Monday, August 31, 2009

Dirty Little Secrets

Yeah I got them - my dirty little secrets. I have found through those damn challenges that I can go up to a month with out washing my bath towels. Of course at the end of the month, they are likely to stand up on their own and attack me. But I figure it saves at least two loads of laundry a month. There is no secret to keeping them fresh- just make sure you hang them up to dry (that's what those towel racks are for). I figure jeeze, I am just using them to dry my already clean body. Now Romeo's towel is a different story. But unlike the pug, you don't get a ton of hair after giving him a bath so I might just hang his towel up and let it dry for his next bath as well. Sure saves on laundry and replacing towels- of course I haven't bought a new towel in years as folks give them to me for Christmas, birthdays what have you. And I always take my mom's old towels when she is ready to get rid of them. Of course she gets mad about my not washing towels every time I use one as when because when I was a teenager I wouldn't re-use a towel- ever. Funny how things change when we grow up and out of our parents houses (And we have to do our own laundry).

So what dirty little "green" secrets does everyone else have that would be considered slightly eccentric?

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Nothing Special- Weekly Challenge Update

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge- Year two, week 17

1. Plant something: Some turnips; kale, leeks, lettuce, salad greens, radishes
2. Harvest something: Turnip, tomatoes, Salad greens, Blackberries, Banana Peppers
Community garden- summer squash, chard, peas, tomatoes 3 pounds to the food bank
3. Preserve something: Pickled cherry tomatoes with raisins,
4. Reduce Waste (recycle, reuse, reduce, repair or compost something): Saved two coffee canisters for door prize tickets and car show balloting; a couple of pop bottles from work for bell cloches and funnels for some of the self watering planters (Make it easier to fill them from hose) Bought a new PVC Free Shower curtain. My old one will be used as a truck tarp- That will be me driving down the road with the tarp with surfboards on it!
5.Preperation and Storage: Pickled Cherry tomatoes with raisins
6. Build Community Food Systems: Took three pounds of produce from the community garden to the food bank; did my watering day at the community garden,
7. Eat the Food (cook or eat something new)- Double stuffed Banana French Toast; Pickled Cherry Tomatoes; Mascarpone and Blackberry Stuffed French Toast

Melinda’s Growing Challenge: My watermelon plants have baby watermelons!!!! *&^%$## Broccoli update- Have some small heads of broccoli- ridiculously small heads. Saved some pea seeds.

Meat Free Mondays: Breakfast- cup of coffee and a muffin from Burien Press;
Lunch- Walked to the store at work and had a bagel with crème cheese and
some chips; Dinner- Omelet; Snacks- had some kettle corn, no sugar Ice cream
Buy Nothing Challenge - August 2009
Crunchy’s Buy Nothing Challenge: OK.I bought a new shower curtain. I really needed one and got a PVC free one at Ikea. For 3.50. The old one, holes and all, will be used as a tarp to cover my load when hauling to the dump or bringing building supplies home. Other than that nothing except for muffins and coffee at the espresso shop, a bagel and cream cheese and some chip for lunch on Monday, and a can of chili on Wednesday. Oh yeah a hot dog and chips at the Farmers’ Market on Thursday. Oh and paid my fines to the King county library and became an upstanding card carrying member!

BURIEN PRESS- A real community coffee shop

There's alot of talk about Starbucks opening Stealth Starbuck coffee shops in and around Seattle- Nice little community places hiding the Starbucks logo and pretending they are local owned community coffee shops. Well, Starbucks has nothing on Burien press. And maybe one or two things to learn from them!

Just thought you folks would like to see the coffee shop I am always talking about. Burien Press opened in downtown Burien, across from the town square, at 423 SW 152nd Street, in Burien.
Originally, the building housed a tatoo parlor! They are an old school espresso/coffee shop featuring Hand made espresso drinks. No Computer Driven machines here, folks. They also feature local made pastries and sandwiches. The atmosphere is real, all hand done by the owner, featuring a cool deck on the back of the building. The furnishings are unique as well, especially the table made of plumbing fittings. Friendly staff, and great magazines, a welcome respite in the heart of my fair city.

The backporch - hours of meditation and quiet in Rob's world!
Nice furnishings, nice location

The table base is made out of Plumbing Fittings!

