Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Seed Starting Part II

Remember how I was telling you a while ago about how determined I was to make starting seeds indoors really work for me this year? Well I think it's safe to say it has worked! YAAAAY!
Every once and a while (ok all the time) I look at my plants I've started from seed and seriously can't believe that I GREW THEM! They look like "real" plants!!
My tomato plants are all looking so nice and strong. I've already started hardening off the really big ones outside (fingers crossed I don't regret that decision).

The bok choy, tatsoi and marigold pictured above were all started indoors and all appear to be very happy now that they've been transplanted to my garden. I've sown some more seeds of both greens directly so I can hopefully have a continued harvest. 

I will say that starting these greens indoors was mildly frustrating. I really only have 2 good looking bok choy plants out of close to a dozen. They were just SO leggy and seemed really unhappy indoors. I was able to find a couple good looking sprouts and transplant them to larger containers indoors (which resulted in these bad boys) but I feel like greens are really so much happier to just start outdoors. I've noticed the same with all my other greens too, such as arugula, romaine lettuce, etc. I'm not sure if I would start them again inside next year or not. I feel like I didn't get much quantity considering how many seeds germinated, but it sure is nice to have such well established greens this early in my garden. Someday I'll hopefully have cold frames and then will be able to grow greens outdoors all year round.

Before my husband had time to build our garden boxes I was feeling rather antsy and just couldn't wait to get some things growing outside so I started some radishes, various lettuce mixes, swiss chard and chives in containers. Seeing those little red gems poking out from the soil just makes me so happy.

How is your garden growing? 
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Friday, May 18, 2012

Wilted Swiss Chard Potato Salad

Everyone keeps asking me if I've been having any strange cravings while pregnant. I feel like I'm almost disappointing people when I say no, not really. I remember asking pregnant friends the same thing, so curious of the weird and wacky food combinations they were eating. But most of them, like myself had nothing interesting to share.
I do feel like I'm eating a little differently but not all that "weird". There were a few weeks there when I could eat a bowl of cherry tomatoes simply dressed a few times a day, yet now it just doesn't appeal to me in the same way.
Around the same time I'd also slather a piece of toast with an inch thick layer of herb goat cheese and savour every tangy bite.
Lately I'd be pretty happy to eat some sort of grilled sausage on a bun smothered in mustard at any point in the day, but that's about it for real "cravings".

For the rest of the time I'm still trying to just enjoy all that spring has to offer. This salad is a perfect example of such. Asparagus, swiss chard and quinoa make this potato salad feel like a much healthier version of it's usual self.

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Saturday, May 5, 2012

Knitted Baby Onesie

I've had my eye on this adorable little onesie pattern for what seems like forever. Probably since long before I was pregnant actually, back when my baby knits were only for friends. 
I made it in approximately a 6 month-ish size hoping that it'll be winter by the time our son will fit into it. I'm now making a little hat to match in the same colour as the trim and maybe I'll make a matching pair of socks too.  Somebody's going to be cute as a button!

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Friday, May 4, 2012

Mango, Cucumber and Radish Salad

I think all of us who try to eat locally can admit that there are times we're weak and break down and buy produce "from away". My toughest time (as I've mentioned before) is usually towards the end of winter when I just can't eat another root vegetable and all I want are greens. Thankfully there are a few great sources for early spring greens here in Halifax to quench the craving.
However this spring my pregnancy has really thrown me for a loop. I've been craving fruit like nobody's business and can't get it off my mind. Apples aren't really cutting it anymore and lately I've been trying to satisfy myself with oodles of cherry tomatoes. Strawberries and peaches are what I'm really after but I still have so long to wait! I recently felt it was time to make the executive decision to just buy some imported fruit and let my body be happy.

So I've been scarfing down navel oranges and enjoying every single sweet, sticky bite. There truthfully wasn't much else in the grocery store that appealed to me...except for mangoes. Juicy, glorious mangoes.
Funny enough it was while looking for new recipe ideas for radishes that I found this mango salad recipe. It was so fresh, bright, juicy and fantastic. I might just have to make it one more time...
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