a semi-rural, mini-homestead on 1/2 acre in Vermont's Green Mountains

Fresh Eggs, Organic Rocks, Pick-Your-Own Weeds, Foolish Pursuits!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Frugal Meal Cycle #1

Dinner # 1:  7.5 lb Roaster chicken, broccoli &cheese cornbread, garden snap peas
Dinner #2 :  Black Beans and Rice
Dinner # 3 : Southwestern Shepards Pie, made with leftover black beans, rice and chicken. Topped with mashed sweet potatoes.
Dinner # 4: Chicken Carcass soup and herbed dumplings

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Garden Time!!

The weather has finally started to warm up....sort of... and be sunny. Glynn and I have been working hard on the garden. A few weeks ago we had it tilled by a neighbor and it is now twice the size it was last year. Yesterday we bought 16 bales of mulch hay, and got 1/2 truckload of well composted cow manure. We also tilled up a new garden out in the "back forty". That got planted before I went to Haiti, with carrots, beets, parsnips, kale, lettuce, cabbage and 3 asparagus plant. I've been making "squash piles" like crazy too. I think squash is my favorite thing to grow.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

My Liberal Identity:

You are a Working Class Warrior, also known as a blue-collar Democrat. You believe that the little guy is getting screwed by conservative greed-mongers and corporate criminals, and you’re not going to take it anymore.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Gerty’s Balsamic-Sugared Pearl Onions 
This is a fantastic condiment to serve with all meats- especially beef. At holiday time it’s a beautiful addition to offer in a dish alongside of prime rib- or even with little rare roast beef finger sandwiches. More than once I’ve made fancy glass crocks of these little gems to pass out for Christmas gifts and they’ve always been received well. 
3 T. butter
Two 1 lb. bags of frozen pearl onions (may use fresh if you wish to take the time)
¾ c. balsamic vinegar
1/2 c. apple jelly
¼ c. sugar
salt and pepper to taste   
Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat, cook the frozen onions for 10-12 minutes, until most of the moisture is gone and the onions are tender. Add vinegar, jelly and sugar into onions and stir until sugar is dissolved and jelly is melted. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally until liquid is reduced to a thick, glaze consistency. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Chill. Serve chilled or may heat slightly over a warm flame.  


Thursday, August 5, 2010

Making Sauerkraut

 Sauerkrat Update #2 Total Failure!!!
  Finally had the courage at around week 3.5 to open the crock and take a whiff. Now, I know sauerkraut smells kind of ripe, but this was downright stinky and spoiled smelling. Glynn was brave enough to try it-and immediately spit it out and pronounced it no good. We gave it all to the chickens who scarfed it down like it was manna from heaven. I don't know what went wrong. I followed the recipe exactly. I'd like to try it again, but not until I figure out the problem.

Sauerkraut Update:  Just as I was about to relegate this glass cookie jar to the basement I had an "A-HA" moment and realized that it would be a perfect sauerkraut crock. Cabbage went in on Aug. 12th with the salted brine, and a saltwater filled bag on top to keep the cabbage under the brine. It is sitting quietly on my counter, hopefully fermenting as it should. I haven't opened the lid to take a sniff- I don't know what it should smell like anyway- and there is no odor escaping. So, we'll see what happens!


I don't know if I will even like sauerkraut-the only kind I have ever had came out of a can. It's okay but nothing I would go out of my way to eat. But  my friend Jodi loves the artisian sauerkraut she buys at the health food store, and I need to know how to store cabbage. So I am going to try to make some. I have some beautiful heads of cabbage out in the garden, the best I have ever grown. I am going to try the mason jar method first, but I would love to find some nice crocks!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Books on order!

Two or three times a year I break down and place a multiple book order from Amazon.com. I hope they are not the Wal-mart of the book world, because I love their site and their service. Here's what should arrive in the mail next week! There are two more I am drooling over, I may succumb to tempation and order them too! The two foraging books maybe similar, and it's possible I may return one of them. We'll see. I have a fondness for donating books to my local library. Coming to a bookshelf near me soon:

The Complete Compost Gardening Guide: Banner batches, grow heaps, comforter compost, and other amazing techniques for saving time and money, and producing the most favorful, nutritious vegetables ever!  by Barbara Martin

The Forager's Harvest: A Guide to Identifying, Harvesting, and Preparing Edible Wild Plants by
Samuel Thayer

A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs: Of Eastern and Central North America (Peterson Field Guide) by  Steven Foster, et al

 Nature's Garden: A Guide to Identifying, Harvesting, and Preparing Edible Wild Plants by Steven Foster