Thursday, September 27, 2012

Fall Happenings

School is in full swing and I have been busy this fall maintaining the garden and getting into the fall routine. Our chickens have discovered the joy of digging up and eating potatoes. We are going to dig up the potatoes and put them in the shop to cure. They also love romaine lettuce and spinach less so. So far, they have left alone the peppers, tomatoes (which are still VERY green) the zucchini and cucumbers. Have you ever tried lemon cucumbers? They are delicious. Last weekend, we picked enough green beans to can 16 pints and had some leftover for the freezer. They are still coming on so will pick again this weekend.

We have not been able to spend much time at all outdoors do to poor air quality from the fires here in the PNW. Some days it smells like a campfire all day long and visibility is so poor it is about 1/2-3/4 mile. It would be such a lovely fall if the air were better. Winter preparations need to attended to in October, so I am hoping we can get to everything before the snow flies. 

Meanwhile, Safeway had an excellent buy on beef round tip roast for $2.49/lb. It is the kind of roast that does so well in the crock pot all day, then shreds to perfection without all those grisly, slimy parts that are yucky to peel off. It's all meat and so tender. The first roast I put garlic slivers in and rubbed with salt, pepper and some spice rub, and it had the most wonderful juices leftover to make a tasty gravy to serve with mashed potatoes. Saturday we are having company, so I am thawing one and am going to crock pot it all day with mexican seasonings so I can shred it for tacos and burritos for a mexi bar so that people can make the burritos as they like. Love to have leftovers for easy week night meals, too. What have you been cooking?

7 comments:

  1. I hope the fires end soon for you. We had swamp fires here and the smoke is a sour smoke, burns your throat and nose nothing like a campfire and not pleasant at all. Trouble is it lasts for months and they can't put it out because it burns so deep and it's thousands of acres with no roads. Eventually the storm rains put it out.

    I love the crock pot also. They take cheap cuts of meat and make them sooo tender. Have you ever tried to make ribs in one? If you haven't you got to try it, they are the best ever.

    Mike

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    1. I have never tried ribs in the crock pot. I bet they would be good, I will have to give it a try.

      I think our fires are here until the snow flies. What are the fuels in a swamp fire. Some type of tree, or vegetation?

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  2. Hey Rose,
    I hope those fires are controlled, we've had our share of them here in OK. It surely makes it hard to be outside when the smoke is heavy.
    Hopefully, you'll be able to prep for winter outside before the snow rolls in.
    I have actually just recently made beef boneless ribs in the crockpot with garlic salt, pepper, beef broth and 8 oz of bottled dark beer. Left them cook the entire day, they came out delicious.

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    1. I love fall. It's the time to dust off the crock pot and get those great meals cooking. After reading from you and Mike about how great ribs are, I will be making those in the very near future.

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  3. Hi Rose,
    The swamps are made up of thousands of small 3-5 acre islands just barely above the water level and there are leaves and pine needles to burn there. The rest of the 10's of thousands of acres are made up from floating vegetation. The floats are anywhere from 10 x 10 feet to 10 acres, not attached to the ground just floating. They are alive and thick, maybe 3 feet thick or deep. They are so dense you can get out of your boat and walk on them without falling through or getting wet. These also have dead vegetation the burns deep not so much with flames but a hot smoldering. The last fires consumed 30,000 acres of swamps. They are all set by lightening.

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    1. Wow, that is so interesting. I have never been in a swamp, just seen them on TV. I imagine they can smolder for weeks or even months. I think I will be happy with my fir tree, dead grass, and bushes smoke, compared to your sour smoke. Hope those rains come soon, Mike.

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