Sunday, October 31, 2010

halloween dinner: pumpkin maple whoopie pies!

 our halloween dinner consisted of the fall-classic roasted root vegetables covered with fresh herbs,  butternut squash with sage and cranberries, dhal, and some amazing, original pumpkin whoopie pies with maple cream frosting.  in fact i made two maple frostings, one with butter, one with shortening.  very proud of these folks. 

want the recipe for these bad boys?


2 2/3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup butter (1 stick), room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup  plain yogurt
1 cup canned pumpkin 

mix the shuga and butter up nicely. add all the other wet ingredients, mix more. then add the dry ones. now mix your heart out. 
 cook 'em for 10 minutes at 350. do not over cook. let cool on cooling rack.

while the pie's are cookin', make the whoop. 
1 c confectioners sugar
4 or 5 tbs of maple syrup (to taste)
1 stick of butter or the equivalent with shortening. shortening will give a more whipped flavor, butter will make it more creamy and drizzly.

happy halloween

this being kid A's first year walking, we'll be taking him around town, trick or treating (minus the treats). he was going to be a drunken sailor, but i was recently inspired by some fabric, and now he's going to be an awesome merlin-esque wizard.  we've got into the decorative mood over a month ago, and the li'l dude has been going around trying to scare people with a loud "BOO!" followed by an evil laugh ("mwa ha ha ha!!"). actually, we have been, too.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

OT: creativity in schools

just love this. bet you will too. 

Ken Robinson says schools kill creativity | Video on

we've returned to the TED talks as of late. i gotta say, these are much better than movie watching.

Monday, October 25, 2010

tomato sauce makin'

el squeezo

disclaimer: segregation is wrong

mariana toms + 1 sly apple


can those suckers


Friday, October 22, 2010

fall on the farm

just because it's autumn doesn't mean our farm activities have decreased. to name a few... we've still got lots of dry beans to harvest, 

and the fall squashes to eat,  
 as well as our list of fall crops, which once included many leafy greens. until recently, when we were thwarted by this guy.  he ate all our fall kale, chard and cabbage.

also there's wood procurin', choppin' (props to conroy) and stackin'.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

edible weeds

stinging nettle in bloom

thought i might mention the plethora of growth in and around our garden that we didn't intend, but can still eat. it's always good to know that we're surrounded by exceptionally nutritious greens, even though we shun them more often than not. so here it is, folks. an incomplete list of some edible weeds.
-burdock root. put it in stir fry or add it to salad, either way, it's not bad. 
-dandelion. the flowers can be made into wine or jelly. the roots make a bitter tea and purportedly detoxify your liver. the young leaves aren't bad in salads.
-lamb's quarters. the (young) leaves are good in a salad.
-chicory. flowers and roots are worth a try.
-goldenrod. the flowers and leaves can be used for tea. 
-shepherd's purse. peppery.
-milk thistle. the leaves are comparable to spinach. and it regenerates the cells of your liver.
-plantain. edible and good for combating bug bites. 
-stinging nettle. careful with this one. cook those leaves like you would spinach. helps with arthritis and kidney problems.
-purslane. again, salads. and has omega-3 fatty acids. who knew?
-red clover. the flowers make a fantastic tea. it'll blow your mind. it's better and cheaper than kombucha.

Monday, October 4, 2010

cabbage looper control

these loopers are attacking our fall kale and chard in a frenzy of brassica hate.  this is completely unacceptable behavior from uninvited garden pestsbut i gotta admit, i think it might be partly my fault.  these past days and nights have been quite chilly and so we've left the fall crops snug underneath reemay to keep them warm, or so we thought. but, alas, little did we know our veggies had strange bedfellows. in fact, they were being devoured by the likes of these brutes, without abandon. 

smug looking little guy
 and that's not the worst of it.  low and behold, little looper here not only ate much of our leafy greens, he pooped on them.  
graphic, huh?

Friday, October 1, 2010

full of beans

gosh i love rainy days. and we're having a string of them these days. we're getting the remnants of tropical storm 'nicole' today.

the rain's good for the new fall crops, less good for our remaining black beans.  they were beginning to mold so conroy just finished harvesting them, and storing them.  
in fact our garage is currently full of beans.

ok, it might not look like much, but you're not shuckin' 'em. it's plenty. we've got black beans, pinto, soldier beans, great northern and squashes living in our garage right now, all in need of some attention.  that's our weekend - we're on bean duty.