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Archive for the ‘Cooking’ Category

Currant Jelly

Ruby glowing tart currant jelly is one of my favorites. This year we had enough berries to make a bit of this luscious treat. How are your bushes this year? Have you had any issue with disease or bugs? What did you do about it? Cook the liquid until it reaches jell point. Here’s how […]

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Focus on Rhubarb

From being a humble plant that outlasts everything else planted in a garden, rhubarb has become fashionable; it now takes a center role in zingy cocktails, is partnered with various fruits in jams and is a favorite for desserts. Happily it still is very easy to grow.  Find a spot in your yard that gets some good […]

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Making Rose Petal Beads

Have you ever wondered where the name rosary comes from? Originally the beads were made from rose petals! Here’s how you can make your own scented beads.

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Focus on Arugula

This week I think my arugula plants have grown about three inches.  This spicy plant can be eaten in salads with an oil and vinegar dressing or used as a zesty garnish.  We really like to top a just baked pizza with this richly flavored plant. Arugula likes cool weather and a nitrogen rich soil. […]

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Do you have lemon balm, (Melissa officinalis) coming out your ears this time of year?  Mine is ready to take over the entire perennial bed.  In addition to tasting great it’s also supposed to decrease stress and increase mental function so it’s time to get cooking! Here are some of my favorite ways to use this abundant […]

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Rhubarb Crisp

The rhubarb is exploding out of the ground – it’s time to make a crisp!  There are many ways to eat this tangy plant but my favorite way is in a crunchy, nutty, sweet and sour dessert. Ingredients: Fresh rhubarb stems 1/4 cup tapioca or flour for thickening the juices 2 cups sugar One cup […]

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Elderberries are in bloom now in the lower elevations of Puget Sound.  The Blue or the Black Elderberry is the one to use instead of the Red Elderberry. These fragrant white to pink flowers can be gathered, steeped, then the liquid sugared to make a delicious syrup.  If you have the patience to wait, the dark blue berries […]

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Plum Crazy

With all the heat this summer the plums are ripening sooner than usual.  Yippee! I never really understood the term “plum crazy” until this year’s banner harvest; I can’t stop picking when there is ripe, juicy fruit to be had and every possible space is covered with some plum related project. “Are you nearly done?” […]

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Fermented Dill Pickles

Making great pickles is easy! Here’s what you need: Brine solution is made by dissolving 2 tablespoons of salt into a quart of water. Cover and let the pickles sit until the desired level of fermentation is reached. They will be cloudy and bubbly. It usually takes 5 to 10 days for pickles to ferment […]

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Plant Dyes

How do you know if a plant might make a good dye? Rub it between your fingers and see if it stains. If it does give it a try! To help the dye “bite” the yarn or fabric you need to use a mordant. Pickling alum is one I like to use; easy to find […]

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