Tag Archives: garden

(Not quite) Wordless Wednesday.

It’s early June, and where I live that means the garden is starting to deliver on the hopes from early Spring.

Here are a few shots of my garden, an extra planter where we’re growing some greens and oregano, and some of the bounty we’ve harvested already. I’ve got a veggie garden with two kinds of tomatoes, jalopeno and poblano peppers, green beans, three kinds of lettuce, spinach, and red potatoes (growing under the lettuce). In the planter there is red leaf lettuce, radicchio, and oregano. There’s also a separate herb garden that includes some strawberry plants. Some of this, as you can see, has been harvested and eaten already. Included in the photos is Boomer the Dog who, like all the other dogs who have ever lived with us, absolutely loves green beans.

So far, everything is growing well. But something keeps eating my squash blooms! They’re in a separate garden not pictured here. As soon as they get blooms, something comes along at night and eats them before they can grow anything edible. If you have any ideas what it might be and what I might be able to do about it, let me know. And please excuse the weeds you see, which I haven’t been able to trim/pull/Roundup yet.

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Happy Wednesday!
 
 
 

It’s No-D-Day again! Time for a recipe.

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The idea for No D Day comes from George Simmons of Ninjabetic fame. It’s his way to get us to focus on the parts of our lives that aren’t wrapped up in glucose checks, boluses and basals, and carb counting, if only for one day. Today, many of us will try to post something that doesn’t really relate to diabetes. And that’s the last time I’m going to mention that word today. Interested in writing your own Non-D piece? Once it’s complete, be sure to add your link HERE so everyone will see it.

Okay, on to the recipe…
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I love to cook. But I can’t take credit for this recipe. It’s an invention of my wife’s, and it doesn’t really have any measurements. So I can’t make it too easy for you. But it really is pretty simple.

First, start with some fresh cherry tomatoes. The fresher the better. The ones you see here came from my garden. If you’re getting the ones you see under plastic in the grocery store, you’ll probably have to work with them a bit to get the same consistency at the end.

You’ll want to roast the tomatoes. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place the tomatoes on a cookie sheet and cover them with olive oil, a little salt and pepper, and oregano. If you’re working with the grocery store tomatoes, take a sharp knife and put a little hole in each tomato so they’ll roast and release their juices little easier. After looking at the photo again, I think Maureen also sprinkled a little mozzarella cheese in there when I wasn’t looking.

Put them in the oven and let them roast for 15-20 minutes. Then take them out, toss them around with a spatula to make sure everything is mixed together well, and if you think they’re done, they’re done. If not, put them in for five more minutes and check again. Once the tomatoes are done, put them in a bowl (or something you can get them out of with a spoon) and chop some fresh basil on top. But be sure to get all of the goodness from the olive oil, the tomato juice, and everything else from the bottom of the cookie sheet into your container. At this point, it’s hard to keep your mitts off of everything. Your house will smell sooooo good.

For the presentation, we also toasted a rustic bread (bread, I know, right?– must remember: No D Day). With the oven still at 350 degrees, we coated the bread with olive oil and a light coating of celery salt and garlic powder. Then we put them in to toast. If you don’t want the bread, just find something that will work for you. Even rice cakes would be okay here. If you have to live with celiac (still no D-word… crafty, eh?), I’m thinking the Udi’s bread would be great with this.

Once complete, we served it up with some goat cheese. So imagine a layer of goat cheese underneath the tart, almost sweet taste of roasted cherry tomatoes. In our house, this was a recipe that will go down in history.
 
 
 

Recipe! Spring Goodness.

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Living on (or near) the east coast of the USA, you might get the impression that the environment around here is just a big concrete jungle. So I hope the photos above, from near Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, of the peonies from The Great Spousal Unit’s garden, and the salad made from lettuce out of our vegetable garden, help to prove to you that not everything is paved over here.

In our little neighborhood, Spring is the magical season. When all of the azaleas finally bloom, the oak trees green up, and the homeowners looking to sell put the For Sale signs out on their lawns. I start the vegetable garden sometime in April, depending on when I feel like it won’t freeze anymore. I cheat a little, in that I purchase plants at the nursery rather than start the veg from seed.

The lettuce is always ready first. We’re just about finished with the 10 heads of lettuce we planted this Spring, but we still have some spinach that will keep going for a while. That’s a lot of salad. But when it’s this fresh, you start to feel like you could eat salad for breakfast as well as for lunch and dinner. Once the lettuce is totally finished, I’ll pull up the plants and replace the lettuce with red skin potatoes, which will take longer but can handle the hot Summer sun a lot better.

Eating out of the garden helps you to understand how good, how fresh this whole farm-to-table thing really is. If you’ve got a little space, I can tell you from about 20 years of experience that growing your own fruits, vegetables, and herbs is absolutely worth it. Even before we bought our house, we were growing tomatoes and peppers on the balconies of the apartments we lived in. If you’re interested in trying to garden, my only advice is to pick something that’s easy, give it plenty of sun, and enough water. That’s about all it takes.

So about the recipe… this is just a simple salad that includes all of the stuff that I like to put on a salad. Your Appetite May Vary (YAMV). We paired the salad with a veggie burger on a potato roll, with a little Frisch’s Tartar Sauce and pickles. The juice in the photo was because my BG was low before dinner and the only carbs in the meal were in the salad dressing, tartar sauce, tomato, and the potato roll.

So we started the salad with romaine and red leaf lettuce from the garden. We also threw in some of our fresh spinach, and a little fresh basil from the garden… unconventional, but who cares? Then I chopped up a spring onion that I got from a farmer’s stand nearby and threw that in. We added some sunflower seeds (which I’m completely addicted to), and chopped up some olives and added them too. After adding a fat slice of tomato on top of my burger, I chopped up the rest (it was a small tomato). Finally, we sprinkled some shredded cheddar on top. We enjoyed it with about 2 tablespoons of Ken’s Lite Caesar dressing.

Total Carb Count: 68 grams
2 grams from the dressing, 3 grams from the tartar sauce, 3 grams from the tomato, 31 grams from the potato roll, and 29 grams from the orange juice.

The best part about this delicious meal is that it’s only one of several like it that we’ll enjoy all summer long, with different ingredients as they ripen throughout the growing season. I hope you’ve got a good garden of your own, and if not, I hope you find a local farmer that can help you bring the bounty of locally grown produce to your table this summer.
 
 
 

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