June 18, 2010

I Love This Time Of Year!

Orchard Hauls

I love this time of year, or well more truthfully I love the produce that is available! The hot weather, snakes and bugs I could do without, but the blueberries, tomatoes and other fruits and vegetables are pure heaven!

Yesterday Alexis, Grams, Pop and I set off to go on a little adventure. We went to lunch and then I wanted to go over to the orchard and see if they had any peas since mine didn't really do much this year. They had peas, but more importantly they had tomatoes and peaches! I was thrilled!

After we went to the orchard we cut across country to pick up some charcoal on the way home. My mom brought me our old charcoal grill that we used to use when we were camping at the lake and I wanted to break it in so to speak! Along the way we came across another orchard and they still had some strawberries! They also had blueberries so I was really thrilled given they are my favorite fruit and all!

We ended up with Swiss chard, peppermint, blueberries, strawberries, tomatoes, orange cherry tomatoes, cherries, raspberries (for Alexis), cabbage, peas and broccoli! Not bad at all!

This morning we had fruit for breakfast:

Local Berries

I had berries with granola and cocoa nibs. I had planned to have some Greek yogurt too, but my yogurt had gone the way of the Dodo bird!

For lunch we sliced the tomatoes and enjoyed them on sandwiches. Have I mentioned I love this time of year?

Now if I can just find some garlic scapes!

So what's available where you live?

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June 1, 2010

You Find The Best Stuff When You Go Out And About

From The Orchard

This morning I had to run some errands and once I got through I had the urge to go exploring. There was a road off the main road that I always wondered where it went so I took it. Jamison works from home most days and Lex opted to stay home with him, so I was sans kidlet and in the mood for an adventure. I had a general idea where I thought the road ended up, I had a county map in the car if I got really lost, and if the road did in fact end up where I thought it would, then I planned to go over to the library and see if I they had a copy of Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict (which they didn't).

So I've guessed you figured out that the road ended up where I thought it would. I love it when that happens. So since I was where I thought I'd be I decided to stop by the orchard before I went to the library to see what they had today hoping to find some strawberries (Score!) and possibly some peas (No score, but he told me they'd be in this weekend or early next week!) because I'm slightly obsessed with both.

Unfortunately this year we weren't able to swing the CSA. We didn't have the upfront cash we needed to sign up at the time because well life's a bitch and all that, but that didn't mean that I wanted to totally forgo eating locally. There is just nothing like fresh, local fruits and vegetables, especially when it comes to strawberries! The strawberries today were a little dirty as you can see, but nothing a little water won't fix, and oh my...The smell! The smell is heavenly!

So I happily picked up some broccoli, spring onions and strawberries. I'll venture over next week in search of peas, and if I can keep the effing ground hog (who I have nicknamed "Satan" in case you're wondering) off my porch and out of my garden containers which he seems to think is a free buffet, then I might have some peas of my own to harvest too!

So what are you all growing? What is available at your markets? What do you look forward to most? I'm curious.....

P.S. Two days in a row with an entry? A sign of the apocalypse I'm sure! ;oP As you can see I haven't been blogging much lately. I'm easing back in to it and for a while I may just be talking about food in general, but feel free to tell me your thoughts on what is going through my head too. I have a few recipes to share too, just be patient with me as my mind is cluttered at the moment and I'm trying to figure out where life is heading.

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September 8, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week 17 of Our CSA!

First up let's take a little peak into our CSA bag this week!

CSA Week 17

We ended up with baby carrots, garlic, yellow grape tomatoes, bell peppers (which I froze most of), a red chile pepper, jalapeños, more raspberries (which I'll most likely freeze for my sister since Alexis hasn't eaten all of the ones from last week yet and I'm not a fan), squash (which I froze), green beans (which I froze), red skinned potatoes, more basil (Which I hung up to dry...Anyone near me that needs any dried basil I can probably hook you up! ;op) and an eggplant which is buried under the basil.

We almost forgot to go pick up the CSA stuff given it was Labor Day, but I remembered just in the nick of time and we got over to the farm around 7 pm. Better late than never I guess!

