Thursday, July 29, 2010

Monday with Marcia Lowry-Cooking with the Sun

it's HOT here in the high desert country of Wyoming - up to 90 degrees recently. On these sweltering days it's too much to heat up the kitchen to cook so we BBQ just about everything. Lately we've had a hankerin' for beef roast with root veggies, so I've relied on my other source for roasting - the Sun Oven. It's basically just a black plastic box with a tilting tray inside, an adjustable leg for the up and down angle, a glass door, and reflective metal wings that fold in when not in use. I use (as you can tell from the picture) an old dark colored roaster that fits on the tray, placing a locally grown, seasoned beef pot roast in first, adding no liquid. I started this morning about 10 am and just kept moving the oven clockwise with the sun every couple of hours or so. It stays at a pretty consistent 250 to 300 degrees. At about 2:30 pm I added veggies fresh from this morning's garden picking - new potatoes, turnips and baby carrots. The finished product, at about 6:30 pm was wonderful - juicy and tender... and NO hot kitchen!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Mondays with Marcia Lowry-on Thursday!

Having an abundant crop of Chinese cabbage this year, along with my consistent failure at making sauerkraut, I decide to try this recipe for canned coleslaw. It was very simple and the little bit that wouldn't fit into another quart jar tasted great.

Canned coleslaw

2 heads Chinese cabbage
2 large carrots
1 small onion
3-4 teaspoons salt

3 cups vinegar

1/2 cup water
1 cup sugar
3 teaspoons celery seeds

3 teaspoons mustard seeds

Shred/chop vegetables. Add the salt. Let stand 1 hour.

Boil syrup ingredients together for 1 minute. Cool. Add to veggies.

Pack into quart jars.

Process in boiling hot water bath for 15 minutes.

[ I do not know why the photos are small...I had trouble re-posting this one. I give up though. Thank you Marcia for your contribution. I love canning! Hopefully people will be able to click on the photos to enlarge them. mel]

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Some of my favorite things

This dressing is summery and refreshing. Great on quinoa pasta!

On Sat. eve I poached some chicken and then added some veggies...served it cold with that lovely dressing!
I bought a package of those cheap scrubbers at the dollar thing to clean my garden potatoes with!!
and I made potato salad on MIL's favorite! Dave wanted the HOT paprika on ours.....oh so good!! Used spicy dill pickles too. I love a good pickle.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Using My Taters from the Garden

Mel's Hash! Potatoes, Vidalia onions, green onions, chuck eye steak, leftover meatloaf, chopped tomatoes, orange bell peppers and cucumbers....and lots of herbs from the garden!

Dave likes lots of hot sauce on his poached eggs.
It was delish...if I do say so myself. I poach the eggs in about 4 inches of simmering water for about 2-3 min. I always add a bit of vinegar to the water before I add the egg..just to help "hold them" together.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Got Taters? You can grow them in California!

Today I pulled two types of russets and yukon golds.
I was watering and as the dirt washed away...voila! I had to work a bit harder to get to the yukon golds.

I planted the seedling potatoes near St. Paddy's day and I am getting quite the production now!

I see potato salad, hash browns, mashed potatoes, french fries......what do you see?

Friday, July 09, 2010

Friday with Marcia Lowry-Molly Cow had her baby

Molly cow pulled a sneaky one....1 week boy calf! Unfortunately, she managed to mask her impending labor and took off early yesterday across the creek to the FARTHEST corner of the FARTHEST pasture. Doing a "bed-check" about 8pm last night I discovered said baby - all dry and full of milk. My goal was to get them into the corral/barn but it wasn't going to happen last night. I tried my very best to get the calf up on the 4-wheeler to ride in front of me - did I say he is HUGE? - only managed his front feet and that was not going to work - did I also mention that Rob is in Minnesota?

So, I figured they would be ok for the night - not so much me - didn't sleep much and heard coyotes all night - some real and some in my short dreams. So, as soon as it was light enough I went back over across the creek - which to make things more difficult, was up quite a bit from last night - did I say I have only really leaky boots and the water is very cold at 6am? I managed to get a little rope halter on BIG BABY and as he wouldn't lead - I pushed him from behind and steered with the halter - Molly was quite accommodating - only had to stop about 20 times to lick him - and me - and head butt yearling daughter Andi - who was a royal pain in the rear for both of us.

All in all it took about 45 minutes to go about 1/2 mile and everyone is happy and contented and where they should be - except Andi who is in the pasture with Kitty the horse and NOT happy - she is SUCH a momma's girl. AND, unfortunately there are no pictures of the beautiful baby because along the way I lost my camera and upon retracing our steps - found it FLOATING FACE DOWN IN THE CREEK @#$&**. (Marcia got a new camera so enjoy the pic of Chuck!)

