EcoMommyo's blog

The Greens Tidal Wave continues

Topbar Beehive with blooming Penstemon

Hey kids! It's been an exciting couple weeks as spring has finally arrived and that means, um, lots of things! It means I'm still getting greens fast and furious from the Beneficial Farms CSA. It means that the garden looks more alive and plants are in the ground with all their promise of delicious things. It means that our newly acquired BEES have several flowered things to investigate. It means that we turned on the grill this weekend and could stand around poking our grilling food and not wear a jacket. Oh the promise of spring and early summer.

Spring on hold

Tulip in snow

I can't stand it. I'm looking out my window and the snow is piling up. Okay, what's going on here. We turned in our taxes, we have skiied our last slope, my first proud tulip bulb was seconds away from blooming when a weird storm decided to pass over. I ask you, where was this snow the past few months.

The week without shopping

Full Fridge

This week I spent $134.02 on groceries. I nearly fainted when I tallied up the receipts I saved from food purchases. Suddenly the "the week without shopping" I read about in The New York Times Dining and Wine section seemed like the world's most brilliant idea. I e-headed over to the man who inspired this: Fat Guy at eGullet. He saved himself about $100 and several hours in shopping and transportation time by doing what I'm always saying we should do around the house: eat down the freezer, refrigerator and pantry.

When life gives you lemons...

Waffles with Lemon Curd and Orange Juice

This past week in the kitchen, I applied the old adage about life giving you lemons. In this case, I made limoncello and lemon curd from the Meyer Lemons that came with our Beneficial Farms CSA box. After my dark night of the soul regarding the squandered persimmon opportunities, it felt great to maximize use of something.

Squash-o-rama

Pie Pumpkins

Ladies and gentlemen, it was all about the squash this week. How to use it, can one type be substituted for another, what can it be served with, how long does it take to cook, etc. I had a mound of butternut squash sitting in the pantry that were tumbling out every time I opened the door. Having a several pound squash land on your feet several times is an excellent inspiration for finding a good use for it.

On not wasting food

Spiced Persimmon and Walnut Muffins

Persimmons are very pretty. They are a lovely dusky orange color and their stems look like a blooming flower. I admired them for quite some time on my kitchen counter before I reminded myself that they were food and fresh fruit does not last forever. I pureed them after cutting out a few squishy bits and the equally lovely puree went in to the refrigerator. It came out for a spectacular batch of persimmon muffins and then went back to sit some more. By the time I was ready to use more, it was too late. The puree had been colonized and had to be pitched (at least in to the compost bin).

Full Refrigerator in 2009

Roasted Squash Risotto and Green Beans

I start the year with a bursting refrigerator and freezer and pantry. I am very lucky. I am lucky to have money for lots of good food. However, this excess is silly. This week I'll be pulling stashes of frozen soup out of the freezer, rethinking the things in the pantry, and in general looking at what we have and wondering "what am I saving this for? A visit from the queen?"

Cook vs. Persimmon

Two-Tone Persimmon Pudding

2009 is breathing its icy breath down our necks. It was a mighty chilly Christmas holiday with either ice or slush to line your path. Again, the cook runs to the kitchen with all haste to conjure up warm and comforting food. We are taking a two week break from the weekly CSA delivery (like at Thanksgiving, even farmers get a little break) but we were sent off with an extra heavy bag to tide us over until the first week of January.

Looking for color in winter

Butternut Squash

We have passed the Winter Solstice, the longest day of the year, and now are definitely pointed toward spring. However you wouldn't know that with a week of snow headed our way and a white Christmas on tap. Since the days have been grey as of late, I've been looking for light and warmth in the kitchen. Thankfully the oranges of squash, the reds of pomegranates, and the verdant greens have been helpful in that regard.

Rethinking the salad

Chocolate-Pumpkin Layer Cake slice

We had several lovely salads this week; salads beautiful in color and composition. They were all great but strangely unsatisfying. I can eat as many nourishing greens as I can fit on a plate and I have realized that unless they are warm, it's just not going to scratch the itch. In contrast, the baked acorn squash with the chicken fricassee last night was just great. I know I'm supposed to eat lots of greens and they are the tried and true diet food but nowadays they need to be paired with something warm.

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