RSS Feed

Category Archives: Food

Just Another Soggy Day in the ‘Hood

Posted on

The Fourth was a real bust around our house. I just couldn’t get into it, after spending Friday trying to salvage much of my waterlogged garden. The weather data around here showed June giving us 9.6″ of rain. Seventeen days in June it rained.

field day 2015 050

And we already slogged through last weekend at our Field Day site. Somehow I wasn’t inclined to make it two Saturdays in a row, so we stayed home and I cooked. I really had to do something with these.

garden and eggs 004

That would be the 75 onions I harvested on Friday. I had to do it. They were starting to crack, and to get softer at the crown.

garden and eggs 008

This pile couldn’t be hung to cure. They have various bruises and cracks but are a decent size. So, they became crock pot caramelized onions.

garden and eggs 017

All of them into the pot, for 16 hours, the last two uncovered. I ended up with about 32 ounces of onions. Four one cup containers. Three in the freezer to use this winter. Making them is simple. Salt, pepper, a splash of water.

I can definitely sympathize with our local farmers. This weather is seriously affecting crops. We got newsletters from both Friends and Farms, and our Lancaster Farm Fresh CSA, telling us to hang in there. The fruit and vegetables aren’t as good when the temperatures won’t rise enough to ripen them, and when excess rain waters them down, or splits them.

Still, I can be thankful my garden is producing.

garden and fandf eat local 002

Ready for the Fourth?

Posted on

garden and fandf eat local 057

The locavore way. Berries from Larriland. Chardonnay from Big Cork. Using Maryland’s best to celebrate the holiday.

I am getting ready for this weekend. Lots of good stuff from the garden, the CSA, Friends and Farms and other local farms for grilling, chilling and just kicking back. If only the weather would cooperate.

As for things to do, here is what is high on our list.


You could go pick berries at Larriland, as they are open 9-1 on Saturday. Have a hot dog at Alex’s snowball stand. Watch the parade. Listen to the music.

For us, we are seriously considering heading out to Rohrersville to Big Cork to join in their celebration at the winery. The events page has the details. I mean, River House Pizza from Eillicott City is heading out there.

As for the grilling sometime this weekend, if it ever stops raining, I am looking forward to those goodies from my Friends and Farms basket.

garden and fandf eat local 044

I am thinking bratwurst with German mustard.

As for fireworks, not a fan. I know they are all around the area, but we just stay out here in west county and watch the neighbors’ fireworks. Someone, somewhere out here will set off a few.

Happy Independence Day to Howard County.

Zukes and Cukes

Posted on

A #grow100 update.


The major section of my designated #grow100 one hundred square foot gardening area. Covered in zucchini and cucumber plants. With shallots, leeks and onions farther down the row.

I harvested my first green cucumber this weekend. Plus, three more mini whites.

larriland and garden 041

There were also three more large zucchini out there this weekend.

And the onions. Wow, do we have onions. Want to grow something very easy. Put in onions.

larriland and garden 044

Most of these came from my grow 100 area. Reds. Whites. Goldens. The rain has been pretty relentless and I have to harvest those which exhibit signs of too much rain. Their tops droop over. If you try to pull them out, they break. These will not be candidates for curing. They will be eaten fresh. Many ways to make those onions. I made Ina Garten’s herb roasted onions for dinner.

larriland and garden 049

Only I jazzed them up with zucchini and garlic scapes. A simple vinaigrette made with honey mustard, olive oil, thyme, dill, salt, pepper and lemon juice. Baked until soft.

Head over to Grow It, Eat It to see how easy it is to start a garden.

Cherry Picking

Posted on

Out at Larriland.

larriland and garden 005

I got there Friday morning to pick sweet cherries. It certainly was busy.

larriland and garden 004

The parking area was full. Most people, though, were picking strawberries so the cherry trees were relatively quiet. I know it was the last day of school around here, but there were quite a few families out there.

larriland and garden 001

Cherries were $3.99 a pound. I picked four pounds. Knowing I was going to make jam, I wasn’t that careful about keeping the stems on the cherries.

larriland and garden 008

I came home, cleaned and pitted them. Prepared my canning stuff. Found a recipe I liked. And made five jars of cherry “jam”, which is actually more like a syrup.

larriland and garden 017

The recipe was a low sugar, no pectin, three ingredient one. Cherries. Sugar. Lemon juice. Not too hard to do.

larriland and garden 028

We are so lucky to have a pick your own farm right up the road. Larriland is a treasure in our county.


