Category Archives: Edibles

Plant Veggie Starts Now!

Now is a great time to plant veggies starts for the fall and winter garden in the Pacific Northwest. We have hand selected these varieties as favorites for our island climate. All fresh and locally grown:

Kale: Dwarf Blue Curled, Red Russian, Nero di Toscana, and more
Cabbage: Red and Golden Acre,
Broccoli: Packman, DeCicco (Italian Heirloom)
Swiss Chard: Rainbow, Bright Lights, Neon Glow
Spinach: Bloomsdale, Bordeaux
Lettuces: Buttercrunch, Salad Bowl, New Red Fire, Five Star, Flashy Trout Back and more
Beets: Bulls Blood, Chioggia, Touchstone Gold,
Peas: Early Frosty, Gray Sugar

…Cauliflower, Bok Choy, Leeks, Arugula, mixed greens and more!
veggie starts

 

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Applejack Chicken

With the annual Apple Day and Mutt Strut fast approaching, I thought it would be fun to share one of my favorite apple recipes. I call it Applejack chicken as a flavor tribute, not because I use hard cider to make it…though maybe I will try that at some point. The deglazing and cooking liquid contains apple juice, which is then concentrated to make a sauce…ending up with one yummy apple-flavored chicken!

Here we go:

1 whole chicken, cleaned, giblets removed
3 pieces of maple flavored bacon
1 large yellow onion diced
3 carrots, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
2 cups apple juice
2 cups water
2 T fennel seed
4 bay leaves
salt and pepper
toothpicks

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place dutch oven on the stove over medium high heat, add a drizzle of olive oil. While heating, cut bacon into half inch segments, drop into pan. Cook bacon until crisp, remove and drain on paper towel. The sugar from the maple bacon can burn more easily, so keep an eye out for potential bacon-cooking drama.

Once bacon is removed, add onion, carrots and fennel seeds. Saute for a few minutes, then add apple juice and bay leaves. Let the pan deglaze while you are preparing the chicken.

If you haven’t already, take a couple of paper towels and pat the chicken dry…makes for easier chicken wrangling. Next, separate the skin of the breast from the meat by gently sliding your hand between the two, resulting in a pocket. Try not to break the skin. Next, take the bacon pieces and sliced garlic and slip it into the pocket. Try to spread it evenly. Once you are finished, pull the skin closed, anchoring with a toothpick or two.

Give the mixture in the Dutch oven a stir, then place the chicken right on top. Add enough water to bring the fluid level up to the middle of the drumsticks. Bring to a boil, add lid and pop into the oven for 45 minutes.

After 45 minutes, remove lid and baste chicken with juices. Cook chicken for an additional 45 minutes with the lid removed, basting every 15 minutes. **Your cooking time will vary dependent upon the size of the chicken. The meat in the thickest part of the thigh should register 165 to 170 degrees.

When chicken is done, remove from pan for carving. Place pan on the stove over high heat to reduce cooking liquid for sauce. If you like, you can first pour the liquid into a gravy separator, which will help remove excess oil. Serve chicken with sauce drizzled over the top.

Post written by Jean Ann Van Krevelen, Author of Grocery Gardening, www.gardenertofarmer.net

Planting Edibles for Fall and Spring Harvest

August is a great time of year to plant edibles for fall and next spring’s harvest. If you’ve saved some of your seed packets from spring, now’s the time to pull them out. Sort through and remove any crops that require heat (tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, squash, etc). Set those aside for next year. Peruse through your cool season edibles and see what you have available to plant. Don’t forget that we have our fall and winter veggie seeds, as well as lots of fresh veggie starts ready to be planted.

Generally, you can plant any cool season crop that has a 60-day from seed harvest. This includes many greens and radishes. You can also sow many crops that need cooler weather to germinate. These plants will start growing this fall and finish up in spring. It’s a great way to get a head start on next year’s garden and reduce the amount of time you’ll spend planting in spring rains.

Here are a few ideas for your edible garden:

  • Cilantro
  • Chervil
  • Green onions
  • Overwintering onions
  • Broccoli raab
  • Chinese cabbage
  • Cress
  • Radish
  • Turnips
  • Chard, kale, mustards, oriental greens, spinach
  • Chicory, endive, escarole,
  • Lettuce, arugula, corn salad, miner’s lettuce
  • Saffron crocus

In the Pacific Northwest, we have mild enough winters that many of these crops can be grown in containers, too. This makes harvesting a snap, despite our fall rains.

Insta-Garden: Just Add Water!

Yes, even those of us who don’t have time to create our own edible gardens can harvest tasty, home-grown veggies. Try out our insta-garden…here’s a look at Elea’s BFG signature pre-planted combos. Try “The Home Tea Shop”, “Asian Spicy Stir-fry”, or “Cut and Come Again” salad blends. Super cute, super affordable and perfect for limited space gardens. Also, consider adding a container full of blooming annuals to increase visual impact.

Just Add Water to these Tasty Combinations

It’s Not Too Late to Plant Peas!

We’re receiving loads of plants every day now and the nursery is busting at the seams! It is definitely time to get those seed potatoes in the ground before we run out and pea planting season is drawing to a close. There’s still time to plant the Sugar Snaps. We have heaps of organic veggie starts and Sam has been delivering the fresh grown color from right up the road at Plum Hill. The weather is gorgeous and will continue through the week end. It’s time to have fun in the garden!