Thursday, August 27, 2009


"Sleeping Naked Is Green: How an Eco-Cynic Unplugged Her Fridge, Sold Her Car, and Found Love in 366 Days" By Vanessa Farquharson

I picked up on Vanessa Farquharson's book When Crunchy, the School marm gave us an assignment to read it for her book club. I had read Vanessa's Blog "Green as a Thistle" a few times. But had I known what a sense of humor she has, would have read it more frequently. I chuckled out loud as I read about her antics in trying one new green change in her life for a year, Especially at her sister's attitude with her new green lifestyle. It sounds like Vanessa and I have a lot in common, with her Dr. Mother, (My mom is a RN), snotty little sister (I have many snotty cousins). I even got interested in her love life. Silly, I know, but I really got into this book. Especially funny is her fascination with Compostable Toilets, mentioned a few times throughout the book.
Honestly when I got the book I was afraid it was another "how to be green" book, (Like the Green Book) and prepared myself for a barrage of tutorials on using canvas bags and CFL lights. But there weren't any. But Vanessa really writes well and keeps you hooked on the subject. Well written and hard to put down I strongly recommend "Sleeping Naked Is Green". I am now waiting for the movie starring Amy Adams. UPDATE:For clarification- there isn't a movie coming out but if there was I bet it would star Amy Adams!
You can find Vanessa's book at Amazon and at Powells


This post is in support of Chile's Park the Car Challenge. A challenge I am not registered for, as I need to drive to work. But I thought I would relate an experience I had to day PARKING THE CAR FOR CHILI. And Yes, I know. Chile is spelled with an "E" at the end not an "I". But read on:
Well today at work I had planned to have delicious, nutritious chili dogs for lunch. I got my lunch ready, got the hot dogs out. Got the buns out. I forgot to bring my can of Vegetarian Chili. So now what? Recently I have been reading Chile's Blog about parking the car. So I thought - I
have three good options- Get in my car and go to 7-11 and get a can of chili. 2- Go in my car , go to Mikes Gourmet Hot Dogs and get the king of all Chili Dogs 3- Ride my Work Bike to the store- bad idea as my work bike is in need of maintenance and truthfully I only use it when I don't have a van or electric go cart which is one advantage to cutting our crew from 9 to 3- I always have one or the other. 4- Screw 1, 2 and 3- Walk to the corner convenience store (About 1/2 mile from the front door at work. Ms.Chile, who rides her bike Hunnerts of miles a week with no booster, would be so proud of me for parking the car, yet disgusted at me for eating and loving Chili Dogs. So anyway I decided to park the car and go for a quick little walk. The walk takes me to a short cut through "springbrook trail park",Were a couple of years ago a rabbit dashed out and bit me. The only thing I have in common with Jimmy Carter- Unprovoked Rabbit attacks. Or I would have had to walk thorught the trail if they were not widening Interstate 405 to keep the citizens in Bellevue (the city in Washington, not the Famous Mental Hospital in New York - though I can't always tell the difference) happy. Of course Road contruction workers make me nervous as well, a bad experience I had as a kid and got into a F.U.! F.U.! Argument with one (Needless to say it was a case of him comparing me to Mama Cass - whom I loved- and saying that "Be Careful- Mama Cass choked on a sandwich"- to which my reply was something like "Don't be stupid your whole life, you worthless motherfucker" Even as a kid I had a mouth that my dad thought would get me killed before I was 21.)
Anyway I noticed with amazement how much bottled water and Gatorade these guys drink- And even more amazement when I saw they picked up every one of their empties. They had a box just for empty bottles and cans! Of course when I got to the store, I found I had forgotten my bag in the car, so I grabbed a can of chili and went to the register. $1.99 the clerk said. I paid him and of course he said- "Wanna bag?". Yes I did, but told him No I was fine. So there I go off back to work looking a tad bit like Mr. Magoo with my can of chili in one hand. Down the street.I had survived the walk, The construction workers, and the republican rabbits. Happy to be back at work, nuking my chili and my wienies. I parked the car. I survived. I ate Chili Dogs. Life is Good. Doesn't seem like a bad thing to once in awhile to hoof it.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Viva La Toast Francais

I love french toast. It is perfect for a meal late at night when I get home. And now I have discovered Stuffed French Toast. In addition to Banana And Peanut Butter Stuffed French Toast, I have added Mascarpone and Blackberry Stuffed French Toast along with PB & J Stuffed French Toast to my french toast repertoire, both excellent ways to use fresh picked berries and jam made right in my kitchen. IHOP? I got your IHOP right here!

