When my neighbor went to Turkey a few years ago, she was fortunate to spend time with a Turkish family, and taste true Turkish cuisine prepared at home. She also had a grand time at the Istanbul Bazaar and came back with amazingly fragrant spices, […]
Quacking from Rappahannock (our blog)
I am not a professional forager, but I do harvest wild plants for eating. The easy ones are summer berries, autumn berries, and pawpaws; the more glamorous ones, morels & chanterelles (although to be truthful, my husband does most of the mushroom hunting); the prettier ones […]
It’s a little hard to get live green food out of the cold frames right now.
And anyway, we don’t have that many cold frames; … and they weren’t planted that thickly… and they’ve been depleted by earlier harvests. We just need to get more cold frames (not just Reemay over hoops)… and we are working on that.
Meanwhile, what’s to do to get fresh salad greens while waiting for the snow to melt so I can harvest mache, Austrian winter pea shoots and maybe arugula and some land cress? One sprouts.
Because, frankly, I really want to avoid lettuce grown like this.
Sprouting is easy. Gather some wide-mouth pint or quart canning jars and some food-grade seeds (NOT seeds for planting which may be treated with something noxious).
Winter. Cold and white this February. We have seen -2F (-19F) several nights, which, for us, is cold, and it’s been sustained. There are days where the high temperature nudged 15 or even 20F ( -9 or even 77C). Even the Chesapeake is frozen in […]
To the music of “These are a few of my favorite things” – and with apologies to Maria! – let’s all sing together:
Soufflés & Quiches, Omelets & Crepes
Clafoutis, Flans, and Croque-Madames
Waffles & Cremes, Meringue & Mousse
Not to mention sunnyside up
Custard & Ice, and Devil & Neige
Angel Food Cake
Steamed bread pudding and lemon pound cake
These are a few of my favorite things.
Somewhere along the line, eggs got a bad rap. Too much fat! Too much cholesterol! This from people who did not blink an eye about recommending margarine and other wholly unnatural man-made white fats. And then thanks to the horrors of factory farming where hundred of thousands of hens are crammed together, fed junk, and forced to lay continuously, salmonella scares have further discourage the eating of eggs. But of course! Anything produced in factory “farms” conditions is going to be less than wholesome.
But a pastured flock has access to a varied diet of grass, weeds, bugs; enjoy sunshine & fresh air; range and do what chicken naturally do (scratch, run, take dust baths etc). Those eggs are truly an amazing food, a power house of protein, minerals, vitamin and oligo elements – delicious and nutritious.
In my area, eggs from pastured hens sell vary from $4.25 to $5.75 a dozen, generally depending on whether the grain rations are GMO-free or organic, or soy-free. At 2 oz per egg extra-large), that’s 24 oz or 1.5 lb per dozen – or $2.83 to$ 3.83 per pound – a pretty good deal!
Besides, consider that chicken lay unfertilized eggs while wild birds lay eggs only after mating. Does that give us an indication of how long the relationship between chicken and humankind is?
So… need some egg ideas?
IDEAS FOR BREAKFAST, LUNCH OR LIGHT DINNER
IDEAS FOR LUNCH OR DINNER
Everyone like deviled eggs! Here’s my recipe.
Sunnyside eggs anytime – that’s the ultimate fast food!
IDEAS FOR DESSERT
While many desserts include eggs, some rely almost exclusively on eggs, including these:
Baked custard. I vary the sweeteners, often using honey, as well as the flavoring: almond extract, fennel seeds, orange oil are flavors I often use (but vanilla bean is the most frequent)
Fruit curd, including lemon curd are good on toast, mixed with plain yogurt, as cake filling, or as a base in a fruit tart. Add whipped cream and/or whipped egg whites and you’ve got lemon mousse.
Meringue & passion fruit curd… and also pavlovas
Despite Thomas Jefferson’s efforts 200 years ago, olive trees don’t grow in Virginia. Erratic winter weather with nightly lows in the single digit temperatures followed by days at 70F — as well as hot muggy summers — don’t make happy olive trees. Anything below -10C […]
Before I planted blackberries in the garden, I used to go forage for them. They grow all over the place, tenaciously clinging to their chosen spot and taking over the neighborhood: the clump expands rapidly and any cane that touches the ground roots to produce yet another plant. They are ferocious too with long hard and sharp thorns that will draw blood as you gingerly try to pluck a berry. It takes quite a while to pick a gallon of wild blackberries
But not the plants I have: they are thornless with large and flavorful berries. Labels have – of course – been lost, but at least one of them (based on its behavior) is “Triple Crown”, the other might be “Apache” and “Navaho”. They are beautiful in bloom and mesmerizing in fruit. Last winter, I did not prune them. I mean, I meant to prune them, but it never happened. And that Triple Crown took full advantage of it, pushing itself over the timid raspberries, flinging its 10-ft long canes in the asparagus bed, and blocking all the paths around it. On the bright side, it’s producing lots of berries. Which for now need to be picked every other days, but soon, it’ll be every day.
And so I have to do something with them. Here are some ideas: (more…)
Who hasn’t plucked and munched on a handful of wild blackberries or huckleberries while hiking? Didn’t it feel like a tiny treasure hunt, the taste of wild berries sharper, more intense than their tamed counterparts? Sure, foraging for berries takes time, but you didn’t lift […]