Hotter Than….

Jalapenos. I love them. Especially fresh out of the garden.

That being said, we are currently trying to figure out what to do with all of them! I’m in pepper heaven.

They’ve been pickled, sauced, jammed, fried and added as toppings to almost everything I’ve eaten lately.

Two nights ago, I stumbled upon a brilliant idea… I don’t exactly know how I came up with this… or why I never thought of it before. Sigh, so much wasted time!

Jalapeno Hummus. It’s spicy, tangy, smooth, hot. Delicious. And I think I have a new food addiction… no big deal.
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You’re welcome.

Jalapeno Hummus:

Ingredients:

  • 1 large can chickpeas (you can also use dried and soak overnight)
  • 3 fresh jalapenos, seeds and stems removed
  • 2 cloves garlic (the bigger the better)
  • A pinch of sea salt-or to taste
  • A few cranks of crushed black pepper
  • About 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • Half a lemon
  • Roughly 2-3 tbsp. tahini

What to do:

Drain chickpeas and dump into food processor. Add in jalapenos, garlic, sea salt, pepper and olive oil (I roughly chopped my japs before doing this).

Process until the mixture is smooth, with some chunks. Squeeze in juice from half a lemon (and some zest if you’re feeling adventurous!) and tahini.  Blend until desired consistency.

Serve with your favorite snacking vegetables, crackers or as a sandwich spread. Hummus will last, sealed and refrigerated for a few days…if it lasts that long.

Happy Friday!


Another Fresh Picked Plate

I love local food… in case you haven’t figured that out yet…. today’s lunch is another example: tomato, beans and jalapenos from the garden, local cheese and greek yogurt and organic meatballs (I admit, these aren’t local… but they have all good ingredients). Check it out!

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What are you having for lunch?!


Another Friday…

I am happy to report that I was able to drag myself–and Farmer Ben!–out of bed for a run this morning. 3.34 miles and a photo. Look for it in next week’s GBN post! This series is off to a great start…and by great start I mean… I started!

Unfortunately my breakfast put a bit of a damper on my day…. I wasn’t able to make breakfast this morning so I was starving by the time I got to work…and I had no snacks in my desk. Le sigh. I was offered a cereal bar and was so hungry that I couldn’t say no. Beggars can’t be choosers. Lesson learned. Er… re-learned.

I thought I’d leave you with a few confessions from this week:

*I hit the snooze button this morning. Twice. Ben was NOT happy.

*I could really go for a BLT.

*I get incredibly grumpy if I skip breakfast… or lunch… or snack time. What I’m saying is, that if I’m hungry, I’m not  pleasant.

*I’m the weirdo that sits at their desk eating cherry tomatoes and cucumber slices. And enjoys it.

*I’ve been so happy eating salad, fresh herbs, swiss chard, potatoes, beets and beets greens, beans and peppers from the garden…but nothing compares to Farmer Ben’s tomatoes. Life on the food front has been amazing.

*I desperately want a coffee. In and around my mouth.

*This weekend, this needs to happens.

*I get to have lunch with LizDukes today and am incredibly excited!

*Farmer Ben made me smile with these pictures. (I have a soft spot for oddly shaped foods).

Can’t wait to try this!

Ditto!

Enjoy your weekend! Happy running…and eating!


It Just Tastes Better. Period.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; local food just tastes better! Especially if it’s from your own backyard. There’s just something about knowing exactly how your food is grown and being able to pick it at its peak freshness.  It never gets old.

Monday, I had the pleasure of assisting Farmer Ben in the garden… with my current work schedule, it hasn’t happened enough lately. Needless to say, it was glorious. It felt good to dig right into the dirt and pull out all the things we’ve grown.  I think I enjoyed the potatoes the most–so much fun!

So… I’ll say it again… nothing compares to fresh picked food. It’s just amazing.

Here are just a few pictures of our garden adventure:

Corn King!

Three Sisters in Action: Corn, Beans and Squash!