1 egg
2 tablespoons milk
1 dash vanilla extract
1/2 cup Marscopone cheese
1/2 cup of berries (any berry- I used blackberries)
2 slices bread (I prefer to use store bought sliced french)
2 tablespoons butter
1 tsp. Rum extract or 2 oz. of rum

In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg, milk,vanilla rum extract/rum together.In another bowl mix the marscapone and berries together.
Spread generous amount of cheese/berry mixture on top of each slice of bread. Place the other slice of bread on top of the first, to make a "sandwich".
In a skillet or frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Dip the sandwich into the egg mixture and place in the heated skillet. Cook until brown on both sides. Serve hot. If you can't find marscapone cheese, you can use ricotta or just make your own marscapone, following the crunchy ones recipe- very easy to make and you will love it.

1 egg
2 tablespoons milk
1 dash vanilla extract
1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter
1 Tablespoon Jam Or Jelly
2 slices bread
2 tablespoons butter
1 tsp. Rum extract or 2 oz. of rum

In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg, milk,vanilla rum extract/rum together.
Spread 1 tablespoon of peanut butter on top of one slice of bread. Spread the jam on the other slice of bread- Place the other slice of bread on top of the first, to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
In a skillet or frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Dip the sandwich into the egg mixture and place in the heated skillet. Cook until brown on both sides. Serve hot.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Condo Blues Flip Flops for Free!

I can has flip flops?

Condo Blues has a giveaway on her blog for a pair of enviromentally friendly flip flops or as I call them "Thongs" for feet. Or as my norwegian ancestors called them "TONGS". Anyway way no matter what you call them, get over to Condo Blues and win a pair!


I ALMOST CALL THIS HEAVEN ON A PLATE! Delicous on a cold morning or for a sweet late nighttime dinner, I usually top with No Sugar Imitation Maple syrup, but tonight I thought No Sugar Caramel Dessert topping sounded kinda good. I made the call! It was good.

1 egg
2 tablespoons milk
1 dash vanilla extract
2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
2 slices bread
1 small banana, sliced
2 tablespoons butter
1 tsp. Rum extract or 2 oz. of rum

In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg, milk,vanilla rum extract/rum together.
Spread 1 tablespoon of peanut butter on top of each slice of bread. Place the banana slices on top of one of the slices of bread. Place the other slice of bread on top of the first, to make a peanut butter and banana sandwich.
In a skillet or frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Dip the sandwich into the egg mixture and place in the heated skillet. Cook until brown on both sides. Serve hot.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

How lazy can I be? The Weekly Challenge Update

Just trying to rest- worked the second weekend in a row, Should have all the weekends off next month (YAY) So I didn't get too much done this week. Oh Well!

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge- Year two, week 16

1. Plant something: Radish seeds
2. Harvest something: Tomatoes, Cucmbers frorm my garden; Zucchini, eggplant, Swiss Chard and a cucumber from the community garden
3. Preserve something:
4. Reduce Waste (recycle, reuse, reduce, repair or compost something): No fancy hacks or nothing, just composted kitchen items, recycled trash
5. Preparation and Storage: Nothing
6. Build Community Food Systems: Took some zucchini, eggplant, Swiss Chard and a cucumber to the food bank from the community garden; attended a community garden planning meeting on where/what to do next (the B/IAS is going away in December).
7. Eat the Food (cook or eat something new)- Tzatziki with Lamb-Burgers

Melinda’s Growing Challenge: Just resting between onslaught of plums and tomatoes. Nothing new to report

Meat Free Mondays: Breakfast- Vegan brownie and coffee from Burien Press. Lunch was a green salad with boiled eggs. Dinner was some deep fried mushrooms, apple and cheese.

Crunchy’s Buy Nothing Challenge: I must confess to buying coffee and pastry almost everyday at Burien Press... but local and vegan so I don't mind... as for other purchases... well I didn't make any 'cepting for car club trophies (stain and such) but I will be reimbursed for those. That and I bought the stain on closeout for 1.47. Am getting up tomorrow to buy some shirts at Thrift Stores for work so.... we'll see how I do. (Hard to go to thrift stores without checking out other items I may like for furniture hacks and artsy crap).