Now let's talk about What's For Dinner?!

ddwfd2009

Tonight Jamison and Alexis want pizza so we're making some homemade pizza! Lex will have mozzarella, Parmesan, tomato sauce and black olives on a regular crust. Jamison will have rice mozzarella, tomato sauce, ground beef and pepperoni on a gluten free crust. And I'm going to play around with some sort of eggplant pizza for myself.

What are you having?

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September 1, 2009

A Note, What's For Dinner? And Week 16 Of Our CSA!

FYI

Hey everyone!

First up I just wanted to let you know that I may not be posting a recipe every day on Monday through Thursday anymore. I will post a recipe on the the days when I can, but on days like today when things get a bit crazy it will most likely just be What's For Dinner?! Now that Lex is in 1st grade we've got more work on our plate so it makes it a bit more difficult.

Now let's take a peak in our CSA bag this week!

CSA Week 16

We got more basil (I already hung this bunch up to dry!), more raspberries (which Alexis has been eating since I'm not a fan), some pears, bell peppers, green/yellow beans, Roma tomatoes, zucchini, yellow squash and fingerling potatoes.

Now let's talk bout What's For Dinner?!

Tonight I am actually craving spaghettti and for those of you who have been around Dianne's Dishes for a while you know that is rare! Jamison will have gluten free spaghetti with meat sauce, Lex will have fettuccine noodles with tomato sauce and I'll have fettuccine noodles with a mushroom garlic sauce, which I'll add onions, green peppers, more mushrooms and possibly some ground beef, topped with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. We'll also have garlic bread (gluten free for Jamison) and a salad for Lex and me.

What are you having?

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August 26, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week 15 Of Our CSA!

First up a peak at our CSA haul this week!

CSA Week 15

We got more basil (I'm drowning in basil!), cherry tomatoes (which Alexis devoured almost immediately), raspberries (of which I am not a fan, but Alexis has been eating), a large zucchini, a yellow squash, some heirloom tomatoes, jalapeñoes and some potatoes.

We also purchased the 40 tomatoes I mentioned earlier apart from our weekly share so I could can some:

CSA Week 15: 40 Pounds Of Tomatoes

The tomatoes were just beautiful! So ripe, so just perfect!

Now let's get down to What's For Dinner?!

ddwfd2009

Tonight Jamison starts his other class for the semester. Alexis and I will have veggie rice and some sliced tomatoes.

What are you having?

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August 19, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week 14 Of Our CSA!

First up let's take a peak into this week's CSA bag!

CSA Week 14

This week we got some red potatoes, squash, slicing tomatoes, a cucumber, some peppers, some jalapeñoes, some heirloom tomatoes, more basil and some green beans!

No I haven't dried any of the previous basil. I now have two "vases" of basil sitting on my counter. I've got to get around to that...Still no freezer space for pesto! I'm planing on using some of the potatoes, squash and tomatoes tonight in my meal.

Now let's talk about What's For Dinner?!

ddwfd2009

Since they didn't have lasagna last night and I had the stuff all ready to go I'm going to make a slow cooker lasagna for Jamison and Miss G. I plan to make a Ratatouille type dish for myself.

What are you having?

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August 13, 2009

What's For Dinner? And What We Found At The Farmer's Market!

First let's talk some Farmer's Market goodies!

I've been meaning to make it back over to the Farmer's Market for a while now, but something always comes up. You know how life goes. But this afternoon Miss G and I headed over to hopefully find watermelon, cucumbers and tomatoes and we did and then some!

Farmer's Market Haul

As I said we found our tomatoes, cucumbers and our watermelon! We also found some blueberries, some okra, some peaches and some goats cheese!

I was ecstatic to see the okra, it's the first I've seen all year. Okra isn't really easy to find here in Maryland either, but it's getting easier. When we first moved here in 1999 I couldn't' find it anywhere and people look at me like I was crazy if I asked if they had any!

The peaches are so ripe you can smell them five feet away! I was also happy to see some late in the season blueberries and of course if you've been around Dianne's Dishes for a while you know about my adoration of goat cheese in general! Now that's what I call a productive trip!

