Garden, Plant, Cook!

Sunday, March 18, 2018

This and That in Garden and Kitchen.

Dear Folks,

There is so much going on in the garden right now I thought I would give you pictures to inspire you and give you some ideas.

One of my big pots is filled with, L2R, Cilantro, Dill and Chervil. I need to harvest and dry most of these,  The cilantro is starting a flower stalk, so I need to act quickly :-)

The fragrance of the orange blossoms is filling the air all around the garden.  We can pretty much enjoy them anywhere.

On the opposite aroma spectrum is my garlic beds.  The Elephant Garlic is on the left and the regular garlic is on the right.  Hoping our cold weather of a couple of weeks ago is enough to force them in head growth later in April.

Back to fragrance, my wonderful Arizona Wild Rose has a delightful scent and pale pink blossoms.

Speaking of flowers, my Common Sorrel has flower stalks on it!!  First time.  I plan on capturing seed later on for sowing.  Regional adaptation is a "thing" and very important to growing healthier, stronger plants in your garden.  Sow, grow, save seeds.  Each successive generation is stronger and more regionally adapated.

Baby peaches on our tree.  Deane had to prune back severely this year to combat the die-off of some branches and the tree responded with a ton of growth and "some" peaches.  They still need to be thinned so we a few good size.

This little guy - the picture is deceiving -he is about 3 inches or so long - was running along the tie and I was able to get a shot of him beside the dead stalk of the Stevia.

Speaking of Stevia, this wonderful plant is putting out its new growth at the base as usual in the late winter/early spring.  This great "lady" has been going strong in my garden for something like 6-8 years - I have forgotten when I planted her.

One of the more colorful herbs in my garden is Spanish Thyme, aka Cuban Oregano, Indian Borage.  Plectranthus amboinicus variegated, is a relative of the house plant Creeping Charlie.  Edible, fragrant and gorgeous, one of my favorite unique herbs I have been growing for a couple of decades. At my old house the plant was in the ground long enough it flowered - a gorgeous bloom.  I am hoping this one which has been in the ground for about 4 or years will give me blooms soon.

My Black Mulberry Trees have flowers!!! I am hoping I have ones what will give me berries, can't wait!   When you purchase very young plants on line there is no way of knowing if you have fruiting varieties until . . .

My Johnny Jump-Ups are making their annual appearance in the lawn.  Because of the weird weather this year I don't know if we will get the incredible display as in prior years, but we love having this little and edible delicate beauties facing us as we walk around the gardens.

Kitchen "Doings"

I "corn" (brine) beef with spices and herbs of my choosing for St. Patrick's Day, which avoids nitrates.  I have been doing this for about 6 years now and we love the flavor.  I have to explain to friends who have not eaten it before - it is NOT red like commercial products because there are no nitrates and they LOVE the flavor.  For my recipe click here.  Pictured herbs and spices rubbed all over, ready for the sugar/salt brine to marinate for 2 weeks. Then into the crock pot on carrots, potatoes and onions and cook for 5-8 hours depending on the cut of meat you choose.  That is the other nice thing about doing your own "corning" - you get to choose the cut of beef you want.

Finally I made banana pudding with a going to be too ripe soon banana using a recipe I put together last year to use up OUR bananas from the Blue Java / Ice Cream plant we grow.  Not from our garden but so delicious and wholesome for dessert (which Deane enjoyed and I could not as I gave up desserts for Lent :-) But you know, I needed to know the banana would not go to waste and I did not want to making bread.

My Homemade Banana Pudding

2 cups milk
1/2 cup sugar (I use organic and you can use less if you like)
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon of butter
1 cup coarsely chopped banana

Shake cornstarch and 1/2 cup of the milk in a capped jar to mix well (no lumps to deal with).

Mash bananas slightly with about 1/4 cup of the milk. Leave some pieces in for texture.

Bring rest of milk, sugar, and salt to high simmer on the stove, stirring constantly.  Slowly add milk/cornstarch mixture, stirring constantly.  Add milk banana mixture and increase temperature, stirring regularly until the mixture thickens.  Remove from heat and add vanilla and butter, stir to mix in well and pour into pan or individual cups.  Cool and chill in refrigerator.

Don't forget the discount and free mail shipping offer My Publisher is giving - it expires tomorrow night March 19th.  A good opportunity to purchase my calendar, edible landscaping book or either of my cookbooks.  Click here for the information. 

 Have a wonderful day in the garden and kitchen.

-- Catherine, The Herb Lady

If you enjoyed this post, please share and subscribe below by entering your email, to get all my posts!

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner
Disclaimer: Clicking on links on this blog may earn me a small commission if you purchase something. Your price does not change.

No comments: