Monday, June 16, 2014

Accidental Chef

I am not a very good cook. I can follow a recipe alright most of the time, but as far as creating a meal, knowing what tastes good together or whatever, not at all.

Trying to get back to eating without (wheat), yesterday I decided to make a version of a recipe I found on Southern Plate .com called Steak Tips over Rice.

Instead of beef Stew Meat, I had found a package of Pork Stew Meat marked down at my local grocery store.

I put the meat in the crockpot, and poured a jar of Pork Brown gravy over it. I thought maybe the gravy was too thick, so I added another jar full of water (which wasn't a great idea, it watered down too much, if you're looking to make the original recipe and have a thicker gravy.)

I let it cook for several hours, then steamed a bag of frozen white rice in the microwave to pour it over.

I wanted another side, some sort of vegetable, and finally randomly settled on a can of mixed vegetables.
At first I fixed a plate with Pork Stew Meat in Gravy over Rice, with a side of mixed veggies, but then J came in and fixed a bowl with it all mixed together and I realized I had inadvertently cooked a

Everyone really liked it. Yay!

Otherwise, J was home yesterday; came in from working all night on the ambulance and went to bed.

I tried to get up early - I keep wanting to be more of an early-to-bed-early-to-rise type - but I only lasted about two hours and ended up falling asleep in the recliner for a couple of hours.

Yesterday was sunny and warm and the grass had (mostly) dried out, so I woke J up and told him it'd be a good day to get the yard mowed. I don't remember when was the last time it'd been mowed. It was pretty high.
He rode the riding mower, while I push mowed all around the edges best as I could (still don't have a weed-eater).

I watered my back porch plants before I came in for a shower, and then a surprise (to me) rain shower with some thunder came up.
We got .10th of an inch last night.
Before I emptied the rain gauge yesterday, we had gotten another 1/2-inch.
(No rain today, thus far.)

The Salsa Garden is coming along pretty well. Mostly. The row of tomatoes to the left are way behind in growth and production. Not sure if it's the kind (Rutgers) or that they aren't getting as much sun. (I'm betting it's the lack of sun.)

The peppers are growing soooo slooooow. They did the same last year, also, took a long time to grow and produce. I had thought it was because they didn't get enough water, or the old garden area wasn't too good anymore, but that's surely not the problem this year. I couldn't (I don't think?) put them out any earlier than I did until the freeze/frost danger passed.

The other two rows of tomatoes - Beefsteak, Cherokee Purple, and Black Russian - are coming along nicely and if things continue as they are, I hope to have enough for putting up plenty of canned stewed tomatoes and jars of salsa to last us awhile.

We also have a surprise growing in the Hugelkultur bed, volunteered from the compost dirt we had used in one of the Potato condos before moving it here.
Not sure yet if it cucumber, squash, or gourd. We've had all three at one time.
We've had pumpkin, too, but I never had any luck actually growing any pumpkins, so I doubt it's pumpkins. If it's not, I hope it's cukes. 

My Hydrangea are looking pretty good. Not nearly as good as my Mom's, but they are bigger than they have been for the past several years.
Seems like I'm okay at keeping some things alive for years and years, but not able to get them to actually grow. I guess I water them 'just enough' to keep them alive, but not enough for them to flourish. The rain has been really good for the plants and trees this year.

The first 3 or 4 Hydrangea above are the Traditional blue/pink ones (depending on the acidity/ph of the soil) you generally see everywhere.

The last 2, below, with red stems are a different variety, I forgot the name of, so I need to email and ask my Mom.
All of these Hydrangea were "trashed" plants, my Mom just willy-nilly hand-prunes her plants and tosses the excess into the burn pile.  She goes back later, and they have rooted and are growing new plants!
Kills me, I tell ya! If I break anything off and toss it aside, it dries up and dies.
She'll yank them up and stick them in a pot of dirt and they'll grow like they were babied with tender loving care all along, rather than having been broken off and thrown away like rejects.

One of my 3 blueberry bushes I've been trying to grow for the past 3 or 4 years finally grew and produced some berries. Not enough to do anything with really, no fresh cobbler or anything, but I'm able to get a small handful every so often and eat right off the bush.
They're so yuuuuummy.

No comments:

Post a Comment