May 29, 2013

House Hives Check-In

Finally got back to the hives at the house.  Moved the nuc (split) into a full box.  Went through the copper top and it looks like it has a queen laying eggs.  To be honest, I didn't see the queen in any of the boxes but there were new larvae so I'm going with it.  

The top bar may be my undoing.  I have yet to figure out how to work it without screwing up the comb since they glue it down the sides and on the bottom.  As I was fishing around in the bottom, one of the girls stung me through the mesh on my glove.  My hand is really swollen!  Since I was trying to go through the house hives after work and it had been a long day, I just stopped there.  I'll try to finish going through it on Saturday when the weather is nice again.  From what I did see it is doing great though!

May 19, 2013

Pork in Spiced Coconut Sauce

This one came from an Chinese/Asian cookbook I bought when I was in college.  It originally called for shrimp but I almost never buy them so I adapted it to pork.

Pork in Spiced Coconut Sauce

1 lb pork, diced into bite-sized chunks
cajun spice seasoning
juice of 1 lemon or approx. 1/4 c lemon juice
2 T olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T tomato paste
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp Tabasco sauce
1 can corn
1 can coconut milk

Sprinkle pork with spice seasoning, lemon juice, and marinate for 1 hour.

Heat olive oil and saute garlic until slightly softened.  Add pork and cook until mostly done.

Transfer to a bowl leaving as much of the liquid behind as possible.  Add tomato paste and cook over a low heat, stirring well.  Add thyme, cinnamon, and Tabasco sauce.  Stir well.

Puree half of the can of corn with the coconut milk.  Add to the pan and simmer.  Add pork and the rest of the corn and simmer for 5 minutes. 

This is good served on top of brown rice, quinoa, pasta, or baked potatoes!!!

Mustard Pork Chops

Not sure where this one came from either and I haven't made it in a while.  Andrew and I used to eat these all the time when we lived in Corvallis.  I'm sure it would be equally tasty with gluten-free bread crumbs and I plan to have it later this week.  

Mustard Pork Chops

1 1/3 c gluten-free bread/cracker crumbs
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp dried sage
1/2 tsp salt
3 T olive oil, divided
2 tsp dijon mustard
4 pork chops

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Heat 2 T olive oil until hot but not smoking.  Saute crumbs, garlic, sage, and salt until golden brown; 3 to 5 minutes.  Note:  This will make enough crumbs for about 12 pork chops.  Just freeze any leftovers.

Pat pork chops dry.  Heat 1 T olive oil over moderate-high heat.  Cook chops 2 minutes on each side.  Transfer to baking dish.  Top each chop with 1/2  tsp dijon mustard and then dip top in crumbs and put back in the dish.

Roast meat in middle of oven until done; approx. 15 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 140 degrees.

Harira Soup

Another handwritten recipe I've had in a notebook that I'm afraid I might lose; not sure where I got it though!

Harira Soup

7 oz. dried chickpeas (~1 1/8 c)
1/2 c olive oil
1 T chopped fresh ginger
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 onions, diced
4 c vegetable stock
7 oz. dried lentils
pinch of saffron threads
1 T sweet paprika
1 T cumin powder
salt and pepper to taste
2 c water
5 T gluten-free flour blend
juice of 1 lemon
28 oz petite diced tomatoes, canned
1 bunch flat-leaf parslep, chopped
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
5 oz vermicelli pasta, broken up - gluten-free or you can leave out

Soak chickpeas in a large bowl overnight. 

Heat oil in large soup pot and fry ginger, garlic, and onions until the onion softens.  Add 2 c of the stock, the chickpeas, and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat slightly and simmer for 20 minutes.

Add the lentils, saffron, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper.  Cover with the remaining stock, bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes.

In bowl, gradually mix the water into the flour. Add lemon juice and tomatoes.  Place the bowl over the steaming pot, stirring constantly until mixture thickens.

Add parsley and cilantro and add mixture to the soup, stirring constantly.  Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the pasta and simmer for a further 5 minutes.

Mushroom Polenta Rounds

I think this was originally a Weight Watchers recipe.  I'm going through some handwritten recipes and thought I'd add it here before I lose it! 