Tomatoes. Taking Over.

Potatoes! Ready for digging up!

Digging Right In!

Another Day’s Harvest

It feels so good seeing the fruits (and veggies) of our labor.

I am so blessed to have such a talented, hard-working hubs! Thank you, Farmer Ben!

What are some of your favorite garden items and activities?


A Fresh (Picked) Plate

Today I came home to a wonderful surprise. Farmer Ben had been playing in the garden and had some gorgeous veggies to prove it… and then, per usual, he turned it into a wonderful dinner for us to share. Take a look!

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Cabbage rolls, cucumber, beets, tomatoes, and potatoes–all picked today!–paired with local eggs and some chili sauce (a Farmer Ben specialty) from last year’s peppers. I am so excited to enjoy this meal, it’s the first big pick from the garden, other than a few small tomatoes, herbs and tons of lettuce. Not pictured: beet greens and swiss chard… and a giant tomato! I hope you all enjoy your dinners as much as I am going to enjoy this one. Happy Monday!


Honestly…

It’s Friday. The Friday after a crazy week . Finally Friday. The last thing I want to do today is work…let alone work at both jobs. But…here I am!

I’d really love to be laying on the beach right now, margarita in hand… or sitting on a patio with a bloody mary. These both sound infinitely better than working all day.

On the bright side, the hubby drove me to work AND we stopped for coffee.  It was so needed.

In other news, my waist and hips have whittled down to the point where I can take off numerous pairs of pants/shorts without unbuttoning or unzipping them, meaning that I desperately need to go shopping so I have something to hold me…

Even though I can accomplish this fancy trick, I don’t feel like I am that much thinner. I kind of feel like I am the same size. But 20 lbs is 20 lbs.  And it’s gone!

Another plus: People are actually noticing, so it must be true!

This morning I woke up approximately 50 minutes later than I had planned. What happened, Alarm C lock?! We have a standing date and you broke it!  I don’t know whether to be relieved or upset.

Even though I woke up late, I was still able to haphazardly get ready and make it to work on time… but I can’t guarantee that my hair is brushed. No big deal.

I was so planning on mailing out my foodie penpal package this morning… but I have to do it tomorrow because I left some of the items at home. Le sigh.

Our garden is out of control… I am waiting with bated breath for the avalanche of tomatoes and basil that will come in the next few weeks… we’ve gotten a few currants but I am waiting for the main event! Ah! And cucumbers… and beans … and potatoes… Yes! Life is good!

Ben made kimchi and we had it over soba noodles yesterday… it was pretty delicious but my stomach was on fire for about 4 hours after lunch. Talk about feeling the burn!

I cannot wait to soak up some sunshine tomorrow and Sunday. Bring on the SPF 50!

I also see some granola making in my future.  And napping. Definitely napping.  And running. Yes. All good things!

Happy Friday!


It’s Just Not That Serious

Sometimes, you can’t take life too seriously. Things happen.

You’ll drop a plate.  Your hair will decide to stick straight up in the air instead of carelessly across your forehead in that just-so manner and you’ll sweat profusely instead of glisten. You’ll get in fights with the people you love over something silly, whether it be taking something out of context or using the last of the milk in your coffee. You’ll smash your shin on the corner of your car door (Please don’t do this, it hurts) and then you’ll fall up the stairs. Or break some piece of equipment at work.

No big deal.

Days like these, there’s really only one thing to do. And that is lunch. 

I’m not talking anything fancy. I’m talking simple and delicious.  Seriously. Things like (local, free-range) chicken salad, tortilla chips, homemade pickles, greens from the garden, a chilled quinoa salad and pickled peppers (Courtesy of Farmer Ben)….Mint iced tea from a mason jar is optional-but highly encouraged.

Something that looks like this:

A Seriously Good Lunch.

This is another “random assortment of food” lunch that just works. Use your imagination, dine family style with your favorite lunch partner-utensils are totally not necessary. Remember, this isn’t serious.

