Friday, January 29, 2010

One of My Favorite Soups . . .

is this Tortilla Soup from the Fix-It and Forget It Cookbook (Good Publishers) and it's done in your crockpot!

My husband LOVES this soup. Both our daughters make it frequently and everyone they serve it to LOVES it.

4 chicken breast halves (cook, debone & shred chicken)
1 garlic clove, minced,
2 Tbsp. butter,
2 14 1/2 oz cans of chicken broth,
2 14 oz cans chopped stewed tomatoes,
1 cup salsa (mild, medium, or hot),
1/2 cup chopped cilantro,
1 Tbsp or more of ground cumin.

Melt the butter and add the minced garlic to it. Combine all the other ingredients in a slow cooker THEN add the sautéed garlic. Cover and cook on low for 8 - 10 hours.

Then shred or cube 8 oz of Monterey jack cheese - put this in your soup bowls. Ladle your soup over the cheese THEN sprinkle tortilla chips on the top and add a dollop of sour cream.

IT'S that easy and very yummy. I always double the recipe. It's great the first day and even better the second. And it freezes well.

Enjoy! Let me know how you like it! I'm off to get my hands dirty today - in the garden.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Some Days . . .

. . . are simply like this . . .

. . . and others are just like this! What's your day like?

Friday, January 22, 2010

Beautiful Hands

Life in my lane is definitely fast and full. Michael and I are having the time of our life seeing the hand of Creator create with sweet surprises of joy.

One of my surprises of joy is having my mother in love spend a few days with us. I am always a better person for the time spent. Her presence is a present as a friend used to say. I know some women don't have such a relationship of love, honesty and sincere appreciate, but I do. It's something we've grown into though and I treasure it greatly.

As I was putzing around the house doing a bit of this and that, she asked if there was somethingshe could do for me. When your husband's vision is to work and grow a self-sustaining urban farm there's always something someone can do.

Didn't take long to say YES.

I'd been organizing my seeds and what was left were the herbs and flowers, so my dear mother in love took to the task.

As I sat across from her at my little vintage table I found at a sweet place in Prescott, I observed her hands. I thought to myself, "They are beautiful hands." I told her so, to which she replied, "No, they are 80 year old hands." I said, "They are beautiful." I then proceeded to ask her permission to take some pictures of her, her beautiful hands and then asked if I could write about them and blog it with the pictures. She smiled and said, "Yes."

You know there is something to be said about a woman's hands (man's too). Today, I'll simply let these photo's speak.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Raw Milk Sales


Raw Milk Sales Could Reinvigorate U.S. Dairy Farms

This NY Times article definitely caught my attention and I hope it will catch yours too. It goes like this:

For four generations the Gibbs family milked cattle on their farm in a fertile valley in Allamuchy Township, New Jersey. Facing dismally low milk prices, Frank Gibbs and his sons, Brant and Keith, struggled this year to continue the tradition. But a month ago, they sold off their entire herd of nearly 200 cows.

They are not the only ones. There are now fewer than 100 New Jersey dairy farms, less than a third of the number 10 years ago.

One potential solution had eluded them, because the sale of higher-priced “raw,” or unpasteurized, milk is illegal in their state.

In September, the uniform price paid to a New Jersey farmer for pasteurized milk was $1.11 per gallon, or roughly four liters. That is 66 cents less than in July of last year.

According to the Weston A. Price Foundation . . . read the rest here and let me know what you think. Do you buy raw milk or know of someone who has or does? Would you buy raw milk or does it make you nervous? Sound out please!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Basque Country Tamborrada

It's just about Tamborrada time in Basque Country and I can still remember the only word that described my experience two Januarys ago: maxed-out-exhilaration.

San Sebastian - Donostia comes alive with the beating of the drums and these bands (formed of mostly men) march through their districts from midnight till the next day. Many of the districts (Antiguo, Centro, Parte Vieja, Amara, Gros, Ondereta, Benti Beri are a few) have their own Tamborrada bands.

Here's more about la Tamborrada.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

I'm Inspired - You're Inspired

Inspiration is flowing! I am feeling very inspired by Tracey's French Larkspur blog and she felt inspired by Lulu. Something else that has inspired me are my copies of Jeanne d' Arc magazines - of which in invested in two. I say invested because they are a bit pricey but something worth having for tons of French garden ideas.

Years ago my dear Grandfather made me a small pinkish (the end product of color used from an assortment of left over paints in his tool shed) wooded tool box similar to Tracey's. I'm inspired, indeed.

Friday, January 8, 2010

A Taste of France

A taste of France in January . . . Le-banc-moussu.over is one of my favorite French blogs to visit and catch up on life in France. For a delightful January France experience see the rest here.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Hot and Sour Cabbage Soup

A while ago I had a half head of cabbage in the refrig. I'd thought about making sauerkraut, but just haven't gotten to it yet. In the meantime while my cabbage head kept crying out for me to use her, I ran across this FABULOUS soup recipe: Hot and Sour Cabbage Soup. We'll have this again and again and again. Do try it.

Picture from Vegan Yum Yum blog

Hot and Sour Cabbage Soup Serves 6

1 Tbs Oil

1 Small Onion, minced

1 Small Cabbage, about the size of a grapefruit

2 Large Carrots, chopped

1 15oz Can Tomatoes, blended smooth

6 Cups Water

1/4 Cup Tamari, low sodium

1/3 Cup Seasoned Rice Vinegar,

1 tsp Hot Red Chili Flakes

1/2 tsp Salt, Black Pepper, to taste (a lot!)

Heat a large 5 qt soup pot that has a heavy lid over medium heat. Add oil and onion, and saute until golden. Meanwhile, quarter your cabbage, remove the core, and shred the cabbage with a large chef’s knife. Add carrots, tomatoes, cabbage and water to the pot and stir well. Add the tamari, vinegar, chili flakes and salt.Bring to a boil, cover, then turn heat down to medium low. Simmer for 20 minutes or until cabbage and carrots are the desired tenderness. Grind a lot of fresh black pepper over the top and serve.

Because I LOVE hot, I added some itsy bitsy pieces of jalapeno pepper.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Timeless and Beautiful - Some of My Random Photos' from 2009

Happy New Year! In the midst of working out in the garden at the Cactus Road Farm, I thought I'd share with you some of my favorite photo's I took this year. Only one I didn't. Can you guess which one?

May this year be one in which you experience the life that is a gift in new and fresh ways as you forever learn to look upward to your highest calling.

Happy New Year and see what others have posted at the Inspired Room.