Wednesday, June 3, 2009

rhubarb yogurt

rhubarb yogurt, originally uploaded by birchmama.

The drink of early last summer was rhubarb soda with vodka (I added a lot less water and sugar than this recipe though). This summer we decided to try rhubarb bellini. I quite liked them though Andy couldn't get by the texture. I would have taken a photo of it but they looked, to be honest, like glasses of gravy! The batch of rhubarb wasn't very pink so the puree wasn't very colorful - more like apple sauce. Instead, here is my breakfast the day after - left over puree spooned over yogurt. I think this may be my favorite yogurt flavor now. Rhubarb freezes so well that I can make this when it is out of season. I already have a gallon of it chopped and frozen now but I think I'll do some more while I still can.

I'm trying to eat rhubarb and asparagus as often as possible because it is such a fleeting season. Already some of the asparagus fields have gone to seed, but I can feel the abundance of summer coming over the horizon. Soon the farmers' markets and roadside stands will be full and we'll have more choices than we know what to do with. Such bliss.

Monday, June 1, 2009

collected this morning

collected, originally uploaded by birchmama.

We had a lovely sunny day today and so the children and I spent the morning out in the yard. Inspired by this lovely blog we decided to pick what plants we could find in the grass. Truth be told, we don't have much grass in the back of the house - most of it is chickweed and plantain - which I really don't mind. The front yard is all torn up and, because we won't really use it and so I don't want to waste water and mowing energy on a big empty lawn, we are looking into planting it with wild flowers in the style of a Lammas Field that is mowed down in August as fodder for the animals. Mowing once or twice a year is much more my style.

We found, from left to right, chickweed, buttercups, purple fleabane, bluets, bugleweed, white clover. The is also some yarrow in the front yard but it needs a bit longer before the flowers open. I'm having fun sharing some common plant knowledge with Miryam that I learned while apprenticing with an herbalist before she was born. While we were collecting I was reminded of a book that I'll have to dig out and revisit with her called The Herbalist of Yarrow. Scattered throughout the book are sidebars with recipes for the herbal preparations used in the story. We've just finished two readings of the Lauren Child illustrated Pippi so we're starting to move into books with less and less pictures which opens up our bedtime reading choices, thankfully. It will be nice to start having my little one help wildcraft and mix up remedies. This is knowledge that I have worked, and am working, so hard to learn that she will grow up knowing from childhood. Such a gift.

And such a lovely day.