Dark Days: Back on the Horse

I had to skip last week’s dark days meal.  It served as a strong reminder of how hard it is to cook locally when you miss the farmer’s market that week.  Oddly enough, my pantry is very unlocally friendly.  However, I expect that to change once I get a bumper crop from the garden and can start preserving stuff.

This week I had a grand plan of building a meal around the gorgeous herbs I’m growing.  I thought Lamb would be delightful with my mint and rosemary.  One thing led to another, and the recipe we used ended up not using the lamb and rosemary.  Don’t worry my pretties, I will find something nice to feature you.

We had lamb riblets from TLC ranch in watsonville.  Served along side local greenbeans cooked in local olive oil and local lemon.  The spices and glaze we used on the ribs not local. (Cola based)  Also not local is the baked potato J.’s family gave us as leftover from Christmas dinner.  Regardless, after the week I had, we’re counting this meal!

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Holiday Fun!

I’ve been so behind on posting Max stuff. Here are some pics from the holidays and his birthday.   His birthday theme was “Who Said Moo?” — which was his favorite book for quite some time (“Where the Wild Things Are” is gaining momentum).  I loved his little suit.

Today Max got his first bloody nose.  It looked like he stumbled while drinking his milk and poked himself in the schnoz.  Poor little guy.  And btw, it’s impossible to get a one year old to tilt head back and chill for a bit.  At least, it is with my one year old.

On January 4th he starts in the older kids’ room.  It’s official. He’s not a baby anymore.  Sigh.

Garden Confession

I may have forgotten to mention that the basil died a brutal death.  We had a frost a few weeks back.  I had been bringing plants in the planters inside every night, but on that particular night, I decided to use this new fangled blanket type thing that’s supposed to protect.  Either it didn’t get the job done, or when J. got up in the morning and took it off it was still too cold and the plants looked like they were touched by frost.  Panic took over.  I decided I needed a stop gap measure till the sun warmed things up…and I pour a little warm (not hot) water on the plants.  The basil got cooked right then and there on the spot.  The other plants recovered.

I have a few egg cartons going with seeds for onion, spinach and sunflower.  Nothing has poked through yet, and the wait is killing me.

The latest project — I have a 5 foot square patch of weeds.  I decided to give sheet mulching a try.  I stomped on the weeds to make them flat.  Covered with one layer of compost (from the recycling plant), then a layer of cardboard (moving boxes), then another layer of compost (ran out — must go back to the plant), then wood chips (have to buy those, grrr.).  After 6 months, we should have prime soil for the summer growing season and hopefully no more weeds.

Dark Days #4 – Losing my mind & finding hope

First, I’m late on my dark days post, and will likely miss the posting deadline to make it in the recap.  All I can do is my best.

This week I made brussels sprouts for the first time.  That’s right. First time.  I’ve been afraid of the sprout, but I’ve conquered my fear.  This recipe was local leeks, sprouts and questionable (likely not local) bacon — which made the dish, so I don’t regret it.  I served it along side salmon from the farmer’s market which J. cooked up beautifully on the BBQ.

So, now that’s taken care of… some venting.  I’m uncharacteristically stressed out.  Couldn’t find my cell phone this morning.  Couldn’t make it out of my office till an hour later than I expected.  Couldn’t find my camera for 20 minutes prior to this post.  But, I did find a package in the mail with glorious heirloom seeds for the garden.  The rundown:

  • Cucumber
  • Chocolate sweet peppers
  • Tomatoes “mix”
  • Sunflower
  • Borage
  • Spinach
  • Autumn King Carrots

Do I know what I’m doing?  Hell no.  But let’s figure it out!  Any tips are welcomed!

Max with a Fever

So, Max had a fever of a 102 during this shot.  It was at his cousin Hal’s 1st birthday party — which he wouldn’t miss for the world.  I know it’s wrong to think he looks so cute when he’s sick. But there, I said it.

Being sick didn’t slow him down any.  His energy level was still through the roof.  He also managed to attempt to steal the birthday boy’s cake, hat and favorite toy.  Well, payback is a bitch because I expect Hal to be doing the same thing to Max in 2 weeks.

Dark Days Ducktastic Eggs

One of the foods I’ve been counting down to when Max gets to start eating is eggs!  It’s one of those things that is easy to always have around the house and cooks up in no time.  It can also be a great finger food.  My mom told me eggs were one of the first foods introduced when we were growing up, but the vogue now is to hold off until year 1 due to allergens.  So, here we are, almost at the one year mark and I couldn’t wait!  Max had a huge orange-yolked egg from the farmers market. Scrambled.

To celebrate, I also had something I’ve been jonesing for … duck egg toad in the hole!

I made it with local bread from Le Boulanger, a duck egg from the sunnyvale farmer’s market, local butter, and a garcreamy garlic cheese spread from the farmer’s market as well.  What I was most impressed about re: this meal is that I made it for breakfast on a crazy weekday morning.  I admit that I skip breakfast most days now.

I could so go for one right now, but we’re out of bread till tomorrow morning’s farmer’s market.  This dish may make an appearance when the inlaws come to visit tomorrow.