THE CONVERSATION CONTINUES about a different kind of seed company–seed companies that don’t just package and re-sell seeds, but actually grow some or all of their inventory themselves, spending endless hours year in and year out first-hand, making sure each crop is the best it can be. This week, my guest on the blog and on radio is Lia Babitch, co-manager of Turtle Tree Biodynamic Seeds—a very special company for many reasons even beyond the TLC they put into their open-pollinated crops. We talked about some exceptional peas, beans, yellow tomatoes, winter squash and even a chicory—a new-to-the catalog crop for winter forcing. [read more…]
How to grow tomatoes, America's favorite "vegetable" (really a fruit!). Covered here: organic tomato growing from seed to harvest, including tomato disease prevention, heirloom versus hybrid tomato varieties, and even growing grafted tomatoes, ripening half-red ones, and making easy tomato sauce.
THE ADVENTURE IN Mollie Katzen’s “The Heart of the Plate: Vegetarian Recipes for a New Generation,” begins even before the first recipe page. It starts in the delicious, intimate endpapers—which came from illustrated journals that the author has been keeping since she was a teenager, which were also the origin of her beloved, bestselling “Moosewood Cookbook.” The musings (that’s one in the photo above), in drawings and hand-lettered words, speak to how Mollie—a keen gardener, and the guest on my latest radio show—approaches food today. Learn how she suggests we re-define “vegetarian;” how she “paints [her] rice,” and makes her simplest, most delicious tomato sauce. And maybe win her newest book, too. [read more…]
I CALL IT ‘TOMATO JUNK,’ and it’s my last-dash, mad-stash remedy for everything that’s still edible in the garden when frost threatens, or when I’m just too tired to keep at it, and ready to pull it all. I talked about Tomato Junk today with Amy Eddings of NPR’s New York City affiliate, WNYC (listen in now!)–about how to transform the final, precious hauls from garden or farmer’s market into colorful bricks of frozen goodness. Use it in the offseason as a base for soups (such as minestrone); chili; stews, or in any other recipe that calls for the usual can of tomatoes, assorted vegetables and water. I’ve even made curries and an improvised tikka masala-style dish with Tomato Junk as the starter. Like this: [read more…]
TOO MANY BEANS? Kale galore? Tomatoes finally ripening faster than you can use them fresh? Make soup, and freeze it—my favorite and most satisfying way to preserve the harvest, since there’s hardly a winter day when I don’t feel like a bowl of soup. Three favorite, easy recipes to turn your garden into right now: [read more…]