With yesterday being the Summer Solstice, I felt it only fitting to spend some quality time in my gardens tending to my plants. (As if I don’t do that on a daily basis already!) I pulled weeds, picked peas, and replanted some lettuce, radishes, and beets. Yes, I know radishes and lettuce are Spring and Fall crops, but I’ve been known to throw caution to the wind and put them in the ground anyway. True they don’t like the hot summer months, but I’ve found that with a bit of love and extra watering, I’m still able to get a good harvest. Besides, I’m obsessed with growing plants and I will continue to be in my garden well through November, hopefully December, barring any serious snow. Of course my camera was in-hand, so here is what I’ve got growing on as of late.
Monthly Archives: June 2010
I’ve been reading all things strawberry when it comes to recipes these days. Several weeks ago I happened to stumble upon one for strawberry scones posted by Annie, of Annie’s Eats. I was a little apprehensive about freezing the dough, but as it turns out they’re just as tasty right out of the freezer as they are direct from the mixing bowl!
I ended up making a few changes to the recipe, which I’ve noted with an asterisk. I’m also thinking about adding a bit of vanilla powder to the next batch. I had one small issue and had to get a bit creative which you will see in an upcoming photo. 🙂
adapted from Annie’s Eats who found it on The Way the Cookie Crumbles, originally posted at Good Things Catered, with modifications by me. How’s that for crediting the chain of sources! hahaha
1 large egg
1/4 C plain yogurt
1/2 C milk
zest from 1/2 lemon*
2 1/2 C apf* (all-purpose flour)
1/4 C sugar
2 tsp cream of tartar*
1 tsp baking soda*
(You can substitute c.o.t and b soda with 1 tbsp baking powder. I however was out.)
1/2 tsp salt
8 tbsp cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1 overflowing cup chopped strawberries
In a small bowl whisk together egg, milk, yogurt and lemon zest; set aside. In a food processor mix flour, sugar, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Add butter and pulse several times so that butter is cut into flour. Transfer flour mixture to a large mixing bowl, add strawberries and toss to coat. Add wet ingredients to the mixing bowl and gently fold together until a sticky dough forms. Transfer dough onto a well floured surface and pat into a disk approximately 8″ in diameter. Using a pizza wheel cut dough into 8 triangles, wrap in plastic wrap and freeze or bake for 16 minutes at 425.
Here is where I ran into trouble. My dough was STICKY, like turn the bowl upside down and it doesn’t move, sticky. When I made the first batch I followed the recipe (for the most part) and used 2 1/4 C flour. This was not enough, so when I transferred it onto my cutting board it just stuck to my hands. I coated the dough with more flour in hopes to get it to form into a workable state. No such luck. Solution, chill it in the freezer. Problem, my cutting board is quite large and my ice maker is in the way. Solution, creative stacking!
I’ve been berry busy this week making sure all those tasty strawberries I picked last Sunday found their way into delectable edibles. Translation: quality time with my canner! I also ended up with my first burn of the season. Unfortunately, I know it won’t be my last. One day I will have a large kitchen with a nice big stove. Then, I won’t be reaching over my canner for the back burners and constantly cooking the skin on my forearms!
Ask anyone their favorite fruit and I’m willing to bet 9 out of 10 give the answer strawberries. Unfortunately, the growing season is wicked short, especially for Early Glow, which happens to be my favorite variety! It lasts about 10 days, so if you blink, they are gonna be gone! Since this particular jam is a favorite among the members of my family, I decided to make 3 batches this year. I’m also making a conscious effort to cut back on my sugar intake, so I decided to try the low-sugar pectin. It reduces the required amount of sugar by 3 cups, and I was delighted to find the end result was still a very sweet and tasty jam!
How’s that old saying go? “What doesn’t kill you, only makes you stronger.” Well Mother Nature is testing that theory out on my garden for the SECOND time this week. Once again we are in the middle of a fierce storm with 60 mph winds, 1″ hail and flash flooding. Go figure because I just put cucumbers and beans in the ground as well as another planting of spinach and beets. Can we say, Seed Displacement!
Mother Nature clearly had a few fireworks of her own planned for Memorial Day. We received approximately 10″ of rain in less than 2 hours, which in turn lead to some SERIOUS flash flooding! There was ground shaking thunder, fire starting lightning, horizontal rain, uprooted trees, washed out roads and that was just on my street! Here are a few before and after shots of the havoc that was unleashed upon the little plot of heaven I call my garden.
6-1 Horizontal Mint
5-16 The first pea flowers of the season!