Monday, October 31, 2011

Garden Updates: Oct 31, 2011

Here are some front garden photos

I just had to share this GORGEOUS sunset! (taken from our front yard)
WARNING TO FASHION POLICE! YOU WILL SEE ONE OF THE ULTIMATE "No-no"s of fashion rules below! Proceed with caution!
I will "buffer" with a photo of my brother's camera on top of the roof, he has it on a automatic timed setting to get a sequencial shot.

OK, hope there was enough "buffering"!

Before that sunset was taken, my brother (who's a photographer) mumbled,"Awesome sunset", so I rushed out with my camera, not really considering my feet! Don't you just love the socks and sandals combo "LittleFoot"?  Our neighbor's black kitty has 3 extra toes on each of his front paws, hence his name. He's a sweet, friendly kitty. Unfortunately, I'm highly allergic to cats!
the shutter clicking is annoying him, seconds later he takes off!
OK, something pretty to offset the hideous sandal/socks combo!
The ONE & ONLY persimmon on our Fuyu tree
Second crop of Fuji apples
Our trusty Kumamoto Mandarin tree in the front has a good crop. You probably won't see too many pics of them in our Harvest Updates. They get picked and eaten immediately.
Here, you can see my brother's camera on the roof on upper left of the pic too.

Backyard view from our kitchen window. The pineapple sage brings the humming birds.
Titmouse eating something off the Rose of Sharon tree.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Homegrown Meals

Here we have a veggie sauté with HG Carrots, HG Chayote Greens, HG Peppers and organic ground turkey.

Here it is on a dinner plate with rice

I made Green Bean Casserole with HG Green Beans. Now, you may think, oh that's easy cookin' just throw in some Cream of Mushroom soup from Campbell's with some green beans, throw it in the oven and pop open a can of French's french fried onions when it's baked and you're set! WRONG! We're dairy and gluten free, so we don't have that luxury. I make my cream of mushroom soup from scratch with either soy or coconut milk and sorghum in place of wheat flour.
I fry my own onions with gluten free batter.
And there you have it: Dairy/Gluten free Southern comfort food with a side of corn on the cob!
Here I'm making Mabo Nasu (Eggplant). It has peppers, garlic chives and zucchini as well.
All home grown. I add ground turkey, organic miso, potato starch for making it a thicker sauce and a bit of toasted sesame oil. Yum!
Here's another shot
And finally, on the plate
Afternoon snack of White Guava and strawberry
Corn to munch on
Another stir-fry dish, this one with HG Zucchini, Carrots, Garlic Chives, and ground turkey, seasoned with garlic, gluten free soy-sauce and bit of agave.
Kung Pao Chicken without peanuts (we have peanut allergies). HG Carrots and Zucchini. Farmer's Market Celery and Brown Onion. Organic Chicken breast dice and seasoned with gluten free soy-sauce, rice vinegar, garlic and red pepper flakes. 
Veggie soup in organic home-made chicken broth. HG Collard Greens, HG Carrots, HG Zucchini, FM Red Onion and Celery. Seasoned with organic coriander powder, sea salt and organic pepper.
This is the Shiso Seed Tsukudani in preparation. I season it with a generous amount of soy-sauce and a bit of agave, then sauté until all the liquid evaporates. Let it cool, then store it away in the fridge. It'll keep for at least a year. You eat it as a condiment on rice. yum!
Here is the Shiso seed all finished and ready to put away in the fridge.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Harvest Updates: Oct 11, 2011

The first Chayote of the season!
Chayote Greens (aka Dragon Whiskers)
Peppers, Zuke, Eggplant, and the first White Guava of the season!
Corn, Fuji Apple, Strawberries, Burdock root, Tomatoes, Peppers, Beans and a Carrot.
Shiso's young seeds. We are going to cook them for a Japanese delicacy; Tsukudani. I'll go into more detail later.
New Zealand Spinach in the back and on the right, Dandelion on the left
Zucchini, Corn, Fig, Peppers and Carrots.
Peppers, Beans, Tomatoes, Corn, Eggplant, Fig, Strawberry, Okra and a mini Pomegranate
Strawberries in October? Yes, although not as much as during the summer.
Pineapple Guava, we got 3 this year. There's a few more on the tree, but I don't know if they'll develop in the winter.
Corn, Figs, Beans, Peppers, Apple, Eggplant, Strawberries, Tomatoes, Okra.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Garden Updates, Backyard; Oct 10th

It's been a long while since I've posted some garden updates! To appease you for my lack of continuity, I offer you some photos of flowers from my fall garden.

The fiery orange is the Canna Edulis, It's grown to be about 9' tall and is reaching for the skies. On it's right are Plumeria blossoms with their sweet scent.

Seeds forming on the Shiso(perilla) and below are pink Mums 
The left side are more mums and pelargoniums under the Mango and Rhubarb. The bright yellow blossom is the Luffa clinging to our rugged fence.

Now, onto some business! Here I'm prepping the bed to be planted with Broccoli and Daikon radishes
I'm starting our fall crops and some are sprouting, while others are still needing seeds to be planted. I've got Bulb Onion, Broccoli, Beans, Chard, Lettuce here.
Silly Janice, Peppers are for summer! I know, I know...OK, I'm going try to over-winter them in our make-shift green house. I hope it works, then we can get peppers earlier, come next spring.
Chayote are finally plumping up. Lots of eating to do soon! Might try to pickle some too. We've been enjoying the vigorous shoots as a sauté.
Just planted Garlic, yes a little late but hoping it will still be enough time. In the middle are Chinese yard long beans. Don't know if they will survive the coming frosts, but what the heck.
Bulb onions, somewhat growing some bulbs.
Cotton plants, I'm not making good use of this bed, it's a bit too shady for most crops. Maybe I can do Wild Strawberry, they don't mind shade...
Zucchini in the same bed as the cotton
Lettuce tucked in among the Bulb onions in different growth stages, you can see a tiny one above it.
Burdock, Garlic Chives and Yam tucked in rather haphazardly...

Same stuff another angle:
The herb bed
The neglected side: Blackberry has taken over! In front of it is the White Sapote grown from seed
This had tomatoes growing in it, I'm planning on growing Carrots/Bulb Onions next.
The lonely Luffa
Tree Collard going strong now! I like the flavor, it's not bitter.
These pics below were taken after a good rain storm, the first of the season that gave us 4" of rain. Perilla seeds being weighed down by rain drops
rain-soaked ground
See the rain drops on the Alstroemeria? I just love those drops, they look like jewels
Here are the Okra seed pods growing, I put my hand in the second pic just for size comparison