Good enough to eat

Yes, I actually took it outside to photograph. When purchasing my next house, kitchen light will be a huge consideration!

For some reason, I bagged up and froze the entire first batch of tomato sauce. Today, I'm making the second and we'll be having it fresh over some pasta and probably with some CSA eggplant.

That's about 8 pounds of red tomatoes and one nice looking heirloom from the CSA some orange cherries that were in the 'fridge; some yellow cherries that I picked up this morning, along with some garlic and peppers (also in the pan), at the farmers' market; 3 enormous onions; 3 varieties of my own fresh basil; and some dried herbs, seasonings, and olive oil from the kitchen cupboard. As it was all tossed in above; and after a stir, below.

I thought for a sec this morning that my oven wasn't working, but all is well. It hasn't even been in for a half-hour and already smells AMAZING!

I can't wait for supper!


CSA Week 3:

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This is the full share -- two quarts of strawberries, about two quarts of sugar pea pods, two bunches of garlic scapes, a bunch of radishes, and a large head of romaine lettuce (somewhat obscured by the styling of the radishes). The strawberries were probably the last we'll receive this season -- they were really yum, too.

I made Strawberry & Feta Salad using some of the romaine and garlic scapes, and with strawberries that I had to buy at the store because the ones from the CSA box sort of disappeared. It was delicious! I used nearly a quart of strawberries in the salad (because I had them, and why not?), and would probably cut the oil at least in half next time.

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We grilled some shrimp on skewers over the weekend and I cut up the left-overs to use in my standby summertime pasta salad (in place of the most-often-used tuna) -- I also used some scapes and some thinly sliced radish. There were more radishes in this week's box (below) and I'll be pickling a la Margene!

CSA Week 4:

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This week there were two bags of spicy mixed greens (not shown because they were in the sink at photo time and I couldn't wait because the light was fading!), some swiss chard, two bunches of radishes, two bags of sugar snap peas, two pints of Michigan blueberries, FOUR more bunches of garlic scapes, a zucchini, and a patty-pan squash.

I think I'm going to try roasting some sugar snap peas... I love roasting stuff! I haven't quite decided about the squash -- I love squash, though, so it'll get eaten even if it's just steamed or sauteed... or roasted. In fact, we roasted some zucchini last night and I have some in my lunch today, along with some of those spicy mixed greens and blueberries.

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Don't they look fabulous?

Speaking of blueberries, Katie made the most amazingly simple, delicious, not-too-sweet dessert the other day -- Scottish Blueberry Dessert with English Custard. I can't stop thinking about it -- how easy it was, how to play around with it, and how it is that my grandmother never made it. It seems so much like something Grandma would have made.


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This is my half (I'm splitting with Ali) of the Week 2 delivery from our CSA. I've packed my lunch with a little bit of everything today.

Is it lunch time yet?

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I can't stop looking at it. I picked up eggs on the way home, too. Our CSA offers an egg share, but they were sold out by the time I signed up; they also offer additional shares in fruit, honey, maple syrup, bread, and late-season produce. We kept it fairly simple this year as first-timers, though we did each buy a late-season share in addition to the full share that we split.

I forgot to photograph the Week 1 delivery. Imagine... two types of popping corn, fresh rhubarb, fresh asparagus, and wee tender new garlic.

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The eggs are from a hobby farmer named Matt that I play phone tag with a lot. Eventually, we connect and I usually pick up a few dozen eggs at a time. This week, they were mostly shades of soft, gorgeous green.

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Heh. I can't stop looking at these, either.

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That's one of my brand new, home-grown, heirloom tomatoes! It's just a baby, but it'll grow. Kate's are even bigger -- she's blogging, so you can see for yourself (and say "Hello!").

The buttons are all sewn on the baby sweater for Project Spectrum June=Green! I've the day off tomorrow -- sisters are coming into town -- and a busy weekend planned (including the photographing of a small garden wedding on Sunday) (but also Monday off); even so, I'd like to get it written up. I love how it turned out!

It's what's for dinner (with leftovers for lunch)


I had a very busy day on Saturday.  I wanted to make a good dinner, but didn't have the time or temperament for slicing, stirring, simmering, and such.

Country-style pork ribs 

The cute little Nesco was a wedding gift from the Marshfield aunts and uncles.  The size is such that it doubles as a pretty good-sized slow cooker.  It's seen a fair bit more action than usual so far this year.

Howling Wolf BBQ Sauce 

I had purchased two varieties of Howling Wolf BBQ Sauce to try, and "The Original" was howling "ribs" to me.  The other variety I have is Cranberry Orange and I think I'll be doing some of this in a few days with a little of that.

Ready to roast

The ribs.  Country-style.  I rubbed half of them with Chicago Steak Seasoning from Penzey's that I had in the cupboard.  The other half were seasoned simply with salt and cracked pepper.

Cracked Pepper

I roasted them in the regular oven, first, for 15 minutes on each side at 400F.

Roasted and ready

I popped them into the roaster.


Poured on the sauce and cooked 'em slowly for 5-6 hours ('til DH came home).  The meat was falling right off the bone!  In the end, it was impossible to determine which ribs were heavily or lightly seasoned -- they were all delicious!  The sauce was excellent -- rich and flavorful, with exactly the right combo of ingredients for the perfect kick.

Sunday lunch

It was so delicious and I was so hungry that I didn't even take pictures.  Those are leftovers that I had for lunch the next day.  Cold.  Nom.  So good!!

Let it be known!


I have ornamented the tree with things most dear to me.

I had cookies for brunch yesterday; peanut butter balls and homemade caramels today.  I did just have some minestrone soup... with cookies for dessert... and a peanut butter ball chaser.  Oy.  Soon it will be all gone.

Speaking of minestrone soup -- this is a great recipe and QUICK, just as the title would lead you to believe.  It's a delicious, warm, nourishing soup that provides a great meal even when you're pressed for time -- as we all are this week -- throw in some ham or turkey, if you've got it, or some other kinds of beans, it's easy to play around with, too.  I have no idea where it came from -- it's scratched on the back of one of the kids' old "Book It" forms (my note from 12/4/93 says, "GOOD!)).


16-oz. can cannellini beans
16 oz. can red kidney beans
16 oz. can seasoned-for-pasta tomatoes
4 c. chicken broth
1 box frozen chopped spinach
1/2 c. orzo
season to taste

Combine beans and tomatoes in a large pot.  Add chicken broth, spinach, and orzo.  Bring to a boil, stirring to break up spinach.  Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, or until orzo is tender.  Makes about 10 cups of soup.

See?  Couldn't be easier.  You've never tasted a more delicious "homemade" soup that came from so many cans.