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QUENCH

 

HANDMADE GATHERINGS

 

A YEAR OF PIES!

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: HOME DAIRY

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING BEES

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: CANNING & PRESERVING

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING CHICKENS


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  • I'm only 30 pages into @tea_austen's new book
  • This tuna-mack (mackerel!) casserole puts a divine spin on the tired old classic. It took every ounce of willpower not to go back for thirds! It was egg noodles cooked with tuna and mackerel in a white sauce with eggs from our hens, flavored with tarragon, black pepper, cornichons, then mixed with bread crumbs and aged cheddar, and topped with both as well. Before it was served, it was topped with kalamata olives, capers, sour pickles, and cilantro. So good!
  • Sometimes being Huxley's mom means dressing up as Wonder Woman (to his tiny Batman) while feeding the wood stove, locking up the chickens, and helping @glennbenglish make dinner. Because, #mom.
  • I'll admit that it's pretty, but we three Englishes (and our feathered friends!) are SO very ready to be done with snow and frost and chill.
  • It's always a good day when @joythebaker stops by. Thanks for sharing food stories, sipping tea, strolling the property, and playing with our Wild child. Safe travels on your southern road trip, and beyond!!!
  • Was weeding the patio and looked up to find this little gnome picking daffodils.
  • Follow the red brick road? Indeed I did.
  • The best part of @fernworks and @killaspro traveling to Southeast Asia in January? The Thai food cooking kick they've been on since their return. Still thinking about these crazy delicious wings @fernworks made last night (using the recipe from @pokpokpdx). Thanks for having us over, buddies!
  • Back at home but missing this sight, from #selbygardens.
  • Family, gardens, and sea creatures are what characterized our time in Florida. I could stare at these exquisite jellyfish all day.
  • Nothing could be finer than to be back in North Carolina. Missed these mountains something fierce!
  • A late winter trip to Florida was exactly what we three Englishes needed, but we are glad to be headed back home to greet the spring in the magical mountains of western North Carolina.

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Monthly Archives: January 2009

Sharing the Load

It’s official. We’re now sharecroppers/land-sharers/what-have-you. Yesterday we walked the property for several hours with Jonathan, a young experienced organic farmer looking for somewhere to put down roots, literally. In exchange for the use of our land, he’ll help out with grounds-keeping and property stuff 5 hours a week . 
We’ve actually had the idea to do this for some time, but the right moment hadn’t really presented itself. Where we call home is situated on 12 acres, down a dirt road. While much of the property is made up of a wooded mountainside,  there is a 1 1/2 acre parcel that can be farmed.  Inspired recently by British chef/teacher/gardener/t.v. personality extraordinaire Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and his campaign for landshare in the U.K., I posted an a.d. with a local agricultural non-profit and began the search for the perfect person. 
Here’s the greenhouse Jonathan will be using in its current state. The previous owners ran an organic herb and edible flower farm out of here (in addition to another 2 greenhouses up closer to our home). 
He’s planning on putting up new plastic sometime around the end of February and installing a pump in the creek running adjacent to the greenhouse. Tomatoes will be grown indoors and peppers will be grown in the field, in addition to other crops. 
I couldn’t be more thrilled. With no money being exchanged, he gets a place to toil the soil while I have a real live farmer to direct all my questions about soil composition and irrigation and tomato hornworms at. 

Heaven, I’m In Heaven



This box of citrus delights greeted me at the post office yesterday. Thanks to my Pop for mailing me the hefty package and thanks to my step-mom, Gail, for doing the picking. I usually pilfer with permission a whole mess of kumquats from my dad’s neighbor’s tree (got that?) in Florida when I visit during the holidays. I didn’t make it down this year, though, and dad and Gail very, very generously complied with my request to send me some in exchange for a jar of something. That something, I’ve decided, will be kumquat marmalade, the recipe for which will also be featured in my book on Canning and Preserving, (shameless publicity alert!) due out in print March 2010. Last year, I candied the kumquats I picked off and topped a ricotta cheesecake with them. Delish!


P.S. My new favorite thing is/are the Groovaloos! Amazing! 

The Taste of Victory


I was doing some research on Victory Gardens for the Canning & Preserving book and came across this inspiring video. The before and after photos of the White House are so telling.

All Hope Is Not Lost!

This makes me laugh and cry at the same time; we’ll call it “laurying.” Weird, yes, but decidedly better than “craughing.” Have a lovely weekend!
Yes, it’s an ad. Yes, I still love it. To learn more about real flash mobs, check out this and this.

Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Morning





The chickens weren’t too sure about all this white stuff. They refused to move out from their patch of dirt. This is the first significant accumulation (don’t laugh, Northerners!) we’ve had this season. It’s at about 1/2 inch and still coming down. Perfect for holing up indoors by the wood stove, creating recipes, drinking hot beverages, and welcoming in the next president!