Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

French Breakfast Radishes

This morning's harvest was exciting. It marks the season of eating food we grow! We've been eating herbs like chives, oregano, tarragon, thyme and green onions but radishes, these radishes, we can really sink our teeth in.
French Breakfast Radishes are longer than the typical radishes you see in the grocery store. They are red with a white tip and have a milder, almost sweet flavor. They can be eaten cooked or raw. We prefer them raw. The greens can be blanched and eaten as well but none of us seem to like furry leaves so they will go to the compost bin.
Harvesting the radishes left an open spot in the garden so I planted more. This time a variety called Violet de Gournay. They should be ready in about 35 days.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Making Crafts

I am writing a feature for a local newspaper about inexpensive crafts for kids to make for Mother's Day. I had been experimenting with the ideas prior to picking up Francesca from school including tissue paper flowers and thumbprint flowers. When she jumped in the Jeep she immediately said, "Why is your thumb red?" I explained I had been testing crafts for my article. She wanted to make something too. When we got home she went straight to work. She made a lovely picture.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Climbing Trees

Francesca climbs trees. In fact, she climbs most things that can be carts, counter tops, cars and trucks, deck railings, her dad, desks and occasionally, the dinner table...filthy feet and all. I don't often mention this to our dinner guests and I do make a habit of washing the table often.

No Ordinary Meal

Asparagus-Leek Frittata

Spice-Broiled Tofu Fillets

Here at the Compound we tend not to prepare traditional meals like Turkey for Thanksgiving or Ham for Easter. For Easter this year the meal was mostly vegetarian with the exception of salmon for the three carnivores in attendance.

Spice-Broiled Tofu Fillets with Jade Pesto (to even call tofu a fillet is somehow funny to me)

Asparagus-Leek Frittata (the Pièce de résistance)

Mushroom Rockefellers (yes, a variation on a theme, Rockefeller would not have approved)

Baked Potatoes with Butter and Panko

Spice-Broiled Salmon

The tofu looked great but had a custardy texture I am not fond of. I will not make it again. If there was a way to make tofu crunchy I might like it. The frittata was delicious and never have I been so proud of the poof these eggs performed at 400 degrees. The Mushroom Rockefellers were good and I will make them again with a few minor adjustments. The potatoes were, like all potatoes, potatoes. Not much to like or dislike. The small amount of salmon left over made its way onto a salad that I packed in Clint's lunch. I expect it was well received.

Sleeping in Tents

For the last three nights Francesca and I have been sleeping in a tent. I want to kill a bit of grass to make way for a new perennial bed and putting up a tent seemed to be the most enjoyable way to do the weather has been so fantastic, who wouldn't want to sleep outside? We had rain the first night but we weathered the storm. We had rain, thunder and lightening the second night and found ourselves somewhat wet in the morning. The third night was perfect. The temperature never went below 69 degrees. The wind was perfect. Today I wash the linens as the whole campsite is starting to lose its freshness. I'll put it all back together this afternoon in anticipation of another night under a glossy moon and the sounds of Earth's beasts.
For some people in the world, this might be the only shelter they have right now. They might not have the ugly orange extension cord to light the reading lamp or the pretty paper lantern as we do. They might not have an indoor bathroom a few steps away as we do. They might not have a glass of wine while they read Maurice Sendak's Little Bear to their children. And they probably aren't trying to decide between duvet covers while their linens are on the spin cycle.
There is something to be said about sleeping outside.