Monday, November 24, 2008

Growing Cilantro Indoors in the Winter

Before the first frost of the season, I had some herbs growing in pots on my deck. I harvested all of them, except my cilantro, which was just beginning to grow. So I replanted those two cilantro plants into a new pot with new dirt, inside my house. It's slowly growing. I had to tie it up the other day because the little branched were just laying in the dirt, like the leaves were too heavy. So we'll see how it grows. I also planted cilantro seeds in another pot at the time. Still haven't seen hide nor hair of any shoots coming out of the ground! Time will tell. Time is all we have now!

Monday, November 17, 2008

3 lasagnas

I've decided to make life a lot easier on myself and make 3 different lasagnas for my daughter's graduation party.

  • Original lasagna made with homemade canned spaghetti sauce
  • Mexican lasagna made with homemade canned tomato/pepper/onion blend sauce
  • Grilled chicken alfredo lasagna
My daughter will come up with something vegan for herself and whomever wants to try vegan cooking.

I already bought beer and wine. My mom is making desserts. My mother-in-law, the salad. My daughter and I are bringing various snacks. We should be all set to celebrate her BSBA college degree!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Party Planning with Food from my Garden

I'm going to make a a hot little snack for the graduation party. I mix plain sausage and lots of my jalapenos up and fry them together until the sausage is nicely browned. Then I mix some pumpkin and coconut milk together to make a thick sauce and add it to my sausage. I'll add that mixture into pastry dough cups made using my little muffin pans - then bake for about 15-20 minutes. I can cool those down and pop them into a freezer bag - and reheat in a microwave or oven at the party!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Planning a party with things grown from garden

I definitely will be making some of my dragon bites, as well as some of my stuffed poblanos. I'm thinking of maybe half of them I will baste in pumpkin butter before cooking. That hint of sweetness and a bit of fall flavor really brought out a wonderful taste.

Pumpkin Butter

  • 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 1 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg


  1. Combine pumpkin, apple juice, spices, and sugar in a large saucepan; stir well. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes or until thickened. Stir frequently.
  2. Transfer to sterile containers and chill in the refrigerator until serving.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Planning a graduation party

My daughter is graduating tomorrow. She just earned her BSBA! Well now I'm planning a graduation party quickly, so that I can fit it in before the holidays! My mom and mother-in-law live in a senior community where they own their own homes. There is a Lake House there that everyone uses for parties -and guess what -it was available for only one day - the Sunday before Thanksgiving! Both of the moms are so excited and they want to help. Stay tuned for what we're going to cook! For starters, I had already made and froze a double batch of Albondigas (Mexican meatballs), which I used my mom's zucchini from her garden and my fresh herbs.


  • 12oz lean ground pork
  • 1/2 cup grated zucchini
  • 1/2 cup crushed tortilla chips
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano (or 2 tsp fresh, minced)

Roll into 24 meatballs. Brown in a little oil in a large non-stick skillet. Add a 15oz can enchilada sauce. Cover, simmer 5 minutes or until meatballs are cooked.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Cooking with vegetables from the garden

I had cut some Holy Mole peppers in half and stuffed them with a mixture of cream cheese, chives from my garden, and cojack What a wonderful fall treat!
cheese. Then wrapped two long strips of bacon, which I had basting in a pumpkin butter, all around the pepper. Grilled it slow and low heat. The Holy Mole turned out to be very mild, and the flavor of the pumpkin butter cooked on the bacon was heavenly!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Pumpkin Trifle

I made a pumpkin trifle that came out of the Better Homes & Gardens magazine. We had a family gathering yesterday at my mother-in-law's house - and everyone just loved the trifle! Basically, it had instant vanilla pudding on the bottom, a layer of whipped cream, layer of chopped up pumpkin bread, layer of pumpkin butter, then a dollop of whipped cream. You could pour caramel sauce on top, or add some chopped nuts to garnish. It was delicious! Buy the magazine - more great recipes for fall!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Using herbs from my garden

I have so many herbs from my garden to use! Last night, I made a beer can chicken on the grill. I used my rosemary, thyme, marjoram and tarragon (chopped of course) with some seasalt from Hawaii on the inside and outside of the chicken. Then, I used the pumpkin seasonal beer. Cooked for 1-1/2 hours with indirect heat. It turned out marvelous! I also made baked potatoes wrapped in foil and placed those on the grill. Before wrapping, I pour a bit of olive oil on the scrubbed potato (skin still on). Then I seasoned it with rosemary, thyme and the same Hawaiian seasalt. And for my vegetable, I placed corn in a little pot for the grill, and added chopped red pepper and some poblano peppers from my garden. Just wonderful!