June 24, 2012

beet hummus

2012.06_beet hummus I was recently at Shine Restaurant and Gathering Place with friend who ordered beet hummus. I hadn't heard of beet hummus before. Why didn't someone tell me? Seriously. It was really good. Obviously, I have since made beet hummus at home. You can put it on sandwiches or you can eat it as a dip with crackers. Really you can't go wrong

1/2 lb. beets
3 T. fresh lime juice
2 T. tahini
1 t. cumin
1 clove garlic
black pepper

Chop the tops off the beets and boil them for 30 minutes until they are tender.  Then remove the beets from the water and let them cool so that you can rub off the skins.  Once the beets are all cleaned up, blend them with the remaining ingredients.  Like regular hummus, beet hummus is pretty flexible in flavoring so go wild!

June 23, 2012

disappointing hops

2012.06_disappointing hops
I had been hoping for hops, but today, when I dug up the two rhizomes to check on them, all I found were these rotted out shells of sticks. Where did we go wrong? My only hypothesis is that we watered their container too often, causing them to rot. One of them definitely had white root nubs when we planted it.

Has anyone seen this problem before?

disappointing radishes

2012.06_disappointing radishes
A friend gave us a bunch of radish seeds for sprouts. I planted them in a container and here's what they grew into...not totally unexpected but pretty disappointing.

June 22, 2012


2012.06_garden work
Here's what our garden looks like these days. Some notes:
  • Lots of calendula flowers. There were lots of self-seeded volunteer calendula sprouts since we didn't dead head that much.
  • Lots of volunteer sunflowers as well. We kept two, one of which is the tallest plant in the whole community garden!
  • Our onions (from sets planted in spring) seem to be doing really well. They all bloomed, which is less desirable since it makes the onions worse for storing. The flowers taste pretty good though.
  • The sage and oregano are both doing really well.
  • We are continually harvesting lots of lettuce and arugula.
  • The chamomile is recovering quite nicely.
  • Tomatoes are doing better after feeding them Foxfarm "Grow Big."
  • Peas are doing well. Not really climbing their structure as much as we'd hoped. We cut them back a bit to make room for beans.
  • We've been letting purslane grow as a live mulch and beneficial companion plant.
Here's a recent harvest:
2012.06_a recent garden harvest

June 21, 2012

raw flaxseed crackers

2012.06_flaxseed crackers
I've had flaxseed crackers at a few restaurants and decided to try making them myself. I followed this recipe: 2 c. flaxseeds, ~2 c. water, 1/4 c. tamari, and whatever flavorings you like. Mix all ingredients and soak flaxseeds for 2 hours or more, adding additional water as necessary. You'd like the soaked mixture to be a pourable goo, but not too runny. Then spread thinly (~1/8") on plastic dehydrator sheets ("paraflexx" or "teflex") and set to 110ºF. Dehydrate for 4–6 hours, then flip and dehydrate for another 3–4 hours. Our used dehydrator only came with one sheet (fine for a halved recipe), so I had to improvise: I cut parchment paper into circles with holes in the middle.

2012.06_dehydrating flaxseed crackers  2012.06_dehydrating flaxseed crackers
The parchment paper actually ended up working better than the plastic sheet! It allowed the bottom to dry more and made flipping much easier. A doubled recipe (4 c. flaxseed) will fill 5 levels of the dehydrator.

My favorite flavorings to add are lime juice and chili powder. I did one batch with lots of black pepper, liquid smoke, and fennel, and I swear it tasted like beef jerky (or at least tofu jerky).

June 18, 2012

first csa share of the season

2012.06.13_Isabelle CSA Share 
Summer has arrived!  The farmers' market has been going for 2 months now.  Our garden is shaping up.  And now, finally, our CSA share with Isabelle Farm has begun.  Bring on the veggies!

June 2, 2012

nytimes carrot cake muffins

2012.06_nytimes carrot cake muffin
 Today I went on an early morning hike with a good friend. Our mission was to take our sweet time up top Boulder's Bear Peak enjoying coffee, breakfast, newspapers, and mountain vistas.  I brought these carrot cake muffins that I made from a nytimes recipe! Of course, since this is Boulder I snuck in some ground flax seeds.