Cut your Christmas Tree Down From the Woods like Santa Intended

You know those old stories and children’s books where the family treks into the woods to find the perfect Christmas tree and they actually find it?  No trees shipped in from who knows where, no parking lots to browse through, no sales people.  A tree from the forest near your home. Sounds nice.  I wish we could do that. Oh wait!  Continue reading “Cut your Christmas Tree Down From the Woods like Santa Intended”

The Wild Blueberry’s Story

All food tells a story. Some of this story we can tell easily because we know where we bought the ingredients, or we heard a description from the waiter at a restaurant. But are there many foods you eat where you truly know the full story? It isn’t just about who serves the food or who makes it, but rather, where it was grown, and even where those seeds or animals were came from. Do we know if it is organic, heirloom, heritage, GMO free, wild or cultivated? Sometimes it’s too much hassle to think this much. But it can be worth playing the investigative reporter and getting to know your food and its origins. You might be surprised how long of a history there is on your plate.  Continue reading “The Wild Blueberry’s Story”

chicken of the woods mushroom underside

Amateur Mushroom Foraging for People who REALLY Don’t Want to Eat Poison

Wild mushrooms are in a class of their own when it comes to culinary usage and self sufficiency. They can pack unique flavor and aroma, vital nutrients, and maybe even some medicinal potential, so it is no surprise there are so many avid mushroom fanatics out there. Chefs will fight over a rare find, expert mushroom hunters will relish the chance to bring dinner to new worlds of flavor, and casual amateurs like me will feel a thrill at having something uncommon and wonderful to share with the family. But how do you know whether a particular mushroom will taste good? And more importantly, how will you know it isn’t poisonous?  Continue reading “Amateur Mushroom Foraging for People who REALLY Don’t Want to Eat Poison”

gluten free dandelion flower cookie recipe

Dandelion Flower Cookie Recipe (Gluten Free & Whole Grain)

Dandelions are pretty great, huh?  Splashes of yellow scattered about starting in late spring, continually spreading and dancing in the breeze throughout the summer.  As flowers they make lovely bouquets for children to share and when they set to seed they become an all natural replacement for blowing bubbles.  And you can eat every part of this surprisingly nutritious, bountiful plant, from the roots up to the leaves all the way to the bright yellow flowers themselves!  You can make many dishes with dandelions, including, oh, say… COOKIES! Continue reading “Dandelion Flower Cookie Recipe (Gluten Free & Whole Grain)”

Summer in February Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

The snow banks are reaching towards the power lines as I dream about the grass growing again and the new garden plans and the baby chicks we will order in March.  It has been a record cold month and the east coast has been pummeled with snow for two and a half months.  Oh, February is definitely the time for summer dreaming. Winter is too long and pushes us right to the edges of ourselves, our pantry, our well stocked freezer, and our patience. So, what can I do but reach deep into the freezer and bake a warm gooey strawberry rhubarb crisp!? Dreaming of warmer days so soon to come… Continue reading “Summer in February Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp”