I've prepared a little printable with a blueberry jam recipe from Wild Berries and a couple of labels for a jar, in case you want to give a gift to your neighbour, or something. The recipe is in English and in Swampy Cree, also known as n-dialect Cree from the Cross Lake, Norway House area. Illustrations by Julie Flett. Translation by Jennifer Thomas. This printable is here with permission from the author.Read More
Today is Eat Your Vegetables Day and I'm thinking about salads.
My new go-to vinaigrette is: 2 Tablespoons olive oil + 2 Tablespoons maple syrup + juice of 1 lime (optionally + some chili oil, or mint or basil and/or greek yogurt or buttermilk) from Hungry Ghost and my new plan is to throw grapefruit mint into everything and hope that it covers all the holes in my cooking technique:
"The leaves of this plant boast a flavour that resembles spearmint with a twist of unsweetened grapefruit." It's the newly crowned emperor of our little patio garden, though it's in its little plastic plant-shop pot indefinitely until someone can find some time to plant it.
Auggie's joke this morning: What do you call a rainbow that never goes away? A never-go-away-rainbow.
June is the prettiest month.
There are some cheap & cheerful children's hats at some of the local big box shops around here. But I just did some loose math in my head: It takes me about a couple of hours to get out to a shop and back and I don't always find what I'm looking for. Finding boy's things is especially tricky (unless you like sort of surfer-golf style, which isn't our thing). Now that I'm not pushing a sleeping baby around in a stroller, and instead have a wide-awake, running-around little boy, shopping doesn't fit in my schedule very well right now and we're not really enjoying it.
I have a few boxes of fabric to use up, so if I can do an item in under 5 hours, the extra two to four hours it takes is the cost of the item. So I've been doing little bits of sewing here and there instead of going shopping.
What got me thinking about this in the first place is that the store where we bought our summer hat last year was involved in a sweatshop incident. Overseas manufacturing is a complicated issue, and it's not that we'll never shop at a big box store again. But it's another reason I'd like us to buy less. We don't always know who is making our clothing, or in what conditions.
There are two handsome, free hat patterns available online: a unisex reversible bucket hat from Oliver + S (^ elephant cotton canvas by Daiwabo) and a simple boy's hat from By Miekke (^ leaf pattern, I think by Kokka). They were simple and turned out fine. I used cotton poplin for the lining and didn't make them reversible. If you'd like my pattern notes (especially for the By Miekke, which is in Dutch) just visit Windy later today to see them.
We found several rolls of undeveloped, unmarked film when we were moving my studio and we've been developing them. So far we've found quite a few old pets and these flowers growing near Keremeos, which I took on a trip about 10 years ago. I wonder what else we will find?
This pesto needs a generous hand with the salt and pepper. Course salt on the table is a good idea, it's easy to over- or under-season. Try not to put too in much spinach or it will lose its delicate flavour.
Spinach walnut pesto
serves 4 – 6
1 clove garlic (maybe more if serving to cool hippie children or adults)
3/4 cup walnuts
3 oz spinach (about 3 handfuls)
1/2 cup grated parmesan
3 – 4 Tablespoons olive oil
4 Tablespoons cold water
bunch fresh basil, stems removed
1/2 lemon: juice + zest
1/2 teaspoon sea salt + more for the table
1. Toast the walnuts in a pan or the stove until they smell toasty. Set aside to cool.
2. Boil, drain and set aside pasta, reserving 1/2 cup water before draining.
3. Put everything else in a blender or food processor and let it blend until it is a very creamy paste. If you are serving to a picky little person make sure you give it an extra stir and an extra blend here or they will find a tiny piece of whole spinach and have a breakdown.
4. Toss together pasta, reserved water and pasta.
Unused pesto will keep refrigerated in an airtight container for a couple of days.
I like to put this on the table because it's something Auggie will eat and it has protein and vegetables in it. I also like it because it's a fast vegetarian dish which has protein and isn't just cheesy pasta. Leftovers go well with everything.
It's too late for this year — but next summer we should get some pear green tea and keep it iced in the fridge, because it is really good.
I'm listening to the Greengage Summer by Rumer Godden. I loved her when I was eleven and still do. Her books aren't necessarily appropriate for 11-year olds, I guess. Or maybe they are? At the time I intended to have a daughter and name her Rumer, and I was very attached to it, so I was pretty annoyed with Demi Moore when she did it.
I found this pretty hard cover edition from 1958 for five dollars, but then shipping and handling is a bit much. So, I'll just put it here in my notebook. Takes up less space.
This is a greengage plum I found at the market on Sunday, which reminded me about the book in the first place. They're not my favourite to eat, but the colour is amazing.
We spent our family vacation on pretty little Hornby island. The beaches were warm and sheltered and there was nothing to do but act like cavemen. That is, we collected rocks, threw rocks into the water and skipped rocks. Every day we would swim, lie around on hot sand, and draw in the wet sand. The little rocky beach near our cabin was full of crickets, sandpipers, little crabs and rockpools and, as we were in a heatwave, the water was warm even in the evening.
We shouldn't have gone out for ice cream after dinner because it was almost bedtime, but we did, and it was a happy downtown summer evening. Lots of running and laughing on the way there and (luckily) on the way home. It's a good feeling when you're little to feel you've sneaked into the big outside world that's going on after bedtime.
^ Blue Sky (marshmallow flavour) and Coconut: "these are my best flavours". Grapefruit and Pistachio for me (they are my best flavours). I love that melon-y grapefruit colour and want it on my nails, linen and around me, generally — it's very soothing and the colour of contentment, to me.
We watched people choosing their flavours and guessed what they were, based on their colour. Generally, for sweet things, Auggie thinks that red is Apple, pink is Rose and green is Mint. As a flavour scheme, I like it much better than Cherry, Strawberry and Lime.
He used to always ask for green lollipops because he thought they tasted like roses.