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IMG_20160920_143854353_HDRwatermarkWhen I first started canning, I’d get overwhelmed with a particular item of produce that was available in abundance, and thumb through my canning books looking for recipes that used that fruit or vegetable. For instance, I once had an abundance of peaches, and had already canned plenty of them, so I made peach chutney. The problem? We don’t really eat chutney (this recipe excepted). So it languished on the shelf, beautiful but unwanted, and eventually, several years later, I opened the jars and fed it to the chickens. Read the rest of this entry »

Pineapple WeedThis one comes with a memory. I went to elementary/junior-high/high school in a small town in northern California. This was before the trend to make “middle school” sixth, seventh and eighth grade, so we had a sixth grade graduation, then went to junior high for two years, had had an eighth grade graduation, and went on to high school. The junior high and the high school were in the same building, and my graduating class in high school was about 40 kids. It was a very small town. Read the rest of this entry »

Hobbit Hound Charlie

Because Charlie has such big feet, my husband has started calling him the “Hobbit Hound”.

So, the Saturday downtown farmers market started April 30th, and I’ve started attending the Pendleton market on the 2nd and 4th Friday evenings of the month, starting May 13th. Both have been very successful so far. May is always a good month for markets! Come down and see me. Read the rest of this entry »

Dandelion w/o flowersI’ve been learning about edible weeds for a long long time. I have a used copy of “Stalking the Wild Asparagus” that I bought almost 30 years ago. But there is one problem. I never actually get around to eating the wild plants. I know you CAN eat them, but I almost never do. And if the situation ever became more critical (I NEEDED to know how to prepare and eat them) I’d be flying by the seat of my pants and challenging my palate while already dealing with a stressful situation. Not a good combination. Read the rest of this entry »

Striped German Heirloom, 1.8 lbs, 2015

Striped German – an Heirloom, weighing in at 1.8 lbs!

I’ve been on a search for the perfect 8 oz tomato. I grow a lot of lovely heirlooms. German Pink, Dester, Stripped German. Beautiful, huge tomatoes. Some well over 1 lb. But not everyone at market wants to pay $3 or more for ONE tomato. So I’ve been looking for a medium sized red tomato with excellent flavor. What I really want is a red version of Valencia, which is a fantastic yellow/orange heirloom that I’ve been growing for the last two years. Read the rest of this entry »

Ripe SerranosThat moment when you realize you are almost out of garlic chili sauce. And then the dawning realization of “how hard can this be, really, to make?” given that you are staring at a pile of ripe serrano peppers on your counter. The ingredients on the side of the jar are chilies, garlic, salt and vinegar, plus preservatives to make it shelf stable. Read the rest of this entry »

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Braeburn

We live in the land of apples here in Walla Walla. According to the US Ag statistics, Washington produces about 58% of the apples grown in the United States, and 68% of those grown for fresh consumption. A lot of those apples are grown within about 50 miles of where we live (though Yakima and Grant counties far out produce us). So much so that with the record-breaking crop this year, I heard of an entire field of gala that the farmer was just going to leave on the trees until they dropped, as all the cold storage warehouses were full and galas don’t command the big prices that honeycrisp do. Made me want to buy a pig, just to fatten it up on apples! Read the rest of this entry »

San Marzano Redorta GreenI’ve grown a LOT of different paste tomatoes over the years. When I was in Colorado, they were always short season determinates. When I first moved to southeast Washington, I tried all of those same varieties here since I still had the seeds. Nothing spectacular came of it.¬† Last year, I tried Amish Paste (for the third and last time),¬†Federle and Martino’s Roma. I had bad problems with blossom end rot and wasn’t impressed with any of them.

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Soaps and toiletries side. First market of the year in May.

Well, June is turning out to be a busy month. I started with the Downtown Walla Walla Farmers market on Saturdays in May. Then on the 4th of June I added the Milton-Freewater afternoon market on Wednesdays and the twilight market on 2nd Street in Walla Walla on Thursdays. Sales have been great. But doing three markets a week is a lot harder than doing two. Especially when my booth at the Walla Walla Thursday market was on the sunny side of the street, on heated black asphalt until the sun dips behind the buildings at about 6:00 pm. Read the rest of this entry »

CharlieWishboneI had not planned to end up with 13 turkeys this year. My intention was to raise 3 for ourselves, sell any extra as babies, and then butcher 3 in the fall for our own use, leaving 3 to carry over into next year. So I incubated a batch of eggs in April and thought I was good to go. The girls, Gracie-mae and Peggy-sue, had other ideas. They kept starting nest and brooding, and brooding, and brooding. I did sell a few, and we lost a few to predation, but we ended up with 13 mostly grown turkeys by the time Thanksgiving rolled around. Read the rest of this entry »

Jennifer Kleffner

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