Back!

I am back. As the garden gets into full swing, I am inspired to post again and officially stop hibernating.

Here is what’s going on in the garden!

Still pretty barren. But we have some amazing seedlings going strong (open pollinated.). They seem to be pretty tough as the weather does its New England thing and changes often. I received a beautiful greenhouse as a gift and it has been serving us well. We started parsley, tomatoes, zucchini, kale, cucumbers, and basil. I have not followed typical seed starting technique (no grow lights) so we will see how they do. I encourage and water them daily, though. : )

The peonies are going strong, and many of the perennials we added last year are coming up now. This always feels like a little miracle to me. We have hosta, phlox, and lillies well on their way. This year we added a honeysuckle to add some privacy and hopefully some butterflies.

The mint is coming back slowly, as are the chives. I bought some basil plants and started seeds. I can never have enough basil!

On the preservation front, we now have a dehydrator and Food Saver. More on that as we see how useful they are!

That’s about all. More to come as the season progresses and we see exactly what our little yard can do for us!

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Hello again!

Well, I’ve learned that you can burn out on blogging!  From now on, I’ll be posting on a variety of food-related topics as I fnd the time.  I hope I’ll find some readers out there to stick with me!

I’ve been exploring a lot on where my food comes from lately.  It is something I often have thought about, and I go through phases of focusing on it a lot.  The last time I chose to live on a vegetarian diet for about 5 months.  This time, I’m focusing on finding locally grown meat, and dairy that I feel is raised in the best way possible. 

Eric and I are not big meat eaters anyway, but I’m consciously looking at reducing the amount of meat I eat in order to buy better quality meat on our budget.

First attempt: Milk and eggs.
Went to a local ice cream store that is known for raising their own dairy.  My mom grew up near there, and I had been before.  They have a small dairy store on site so I figured I could get milk there.  To my surprise I also was able to eggs from a farm down the street.  The prices were about 20% more than the grocery store, so again, I was pleasantly surprised. 

I went home, fried up an egg, enjoyed a glass of milk. and generally patted myself on the back for being so socially conscious.

Then Monday came.  I called the farm that the eggs were raised on, just to get some info.  The eggs weren’t organic or anything but they were very local, from a neighboring town.  I’m not a big subscriber to the labels that regulate food- certified humane, certified organic, etc. Overall I’d rather make the judgement myself on how the food and animals were treated. 

So anyway, I got the farm phone number, and called.  The very nice woman who answered the phone informed me that this was a “contract farm” (I have not been able to figure out what that means) and the eggs were raised in Amish Country.  Pennsylvania. 

So… I thought about driving to the farm, but realized that it wouldn’t make sense to bother, and chalked it up to experience.

But now my “local, farm fresh eggs” mock me whenever I look in the fridge. 
 (from http://www.etsy.com/shop/asherjasper)

Have I ever mentioned that eggs are just about my favorite food?  I never get sick of the incredible, edible egg. 

So anyway, I’m still working on sourcing local, farm fresh eggs from happy chickens. 

Coming up:
Sourcing local ingredients
My foray into the CSA (yes that rhymed)
New recipes we’ve been working on
Books, blogs and podcasts that inspire my food journey