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Showing posts from January, 2014

Sesame Soba Noodles

This is a really fantastic salad which is both tasty and healthy. I modified it slightly from a post from my fellow blogger at the Taste Tickler and I made it for guests last night and we ate almost the entire bowl. That’s always a good sign. Ingredients Salad Mixture 12 oz Soba Noodles 4 cups of Broccoli Slaw mix 4 cups of Cole Slaw mix 1 bunch Scallions, trimmed and sliced in half and chopped. ½ Red Pepper, sliced into thin strips D ressing 1/2 cup chunky Peanut Butter 3 Tbsp Rice Vinegar 3 Tbsp Toasted Sesame Oil 3 Tbsp  Tamari or other soy sauce 2 Tbsp Honey or Agave Nectar 1 Tbsp finely grated fresh Ginger 1 Garlic clove, pressed or minced 1 Tbsp Chili and Garlic Pasta or Sriracha Sauce 1 Tbsp Sesame Seeds Garnish Coarsely chopped cilantro 1 lime, sliced into wedges and squeezed over each serving Cook the soba noodles by bringing a large pot of water to a boil and cooking the noodles according to the package directions.  Drain and rinse with

Answers to a few of your questions, Part Two

Here is the second installment with the rest of the varieties I'm growing. Peppers - I love peppers of all types. I enjoy traditional bell peppers and the hot ones and I wanted grow some that were a bit different. Ozark Giant - A traditional bell pepper, which will give you lots of stunning large peppers. Purple Jalapeño - A traditional jalapeño which changes to a rich purple color before shifting to red. Most people pick jalapeños when they are green and frankly they aren't that good. If you leave them on the plant, they go to purple, chocolate and then red and they are hotter and taste much better with a really nice sweet taste. Corno di Toro - The "horn of the bull".  A wonderful pepper which is almost impossible to find in any market outside of Italy. Sweet with a hint of spice, they are amazing when roasted. Sigaretta de Bergamo - Another Italian variety which is very hard to find. Fry them or throw them in a salad. India Jwala - If you like hot c

Answers to a few of your questions, Part One

I've had so much interest about the garden and I thought it might be good to answer a few basic questions. 1) Why grow from seed, isn't it just easier to buy the plants from your local nursery? YES, it certainly is easier, but here are a few things to consider. If you buy your plants, you have far less choice in which varieties to grow and you really don't know from where your plants have come. Finally, if you are trying to grow 100% organic and non GMO, you need to grow from seed. 2) Where do you get your seeds? There are some really good sites and you can order many seed catalogs, but I personally like Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds in Mansfield MO. They actually have three locations, one in Petaluma CA and another in Wethersfield CT. Their catalog is great and really well organized, or you can order online at 3) What are you growing and why? I like to try a broad variety of vegetables and I have decided on the following mix. Tomatoes : I grow

Garden Update- The beans are in!

With the crazy warm weather here, I've just decided to take a chance and start getting things in the ground. So the seedlings are coming along nicely and the beans have been planted in the bed. It is going to be 78F here today and next week in the 80's, so the seedlings are outside soaking up the sun. I honestly think they've grown in just the few hours they've been out. These are basically the tomatoes, peppers and onions.  And here are some very happy beans. I've got the green beans, lima beans peas and dragon beans in. The irrigation is working well and if this weather keeps up, I may have to open a vegetable stand. I'm really impressed with the dragon beans and how well they are looking. The beans are stunning and hard to find here, so I'm looking forward to cooking with them. If anyone has a good recipe, please pass it along. The soil, which I think I mentioned previously, is an amazing mix of 1/3 compost, 1/3 peat moss and 1/3 ver

The Raised Beds

I've spent a lot of time working with my friend and contractor to decide on the best way to design the beds and here is what we have so far. Here is the basic bed with hardware cloth on the bottom to keep out the gophers. The bed is just about filled with the soil mix, which is 1/3 compost, 1/3 peat moss and 1/3 vermiculite. It's so loose you can put your hand to the bottom. Next step is to hook up the irrigation system. We have decided to use a drip emitter system which can water itself via the lawn sprinkler system. Then Dieter will build the sides. We need sides with screens to keep out the animals. 

Raised Beds - Organic Garden

Those of you who know me well, know that I'm a farm boy at heart. I think once you've spent time on a farm, that satisfaction in seeing things grow and enjoying the fruits of your labors never really leaves you. So, I finally committed to building some raised beds in my yard, so I wanted to share the process with you. A did a few things to ensure that the results would be impressive. Firstly, I had raised beds built, as they will allow high density planting and high yields. Secondly, I purchased all organic soil to fill the beds. It was an upfront expense, but well worth it, as it will only need to be added to each year. I used a well know ratio called Mel's mix, which is 1/3 compost. 1/3 peat moss and 1/3 vermiculite. Thirdly, I ordered my seeds and started them indoors. This has a few benefits. One, I can ensure that my seeds, and subsequent plants are organic, non GMO. Two, I have a much broader choice of interesting options to grow. Thirdly, I can get started earlie