East Sac Edible


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From Garden To Table: Bowl of Croutons and a side of Kale Caesar Salad

DSC_0702Right now I don’t have much to harvest in my garden other than kale. As my garden is in transition, I have to settle putting kale into everything which I don’t mind one bit. A couple of weekends ago we spent a beautiful day out in Point Reyes with some friends and picked up some Mt. Tam cheese, bread, olives and a kale salad from Cowgirl Creamery for a picnic. The kale salad was delicious, packed with cheesy goodness and I decided to recreate it for my lunch today.

My motto is that salad is basically an excuse to eat croutons. An all kale salad can be hard to pull off so dressing and extras are a must… and croutons are those extras…

DSC_0695I harvested about 100 grams of kale, which I thought looked like a pretty big bounty for one personal salad but I always forgot that the kale really reduces in size when you massage it with oil and lemon juice (an absolute must for a good kale salad). After washing the kale (aphids are always hiding in the folds), I cut out the ribs and chopped it up a bit. I put a drizzle of olive oil and a squirt of lemon juice over the kale and gave it a good massage for a few minutes. Recently I have been having all kale salads in restaurants around Sacramento and it horrifies me that they don’t massage the kale! Eating a bowl of unmassaged kale is really hard to handle… not even croutons can help. DSC_0696

DSC_0706For the dressing, I whirled 4 cloves of garlic, 1/2 cup of full-fat greek yogurt, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, the juice of half a lemon, a dab of mustard, a squirt of red wine vinegar, a shake of salt and a few grinds of pepper in my food processor. I added about a tablespoon of olive oil while whirling. I put the dressing into a jar and put it in the fridge. This made about a jam jar of dressing so I envision many more meals of Caesar salad in my future.DSC_0697

Croutons were made with day old bread on low heat with a drizzle of olive oil and shake of salt.

So in my defense, I had two little toddlers eyeing my salad and I knew I was going to have to share so I made double croutons… but my bowl of salad really was more of a bowl of croutons with a side of kale. I added a few shaves of parmesan to the top.

DSC_0701 DSC_0703Did I mention I like croutons?

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Garden Visit: Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School Edible Schoolyard

Over the weekend I was able to visit good friends in Berkeley and they took me on a tour of Alice Waters’ Edible Schoolyard garden at Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School (click here to see their website). I was surprised by how big the garden was (a full acre!) and walked through (jealously) thinking that I wished I had that much space to garden! I will let the pictures do the talking for me and I hope to visit again in the spring or summer. DSC_0621 DSC_0622 DSC_0623 DSC_0624 DSC_0625 DSC_0626 DSC_0627 DSC_0628 DSC_0629 DSC_0630 DSC_0631 DSC_0632 DSC_0633 DSC_0634 DSC_0635 DSC_0636 DSC_0637 DSC_0639 DSC_0640 DSC_0641 DSC_0642 DSC_0643 DSC_0644 DSC_0645 DSC_0646 DSC_0647 DSC_0648


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Harvest Tally 2015!

As you may know the last two years of living in East Sac I have totaled up my annual harvest from my garden. In 2013 I grew 425 pounds of food and in 2014 I grew (a disappointing) 382 pounds. 2015 will be no different I will continue to weigh my harvests. My 2014 goal was to grow 500 pounds of food and since I did not achieve that goal my 2015 goal will be the same. I hope with each passing year that I will be able to harvest more and more mainly with the support of my fruit trees which have yet to give me a sizable harvest. So for now, 500 pounds it is!

In January, I was busy not being in the garden but I started preparing beds for spring planting and tended to my large compost pile. I was only able to harvest kale, a few strawberries and herbs so my total poundage for January was a whopping 1.11 pounds! I was able to pick lots of fresh herbs to make vegetable stock!

DSC_0597I am hopeful for my 2015 garden although I was listening to CapRadio and they stated that Sacramento has had the driest January since records began in 1870s. We have not received one single drop of rain since mid-December which is really scary. I think about my dry soil and what it will mean for my garden. During the height of the summer we were regularly saving our shower water for our rain barrel but in the “colder” months we have been a bit more lazy about this. Time to save our water in earnest now and help the soil which has been parched for water… even if it is shower water.