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My Garden / Recipes

Gardening When You’re Too Busy & the Best Strawberry Rhubarb Recipe Ever

raised bed gardenI used to have a quarter-acre vegetable garden. Back when I had time. But those days appear to be in the rearview mirror.

So, what’s a dirt lover to do when they don’t have the time to full-on garden?

Go with raised beds and perennials.

Garlic is a given—I’ve been using my own bulbs, which I cultivated starting back when Cait was still a toddler. While not technically a perennial, it’s super easy to grow. Plant in the fall. Harvest … Read More

Abundance of Green Tomatoes and a Great Recipe to Use Them

green tomatoes

I’ve been putting up all the last of my fall crops: Asian pears, pumpkins, concord grapes, raspberries, aaaaaand lots of green tomatoes. Time to get preserving.

I’m not a fried green tomato fan, so I went looking for a recipe for something different. I found Beryl’s Mom’s recipe for pickled tomatoes. It’s a keeper.

Since I’ve got a mix of cherry, Roma, and an heirloom variety that I’ve been growing from seed for so long that I no longer remember … Read More

Best Pie Crust Recipe

3 piesApropos of the fall weather and the approaching holidays, I thought I’d share my secret pie crust recipe. Good for any and all types of pies—single crust, double crust, lattice, you name it.

There are a bazillion pie-crust recipes out there. So why is this perhaps the best? Because it uses science to help get the best flake and the best taste.


2 1/2 cups cake flour
1 stick cold unsalted butter
8 oz shortening
1/4 cup … Read More

My Annual Christmas Present to Myself

bakers creek seed catalog

If you’re a gardener and you don’t know about the Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds catalog, you should. The catalog always comes in early December, and I always find a few new plants and veggies to try. The diversity and uniqueness of their offerings is fantastic. I dare you to not find something you can’t wait to add to your garden.

I consider this my Christmas present to myself. And now I hope it becomes a Christmas present you give … Read More

Does Severely Pruning Concord Grapes Kill Them?

Can you over-prune Concord grapes?

pruned grape vine

I love my Concord grapes. I love the way they look as a live privacy screen on my fence. I love getting to eat them off the vine in the fall.

So when I had to severely prune them back last fall in order to make repairs to my fence, I worried that I might have killed them. Over-pruning can really impact grape production.

You can see the hatchet job I did on this poor … Read More

Best Heirloom Seed Catalog

Happy days are here again! Nothing blows off the winter doldrums like getting my Bakers Creek Heirloom Seed Catalog. Because I grow organically and save my own seeds, I especially love these guys.

They offer one of the largest selections of 19th-century heirloom seeds from Europe and Asia. So if you’re looking for something out of the ordinary—and sustainable, look no further.

Bakers Seed Catalog

From their website: At Baker Creek, our mission is to provide the seeds of a sustainable food … Read More

Looks Can Be Deceiving

It’s mid-September and, by the looks of it, my summer garden has been a huge success and looks to be still going strong.

small veggie garden

In one way it has been. Just not in the way I would have wished. Because of all the rain we’ve had this summer, I got lots and lots of foliage. But not so much in the way of actual veggies.

While “lush” is pretty, you can’t eat it.… Read More

Perfectly Crisp Kale Chips Recipe

There’s a trick to getting not-soggy, not chewy, but perfectly CRISP kale chips every time. And I’m going to share 2 of my secrets to ensure your success. But first the recipe!

1.   Start with a bunch or two of kale and rinse well. (As it so happens, I have several bunches from the garden that need using.)

2.  Use a salad spinner to dry well. [SECRET #1: You need to start with very dry kale pieces—moisture contributes to sogginess.]… Read More

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