Sunday, October 9, 2011

Gardening in 2011

I had an experimental garden this year. 
I planted my squash and green peppers from nursery starts on
July 9th. 
The strawberry starts, onions, radishes, spinach, carrots and lettuce went in on the 19th of July. (The 19th is my very special friends birthday! Happy Birthday WLS!!)

The following photos were taken on 7-25-11:

Baby strawberry plant taking root.

A squash in an old ice cream maker bucket.
This guy didn't do too well, he didn't get sufficient water.

Here is our new front yard Cranapple Tree.  
Ryan pretty well picked out all these flowers and we planted them together.
It was fun and I believe they are really pretty.

Here is our new east side forest. Ryan's Long Needle Pine.
A plumb, a peach, a 2nd cran-apple and a golden willow.
Will they get in the ground? not sure....

Here is squash buckets on my new rain gutter system.
In the front is the strawberry starts and onions,
both bulb and starts from mom & dad's green onions.

Green pepper buckets. Behind you see the black planter that was
from our new cran-apple tree. I planted potatoes in there and
we need to see if any grew- soon, I need to check this out soon!

Here are more squash buckets. In the front planter- top left is spinach,
barely growing here. Then are the radishes. Then the sparse place
in the middle has mini carrots, just starting out. The next green patch is leaf
lettuce and the dirt at the bottom right has more onion bulbs.
The 'rain-gutter' garden was planted on July 9th. 
The tomatoes went in well before May- in wall-of-waters.


The tomatoes (in front below the porch), the toms have done great this year, only they don't have any special taste to them. Not that wonderful home grown taste that we all love. But Ryan who doesn't like store bought tomatoes has really enjoyed these. He really loves tomato sandwiches. Go figure..........

The cherry tomatoes are sweet and delish. The more Roma style are not
flavorful. But have been great to cook with and make sandwiches out of.

Green tomatoes are great for dicing and adding to scrambled eggs, stewed vegies, soups, stews, casseroles, well just anywhere you can use veggies. I use green ones all the time- I love them!

These guys are just happy on the vine.

Can't wait for tacos, sandwiches or just slice and eat!

Carrots picked 9-24-11 - two month worth of growing.
Right during the hottest days of the summer!

Yep. That's a penny and those carrots are tiny, but cute and they taste fine!

The following photos were taken on 8-28-11:

The full view of my 4 - 5foot gutter planters/systems.

This photo loaded upside down. Don't know why, I've tried everything
I can think of without doing research. So we'll just look at it as it for now.
Just showing squash blossoms and the carrot tops on the top left, radish tops on the top right.

How about these nice green peppers?!! They have sure tasted great.

Onions planted from bulblets and the shorter ones in
the middle are bushing/wild onions from my mom & dad. They might have been
brought from the Holladay property.

A yellow summer squash. He was yummy.

The one strawberry transplant is doing well.

I'm leaving this guy for seed? Well it is my excuse. I wanted to see him get
really big and see how the plant would handle him hanging. But maybe this variety doesn't grow big?

I am sure this photo has my potato plant in it's pot amongst the tomatoes.
But I'm not going to search it out tonight.
(spell check says that amongst is not a word, but I'm using it anyway!)

It is October 8th today and the plants are going strong.  I hope we have several more weeks, but we will just wait and see. The carrots still need some grow time. The kids keep pulling them and eating them, but all they are getting is a tiny pea size bulb! it is so funny. But they do taste like carrots!! There are a couple that are getting to be the size of a small radish now. I hope they stay there and keep growing.


Friday, September 2, 2011

Fresh Garden Tomatoes in a Sandwich

You take these and slice them. Put them on a slice of bread with
some mustard/mayo or plain mayo, top it off and you get......................

This wonderful sandwich!! Yum..... Yum....

Just tomato, mayo and bread. Can't beat that. And Ryan even like it!!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Spring 2011 - May 25th Ride up to Tibble - American Fork Canyon

We took a ride up to Tibble Fork Reservoir, American Fork Canyon just before Ryan was to leave to work in Moab at Entrada- Scout Camp for a month.

