Saturday, October 31, 2009

Pumpkin Carving

how do you like our four pumpkins? :o)

Monday, October 26, 2009

Simple Things that make me Happy #4


a giant leaf pile after a 45 minute out-door work out on a sunny fall day!  (seeing the backyard COVERED in leaves the next morning: not so much. hahaha!)

Friday, October 23, 2009

Peek-a-Boo!


I so wish that his laughing was louder than Momma's annoying voice! hahaha... It would also be nice if I could zoom and crop video like you can with a photo. Sorry for the super poor quality!! However, too funny not to post. (At least to me, anyway!)
this went on for several minutes BEFORE I got the camera, and after I turned it off. What a character!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

CSA harvest Box: week 17 part 2 and week 18 (THE END!)

let me start off by saying that I switched to the "new" blogger editor
and I am SO not impressed.  What the heck??  What's happening with my typing? Ahhh!!

okay, now that I've got THAT off my chest...

I roasted my peppers, finally!  Look at all of them... wow.... shiney, oil-slicked peppers....The instructions I found on the net said to put them on your highest oven rack.  I thought the bell pepper was going to catch on fire.  The oil did actually ignite a couple of times.  Not for the faint at heart!  After they were all roasty-toasty, I put them in a covered bowl to sweat for a while, and the the skin all but fell off.  I sliced 'em up and popped 'em in the freezer for another day!  Nice that I have a whole quart-size zipper bag FULL of roasted peppers to throw into soups, sauces, and anything bland this coming winter.

Thought you might like a picture of the spaghetti squash!  Er, the "sripetti" squash- the spaghetti/delicata  squash hybrid from last week.  After roasting, I scooped out the "noodles" (I think I undercooked it due to running out of time...) and tossed them with butter, nutmeg, and parmesan.  Quite tastey next to broiled salmon!

Okay- the final week, here's what we found in our big green bags!:
really yummy jonagold apples (we are SO going to miss farm fresh organic apples!) another sripetti squash, 2 delicata squash, some decorative gourds and indian corn, dried pintos, sugar pie pumpkin, beets, onion.  We also picked up this crazy squash just for fun.  I'll let you know in the coming months what it's like when we roast it!  It's about as round as a dinner plate, and maybe around 6" tall?  Not a HUGE winter squash, but a might big one :o) Fun!

we'll miss you, Farmer's Market & CSA box!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pumpkin Patch


Can you believe it's that time of year? We made our first trip to the Pumpkin Patch with Rowen a little bit ago. He really enjoyed climbing on the pumpkins, pounding them like drums, and trying to lift each and every one. (I think because we told him you can only take home the one you can carry- haha!)




Of course, pushing the cart full of pumpkins was also a blast...








...and going through the hay-maze with Daddy...

but the best part of the day was truly...



video
ducking under the flags with Nanna! Who would have figured?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Rowen's First Birthday!

Hey guys, it's me, Rowen. I want to tell you all about my first birthday! It was loads of fun. Thursday morning, my actual birthday, my two best girl buds came over to play for a little bit. Momma didn't get out the camera when Fiona was here, but she did get a shot of me and Riley playing with my wagon.
Since I have so many people who love me, I had a lot of celebrating all week! On Tuesday, I went to G-ma's house. I tried my hand at opening presents, and it was pretty fun.

Then I got to try cake. Well, everyone wanted me to try cake. I refused. Plop.

Thursday evening, I went to Nanna & Pop-pop's house to do birthday again. Here's me and Momma for the half second I kept this dumb hat on.

And then they tried the cake again! I already told them I wasn't impressed. Silly grown ups and their traditions. Here's me, not impressed:

Dad seemed to like it, so I fed him handfuls of the pure maple-syrup sweetened whipped cream.

Dad tried to feed me in return. NO thank you.

I don't have any words yet, so I told them how I felt the only way I knew how. Plop.

Ooh, present time!



