5 Ways To Save Time In The Garden

Less Time Garden

Ah the simple life. Sounds so placid, doesn’t it? All those simple pleasures: home-grown food, warm earth between our toes, the cluck and baa and buzz of backyard animals, the happy smells of a kitchen much used. So why does this simple life seem so freaking complex sometimes, huh? That’s the part no one talks [Continue Reading...]

How To Make Simple Syrup

Simple Syrup

I was at my local Yuppie-Hippie market and saw that you can actually buy Simple Syrup for cocktails. Like, pre-made, with a label and everything. A beautifully designed 12-ounce bottle of the stuff will only set you back about $7. Wait, SEVEN DOLLARS? For sugar water? It’s really quite shocking that I don’t get thrown [Continue Reading...]

How To Trim A Whole Beef Tenderloin For The Holidays

Trim A Whole Beef Tenderloin

Thinking of splashing out some cash on Christmas dinner? Beef tenderloin (the cut that gives you filet mignon steaks) is a classic “wow, nice meal” choice for the omnivores. There’s no getting around it: this is a spendy cut of meat – the grass-finished tenderloins I’m hacking up here cost me $15.95 a pound. But [Continue Reading...]

How To Make and Use Caramelized Onions (The Pro Method)

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Let’s be clear. There is a difference between meltingly soft, slow-caramelized onions and grilled onions. If you think a caramelized onion is basically a hunk of raw onion with some char on the edges like you might find in a nasty Panda Express mall stirfry, then you are in for a very pleasant surprise. True, [Continue Reading...]

How to Get The Seeds Out of A Pomegranate Without Going Crazy

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Pomegranate: possibly the most delicious fruit ever. Surely the most tedious fruit ever. Separating all those seeds from the extensive, bitter membranes that intersperse the delicious seeds of the pom is a herculean task. I have developed a pretty decent hold-sections-of-pom-over-the-sink-and-scrape-the-seeds-off-with-my-teeth technique, and even manage to eat this seasonal winter fruit without getting horror-movie-esque levels [Continue Reading...]

Infographic: How to Roast A Turkey

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It’s November, and you know what that means. In just a few weeks, all over the United States people will express their gratitude for family, health, and living in this great nation with the annual turkey-gravy-mashed-potato bender. Thanksgiving is, without a doubt, my favorite holiday. Here’s why: I love to cook and eat with family and [Continue Reading...]

Stop Throwing Away Free Tomato Sauce

Making Thick Tomato Sauce From Tomato Skins (3)

It has come to my attention that many people are unwittingly throwing away free tomato sauce when they preserve their summer tomatoes. Here’s the thing: like all fruit, the skin of tomato is where much of the natural pectin resides. Pectin is the starch that gives jams their thickness and good tomato sauce its natural, [Continue Reading...]

DIY Concrete Mesh and Rebar Trellis

Concrete Mesh Trellis (5)

Last April 2nd I took these photos of my newly-constructed Half-Ass Hugelkultur Beds. Today, just shy of three months later they look like this. Can I get a woot-woot for hugels? Other than the massive attack of greenery, one of the biggest changes in this planting area are the twin concrete mesh trellises we installed [Continue Reading...]

Giveaway: Food Grown Right, In Your Backyard plus The Three Rules Small Space Gardeners Must Follow

Food Grown Right

In the Seattle urban farming scene, there are a couple of guys – Colin and Brad – who seem to be everywhere. They run the aptly named Seattle Urban Farm Company, and under that moniker set-up and maintain edible gardens in backyards and on restaurant rooftops around the city and teach countless workshops for beginning [Continue Reading...]

Strawberry Jam Margaritas and the Mason Jar Trick That Will Blow Your Mind

Strawberry Jam Margarita (9)

I ate my first homegrown strawberry of the year yesterday. You know what that means? It’s time to use up all that damn strawberry jam still kicking around the pantry from 2011. While my love for PB&J only goes so far, my love of Mommy’s Liquid Refreshment knows no bounds. And so, after some arduous recipe development, the [Continue Reading...]

Never Buy A Rotten Avocado Again

Ripe Not Rotten Avocado (1)

Where I live, far from avocado country, it’s not unusual for organic avocados to be $2.50 or $3 each. “Oh, waaah, you big crybaby,” locavore purists might argue, “avocados are expensive because you live in Seattle, so stop buying non-local food!” To which I reply: “The zombies can have my guacamole when they pry it [Continue Reading...]

Canning Swirly Fruit: An Easy Way To Prep Pears and Apples

Canned Pears

Here’s a lovely way to save some time when you prepare apples or Asian pears for canning. Use an apple peeler-corer (see mine at work here) to make beautiful coils of automatically-cored firm fruit. The swirly fruit looks fantastic in the jar, and packs in well for a nice, well-filled raw pack. Don’t get too [Continue Reading...]