Sunday, May 08, 2011

Peas and Fava Beans; Yummy

The recipe I'm using for dinner tonight comes from Jamie Oliver who's dressed like a snap pea in this photo. He's talking to some bureaucrat at an elementary school back East. I'm cooking one of Jamie's recipes tonight that is mostly snap peas and fava beans. You don't cook any of it. Fava beans are those big hunky things that look weird. You see them at farmer's markets this time of year.

When my sister Vicky reads this she will wrinkle her nose and say, "ish." She hates peas in any shape and form. But I bet I could get her to eat this.

Jamie cooked this recipe on his TV show last week. The recipe is in his cookbook, "Jamie at Home."

Pretty simple recipe: fava beans, snap peas, pecorino cheese, juice of one lemon, a few leaves of fresh mint, salt, and olive oil. Mash everything up in a food processor (Jamie used a mortar and pestle). Serve on toasted sourdough bread that has been rubbed with a raw garlic clove while the bread is still warm.

Then break apart a ball of fresh mozzarella and place over the green mixture. Pile on a few bits of lettuce, a dash of olive oil and some lemon juice. And dinner is ready.

So far I've made the green mixture. It's resting in the refrigerator until dinner tonight.
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Friday, April 15, 2011

My Blog Has Moved

This is the only way I could make the photos stick. Hope you will visit the new place. Here's the new link:

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Saturday Photos

I haven't felt like writing much lately so I thought I would post a couple of pictures from yesterday. The quilt is only one small corner of a king size quilt that is beautifully appliqued. I couldn't get back far enough to get the whole thing. It is an amazing piece of art at the quilt show in Auburn, CA. The other photo is the wisteria blooming on our front deck. Liberal doses of my compost tea have done wonders for it. Hope you can click on both photos to see more detail.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Planning My Garden

Gardening has been on my mind during all the cold and wet weather we've been having. It's not time to get out there and work the raised beds, but I have enjoyed thinking about it. At the same time I've been watching a Jamie Oliver show on the Cooking Channel: Jamie at Home. My son and daughter-in-law gave me the cookbook of the same name. He begins each show with a stop in his garden to pick up things he wants to cook. Invariably there are lots of herbs in his garden basket. I would love to have lots of fresh herbs to use in my cooking this summer. Many of them make it through our winters; those that can't will be dried. Even though we live on five acres, we have not set aside much room for gardening. The soil here is clay; perfect for growing rice. I have two raised beds where the soil is much better. This year I'm going to plant tomatoes and herbs. Last year I had four tomato plants which really wasn't enough so I'm probably going for six this year. I had better luck last year with the smaller tomatoes like cherry and Roma. Still I'll probably plant at least one big guy. I found a vendor at the farmer's market yesterday who has just about every herb I want in my garden. Herbs can be raised in pots too so they are easy to tuck away on decks or porches. I love the vendor's farm name "Melon Jolly Organic Farm." They are leasing a farm from a family that can no longer farm their land due to health reasons. With that lease came lots and lots of seeds from earlier years. She's been propagating them. Both of them used to work for my CSA, Natural Trading Company. They finally have their own farm. But before I can do anything, I need to weed. The rain and this week's promised heat (80 degrees on Thursday) will probably make them grow even more. Right now our cats can wander through the weeds unseen.

Monday, February 21, 2011

"C" Puppies Visit

There 12 pure bred golden labs who are 8 weeks old. Lia, pictured here holding my personal favorite, is the puppy raiser. She was my personal favorite because she was the quietest of them all. The dam is Darlan. She and Lia live in Reno. Each time Lia turns in a litter to Canine Companions for Independence in Santa Rosa, CA, she stops by for an overnight visit. This is Darlan's first really large litter. They are so adorable.

They slept in the hallway in a fenced in area with lots of plastic and other layers to protect the floor. The big dog in one of the photos is Harleen. Once upon a time she was an 8-week-old puppy just like these guys. She wasn't quite sure what to make of them. But whenever she moved around the outside of the pen the puppies followed her. The color of their dog collars signifies birth order. CCI is doing a study to see if that has any bearing on future performance. Harleen was fifth born; her color was hot pink.

By now they are at the CCI vet being weighed, vaccinated and tattooed with a number (in their ear). Tomorrow they travel to their puppy raisers who are as far away as New Jersey and as close as Northern California. In a couple of weeks they will start training with hopes of someday becoming a service dog for a disabled person (but not blind, that organization raises their own dogs).

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Thursday, February 17, 2011

A Long Last, Bacon Will Be Back In Our Diet

We belong to a wonderful meat club which allows us to buy beef, pork, lamb, chicken, eggs and even water buffalo from local ranches. What's been missing for nearly a year is bacon. We love bacon. I've bought some at Whole Foods for a while but just didn't feel right about it not be sourced locally.

I finally put the word out on Twitter. Within a matter of hours I was connected with The Foragers who supply bacon as well as a 1/4, 1/2 or whole hog and lots of other meats. I just ordered 3 packages from Tyler who is the Chief Forager. Great title. I can't pick it up until March 12 in Sacramento. That gives me time to decide how I'm going to use it.

Twitter has helped so much in our quest to eat sustainable, organic, local and ethical (SOLE) foods. The web site for our meat club is

The web site for The Foragers is

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