Monday, July 5, 2010


ashley picking oats

our wwoofer left this morning. boohoo. she will be missed. she made some great meals for us and fit in very nicely. the kids loved her, jaden cried for about an hour after she left. i hate seeing my little girl so sad.

yesterday i made a crisp that was the best ever. i sliced up peaches and apricots to fill a pie plate, stirred in a dab of honey and flour to thicken and then mixed in chopped up cinnamon basil, bergamot and sage to spice it up a bit. i made a crumb topping:

3/4 cup oatmeal
3/4 cup flour
3/4 cup raw sugar
1/2 cup butter? (i just put in a few dollops from my room temperature roll so i don't know how much)
1 pinch salt

mix together with your fingers and squish in your hands to make it crumbly.

i sprinkled that on top and then baked at 325 for 30 minutes until it was golden on top and all yummy, bubbly.

i made a lemon verbena syrup to top it and some natural vanilla ice cream (if i'd thought ahead i would have made some lemon verbena goat's milk ice cream but i didn't). the syrup was delicious! we have leftovers so i'm thinking either some lemonade or lemon verbena soda later today.

lemon verbena syrup:

lemon verbena leaves
lemon balm leaves
rosemary leaves

i didn't measure but i did equal parts of the lemon herbs and 1/3 part rosemary. next time i think i will add more rosemary, maybe 1/2 part to 1 part of the other.

i loosely chopped the herbs, added to a saucepan and covered with about 1 1/2 cups water. brought it to a boil, turned it off and let it steep for 10 minutes. then i strained off the herbs, measured the water and added an equal amount of organic white sugar (raw could be used but i wanted the presentation to be pretty so i used white sugar which made the syrup a beautiful vibrant lime greeny yellow color.)

i put that back on the heat and boiled down a bit until it thickened. then cooled and poured into a bottle.

to serve:
a portion of the crisp, topped with ice cream and drizzled with syrup.

the results:
lots of 'mmmmmms' and smiles.

now i'm busy bouncing between housework, making a natural cleaning book for a housewarming gift and working on a future issue of herbal roots. there are just not enough hours in the day! i am going to have to start setting my alarm to get up earlier each day so i can get more done, that's all there is to it.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

independence days challenge year 3

not a whole lot going on this week...busy making lots of soap and we harvested some honey. time to make some mead!

Planted: nothing

Harvested: chicken eggs, milk, 1 zucchini, lamb's quarters, herbs, flowers, honey

Preserved: made 4 more batches of soap, 6 gallons honey

Want Not: purchased 3 more baskets for soap displays at the market

Waste Not: food scraps to chickens and/or compost (chickens dig in compost too).

Community: sold eggs and milk to locals, sold soap, wool, eggs, lamb's quarters, flowers at farmer's market (we are attending 2 a week this summer); bartered milk for veggies; have been purchasing all of our veggies and fruit from the farmer's market instead of the grocery store; bartered soap for a pretty ceramic dish to put my business cards in

Eat the Food: eggs, milk (yogurt and cheese), green beans,broccoli, onions, carrots, green beans, tomatoes from market, parsley, sage, thyme, rosemary plus various herbs for tea: lemon balm, lemon verbena, catnip, motherwort, bergamot; peaches
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