Summer salads

It’s so summer. I could almost say the hottest, driest summer I can remember. It’s been roughly 6 weeks that have reminded me of  growing up in Florida where virtually everyday the sun rises and stays out shining hot. Except here it’s about 70 degrees instead of 90. I’ll take it.

We earned it here in the PNW. I didn’t get the garden in till the third week of May because it was so wet. The four leggers and 2 leggers were slopping around in mud pretty much till the end of May.

Our four goat mama’s  cranked out three sets of triplets and one set of twins. We had a full house with 11 kids and 4 moms. And so we are building a new BARN. Ollie is so supportive of this venture- it also gives his farming roots a chance to grow and thrive…  The boat and/or sports car has been bumped to the next decade:)

We (well they) will be moving in by September and we’ll be ready to bring on the winter.

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The garden, though late, is in full swing. We are chowing down on green salads daily and actually got tomatoes early due to my $179 hoop house. We added support with rebar stakes and it’s holding out great. Plenty of basil and tomatillos this year!

wendyellenthomas.comThe first little ones….

We are eating lots of these kinds of salads…

Broccoli & red cabbage-

  • 2 cups broccoli
  • 1 cup shredded red cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded carrot
  • ½ shredded or finely cut fennel
  • 2 scallions chopped
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 T white wine vinegar
  • 1 T cider vinegar

A little salt and pepper and a dash of honey or maple syrup if you want it a little sweeter but the fennel also gives it a little sense of sweet,

Preserved lemon and herbed quinoa salad- No real recipe for this one.

It’s just chopped up preserved lemon (I’ve been making a lot of this), a handful of chopped parsley, a couple tablespoons of chopped fresh mint and cilantro and toasted pine nuts with olive oil, a squeeze of lemon and a little  honey apple cider vinegar ( I love this stuff).

And here’s one of my favorite green salads with steak, broccoli salad, white kimchi, spiralized zucchini, a little of our house feta,  avocado, last of our currants and a lime vinaigrette. A little fresh mint on this one as well.  Boy if we could grow citrus and avocado We’d have it all!

On the farm…

Big brown eyed Else

The gang hanging on a late morning
Juan in a box
Mr. Brown posing
Chickens getting their fill of whey

Dinah helping the electrician-

See that bit of green leaf? I’m holding it. I take a bunch of greens, shake them and run and the group chases after me. Fun times!Happy Summer Days!

wendy

Apple quince crumb cake

applecrumbcake and pressing 2013-5

I’m still enjoying the last bits of Germany. I’ve walked the architecturally divine streets of the small town of Detmold, the location of the Hochschule für Musik where O is officially finishing up his last semester as Professor. And we spent several days in Babblesburg with my Schwiegermutter (mother-in-law) and Schwägerin (sister-in-law) and family in Babelsburg, which lies just outside of Potsdam, (which lies just outside of Berlin:) But before I share photos on my days here, I must get this cinnamon apple crumb cake recipe out to you. If you ever happened to search the Internet with the not so original words apple crumb cake, you might have already stumbled across this recipe from buttercreamblondie. It is a go to this fall for apple cake. I researched quite a few recipes and am not sure how this one was developed but I very much like the ratios. I followed the recipe exactly except for the addition of about a cup of honey poached quince. Ok I’m lying a little because the first time I had to cut in 1/2 cup full fat yogurt cause I didn’t have enough sour cream. Anybody out there watch the sitcom The Middle? Imagine me tucking my head to my chest and whispering “I’m lying”.

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Cider pressing 2013

We had the most lovely fall apple pressing last weekend. Although the big parties can be fun, we also enjoy keeping it small some years with just a few neighbors and the awesome press we’ve had forever. It’s one of my favorite fall activities.

applecrumbcake and pressing 2013-12

It has a motor that grinds the apples so our almost five year old helper can jump right in.

applecrumbcake and pressing 2013-6

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Fall recipes… revisited.

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This looks familiar your saying to yourself. Well at least those who have been hanging around these parts for the past year. And well, if you haven’t been, nor have you had the inclination to dig into the past, I’ll make it easy for you.  Your starter, main and dessert. We’ll start with dessert first.