Now let's get down to What's For Dinner?!?!

ddwfd2009

Tonight is a mixed bag and it's because of me this time. Jamison and Alexis want spaghetti and as you know I'm about spaghettied out! So they are having spaghetti and I'm going to make a fresh corn chowder. I think I may also go ahead and cook up the okra to freeze.

What are you having?

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August 12, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week 13 Of Our CSA And A Peak At What We're Harvesting At Home!

First up let's take a peak at our CSA bag this week!

CSA Week 13

We got zucchini, squash, another melon, some more hard necked garlic, more basil, yellow snap beans, fingerling potatoes, peppers, tomatoes and edamame!

The basil went in with the basil from the previous weeks:

CSA: Three Weeks Worth Of Basil!

How's that for a big bunch of basil! I have used some of it, but still haven't gotten around to drying it yet. Still no room in the freezer for pesto either! That's about 18 inches of basil from one side to the other!

Now let's give you an idea of what's starting to come in in our little front porch container "garden" every few days or so:

From Our "Garden"

Alexis usually munches on what we pick faster than I can get a photograph! Tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, eggplant, jalapeñoes and potatoes! We've also had some bell peppers, a few chick peas that we've been munching on right off the plant, some banana peppers and peas.

If you noticed in the background of the top CSA picture there are some apples that came off our trees. Out of all of our apples that the tree made, we were able to save 6 of them! The deer got the rest. Oh well! I'm going to do a garden update soon...I just need to find the time to sit down and write down what is happening!

Now let's talk about dinner!

ddwfd2009

Yesterday totally got away from me and I didn't get around to posting What's For Dinner? so I'm going to give you two for the price of one today!

Last night we had barbeque chicken from the slow cooker, roasted fingerling potatoes and fresh tomatoes with ranch dressing.

Tonight we're having turkey cutlets, yellow snap beans, brown rice, tomatoes and cucumbers.

What are you having?

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August 4, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week 12 Of Our CSA!

First up let's take a peak into our CSA bag from this week!

CSA Week 12

This week was quite the bounty! We had shallots, red potatoes, another cantaloupe, zucchini, squash, yellow snap beans, beets, basil, a bag of slicing tomatoes and a bag of cherry tomatoes!

Now let's talk about the beets...

I knew it was inevitable that at some point we'd most likely end up with a few beets. I'll be honest with you and tell you up front I'm not a fan. I've tried them roasted, pan fried, boiled, pureed into soup, deep fried, steamed, pickled, raw, etc. and to me they just have a really earthy flavor....Well ok they taste like dirt to me! Sorry, but they do! Someone told me you can make a chocolate cake out of beets. This interests me I must admit, though I will readily tell you one part of me is all for this idea, while the other part of me wonders if it would be a big waste of chocolate cake! ;oP I'm not sure what I'll do with these....

And basil...I still have the other two bunches from the previous two weeks in a large glass of water on the counter next to the sink. The other two bunches are still really fresh, believe it or not and have actually grown! Bet you didn't know you could "grow" basil hydroponically. I have the ingredients to make pesto, but haven't done it yet because I still don't have freezer space!

We also got a cantaloupe last week and let me tell you this is one of the best cantaloupes I've ever had! Firm, yet sweet...It was just perfect! The county in Tennessee where I grew up prides itself on its cantaloupes, but let me tell you this one easily gave them a run for their money! Yum!

Oh well. Now let's get down to What's For Dinner?!

Tonight Jamison is having steak and mashed potatoes. (Do you see a pattern with his food! ;oP) Noelle made me start thinking about veggie burgers with her response to What's For Dinner? yesterday so Alexis and I are having homemade veggie burgers on flat bread with a tomato salad.

What are you having?

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July 28, 2009

What's For Dinner? And Week 11 Of Our CSA!

ddwfd2009

Whoa what a day!

This morning I had a meeting so Jamison took Miss G over to camp. I got home and then not too long after that headed back over to pick up Miss G. Alexis ate lunch (which she helped back...black olives, a clementine and cantaloupe...How's that for varied? ;oP) and then laid down for her nap, while I did a few things, and when she got up we discovered that one of her butterflies had "hatched". (She got a butterfly garden for her birthday. It was sort of our "big" science experiment for the summer!) So we had to venture back down the mountain, and back over to the grocery store in the next town over, to grab some carnations to be sprinkled with sugar water for the emerging butterflies! It's been go, go, go!

