Sunday, August 28, 2011

Tomatoes,Tomatoes and more Tomatoes...

I have been blessed this year with an abundance of tomatoes. I have made all the classic tomato combinations, so I decided to explore as many different recipes using my valuable edible resource. So far, there have been two that were big hits!

The first one was so easy and made such a great use of all the varieties of cherry tomatoes that I have been growing. The best result of this recipe was the next day I took the whole shebang and turned it into a tasty sauce for my Spaghetti Squash.

Thanks so Jamie Oliver for this great recipe that allowed me to double dip!

4 1/4 lbs ripe cherry tomatoes, mixed colors are great!
2 sprigs each fresh thyme, rosemary and bay.
1 Tablespoon dried oregano
3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
12 good quality course Italian Sausage
Extra-virgin Olive Oil
Balsamic vinegar
Sea Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place the tomatoes in a single snug layer in a roasting pan. Top with all the herbs then drizzle with the olive oil and vinegar. Turn this to make sure the tomatoes are covered. Lay the sausages on top and then roast for half hour. Give the tomatoes a shake and turn the sausages over. Put back into the oven for additional 30 minutes.

I served this with a green salad, fresh bread, and a glass or two of a good wine!!

I'll share the next recipe, after I go weed is such a nice cool day, Irene is being kind to us, but my heart felt concern for all in her path.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Shade Garden Sunday

On a recent sweltering Sunday, I decided it was time to focus
any outdoor efforts to the Shade. I have three Chimney Pots from England that are temporarily gracing their presence in my Shade/Native Garden. They have inspired me to pull this wonderful space together. I love the Hellebores/Ferns/Hostas/ Hydrangeas/Toad Lillies/ and many unusual wonderful shade lovers that grace this garden with their interesting foliage and sparks of bloom color. I mulched this area with Pine Straw which just seems to show off the "shadies"while adding some acidity as well. I am compiling a list of all the different varieties of plants in the is a garden, which at this point numbers over 30! Who every said Shade Gardens are boring has not seen mine!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Athens Farmers Market

Saturday morning my daughter and I journeyed to the Athens Farmer's Market. It was by far the most beautiful Farmer's Market I have seen. All the booths were artistically layed out. I was mesmerized by the vegetables and fruits all looking so tempting.

What a gift to communities to have Farmers' Markets. It is a great way to spend a Saturday morning.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Wild Trip with Wildflowers!

Today I am in Athens Georgia, visiting my Daughter and Son-in-Law. What was suppose to be a very simple 7 hour drive down turned out to be a "wild" drive. One wrong turn and I ended up going through Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, and South Carolina and finally Georgia.

Feeling very frustrated, not only with myself but Mr. Garmin as well..I finally got onto the right track only to be rewarded with views of the most glorious Wildflower Beds along the highways.

It turns out that North Carolina has a Wildflower Program. It is sponsored by the North Carolina Department of Transportation. Look it up!

It helped my trip down to Athens become a blooming success!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Basil Oil

Little did I know what a wonderful impact this Oil could make on simple foods. I made it as a dressing for a Watermelon/Tomato salad. From that humble beginning, its uses have grown! Tonight I made a tomato/green bean/onion/sauce(basically just using anything from the garden that needed to be used). I added some ground lean beef for my meat loving husband, and we put it on top of whole wheat pasta. I was snacking on the pasta and added some of the Basil Oil on it just for fun. popped!!

So then I just sliced some Heirloom Tomatoes from the garden and sprinkle them with a little salt and pepper and drizzled them with the Basil Oil. Then grated some fresh parm cheese on them...and added some "pickings" of basil. wonderful1!!

*Recipe for Basil Oil

Put 2 Cups fresh basil into a pot of boiling water for 1 minute. Put into an ice bath to stop the cooking. Let it drain completely. Put into the food processor and add one cup and a half of good olive olive oil.

Puree until smooth. Strain mixture through a cheesecloth lined fine sieve and seep over a bowl. Let stand for about an squeezing allowed.

Then this liquid gold is yours for the eating!!! Enjoy!

*Recipe loving adapted from a Martha Stewart Recipe.

Monday, August 8, 2011

So .....this has been a crazy year. I have been so overwhelmed with "life", I have not been able to blog. That being said, I am so ready to jump into a new phase of blogging. I am going to connect my love of Garden Antiques and Traveling into my love of Herbs and Gardens. I am going to have a new online store of my special "things" as well. Plus blogging about this property and trying to weave it into my dream. It is part of Squire Boone's original farm, he followed his dream of moving west with his brother I must do the same.

This has always been my dream to develop this amazing property into what it was meant to be. I hope you will follow me...who knows where this will take us, but at 58 it is time to get going!!

**This picture is of "Yard Long Beans" from my Potager Garden.( See the Long and Short Connection???)


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