Bigger in Texas

When I was out and about searching for seeds for beans to plant, I saw a package of the weirdest green beans that I had ever seen. It’s called the yard long green bean or something.

Of course, being the weirdo that I am, I had to buy some and give them a try.

We picked a couple the other day and ate them raw just out of curiosity. They’re really sweet. I think that this shall be the green beans I plant from this day forward. That’s a lot of green beans to can from not a lot of plants.

 

Battle Scars

I’ve been back in the blackberry patch a lot here lately. There are so many blackberries to pick, because there are so many things I want to try. Things like blackberry biscuits, blackberry honey butter, blackberry freezer jam, blackberry syrup, blackberry cobbler…

The big problem with this is the stickers and briars on the blackberry bushes. I look like I’ve been in battle.

Those blackberry biscuits with blackberry honey butter had better be fucking good.

More Freegan Zucchini

The neighbors are bringing us a lot of zucchini.

Not only is the quantity of zucchini squashes large, the size of those zucchini squashes is large.

Photographic proof.

I don’t know what the fuck they’re feeding these zucchinis, but this shit is ridiculous.

I’m going to have to go through those pins that Tia is finding me for ways to cook zucchini that aren’t stir fry.

Wild blackberries

We have wild blackberries growing all throughout the back portion of the property. They’re growing so thick that it’s like the briar patch in that old Brer Rabbit story.

I made Mollie come with me to pick some blackberries yesterday and she kept trying to run home. So I carried her around to share in nature’s splendor (which was probably lost on her) and crawled through the blackberry thicket carrying a baby Mollie in one arm (she wouldn’t be still long enough for a selfie, that little wiggleworm).

and picked a handful of blackberries.

a handful from 16 may 2017

I could have picked a lot more if I had just let her run home but I’m trying to get her to not be scared of the clearing out back. Sunshine thinks she smells predator cats or some other scary thing out there, which could very well be true.

Tomorrow, I’m going to go out there without her and pick more blackberries. They’re starting to ripen, and if I leave them then the creatures will eat them all up. I don’t mind sharing with them, but I want some too!

Simple living is a lot of work

There’s a lot of work that goes into living simply (or intentionally, or mindfully, or whatever you want to call it). It seems like there’s always something needing the attention of a human being. The cats need to be fed, the chickens need to be locked up in their chicken house at night, the grass needs to be cut, the garden needs to be harvested, the wild game needs to be butchered……

This week has seen a lot of perfectly edible but not pretty looking food go out the back door at work. My boss is like “nobody is going to buy the ugly squash” and tells me to do what I want with it, just make it go away. Which has led to a lot of squash getting blanched and frozen.

Just as an example:

The back door zucchini. It was lumpy and a bit wrinkled, but still firm and edible. But people don’t buy the ugly food. See how much is piled over the top of that giant stainless steel bowl? And that is about 3/4 of it. There was more.

side note: see how fucking tiny my kitchen is? That shit is ridiculous.

So we now have a bunch of frozen zucchini. It was quite the endeavor, cutting and washing and blanching and packaging all that zucchini. It was worth it, though. It’s food security. It’s one less thing we have to spend money on through the winter when Sunshine and I work a lot less. It’s one more thing that we’re doing for ourselves. It’s one less way we are participating in the consumer driven capitalist economy we live in. And I like it that way.

Final note: I ran out of freezer containers. I made a trip to the Dollar Tree when I made my grocery run. I did some damage to their shelves and filled up an entire shopping cart with reusable food storage containers. Yes, it was grossly consumerist. But at least I can reuse them again and again, which makes it feel like a far more intentional purchase

I forgot we planted that

I was out walking around with Mollie earlier, and we were meandering near the garden. I looked over and saw broccoli growing out of the top of a bushy looking little plant.

broccoli is growing

I had totally forgotten that we planted broccoli.

The garden is starting to look pretty green. The sprouts we planted most recently are still tiny, but I’m hoping that they do as well as all this other stuff seems to be doing. Our potato plants look like bushes, and we have at least 98593869385790468 kinds of lettuce and cabbage and greens and shit growing out there because Mr B only eats twigs and berries and shit.

(all joking aside, Mr B seriously eats a mostly plant based diet. However, he is only doing so because of the unethical practices in the meat industry. He will occasionally eat some of the meat from the wild game that Sunshine kills, because those animals were free range organic meat that has no steroids or antibiotics, and they weren’t crammed in a chicken house so tightly that they couldn’t move…. I digress)

I’m hoping to talk Sunshine into going out there and picking a lettuce while I am at the grocery store this afternoon. A mango salad sure would hit the spot for dinner tonight.

final note: mango salad… start with a bed of lettuce/spinach/greens of your choice. drop some chunks of mango on top, sprinkle with candied nuts, toss in some craisins. I top mine off with some raspberry vinaigrette salad dressing and call it dinner.