You’ve probably never met a soup like this

...alved and stoned1 teaspoons salt1/2 teaspoon of black pepper Put water in a large saucepan, bring to a boil. Add the mushrooms and simmer for 5 minutes. While that’s going on, melt the butter in a small saucepan, add the onion and cook until golden brown. Stir in the flour to coat the onions, then add a few spoonfuls of the hot mushroom water to the onion mixture and stir until combined. Add the onion mixture to the mushroom pot. Add the ra...

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Geoff Lawton Soils Video

...Research Institute of Australia website, which also has an interesting blog. In an email the Institute said that they allow educational screenings of Soils as long as you don’t charge admission. So get some friends together, watch this video and then go shovel some manure! It would also make a nice addition to a school library. Thanks to Scott Kleinrock of the Huntington Ranch for the tip on this one. Scott said the Geoff Lawton Food Forest...

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Cat Litter Composting

...re model, which is classic composting, but with lots of attention and care, followed by a 2 year rest period for the full bin, during which time worms and bacteria do their scrubbing magic to help remove any lingering nasties. When the first batch is done, I’ll have a sample lab tested, just out of curiosity. Whatever I do, I won’t spread my finished compost on food crops, but instead under our trees and around our perennials.  I hav...

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Our favorite way to cook zucchini

...itchen grater. Saute the shreds in an uncovered skillet with lots of olive oil and some chopped up garlic, until there’s no water in the pan, and the volume of the zucchini is reduced by about half. This transforms the zukes into a savory, glossy, succulent mush. Maybe that’s not the most elegant way to phrase it, but it’s the best I can do. Yes, it does have a baby food texture, but it’s really, really good, so you don...

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Scrubbin’ It

...ll have to seek out at your local restaurant supply store. Sadly, made in China–but what ain’t these days? Now if only I didn’t have to do the dishes! Mrs. Homegrown here:   This is indeed a fine, stout scrubbie, but as at least one commenter says, it may not be the best thing for the cast iron. For indeed, if your cast iron is well seasoned, food should come off a rag, or a couple scrapes with a flat spatula. Unless yo...

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So-So Tomatoes Become Excellent When Dried

...m trying to save them for the depths of winter, when I really miss tomatoes. We have maybe a couple of quarts of them now. Several years ago we had an absolute disaster involving a pantry moth, its many offspring, and one big jar of dried tomatoes. For this reason I’m storing the dried tomatoes in a series of small jars, to offset the risk. Another good tip for fending off moths is to freeze any food stuff which you suspect might be at risk...

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Derek Jarman’s Garden

...ade to be had for miles in any direction. In winter, sea storms rage, while biting Siberian winds push through the shingle and up through the floorboards of the fisherman’s cottages strung out along the road to the lighthouse. You can’t take life for granted in Dungeness: every bloom that flowers through the shingle is a miracle, a triumph of nature. Derek knew this more than anyone. Gardens give us food, medicine, solace, and t...

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Seed Mania

...was introduced to it by my friends at Tularosa Farms. It’s difficult to germinate so that plan is to gift the seeds to the TF folks and hope that they give us seedlings (an evil plan, I admit). I also picked up some crimson clover and globe artichoke seeds from the Bountiful Gardens folks. Desert Chia from Native Seed Search. Yes it is that chia, of Chia Pet fame. Chia is an ancient herb used by Native Americans for medicine and food. Cha...

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Loofah Sponges

...cultivation to more southern latitudes, unless you can maybe get a jump start by sprouting indoors.  Some tips: The seeds need warmth to sprout–sort of like tomato seeds. They won’t start in cold soil. Start them indoors over heat if you have to.  Basic growing requirements are lots of sun, lots of water, warm weather and time. Again, three months for food, for months for sponges. Here in SoCal March is a good month to plant th...

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How to start a chicken retirement community

...could do it if we needed to–but we never really sat down and decided what would happen to our ladies when they stopped laying. We’re very good at procrastinating that way. What happened is sort of surprising, looking back. I’ve not eaten chicken since high school (or other meat, except rarely, fish). My objections have never centered around the morality of killing animals for food, but rather a long-standing objection to how th...

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