Campfire Cooking: Fish in Clay (& Vegetarian Options!)

...tation. If you do dig your own clay, and find that it is not pure enough to hold together well, try adding an egg white to the mix. Once you have your clay and are ready to start cooking, soften up the clay by adding a little water to it and kneading it until it’s soft and pliable: The next step is to find yourself some big leaves for wrapping your food. We were using big sycamore and curly dock leaves. If you can’t find any big leav...

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Recipe for the World’s Best Whole Wheat Pancake

.../2 teaspoon sea salt 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon baking powder The night before making these pancakes I take a tablespoon of mature starter and add it to 100 grams of freshly milled Sonora wheat flour and 110 grams of water. This mixture will be the 200 grams of starter you’ll use in the recipe. The next day mix all the ingredients together, fry them up in a pan and get ready to have your pancake paradigm shifted. New frontiers in b...

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Easter Lessons

...ye as well as white eggs, but the post promised good results with brown eggs, and the dyes were deep and earthy enough that it seemed it would not matter. The technique was simple–a one to one ratio of organic matter to water, boiled 15 minutes or more, cooled, and then spiked with vinegar. The eggs soak in this mix for as long as you like, perhaps overnight, refrigerated. I tried out onion skin (russet dye), red cabbage (bluish dye) and hi...

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Gardening Mistakes: Six Ways We’ve Killed Plants

...had incurable Pierce’s disease. That’s a guaranteed failure. Thankfully we’ve found a few good sources when we need seedlings: Annie’s Annuals and Perennials and Theodore Payne. 5. The great mystery of watering. I’m still working on this one. I discovered last year that I’ve been under-watering our fruit trees.  To figure out watering needs for fruit trees the pros use expensive soil augurs to take samples. I m...

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Is Purslane the New Kale?

...Purslane is a common weed in North America. We’d love to be able to forage it in the neighborhood but, for some reason, it only tends to appear in unappetizing locations: usually the gutter (I think it needs a bit more water than what falls naturally from the sky here). You can eat the whole plant: stems and leaves. It has a salty and slightly lemony flavor reminiscent of New Zealand spinach. There’s always a huge bin of it at Super...

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005 Amy and Vince of Tenth Acre Farm

...ork they did involved constructing berms and swales in the front yard, the only part of their property that gets enough sun to grow edibles. Amy and Vince describe the trial and error process they went through to perfect this water harvesting system. We also discuss the beautiful result you see above–a front yard that combines edibles as well as flowers that both please the neighbors and provide habitat for beneficial insects. The magic ext...

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Creating a Moon Garden

...out better at night if they are in front of a dark background–a dark green bush or the shade of a large tree. It’s not all about plants. Including light colored rocks, gravel, decomposed granite, stepping stones, water features and white walls can also create interest in a moon garden. Creating an interesting nocturnal landscape means less reliance on lighting. As I’ve blogged about before, artificial light is not good for us o...

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Apartment Parking Lot Gardening in East Hollywood

...p with a solution . So based on the “Square Foot Gardening Book by Mel Bartholomew I built two 5 ft. x 1 ft. square foot garden boxes from inexpensive ($ 2.15) 1 x 6  x 6 ft. cedar fence boards bought from Home Depot. I waterproofed them by sealing the insides with with pure tung oil from Jill’s paint in Atwater. Each planter gives me 5,  12 x 12 inch sq. ft. spaces for growing. These boxes take up a small amount of space and fit e...

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Making Tofu From Scratch at the Institute of Domestic Technology

...s for Crazy-Delicious Vietnamese Sandwiches . She began the tofu class with with some soy beans that were soaked the night before. The pre-soaked  beans were ground up in a blender and the slurry was boiled in a pot with some water. The mixture was poured through a cloth to produce soy milk. The cloth was gathered up and squeezed to get out every drop of milk. Nguyen showed us three different ways to create blocks of tofu with everything from a...

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Worth Doing From Scratch: Corn Tortillas

...and I’ve done just fine with supermarket masa harina. As I like to measure dry ingredients by weight I’ve figured out that for enough tortillas for four people you need to mix 250 grams of flour with 300 grams of water. Cook as many tortillas at once as you can. I can do three at a time on our stove. Cooking one at a time takes forever. Keep a bag of masa harina around and you’ll be ready for any tortilla emergency. In just a...

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