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Friday, March 5, 2010

Food, easy to grow, easy to cook, and great to eat.

Ok... So here I am again... and it is more about food than anything else...

Reasons. I'm stuck in this house due to weather, and I'm always thinking about food.  I get it honestly! My paternal grandmother was always worried about what she was going to cook for dinner, while on the other hand my maternal gradfather was asking what is for lunch as soon as he got up from the breakfast table.

With the weather as harsh as it has been, life is a little harder out of the garden BUT here are things that are easy to grow, easy to store, and foods I take with me even on horse back, out for the day.

I finally had to break down purchase some herbs because the weather here as taken its tole on mine!

The Sweet Potato... While I love sweet potato casserole, I am getting to old to eat a stick of butter, a lot of sugar and top it with marshmellows and or nuts! 
My way of eating them is ... well a little less of a pound punch to my stomach.

I always wash my potatoes no matter if I am going to peel them or not. 
I also gather everything I will need for this dish.

Potato...one for each person!  or more if you are a heavy eater.

Garlic one clove... one for each person or each potato.  Peal it, smash it let it sit 10 minutes while you cut your potatoes.

Thyme, if dried...  1/4  a teaspoon for each person or potato. If Fresh 1/2 teaspoon, peal leaves from branch... hold branch at top and pull DOWN to take leaves off in seconds.

Red Pepper!  Only a Dash! over the entire dish.  I use about 1/2 a teaspoon for everything just before I throw it in the oven.

Olive Oil.  any will do ... I use light for this dish just because I don't want to taste it.

it is amazing how easy this is...

Just peel your potato, and cut it into strips like thick french fries. 
Barely sprinkle olive oil over the strips, then sprinkle the thyme, throw whole cloves into the dish, and sprinkle with your red pepper flakes.

Toss to coat it all perfectly and put it into an oven at 350, cook till tender and sweet. 

It takes my oven about 45 minutes to an hour depending on how many of the potatoes I decide to cook.  

Potatoes are SO EASY to grow... you can do this even if you are in the city on your patio.... use a kitchen size garbage can, take a potato that has eyes, or strings starting to grow out of it.  Cut the potato up so each piece as at least one eye or external growth.    Put 1/2 a bag of garden dirt into your kitchen size garbage can and put these pieces on the top, cover the cut up pieces with about 2 inches of dirt .... a plant will emerge from each cutting... as it does and startes to get larger... tear off the bottom leaves and add more garden soil.  this will allow more room for more potatoes and the plants will continue to grow.  otherwise throw them in your garden, cover, and continue to pickoff bottom leaves cover more as they grow...

THEN once they bloom their beautfiul blooms, cut the tops off,( like tobacco) this will stimulate the bulbs>>>>your Potatoes to grow larger.  NEVER let a potato skin see the sun! this is very important.

Last year I got about 10- 15 good size potatoes from each cutting!    So think... One potato you would have thrown out just gave you at least 20 to 30 more.    These plants like it cool but not freezing. so start them early.  I plan to throw mine in the ground with in the next 30 days.  I am zone 6 ... but I plant zone 5 due to elevation issues.

Garlic is a fall plant.... so while it does save over winter... mine is all starting to sprout again so I am almost out, BUT I have plenty in the garden once again doing it's thing over the winter.... I only hope as harsh as this one has been it will survive.
This photo is before I cook them.

This is After cooked.  Yumm...

Yes I use my cast iron skillets for everything! I don't know what I would do without them.

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