Category Archives: recipes

Eating Daylily Buds Hemerocallis fulva

I’ve known for a long time that you could eat daylily buds but just never tried them. I’m so glad I finally did.

I sautéed them in a frying pan with some butter and added a bit of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. They were delicious served over whole wheat vermicelli! They tasted like a cross between asparagus and zucchini.

Pick the buds when they are no bigger than about two inches long. Large pods can be bitter so I’ve read.

Add some flower petals (which are also edible) as a garnish.

Fabulous Chocolate Stuffed Strawberries

One of my Mother’s day treats was a combination that I love: chocolate and fresh strawberries. My older daughter invented these chocolate filled strawberries. We all agreed that they were just as good as chocolate dipped strawberries but were easier to make. We also liked the fact that the lard was left out of the chocolate dipping sauce. Presumably the lard helps the chocolate form a firm layer on the outside of the strawberries. Why bother with all that when you could just stuff the center. Clever girl!

Works best with large strawberries.

These are the chocolate filled strawberries that my daughter made for me- minus all the ones we already eat.

Absolutely delicious!

Don’t forget the fresh whipped cream.

Delicious Home-made Chicken Soup Made With Locally Raised, Free Range Chicken

bowl of chicken soup

We’ve been raising chickens for about 4 years now. They are truly charming and we love them. However, roosters can cause problems. First of all, although often very pretty, you can’t keep very many. It is suggested that you have one rooster to 25 hens. We therefore, only need to keep around one and only if we want fertilized eggs for hatching baby chicks. You don’t need a rooster at all to get eggs by the way. Fertilized and unfertilized eggs are indistinguishable in taste. Second, if you hatch out chicks (on average half are male), when they become “teenagers” they start to fight. In addition, if there aren’t enough hens, the rooster(s) can hurt the hen’s back from too much mating. This can lead to complete feather loss on their backs and even large cuts from the rooster’s claws and spurs. Third, not always but sometimes you will have an over aggressive rooster and they will attack you or worse your kids. For these reasons, we on occasion have locally raised chicken for dinner.

If you want to know that the chicken that you eat is humanly raised; raise them yourself. Our chickens have a very large area in which to range, peck, and scratch around like chickens. This area is fenced however, to keep away stray dogs or a marauding fox.Furthermore, I can make sure they have a healthy diet. So, why not enjoy chicken soup on occasion and have your own supply of superior eggs.

I always make a soup out of the leftovers and my family loves it.

cup of chicken soup
Soup:
I bake the chicken in my cast iron French oven (Dutch oven) made by Le Creuset. After the first dinner, I pick off any meat that is quick and easy to remove. Then I add enough water to cover the chicken bones. I also add a large onion (cut up in large chunks), a bay leaf or two, some fresh thyme from my garden, a few stocks of celery if I have any, and simmer it on the stove with the cover on but not completely closed for an hour or more. I then remove the carcass to anther container. If I’m making the soup right away, I scoop the droopy onion and celery out of the broth. Then I add some veggies- like chopped carrots, peas, corn… and a starch (brown rice, barley, or noodles). While that stuff is simmering on the stove in the same French oven, I pick all the meat off the bones. When the Veggies (and rice) are cooked, I add the chicken meat. I used to always shy away from dark meat but not anymore. Season with salt and pepper or leave out the salt and put in a bouillon cube instead.
I have an old fashion kind of cooking style. It’s the kind where you use up things that you have on hand, I don’t measure (well maybe when baking), and I make things to taste (shouldn’t we all?).

pot of chicken soup
I make soup like my dad; thick with lots of stuff.

DIY Pear Chips: A Delicious Way To Preserve Home-grown Pears

I made these from the pears growing in my yard.

When we moved into our house, we were lucky to find that the previous owners had planted a pear tree. But what to do with all the pears? -dehydrate! I love these dried pear chips. I think they taste even better as chips: probably because the flavor concentrates when dried. The nice thing about dried fruit is that it is very portable. Also, they are a healthy snack to give the kids.

How to: cut off the top and bottom of the pear and thinly slice. No need to peel. You can dry the slices in a food dehydrator but I don’t have one yet. I lay out the fruit in a single layer on cookie sheets and put the trays in the oven set very low. It should heat the air but not cook them. Store the dried chips in a covered container. They don’t need to be stored in the fridge but I often do because they last longer.

The purpose of this post is to inspire you to make some of these tasty treats yourself.

Blueberry Crisp Made From Locally Grown Blueberries; From Our Backyard

summer

Glorious blueberries!

We were very excited this year when we finally had enough blueberries from our bushes (at one time) to make a blueberry crisp. I’ve been waiting many years for our bushes to get big. In the past at best we would get handfuls per day. I can’t wait until next year when I hope to have all we can eat with many more to freeze besides. That last sentence reminds me of one of my most favorite children’s books, Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey. You might want to check it out.

If you haven’t tried it, try freezing some blueberries. We call them popsicle berries: for a cool treat pop one or two in your mouth. Delightful! My kids beg for more.

Go ahead, plant some blueberry bushes is your yard and invest in your future.

Blueberry Pickers

I was going to get a picture of the crisp when it was fresh out of the oven but it was gone so fast I missed my chance. I enjoyed this dessert even more because I knew that the berries came from our back yard.

BLUEBERRY CRISP

Blueberries- enough to fill the pie crust, ¼ cup organic sugar, and 2 Tbs. cornstarch then 1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice (Sugar, cornstarch and lemon are optional.) I usually skip the extras here.
Combine (with a pastry blender) 1 cup organic unbleached flour, ¾ cups organic oats, ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon, ½ cup packed organic brown sugar and ½ cup (1 stick) cold organic butter.
Tend your blueberry bushes all spring and in the summer when they become dotted with flavorful blue dots, go out in the yard and pick enough blueberries to fill the pie pan. Bring them inside, wash and remove any stems. Preheat oven to 375 decrees F. If it is important to you to thicken the blueberry juice and add even more sweetness, stir granulated sugar and cornstarch and then lemon juice with the blueberries. Put the blueberries or blueberry mixture into a pie pan.
I use a hand-crafted-in-Vermont pottery pie pan given to me by my father early in my marriage.


In a bowl, combine flour, oats, brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon. Combine ingredients with a pastry blender, two forks, or your fingers, mix until coarse crumbs form. Top your blueberries.
You will want to put a cookie sheet underneath the pie pan. Bake crisp 35 to 40 minutes or until it looks good. The fruit should be bubbly. Cool slightly and serve with vanilla ice cream.