A Week or Two in Pictures (3/27-4/10)

I’m starting this post out with a picture of my lovely girls enjoying a treat block. That block sure didn’t last long but we had fun watching them attack it! I like to give them a treat every now and then. Usually we just let them feast on the scraps we throw out from our chicken (ends of cucumber, carrot peels, etc) in addition to the layer pellets/corn we toss out.

P1050093

I planted an Ichiban eggplant in my garden bed. I love eggplant though and hope to pick up at least another variety to add to my bed. A great way to use up eggplant is to make Baba Ghanoush – it is delicious!

P1050109.JPG

My pineberries are looking good in my garden bed. Thankfully the recent burst of cold weather did not phase them as I see little berries forming! I’m awaiting on some Old North Sea strawberry plants to arrive from Baker Creek seeds any day.

P1050112

We potted up a bunch of plants for the front porch. One contains herbs I started last year (lemongrass, chives, thyme, parsley), one contains violas, two contain a mixture of Rainbow Chard and Brussels Sprouts. There’s a rosemary lurking in the back (along with my Belle watching me from inside the house, she’s never far from me). The red pot and the pot in the middle contain shallots that I got from my grandfather’s house – apparently they’ve been passed down for a few generations!

P1050116

On these pretty evenings, we’ve been working with the dogs a lot more than usual. It helps Belle run off some energy and it helps Jake (Robb’s dog) stay in shape for when duck hunting season rolls around.
P1050209

The peach tree (located within our chicken coop) is doing fabulous. I’m glad that the cold weather didn’t damage it either. I love a fresh, juicy peach picked while still warm from the sun.

P1050155

My comfrey is rocking it! I like to use it in products that I make for The Southern Belle’s Garden. In fact, most of the herbs I use I actually grow myself.

P1050178.JPG

We went for a walk on Sunday. Robb wanted to check on a couple of potential turkey hunting spots. Though he really didn’t see what he was looking for, we did spook up a couple of deer and I found my first ever shed antler! Okay, so really Robb found it but only because he was walking in front of me!

P1050142

All in all, it’s been a good couple of weeks! The next few weeks will fly by though and I don’t know how many pictures I’ll be able to snag! I enjoy letting you all have these little peeks into my life (plus it helps me remember to jot down information in my garden journal) and I hope you enjoy them as well!

A Pi Day Recipe: Berry Crumb Pie

It’s Pi day! Get it? March 14 – 3.14? No? Hmm.

Moving on. Pie is one of my boyfriend’s favorite desserts so what better way to celebrate Pi day than to bake him a pie? Regardless of what he might say, I am not good at making pies and often wonder why his favorite dessert couldn’t be something like brownies – a dish that I can knock out of the park.

But being that I love him, this is the 3rd pie that I’ve made for 2017. The first was a lovely berry pie with blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries. The second was a lemon meringue pie (using fresh meyer lemons) that nearly kicked my butt.

That lemon meringue pie was a mess. My meringue fell, twice, because I got distracted when I dumped out half of my pie as I tried to readjust it in the oven (note to self: always place your pie on top of a baking sheet). I threw a hissy fit, threatened to the pie in the trash, but still continued to cook it. I never tried the pie but Robb said it was delicious.

I went simple with this pie. I have a freezer full of frozen fruit that I need to start utilizing so I decided to make him another berry pie (which I think is his favorite kind of pie) with a crumb topping. I ended up going with a mixture of red currents, strawberries, and blueberries.

IMG_0896

Berry Crumb Pie

  • 1 (9 inch) unbaked pie shell

Filling

  • 4 cups of thawed berries (drain off some of the juice)
  • ¾ cup sugar (I used Florida Crystals Organic Pure Cane Sugar)
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Pinch of salt

Topping

  • ⅔ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¾ cup rolled oats
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 6 tablespoon butter, cut into 1/4″ cubes
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine your fruit with granulated sugar, flour, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Pour into pie shell.
  2. Combine brown sugar, rolled oats, all-purpose flour, cinnamon, and butter until crumbly Spread the topping evenly over the pie filling.
  3. Place on foil-lined baking sheet in lower third of oven. Bake until fruit bubbles and crust browns, approximately 1 hour. If topping begins to brown too quickly, tent with foil. Let cool.

Did you celebrate Pi day?

Weekly Garden and Harvest Update 5/02-5/07 (+ Recipe!)

Mom killed our first snake of the season yesterday (hiding in our raised strawberry bed), which means that my time outdoors has come to an end #kidding #notreally #hatesnakes. Anyway, we harvested our first strawberry of the season on Monday, from our old beds, which are about 3-4 years old. We actually needed to pull up those plants last year, especially since we have the everbearing strawberry boxes, but haven’t done so yet. So mom and I split that strawberry, disappointed that it wasn’t as sweet or juicy as expected. Maybe I can make a jam out of those?

Finally used the asparagus in some way other than just grilling them! My Quiche recipe is below.

Harvested:
– 19 stalks of asparagus

– 1 strawberry

– A sprig or two of chives

Our first (of many I hope) strawberry of the season.
Our first (of many I hope) strawberry of the season.

This was my first attempt at creating a Quiche and even my mom deemed it delicious. What I love about Quiche is that you can put almost anything in it and it will still end up tasting delicious! Here is what I did.

Mmm!
Mmm!

Ham, Asparagus, and Chive Blossom Quiche

  • 1 unbaked 9″ frozen pie shell
  • 1/3 c. fresh asparagus, trimmed to 1″ pieces
  • 1/4 c. cooked ham
  • 1 tbsp. chives/chive blossom petals
  • 1 1/4 c. mixed cheddar cheese (I used Kraft Triple Cheddar)
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 c. half and half
  • dash of salt & pepper
  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil and blanch the asparagus for 2 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water.
  2. In a bowl, mix together the eggs, cream, cheese, salt and pepper.
  3. Spread the asparagus, ham, and chives in pie shell and top with egg mixture. I sprinkled a little extra bit of chive blossoms on the top.
  4. Bake at 425*F for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350*F and bake 35 additional minutes. I covered the crust with tinfoil to keep it from burning. Let cool for about 5 minutes and serve!
Another gorgeous Sunday, perfect for playing croquet and grilling out!
Another gorgeous Sunday, perfect for playing croquet and grilling out!
My little pomegranate tree has come a long way since the plain stick it was earlier in the season.
My little pomegranate tree has come a long way from the stick it was earlier in the season.
Everything is looking good!
Everything is looking good!
The newest addition to my fairy garden - she is deep in thought.
The newest addition to my fairy garden – she is deep in thought.
One of my favorite corners of the porch. The fountain has blue food coloring to deepen the color.
One of my favorite corners of the porch. The fountain has blue food coloring to deepen the color.
The blueberries are getting bigger!
The blueberries are getting bigger!