Friday, April 15, 2011

New recipe for asparagus

1 lb pizza dough at room temperature (bread machine recipe below)
Cornmeal for the baking sheets
1 lb. asparagus, halved crosswise & lengthwise
5 oz cremni or button mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups ricotta
1/2 cup grated Parmesan (2 oz) (get the real cheese not the fake)
3 Tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt & black pepper
2 cups baby arugula
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Heat oven to 400.  Shape the dough into four rounds & place
on 2 cornmeal-dusted baking sheets

Dividing evenly, top the dough with the asparagus, mushrooms
and garlic, then the ricotta, Parmesan and 2 tablespoons of the
oil.  Season with 3/4 teaspoon salt& 1/4 teaspoon pepper.  Bake, switching the pans halfway trough until the crust is
golden brown and crisp.  25 to 30 minutes.

Meanwhile in a medium bowl, toss the arugula with the lemon juice, the remaining
tablespoon of oil, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper.  Top the pizzas with the
arugula just before serving.

Bread Machine Pizza Dough
1 cup water
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1/3 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon sugar
3 cups Bread Flour
1 1/2 teas yeast
3 Tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
3/4 teas. sweet basil

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Plant before or after a rain

Tomorrow is April 15th, my personal deadline for planting green beans and corn.  I also have a few onions and potatoes that still need to be planted. 

About three weeks ago, Dan tilled the garden; then he went over it again today.  It is a beautiful bed.  My debate today was whether to plant with a nearly 100% chance of rain this evening or wait until afterwards.

When I talked to my Dad in years past about this dilemma,  he said with a garden it might be best to wait until after a rain, especially if the soil is worked up.  The rain settles the soil for better germination I suppose.

The on line gardening forums say to plant before a rain.  But, we all respect our parents advice so I didn’t plant.

So far it hasn’t rained much so I am sure I will be able to get in the garden fairly soon.  So, it probably won’t make much difference.   In the end, the best time to plant might be a time when the warmth of the sun gets to the seeds the quickest. 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Stay at home for colorful wildflowers

We don’t have blue bonnets or blooming dog woods, but we have plenty of color around here.  These are all blooming in our yard right now.

Monday, April 11, 2011

The neighborhood is changing…or not

When we first moved to this area, it was very rural.  In the past 30 plus years, it has become more populated.  Even though we like our neighbors, we like our space.

Yesterday, over a hundred acres sold across the road from us.  What a relief that it was purchased by a couple who are keeping it undeveloped pasture.  There were rumors that someone was looking at it who wanted to “break it up” into lots for homes.  In a more upward housing market, that might have happened.  As it is, we are staying rural.  Last night we had a impromptu neighborhood get-together in our barn to celebrate.

The other change in the neighborhood is the pastor at our local church.  To our surprise, the new minister is Nancy Boyda, former 2nd district congresswoman from Kansas.  She is currently in seminary and will simultaneously serve Stull UMC.  Despite it’s rural location, Stull is a modern, hard working and dedicated church which I feel will profit from her skills and dedication.  Dan and I will certainly miss Pastor Andrew Mitchell.  He is moving on to a doctoral program in another state.  We wish him well.

Also, I’ve combined all the Texas trip into one post.