Preserving Tomatoes – 3 Ways

tomato sesame jamI did a lil’ chef demo at the Peachtree Farmers Market in Atlanta yesterday and man, o’ man, was it HOT. The market was hoppin’ despite the heat, and I did take a few moments to step away from my burner and cruise the farm stands. Bought some Tupelo honey for my neighbors (who are graciously watering plants in my absence – thank you!), ate a pineapple-mint ice pop, snacked on some wood-fired pizza and drank one of the most thirst-quenching teas I’ve ever had the pleasure of tasting. Continue reading

Where Have All the Bees Gone?

Have you heard about the bees? Are you paying attention to the bees? A few years back Colony Collapse Disorder was identified and got a bit of press, particularly in agriculture circles. Bees in the almond fields of California started disappearing. This affected the bottom line for the almond industry, and when money is on the table, people tend to take notice. Flash forward to today and all bees are under stress. I’ve just inherited a P-Patch on top of Queen Anne. I was so excited to see beehives onsite when I took my first tour three weeks back. Yesterday, I received the P-Patch newsletter and I’ve come to find out our bees are gone. Gone or dead, but they are no longer in the hive. This breaks my heart. Where have all the bees gone? I heard a little buzz about debilitated populations early this spring and checked in … Continue reading

Cooking with Borage

I plant borage in most of my gardens*. Borage grows quit tall and produces pretty blue spiked flowers. The leaves are edible, tasting vaguely of cucumber, though they are prickly and best eaten when young. I wrote about borage for GOOP.com, if you want to know more about growing the plant. The thing is, while I think borage is tasty, most of my clients don’t eat it. I think they just don’t get it at all. It’s completely new and foreign. Chief among the confused and disinterested is Chef Mark Fuller of Springhill in West Seattle. I grow food for his restaurant in his backyard. We’re able to produce a lot in a small space, but the borage always gets neglected. With Mark in mind, I set to finding some sort of restuarant-approved recipe wherein he can use borage. No small task, as Mark is a stellar chef. I mean, … Continue reading

When to Harvest Potatoes

Twitter is a great resource for information, though some may debate. I set up a Twitter account over a year ago (thanks to some friendly plying from my fab chef friend, Becky) and it’s been a wonderful site to both read from and post to. This week, I had a handful of questions regarding potatoes. Potatoes are an elusive plant, as the good stuff happens underground. When to harvest them is a real brain-teaser that leaves new gardeners questioning their skills. With that, here (in 140 words) is all you need to know about getting those sweet tubers out of the ground and on to your plate: When to harvest potatoes – after they are done blossoming. Don’t water – let skins dry. Harvest only as needed – the ground acts as storage Twitter: @gogogreengarden

Urban Pantry featured on Gwenyth Paltrow’s GOOP

This morning, my lil’ book Urban Pantry received some AWESOME coverage that I am thrilled to share. Gwenyth Paltrow, as you know, is an actress, but she also hosts this bomb website GOOP.com. I was an early fan of the site (Thanks for turning me on to it, Nga!) and so I sent her a copy of my book when it came out. Today, Urban Pantry got full coverage in her newsletter and a personal shout out! Thrilling because……..uh……..it’s GWENYTH PALTROW, but more importantly because this girl knows her stuff. She is a food person through and through and if she found something that resonates with her amongst the pages of Urban Pantry, I am so pleased. Check it out at GOOP.com.

Rasberry Orange Flower Jelly

I really really don’t like berry seeds in my preserves, cooking, smoothies, etc. For raspberry, in particular, the seeds are quite thick and hard. Raspberry is the one fruit I strain seeds from when I’m preserving, and one of the few fruits that I turn in to jelly. For a recipe, check out this months Seattle’s Child Magazine.