Garden Variety Friday FO

This morning, instead of working out, I worked in the garden. I cleared out another section and put together my new pop up greenhouse! You can see I left some flowers at the end of the garden for the pollinators. I’m still finding bees in the garden.

I planted kale, arugula, and two varieties of lettuce seed. My hope is the cooler weather and greenhouse will keep the moths at bay. I will have to watch the slugs, though. Fingers crossed we’ll have some greens soon! And if it works well, next spring I’ll plant cabbage in there, and hope to have some to harvest early.

I also got my hair cut off this week! I love it. I tried to grow it long, but once it hit a certain length I kept pulling it back. Why have long hair if you only wear it pulled into a ponytail? So I went back to short hair. I will probably never try to grow it long again.

Do you have any finished objects to share today?

Garden Update

I spent some time in the garden this morning. One of the great things about being a lazy gardener is the surprises, like when your Japanese Indigo flowers and you didn’t know how pretty their little pink flowers could be. I also found some volunteer Lamb’s Ear. I don’t know where that came from, but I’ll keep it. There were tenacious weeds. These weren’t the same plants that I had pulled up in the spring. These were other weeds that took the place of the weeds pulled up in the spring, like Bitter Dock and Evening Primrose. I like Evening Primrose, but they will take over so I made sure to pull up what I could. I found two bell peppers and a few springs of basil to add to our pizza today.

I amended the soil with compost when I made the second planting of cabbage, and it did help the plants make heads. Too bad the cabbage moths got to them, even under the netting. I guess I’ll have to try something different if I’m going to get cabbage and kale out of the garden.

My plan is to spend the rest of the day knitting on the couch. I’m so glad it’s October!

Saturyay

I’m still fighting a summer cold. My doc says 7-10 days is normal for a virus, so hopefully I’ll be right as rain by tomorrow.

My first canned tomatoes.

The garden is producing tons of tomatoes. No one seems to be eating them, so I started canning. This is my first batch. The pink is German Pink and the other two are Cherokee Purple. I wasn’t sure how the Cherokee Purple would can, but they peeled better than the German Pink, although you can see they are seedy. Will still be good in soups, I bet. I also canned two jars of Bob’s tomatillo salsa.

I finished clue seven of the mystery knit along early in the week. The last clue is out, so I plan to finish this up this weekend, if I can. Lots of beading!

Other than that, not very productive this week. Today I need to start collecting the flax seeds in the garden and will start retting some flax for fiber. It got away from me since I’ve been sick. And I want to sew on my overalls this weekend. Hopefully I’ll have something for a Year of Projects update tomorrow!

Tomato Cobbler

Cinna Knits suggested I make tomato cobbler with my plethora of tomatoes from the garden. Tomato Cobbler?! What’s that?! I had to try it. I’ve never made a savory cobbler before.

I basically followed this recipe. However, I tweaked it a lot. So here are my instructions for a vegan and gluten free version.

Heat about 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat in a cast iron skillet. Peel and thinly slice 1 and 1/2 yellow onions. (Because that’s all the onions I had.) Add about 1 teaspoon of salt. Sauté until transparent, or go ahead and carmelize them, which is what I did.

While the onions are carmelizing, peel and mince two large cloves of garlic. Rinse and de-stem about 3 cups of cherry tomatoes. I used Igleheart Yellow Cherry from my garden. I also had a couple of larger Cherokee Purple that needed eaten, so I cored and cut them into quarters. Four cups of tomatoes? At this time I also pulled two bunches of basil leaves off the stem and cut them into large pieces.

Once the onions are carmelized, add the minced garlic and sauté together for a minute or two. Add 3-4 tablespoons (what I refer to as “a splash”) of balsamic vinegar and stir until the liquid has mostly evaporated. Add 2 tablespoons of flour. (I used a gluten free blend from Nuts.com, similar to Bob’s Red Mill.) Stir until the flour forms a paste. Or, if you are like me, you won’t have enough liquid for that. I didn’t want to add more balsamic so I added a little water.

Add the tomatoes and basil leaves, 1 teaspoon of salt, and remove from heat. Stir well. Set aside. At this point I covered it to get a little more liquid so it was easier to combine.

I had already de-petaled a few calendula flowers, de-leaved a few fresh thyme sprigs, and cut fresh sage leaves into slivers for my biscuit dough. I love cooking from my garden!

To make the biscuits blend together 1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour, 3/4 cups corn grits, 1/4 cup nutritional yeast (instead of cheese), 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt. Work in 4 tablespoons of Earth Balance vegan butter and the calendula, thyme, and sage. Once that was crumbly, Add about 1 cup oat milk with 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar, instead of buttermilk. I had to mess with the dry ingredients to get the dough consistency right. If you make biscuits a lot, you get it. (Or you can follow the recipe linked above.)

Once the dough was ready, and I had given the tomato mixture another turn, I scooped up the biscuit dough and dropped it onto the cobbler, still in the cast iron skillet. I ended up with six biscuit blobs.

