garden.goods

I can’t wait to get these beauties outside!

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dog.birthday.pupcake

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Our awesome little Blue Heeler Cedar just celebrated her 8th Birthday (or is it Barkday?). And since I’m “that person” I absolutely had to make her a cake. Dog cakes are different from people cakes as all that sugar and extra stuff isn’t good for them (I know it’s not really good for us either, but we have thumbs so it’s ok), so carrots are the main ingredient in this one. And considering carrots are pretty much the only ‘people food’ she’s allowed, and absolutely loves them and comes running when she hears them being chopped, this cake was a huge doggy hit.

  • Grate 1 1/2-2 cups carrots
  • Add 1 cup flour, 1/4 cup peanut butter, 1 teaspoon baking soda and 1/4 cup honey to a bowl
  • Arrange slices from 1 large carrot on the bottom of a lightly greased cake pan to allow for ultimate doggy cake presentation (yeah, I know she doesn’t care)
  • Pour batter into pan and bake for 30-40 minutes in a 350* oven
  • Cool, release and serve

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She thought it was pretty much the best thing ever. I’m not even sure she bothered to chew. Happy Birthday Cedar!

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sandwich.bread

My new weekly thing seems to be to make a loaf of bread and I really look forward to it. Not only do I think fresh baked bread is probably the best thing in the world (my Death Row meal would most likely consist of 6 fresh baguettes and a few sticks of butter), but it’s getting easier and easier to rock a fabulous loaf as I tweak the recipe a bit each time. And I’ve got it.

  • Proof 1 3/4 teaspoons fresh yeast in 1 cup warm water
  • Add 3 cups bread flour, 2 TB melted butter, 2 TB sugar and a dash of salt to your mixer
  • With the dough hook, add water to bowl and mix at a medium speed
  • If flour is still dry, add a teaspoon of water at a time – too sticky means it will stick to the bowl and not knead properly (then you have to use your hands to do it and that’s just crazy talk)
  • Allow the dough hook to knead the dough for 5 minutes
  • Set dough ball in lightly oiled bowl, cover with tea towel and rise on a heating pad until doubled in size

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Punch down dough and roll onto a well floured surface. Roll in a loose rectangle shape until the dough is about half an inch thick. Roll the dough onto itself forming a big tube, then bring ends to meet in the middle. Lightly form the loaf with your hands to ensure the tucked in ends stay and and place in your loaf pan. Lightly flour top, replace tea towel, and rise once again on your heating pad until the dough rises 2 inches or so above the sides of the pan.

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Bake for 25 minutes in a 350* degree oven and bask in the delicious smells of your kitchen.

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Cool (as long as you can stand), cut, and eat. Your bread will last about a week if kept sealed in a plastic bag, but is best used for sandwiches within the first 3 days. So. Good. And easy!!

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rice.noodle.bean.sprout.bowl

We have been observing a ‘No Spend March’ this month which means my weekly day off routine of sushi-go-round is on hold for the time being. We’re working through things in the cupboard and the freezer, and getting creative (“They” say the average household has enough food in cupboards etc, to last a month. This house could last for 6…). Today’s non sushi lunch turned out so great, I just had to blog about it.

We sprout our own mung beans and this batch needed to be used asap before it got too “rooty” and asparagus is on the menu for dinner, so it was up to me to put these to use. There has also been a packet of rice noodles in the cupboard being ignored for a very¬†(very, very) long¬† time so I thought it was time to cook them up as well. Saute the whole bunch with some chopped onion, a little butter and sesame oil, a squirt or two of Bragg’s (you could use soy sauce as well) and viola! So. Good. It made a full pan so there are definitely leftovers which is awesome because it’s so good!

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tin.can.greens

After polling the customers in my shop and realizing they were super interested in jarred herbs and things year round (not just at the Farmers Market) I have started an extra grow project in our greenhouse (read: spare bedroom). Recycled jars that I’ve been hoarding forever (because some day I will need them!) have been filled with a layer of river pebbles (for drainage) and dirt, and topped with all sorts of herb seeds…from basil, to oregano, rosemary and cilantro, I’m ready to grow some delicious countertop greens for folks.

And then there were the tin cans….I couldn’t let them go to waste without a purpose, so those are holding a mix of greens made especially for cats. It encourages them to chew and gives them vital things they need (that’s what the package said so I’m sticking to it). Another layer of river rocks for drainage, some dirt, and seeds and viola! Cat grass! I’ve been wracking my brain for a cool label (because no one wants my actual white bean/corn/black bean cans) and poked through the fabric stash to come up with a quick no fuss cover. Measure, cut, hold glue. Done.

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pigeon.post.update:found!

I have always wondered if those ads on the milk carton worked to help find people…and apparently it does! No sooner had I posted a virtual missing persons post, Henrietta returned home!

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She was lucky enough to spend the holidays with one of my great friends and her adorable progeny. I hear rumors that she hung out near the Christmas tree, took a trip to kiddo gymnastics class, and helped to celebrate a 5 year old’s birthday. What a lucky bird!

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AlexisBirdII

The estimated distance traveled so far is: 22,169 miles

Where do you think she will go next?

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urban.garden.beginnings

It’s that time of year: time to get those seedlings a’sproutin for this years new and improved urban garden! I learned a lot from our adventures last year and I’m ready to make this one the best one yet.

photo(20)Thus far I have the tomatoes, jalapenos, squash and cucumbers starting in the greenhouse (read: spare bedroom). As soon as the squash outgrow their tiny pots here, they will be moved to my storefront (with huge windows) to further grow inside before they can start their lives outside. Herbs in jars have also been started as there was a huge response when my storefront customers were polled.

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One of our avocado pits was planted last week and this one is almost ready. Lots of great “growing” energy in the house. I love it!

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