And now to dinner!

Tonight we're having cheeseburgers. Jamison will have tater (I still hate that word!) tots. I've also made a macaroni salad that I wanted to try out for the weekend. Our Sunday school class is getting together food to take to the shelter on Sunday and I wanted to try out the salad before I made it to send! (It turned out good...You'll see it soon!) We'll probably have some fresh tomatoes and cucumbers as well.

What are you having?

And now what we got this week from our CSA!:

CSA Week 11

As the bags get bigger it's hard to fit it all into the shot! We got a bag of new potatoes, a cantaloupe, cucumbers, 2 large tomatoes, a bag of cherry tomatoes, another hard necked garlic, more basil (I haven't even touched the basil from last week yet...It's still in a glass of water on the counter!) and a bunch of squash!

I'm going to hang the basil up to dry later today. I'm going to end up freezing part of the squash most likely too. I'll have to find room in the freezer...Somewhere! Everything else we'll enjoy as the week goes along.

Have I mentioned how my CSA surprise on Monday is one of my favorite parts of the week??

I'm off. Hopefully I'll be back tomorrow with a recipe. School starts for us on Monday so I'm up to my ears in planning. I'll definitely be back for What's For Dinner? though so if there isn't a recipe I'll catch you tomorrow afternoon!

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July 21, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week 10 of Our CSA!

First up this week's CSA bag!

CSA Week 10

We got yellow squash, zucchini, cucumbers, tomatoes and lots of basil!

I'll most likely dry the basil, since I'm not a huge fan of the taste of fresh basil. I thought about making pesto, but the problem with pesto is that after I've had a tablespoon or two I never finish the rest of it. I suppose I could make a batch and freeze what I don't want immediately, but I'm a little low on freezer space right now. The rest of the items will most likely be used before the end of the week!

Now let's talk about dinner!

ddwfd2009

Tonight we're doing a little heavier than we normally have during the week. We're going to have barbeque chicken, bacon cheese fries, squash/zucchini fritters, sliced tomatoes and cucumbers and homemade bread.

What are you having?

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July 15, 2009

What's For Dinner? And Week 9 Of Our CSA!

First up let's take a look at what we got from our CSA this week:

CSA Week 9

Swiss chard, potatoes, green beans, some more stiff necked garlic, plum tomatoes and some green tomatoes! When I saw the green tomatoes I was so happy. I've been thinking about making some "fried" green tomatoes, but I didn't want to sacrifice any of my own tomatoes to do so...Now I don't have to! I had meant to share this yesterday, but I got side tracked. What can you do?

Now let's get down to what's for dinner!

ddwfd2009

Tonight we're having steaks. Seasoned for Jamison and Alexis and topped with Mango Black Bean Salsa for me. We're also having corn on the cob and swiss chard (or Alexis and I will anyway) and Jamison will have some roasted potatoes.

What are you having?

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July 9, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus What We Picked Up at the Orchard!

From the Orchard

This morning Alexis and I set off to go over the mountain to the library. While we were over there we also decided that it would be a good idea to stop by the orchard. Her mission: Peas! (And as you can see we found them!) My mission: Blueberries to make some jam! (We got those too! And the jam turned out great...You'll see it tomorrow!)

We also got some small plums, yellow beans, cucumbers, yellow tomatoes and "ugly" tomatoes. What are those you ask? Those are the ones that some people won't buy because they have a vein here or a spot there. Perfectly good, perfectly delicious vine ripe tomatoes that some people are too snobby to buy! So for a dollar more, you get twice as many tomatoes. Works for me!

Now let's talk about What's For Dinner?....

ddwfd2009

Alexis and Jamison want spaghetti for dinner. At first I wasn't really all that thrilled by the idea (I never am!) but after our visit to the orchard my tune changed! Jamison and Alexis are having their standard (noodles and sauce for Lex, noodles, ground beef and sauce for Jamison) and I'm going to use some of the things I picked up this morning, along with some herbs from my front porch, to make a fresh pasta topper.

