Category Archives: cook


This year we grew various potatoes. The pink and the purple were the most beautiful. The color equals more nutrients. Thank goodness that people in the seed saving world are keeping the incredible diversity of potatoes alive and accessible to gardeners!







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Aphrodisiac herb and spice liquor

I have the best friends! Just broke out this beautiful gift from a blossom buddy. This sweet spiced and herbed brandy is the perfect partner to a dark winter new moon walk. Lets all make some for ourselves!! I wish a little of this came out of the spring in oak creek!


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Chocolate banana panini

This type of dessert sandwich is ‘all the rage’ on the internets. It must be because its a pretty good idea. The panini first draft is nine grain sourdough bread, ripe bananas, a few drops of lemon juice for brightness, mini chocolate chips and walnuts with earth balance buttery spread on the outside. Then cook it in the George Foreman grill. Pretty yummy. I’ll have to keep experimenting with this formula!


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Nightshade romance


I got married this summer which was super fun. We had a potluck and played kickball. Feelin’ pretty sappy about it today!

10 years ago my sweetheart made me an unanticipated breakfast. There was hardly a thing in the house so we each had a microwaved potato with cumin and tomato paste.

For this inspired dish pictured above I popped the whole cumin seed in oil. Then I added cubed red potatoes that I previously soaked in some salt water so they would be less gummy. Cooked them until they browned some and were tender. Then I added cherry tomatoes we grew in the garden and some baby chard and spinach. A little garlic powder and salt, and the ‘first meal’ is reinvented.

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Home grown salsa

This fall we made some delicious salsa. The ‘brown berry’ and yellow tomato varieties made the tomato base syrupy sweet. I used onions, garlic, cilantro, serrano chilies (that my mom grew at a lower elevation) cumin, lime juice, salt…I think that’s all. We ate a lot fresh, and cooked & canned some up too.

We also experimented with growing high elevation green chili plants and had some luck. The plants were leggy because I planted them too near some extreme tomato vines, but they fought to survive and we got a few chilies. We dug the plants up and brought them inside.







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Dried tomatoes in oil

This fall we had a lot of tomatoes to preserve. I dehydrated them and then stored them in olive oil. The fruits softened up in the oil. I’ve been storing them in the fridge and adding scoops to recipes. The oil has an amazing flavor!





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Tomato city

This summer was *insane* for cherry tomatoes. This was my first time trying a bunch of different varieties by seed. It ended up being a crazy mess of vines everywhere since I never got around to putting any tomato cages up. Picking was twister. I took as many pictures as I could.

Variety review is as follows:

Isis candy cherry – nice classic red one and a half inch fruits. I didn’t see many with the orange variegation ‘cat eye’ come through as advertised.

Cherry Roma – cute one inch little red Roma tomatoes. These were the least prolific of the six I tried and took the longest time to bare.

Blondkopfchen – my second favorite of the six. Tiny round yellow fruits that formed in incredibly prolific bunches. The fruit was sweet and had a really cute elfin point at the base!

Red fig – pretty and firm pear shaped fruits that ranged in size. We still have one of these plants hanging on next to the house in the corner of the hoop house by the 55 gallon drum we have for thermal mass. Yay December tomatoes!

Egg yolk – very round and sweet yellow fruit; prolific too. When it got very ripe it was near orange but was sweet when yellow and got sweeter.

Brown berry – Winner!!! Nice red brown color. And the sweetest, juiciest tomatoes I have ever had. Highly recommended!




















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Dehydrated pinto beans

We cooked loads of pinto beans this weekend. It took two shifts in the pressure cooker. Once the beans were cooked we added onions, garlic, cumin, green chiles and salt and cooked them more in the crock pot. Then we blended them with the immersion blender, and reduced the beans mix to a thick glop that we could spread it on the teflex sheets in the dehydrator. We dehydrated it over night and then put the dehydrated beans in the food processor to powder it. Ready for Paria Canyon trip in a few weeks! And it makes quick meals easy…so much more delicious to make it from scratch than get it from a can.




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Smoothie popsicles

Took at break from the great spring backyard roundup today to make homemade smoothie popsicles. I got the molds a few years ago at a discount store. I used a blender full of several bananas, blueberries, strawberries, blackberries ( picked last summer), along with young coconut and pineapple juice pulp. I used hot water poured over the frozen fruit as the liquid to blend. Filled these up and there was enough for one more smoothie for right now. To get them out of the molds when they are frozen, I just run the mold under hot water for a sec and it slides out.



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Apple beer

There’s only one apple beer left we made last fall from picked-with-our-own-hands golden delicious apples. We also processed them with our own hands. The yeast we used produced a really dry beery flavor and it is SO fizzy. Yum! I hope we have another good fruit year! We get late frosts and can loose all our fruit blossoms in town in one sad night. Last year was a great fruit year, and if it happens again there will be fruit preserving how-tos like crazy up here. Keeping my fingers crossed!


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