We’ve been travelling a bit lately for both work -I’ve been working on my upholstery line in North Carolina & on another collection of products coming in 2020!!- and fun, and haven’t had a lot of weekends at home, which means when we finally got one (this past weekend) it was time to get in the garden!! It was pretty much a beautiful mess… Everything’s been growing like crazy but it was in serious need of weeding & harvesting. Some fun little caterpillars started eating things so that was fun too.
We did raised cedar beds and did our pathways in gravel. There’s landscape fiber under the gravel but we do still get occasional weeds in the gravel. The more the kids “help” me in the garden, the more dirt that makes its way into the gravel so there’s also that as a maintenance issue 😉 The pups were starting to dig like maniacs in the empty beds earlier in the spring but thankfully, we’re pretty much past that now that the garden beds are growing and the dirt isn’t so tempting. (On a side note- they have begin to dig in the gravel ALL OVER our property and it’s been insane!!! Fawn has even learned it from them so it’s all three of them… We’ve been planting in the front- sage, lavender, and willow and they have been going after everything. A new little fence gate is happening so we can get them out of the gravel areas when we’re not with them.) Some days it truly feels like it’s Dave & I against chaos in every area of our lives.
This week it was time to harvest the cabbage because we (oops!) totally overstuffed the been beds with waaaaaay to many beans and they’ready to eat and being crowded out. (On a side note- I’m not a patient gardener and generally overstuff my beds with too many things!!) The cabbages are MASSIVE right now:
We made a huge haul and brought a bunch in…
Aurora- who’s I believe covered in peanut butter in this photo??- helped me dry the leaves in the salad spinner:
I’m now calling her “Dennis” (from “Dennis the Menace”) because she is truly more into everything than any of our other four were. She’s comparable to Christian (#1) in terms of energy level and just like him and Louie (#3) she enjoys finding markers, pens, and pencils and drawing on the walls and furniture but is ridiculously fast & sneaky with it. She’s also a climber. Between the puppies and her (seriously there’s something wrong with us!!) if we turn our heads for even a second some sort of mess is being made in some way. It’s unreal. Anyway, here’s one of her sweeter works of art- a bunch of spoons shoved into the olive oil that she made while “helping” me cook the cabbages:
We have so much cabbage that I was wanting to get creative with it and to be able to use it for main courses. I saw some beautiful little vegetarian folded cabbage “parcels” in a favorite cookbook of mine “Naturally Vegetarian: Recipes and Stories From My Italian Family Farm” so I decided to do my own thing with the parcel idea, using ingredients we had & my favorite herbs. It was a hit with even the kids and they loved the “presents” as they called them. It was easy & yum so thought I’d share:
- Cabbage head
- 1/2 Onion
- Chives- 1 per cabbage leaf
- Garlic Cloves: 2-3- pressed
- Lean ground beef- approx
- Cooked Wild Rice- Approx 2-4 servings
- Optional chopped herbs/ leaves: basil, Italian parsley, Swiss chard leaves (anything really!)
- Salt & pepper
- Shaved Parmesan
- Blanche the cabbage leaves, set them in ice cold water, drain & set aside.
- Sauté onion & celery in pan with olive oil. Add in ground beef and brown. Salt & pepper to taste. (I like to add the salt as the beef is cooking so it’s absorbed.) Add fresh herbs & pressed garlic.
- Add the wild rice to the pan and mix.
- Place the beef-rice mix in a bowl and lay the cabbage leaves out flat on a cutting board.
- Place a little pile of the mixture into the center of each cabbage leaf and fold it up starting with the bottom fold up, side folds in, and top fold down.
- Use the scallions to “package” up each “parcel” like a present.
- Place the parcels back in the frying pan with a little olive oil and lightly sauté each one on medium heat- about 2-4 mins per side.
- Place on a plate and top with shaved Parmesan cheese
And, if you’re interested in sources for anything in the photo below, click the links underneath it. (The outfit’s been a go-to of mine this year… it basically feels like walking around in pj’s yet you’re presentable 😉 ) Enjoy your day & I’ll be back tomorrow with some exciting news!!