Bake in a 375 degree Fahrenheit oven for 45 minutes, or until the topping is golden and the tomato mixture is bubbly. We’re having this tonight with burgers.

I have to say, it’s pretty tasty. It will be great with a bison patty.

Sorry if this is vague. This is how I cook, like my Grandma. “By guess, and by gosh… By guess I made it, and by gosh you’d better eat it!”

In other news, I have been sick twice in two weeks! This time it’s an upper respiratory infection. I was down and out for 48 hours. I’m feeling better today, but I’m trying to take it easy as I’m still fatigued. I do hope to get to some knitting this weekend. Sewing may be too strenuous.

Just the YOP

Fiber Art

I framed my second to last piece! I just need to finish the stitching on the last piece and then frame it, and then I will have all 10 pieces complete!

Knitting

I’ve started on one sleeve on the Milkshake Cardigan.

Sewing

I’ve started sewing my yarn ball overalls.

Gardening

It’s tomato season!

This has been a Year of Projects Update. You can learn more about the group on Ravelry. You can read my updated list of projects here.

Garden Update

Twocumbers (I have to give credit to Clara Parkes for that name.)

I cleared all of the cucumber and zucchini plants out of the garden. We couldn’t handle any more cukes or zukes. I’ve got plenty for more pickling, and Bob made a delicious vegan lasagna with zucchini sliced lengthwise instead of noodles.

I transplanted the kale, cabbage, and broccoli seedlings for fall. I hope this net keeps the cabbage moths off. I also transplanted arugula, chard, and Bibb lettuce seedlings.

In other exciting news, we have blackberries! Which are my favorite, even if the brambles jump out and scratch me.

It’s worth it.

Gluten Free Zucchini Bread

  • 4 medium eggs
  • 3/4 cup melted butter, vegan butter, or oil
  • 3 cups grated zucchini
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 cups gluten-free flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Beat the eggs, add sugar, vanilla, and butter. Mix in zucchini. Add in dry ingredients and mix well. Turn into two greased loaf pans, divided equally. Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 – 60 minutes, until done. Insert a toothpick or knife into the center. When it comes out clean, the bread is done.

I used one metal loaf pan on the bottom rack and one glass loaf pan on the upper rack. The metal pan was done in 45 minutes and the glass pan took 60 minutes. I wish I had added pepitas to this. It’s really delicious, though.

A Plethora of Pickles: A YOP Update

I was a little under the weather this week, so didn’t blog. I didn’t even knit for two days! But yesterday, I caught up on my mystery knit along. Ready to start Clue 3!

I also cast on the Cemetery Cowl (Ravelry link) for a little impromptu knit along. It’s Halloween in July! Also, I sewed myself a Halloween treat/project bag.

I had to rip out the cowl and re-cast on because I twisted my stitches, of course. I was really careful so I don’t know how I manage to do that almost every time I join to knit in the round. The yarn is BFL Mohair Fingering from Forest Lane Fiber Co in Pitch and October. I also recently purchased an Apothecary Collection, and I love everything!

Especially this tiny skull planter from Ice and Dust Pottery, which I planted with a tiny coffee tree.

The garden is overflowing with cucumbers. I’ve canned five quart jars of pickles, and we have one quart jar plus a bucket of refrigerator pickles. Yes, a bucket. I went into the garden this morning and came out with enough for three more quart jars, so I ordered some that I will pick up later. I will also have to stop off for some dill because there wasn’t any at the farmers’ market yesterday and I used all my garden dill. It’s a good thing we love pickles!

I researched what might be going on with my zucchini plants, and learned that too much nitrogen + too much moisture = over growth of foliage and calcium uptake deficiency. The remedy? Plant Tums in the ground around the plant. I did it, and now we are getting zucchini! One got away from me (it’s very large) so I’m planning to make zucchini bread this afternoon.

This has been a Year of Projects Update. You can learn more about the group on Ravelry. You can read my updated list of projects here.

Here’s one that hearkens back to my youth:

Saturday Harvest

I went into the garden to check on the plants, and found so many cucumbers! I was excited. I made pickles.

Refrigerator Pickles
Canned Pickles

We still have a few fresh for eating, and I’m sure there will be more.

I made a new friend today.

My orchid is still blooming!

May 9
June 26

I never thought I would be able to keep an orchid alive, but this one’s been going since April 2019.

Friday FOs

After complaining that I hadn’t done any sewing last Sunday, I decided to finish up these linen Emerson Shorts. They were cut out. I only had to sew them together. They came out really nice, and they are super comfortable.

I finished up Bob’s Pride socks!

This photo shows the colors better.

I made a “make do” drying rack with netting and a frame, and am drying calendula flowers to steep in oil.

Have you finished any creative projects this week?

My volunteer sunflowers have been taking a beating, thanks to heavy rains and critters knocking them over. So I cut the stems for a bouquet. They look lovely in my raku vase from The Alchemist’s Studio.