Thursday, August 20, 2009


I have found it! About a year or so ago Ms. Beth was wondering how to get a commuter mug with no plastic whatsoever. At that time I came up with how to make one out of a Canning jar/mug. One of my first posts on my DIY page. But, Not being one to give up, I have found one! This pricey Titanium mug for hikers. It doubles a a camp pot so you can cook with it. The only problem is it does come with a mesh storage bag, And Beth's cat "Soots" loves to nom plastic. But that can be reused. Hopefully before "Soots" eats it. Muggsly
And unlike my beloved Muggsly, the lid is made of titanium/metal as well. As for me, I am saving the $35 and keeping with Muggsly, but if you look long enough you can find what you want! And now I know there is a replacement for Muggsly. Just kidding Muggsly. I would never replace you! (And no, I haven't been obsessing for over a year on finding a mug- I just happened to be "windows" shopping REI and came across it, and remembered Beth needed a mug!)

Eat Local

I was at the Farmer's Market today, and one of my favorite vendors Eat Local, was there and she told me they are opening a store here in Burien! So now when localvores want some take out that's made from local and organic food, they don't have to wait for the Farmers' Market or go to Queen Anne Hill. Eat Local has an impressive menu of tasty things, from Coq au Vin to Buffalo Stew, and cookies to crackers that rival my beloved Ak-Mak. they are opening next month! Can't Wait.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Pickled Fennel and Pickled Onions

2 pickling techniques! I was reading my new issue of "Ready Made" magazine, found it pretty boring, except for an article on Pickling.
Well I picked the last of the fennel today so tonight I made another jar of pickled fennel. Supposedly they should be pickled with oranges but not having any I pickled them with Walla Walla Sweet Onions (the worlds greatest Table Onion), and the other jar I pickled "Burgermaster"Purple Onions with some garlic cloves. The spices I used were dill seed, whole black peppercorns, some chile powder and some ground cumin. here is the recipe I used:

PICKLE ANYTHING from Ready Made Magazine
1 clean pint jar with lid
1 1/2 cup of Vegetables or fruit , cut into small slices or chunks
1 cup of White Wine Vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons of kosher salt
Herbs (about 2 tbsp, chopped or a few sprigs) and spices (About 1 TBSP)

Blanche your choice of veggies, for 1 -3 Minutes, Remove veggies and give them an Ice bath (put in a bowl of ice water). Placed Blanched vegetables and/or raw fruit into the jar with Vinegar, salt, herbs and spices. Cover tightly and enjoy within a week.

FRESH PACK TECHNIQUE - This is the method I used
1 clean pint jar with lid
1 1/2 cup of Vegetables or fruit , cut into small slices or chunks
1 cup of White Wine Vinegar
1/2 cup of sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons of kosher salt
Herbs (about 2 tbsp, chopped or a few sprigs) and spices (About 1 TBSP)
Place your chosen fruit, vegetables, herbs and spices in the jar. Cover and shake Gently to mix - uncover and in a small saucepan bring vinegar, sugar, and salt to a boil. Boil for 1 minute, and then pour over the raw ingredients.Cover loosely with the lid. Allow to cool.
Cover tightly and Refrigerate for up to a week.

Now of course this is not long term preservation, but allows you to keep things for a couple of weeks or so. And a sure fire way to get a blast with your sandwiches or cheese platters and a great change of pace from plain old pickles!

Monday, August 17, 2009

So You Are having a Dinner Party?

Now for a meme of a different variety: A friend emailed me this questionnaire:

You are having a dinner party, and you can invite any 4 couples- who do you invite?
JImmy and Rosylyn Carter- I just want to know how they stay so active in their charity work for Habitat for Humanity.
Paul and Julia Child- Intimidated? Me? Never and besides she can help with the hollandaise
Ed Begley Jr. And Rachelle Carson Begley- My favorite Reality Show Couple
Gene Simmons and Shannon Tweed- My other favorite Reality Show couple. Besides it would make my Kiss Head cousin David Jealous.

2- What do you serve?
Asparagus with hollandaise sauce (duhh why do you think I Invited Julia and Paul?)

Beef Wellington (Thought I was going with beef bourguignon? Hah. Not with Ms. Child present- And a veggie burger-Wellington just for Ed!

Mashed Potatoes

3- What Wine do you serve?
Since I don't drink- my guests will get Three Buck Chuck

4. What's for dessert?
Lammington Cake from Australian Pie Company

Now your turn: Who do you invite to your dinner party?