What are you having?

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July 2, 2009

What's For Dinner? As Well As Our CSA Week 7!

ddwfd2009

Well as you can see I didn't have time to get a recipe in last night. Oh well. Life happens. You just have to go with the flow!

Tonight we're having a slow cooker pot roast, with roasted fingerling potatoes from our CSA, as well as left over corn and asparagus. Alexis is having homemade chicken noodle soup.

What are you having?

And now let's talk about what we got from our CSA earlier this week.

CSA Week Seven

We got snow peas, fingerling potatoes, more garlic, 2 large cucumbers and some green beans. We've already used one of the cucumbers and some of the snow peas. I'm cooking the fingerling potatoes with the roast for tonight in the slow cooker. I plan on using the green beans on Saturday for our 4th of July celebration. (Oh how I wish I had a grill!) Next week our CSA has the week off because they are harvesting wheat, so we'll get back to updating the week after!

Hope you're all having a good day!

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June 24, 2009

What's For Dinner? Alexis' Birthday Edition! Plus Our CSA Week Six.

What's For Dinner Alexis Birthday Edition

As is the tradition at our house Miss G gets to decide what she wants for dinner on her birthday and she has chosen homemade pizza! Sounds good to me! (If you want to see my mushy tribute to my little girl hop over to Daffodil Lane and see what I had to say about her 6th birthday.)

What are you having?

Now let's talk about what we got from our CSA this week since I forgot to share yesterday!

CSA Week Six

We got more potatoes, red spring onions, asparagus, snow peas, another hard stemmed garlic and some sort of green that I'm not exactly sure what it is. I'm waiting on the newsletter to be sure!

This CSA thing is fun!

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June 18, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus What We Picked Up At The Farmer's Market!

Farmer's Market 6/18/2009

Today was the first day of our local Farmer's Market so Alexis and I ventured over to see what we could find. I had hoped they would have some peas, but alas we didn't find any. We did however find several other things! We got some eggs though next week I'm going to see if I can find someone that is selling them in paper cartons instead of Styrofoam since I can't recycle that here. I finally found some rosemary plants and picked up some more thyme just because. Alexis picked out a loaf of brioche from a local bakery that had a stall. I also got some more garlic scapes...I just love garlic scapes! And last but not least Alexis wanted to try some blue potatoes so we got a couple to try! If she likes them we'll get more next week. I really like the blue variety. I just love the Farmer's Market!

Now let's get down to What's For Dinner!

ddwfd2009

Tonight Jamison is having steak and rice. Alexis and I are having black beans, some left over corn and sliced tomatoes.

What are you having?

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June 16, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week Five Of Our CSA!

CSA Week Five

First let's start with this week's CSA bundle!

We got more strawberries, carrots, red skinned potatoes (my favorite!), shell peas and something that is either a leek or onion! Not exactly sure. At first I thought it was hard necked garlic, but I don't think so now. I'm waiting for this week's newsletter to know for sure! It has a stiff neck and is a bit strong for a leek, but I'm just not sure! Either way it's good though!

Update: 6:01 PM: It was garlic when I cut into it! It went well with the roasted potatoes!

Now let's move on to what's for dinner!

ddwfd2009

I have some beef stew meat in the slow cooker and am cooking it like I do pot roast. We are also going to have roasted red skinned potatoes and a spinach salad for Lex and Me. (Note: Several of you have asked me what a spinach salad is. Nine times out of ten when I make a tossed salad I use spinach as the base. Alexis and I are big fans of spinach!)

What are you having?

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June 9, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week Four Of Our CSA!

CSA Week Four

First off let's look at what we got from the CSA yesterday! More strawberries, asparagus, lettuce, spring onions and mint! Jamison amused me when he got home because he told me something in the bag "reeked" and he had had to drive home with his windows down. I assumed there was garlic or onions or something and chalked it up to his overly sensitive nose, but his idea of "reeking" was the mint! That amused me given fresh mint is one of my favorite smells! Silly Jamison! ;oP

You'll see a recipe up tomorrow using the strawberries and mint. It's simple, but so delicious!