Mushroom Polenta Rounds

1 log of store-bought polenta
8 tsp Parmesan
2 tsp olive oil
1 1/4 lb mushrooms
2 tsp garlic, minced
1 tsp rosemary, chopped
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
3 T cream cheese
1/4 c. water
2 T fresh parsley, chopped

1. Preheat over to 450 degrees.  Slice polenta into about 18 rounds or so (it's been a while since I made it so I can't remember.)  Put on baking sheet, spray with nonstick spray or brush with some olive oil and sprinkle with 1/4 tsp Parmesan.  Bake until lightly browned; 15-18 minutes.

2. Heal olive oil, add mushrooms and cook about 7 minutes.  Stir in garlic, rosemary, salt and black pepper.  Cook for about 1 minute.

3. Add cream cheese and water.  Cook about 2-3 minutes until the cream cheese has melted and everything is combined.

4. Put 2 T on each polenta round.  Sprinkle with 1/4 tsp Parmesan and garnish with the parsley.

Taco Seasoning

Making your own taco seasoning is easy, cheap, and healthier.  Buy the spices in bulk and use a pint-sized mason jar.  Folks tell me it tastes pretty darn good!

Taco Seasoning
4 T chili powder
2 T onion powder
2 T garlic powder
2 T cumin powder
1 T brown sugar
1 T cornstarch (helps keep the mixture from caking and thickens stuff a bit when you put the spice mix on your taco meat)
4 tsp salt
4 tsp paprika
4 tsp oregano
3 tsp red pepper flakes

As I said above, I like to put everything in a pint-sized mason jar and shake the heck out of it.  I use about 1-2 T of the mix for about a pound of meat.

May 15, 2013

I Ate It...On My Bike

Last night I totally ate it on my way home.  I was riding around a guy walking on the sidewalk and my back tire caught the edge of the sidewalk where it met the parking lot in front of the eye doctor.  It hurt but I'm okay and so is my bike.  

These pictures were taken today to allow for full color development ;)

And as my friend Michelle Achee said on Facebook..."Life is a full contact sport. Glad you're intact"

But I'm still smilin'!!!!

May 9, 2013

Throw off the Shackles of Female Expectations

"Nothing in the world will turn everyone into a supermodel. That’s not the point. The goal is not to be supermodels. It is not to be 00s. The goal is, in fact, the opposite. Instead, the goal is to throw off the shackles of female expectations. It is to be fierce and to be confident and to be healthy exactly as nature intended. It is to be natural, to listen to one’s body above all other things, to be healthy, to be unapologetic, and to be fierce and hot and all of this, again, not because a woman is meeting social expectations of female physicality–whatever those might be for a particular woman–but rather because in natural womanhood there are serious health and serious pride." - Stefanie Ruper -

May 8, 2013

Farm Hives Check-In

Did not go through the boxes today.  But, I did take a couple of supers out.  I should have taken three.  The two strong hives are still going strong. 

The strongest one (Hive No. 4) was already filling the super with honey so I put a second super on it.  The other one (Hive No. 2) needs it but Hive No. 1 needed a super even more.  Hive No. 3 (I think) is not doing so well.  Not sure if it swarmed or if it is just weak. 

I need to spend a day going through them again!  I was kind of in a hurry since Monica was taking the boys and I out to dinner.

May 6, 2013

May 5, 2013

House Hives Check-In

Nuc seems okay.  Didn’t see the queen but there was still larvae.  

Top-bar was awesome.  I learned that part of the reason I had problems before was the comb was attached to the side of the box in addition to the top-bar piece.  Ended up screwing up a couple since they were connected to the next piece.  But, all in all, it looked really good.  Again did not find the queen, but I also didn’t worry about it too much.  

The coppertop looked okay.  They haven’t really made it up into the super.  Probably shouldn’t have put it on there yet but it doesn’t seem to be a problem.  Did see some new larvae...not sure it was being layed properly though.  Again, didn’t find the queen.  They have ate almost all of the pollen patty half that I gave them and are bringing in lots of pollen.

May 2, 2013

Love Letters to My Sons..