Local Tastes Better

Hop on over to my latest blog,
I've been cooking it up like crazy.  Read about my local + seasonal + sustainable dinner parties, and all about the chicken. 


Making Cheese

A simple act can yield great results.

Start with a lovely, fresh and high quality Greek yogurt.
Layer cheesecloth a few time, and drape it over a mason jar. 
Scoop the Greek yogurt into the cheesecloth, and screw on the lid, keeping the yogurt suspended in the jar. In the fridge, let it drain out for about 24 hours.  What you end up with is a creamy, tangy, homemade cheese!

A few of my favorite things....

Grilled multi-grain bread, with homemade Greek yogurt cheese, white balsamic pickled strawberries, basil, and local honey.


Grill 'em

It's nothing new, but always exciting....
Grill your fruit!
It will bring out the sugars and a complex, rich and deep caramelized flavor.  The texture can become very unctuous and looks beautiful.
These strawberries were grilled with a balsamic glaze.  I put them over a vanilla bean ice cream for a bright and lovely treat.  

*If grilling smaller fruit like strawberries, put them on a skewer to keep them from falling through the grill.


Goji Berries!

I'm not a huge fan of the Home Depot garden section, but lately they have been impressing me.  This spring they offered more heirloom varieties of tomatoes, and I ran across this GOJI BERRY bush there too!  I haven't seen this plant offered at any local nursery,  arboretum, college plant sale, or even in my seed catalogs.  

This photo was from the first week it went into my garden, and it has really started to grow now.  It needs full sun, and should fruit July through October.

Here she comes....

Homegrown broccoli couldn't be easier. 
It's been an exciting addition to my spring garden, and I can't wait to try a few new heirloom varieties next year.  Purple broccoli? Sign me up!

Types of Broccoli

Large-headed varieties produce the familiar domed heads that are composed of numerous clustered florets. Many large-headed varieties produce smaller side shoots after the primary head is harvested.

Sprouting varieties grow into bushier plants that produce numerous small heads. These varieties are at their best when grown from fall to spring in mild winter climates.

Romanesco varieties produce elegantly swirled heads composed of symmetrically pointed spirals. These large plants need plenty of space, excellent soil and good growing conditions to do well.

Broccoli raab is grown for its immature flower buds, which have a stronger flavor than regular broccoli. Broccoli raab (closely related to turnips) is popular in Asian and Italian cooking.


They are so pretty!

Colorful carrots can brighten up any plate.  I love them with lemon and cumin, or ginger and orange juice. 



It's nice when all of my hoarding of what seems to be useless facts, comes into use.
Broken lightbulb + potato = easy removal.  
Oh snap, that just happened!