Now Let's talk about dinner!

What's For Dinner Graphic

Tonight we're having pizza! Jamison will get a gluten free crust with pepperoni and ground beef. Alexis will get a whole grain crust with cheese and black olives. And for me...I'm going to play around with another Portobello Mushroom pizza! If it's any good I'm sure you'll see it soon!

What are you having?

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June 2, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week Three Of Our CSA!

First let's take a look what we got from our CSA this week!

CSA Week Three

More strawberries (Have I mentioned how much I LOVE strawberry season??), garlic scapes, chard, asparagus (Also a favorite!) and radishes! I just love Mondays...It's like a little surprise waiting for me at the end of the day each week!

Now let's get down to What's For Dinner?!?!!

What's For Dinner Graphic

Tonight we are having company so things are a bit more fancy that usual....

For dinner I've got a pork loin I'm going to cut into chops. We're going to have mashed potatoes, a carrot/fennel dish and I'm going to play around with the chard/garlic scapes. I also plan to have a tossed salad with a choice of either Ranch of Blue Cheese dressing.

For dessert we are having strawberries, peaches and blueberries, on top of Paula Deen's Pound Cake with some whipped cream. I'm going to make some gluten free peanut butter cookies for Jamison, since he obviously can't have the cake.

What are you having?

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May 26, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus Week Two Of Our CSA!

CSA Week Two

This week with our CSA we got strawberries and asparagus. I'm in heaven! Two of my all time favorite things! Alexis and I had some strawberries last night in our salads. Tonight I plan to utilize some of the asparagus and some more strawberries. Yum!

Now let's get down to What's For Dinner?!

What's For Dinner Graphic

Tonight Jamison is having rice and steak tips. Lex will have some steak as well, along with rice, asparagus and strawberries. I'm going to have some sautéed mushrooms, some brown rice and I'm going to play around with an asparagus and strawberry salad.

What are you having?

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May 19, 2009

What's For Dinner? Plus the First Week of Our CSA!

What's For Dinner Graphic

Tonight we're going to have pasta. Jamison and Alexis will have spaghetti and I'm going to make a fresh pasta topper for me. Alexis and I will also have a mixed salad.

Update: 3:52 PM: OK, I didn't realize we're out of ground beef. I tried to sell Jamison on ground chicken for the spaghetti sauce, but he wasn't convinced. So we're going to have steaks, baked potatoes and roasted asparagus instead!

What are you having?

CSA Week One

Now let's talk about what we got from our CSA the first week!

The first pick up gave us two types of lettuce, some dandelion greens, spinach and a bunch of asparagus. They also gave Jamison the handy dandy tote you see in the back of the picture so he can use it to pick up our future shares. There was also a copy of Edible Chesapeake. How cool is that?

For lunch I made a big salad with the greens, lettuce and spinach. I'm going to use some of the asparagus and spinach in my pasta topper tonight and of course the greens/lettuce for the salad. Funnily Alexis has been wanting to try dandelion greens for a while now, but since I don't know the history of our yard since we've been here for less than a year I wouldn't let her just try them out of our yard in case the people who lived here before us were big pesticide or herbicide fans. So now she'll get to try them! Fun, fun!

Local and organic...How much better can it get? I can't wait to see what next week will bring!

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June 11, 2008

What's In The Bag? Otherwise Known As What We Got At The Farmer's Market!

What's In the Bag?

Dear Lord it's a beautiful day! It's currently 88 degrees with 31% humidity and a breeze of about 5 miles per hour as I sit here barefoot on the front porch watching Alexis play in her sand box and type this little missive. You've gotta love a good breeze and wireless internet! This is what summer should be! ;o)

On Wednesdays from 4-7 PM there is a Farmer's Market in our local park. This is the first time we've made it to a Farmer's Market this season. We missed last week's opening, but I marked my calendar so I wouldn't forget this week and I'm so glad I didn't! The selection was amazing! There was everything from fruit to vegetables to yarn to baked goods to plants to homemade doggie treats! Oh my!