I bet after this meal, you’ll feel ready to take on the world, crazy hair, scraped shin and all.


Of Lunch and Lettuce

Something amazing happened on Monday.

Ben and I harvested lettuce from our garden. It was the first time this season and I couldn’t have been more excited. We had red oak and pirate’s butter lettuce-both were delicious (especially when mixed with spinach and sunflower seeds, topped with maple mustard, tarragon vinegar and olive oil).

Our lettuce patch as of Memorial Day… it’s since doubled in size!

It’s a wonderful feeling to be able to use fresh ingredients, especially when grown by your own hand. I admit that in this case, it’s mostly Ben… but I get such pride when I see baby basil plants poking through the dirt or beans popping up and knowing that I helped the growing process and I love learning more each and every day.

The greens were a perfect addition to my favorite kind of lunch. It consisted of salad, salmon, dilly scrambled eggs, grilled scallions(also from the garden) and green olives. Ben and I picked off of one plate. and just enjoyed the different flavor combinations and the first tastes of the season… all these things that don’t necessarily go together, but combined..they just work.

I’m loving all those greens!

This was perfect. I’m so looking forward to more salads and more fresh ingredients that we grow in our garden. I can’t think of a better way to nourish both body and soul.


Lookin’ Out My Back Door!

It is an absolutely beautiful day today. The sun is shining, there’s a nice breeze and I had a lunchdate with the hubby. I’m working at the restaurant this evening and I brought my running gear for a night run.  How lucky am I?

Ben also informed me that we have beets, beans, lettuce,  mint and corn popping up! Hooray!

Of course, whenever I talk about spring or summer weather in the North Country, no one ever believes me. But I’ve got proof! These photos were taken this morning by Farmer Ben… enjoy!

 

We now have cows in our backyard, no big deal.

The cows belong to our landlord…

Near the garden…

 I secretly love dandelions.

Potatoes. Who knew?

Biggest spring onions ever.

Seriously, these suckers are huge!

Ben called this last one “The Yellow Brick Road.”

Have a beautiful rest of the day!


That Is Not What I Meant to Say…

Okay…I need to clear something up. Apparently one of my posts from last week caused quite a stir (as evidenced by my phone blowing up with texts and Facebook messages), so I have some explaining to do. I’m sorry I didn’t elaborate sooner, it just wasn’t the right time to do so yet.

Ben and I are having a baby.  No. Totally kidding. We are, however, embarking on a new adventure.

Ben is starting as head chef at a new restaurant…it’s such a great opportunity for him and I am so excited and proud of him! Again, it wasn’t exactly expected, everything just sort of fell into place.  

We’re also making plans for the next step/adventure. Those details are still a little foggy.

Now that that is cleared up (phew!), there are a few other things I am super excited and/or happy about.

  • The restaurant I work at in the summer is finally open! It’s gotten a much-needed facelift, an updated menu and a super talented chef (see above). I am really excited to be working there again and seeing all of my regulars. It’s going to be a great summer!
  • I sent out my foodie pen pal package! I can’t wait for Lauri in Texas to get her box full of Upstate NY/VT goodies!
  • I should be getting my foodie package soon! I looooooooove mail!
  • The Farmers’ Market is finally opening for the season!
  • We have corn coming up in our garden. And beans. And lettuce!
  • My friend Angela just moved to the area! We had dinner on Monday…I am so excited to hang out with her more.
  • I had a great conversation with my friend Christina on Tuesday. I love knowing that my friends are doing well!
  • I had a run/dinner/girls’ night with my friends Nessa and Tina. I am so social lately!
  • It’s finally starting to feel like spring!
  • I just noticed that I have used an exclamation point in every single bullet!   !!!
  • I got in a great walk at lunch today and am just itching to get out and run!

One last thing.

Happy belated birthday (it was yesterday…oops.) to my amazing Aunt Rayna! You are such a wonderful lady and an inspiration! Here’s to many more!

Over and out.