Posted on

Or lack thereof due to the high concentration of garlic in the house.

garlic and ribs 007

After all, how many people do you know that are curing garlic in their laundry rooms? The garlic hanging there is destined for the Howard County Food Bank. The first of many harvests to give us about a month’s worth of garlic to donate. I took about a dozen heads of garlic out of the ground this week. The largest ones, which were already turning brown on their tops. The rest. Will get harvested as they dry out. If it ever stops raining. Garlic is easy to grow, but needs to be dried somewhere cool and dry.

Besides that garlic, I have scapes from the CSA and green garlic also. Green garlic are those immature plants that are culled out to make room for the more robust plants that will become mature garlic.

csa june9 007

In this picture you can see green garlic on the right and scapes all curled up on the left. I made some pesto. Cut some in pieces to use in stir fry dinners. I should have left a few of them whole so I could wrap bacon around them and grill them. Too late for this batch.

If you have never had scapes, I know that Love Dove Farms sells them at the various county markets. I used to buy mine there before the CSA started inundating us with scapes.

Tonight a few ended up in this meal.

fandf june 18 and garden 016

An almost completely locally sourced meal. The salad. Arugula and butter lettuce and chive blossoms from my garden. The main dish. Pappardelle’s garlic chive pasta from Secolari, served with shrimp from Friends and Farms. Pesto from my freezer (last year’s basil). Snow peas, scallions and scapes from the CSA.

With all this garlic, there will be no vampires in this part of western HoCo.

Tidbit Tuesday Again

Posted on

Just some random thoughts on a Tuesday evening.

csa june16 garden and cooking 037

The zucchini are officially out of control already, less than a week after finding the first few. The behemoth in the picture weighed 24 ounces and was hiding (the usual ploy of zucchini not wanting to be harvested). All told. 84 ounces in 8 zucchini. And, this is just the beginning.

Notice the two little mini white cucumbers. My first cukes of the season. Pickling cukes. They are far ahead of the other cucumbers. All of these vegetables came from my #grow100 challenge area. What can you grow in 100 square feet? Obviously, beaucoup zucchini.

Moving on to other pictures from my camera since the weekend, congratulations to the volunteer of the year at the conservancy, Woody Merkle. We swear he lives there, we see him all the time.

csa june16 garden and cooking 021

We had our volunteer appreciation strawberry social on Sunday. Well attended. Lovely berries from Baugher’s and ice cream from Hoffman’s.

csa june16 garden and cooking 018

Today after harvesting for the food bank and for the winners of the auction basket at Wine in the Garden, I got those zucchini and cukes and headed off for my CSA pick up.

csa june16 garden and cooking 044

Something new. Red Leaf cheese. Not just any cheese, but an award winning goat cheese with attitude. The joys of our CSA. Finding things like this.

This week we also got something new in our meat share.

csa june16 garden and cooking 062

Country spare ribs from the heritage hogs at Razorbacks and Barbed Wire Farm. We have gotten pork chops from this farm. Very tasty. I am thinking ribs tomorrow night.

As for the fruit share.

csa june16 garden and cooking 058

Stayman apples and strawberry jam. I just finished the raspberry jam from the winter CSA. Am so happy to see a new flavor to try. Heaven on toast in the morning.

My veggie share?

csa june16 garden and cooking 046

Completely insane. Almost too much to photograph. There will be lots of cooking going on. I am thinking of using the massive escarole in a soup with the last of the green garlic. Romano beans and snow peas.

OK, another new one.

csa june16 garden and cooking 047

Dandelion greens.

We are slowly transitioning into summer, with a mix of squash and beans, and many different greens.

Lovin’ Summertime

Posted on

Summer has arrived. Really arrived. Hot, humid, perfect weather for the garden to flourish.

fandf june 11 008

The first zucchini. Out of that 100 square ft area in my garden. I like to pick the earliest ones when they are small, and do a simple dish with them. The massive zucchini will come later when I find them hiding under the leaves.

We got some really good stuff in our Friends and Farms basket Thursday. Atlantic Bluefin and ground lamb are the stars.

fandf june 11 001

We did the tuna Thursday, and made mega meatballs tonight from one of the packages of lamb.

fandf june 11 018

I do a “no measure” meatball. Putting in bread crumbs, an egg, za’atar and cumin, salt and pepper, a few scallions. Baking at 350 degrees until perfectly browned.

fandf june 11 020

A few meatballs. Sautéed zucchini. New potatoes from up at Jenny’s market.

Followed by one really great dessert. Strawberry rhubarb dessert bars.

fandf june 11 007

Not too bad for a hot humid Saturday. Here’s to more meals from local foods. Here’s to celebrating summertime.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 519 other followers