The Taste of Summer-Kale

Kale!-Yet another fantastic leafy green we have coming out of our ears!!IMG_2536In fact we have so much Kale we give it away to our friends and family, share it with our chickens, bunny and even worms…But what I really like to do is throw it in the food processor with a little water and then put it in ice cube trays.  IMG_8804This provides us with perfect little Kale Cubes for counting into smoothies whenever we wish.IMG_2579I don’t think my kids know you can actually make a smoothie without Kale… so don’t tell them!IMG_2587They drink it right up!

My favorite mix these days I stole from the Whole Foods Drink bar…One especially self indulgent day I threw down a whopping $8 for a cup of this stuff and was hooked.

Luckily I can make my own and so can you!

The Green Goddess Drink

Mix

Kale( frozen or fresh)

Apple Juice

Lemon Juice

and Ginger ( small amounts, for kids detect it quickly!!)

Ice Cubes on a hot summers day!!

Blend and drink.

It is excellent and the kids can’t get enough!

 

 

The Taste of Summer- Swiss Chard

IMG_2548This summer we harvest Swiss Chard every day…or at least we should!  I looked and looked for recipes that were tasty and used A LOT of Swiss Chard.. this one adapted from Farm Girl Fare won the prize!

Swiss Chard DipIMG_2559

Get the biggest baking dish you have

IMG_2547Get as much Swiss Chard as you have—up to 5 lbs or so

IMG_2558Chop stems and leaves separately

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Toss stems with olive oil and roast for 20 mins at 350

Add leaves gradually in handfuls and stir every 7 mins (approximately).

Everything will shrink down considerably.  Once everything looks pretty well roasted take out of the oven and cool.

Meanwhile chop a bunch of onions and garlic and saute them in butter in a skillet.

Once you have all your things sautéed put half of everything in the food processor.  This makes a nice creamy effect.

I then add Sour cream, parmesan and some yogurt.

Now add the rest of your sautéed onions, garlic and chard and just pulse quickly to mix everything together.

Now transfer to a baking dish and put in the oven at 350 for about 10 min or until warm.

Sprinkle with parmesan and serve.

It is not pretty (so there is no picture!) but once you taste it, you will appreciate it’s beauty.  Great for a potluck because you simply must share or you will regret it later!

 

 

 

The Taste of Summer- Rosemary Lemonade

This summer we have been eating well!! Mostly because other people have been cooking for us, but also because we are blessed with bountiful harvests.  Here are just a few of the recipes we have been enjoying this summer- dedicated to those we have shared them with… and asked for the recipes!

IMG_2602Grandma Tutu’s Rosemary Lemonade

First you make the

Simple Syrup

1cup Fresh Rosemary Leaves ( striped from the stem)

1 Cup Water

1 Cup Organic Sugar

(You can multiply this recipe and the syrup will keep in the fridge for months.)

Bring all ingredients to a boil and them turn down to a simmer for at least 1/2 hour. Turn off heat and let cool then strain out leaves.

IMG_2609Rosemary Lemonade

1 Cup Organic Lemon Juice (fresh squeezed or bottled)

1 Cup Simple Syrup

6 Cups Water

Mix, stir and serve

*You can replace Rosemary for Basil, Lavender, or other herbs that strike your fancy

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2015 Santa Fe Harvest Swap

Busy little squirrels over here gathering up the acorns for winter and preparing all our goodies to the share

on Oct 25th

at the Fourth Annual Santa Fe Harvest Swap!!

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Over the years this has become a place where we gather with our community to

Swap, Savor and Celebrate the Abundance of our year together on this beautiful earth.

It is a place to share gratitude for all that we are given and have the opportunity to be nourished from each others kitchens, hard work and hearts.

Hope to see you all back again, or if you haven’t ever joined us, this might just be your year!! Sign up here.

My counters runneth over

This pretty much sums up my kitchen these days.  My counters runneth over with goodness calling my name: feed me, cook, me, can me, dry me, PLEASEEEEEEE

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We reignited the sourdough starter for our Pre-school baking day, upon my sons request after hearing the Little Red Hen for the first time, and we made ourselves some sourdough bread (both gluten and gluten-free I might add!) He couldn’t have been more excited, which totally made it worth the effort ( we have been gluten-free for a year now and my bread rhythm is completely gone and I don’t really miss it at all)

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We have two crockpots going 24 hours a day with the tomatoes and more ripening every day! Luckily I have a baby holder when I MUST do something that requires two hands like churning hot tomatoes!

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We went apple picking and luckily there are about twenty pre-school apple picking verses to learn along side.

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We changed the seasonal alter to an autumn theme to my sons delight added a few new puppets of whom he is very fond of!  These little guys got me back in the crafting mood, and though I spent way too much time on them, aspiring to my Utube muse, I had so much fun and now have yet another crafty obsession, needle felting!

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This must be our season because home-pre-school curriculum lines up perfectly with what we fill our days with anyways, so instead of feeling like I am taking on yet ANOTHER task, I feel like I am actually just weaving song and spirit and sweet company into my daily hum.

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Ahhhh I just love when things are fluid and easy….well done with ease & fluidity–

(canning and processing all this stuff while juggling two kids is not exactly easy!!, but a healthy challenge I am delighting in and I am sure not the first mama to have all these pots on the stove at once!)

AHHHHHHugust

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Oh August- you are such a dream, I am pretty sure I write you an Ode every year, and this one you have shown your true colors so generously, yet again.

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Your light is amazing, your rains oh so soft, the world just seems to sparkle in your glow.

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You have me busy though I will say that…Gathering up those Amish Paste tomatoes like little easter eggs hiding under a forest of foliage and the cherries that just won’t stop giving!!

