Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Today Is Bee Day

Six years ago I decided to become a beekeeper. I love bees. I am fascinated by and appreciate what they do and, of course, what they make! When we found Baby #4 (now known as Henry) was on the way, I knew I would never be able to manage a bee hive. "Next year, I'll get the hive together" I told myself - every year - for 5 years. Today is finally the day ---the ladies have arrived. I could never have done this without Doug's help and dedication to this project. He always accomplishes what he sets out to do. I must admit I am a little apprehensive but am hoping for the best. If all goes as planned, the Yellow House Apiary will soon be open for business.

Blue Eggs and Yellow Tomatoes

I've always wanted to teach a class based upon a cookbook. Last night, I had the opportunity to do just that and I was able to share one of my favorites. It is the perfect companion for creating farm market meals and full of simple, wonderful recipes.

The Sweet Carrot Soup with Dill Gremolata is spring in a bowl!

But I must admit the Buttermilk-Vanilla Panna Cotta was my favorite. It's sweet and light and creamy. Perfect with slightly sweetened berries. It's always flattering when people attend my classes. I hope they enjoyed the evening and love the recipes and book as much as I do!

Monday, April 27, 2009

I Love Goats

I was at Heritage Prairie Market yesterday to pick up a few things for a class. I couldn't resist this picture. After a little jockey-ing for position everyone had a place and a choice view of the farm, too.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Just Like Daddy

After several warm spring days I thought it was time that Henry consider shorts. If you know Henry, you know he knows his own mind. Shorts weren't a consideration, especially since he had new "skinny" jeans like "the brothers".

I decided it was time to convince him shorts were the way to go. Cautiously at first...suggesting a few pair....undeterred but feeling as though I was loosing ground - I spy the perfect pair - Khaki cargos.

"Hey, these have a cool belt just like Jake and Max's". Nothing.

An then, an epiphany.

"You'll look just like Daddy!".

Henry came home with new shorts.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Sur La Table

Last week I made this really good, really easy dinner for us. I spotted this recipe in the April 2009 issue of Martha Stewart's Everyday Food. Baked Eggs in Tomato-Parmesan Sauce was a hit and will definitely stay in rotation. I used farm eggs for this dish which I would highly recommend. I had intended to include a green salad but in my haste to feed everyone quickly, (it was getting late) the salad was forgotten.

Still the meal was just perfect without it.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

A Day at the Green City Market

I took three of my favorite cooking class ladies and my new friend, Shelley, to the Green City Market yesterday. We had a great adventure in local food, attended a demo and enjoyed our short trip to the city on a gorgeous day.

Many of my favorite growers were there. River Valley with the freshest mushrooms you'll ever see. Doug and I credit them for our love of grilled portobellas.

Three Sisters with the best black beans I've ever tasted. They are so fresh they don't need to pre-soak. The first time I bought them I made a great recipe out of Blue Eggs and Yellow Tomatoes by Jeanne Kelly and served them with a pork shoulder that Doug smoked. The whole family loved them and it's a recipe I'll go back to again. I have a pound in the cabinet just in case the mood strikes and I can't make it to the market.

In my dreams my artisan loaves look just like these...

At a green market, even the end-of-season apples call you to take them home.

I wonder what the outdoor market will surprise me with in May?

Black Beans with Orange and Chipolte
from Blue Eggs and Yellow Tomatoes
by Jeanne Kelley

1/4 cup bacon fat or olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1# dry black beans, rinsed
3 bay leaves, preferably fresh
1) 2" curl orange zest (3/4" to 1" thick)
1teaspoon minced canned chipolte chile in adobo
Heat the bacon fat in a heavy, medium-sized Dutch oven or pot over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and saute until tender, about 8 minutes.

Stir the beans and the add 8 cups water, the bay leaves, and orange zest. Bring the beans to a simmer. Skim any foam from the top of the beans. Partially cover the pot and gently simmer the beans over low heat until they are very tender, stirring frequently, about 1 1/2 hours.
Stir in the chipotle chile and season with salt.

Uncover and simmer until creamy, about 15-20 minutes.

*Can be prepared 3 days ahead and refrigerated or frozen for up to 1 month

Monday, April 13, 2009

Welcome to Our House

I have talented friends that blog. While I have quietly envied their courage to create, write and share the same question always came to mind. Who would really care about what I do? Ironically, in that question I finally found my answer. A blog is a digital scrapbook, a look at the day-to-day that makes our lives so remarkable. Fabulous meals, special days, great ideas frozen in time. It is this that encourages me to pursue this blog. For my family I document the beautiful, if pedestrian, life that is ours in the yellow house.