My main hope for today was to find some peas and we lucked out! I also hoped for some strawberries and wouldn't you know we got those too!

Farmer's Market Goodies

We also ended up with a bunch of radishes, some asparagus, a few bell peppers, some sweet cherries and a purple basil plant. Not bad at all and MUCH cheaper than the supermarket! (For example the strawberries were $4.50 and the same sized container at the store has been running around $5.99. The cherries were $3.50 and at the store they've been running $4.99/pound...You get the idea!) Plus it's all local...What's not to like about that?

Now...What do I want to do with all these lovely goodies? ;oP

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November 5, 2007

Autumn Weekend

We had a lazy, hazy Autumn weekend. I just love this time of year. The sun was shining, but it was cool and breezy. It was simply the perfect Autumn weather! It was just too nice to stay cooped up inside.

We took Alexis to the zoo and then proceeded to take a drive out through the country. The leaves are just gorgeous! Along the way we happened upon a local orchard and of course we stopped in to see what they had!

Fall Orchard Goodness

Alexis and I got some Gala apples and we got some Granny Smith apples for Jamison. We also got some homemade grape jelly, strawberry jam and pumpkin butter. And the best part...The part I wait all year long in anticipation for are the Concord grapes! I just LOVE Concord grapes!! They are well worth the wait!

This orchard in particular is open ten months of the year. They even have winter apples through January! We will most definitely be making our way back since it's less than 10 miles from our house! Maybe next time we'll pick up some of their homemade baked goods as well. They smelled heavenly!

I hope you each had a wonderful weekend yourself. I'm off to enjoy the lovely Autumn afternoon. I'll be back with new recipes starting tomorrow!

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September 1, 2007

Saturday Farmer's Market

AVeggieVenture2007FreshfromtheFarmersMarket125.gif
* Thanks to A Veggie Venture for this great Farmer's Market icon! :o)

Alexis and I usually venture over to the Farmer's Market on Tuesday mornings, but this week we didn't make it so we decided to swing by Saturday morning instead. Oh my! What a chaotic mess! They even had two police officers directing traffic! We'll be sure to go on Tuesdays from now on, but we got some lovely fruits and veggies and after all isn't that what it's all about?

Saturday Farmer's Market

Alexis also picked out a cucumber, but it didn't make it into the picture because he was still hiding in the bag.

Sweet Banana Peppers

The sweet banana peppers were gorgeous this morning. They are a childhood favorite. My grandfather used to grow them each summer and now I do, though my plants succumbed to the drought this year. Alexis has grown to love them too. We usually just eat them raw as a snack or in a salad.

Fairytale Eggplant

They called these "Fairytale" eggplants, but it's basically just a baby eggplant. I like to sauté them with a little garlic and olive oil or stuff them mushrooms and spinach. They are also good in lasagna.

Orange Grape Tomatoes

The yellow grape tomatoes were also lovely this morning. I'm going to make some veggie and shrimp kabobs for dinner with wild rice.

Red Grape Tomatoes

Ditto for the red grape tomatoes.

Okra

We even lucked upon some okra! You'll be seeing that coming into play this week too! ;o)

Small Plums

And lastly these tiny little plums! They are roughly the size of large grapes and the lady who sold them to me told me they aren't "eating" plums, but cooking plums. I don't know what I'll do with them yet, but most likely I'll make some plum jam or something of that nature.

I hope you are all having a wonderful Saturday! I know we are! :o)

Posted by Dianne at 12:22 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 16, 2007

Busy, Busy, Busy!

My parents are visiting from Tennessee and we've been running about here and there doing fun things. We even swung by the Farmer's Market to grab some corn and my Mom brought some tomatoes with her when she came!

There is just nothing like a vine ripe tomato!

Tomatoes

And fresh sweet corn can't be beat either!

Corn on the Cob

I'll be back in the next day or so with some new recipes...A Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip cookie that Jamison took to work as a treat and some Blueberry Ice Cream that I made for my Dad (he's a big snacker and ice cream eater!)

