Sunday, May 31, 2009

Daily Harvest

On the other side of our back fence is a street. We have to walk around the block to get there and it keeps us from watering and weeding there are much as we should. Our landscaping idea was to put a weed blocker, cover it in wood chip mulch and then plant some low water need plants through it.

Along the parking strip we planted a meyer lemon, a fig and an olive tree. Along the fence we planted lavender.

Jonathan and I went back there today to clean up and water. The plants are finally taking off!

I trimmed up the lavender plants and weeded them out.

Now we have so much lavender!

While I was holding the bundle of lavender, this bee came to investigate to flowers!

Cute cute little honey bee!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Daily Dinner

Fava Beans

According to Pam Pierce, the author of Golden Gate Gardening, fava beans were the only beans known to the early Europeans.

It is fascinating to me to think about pole beans coming from the Americas and our whole hearted acceptance of them into European cuisine. The fava has moved from being the only bean to being a marginalized bean in a relatively short period of time.

Daily Harvest

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Daily Dinner

We had these mashed turnips & potatoes, and these fava beans & peas with salmon that Jonathan cooked with the preserved lemons that we traded with Dafna for.

So delicious!

Thank you Dafna!

Daily Barter

I met a new friend and neighbor through Forage Oakland!

We biked to her house today with a dozen eggs and two different kinds of marmalade.

She gave us two jams, pickled carrots, preserved lemons and a delicada squash plant!

She has a blog about her jams and pickles and about the plants around her. Beautiful walnut tree photos!
Here is her blog if you want to get your own strawberry or jalapeNo jam:

Monday, May 25, 2009

Daily Harvest

Raspberries for breakfast!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Backyard Birds

I saw this scrubjay in the backyard, sitting on the bee hive again. It turns out it was not eating dead bees after all. It catches live bees out of the air! A dangerous snack.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Daily Harvest

The chickens have discovered that the fava beans are food.

Over the years Jonathan has trained our chickens to jump for treats out of his hand. The chickens combined this old trick with their new discovery and have been terrorizing the favas. I've kind of given up the idea that we will share the bounty. Which is disapointing because these were the slowest growing favas on earth and I have spent a long time waiting for the beans to be ready.

I've been waiting basically since November when we planted them.

But today I noticed some beans that the chickens haven't gotten to yet and decided to pick all the beans I could find, even those on the small side, just to have them not go to the chickens.

If you look closely you can see some beans that have been snapped in half by the chickens.

It's hard to begrudge them the beans though, when I think about it, feeding them is feeding myself.

Daily Harvest

Monday, May 18, 2009

Daily Harvest

I invited my classroom volunteers over for dinner tonight as a thank you for all of their help.
It has been an amazing experience having enough adults in the classroom. I feel like I ended the day content instead of with a list of kids' unmet needs in my head.

Thanks to my volunteers my students usually have someone on hand to read to, to tie their shoes, to help them get a band-aid, to practice writing their names with them.

We had a garden dinner with pasta made from our eggs, with a white sauce Jonathan made with all kinds of green herbs and garlic greens. We had salad with red oak leaf lettuce and sweet new peas. I made ice cream (using 4 of our eggs) flavored with cardamom and cinnamon. It was delicious and a lovely change for us to get to spend time together outside of the classroom.

Thank you volunteers!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Daily Harvest, Daily Dinner

It feels like we have returned to the season of garden dinners! We had roasted turnips with (non-garden) potatoes & rosemary. Who knew turnips were so delicious!? Also artichokes, roasted walking onions, turnip greens, and dang good wine from Discount Grocery Outlet (aka Grosh-Out aka Disco Grosh).

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Backyard Birds

I think this scrubjay was eating the dead bees that get piled so tidily outside the hive.

In other bird news, the baby chickadees have grown up and left! No more peeping noises from the box. No more over-worked parent birds flying in and out like maniacs. We missed the moment of them flying off. Good luck little birds!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Daily Dinner Daily Barter

We traded a dozen eggs to our friend Bob for more venison from the deer he shot last year. Look at all the meat he gave us! So generous!
I cooked up some of the venison steak with tons of herbs, plum wine, and lots of olive oil. I cooked it very slowly 'till it got all melty. Yum!!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Friday, May 8, 2009

Monday, May 4, 2009

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Daily Harvest

Daily Dinner

Our dinner was almost all from the yard tonight!

Noodles made with a backyard egg. Salad that is finally growing in. Tender tender artichokes, with no choke! The whole stems were delicious. Jonathan made a white sauce for the noodles with garlic greens and other herbs. The dipping sauce for the artichokes was with home made vinegar.

I feel like the garden has been in kind of a lull recently, and I'm excited to start a season of more garden dinners.

Other People's Trees

The house next door to our friend's house isn't currently occupied, but their lemon tree was! Strangely for this area, the lemons are regular lemons, not Meyer lemons. Sour! Yummy!

Now that I've learned to make marmalade I can't stop.

This batch is lemon-ginger.

Saturday, May 2, 2009