Monday, September 28, 2009

Scattered Monday Things

Tomatillo husks.

Ooph. This was not the best weekend of my life. Let's just leave it at that.

The good news:

The onions appear to have survived the flood and my four rows of tiny green threads have grown into four rows of tiny green strings. After my seed started leeks - the pencil leeks - I was wary of the liliaceae family when it came to direct sowing, but these red onions have renewed my enthusiasm.

The chickens are molting. I think this is good news. Our chickens have had some feather issues, to the point where I have read more about chicken health and disease than any person who would like to continue enjoying chickens and eggs ever should. We appear to have a spread of early molters and late molters. As per convention, our best layers are either just now beginning to molt or haven't even started molting. I am nonplussed to realize that our Hench Hens, the two Wyandottes, appear to be early molters. So they are mean and lousy layers. Humph.

I made lasagna this weekend. I actually don't make this very often, in part because if I buy everything that I really like to have in lasagna it costs about a million dollars. Here's what went into this weekend's pan: leeks, garlic, red pepper, green pepper, eggplant, tomatoes, roasted sungolds, mushrooms, kale, chard, italian sausage, noodles, parmesan cheese, parrano cheese, ricotta cheese, eggs, fresh thyme, pesto, salt, pepper. Of that huge long list I had to buy: mushrooms, noodles, and cheeses. Oh wait, and the sausage, but we buy that in large quantities from my work and it lives in the bat freezer until we need it and thus I don't feel like I am buying it when I can go get some in my nightgown. Let me just say here that adding pesto to the ricotta-egg-chard mixture has quite possibly set the bar for lasagnas.

Also in the Pan of Food Department: this recipe. I used leeks instead of onions and put in about three times the amount of greens called for and it was extremely tasty, especially with a fried egg on top. Oh, and I also did not use "low-fat mozarella" - gak. I used parrano and parmesan, pretty much my favorite cheese combination, as you can see. Both B and I are really, really tired and busy right now, so on Sundays I am doing my darndest to knock out some serious dinner making. So far so good.

The fall garden is screaming. This time last year I was fretting over smallish starts, so this year we got our butts in gear and planted early. It's a sea of green out there right now, and B and I have talked all summer about new ways to better hoop our beds. We are over the huge sails of plastic that get caught in the wind and freeze your fingers to the bone. More on that later.

In less pretty but to me no less fascinating news: predatory nematodes. Pest control is such an interesting part of our garden. When B and I cut ground on our front lawn, we were crestfallen to discover that our perfect garden plot was pretty much a big chunk of greasy red clay. Enter in some cash, some backbreaking soil amending, and a bunch of compost. And I do mean a bunch. We've grown some amazing vegetables out of it, but I think it also came with some creepy crawlies that we might not have had to deal with otherwise. Who really knows though. Anyway, a few of the things that have been bothering our plants are pests that incubate in the soil. Rather than try to wipe them out as adults, we put some one million microscopic nematodes into our garden and compost pile, and we're hopeful that we have timed the application with the cold weather such that we will never see another wireworm or flea beetle again! Ok, I realize that might be asking a bit much, but hope springs eternal. Thank goodness.


queenbeehoney said...

Your lasagna sounds so much better than what I make! But even my paltry recipe breaks the bank when I make it. But the good news is that we get about six dinners out of it if I don't invite the Gonz and Gramp to dinner!

The baked Polenta is definitely on my list for the week, I bet it makes great lunch food leftover. I have to admit that I am totally sick of sandwiches for lunch.

Just ate the very sweetest prune in the whole world. xoxoxoxoxo

cake said...

your fall garden looks/sounds great. i am curious about the nematodes. i want to try it too.

i know what you mean about lasagne. i had a party for all the wonderful people who helped me through the first 6mo of cosmo's life. i was pretty broke, and thought lasagna would be good way to feed lots of people. but i spent so much on the ingredients! i was shocked. then i over baked it, so a lot of the goodness disappeared. haven't made it since. carl crafted a beautiful one a couple of weeks ago. i think i'll leave it to him. but i want to tell him about yours it sounds heavenly.