Archive | strawberries RSS feed for this section

Sweet Tooth Sunday

9 Jun

You guys.

SRBarsFinal1

I have been staring at the farmer’s market rhubarb in my crisper drawer all week, pining away for some kind of baked good.  I had planned to make rhubarb brownies, but I am not in a chocolate mood.  Yesterday when I made a trip to the grocery store, I snagged some strawberries on sale.  Naturally, I thought of a strawberry-rhubarb crisp so I took to Pinterest!  I found a nice little recipe, but was missing a few ingredients so I improvised.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Bars (Source: The Tart Tart)

For the crumble/crust:

  • 3/4 cup oat flour (or ground oats, in my case)
  • 1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 t. baking powder
  • zest of half a lemon
  • 1 1/2 sticks butter (I used salted butter and omitted the salt), cubed
  • 1 large egg

Like I said before, I don’t happen to have any oat flour laying around the house.  So, I grabbed my trusty mortar and pestle and ground some old-fashioned oats. Yes, as in Quaker Old Fashioned Oats.

SRBars1

Holler. At. Me.

Once my dry ingredients were assembled, I stirred in one lightly beaten egg and the lemon juice with a wooden spoon.

SRBars2

Here’s the thing about making a crisp or a crumble or a pie crust: use cold butter.  You have to.  Trust me. I mean it.  And don’t mix it with your hands because that will warm the butter.  If you have a pastry cutter, good for you.  I am not that shmancy. I used two knives and cut the butter into the flour mixture, like a good little Yankee who was raised by a southern lady.

Once you get the mixture to a consistency where its chunky, press 2/3 of the mixture into a 9″ pan that you’ve buttered and floured.  (You are going to reserve the 1/3 for the top, so feel free to save a little more if you want.  I like a strong base so that they are easier to cut into bars.)  In fact, I encourage you to press the crust in firmly.

SRBars3

Then, mix together the filling  & spoon it over top of the crust:

  • 2 cups rhubarb, sliced in 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 cups strawberries, sliced
  • juice of half lemon
  • 1 t. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 4 T. corn starch

SRBars4

Sprinkle on the rest of the topping and bake at 375F for 50 minutes.

SRBars5

When these came out, I let them cool for a few hours before I cut into them.  They were still warm in the middle and seemed like they wanted to fall apart, but thought better of it.  I didn’t really give mine much time to think about it.

SRBarsLastBite

I mean, how could you not want to bring these to a cookout or  picnic?

SRBarsFinal1

Memorial Day

27 May

God Bless America!!

Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day everyone!!  While we are spending time with our families at picnics and barbeques, let’s not forget the real reason why we celebrate:  to remember and show gratitude to all of the amazing members of Armed Forces.

How does your family celebrate Memorial Day?

Mine is pretty typical: FOOD!  Lots of yummy food!

Because I had to work today, we traveled north to my parent’s house on Sunday and had a cook-out.

My mom made broccoli salad:

broccolisalad

lamb kebobs (my favorite thing in the world!) & hot dogs for Miss. Picky Pants:

lambdogs

you can’t eat lamb at my house with hot pepper sauce, garlic aioli, & Syrian bread:

fixings

SyrianBread

and corn on the cob:

corn

I made Christina’s grandma’s macaroni salad, which was a big hit:

macaronisalad

and her step-mom’s strawberry salsa with cinnamon sugar chips (recipe below):

SSCC1

*************************************************************************************************

Strawberry Salsa with Cinnamon-Sugar Chips:

Strawberry Salsa:

SS1

  • 1 lb. strawberries, diced
  • 2 Golden Delicious apples, peeled & diced
  • 8 oz. raspberries
  • 2 T. white sugar, 1 T. brown sugar, 3 T. strawberry preserves

Mix everything together in a container with lid and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Cinnamon-Sugar Chips:

CC1

  • Flour tortillas (at least 8)
  • 1/4 – 1/2 stick butter, depending on how many tortillas you use
  • Cinnamon & Sugar to taste

Pile the tortillas on top of each other and cut into wedges.  Dissolve 4 T.sugar into melted butter, then baste onto chips.  Sprinkle more sugar on top and then dust with cinnamon.  The sugary butter makes them brown and crisp up perfectly!  We put the oven on broil and watched them until they turned golden brown and crispy.  I walked away from the first batch and they ended up burned to a crisp, so be careful!  Everyone’s oven heats differently, so I recommend doing a  small batch first and use that to determine how long yours need to stay in.