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Not an exciting week- The Weekly Challenge Update

Not much happened this week- well not entirely true- did get to ride the new light rail here in Seattle, twice! And the usual work for challenges:

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge- Year two, week 16

1. Plant something: Transplanted lettuce starts and Dutch Corn salad starts into larger growing pots, planted radishes
2. Harvest something: My garden-Some baby lettuce and some Baby Dutch corn salad, Tomatoes, some greens, hot cherry peppers; fennel; Community Garden: Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Basil, Chives, Radishes
3. Preserve something: Pickled fennel (found recipe in Ready Made magazine);
4. Reduce Waste (recycle, reuse, reduce, repair or compost something): Turned the compost pile, did the usual recycling and composting
5. Preparation and Storage: Gathered up seeds I have collected from plants and from order and sorting and put into a metal storage box, Ordered some seeds for fall garden from company over in Ellensburg, WA
6. Build Community Food Systems: From Community Garden to food bank- donated about 2.5 pounds of Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Basil, Chives, Radishes; did my watering day at the community garden; Attended a SUBU meeting
7. Eat the Food (cook or eat something new)- Omelet with marinated grilled vegetables, Broiled Tomatoes with Provolone, Ate and Used Leek Flower Blossoms in salad and omelet.

Melinda’s Growing Challenge: Nothing new to report!

Meat Free Mondays: Breakfast- Vegan brownie and coffee from Burien Press. Lunch- Veggie burger patty and mac and cheese; Lunch at work- Tzatziki with Crackers, Dinner Omelet with mushrooms; Dessert apple slices w/ peanut butter

Buy Nothing Challenge - August 2009

Crunchy’s Buy Nothing Challenge: Ordered seeds from Irish Eyes Seed company in Ellensburg, WA. At least local (sort of- and used to grow food), Coffee and pastry almost every morning from Burien Press. And I bought Romeo an antler chew. Lunch out twice this week, but only paid once. The other was bought for me!

Taking a Look at the Vertical Garden

Thought I would take a peek at how the vertical garden was doing. As you can see things are sprouting up! I had to use a catch for the water when watering it, so I thought why not put a planter at the bottom to catch the water going through the vertical planter? Works out great- I think if I where to do anything different, I would use Coco Coir instead of soil or a good mix of potting soil and Coco Coir to keep in the water. I have this hanging on the south wall of the house, in a spot that gets some sun and mostly shade as it is full of plants like mustard greens and lettuce- don’t want them babies to start bolting!
Looky here- the Nasturtiums are peeking out of their pockets!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Deer antler Dog Chews and WTF Whole Foods?

Wow a rave and a rant in the same post. Must be a slow news day!

Today I did some walking. And some shopping. Yes Ms. Chicken, you heard me- I shopped. I was reading the Raise a green Dog blog, today she had a review on Buckarooz Deer Antler Chews for dogs. At first you might think Gross! But Gross is Bull "Pizzles". Yep. Penises. For dogs to chew on. Given the choice I walked up to the Mud Bay Grainery and bought an antler. Now here is the thing before you all call me Bambi's Mommy Killer- Buckaroos are just a sustainable product- turns out that the Bucks drop their horns naturally. Just waiting their for some dumass to pick them up. And another Dumass to walk to the pet store just to buy them. And the advantage to Buckaroos are:
•the antlers are filled with marrow high in calcium and phosphorous
•they're odorless
•they can last up to a month
•the antlers are tested for bacteria, chemicals and contaminants
•the antlers are all from free-ranging white tail deer, mule deer and elk in the US
•the only processing involves cutting the antlers to size and packaging
•all the antlers are dropped naturally (deer are not killed)

So I feel that is one green choice for Romeo.

Now for the other issue-

Batter Blaster - It's Organic- except for the packaging!

Martin and I took the Light rail up to the Westlake Center, then rode the S.L.U.T. (South Lake Union Trolley) to the Whole Foods for lunch and so I could buy some Preserve Razor Blades and some Dr. Bonner's Tea Tree Oil Soap. While there, I saw this new product called "Batter Blaster". WTF Whole Foods? You going the way of Trader Joe's? Pancake Batter in a spray can? Cheese-in-a-can I understand, but is America to lazy to mix up some Bisquick and make pancakes? I sense a big product FAIL here. Of course Bisquick is not with out sin- they have the Bisquick in a bottle that you just add water to to make pancakes. Really are we getting that lazy America? Sheeze. I thought I was in Whole Foods, not Safeway.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Check Your Carbon Footprint

As a service to the readers of this blog, I have installed a Carbon Footprint Calculator for your use and enjoyment- It is also on the side blog so you can check your footprint anytime! Have fun!

