Summertime, she rolled right in…

strawbuchedited

…sweetly and gently, with a few days of high 70s and clear skies. The only thing to do, really, was to celebrate with our first fire pit meal of the season. While the kids ran around and C got the fire started, I whipped up an all-ages frothy cool beverage to enjoy, and it was too damn good not to share. Even if you’re not brewing your own kombucha at home, you should probably try this, anyway, with a store-bought ginger or plain kombucha.

Ingredients:

-1 quart kombucha (first ferment, or a gingered second ferment, or store-bought plain or ginger)
-2 cups frozen strawberries
-1/4 cup lemon juice
-1/2 cup maple syrup

A lot depends on the sweetness of your strawberries (and even your kombucha). You may want to adjust the lemon juice and maple syrup amounts. I’m only guessing, anyway, since I just glugged them both in.

So, whirr it all around in the high-powered blending instrument of your choice and enjoy the effervescent sweet-tartness! A sprig of chocolate mint makes just about everything better, in case you were wondering about the green stuff in my glass.

strawbuch2

We roasted whatever we could put on a stick, including dessert. For a while, I avoided s’mores entirely as I don’t know of any marshmallows available that are made without corn syrup, but since discovering the world of making my own maple marshmallows, I wouldn’t want to go back, anyway. They take only about 15 minutes to make, and as long as you have a candy thermometer, it’s easy-peasy.

mallowsfire

The first recipe I tried, a few years back, made for a mess when roasting, but I had my first go-round with this recipe from The Urban Poser, and not only is the ingredient ratio spot-on, but even without letting them sit to dry out, as suggested, my mallows were perfect roasters, even just hours after cooking up the goo, behaving almost exactly like the Kraft marshmallows I grew up with.

Only maple syrup, gelatin (we use the same grass-fed gelatin as suggested in the recipe), water, and vanilla. Simple and perfect.

smore

Until you add cinnamon to the marshmallow goo before it sets. Then, you go beyond perfection and achieve marshmallow Nirvana.

Some wildlife wanted to get in on the action, including fireflies galore, and a visiting snapping turtle. An evening bursting with growth and life and early summer magic. At least I was able to enjoy it before the most cruel and unusual head cold from Hell knocked me on my ass for 36 hours. I was the one pampered on Father’s Day. Oh, well. Regularly scheduled programming back tomorrow!

snapper2

 

Come Into My Garden :: 5

lettuce

So, I don’t know if it’s the lack of a farm cat (RIP Kitzman), or just a surge in the chipmunk population, but all three rounds of the winter squash seeds we’ve planted have been dug up and cached by those jerks. Oh, and three packets worth of sunflowers. I’m starting both in flats now, and hope the squash will have enough time.

peas

We live about 1/3 mile up a dirt road and exist in an entirely different zone than our neighbors at the bottom of the hill. Only just this week did our peas require anything to climb on. This past weekend, I visited a friend just a wee south and east of us, and she served fresh-picked peas in our lunch-date soup. This has me experiencing some pretty intense zone envy, but I know we’ll catch up soon.

noradishes

Okay, so here’s a thing. These are my radishes. Four weeks in. No bulb. No…radish. The greens are a treat for the goats and all, but I really did want some radishes to pickle. I guess it’s time for a soil test. And yes, weeding is on my to-do list for the week whole summer.

Seeded

Blue Hubbard squash (three times) eaten
Sunflowers eaten
Cucumbers
Delicata squash

Transplanted/Planted

Gilbertie tomatoes x 14
Blue cherry toms x 8
Various Heirloom slicing toms x 8
Red Celery
Basil in ludicrous quantity

Harvesting

same as last check-in, minus the dandelions
Daisies
Irises
thinnings from the beet patch

Plans for this week include planting out the peppers and cabbages, and crossing our fingers that our CSA has winter squash starts.

What’s happening in your garden?

One Shot :: 13 and This Week In My Kitchen :: Blog Hop

oneshotchives

Chop Chives, Carry Lemonade

I shared some kitchen excitement earlier this week when I gloated over our morel harvest, but there were a few other shiny moments, as well, like when I finally took a few minutes to thin the beet patch. I had been annoyed, a few weeks ago, when C had seeded so heavily. This afternoon, though, the result was a colander full of plucked beet sprouts that stretched the handful of lettuce I had on hand into a full blown dinner salad:

beetsalad

If this is the only way to get my kid to eat beets, I’m okay with that.

What’s going on in your kitchen this week? Hop on over to Heather’s place to join in.