Spring is here! Today is Maine Maple Sunday which means there are about ninety sugar houses throughout Maine that are open to the public. We went to Merrifield Farm in Gorham which is like a maple syrup paradise where we sampled maple syrup over vanilla ice cream and watched maple syrup being processed.
Two years ago in the early spring I blogged about buying beautiful pullet eggs (shown above) from a local organic farm in my town. Off-season we’ve been buying “Certified Humane” Nellie’s “Free Range” eggs. I decided to Google Nellie’s just now and am so disheartened to see this report about the cruel conditions of the chickens. I will never purchase Nellie’s eggs or trust the “Certified Humane” label on eggs again! (Update: check out this link “American Humane Scam” featuring Bob Barker!) It can be so hard to make informed food choices when we can’t even trust the “certification” labels! All the more reason to buy from trustworthy sources when the trustworthiness can be verified by you. Of course if you can realistically, affordably and humanely raise your own, that is ideal!
“A fear of disagreeable facts, and conscious shrinking from clearness of light, which keep us from examining ourselves, increases gradually into a species of instinctive terror at all truth, and love of glosses, veils and decorative lies of every sort.”
John Ruskin, 1887
I received a special delivery this week: Ten pounds of organic Concord grapes from a friend’s garden! I have been wanting to make a Concord grape pie for at least a year now ever since I came across two very intriguing vintage recipes in my old cookbooks.
Here’s my first of many batches of homemade sauce using a variety of tomatoes from our garden. There’s something somewhat controversial and extra healthy about it, however: I don’t remove the tomato skins! Most if not all recipes will tell you to remove them, but they break down as they cook so they blend right in with the sauce. More importantly, your body will appreciate it because the skins contain a high concentration of carotenoids and flavonols, both of which are antioxidants.
It’s been a challenging season for growing tomatoes in Maine due to the long, cold rainy spring we had. For a while looked like we might not have any tomatoes at all, and some of our plants were dying, but now we are enjoying a beautiful bounty! I thought it would be fun to show the progress from start to finish:
I hope you got my reference to Keeping Up Appearances!
It feels really good to finally have some time to relax after a hectic yet exciting two weeks. I can’t figure out how to make the summer seem like it’s lasting longer than it does. There’s so much to experience and enjoy, but when I do that the more quickly it flies by. I know I’m not alone with this, right?! Savoring it all and sharing it here on my blog with you feels like a good practice. So, I have good news to share about out tomatoes after a harrowing beginning during a very cold and wet spring. Continue reading “Our first ripe tomato from our bucket (it’s pronounced “bouquet”) garden!”
Such sad news coming from London! My prayers are with you!
I’ve been an Anglophile since my teen years. It hit home for me literally when, in the summer of 1985, I was a counselor at a summer camp in upstate New York where many of the other counselors were from England. I shared a similar dry, off-beat sense of humor with them. I felt a sense of understanding I hadn’t prior. One night in a townie bar during our time off they declared me an “honorary Brit.” Sadly that won’t get me official citizenship, but there’s no reason why I can’t import English goodness into my daily life!
I‘d like to introduce some British goodies to you in case you aren’t yet familiar with them, all of which can be purchased online: Continue reading “An Anglophile’s Pantry Staples”