Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Home made Salsa

I through this salsa together tonight and boy is it good
You will need :
2 cans diced tomatoes ( I used one Italian style with onion and garlic and one with green chili's I suppose stewed would work fine.)
1 large sweet onion
6 large cloves of garlic peeled
4 jalapeno peppers cut in a few pieces (seeds removed for a milder salsa)
1 medium bunch of cilantro, stems removed
7 oz can of diced green chilies
6 tsp ground cumin
2 Tablespoons of fresh lime or lemon juice
2 tsp. salt
4 tsp sugar
4 lb fresh tomatoes 4 large or 8 smaller ones

Place everything except the fresh tomatoes into the work bowl of a food processor.  Process until the mixture is as smooth/chunky as you like.  Transfer into a large bowl.  (This makes a bunch if you want a smaller amount you can cut this in half)

Cut the fresh tomatoes into chunks, and process in the food processor until as finely chopped as you like.  Don't over process you don't want tomato puree.  Stir the tomatoes into the remaining ingredients in the bowl.   

Monday, July 15, 2013

Here is a new store to ad to our comp savings

Sunfresh weekly ad I will be adding this store to my comp list.  you may want to take a look and see if there are any sales that you may want to add  to your list. ~ Ethel

Monday, July 8, 2013

July Gardening Checklist

  • Weed and Mulch! As the temperature rises and the summer dries out a little, the growth of the weeds will slow down some.
  • Finish up harvest of your cool season plants like peas, radishes and lettuce.
  • Prepare your garden for a fall planting of your cool season crops.
  • If you planted potatoes in March, you will be harvesting this month.  As plants yellow and die back, it is time to dig those potatoes. Otherwise, mulch the potato plants again and wait for the harvest.
  • Begin harvesting your summer crops such as green beans, tomatoes and summer squash.
  • There is still more time to plant another round of green beans, cucumbers, carrots and summer squash. This would be a good way to fill in the garden where the lettuce and peas grew.
  • Harvest and dry or freeze your herbs.
  • Keep your annual flowers dead headed and pruned to continue blooming.  Pull out and compost pansies and other cool season annuals that are dying back. 
  • You garden thrives with about 1 inch of rain per week.  As it gets hot and dry, you will need to supplement that with extra deep waterings. 
  • Inspect any new fruit coming on and look for any sign of disease or insect infestation.
  • Hand pick any pests and drop them into a bucket of soapy water.
  • Keep a basket with a loose weave in the garden and ready for harvest collection.  The holes in the weave will help to let dirt and debris fall through, while still holding all of your garden goods. 
  • After harvesting, be sure to eat or properly store your produce right away. Leaving them in a collection basket for any amount of time will promote mold and mildew growth, spoiling the goods you worked so hard for. 
  • Wash your harvested produce in a cool water bath with a splash of white vinegar.  It will safely kill any germs and help to remove the dirt and bugs. 

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Tip of the Day ~ Clover is Important

 Does you yard seem to be plagued with large patches of clover?  Well, don't run out and get a herbicide to take care of it. Instead, embrace it. Here is why.
These little guys love clover.  The use it to make clover honey, which is one of the yummiest delicacies in all of the earth.  Right now, honey bees are really struggling.  Their populations have been hit by many hardships and beekeepers are having a hard time keeping them alive these days.  They need all  the help they can get from us.  We can help by keeping the blossoms that they love in our yard and gardens.  Bees are attracted to blue, white and yellow flowers especially.  And, it helps to not spray you plants with pesticide. Instead attract beneficial insects or physically remove pests from your plants.    Many honey bees are killed when an apple tree is sprayed.
If you help the bees out, they will help you out.  They are excellent pollinators in your yard and gardens.  In fact, some plants will not fruit without the help of a pollinator.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Tip of the Day ~ Clean Your Garbage Disposal

Don't throw away those orange peels after you strain them out of your orange vinegar!
Run them, a few at a time through your garbage disposal.  Be sure to run cold water the whole time, just as you would normally.  The rinds will scrub your blades, and the citrus and vinegar still left in them will help to cut any grease or dirt away.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Banana Pepper Pickles

My banana peppers are almost ready to pick.  This reminds me of the lazy pickles I made last year and blogged about on my old blog. I thought it would be fun to share today.

I have to say that I really love banana pepper pickles. Spicy or mild, I love them.  On hamburgers, salad or lunch meat, I love them.  So, this spring I decided that I was going to make some of my own.  Then I planted 8 beautiful pepper plants, and watered, and watered and watered and watered.  It's been dry here on the teeny tiny Stephenson ranch.

Well, my beautiful peppers grew and they grew and they grew, and my 5 year old boy picked them and picked them.  I found myself with a bunch of peppers and no idea how to pickle them.  Well, it just so happened to be baseball season, and I also had no time to pickle them.  So, I did something crazy.  This is what I did.

I got out my almost empty dill pickle jar. I ate the pickles left in the jar.
I washed my peppers.
I sliced my peppers.
I rinsed the little bitty seeds out of the pepper slices.
Then I plopped them into the jar of pickle juice.
The very next day, I had pickled peppers.

Then, I called my grandma.  I told her that I did this crazy thing.  She laughed and said that she has done the same thing before, too.  

Oh, and guess what.  It works with beets and bread & butter pickle juice too.  And, according to Grandma, it works with cucumbers as well.  

Tip of the Day - Let your kids garden

Give your kids an area where they can do their own gardening.  This year, my kids are growing sunflower houses.  Christina has been keeping hers completely weed-free.  Jack has just been trimming his weeds down with the garden tools.  Both are loving the project and learning a lot.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Tip of the Day - Lard Soap

A bar of lard soap is great for rubbing into stains before laundering clothing.  It is an all natural and very potent cleanser that is easy on delicate skin.