Pumpkin Bread pudding with Spicy Apple Caramel sauce

This is also my little hello and no, I haven’t fallen off the edge of the blog sphere. My bricks and mortar shop, Chez Chloe (check out the new website), had a hopping summer and I’ve been busy busy preparing for the holidays. My dear husband and number one eater is off to Germany for one last round of teaching and then turning in his papers to become a full time US of A resident on the one and only Orcas Island in the Evergreen State! Three cheers!!! My cooking and photos tend to wain when he is away.

Here is a starter that is a little out of the ordinary. Try this with your next fall meal. It was a hit.

Pumpkin and Feta Salad with Maple Vinaigrette

pumpkinandfetasalad

I see I was having some fun with fonts last fall:)

Here is a wonderful stew to serve between your starter and dessert.  Inspired by a post from my friend at Karista’s Kitchen, Mulligatawny is an anglo-Indian recipe often served with chicken but I used beef and will make it again soon with lamb.

This salad, stew and dessert made the perfect fall meal.

Mulligatawny

mulligatawney soup

 

Hope all is right in your world and the colorful leaves fall gently around you.

Enjoy.

Tschüß xx

New Year’s Salad and welcome Otis

New Year's Salad & Otis-5Just a little hello on the last day of 2012.

Here is a salad inspired by my friend Jen who’s roots grow from Sweden. This salad, her mother’s holiday special is a great way to ring in the New Year.

Here are the nuts and bolts:

PM New Year's Salad & Otis-3

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Gluten free gingery starry starry nights & a girl crush

almond cookies gluten freeI found these almond based chocolate cookies in a book I enjoyed very much this summer. Gesine Bullock -Prado’s My Life from Scratch. Formerly known as Confessions of a Closet Master Baker, I wondered if the mass public just couldn’t take this woman’s fabulous sense of humor. It went from the first title in 2009 to the second in 2010. Maybe the title just needed to be shorter. Hmmmm… It’s her story of going from the stress of LA limelight to rural Vermont. It will be most appreciated by those who love to bake.

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Roasted Hakkaido (pumpkin) and feta salad w/ Maple vinaigrette

pumpkin and feta salad

It’s a rainy Monday that is doing a rather fine job pretending to be Sunday. There is no school today, no need to go to town, therefore no need to dress. I’ve enjoyed reading what feels like 101 blogs. I’m eating a satisfying ham sandwich slathered with mayo and mustard on white bread. It’s like giving into a craving…on all accounts. Really it’s the first day since getting back a week ago to Orcas Island, that I’ve not had a full day agenda. We all need these days. It almost feels like the spanse of time between Christmas and New Year’s. Which outside of the years being responsible for  a cafe and/or retail store is like living a few days in a warm cozy cocoon, visiting with friends and family, enjoying hot drinks, reading books and being together. Now that I think of it, this is what I look forward to most at Christmas.

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Morning walk on the Detmold countryside

A few rambling thoughts today…

The views from the path I took yesterday leaving O’s work place left me contemplating life and the natural beauty I’m fortunate to experience. This was literally two minutes from the door to his band room. Detmold is a small city in North Rhine -Westphalia, whose history dates back to the late 700’s. And no, I didn’t forget the 1 in front of the 7. If you divided Germany into four parts, Detmold lies just under Bielefeld in the middle of the upper left corner. Standing tall just outside of town is Hermann the German, “a monument commemerating the Cherusci war chief Hermann or Arminius and the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest in which the Germanic tribes under Arminius recorded a decisive victory in 9 AD over three Roman legions under Varus.” There’s your history lesson for the day.. month..year.

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Summer clips

Summer comes and goes quickly… As I mentioned we are back to school and ‘the routine’ while folks on Orcas are still enjoying the last scraps of summer till Labor Day. I’m enjoying our own last weeks of summer vicariously through our large roll of photo imports and the thankfully persisting warm days and evenings. So get comfy cause I got some highlights of summer photos to share!

Waking up at 4.30am at the Anacortes Inn, (it’s no Hilton but is clean and does the job) the day after landing in Seattle, patiently waiting for day break and letting my DOD (81yrs old) sleep till we can’t take it anymore… The first glimpse of summer from the Anacortes ferry landing.

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