We had a gathering here on the 4th of July for family & friends. I made asian cucumbers with the cukes I was gifted last weekend. To save a 30 min. trip to town for organic fruit, we decided to make homemade ice cream using almonds & the remainder of our hazelnuts, which I toasted. It was delicious! I gathered flowers for 2 bouquets from the garden, & picked the first 3 cherry tomatoes, & used them as part of a pasta salad. J found a 10# bag of rice on markdown at the local grocery, & I dry canned it in jars. We did some research, and J found special lids that go over canning lids that you can vacuum seal with, instead of oven canning them as in the past. We were hoping to be able to seal foods without subjecting them to heat. Though we didn't manage to get the jars to seal using our vacuum cleaner as promised in a youtube video (we don't have a vacuum sealer), J got his vacuum pump from the shop, which worked wonderfully. I'll be happy to not have the added expense of gas for the oven as well as the heat, at least with summertime dry canning. The sealing went very quickly, which is also a bonus.
I had found some olives that we loved last year at Big Lots, and was delighted to find them again last week. I bought all the jars I found at $2 ea. I mentioned in a post a while back that I was given the OK to pass along any of my friends antiques that didn't sell on ebay after a time. Last week I gifted my second box of antiques, to a lovely local woman who unexpectedly lost her husband last year (in his 50's). She has a consignment shop with all sorts of vintage goodness. I hope these items will sell well for her. Various spots were weeded, including the carrot bed, around blueberries and a flower bed. I trained cucumbers up the trellis, as well as some beans. Squash bugs have arrived. J & I squish them whenever we find them on the cucumbers or squash. We enjoyed steamed chard from the garden. One of our cabbage heads had split, so I harvested it & made asian slaw.
|unwrapped soap shortly after "the incident"
|Love the coloring on this April born chick
I've been looking for new recipes for swiss chard, & tried making a wrap using a large leaf. I made hummus & put that in first, then added carrots, grape tomatoes, black olives, cucumbers & feta before rolling it up. I thought it was pretty good, but J didn't care for it. He admits to not being much of a wrap kind of guy though. I made pizza dough with mostly home ground wheat, our garlic & oregano, & peppers gifted to us, in addition to a few store bought items. J picked our first cucumber for the salad. For many years, I'd wondered why my hands & arms turn black when working with tomato plants. I finally thought to look it up, & found out it's due to tomato tar. Who knew? It seems as though it must vary some, & I wonder if it might be due to a person's chemistry. Lemon juice helps a little, but not much. I read of vinegar and tried that, but it didn't do anything on me. Does it affect you? Do you have any tricks to remove it? J worked up the soil where we harvested potatoes, & planted the first of the fall garden. We planted collards too late last year to have a good crop, & want to be sure that doesn't happen again. Have you begun planning your fall garden yet? I'm joining in with the inspiring Frugal Accomplishments community today.