. :)

At times it is overwhelming to see the fruit falling from the trees onto the ground faster than we can do anything with it. But I know that the baby steps I take today are going to bring full pantries and gift baskets for friends and family in the future :)

One thing I do now to use the goodies and that brings me joy, satisfaction, and thrill; is to go out to the garden and orchard with my cute little basket and my cute little boots and my cute little Doggy Bears and bring back whatever inspires me and create a dinner that will tantalize the taste-buds.

Or so I hope.

Now, after that long introduction and background, here is one of my latest creations:

{the bounty}
{the bounty}

First, Bula Bears and I went to the orchard and gathered delicious plums.  Toby Bears was at Doggy School, otherwise he definitely would have been in on the adventure.

{lip lickin' good}
{lip lickin’ good}

Bula Bears could hardly contain herself for the dinner that was to come- all she could do was lick her lips in anticipation.

{glamor cooking}
{glamor cooking}

Probably the most important step of cooking before you do anything else, is choosing your apron.

Yes, it’s important to protect your clothes, but almost more importantly you need to show a little style and strut your stuff around the kitchen in a sweet looking apron.

I’m pretty positive that dancing while cooking will make the food taste better- at least it works for me.

The apron of choice for this meal: the one on the far right- a thrift store find, $0.25 :)

{the ingredients}
{the ingredients}

What you’ll need:

Pepper & Salt (I use Kosher salt in everything), to taste

Herbs- marjoram, oregano, and rosemary to taste. You can use anything that you like. I just go through the herb garden and smell each thing and decide what would be a good mix together for that meal.

{the chop & slice}
{the chop & slice}

Plums

1 small-medium onion, sliced

Cherry Tomatoes, as many as you’d like

{the liquids}
{the liquids}

White Wine Vinegar, a splash

Red Wine (notice the great name of that wine. Those Joneses are everywhere :) ) I have no real idea how much I used- I don’t really measure.  But I would say 1/2 cup.  Depending on how many people you are making this for and how saucy you’d like it, you can choose how much wine you add.

{smell the goodness}
{smell the goodness}

Saute the onion until clear (2-3minutes) then throw in the plums, herbs, and salt & pepper.

Let simmer and cook for a bit (3-5 minutes)

Then add the splash of White Wine Vinegar and red wine.  You want all the flavors to meld.

{side dish}
{side dish}

You could make a side dish while the flavors meld together. Preheat the oven when you first put your apron on :)

I made green beans with salt, pepper, and extra virgin olive oil.

Place on a cookie sheet.

Put extra virgin olive oil and salt & pepper over the beans.

Put in a preheated oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

{noodles}
{noodles}

You will also need to make some noodles.  Choose your favorite or what you have on hand.

Rinse the noodles with cold water to help them not stick.  You can also put a little oil in the pot when you boil the noodles.

While the noodles cool and the side dish is cooking place the cherry tomatoes in the pan with all the other goodies.

Cover with a lid until the tomatoes burst (about 5 minutes)

{a little bling}
{a little bling}

With every good pasta dish you need a good beverage.

We chose a wonderful Zinfandel.

But the type of wine doesn’t really matter, what I wanted to show you was this amazing bottle stopper I got for a wedding shower gift!

It is just too great, so I had to share it  :)

{ta-da!}
{ta-da!}

And once everything is finished cooking and your kitchen is filled with amazing aromas…

Pat yourself on the back, give your Honey-man a kiss, and sit down and enjoy!

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