Unheralded

LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Red Oak House Garden Notes No. 51: Digging In The Dirt Is My Therapy

Digging in the dirt is my therapy, and we have been doing plenty of digging these past few weeks at Red Oak House. Jim has planted 25 of his heirloom tomatoes he started by seed in March and given away his remaining seedlings. He reports that the peas and potatoes have sprouted with the long-awaited arrival of sunny weather, and …


Unheralded

CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Once Around the Kitchen Vegetable Soup

Leftovers. Almost all families have them, and they can pose a dilemma — if you let them. But creative cooks know that their limitations are endless. Perhaps the best use I can think of for leftovers is a pot of soup. Consider that roast chicken or beef that you had for Sunday dinner. Either would be a great starter for soup. …


LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Red Oak House Garden Notes No. 48: Wrapping Up The Summer Season

Although the growing season began with such promise, Jim is bemoaning that it has been a disappointing year in the vegetable gardens, as he harvests the meager take of vegetables. Last year at the same time, he was bringing in 30 or so tomatoes a day, and now he only finds about three or four ripe among the hundreds of …

CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Vegetable And Sausage Skillet

Garden production can vary greatly from year to year. Just ask any gardener. One year, a person might have tremendous crop of a certain vegetable and a dismal one of another. And the next season, the tables can turn and abundance can become a smattering and a pittance a carload. Fortunately in our 2018 garden, we don’t have any vegetables …

LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Red Oak House Garden Notes No. 44: Daylilies, Daylilies, Dayliles … And A Bunch Of Voles

The daylilies are coming fast and furious, accompanied by a fierce outbreak of mosquitoes. I have 189 varieties of daylilies. My sister, Beckie, and I collect these and together we have 225 varieties. We also belong to the Bismarck-Mandan Daylily Club and have great fun together at the annual auction. On Sunday, my absolute favorite of all of the 189 …

LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Red Oak House Garden Notes No. 43: The Daylilies Enter The Stage With A Bang

Now is the time when all of our hard work in the gardens of Red Oak House pay us with the joy of abundant blossoms and fresh vegetables. We’ve eaten the first of our tomato crop ― all juicy and scrumptious, along with fresh peas and beans. Now are the days of meals we call “nothing from the store.” Meanwhile, …

LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Red Oak House Garden Notes No. 42 — A Mostly Cool June

Although we had a few scorcher days in June, most days it was cool and the Red Oak House windows remained wide open. Late June also brought the blessings of rain, an inch and a quarter in the last days of this week. We can finally breathe a sigh of relief that the drought is over. The vegetable garden looks terrific, …

LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Red Oak House Garden Notes No. 40 — It Rains!

The days continue to grow longer here in the northern latitudes as the calendar progresses toward the summer solstice, and our garden is proof of that inescapable rhythm. It finally has rained, although not much. Yet, we are extremely grateful for the precipitation, in spite of the fact that some of it fell as we were conducting our book sale. …

BEV BENDA: My Coach Bev — Are You Smarter Than A First-Grader About Fruits And Veggies?

I was listening to the radio recently when I heard a breakthrough news flash. It was so earth-shattering, I almost had to stop to reset my breathing. The radio announcer reported that “new research” is out there that implies that fruits and vegetables are healthy for you and can help prevent disease. Furthermore, if you can manage eating 10 servings a …

CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Chicken Stew

A couple of weeks ago, I was wondering what to do with some leftover chicken, and with the temps in the teens, throwing together a stew came to mind. After all, stew has been known as a comfort food a long time. The following recipe is the result. I didn’t have to venture out to buy any of the ingredients, …

CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Not Your Mom’s Ratatouille

If you’re a gardener who grows a variety of vegetables, the classic Nicoise dish, ratatouille, should be right up your alley. The stewed vegetable entree consisting of eggplant, tomato, pepper, zucchini, onion and herbs has been has been a favorite in France for many, many years, but it wasn’t until about 10 years ago that ratatouille rose to the prominence it …

CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Broccoli Pasta Salad

Salads are for summertime — especially if you have a garden. There’s nothing like a bunch of fresh veggies from the garden — all tossed together in a bowl and seasoned with a homemade vinaigrette — to start off a meal. With a nice crop of lettuce and kale in our garden, we’ve been enjoying fresh salads for going on three months now. …

LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Red Oak Garden Notes No. 26: Hosta Harvest

This year, I resolved to try new things in life. After years of my husband urging me to write more, I started my blog. It has been surprisingly gratifying. I spent a lifetime writing newsletters, press releases, letters, memos, emails and the Stoxen Library blog, and one does get better at writing by, well, writing. Reading thousands of books by …

LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Red Oak House Garden Notes No. 19

Spring flowers have given way to the summer blossoms in our garden. We eat fresh greens every day and give away radishes. The garlic crop is pathetic, and it makes me sad to look at it as, the new bed Jim prepared last fall was too rich. Our purple-hulled pea crop is also a disappointment, as I fear we were …

LILLIAN CROOK: WildDakotaWoman — Red Oak House Garden Notes No. 18

On Thursday, I spent the day on my hands and knees pulling weeds at Red Oak House. I have no complaints, as this is a quiet task, and I like quiet, solitary tasks.  The millions of elm seeds that blew in have sprouted and needed to be removed, and aspens sprout in all sorts of unwanted places. While I worked, …

CLAY JENKINSON: The Jefferson Watch — Our Gardens

When I moved back to North Dakota in 2005, I determined to plant a vegetable garden. I moved back to the Great Plains just in case the world collapsed and when it did, I wanted to be near farm country — where I could, like “The Martian,” grow just enough potatoes to survive. The moment I got all the boxes …

CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Country Goulash Skillet

Goulash has a long history, dating back to the ninth century in the medieval Kingdom of Hungary. Today, gulyás is one of Hungary’s national dishes. Without getting into too many specifics about the original version — the dish might be a little too much for those with a weak stomach — old-fashioned goulash featured meat that was cooked and dried (pemmican), stored in what we would consider …

CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Hamburger Vegetable Soup

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to be able to make great soup. That’s what I’ve been telling my friends and acquaintances for years when they’ve inquired about why my homemade soups are so tasty. Actually, there is one thing that sets good soups apart from those that are just fair or mediocre: the stock. Of course, you can …

CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Turkey Vegetable Soup

Thanksgiving Day has come and gone. But don’t tell that to those who consider the leftovers from a big feast such as “Turkey Day” a mere extension of the holiday. Not only do you have plenty of meat, potatoes, stuffing and gravy in the refrigerator for a nice day-after meal or two, there is the traditional turkey soup. Making soup is what’s on my agenda today. I have a pot …

CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Once-Around-The-Kitchen Soup

There are a lot of ways a family can stretch its budget. That’s important these days when salaries aren’t keeping up with the cost of living increases, and benefits to lower income families are being tightened at every turn. For example, one can clip coupons or grab them online for deals at the grocery store. Coupons are like free money to be used …

DARREL KOEHLER: The Prairie Gardener — A Spring Gardening Checklist

Spring has indeed sprung as gardeners prepare for another season. However, it may be a difficult year with hot, dry conditions expected by many weather forecasters. We will see. We are enjoying a very early spring with lots of wind, which sucks up the little soil moisture we had over the winter. So have a hose ready. Lawn chores lead …