Saturday, July 27, 2013

How My Garden Grows

One of the primary reasons that I decided to buy a house was to have a garden.

Many moons ago, in the thriving hippie metropolis of Eugene, OR, a good friend and I shared a communal garden plot for two years. I loved it. We had fresh produce all summer, which seemed to thrive on our shared negligence. Hauling compost to the garden (on a golf club cart rigged to the back of a bike via bungee cords), weeding, and finally harvesting. Oodles of fun. The veggie grilled cheeses and fried green tomatoes that came from the garden were so good.

After I moved to Portland, I missed it. In my first apartment, I grew a little container garden on the fire escape. Mostly flowers gotten as starts  from the Walgreens across Burnside. This drew many hummingbirds, but not any produce. I then moved across the river, and immediately signed up to be on the (notoriously long)  community garden waitlist for two (very popular) gardens. Which never panned out. Sigh.

So, when I moved into Clementine, one of the first orders of business was to plant a garden. And I did. Then, several weeks later, I planted garden two. And ended up with TONS of zucchini starts (most of which later were pulled) and ELEVEN tomato plants. Which took off like mad.

I do not claim that I, or my similarly sized tomato plants, are solid, tall, and Amazonian. But I feel even my diminutive 63-inch tall tomatoes are still an impressive agricultural feat.
What I have pulled from the garden thus far:

2 pounds of snap peas
3 sizable bunches of kale
2 heads of lettuce
10 green tomatoes (which were later pickled)
broccoli leaves (used for lasagne in place of pasta)
13 oblong zucchini
9 globe zucchini
1 jalapeno
A small handful of baby carrots
8 cucumbers
1 very large, very green tomato (currently ripening on the kitchen counter)
1 scarlet carrot, plus two other, less impressive carrots
3 gold beets

I am pretty pleased with my green thumb.

Bon appetit!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

What Does One Do with a Half Flat of Blueberries and a Gallon of Milk?

I'm not dead yet! Sorry for the long long hiatus. So much stuff going on with Clementine. Weeding, planting, mowing. Repeat.


What does one do with a half flat of blueberries and a gallon of milk?

Well, I can't speak for the world, but here was what I did:

  • Blueberry ginger shrub. I wasn't expecting much from this, but was totally blown away. Sweet, slightly tart, and all-around delicious.
  • Froze them. Most of them (4 of the 6 pints)
And the milk?

3/4 of it went into making yogurt, which became Cherry Garcia frozen yogurt pops, plus kefir. The kefir then became kefir cheese, blended with the strained blueberries from the shrub, plus some minced salt-preserved lemons. Amazing!

Bon Apetit!