Saturday, July 23, 2011


Until my friend Karen introduced me to the world of daylilies, I thought that daylilies consisted of the ubiquitious "tiger lilies" and "Stella d'Oro."  Thank you, Karen!  Now, when July comes around, my garden explodes in a riot of daylilies. 
This was a gift, without a name.
 "Mokan Butterfly"
"Siloam Ury Winniford"
 "Jackie's Choice"
 "Lady Liz"
 "Red Volunteer"
"Hyperion" - a lovely pale yellow and one of the older daylily varieties.  It goes so well with Russian Sage.
Here's an update on some other things going on in the garden.
Sometimes the flowers on hostas aren't very attractive and we clip them off.  I keep the flowers on this one!
 These are (not quite yet) red table grapes.


Friday, July 8, 2011


Whenever someone asks me for a recipe that I need to type up, I figure I may as well post it on my blog as well.  A friend is putting on a bridal shower and I told her about this recipe.  It is very easy, makes a lot, and tastes great!

DIP: In a medium bowl stir together the following 7 ingredients. Cover; refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
* 1 cup light sour cream
* 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
* 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
* 1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon leaves
* 1/8 teaspoon salt
* 1/8 teaspoon pepper
* 2 tablespoons milk
* 1 (9-ounce) package (2 cups) fresh cheese-filled tortellini
* 1/2 cup Italian dressing
* 1 (6-ounce) can pitted large ripe olives, drained
* 1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut in half
* 1 medium green pepper, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
* 1/3 pound thinly sliced roast beef, each slice cut into 4 long strips, each strip cut in half crosswise
80 small toothpicks
Prepare tortellini according to package directions. Rinse with cold water; drain. In a large bowl stir together all kabob ingredients (except toothpicks!); refrigerate until ready to serve. To serve, thread assortment of three kabob ingredients on each toothpick. Serve with dip.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


This weekend we'll be visiting friends at their place on the river, and we're in charge of bringing an appetizer to eat as we pontoon down the river.  I decided to bring a variety of crackers and a variety of toppings so that people could mix and match to their own liking.  With the abundance of rhubarb in my garden I made a chutney that can be combined with either cream cheese or goat cheese and/or proscuitto on crackers. 

This recipe makes about 2 cups; and it will keep in the refrigerator for several weeks.  Serving Ideas:  Spread cream cheese on a cracker, top with a dab of chutney.  Serve alongside grilled chicken or pork.
*  2 tablespoons olive oil
*  1 medium onion, finely chopped [I used a sweet videlia onion.]
*  1 pound rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
*  1/2 cup raisins
*  1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
*  1 tablespoon candied ginger
*  1 cinnamon stick
*  1/4 teaspoon garam masala
*  1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
In a saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the onion and cook until softened.  Add the rhubarb, raisins, brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon stick and garam masala.  Continue to cook, stirring over medium heat until the rhubarb begins to break down (about 6 to 7 minutes).  Stir in the vinegar and remove from heat.  Taste for balance.  For a sweeter chutney, add a little more sugar.  For additional tang, add a little more vinegar.  Remove the cinnamon stick before serving.

Friday, July 1, 2011


Chilled soup on a hot Summer day is the perfect food.  The corn soup recipe below is so easy to make and the soup is delightfully refreshing.

* 6 ears sweet corn, husks and silks removed (or 4 cups frozen corn)
* 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth, divided
* 3 shallots, chopped
* 1 onion, chopped
* 6 tablespoons creme fraiche (or sour cream)
* 1/4 cup minced English cucumber
* 2 tablespoons freshly chopped chives
     Using a cleaver or heavy large knife, cut each ear of corn crosswise in half. Place corn in a heavy large pot. Add 5 cups chicken broth, shallots and onion. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until corn is very tender, about 25 minutes. Using tongs, transfer corn to a large bowl to cool; reserve broth.
     When cool, cut kernels off cobs. Return 4 cups corn kernels to broth. Working in batches, puree soup in blender until very smooth. Strain soup through a vine sieve set over a large bowl, pressing on solids with back of spoon; discard solids. Mix in enough additional chicken broth to thin soup to consistency of heavy cream. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
     Refrigerate uncovered until cold, about 4 hours (can be prepared up to 1 day in advance; cover and keep refrigerated.).
     When ready to serve, ladle soup into 6 bowls. Top each with a dollop of creme fraiche (or sour cream). Sprinkle with cucumber and chives and serve.