Stay tuned! ;o)

Posted by Dianne at 8:54 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 10, 2007

Fresh From The Famer's Market

AVeggieVenture2007FreshfromtheFarmersMarket125.gif
* Thanks to A Veggie Venture for this great Farmer's Market icon! :o)

This summer I've been utilizing the Farmer's Market more than I usually do since it's been so hot and dry and my garden isn't doing so stellar this summer as it did last year. Alexis enjoys going to the Farmer's Market and picking out things that interest her, but mostly she just wants more peas, cucumbers and tomatoes! ;o)

This week this is what we found:

More Farmer's Market

Cherries, plums, yellow tomatoes, cucumbers and more peas.

The yellow tomatoes this year are just wonderful!

Yellow Tomatoes

They are great as is, in salad or even as a pasta topping! They are very sweet, with just the right acidity. They are truly some of the best I've had in years.

Cucumbers!

Cucumbers

Lovely, lovely cucumbers! There is something just wonderful about freshly picked cucumbers! I didn't plant any cucumbers this year. They didn't have them when I initially bought my plants and then I forgot to add some later. These little gems are especially tasty and Alexis and I have been really enjoying them.

And cherries!

Dark Cherries

I'm a HUGE fresh cherry fan and the ones that are local are especially delicious! You just can't beat that tree ripe goodness!

And lastly Methley Plums!

Methley Plums

I had never had these before, but they're delicious! They are smaller than most of the plums I am used to (about the size of a walnut), but they truly are the sweetest plums I've ever tried! Hopefully they'll have some the next time we go too! I think they would make an excellent cobbler or pie!

So that was our pull from this week's market. I wonder what we'll find next week? ;o)

Posted by Dianne at 11:29 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 3, 2007

Fresh From The Farmer's Market

AVeggieVenture2007FreshfromtheFarmersMarket125.gif
* Thanks to A Veggie Venture for this great Farmer's Market icon! :o)

This morning we set out for one of our adventures and we passed a road side Farmer's Market where there were lots of yummy things, so would couldn't help but stop!

Yummy Goodness

We got peaches, peas, purple potatoes, blueberries, honey and cucumbers. Alexis picked out everything but the peaches. Those were for me, though I'll share!

The blueberries, besides just for cereal and such, are for the 4th of July desert I'm making for tomorrow. More about that then! ;o)

Blueberries

The stand we stopped at had a pick them yourself option. I think we'll have to go back and do that soon! We didn't have time today though.

Alexis thought the purple potatoes were cool:

Purple Potatoes

Now if she actually will eat them, we'll see about that! ;o) Strangely she's not much of a potato person, though Jamison and I both are.

Peas, honey and cucumbers:

Honey, Peas and Cucumbers

I think we're going to make some risotto tonight and use the peas since Jamison is working late. As for the cucumbers, Alexis goes through about 2 of them a day! She loves them and so do I. And last but not least honey...We didn't really need more honey, but Alexis thought the bottle was cute and you can never have enough honey! We go through it fast around here!

The main reason for the stop was when I saw they had peaches:

Peaches

There is nothing like a sweet, juicy peach picked right of the tree! They had a pick it yourself option for those too (and cherries as well)! I'm going to freeze some of them for use in cobbler or ice cream later and enjoy some of them fresh or in smoothies.

What a great find! We'll most definitely be going back soon! :o)

Posted by Dianne at 3:27 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

June 26, 2007

Fresh From The Famer's Market

AVeggieVenture2007FreshfromtheFarmersMarket125.gif
* Thanks to A Veggie Venture for this great Farmer's Market icon! :o)

Alexis and I made several great finds this morning at the Farmer's Market!

Fresh From The Farmer's Market

Heirloom tomatoes:

Heirloom tomatoes

I lost a couple when I actually sat my backpack down on the bag of tomatoes. Rats! I'll most likely make a tomato, mozzarella and rosemary salad among other things.

Squash and zucchini:

Squash and Zucchini

I think I'll make some zucchini bread and some squash cakes.

And this white sage plant, also known as bee sage:

White Sage (Bee Sage)

I had never heard of it before, but I'm always up for trying new herbs!

It was a nice little journey this morning. What's better than fresh tomatoes??

Posted by Dianne at 11:45 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack