Sunday, September 14, 2014
I'm writing a bit more today about tomato hornworms, since Henry's Mom expressed concern that I'd gobbled a few of them down, which... I did not. Promise! YET! ha
I'd like to point out that there's a difference between CONSIDERING a recipe and actually trying it.
In my case, Hornworms and Green Tomatoes never made it past my palate, but here's a link to the recipe in case you'd like to try it:
I think its a pretty safe bet to guess that anyone who has grown tomatoes, has run across these phantoms of the garden, whether they knew it or not.
More often than not, you will see their damage before you see them. Reason being these guys are masters of disguise, they are mostly nocturnal eaters, staying frozen in position during the day so as not to attract bird's attention.
Or mabbe its just to digest the prodiguous amount of leaves they just consumed like a reveller after a Thanks Giving meal.
Judge for yourself!
Yes, Sparkers, there really IS a tomato hornworm in that photo!
This ability to merge into their environment allowed 35+ of them to defoliate the nicely flowered, leafy new branches of my 'maters in plain sight.
It took 3 tries, one in the morning, another in the early evening and a third with the help of an ultraviolet flashlight (they glow in UV light) under the full moon to remove them all.
At least that's what they want me to believe.
I'm not fully convinced another won't turn up!
No hornworms were injured.
I don't believe in killing things unless absolutely necessary.
Particularly since these catepillars morph into equally fascinating hummingbird moths. Check out these moths doing their thing on a night blooming Datura!
They were put in a jar and dumped on the other side of the bike path in the forest where they had plenty to munch. A few of the larger ones didn't appreciate being moved and reached back to give me a good nip with their jaws as I was pulling them from their perch.
Have fun, winter is coming and with it an end to all things growing and green!
Saturday, September 13, 2014
I'm always on the outlook for new healthy taste experiences.
Especially those that are gluten free.
Case in point, I briefly entertained the thought of making an online recipe I found for tomato hookworms, after I plucked a lovely plumb one, intent on eating my tomato plants to the ground. For all the world it resembled a green bean... well if you could get past the legs.
But I digress...
So when I ran into Teff flour, I knew I had to try it and concocted a delicious porridge from it... no hornworms included. You can find my recipe in my last blog.
Previously I'd had Teff at a local Ethiopian Restaurant, in the form of injera, a spongy, sourdough pancake that is used both as a utensil to pick up food and a plate to serve the food on.
More recently, I bought the grain, which is as small as... well the period of this font!
The problem with the grain versus flour, is that if you're in a rush, and texture isn't an issue in the recipe you are making, it takes about the same time as it does to cook rice... which is to say 20 minutes once you get the water up to a boil.
Whereas the flour cooks almost immediately.
Speaking from experience.... failure to fully cook Teff grain the full 20 minutes, may result in um.... a musical performance later on in the day?
So why Teff? Teff is high in fiber, iron, B vitamins and a host of other trace minerals.
But rather than go on about it in my own words, I found this article : gluten.lovetoknow.com/Teff_Seed
That blabs on about every fact known about it. Which is what I usually do but there's no sense in reinventing the wheel here, especially when my chores aren't done and the day's half over.
Friday, September 12, 2014
I would post a photo of this, but it looks just awful and I don't want to discourage anyone from making it based on an ugly duckling photo.
This porridge can be an alternative to your daily grind, its full of Omega 3 fatty acids, and trace minerals, thanks to the seeds and teff grain it contains.
2 cups of filtered water
1 tablespoon Teff flour
1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
1 tablespoon ground sesame seed
1 tablespoon chia seed
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
3 ground dried figs
1/2 cup Greek Yogurt
Fruit (raspberries, blueberries, nectarines, apples... whatever you have on hand).
Fill pan with 2 cups of water.
Add Teff flour and cinnamon, stir.
Put whole sesame and flax seed in grinder, grind until you don't see any intact seed.
REMOVE the hard stem on the top of the fig.
GRIND figs until crumbly. Sometimes I have to shake my grinder to get the figs close to the blades
ADD ground sesame, flax and figs to the water and teff.
TIP: DO NOT grind the flax, sesame and figs together. You can grind the two seeds together no problem. Big Problem if you try it with the figs. You will not save time. You will have a big mess. Don't try it! ha
Turn on heat, stir and cook 5 minutes after its come to a boil.
Remove pot from heat.
TIP:At this point you will be thinking: "OMG I did something wrong", because the contents of the pot are still soupy. That's how you want it! Because your going to:
STIR in chia seed. Cover pot with lid, let sit 5 minutes.
Chia seed needs water to swell, or it will cause constipation problems.
Hence the need for it to be a bit runny.
To your waiting bowl:
CUT up larger fruit into bit sized pieces. If you are using berries, there's no need.
ADD 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt. This will further thicken the porridge.
DUMP the pot containing the hot seeds into your cereal bowl, on top of the yogurt and fruit, mix.
It tastes just like fruit pie in my opinion.
If you've got a real sweet tooth, honey is a good add.
But for me the three dried figs and fruit is plenty.
This porridge will also keep you full, for almost half the day.
AND its gluten free.
PS if you don't have TEff, you may want to try this recipe with Oat Bran. I've made it with whole Teff Seed, but it takes too long to cook the seed in my opinion when you can have it in five minutes with the Teff flour or Oat bran.
Friday, January 03, 2014
5/28/00 - 1/2/14
My dearest boy, ray of sunlight, my happy faced, good natured friend.
Go gently into that good night,
Do not fear...
You're in my heart,
Thursday, January 02, 2014
I'm sure ya'll know the blood sugar benefits of adding cinnamon to your beverages and foods, so this blog isn't about that.
Its about the mess cinnamon makes, left floating on top of your cup of tea, or stuck to the rim, or lining the sides of the cup, you just drank your brew from.
Or worse yet, waiting for you in all its slimy glory at the bottom of your cup, unconsumed and doing your blood sugar no good as a consequence but sparing your tongue the dread slime texture.
Well, hope is alive and well... as I inadvertently discovered a method to keep this from happening while waiting for my tea to brew.
The secret seems to be to mix the cinnamon together thoroughly with black strap molasses in the bottom of your waiting and ready mug.
You've got to whisk it around until there's no powdered cinnamon in the cup.
That's right, its got to be all glommed up, imprisoned in the molasses.
If you are gagging just thinking about black strap molasses... turns out this method works with just fine with honey too!
And you might want to give the black strap molasses a try, since its full of minerals, lower in calories and has a lower glycemic index that many sweeteners.
Granular sweetener, sugar, or 'no sweetener please' users...sorry... I've not found a method to prevent the Clinging Cinnamon Blues.
But if you have, please share!
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