Saturday, February 22, 2014

A Pictureless Update

This is just a brief blog update to say I haven't gone away, but am having problems with out computer as well as with blogger. The computer issues have kept me away  for some time and now that I'm trying to blog again, blogger doesn't want to add my photos.  It is irritating to say the least and making me wonder if I should look into another blogging platform. I seem to have so much trouble with photos.
Anyway, the news around here is seed starting and dreaming, oh dreaming about spring! We are in the midst of the worst winter we've had in years. Very depressing. But seeing the baby alliums popping up is cheering and today the skies are blue and the temps are mild. Later this week it's back to single digits.
But 2014 is looking to be an awesome year around here. Last year was a toughie, with our older son's divorce and move to Florida. We miss him a lot. But he has a new girlfriend and...I'm going to be a Grammy!! Something I had just about given up on. It is a boy and he is due to arrive in early August. The height of gardening time and we will have to travel down to Florida to meet him, but priorities! I'm feeling very blessed.
Well, here's hoping I can get this blog moving again soon. I tend to lose my motivation when there are technical difficulties to deal with, so hoping they don't last.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Starting the New Year With Cold Weather But Warm Tummy

Like much of the country we are in the deep freeze here in CT! Yesterday was spent digging out the snow-covered driveway and keeping the woodstove going strong just to stay comfortable and cozy inside. Now that the holidays are past, it is very quiet and low key around here and I find I am actually missing the busy activities of Christmas and the company of friends and family. I made my first seed orders on January 1 and received the first delivery of seeds today, a small order from Johnny's Selected Seeds, which really put a smile on my face. Normal activities will be starting up again next week and now is a good time to experiment with interesting recipes, the kind that both stick to your ribs and are healthy. It's time to get to using up all that summer produce I stored in various ways.
The 2013 garden produced the very best onions and shallots I have ever grown and they are keeping beautifully in our unheated basement. I had a bushel of large Ailsa Craig onions that are only supposed to keep well for two months but are still holding up well after four and I haven't even begun to use my keeping onions. So yesterday I tried out a neat idea I stumbled upon in a cookbook at our local library:caramellized onions done in the slow cooker to be used for various meals. I'm not sure they're actually caramelized, but they sure were easy and taste great.
 All it required were five pounds of sliced onions and one stick of butter in the crock-pot, cooked on low over 8 hours. OK, I'll admit, I cheated and did them on high over five, but they still turned out well.
Lots of juice though. I used some of the onions to spoon over pierogis that I'd made for supper. I divided some more into one-cup containers for the freezer to use in future meals. And all that juice plus the remaining onions I also froze, with plans to make a nice onion soup with them in a week or so. You know, the kind with chunks of bread and cheese melted on top. Yum. I'm making myself hungry just thinking about it. Today is all about making bread (pumpernickel, to be precise) and reading about cooking and gardening. And still cleaning up some of the remaining signs of the holiday festivities! Bring it on, 2014!