Recipe Tuesday – Borage

Borage

Looking for another way to use those Borage flowers, then try using them in a Moist Method potpourri.

1 cup partly dried marigold petals
1 cup partly dried bergamot flowers
1 cup partly dried marjoram flowers, stripped from the stalk
1 cup partly dried lemongrass leaves, finely chopped
1 cup partly dried lemon verbena leaves
1 cup partly dried borage flowers
3 cups fine salt
1 tablespoon anise seeds
1 tablespoon fennel seeds
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon dried orris root powder
5-6 drops essential oil

Making a potpourri using the moist method, partially dry the leaves and petals and layer them with salt in a covered container.  Leave them for two weeks.  Break up the block that has formed, add spices, orris root powder and a essential oil.  Stir well, then cover and let sit for six weeks, stirring every day.  In a wide-necked container mix the developing potpourri with your fingers.

Lord bless you and keep you.

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Recipe Tuesday – Anise

Anise

Now that we have our Anise growing, it is time to figure out what to do with it.

Here is a video I found on YouTube talking about how Anise is good to lower Cholesterol.  I don’t know anything about the medicinal values of herbs yet, but I like to share information with others.  So feel free to comment in the comment section about what you have discovered about Anise.  Video is here.

If you are interested in making a Anise tea for a cough simmer one teaspoon crushed anise seed and 1 tablespoon powdered licorice root in 3 cups water.  Let steep for 20 minutes.  Then pour over two teaspoons thyme leaves.  Cover and let steep another 10 minutes.  Then strain through a cheesecloth.  Drink one cup that is hot three or four times day.

What are some ways you have used Anise?

Lord bless you and keep you.

Vegetable Thursday

Broccoli Waltham 29

My intentions were to post this yesterday but was not able to.

I thought Thursdays would be a good day to journal about each vegetable for my upcoming fall season.  Garden journals are so that we know what works and does not work from season to season.  Weather patterns change over the years from year to year.

Here is what I will be planting beginning Fall 2015 into 2016 or at least this the plan.

Broccoli, Waltham 29
Cabbage, Golden Acre
Cabbage, Red Acre
Cauliflower, Snowball
Carrots, Red-Cored Chantenay
Carrots, Scarlet Nantes
Cucumber, Marketmore 76
Herb, Arugula Rocket
Herb, Basil-Italian Large Leaf
Herb, Cilantro Slo-Bolting
Herb, Dill Bouquet
Kale, Red Russian
Leaf Lettuce, Black Seeded Simpson
Leaf Lettuce, Salad Bowl Red
Lettuce, Mesclun Mix
Lettuce, Romaine, Green-Parris Island Cos
Lettuce, Romaine, Red-Cimarron
Mustard, Mizuna (Kyona)
Onion, Evergreen Bunching Nebuka
Onion, Storage Bulbs-Red Grano
Onion, Storage Bulbs-Texas Early Grano
Radish, French Breakfast
Spinach, Bloomsdale
Tomato, Floradade
Watermelon, Black Diamond
Wheat, White Sonora (possibly?)

Beans, Bush-Blue Lake 274
Beans, Dry-Anasazi
Beans, Fava Broad Windsor
Beets, Early Wonder
Kale, Lacinato
Pea, Oregon Sugar Pod
Pea, Sugar Ann
Pepper, Hot-Early Jalapeno
Pepper, Semi-Hot-Anaheim
Pepper, Sweet-Cal Wonder 300 TMR
Radish, Easter Egg
Squash, Summer-Black Beauty Zucchini
Squash, Summer-Early Prolific Straightneck
Squash, Winter-Hubbard Blue
Squash, Winter-Vegetable Spaghetti
Squash, Winter-Waltham Butternut
Swiss Chard, Fordhook

These I will need to plant one per year in order to have enough space for them.
Corn, Flour/Pop-Chapalote
Corn, Flour/Pop-Chapalote Composite
Corn, Flour-Rio Grande Blue
Corn, Pop-Glass Gem
Corn, Roasting/Flour-Dia de San Juan
Corn, Sweet-Golden Bantan 8 Row
Corn, Sweet-Guarijio Red

Each Thursday I will be researching each individual seed in order to plan out the garden appropriately, so I will begin with just the cool weather crops.

May the Lord bless you and keep you!

Recipe Tuesday – Herbs (Part 2 of 2)

Herbs

Here are recipes using a combination of herbs.