Our CSA: How It Works

12 Jun

Remember when Amanda and I went to the Farm To Table Convention?  Well between that and a networking event that she♥ and I attended at Chatham, we had a lot of options regarding what CSA to chose from.

After meeting with so many different growers and comparing all the variables between packages, we♥ finally committed to Clarion River Organics!

A lot of people asked us, what factors affected our decision?

1.  The price:  The full share is $25/week.  The half share is $15/week.  The CSA runs for 22 weeks, which means we♥ will be spending $550 for all of our locally grown, organic produce.  We pick-up our share in the South Side, which is only 5 miles away from the house.  That saves us the gas we would have to spend driving to the farm (yeah, right)!

2.  The options:  Clarion River Organics allows you to add on bread and eggs to your order!  Not all CSAs have this option.  We added eggs:

3.  The portions:  Each week, we were told to expect 6-10 different items.  Here is the photo which we are provided with in our “what to expect email”:

We received:

Pretty happy with what we received, its just exactly what I thought we were going to get and it has been the perfect portion for us throughout the week. Since its early in the season, we received corn flour instead of a fruit or veg.  This was a pleasant surprise!

I would have never purchased corn flour in the store, but now I get to experiment with it AND feel satisfied in knowing that its locally.

4.  The people:  The way these guys handle CSA members is great!  Each time I was confused about something, it was addressed and cleared up right away!  They send a weekly newletter letting you know what’s happening in the 10 CSA farm participants, specs on the vegetables, recipes, etc.  The volunteers at the pick-up location are really nice and helpful as well (we pick up in South Side).  The whole experience has really opened my eyes to new kinds of dishes.

BONUS: Since we are not huge veggie eaters, this is a way that we have been integrating more SOLE food into our day to day meals.  AND we are creating urban partnerships with regional farmers who strengthen our food system.  I am 100% happy with our choice!

Things I’ve Learned:  Collard Greens are huge!  There are these things called garlic scapes.  I have to return my CSA bags next week – I took mine home by accident!  Its cool to try something out of your comfort zone.  There are things that grow in my community that I never knew existed.

 

Have you ever thought of joining a CSA?  Did you?

What affected your decisions to join/not join?

In Memory on Memorial Day

29 May

I don’t have anything fantastical to report from Memorial Day.

To be honest, I was completely exhausted from our trip and then we had to drive an additional hour to visit my parents on Monday.

Because it was Memorial Day, I decided to make one of my grandmother (Bubba)’s pies.

Strawberry Pie.

I don’t have any specific memory of this pie, like I do many of her other desserts, but it felt appropriate for Memorial Day.  Both in significance, season and stars & stripes.

I’ve spoken about my grandmother before here, and it is so special to me that I am able to share her love of cooking on a day created to remember loved ones who have moved on. ♥

This pie is so simple and I know I didn’t do it justice.  I know what I did wrong, easily fixable for my next attempt.

First, combine in a saucepan:

Keep stirring it until it gets thick and syrupy:

While the filling is becoming delicious, put 4 cups of sliced strawberries into a pie crust.

I used a shortbread pre-made crust because I had absolutely no desire to make a crust Monday morning.

After my filling was done, I poured it over the pie crust and popped it in the fridge to set.

In my rush, I forgot to grab a pack of 2 pie crusts and with an impatient brother lurking around I knew we needed to make this pie happen.  Use your discretion on picking the right size receptacle for your ooey goodness – and don’t let children peer pressure you into “just dumping it all” in.

The pie didn’t have time to set (which would’ve taken a week or so based on the size), unfortunately.  We wanted to scarf it down long before it was ready.

OOPS.

No complaints here!  Next time, my pie will stay together – just you wait.  🙂  The fact that it didn’t turn out kind of makes me smile, because if you knew Bubba – she wasn’t the type of woman to let one failure stop her from success.

I hope that you all got to spend Memorial Day with the ones you love, remembering all the ones who’ve come before.

And enjoy some Strawberry Pie Soup

%d bloggers like this: