Sunday, April 29, 2018

Late April in the Garden & Frugal Accomplishments

Hello, friends.  Last week, swagbucks points were redeemed for a $25 amazon gift card, and purchases were made through ebates for $1 cash back, and swagbucks for $5.78.  I was asked to shop sit three days at a gallery where my soaps are carried.  I'm happy to add a new job to my repertoire, as I stopped filling in at one of my jobs the first of the year.   The job I let go of was fairly physical demanding; shop sitting will serve me much better as I age into my sixties.  We're getting some nice rain, helping to settle in the new plants, and the seeds to sprout.  I noticed beet seeds sprouting on Monday, and carrots later in the week.  We found spinach seeds up on Sunday. 

Seeds were saved from Meyer lemons.   I set them aside when I made a cake, froze most for pectin and kept the biggest ones to try and sprout.  I did this with regular lemons a couple of years ago, with good results.  They were in a bowl on my counter for a couple of days before I got around to reminding myself how to prepare them.  Well, all the instructions said not to let them dry out.  Oops!  I decided to try the ones in the bowl, and a few that I'd frozen, figuring it was worth 5 or 10 minutes of my time.  I'm hoping for the best, though know that the likelihood is slim.  If none sprout, I'll buy another one the next time I see them, and not let the seeds dry out next time.

Most every day, I stop by the roses and pick off and stomp tent caterpillars.  J has been removing them from the apple trees on a regular basis as well.  I finished one library book, then requested and started Coming Home by Rosamunde Pilcher, which I'm enjoying.  I walked with the pups for exercise.  An omelet was made using just picked dandelion, violet and nettle leaves.  The usual composting, saving vegi bits for broth, shredding paper and washing plastic bags for reuse was done.  Yogurt, hummingbird food and bird suet were made.  In the suet, I used the leftover skins and seeds from canning tomatoes and berries last year, which were dehydrated for this use.

Clumps of thrift and homestead verbena were transplanted.  I made cream of asparagus soup with a mixture of our asparagus and some that were gifted to me.  I haven't had enough asparagus to make this the past couple of years, and was delighted to be able to make it now.  I planted another flat of seeds, mostly flowers this time, and planted seeds of several different marigolds and sunflowers in the ground, and zinnias and nasturtiums in pots.  Another day, I planted several herb and flower seeds.  Half a dozen eggs were boiled for us and the pups.  I heated a pan of summer squash casserole I'd previously frozen.  Tomato rice loaf was made, which used our garlic, homemade bread crumbs and a few of our cherry tomatoes I'd frozen.  A vegi version of my grandmother's stuffing was made, which used our parsley and sage.

Knowing I'd be working the next 3 days, and getting home around 6, then needing to do evening homestead chores, I did more than the usual cooking Wednesday afternoon.  First, I made butternut squash crumble, which has a note I wrote on the recipe "time consuming but good"; then came spanakopita, and working with phyllo dough for the first time ever, using several bags of frozen lambs quarter in place of spinach.  J requested some of our lima beans to round out the meal, so they were prepared.  There were phyllo sheets left, so I found a recipe for apple strudel, using apple pie filling, and used a jar I'd canned.  That still didn't use up all of the roll of phyllo dough.  My tendency was to compost it, being it would be days before I had any serious cooking time again, but J wrapped and put it in the freezer.  If you've got suggestions or recipes for using phyllo dough, please share.  J hilled up the potatoes while I was at work yesterday, and planted sweet potato slips and spaghetti squash.  Today, he planted cucumber and summer squash seeds.  We've had lovely spring weather the past few days.  I saw a forecast of 86 for later in the week.  Please say it isn't so.   Wishing you a lovely week as we ease on into May.


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cookingwithgas said...

Oh look spam! Yes, spring is wonderful but has had such a hard time getting here.
Lovely flowers.

Laurie said...

Does anyone actually follow one of those spam links left in a comment?! Gotta wonder why they waste their time. I hope we'll get lots more spring, before it jumps into summer weather.

cookingwithgas said...

It's as bad as finding ants in the kitchen- I don't follow them, but there they are.
Glad we got them.

Michèle Hastings said...

Spanakopita, yum! I only made it once and like you, wasn't sure what to do with the leftover phyllo. I froze it and promptly forgot about it for a year! I guess I am not much help.