Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Nature's Pest Management

While I was out picking tomatoes,
I came across Nature's way of controlling hornworms.
The white things are eggs/larvae of a Braconid Wasp.
The wasp lays the eggs on the live caterpillar, 
and the young feed on it.
And it dies.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

I came across a recipe for a chocolate zucchini bread and thought
what the heck
I have more zucchini than I know what to do with.
Since my fiance said it was "DELICIOUS"
and "GREAT"
I figured I'd share it here.

2 1/2 Cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups shredded zucchini
1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350
In a large mixing bowl combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt
set aside

In medium mixing bowl, beat sugar and eggs until fluffy
add oil and vanilla

add to dry ingredients along with the zucchini and chocolate chips
stir until combined
divide between 2 loaf pans
bake 50-60 minutes or until top is cracked and springy to touch

I think it could have used a few more chocolate chips, other than that it was pretty good.
Goes down nice with a tall glass of ice cold milk!
Check back for other possible zucchini bread recipes as I plan on trying a zucchini pineapple recipe 
and a lemon poppy seed zucchini bread recipe.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Preserving Pumpkins

It might seem a little early to start talking about pumpkins,
but I had some that were ripe.
Actually, I only had 1 ripe one,
but because the pumpkin vines were decimated
I wanted to preserve what I had.
This is a pretty easy method that doesn't require peeling the pumpkin.

First, Cut off the stem and cut the pumpkin in half.
Oh, and preheat the oven to 350

Scoop out the guts with a spoon.

Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray 
and place the pumpkins flat on the sheet.

Bake at 350 until they're done.  
I don't have a specific time to cook them.
Small pumpkins won't take long, thick pumpkins will.
Basically you want the inside mushy.

Scoop out the pumpkin with a spoon
leaving the shell behind.

Let it cool
then bag it up and freeze.

I was thrilled with how easy this was.
This year, my pumpkin cookies will be made completely from scratch!
And I decided to plant  another hill of pumpkins
(and hope I can keep the squash bugs at bay).
Even though we won't have them for Halloween,
we'll have them for pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread and pumpkin cookies.

Thursday, August 1, 2013


Our back pasture is full of purple clover.
Purple clover and butterflies.
These photos can't describe the number of butterflies 
(I counted 23 just near the area I was standing in).