Archive for August, 2011

Gluten be gone

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011

This is one of those posts that could be as long, or as short, as I want it to be. Make it too long and I risk boring you all to death and sounding like a hypochondriac. Make it too short, and it sounds like I’m taking off on some fad diet without any forethought. […]


Monday, August 29th, 2011

Someone gave us a butterfly-raising kit for SofĂ­a’s birthday. We had to send away for the caterpillars. Oh, she was so excited – “Mom, have the caterpillars come yet? Have they come? Will they come today?” And we got to watch the whole life cycle of the Painted Lady butterfly. Unfortunately we missed all the […]

Seasonal supper – fish, zukes, and squash blossoms

Sunday, August 28th, 2011

Mahi mahi from a fishing friend (traded for a jar of fresh salsa), minimally seasoned and seared in butter with a cold center. Zucchini and onions sauteed with basil; squash blossoms stuffed with cheddar and tomatillos and fried in buttermilk batter. Homegrown: squash blossoms, tomatillos, eggs, onions, basil. Traded: fish for salsa. Staples: oil, flour. […]

Battening down the hatches

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

This post is for my mother (who seems to be worried sick about me and mine over here in the path of hurricane Irene) so she can stop imagining horrible scenes from the movie Twister and see that we are at least somewhat prepared, barring trees falling and other Acts of God. Josh (aka KnotMaster) […]

Seasonal supper – tomato bisque

Friday, August 26th, 2011

Tomato bisque, no-knead challah, steamed green beans, roasted mushrooms. And peach cobbler for dessert! Homegrown: tomatoes, basil, beans, garlic. Staples: flour, onions, carrots,. Storebought: cream, mushrooms, capers. Fresh tomato-basil bisque (makes about 1 1/2 gallons; can easily be halved). If you’ve ever had the tomato bisque from La Madeleine, this tastes like that. Delicious! And […]

Dumb bees

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

After the Spring crops were out, I mowed one of my biggest middle beds and covered it with a thick layer of all the old chicken compost. Then I had the rest of the growing season to fill – what to do with this huge, fertilicious bed? I knew bee flower forage would get scarce […]

Holy broomcorn, batman

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

On a whim (doubtless seduced by some glossy, brightly edited seed catalog on a cold winter’s day) I decided to grow broom corn this year. I thought it would fun to see, and then I could make an old-fashioned broom for the kitchen. I didn’t know what I was getting into… I thought they’d be […]

Bee inspection – Aug ’11

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

I try not to inspect the bees too often. Unlike other livestock these are essentially wild creatures and disrupting their hives frequently can cause them undue stress and make them prone to disease. So I try to open the hives only when I spy a problem. This is the problem I tried to diagnose yesterday: […]

Operation Yard Rats Out Part 2

Sunday, August 21st, 2011

It took a long time (too long, and I’m blaming the severe fatigue caused by this pregnancy) but we’ve finished the deer fence. I went out today and got the last of the gates installed just before the thunderstorms hit. The fact that it’s lightweight has pros and cons. It’s great that it was cheap, […]

Quite possibly the grossest thing

Saturday, August 20th, 2011

No one ever said farming or homesteading are glamorous occupations. Everyone expects it to be dirty, right? Muddy? Sometimes stinky? Well I’ve dealt with some things in the past two years that are grosser than even I – and I spend my free time reading farming books and magazines – had come to expect. There’s […]