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Chop chop chopping onions that are pungent and sweet all at the same time!

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And attempting to put off the canning sessions as long as I can by fermenting Salsa!! IMG_9043

Which is going quite well I must say!

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August, it feels like you are almost over and I just wanted you to know, you are my favorite of all the many moons we see come and go, and if September wasn’t so Spectacular as well, I might grasp at you, but for now, I just want you to know how much I love you so.

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The Rough Guide to Big Batch Basil Pesto

It happens every summer…or winter I suppose.  I start in the green house in March with these little tiny Basil seeds…

they are so itty bitty I end up planting way too many.

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When they grow I find plenty of nooks and crannies for them to grow in the garden and then this time of year I am swimming in beautiful Genovese Basil.  So I get to work on big old batches of pesto to freeze and share at the Santa Fe Harvest Swap, (yes it is happening again this fall folks, more details later!!!)

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I usually start with about 1 1/2 lbs Basil, a dozen head of garlic, four cups almonds, four cups olive oil, and a handful of salt.  This much will get you about a case of half pint jars of pesto.  It isn’t hard, just takes a few time consuming steps- like peeling a ton of garlic, and plucking off a ton of Basil stems.

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Along the way I figured out an average head of garlic equals about 1/4 minced garlic- which is enough for one batch– yes I like garlic!!

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To make these batches affordable I use Almonds instead of pine nuts, and I soak them over night before hand to get even more bang for my buck ( they expand a little when soaked)

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The making is easy once you have everything prepped and ready, (this can take days!!)IMG_8798

For one Batch ( 3 half pint jars)

Fill the Cuisinart with

4 cups of basil leaves (That means filled to the brim and pushed down a couple times)

I pulse the Cuisinart a couple of times and add

1 cup of Olive Oil on top and pulse till a nice green paste

Then I add a

1/4 cup minced garlic (run through the cuisinart earlier)

1 Cup soaked Almonds

1tsp salt

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Before you finish taste it!! Some garlic is much stronger than others as is Basil so make sure you like it before you go freezing a ton of it!!

Blend until nice a creamy and fill up half pint jars leaving a little room at the top for a layer of olive oil ( this keeps it green)

This amount will make 3 Half pint jars

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Do this four times and you will have a case of pesto which you can freeze and eat throughout the year!

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***Remember this is a Rough Guide- I can barely follow a recipe much less write one, but so many of you have asked how I make my pesto over the years, so there you have it!

How to spend a summer day

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Let your garden run wild in the hot summer sun and your kid be half naked all he wants!

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Pick the reddest ripest Nanking Cherries on the bush ( a super hardy bush cherry that does great in Southwestern landscaping)

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Wash in cold water in the hot sun

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Take your time, this is one of the best parts!

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Roll them around in your little fingers and giggle

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Dust off the old Cherry pitter and crank to your hearts delight!

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Get as messy as you want.

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Soon enough you will have a bowl full of Cherries.

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Decide to make a pie

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Roll it out and mark it with a B

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Put it on the oven (outdoor oven or solar oven if you are lucky cause it is simply too hot to bake a pie inside!)

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Wait for it!

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Give thanks

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and thoroughly enjoy!

A feast for the eyes & pantry

I love gardening, canning, picking and preserving….but I also just love taking pretty pictures of all this bounty.
A simple sharing of the beauty these autumn days have brought me.

Fresh picked Calendula in my hand

Fresh picked Calendula in my hand

Pink Brandywines, my new love

Pink Brandywines, my new love

Put up for the long winter ahead

Put up for the long winter ahead

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Vegetable portraits on slate shingle

Bounty by the pounds

Bounty by the pounds

Canning on my coleman

Canning on my coleman

And that pretty much sums up this glorious autumnal day.

Salad Days & Dressings

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We had a smashing spring day in the sunshine at the Children’s Museum this weekend and I got the blessing of feeding many folks my garden greens.  We talked gardening, making potting soil and building wooden flats and got a few young gardeners started sprouting their first sunflower seeds!!  Nothing quite like that first spring day where it feels like the whole town is out to play.  It was truly nostalgic for me, as about eight years ago I ran the garden there and it is actually where I meet my husband for the first time.  Now we have a little one of our own to bring to play, mingling with our sprouting community of little ones frolicking beneath the very beings my young hands planted so long ago.   Feeling so lucky to have such a great crew to hang with and such a beautiful place to raise our babies up in.  Thanks to the Arts of Nature for providing such a splendid community gathering, Griet, such a delight to see yo manifest your visions.

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I also made a few home dressings that I shared, so as promised, here are the recipes for those.

Green Goddess- Voted #1

· ¼ c Tahini

· ¼ c olive oil

· 1 tbl +1 tsp Tamari

· 1 tsp Miso

· 1 tsp Toasted Sesame Oil

· 2 tbl Apple Cider Vinegar

· ½ c water

· 2 cloves garlic or a handful of fresh garlic chives

· 1-2 green onions

Blend all ingredients in a blender/food processor until desired consistency and serve on fresh greens mmamma.

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Maple Mustard- Voted #2

1/4 cup Mustard

1/4 cup Maple Syrup

3/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar

3/4 cup Olive Oil

1/4 Flax seed Oil

These measurements I just made up so do measure it to you taste.  Shake and serve

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Tarragon Yogurt- Voted # 3

2 big handfuls of fresh Tarragon

1 big handful fresh Mint

1 1/2 Yogurt

Salt/Pepper

2 tbsp Lemon Juice

Add more of whatever you wish to get the taste you like. Blend till smooth

Here’s to lots of springing energy and plenty of spring greens!