Day three of celebrating, Sunday was my birthday party! It was supposed to be LAST Sunday, but I was sick. So my parents rescheduled it. Silly grown-ups.
Here I am lookin' fly in my monkey hat:
My buddy Ems her monkey hat:
my buddy JJ in his monkey hat:

Tower of cupcakes with my birthday cake on top. (Seriously? They're trying AGAIN with the birthday cake??) My parents set up the video camera for my cake time, thinking third times a charm. No still pictures, sorry. But of course, I told them again how I felt about cake by refusing to touch it and flipping the plate over. Plop.

I love monkeys. Well, my little stuffed Monkey in particular. So my folks decided I would like a monkey theemed birthday party. Did you know you can't find monkey party stuff anywhere? Jungle stuff, sure, curious george, sure. But no monkey. So Momma-the-Dork made a monkey stamp out of a potato and made me my own monkey party stuff. ... I love monkeys. (and my Momma)


CSA harvest Box: week 16 part 2 and week 17 part 1

I used some of the peppers from last week when I made pasta primavera. They played such a small roll I normally wouldn't post about it, but I had to share with you a yummy healthy trick I just tried! Matt and I are watching "the biggest looser" this season and in one episode they mentioned you could replace half of your pasta with zucchini. I'd been dying to try it since. It was SO good! If you wanted to "hide" the zucchini, you could probably peel it first, but we like zucchini so I just sliced it into small strips and tossed it in with the pasta for the last minute it was boiling. (I mean, if you boil your pasta for 10 minutes, you toss in the zucchini after 9 minutes and drain it all together at 10.) Seriously, it was awesome. We are so doing this again. (My pasta primavera also had mushrooms, asparagus, and peas. From (gasp!) Winco and we tossed in some left-over cooked chicken at the end.)

Pasta Primavera (to the best I can recall!)
olive oil
1 # asparagus, ends snapped off, cut into 1" pieces
2 zucchinis, sliced like strands of pasta
4 crimini mushrooms, sliced
1 handful frozen peas
2 cloves garlic, minced
sweet red pepper, minced
salt & pepper, red pepper flakes
1 can diced tomatoes
1/2 C milk
1/2 # pasta
1/4 C fresh basil, minced
juice from one lemon
chopped cooked chicken (about a cup)
grated Parmesan

- boil salted water for pasta
- spray a saute pan with olive oil spray and heat over medium-high. Saute asparagus, mushrooms, red pepper, garlic, and spices until crisp tender. (If you're not used to cooking veggies this way, you may want to saute them one type at a time so nothing gets over-cooked. Or if your pan is too small for them all!)
-transfer veggies to a bowl
-add can of tomatoes & juice to empty pan until they thicken up a bit. Probably about 5 minutes. Stir in milk and simmer until thickened up a bit again. Probably about 5 minutes again. Stir in fresh basil. (if using dried, add it when cooking the veggies instead).
-when the water is boiling, add pasta and cook 8 minutes. Add the zucchini to the pot, boil one more minute, and drain all together. Make sure to save about 1/2 C cooking water.
-stir the pasta, sauce, veggies, and chicken all together. If it seems dry, add a little of the pasta water until it seems right. If you don't care about the calories, stir in some butter. Mmmmm. Season further with salt and pepper if needed, and top with Parmesan.


Stuffed Eggplant! I scooped out the flesh and cooked it with white wine, fresh basil, onion, garlic, mushrooms, shrimp, red pepper, and home-make whole-wheat bread crumbs. Sprinkled with Parmesan and baked it. If I wound up with another eggplant, I'd make it again. I'm just not a fan of eggplant, I guess.


Week 17 of 18! Beets, sugar pie pumpkin, 2 acorn squash, pears, onion, sweet potatoes, peppers, and dried beans. We made a batch of curry rice & kidney beans this week with the dried beans, but everything else is still untouched! I guess it is only Wednesday. And I'm about to go roast the peppers right now. (Hurry, before Rowen wakes up!)

Free-Standing


My little sugar-pumpkin has been standing up all by himself without any help or support. Isn't he so big? hehehe

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

CSA harvest Box: weeks 14, 15, and 16

Week 14: cherry tomatoes, sweet corn, red potatoes, candy onion, gala apples, sweet peppers, hot peppers, Italian parsley, fresh garbanzo beans, and tomatoes.