Monday, July 05, 2010

Monday with Marcia Lowry-Gardens and Molly Update

Kitchen garden 2010 - lettuce, peas, spinach, cabbage families, cucumbers, beets, turnips
Animal garden 2010 - pumpkins, mangles (fodder beets), carrots, parships
Out garden 2010 - garlic, potatoes, onions, kale, chard, green beans, summer and winter squash and corn

Molly milk cow has about 10-14 days until her calf is due. She seems quite a bit bigger to me than when she was this far along with last year's baby Andi - and is visibly uncomfortable....loves to be brushed and scratched in all the places she can't reach :))
Molly and Andi come into the corral from the pasture for part of the day to get away from the flies and, if they wish, the sun. Andi has really grown in almost a year!

Friday, July 02, 2010

Sundays with Marlena Spieler-Lamb with Artichokes

Not called for in this recipe, but the ingredients are. I like to make a paste out of the garlic, lemon, and rosemary. I add that into the slits along with the sliced garlic and rosemary.
I got this lovely boneless leg of lamb at Taylor's Market ...fabulous butcher shop in Sacramento!
I added the artichokes after the lamb had been roasting for a bit.
I also added carrots, fingerling potatoes, and asparagus to the dish. The potatoes were cooked underneath the lovely artichokes.
A perfect medium rare....that is the way I prefer my lamb anyway.

Ingredients: Easily serves 6 - 8.

1 leg of lamb 4.5 lbs
7 peeled garlic cloves...3 should be sliced lengthwise in order to put into the slits you make. The other 4 I mashed up into the paste.
5 chopped shallots
One handful of fresh rosemary..stalks removed. Chop half of it.
2 1/2 cups dry red wine like maybe Cabernet.
4 TBS olive oil
6 globe artichokes cut in half lengthwise (put in water with lemon juice to stop oxidation)
juice of one lemon (two if you don't have preserved lemons)
2 preserved lemon quarters, washed and chopped into small pieces
1 cup of beef stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Use a sharp knife and cut slits about 1/2 inch deep all over the leg of lamb..about 2 inches apart or so. Into each, put a sliced garlic clove, some of the paste, and a few rosemary sprigs. (see photo) You can marinate the lamb ahead of time..and I think it is a good idea! Be sure to take lamb out of fridge and let sit for at least 30 minutes before roasting. Note: If the lamb did not have the sciatic nerve removed (part of the Kosher process) use shoulder of lamb instead.

Paste: with a mortar and pestle, crush up the remaining garlic,a chopped rosemary, a bit of olive oil, a pinch of kosher salt and the juice of one lemon. You could put it all in a bowl and crush it up with a fork. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

2. Put the lamb in a non-metal dish, salt and pepper it, drizzle the olive oil over and pour half of the wine over it. Stick a meat thermometer into the lamb so you can take it out of the oven when temp reaches 130. It will continue to cook after you take it out of the oven to a med rare. If you prefer medium, take it out at 140 degrees.

3. Prepare your artichokes now by washing them and peeling off the bottom two or three rows near the stem. Have a large bowl of acidic water ready to plop them into after you cut each in half. Use a small spoon to scoop out the "choke" or feathery looking stuff before adding to water.

4. Put lamb in oven and roast at 450 for 15 minutes and then decrease heat to 325 degrees. Take roast out when lamb reaches your desired temp. This will take about two hours..depending on your oven. Leave the meat thermometer in roast until it is done resting...after you take it out. Let it rest about 13 minutes or so.

5. About 30 minutes before the lamb is done, put the artichokes around the lamb, drizzle with a bit of olive oil.. and let them roast along with the lamb. This would be the time to add your potatoes if you want to use them..and the carrots too. What the heck! Salt and pepper veggies and 1/2 of the beef broth is to be added now.

6. While lamb is resting, transfer pan juices to sauce pan and spoon off any fat...and pour the remaining wine and shallots into the pan. Turn up heat and let juices reduce to about half and then add the remaining beef stock. Stir until pan juices are rich and flavorful.

7. Slice lamb and pour juices over everything. Mint sauce is lovely as well with lamb. I like to slice my lamb about 1/2 inch thick. You'll be able to enjoy the artichoke heart...very nice and smokey!

This Italian Jewish Dish is one your friends and family will see as a special feast. Mine sure did!

Be sure to go over and check out what my blogger buddies are cooking from Marlena Spieler's Jewish Cooking cookbook this Sunday. Eileen at Just the Two of Us and Shankari at Sacramento Spice. While you are here, would you mind clicking on the Sacramento Top 25 graphic? It helps people find my blog. Thanks!

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Monday with Marcia Lowry-on Wednesday

Queso fresca with herbs...made at home.
Cheese curds

Pizza with the cheese....a Reuben Pizza. Homemade Saurkraut too.