Recipes

Fall Canning

I am writing this post with a very heavy heart with fires burning out of control in the Napa Valley. Over 220,000 acres have burned so far in the multiple fires in the North Bay! As of now, my property is still OK, but the fire is surrounding us. Many communities have been devastated. Just…
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Cucumber Salad

I planted 2 Persian cucumber (Cucumis sativus) starts April 1st. Each plant usually yields about 5 pounds of produce, but I either have had perfect weather or perfect soil for these plants as everyday I am picking the fruit. Yes, cucumbers are a fruit but are usually treated and eaten as a vegetable. My mother was…
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Watermelon Salad

I planted watermelon this year for the first time.  So far I have harvested two huge melons.  A vermin has eaten about a quarter of another melon, but I have left it in the garden in hopes that it will continue to eat that one and not the rest of them.  I have used watermelon…
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Blistered Padrons with Pimenton

It’s padron pepper season again and there’s nothing better than blistered padrons early in the growing season. This simple appetizer can be made in 15 minutes – my kind of appetizer! Simply put a generous tablespoon of ghee in a skillet and melt. (For more information about the  health benefits of ghee, see my separate post). Once…
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Roasted Plums

I have been picking delicious ripe plums from two trees all week. Putting sliced stoned fruit in a salad has always been a go to lunch for me, but I wanted to try something else and make a dessert. Martha Stewart had a recipe on her website for Roasted Plums with Creme Fraiche which I…
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Grilled Artichokes

My artichokes plants look like trees this Spring. I had to get a step stool in order to cut a few for grilling. The artichoke plants were cut to the ground in January so I am surprised at how tall the plants became. As usual, some of the chokes were full blown and not great…
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Zucchini Tomato Gratin

This delicious recipe is from a friend in France that I have used countless times for an easy side dish.  We had friends over for dinner and I wanted to harvest some red onions out of my garden. Zucchini Tomato Gratin 2-3 zucchini, thinly sliced 2-4 tomatoes, thinly sliced 1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced 2…
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Kale Smoothie

Happy New Year!  Sitting at dinner on New Years Eve we all shared a few of our new year resolutions.  An overwhelming theme was trying to be a bit more healthy in 2017. I make a smoothie almost every morning for breakfast, and this kale smoothie is one of my favorites.  We were all in…
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Persimmon Recipes

The two most commonly found persimmon varieties grown in the United States are Hachiyas and Fuyus. I have a Fuyu Persimmon tree on my property in Napa. Last weekend when we drove up, I harvested the last several pounds still hanging on the tree. The persimmons have been ripe for a while, and I have…
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Fresh Kale, Farro and Sausage Soup

As I mentioned in my Fall canning post, my daughter Griffin and I spent the whole day in the kitchen. The day went by very quickly and before we knew it, it was dinner time. I walked out to my garden and the only thing available for harvest was curly kale. I picked a bunch…
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Fall Canning

My daughter Griffin and I spent all day last Saturday canning fruit that we had harvested over the summer. A skill I learned from my mother, canning has turned into a Fall ritual. Friends are always amazed at how many jars we can produce in a day, but the process is fairly easy especially when…
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Chilled Persian Cucumber Yogurt (Maast-o Khiar)

My mother-in-law is Persian and she makes the best Persian food you've ever tasted. For those of you who are not familiar with Persian food, it is incredibly time consuming (a typical meal can take days to prepare), is a little complicated and may require ingredients that are not part of a non-Persian's every day vernacular. Maryam's…
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Cantaloupe Melon

I picked the first of my cantaloupe melons yesterday.  I could smell its sweetness as I brought it into the kitchen. A super easy snack is sliced melon wrapped in prosciutto.  Delicious and refreshing!
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Kate’s Tomato & Cheese Tart

Kate and I spent a day in her home in Healdsburg this week, which was fun girlfriend time. She made lunch for us, which consisted of a fresh summer salad and a fantastic tomato & cheese tart. Her tart was as beautiful as it was delicious, so I just had to know how to make it! The…
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Zucchini Cake

I have been traveling a lot this summer and have really missed being in my garden. My daughter and I drove up to Napa to hang out for the day and do some gardening.  We harvested a lot of zucchini (my plants have produced an abundant supply), several types of peppers, several varieties of tomatoes,…
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A delicious salad for lunch

Want a perfect salad for lunch today? All you need are a couple of ripe tomatoes, a little fresh burrata or mozarella cheese, freshly picked basil, your favorite olive oil, some salt & pepper, and perhaps a dollop of fresh pesto if you have it on hand. There is no salad that signifies summer more than the…
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Blackberry Farm to Table

As you saw from Carolyn’s post on Heirlooms at Blackberry Farms, we were lucky enough to spend the weekend. I have wanted to visit since I purchased the first of Sam Beall’s cookbooks, The Blackberry Farm Cookbook, in 2010. I own both of his cookbooks and have tried many recipes from them over the years.…
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Green Goddess Dressing

I am a big fan of Gwyneth Paltrow. She is a smart, talented, healthy and beautiful woman. Her website Goop is a lifestyle publication offering an abundant of healthy recipes, travel notes, exclusive collaborations, health, fitness, mindfulness and self-discovery tips as well as style and design.  She also has published several cookbooks. At this time of the…
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Zucchini Squash Recipes

Zucchini squash (cucurbita pepo) is a summer squash that yields a prodigious crop from just a few plants and is so easy to grow. In April, I planted five starts. The plants are producing an incredible amount of zucchini. Last year I only planted one start as my notes from 2014 warned me that I…
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Today’s lunch

Want a simple idea for today's lunch? Look no further than your fresh garden tomatoes, your basil, some burrata, your favorite olive oil, salt & pepper and perhaps a dollop of pesto. There is no salad that better defines summer than the Caprese salad!  
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