Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Earth's Bounty

The little ones and I did manage to sneak away for a few hours on Monday to pick strawberries. (But I didn't pull out the camera; we were too busy!) The Wild Child was mainly useless; Martha Jr. and I picked about 4 quarts of berries between us. We also bought goodies from the farm stand store- more produce, jam, bread, and cookies. We had what my grandmother used to call a "vegetable dinner" that night, with a pot of black eyed peas, fresh tomato slices with green onion, squash cooked with sweet onion, and bread sticks. Our modern days twists included some rice to go with the peas and steaming the squash instead of boiling it to death. She would have made corn bread, too; we went with the bread sticks we bought at the market. And of course, we always have "vegetable dinners" now with menus she never would have dreamed of.

Some of the recipes we've been enjoying lately are the mushroom soup from Poor Girl Eats Well and variations. I had some broccoli I needed to use up so I subbed broccoli for mushrooms in the same recipe and it turned out to be delicious. We've also been enjoying the tomatoes and basil from our garden. DH puts tomato slices on an open baguette, tops it with basil and cheese, then pops it in the oven until the cheese gets melty and the bread gets toasty. We had that for lunch today and EVERYBODY ate it, which is rare around our house. (Well, everybody who got to the table fast enough. The Eldest is still sleeping at 3:45 in the afternoon. She's on spring break so she's taking full advantage.) He says don't try it with store bought tomatoes; they won't even come close to being any good.

We tend to cycle through recipes. We go crazy for one recipe or another, having it once a week or so for the longest time, then we get sick of it and that's it for a while. Or permanently. I've been sick of just about ALL of our regular recipes lately, yet too swamped to search out new recipes, so we've been in quite the culinary rut. Luckily I pulled out that PGEW recipe and gave it a try; it was a hit with 3 out of 5 of us, which counts as a win around here! Then I modified it with the broccoli and DH came up with his sandwich, and just like that we've got 3 new recipes in the rotation. We're also pulling an old recipe back in the mix since DH found a miso made out of chick peas instead of soy. It's a recipe from a Robin Robertson cookbook; it's for White Bean Cassoulet if I remember correctly, and the miso is an essential ingredient. We really liked it so I'm looking forward to having it on the menu plan again.

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