20160108_141934 (1600x1060)Down the road a piece, these things have been growing since the beans were cut.  Had no clue what they were but our curiosity was piqued when the tops of the root started showing.20160104_120742[1] (1600x1060)I stopped and pulled one to get a better look at it.  I was thinking some kind of turnip, I had an idea that they were known to be a winter cover crop but a search quickly turned up the answer:  They are daikons – a type of radish.  I’ve even made a pickle out of them before, with carrots, as a garnish for sammiches.  The one I cut up for that was huge!  I guess the one I pulled was a youngster.DSC_1683 (1600x1060)The pork mole was so good yesterday we had it again today, with the addition of another go at the mole sauce.  I looked at this recipe and let it be a guide but mine was with it more in spirit than in fact.  Still, I think I hit the highlights.  Today’s sauce is the darker one poured across the burritos with the sour cream on top of it.DSC03104 (1600x1060)Post needs moar kittehs!  Frank is the long hair, he’s been there a long time, found in a dumpster and still a bit feral.  The black and white one is Susie, she’s 5 years old and is an old timer at the shelter.  She’s shy, you can pet her but don’t try to cuddle.  Just sayin’.DSC_1651 (1600x1060)Sloppy Joe!  A family favorite.  We like them with cheese.  This one has hot giardiniera as a garnish, I’d mix it right in with the ground beef but Mrs J would not. stand. for. that.DSC03111 (1600x1060)Moar kitteh!  Mrs J says she is just a sweetheart, purrs and loves to cuddle, reaches out for you.  She’s 4-5 months old and plays well with others, has had her shots and is spayed and ready to go!20160108_092225 (1600x1060)Here’s a turkey breast and leg quarters that have been salted and refrigerated overnight.  Most of the green salt has been brushed away and the pan is ready for the oil.20160108_142915 (1600x1060)Here it is five or six hours later, hot out of a 225-250 oven.  I tossed in several garlic cloves before it went in.DSC03109 (1600x1060)This is Tammy, her brother has been adopted out already.  He learned to socialize a little quicker but she is coming around.

Mmm… posole

DSC_7332 (1600x1060)I cleaned all the chicken bones out of the freezer, the wing tips from all the wing dinners, and a few pork bones and roasted them all for a nice stock.  I used that to braise a pork shoulder for the posole.  The recipe doesn’t need much more than that.  I tossed several dried chilies into the broth to soften and pureed those with garlic and lime juice, adding the chili paste back to the broth.  There’s a diced onion in there and oregano with a few bay leaves.DSC_7333 (1600x1060)I love to fry flour tortillas in a little oil, flip them once when they start to brown and them remove them to a plate atop a paper towel to drain.  Give them a sprinkle of kosher salt when they are still hot.  I like to grab a piece and roll a bit of pork into it with some of the cabbage and radish garnish to make a mini taco bite.  Dip it into the broth or give it a squirt of hot sauce.  Yummy!IMG_3423 (1600x1200)This is Ginger’s momma.  She’s still at the shelter but Mrs J says there have been several inquiries.

Jinxed Myself

I put up those skunk pics and mused that Jack or another of the pups would tangle with one of them.  Brought that on myself, I guess.  Jack got skunked last night.  Fortunately Mrs J keeps the right stuff on hand to kill the stink and the boy was soon deodorized.

Made some pozole today with a quart of the roast pork I put up in Mason jars.  I’m finding that method as handy as freezing.

The pozole is simple enough to put together.  I dumped the pork into a fair sized sauce pot and added some chicken broth.  Tossed in some diced onions and cloves of garlic, and a couple of cloves of ..er..cloves.  Now add a bit of oregano and a few grinds of black pepper and the addition that really makes this dish–some sauce made from dried chili peppers.  Anchos work fine, as would any of the large dried red chilies.  I have some New Mexico chilies in this batch as well as a couple of dried pasillas.

To make the sauce, tear the chilies into smaller pieces, remove the seeds and the membranes and the stems.  Soak these in broth or water, you can bring them to a simmer in a sauce pan to hurry the process.  Use enough liquid to cover but not much more.  When they soften dump everything into a blender, add a few cloves of garlic, a touch of oregano, and a splash of lime juice.  Run the blender to puree and then dump that into the pot with the pork.  Add a can of white hominy and then set everything to simmer for a couple of hours.

Serve the pozole with any of a number of garnishes: shredded cabbage, radishes, shredded cheeses, nacho chips, green chili peppers, pickled or fresh jalapeno slices, or whatever strikes your fancy.


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Kitchen Garden

I’m going to repost some of the gardening posts from last year….

(From May 2009) So it’s time to get serious about gardening.  Here’s some things I suggest for a great summer vegetable garden.  This offers a variety of healthy eating all summer long and tomatoes and peppers to freeze or can for winter.

I prefer raised beds, here’s a plan for a 4×6 raised bed kitchen garden.  I prefer raised beds because it’s easier to navigate, keep down pests and keep moist.  On one end, you’ll want to have a trellis.   This will be where the peas, beans and cucumbers will go.  You’ll divide the garden into 1 sqare foot sections (use string to create a grid, remove after planting). In one square foot each, you’ll be able to plant several of each kind of plant.

4 pole (green) beans, 8 peas (mix up varieties),  2 cucumber plants and 1 summer squash.   Moving inward:  kale (2 ), collards (2), eggplant (1) and carrots (12-16).  Next row: radishes and onions (8 each), tomatillos (1), tomato (1), tomato (1).  Next row: tomato (1), leaf lettuce (16), spinach (9), tomato (1).  Last row:  pepper (1), pepper (1), pepper (1), tomato (1).

Notice the lettuce and spinach are shaded by the the tomato and pepper plants this will help them stay cooler during the hotter months.   Peppers, tomatillos, eggplant and tomatoes will need cages, I prefer the cone shaped ones.  Orientation is helpful – in this garden, the first row is better if it’s north or east, and the final row is south or west.

Next I’ll create an herb container garden.  Because what’s good cooking without fresh cilantro, basi and lemon thyme.  Until then….