Oh yeah here is my Footprint:

So what is everybody else's "footprint"?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Using the Leek Flower

Someone gave me some leek flowers. And said they are good in salad. Well they were right. I made a mixed salad of some greens, lettuce and leek flowers. Then I put some on an omelet in place of parsley(Yes I am getting a tad bit obsessed with omelette's, unfortunately for my cholesterol), Who knew leek flowers would be so good! According to the food museum, elephant garlic is a leek! Next time or rather the first time I attempt to grow leeks, I am going to let some flower not only for the showy flowers for seeds, but the great tasting buds as well.

Leek Blossom Salad

a handful of leek flower buds
some Mustard greens
some lettuce

Mix the lettuce and the greens, top with the leek flower buds- use a nice vinaigrette for dressing.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Riding the Rails

I had a great day I went in to work early as I had tickets to the Mariners (You know the Baseball Team in Seattle). The tickets were a bonus from work. I decided to try the NEW Light Rail system to get there. The first challenge (or What I thought would be) is the ticket system. They have had trouble with it freezing up and such. I went up to the Kiosk and no problems! Usually if there is a computer system involved I have a host of troubles the first time. I purchased a round trip ticket to Stadium Station- the name of the station where the Safeco Field ( Mariners) and Qwest Field (Seahawks) are. The ride was smooth and quick- less than fifteen minutes-a perfect evening for baseball- not too hot, no rain and a Mariners Win- The M's beat the dreaded White Sox 1-0 in 14 innings!

Nice new Clean Train cars

Nice scenery!

You Even get Life Advice!

A little video to give you a taste of the ride!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Bon Apetit!

Broiled Tomato w/ Provolone. Yes that is my attempt at an omelette ala Julia Child.

I found this recipe at, Of course I had to try it with a little Rob Flair. Just can't leave things alone. I know now I should have never seen Julie/Julia. Oh well. At least I can boil a live lobster. Without screaming. Any way, may I present Broiled tomatoes with provolone, along with a video of Julia Child on how to prepare a French omelette the correct way. At least she doesn't poo poo my Microwave omelette pan. (actually I don't think Microwaves were that common when "The French Chef" was on TV). Just don't mistake me for Amy Adams. I am much prettier.

Makes 6 servings


3 large salad tomatoes
3 large garlic cloves, cut lengthwise into slivers
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, or 2 teaspoons dried rosemary leaves
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
6 slices of good provolone cheese

Heat broiler to 500ºF. Cut the tomatoes crosswise in half and place them, cut-side up, on a broiling pan or shallow baking pan. Stick the garlic slivers into the tomatoes. Sprinkle with the rosemary, salt, and a few grinds of pepper. Drizzle with the oil. Top with a slice of provolone cheese. Broil about 3 inches from the heat for 10 to 15 minutes or just until the tomatoes release their juices and the garlic and cheese begins to brown. Spoon the pan juices over the tomatoes before serving.

Serve as a side dish for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Recipe- Garden Skewers

I forgot to add the recipe for Garden Skewers in my last post. I made these skewers for the garden party, along with Abbey's Tzatziki with "Ak mak" crackers

Marinated Veggie Skewers
Soak 10-12 Bambo skewers in water for at least half an hour.

1 Summer squash
1 lb of crimini mushrooms or button (regular) mushrooms will work as well
10- 12 Cherry Tomatoes
1 red pepper
1 green bell pepper
1 bottle of Italian Salad dressing or make your own (recipe follows)

Slice the Summer squash into 1/2 " slices. Slice the bell peppers into quarters then eigths. Then slice each strip of bell pepper into half. Take your skewers and put on a green bell pepper piece, the a cherry tomato, then a mushroom, then a squash slice, then a red bell pepper piece. I like to keep the amopunt of veggies on the skewer small, makes it easier to handle. Then put all in a bowl or roasting pan and pour the salad dressing over, let marinate for at least a half an hour. Then cook on a hot grille, about 5 minutes and turn over. 5 more minutes and done! Makes 10-12 Skewers.