Fines Herbes
Equal amounts of Chevril, Chives, Parsley and Tarragon

Bouquet Garni
3 stalks parsley, 1 bay leaf and 1 sprig of Thyme

Herbes De Provence
Equal amounts of Oregano, Rosemary, Thyme, Savory, Marjoram and French Lavender

Beef Mix
Equal amounts of Rosemary, Thyme, Savory, Orange peel and Parsley

Lamb Mix
Equal amounts of Rosemary, Thyme, Savory, Mint and Parsley

Poultry Mix
Equal amounts of Parsley, Thyme, Marjoram, Tarragon and Bay leaf

Seafood Mix
Equal amounts of Dill, Tarragon and Lemon peel

Lord bless you and keep you!

Herbs – Growing Dill

Dried Dill

Dill

Dill Seeds

Dill Seeds

Type of Plant – Hardy annual
Best Place – Full sun, sheltered from winds
Soil – Light, well-drained (A thick layer of sand, light clay and some stones)
Propagation – Seed
Parts of Plant – Leaves and seeds
Uses – Craft, culinary, medicinal, chickens, attract beneficial insects

Plant Dill from September through February. Plant every two weeks to have a harvest from November through April. It will bolt once the weather warms up.

Flowering Dill

Flowering Dill

Attracts beneficial pollinators such as Butterflies. Dill also attracts True bugs like, Assassin Bug, Big-eyed Bug and Minute Pirate Bug, predaceous insects like Trichogramma wasps and others that eat Mealy bugs, Mosquitoes, Scale insects, Spider Mites, Thripes and Whiteflies. Allow Dill to go to seed to attract beneficial insects.

Growing Dill

Growing Dill

Garden Planning – do not plant next to carrots

Companion Planting – It also helps corn produce bigger ears, enhances Broccoli’s flavor,

Culinary Uses – steam carrots and serve with butter and snipped Dill. Use seeds for strong fish and leaves on lighter varieties. Use chopped Dill in omelets. Make a Dill sauce for those meatballs. Make Dill-seed crackers. Use Dill to make those Dill pickles. Make Dill vinegar or oil.

Medicinal – Digestive problems, colic, flatulence (pour boiling water over 1 tsp crushed seeds)

Broccoli Investigation – Part 2

Arcadia Broccoli

My investigation began when I noticed the broccoli I was growing, Arcadia Broccoli, looked like cauliflower.  Then I wondered if it had been genetically altered in some way.  In order to grow a pure and clean Broccoli the temperatures must be between 50F to 73.4F.  If Broccoli is grown outside of these temperatures it is genetically modified in some way.  This is why I only grow broccoli in our fall and winter months.

Broccoli is in the top 10 crops of the United States with a market value of $700.  Top crops can be found here>>>>http://usda.mannlib.cornell.edu/MannUsda/viewDocumentInfo.do?documentID=1858.  The rising fuel prices make it unaffordable to grow in one part of our country and ship it to the other side of the country and still be affordable to the average consumer.  Yet, it is consumer demands that is driving this market due to the health benefits of broccoli.

Most of the Broccoli you see in the grocery stores appear to be Packman Broccoli.  Packman seed belongs to Seminis.  Monsanto owns Seminis.  I don’t mind hybrids, as long as, it is done in nature and not in a lab, injected with chemicals or crossed with another plant that would not normally cross in nature.  Most of the broccoli we see on the market today are a hybrid of some sort.

My first experience at growing broccoli was with one called ‘De Cicco’ Broccoli.  I noticed it did not not look like the huge broccoli heads in the grocery stores, but didn’t matter because I knew it was an heirloom seed that had not been tampered with in a lab.  This past fall we experimented with other varieties of broccoli.  We tried Spring Raab Broccoli which was just to bitter for us.  The Arcadia Broccoli developed nice big heads.  I’m still researching the Arcadia Broccoli because it is in the hybrid category.  Here is a link to most, but not all broccoli.  If it is labelled with “F1”, it is a hybrid.

My conclusion at this point is to stay away from all “F1” crops in our garden until I can determine how it was created.

Arcadia Broccoli

Arcadia Broccoli

Arcadia Broccoli

This is our Arcadia Broccoli that we planted Fall 2014.  Which is about 138 days after we planted the seed.  It is funny how climate, soil conditions, temperature and sun can determine the outcome of our vegetable harvests.

Today I wanted to know a little more about this variety of Broccoli.  It performed well and looked a little closer to what is purchased in the grocery stores.  I don’t mind hybrids, as long as, they are not crossing over into other vegetables, animals/pests or pesticides.  I began to think about this and wondered, “What is this variety crossed with?”  So my search has begun.