The lake is completely full. I don't believe I have ever seen it this high before.

My favorite fishing pole is still on the bottom of this lake! Argh...........

This is where Ryan & I usually launch our float tubes. The tree is usually out of the
water and the rock barely showing is always fully out of the water.
There is usually a little shallow bay with plenty of big rocks to
help you get in your tube and get your gear organized.

The Spillway entrance is  overflowing. No more water can be held by this dam.

This white water waterfall is usually just a trickle.
But with so much snow this year, it is tumbling happily down the mountain.

We had a nice ride, but I am sorry to say I am not excited to come fishing because the water is too high and it makes my nerves crazy!! Crazy I know, but true.

The other reason we took this drive was to see when the campgrounds for TERT were going to be opened. Not for several more weeks and maybe not in June at all. We will have to wait and see.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Baked Tacos

So it was time for tacos again. This time I wanted to do something a bit different. Main ingredients: taco meat, hard shells, flour tortillas, beans and toppings.

I took hard shells and put them in a baking dish. I used foil to make a holder for them that allowed them to stand up. I  just folded grooves into the foil.

 Then I filled them with my cooked meat mixture. Added a sprinkling of cheese and stuck them in the oven for a few minutes to allow the shells to crisp and brown slightly, and the cheese to begin to melt.
See how they are crispy, the cheese is melty and the shells are standing up? This worked out great.

After I removed the tacos from the oven, I took a warm flour tortilla and spread a thin layer of refried beans on it and then wrapped it around the crisp taco. Yum! It was fun, good, looked good too. They tasted great. Easy-Peasy way to shake up a normal meal.
We rounded up the meal with corn, black olives, a spoon of refried beans and Mexican rice. Toppings were chosen from diced tomato, shredded lettuce, additional cheese and sour cream. Yum!


Sunday, January 16, 2011

Blueberry Muffins

Blueberry Muffins

Favorite Sweet Muffins

1/2 cup milk
2 Tbs water
1/4 cup applesauce (or oil)
1 1/2 cup flour
1 Tbs dry egg powder (whole egg or whites only)
1/2 cup sugar (or Splenda)
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
Optional: 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
     (When using frozen blueberries, I add them to the dry mix and coat them well. Then I stir in the wet until just moistened. In order to keep from turning the whole batter blue, I do not thaw the blueberries. I quickly coat them and finish the batter. Then drop the batter into the pan. If the batter sits before panning, the blueberries will bleed as you scoop them into the pan- or at least this is what happens to me!)

bake at 400 degrees F for 20-25 minutes.

  1. Measure and mix all dry ingredients, until well incorporated.
  2. stir milk, water and applesauce into dry ingredients.
  3. mix until flour is just moistened.
  4. Batter will be lumpy!
  5. fill muffin cups 2/3rds full- grease cups if not using paper liners.
  6. bake in middle of oven.
  7. immediately remove from pan after baking.

(The regular recipe calls for 1 egg and 1/2 cup oil. If using fresh egg, just omit egg powder and the 2 Tbs water. Exchange the applesauce and the oil using the same measured amount.)

I found a Kitchenaid silicone muffin pan at the Thrift shop for $1.50- I love it!!! Got to love those bargains. 

Someday I will experiment with fresh & freeze dried blueberries too. My guess is that fresh berries will fold into the batter very well without bluing it up too much. I will mix them with the dry ingredients first and proceed as stated above for frozen. However, I will cull the injured ones out- unless that is a lot. Hopefully I will get a good batch of berries with perfect skins and no cuts or nicks. 

My freeze dried blueberries instructions say to reconstitute by soaking in water before using. I don't know how this will work. If the berries are whole and undamaged, they might reconstitute and hold the moisture without bleeding out into the batter. Or maybe I mix them in dry, add a little more moisture to the batter and let them reconstitute in the pan as they sit to bake and bake.  Will be fun experimenting!!

Blue blueberry muffins look weird to me, but they taste fine. So nothing is lost with trying out different methods and products.