2/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. sugar or splenda

Combine in screw top jar. Shake well. Chill in refrigerator. Before serving, beat and shake thoroughly.

Compost and Garden Parties- The Weekly Challenge Update

Sharon's Independence Days Challenge- Year two, week 15

1. Plant something: My garden-
2. Harvest something: 9 pounds of PLUMS; 2 pounds of TOMATOES;
3. Harvest Something From the Victory Garden for the Food bank- 2 pounds of Chard,1 pound of romaine lettuce,¼ pound of Jalapeno Peppers, ¼ pound of Basil, ½ pound Icicle Radish
4. Preserve something: More Basil Cubes, Dehydrated some banana chips and Cantaloupe slices.

5. Reduce Waste (recycle, reuse, reduce, repair or compost something): Made a rolling Bar out of an old A/V cart., Took the top (seat part) od a wicker stool/table that had been damaged- gonna make a new side table out of it. Took my Compost Bin to deposit compostable waste in to the community garden party
6. Preparation and Storage: Am looking to add some new shelves to the pantry to help with canned goods and canning supplies. And no Ms. Crunchy I will not buy new ones- luckily I have some old shelving in the garage.
7. Build Community Food Systems: Took 4 pounds of veggies to the food bank from the community garden, Did my watering day at the community garden. Participated in the Community Garden Party.

8. Eat the Food (cook or eat something new)- Marinated Veggie Kabobs that I took to the garden party.

Melinda’s Growing Challenge: Seeds- I got seeds dammit! From the Broccoli that wont grow (one plant bolted and seeded during the hot weather) and -I don’t know if this counts, My Friends Rebecca and Bill gave me an envelope of Kale seeds from their garden. Oh yeah I am saving some tomato seeds from the varieties that I have grown fond of.

Meat Free Mondays: Breakfast was a raspberry muffin from Burien Press. Lunch was a veggie burger, some chips and some fruit. Dinner was more fruit and some cereal.

Crunchy’s Buy Nothing Challenge: Have not done any shopping per say except for projects. I made an outdoor bar table out of a stop sign and some plumbing pipe and fittings- only thing bought for this project was 4 wood screws, and technically I didn’t buy them I used my gift card I received from Ace Hardware. I can happily say for the first two days I only bought a 2” PVC Bushing, to make a fruit picker out of, Some clear plastic tubing (not counting as it is to make a sight gage for work out of) A thermometer for the Community garden. Oh yeah a replacement grill for the BBQ I made out of a steel truck wheel. I should get credit for that one though- the wheel came from Freecycle, the legs I had sitting around. The only part I bought was the grill. I would have looked at free cycle, but then what to do with rest of the BBQ? I thought it was more wasteful to take an old BBQ just for the grill, and then throw away the base- of course I could have taken it to the recycle center as scrap or made a funky planter out of it. I bought an Ikea office chair from Value Village for 4.99. Used it was. I am making a new office chair out of it. So I will probably have to by some wood and screws in the near future. Oh Yeah I bought a (broken) Wicker table/stool at VV the same day that will be come a new table when I add atray bought at a thrift store months ago to the top. Nothing new or boxy was bought by Rob this week. And I got two new books, “Depletion and Abundance” by Sharon Astyk and “Edible Estates: Attack on the Front Lawn ” By Fritz Haeg. But both where paid and ordered for before August 1st, and Edible Estates was a used book, so I doubt that counts against me. Every morning I have coffee and most mornings a muffin or pastry from Burien Press Espresso shop. Not apologizing for that- they are a new local shop and really nice folks and I want to see them succeed.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

"I went to a garden party!"

The SuBu Community Gardeners enjoyed an evening of food, drink and merriement at the Community Garden tonight. The Weather cooperated, Romeo (mostly) behaved himself. It made for a great party!

Sitting around talking!

People had a good time conversing about local sustainablity issues.

My Grill in Action for you food porn devotees! The skewers were Red Pepper, a Mexican Summer Squash, Crimini Mushrooms, Cherry Tomatoes, and Green Bell Peppers-Marinated in an Italian Dressing- all came from my garden or from the Farmer's market

There was no "agenda" per say. Just good conversation, eating and singing. I had made a promise NOT to channel Ricky Nelson so, no I did not sing "Garden Party". It was cool to have a low impact party, We used composting, recycling and any trash was hauled out by us.