August 15, 2010

Gifts of the Summer

 I'm doing my shopping in the garden now.  I'm pulling out little summer squash, zucchini, artichokes, broccoli, chard, edible flowers, and many herbs.  The green beans are starting to appear and the tomatoes are starting to ripen.  My shopping list this week was short and consisted of small items I needed for the meals I will prepare for the week.  I wanted to make a zucchini pie so I needed some cheese and eggs this week, but most my groceries are coming from my garden or another local garden right now.

I surveyed my fresh groceries and made some pretty fun decisions about what to do with my fresh garden vegetables and the fruit of the season.   I had some organic soy beans in the drawer so I made some fresh soy milk to use in the zucchini pie.  I made some peach preserves sweetened with fresh local honey using Agar for thickener.  I only used a little, I didn't want a jelly consistency, just a thick fruit mixture.

Peach Preserves

I put up some blueberry freezer jam sweetened only with 1 teaspoon of powdered stevia to five pounds of blueberries. To make up for the liquid lost by omitting the sugar, I used one cup of water. I used pectin to thicken this time. It's fruity and sweet and doesn't taste like it's sugarfree.

Sugar Free Blueberry Freezer Jam

These little summer squash all became raw teriyaki noodles.  I'll post the recipe separately a little later. I have a handy little sprializer gadget that turns them into curly long noodles.  Tossed with a teriyaki sauce made from pumpkin oil, pomegranate juice, shoyu, miso, a little agave, and fresh ginger, they become a fresh Asian inspired dish.

Sunburst, Crookneck, and Zucchini Squash picked this morning.

I have some cabbage, four large heads, sliced and wilting in the crock for some homemade sauerkraut.  I also prepared some barley this morning and have been adding some sliced vegetables in throughout the day.   As I used the vegetables in other dishes, I threw the ends and pieces in with the cooked barley.  The barley has fresh cucumber, tomatoes, peppers, squash, peas, and fresh raw corn kernels.  I think I'll add some balsamic vinegar and a dash of chili oil and call it a barley vegetable salad. 

I still want to make something sweet for a dessert.   My friend, Morgaine, made a blackberry custard recently and I have some of the fresh eggs I bought for the zucchini pie left.  I think I'll hunt down that blog and make some peach custard with some of the preserves I just made.  I'll let you know how that works out.

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