The garbanzo beans are yummy but I'm not sure they're worth the effort on round two! This time I steamed them and made another batch of hummus, which was pretty yummy. Particularly on a ham and Swiss sandwich, replacing the mayo. Yum! I had a few tomatoes from our garden, so I canned them along with these, since Matt's not a big fan of fresh tomatoes and I just can't eat that many! They are so sweet and juicy though- it was kind of a shame to cook them all! But it will be so nice to pop open that jar when the fresh summer tomatoes are a thing of the past...
with the weather chilling up, I made garlic mashed potatoes out of the baby reds we got this week. Mmmm. Still not as good as the grilled potatoes and leeks from weeks past, but it's hard to beat mashed potatoes!
I'm still not a big fan of honey-dew. The cantaloupes from the farm were to die for, so I had my hopes up for this little green-fleshed melon... but I pretty much fed the whole thing to Rowen. he liked it! The apples, on the other hand, are the best. THE BEST. We gobbled them up in no time. So sweet, crisp, juicy... just perfect. We were sad to have to eat a store-bought apple when they were gone!
I still haven't used the peppers or the parsley, which I'm sure is quite brown & mushy by now. I heard that parsley dries up breast milk so I've been wary to use it every time we get it! I guess I should have frozen it for later... oh well.



Week 15:
sweet corn, melons, cucumber, gala apples, beets, potatoes, hot peppers, and a sweet onion. Oh, yeah, and a Sugar Pie pumpkin!


I'm holding on to the pumpkin for pumpkin pie season! It's in the garage where it'll stay nice and cool and hopefully keep for a month. I pickled the little cucumbers (batch two!) and roasted the beats- which are not only one of Rowen's favorite things to eat, but to paint with as well!I baked the potatoes this week, which was rather blah... I think I'll stick with russets for baking since they get so nice and fluffy. The honey-dew again went to Rowen (who enjoyed it very much) and I put half a hot pepper in our black beans the other night. It seemed pretty spicy raw, but after cooking I couldn't hardly taste it. Guess I shouldn't be so timid!




Week 16:a sugar pie pumpkin, Stripetti Spaghetti squash, Candy Sweet onion, a fruit of our choice, hot peppers (Anaheim or Hot Banana), carrots, cucumber, and tomatoes or eggplant.

In our email from the farm this week:
"Pumpkin shortage? That is what the news headline said. ... Sure enough, the wet, cold weather suffered by the northeast (where the majority of all canned pumpkin is produced) this past summer ... took its toll on pie pumpkins. ... According to news sources, the squash that is generally grown for canned pumpkin pie filling was a total loss, and the only canned pumpkin left for holiday baking is left from last season and in short supply. I noticed over the weekend that there is still canned pumpkin here locally, but shelves on the east coast are empty and folks are panicking!"

crazy!! Well, in that case, I'm saving BOTH my pumpkins! They are so cute, I may put them on the front porch instead of in the garage where I'm sure they'll keep equally well until it starts freezing at night. Well, on second thought, I don't want to risk loosing my pumpkins. In the garage they'll stay.

Normally I don't post the week's box until I've used what was in it, but "normally" these days is taking a month to post anything at all, so here's what I'm PLANNING on doing, I'll let you know how it goes!
I'm super excited to use the stripetti squash. You just roast it, scoop out the "noodles" and top with some sort of sauce- butter and Parmesan is a favorite, but I may go for something healthier. Matt and I are feelin' the extra weight these days and are going to start eating better- and squash to replace pasta is a great start!
I put the pears, unripe, in the garage with the pumpkins. It will be nice to save them a while until they ripen up. We were bummed they weren't more apples, but pears will do! I might make baba ganoush (pardon the spelling... no clue.) out of the eggplant. Not sure there yet.
and oh no... more peppers. I have SO MANY PEPPERS!! Should I roast them in the oven? Hm.... it's a thought...