Aug 27, 2012

Pattypans in my garden, oh my!

picture from the internet. just wanted to show that they come in a range of colors so you know them when you see them! I grew the light green ones.

Anyone who has come within passing distance of me in the past month has probably been given some pattypan squash. Everyone has looked confused and when receiving said bounty, and the conversation always goes like this:

"Thank you!!!  Ummm... What is this?"

"It's a pattypan squash.  Basically, think zucchini when you look at it. You don't have to peel or seed it before cooking. It has a mild flavour, and can be cooked anyway you can imagine!"

"But. What do you do with it?"

So! To all of you that I have encountered, and all of you who I will encounter, and all of you who have stumbled on this blog because you have a healthy curiosity about pattypans, this is what you can do:

1. Steam them. By far the simplest and my favourite.  Throw them in an inch of water and cook them til they feel right when you poke them with a fork. Drain, and add buttersaltpepper. Delish!

2. Break out the Shake and Bake. Seriously. Slice. Coat. Bake. Easy-peasy!

3. Make soup. But don't be fussy about it. Cook pattypans in broth, then throw the whole works in a blender. Ta-dah! A delicate, sweet, light soup that even my kid liked!

of course, the sillies came out with the camera, but she did like the soup- honest!

4. Mix with other veggies from the garden, toss with a bit of olive oil and your favourite veggie spice and throw on the grill topper on the barbeque.

5. Like zucchini, they are good when they are small and they will grow to rather startling sizes if you take your eyes off of them for a second.  They are also good when they are large too.  You can even stuff and roast them.  I have not tried this recipe yet, but it looks like a gooder. Anything with bacon is good eats to me:0)  I think a quinoa stuffing would be good too. The nuttiness of the grain would pair well with the sweetness of the squash.

6. Roast them. On their own, or as part of a stew. Very yummy!

7. Eat them raw! This is my favorite in-the-garden snack, after peas. They are good added to salads. And in fact, we made coleslaw with grated pattypans too. Just use the pattypans in place of cabbage (or in addition to, if that is your whim) and make your coleslaw as per usual.

Or... what can you come up with? I want to know as I still have around a hundred kilograms of them around here:0)

Aug 24, 2012

Who Knew???

that I'd be cover girl material?????

I have to say that it is my absolute privilege to work with such an amazing team.  The laughs we have when we are working together gives me sore tummy muscles for a week. And behind the scenes are a group of amazing people who support, accept and uplift one another.  To have a small part of something so amazing humbles me. Maybe next I'll get a staple in my belly button, lol!

I can't wait for Carnival Time again!

Aug 12, 2012

Other bits of Summer...

We have been back from Quebec for three weeks now, and are finally starting to feel caught up. Immediately after we got home we repacked, slept briefly and hopped into our car for a trip to Chilliwack, BC to celebrate Grandma Derksen's life. It was a beautiful ceremony, and most of the large family was able to attend. It was great to visit with cousins, aunts and uncles and Mark's brothers (and their families), however brief.
at the church.

grandma is now right next to grandpa. 

a revisit of grandma's gravesite after the burial. 

oh boy! ceremonies over and now the cousins are free to be... cousins!

enjoyed a family dinner that evening with the whole (or close to) clan.

we stayed an extra night to spend time with family. we made blueberry tarts together....

walked the dog...

played at the park....

and enjoyed those tarts!

We got back from our impromptu trip to BC, visited our home and garden briefly before heading out to the lake for a pre-planned lake birthday party for Avery. We were lucky enough to head down the same weekend that the Vermillion fair was on, so we met mom, dad and Zxayven there. The kids went crazy on the rides and would still be sitting on spinning things if us big people didn't tire out.

the petting zoo. a million kittens and bunnies, all available for people to take home if they wanted. friends of ours did just that, and we got to meet Oreo the kitten the next day.

kids were too involved in rides for us to enjoy the chuckwagon races for long, but the little we did see was thrilling!

one of many spinning things. i can't stomach them any longer, and I am so very, very, VERY glad they are big enough to ride on their own!

of course, we had to waste a little money on the games. we actually sat by this one for quite a while waiting for all the troops to gather and didn't see one single person get a ring on the bottle. moneymaker!!!

From there we went to the cabin and had time to relax in between preparing for the usual over the top cabin feast. Mom knew that poutine was the great holiday favourite for Avery, so she put pulled pork poutine on the menu for the birthday dinner. And then invented a raspberry swirl cheesecake because that is what Avery requested:0) 

the pool kept the kids cool...

and the deck kept mama happy!

looks like everything is going her way in the water balloon fight!

ze magnificent raspberry swirl cheesecake.

grandma found mentos dispensers that fit on the the top of cola bottles and made sure the necessary ingredients were well stocked. there were many geysers made!

avery's friend Zea (and family- the new owners of Oreo the kitten) came out to celebrate with her).

aunty Jordan found a lantern that floats on the heat from a candle. it took a little persuasion, but we did have lift off for about 20 seconds. avery was freaked out and make sure she had buckets of water...

a few people framed, just for fun!

Back home, happy but weary we decided that we were not going anywhere for a while. Which was good because our garden has officially gone berserk! We have a freezer full of peas and beans, have given away as much as we have processed or used. Patapan squash we are just trying to use because I don't know what can be done to process them- if there was room in our little freezer anyway. Things have been pickled too!  And still corn (we have started eating some), carrots and onions to come.
cucumber salad ready for the fridge!

picking the insane cucumbers.

after getting a five gallon pail full of beans every 3 days, we started pulling out the bean plants. whose idea was it to plant 2.5 packs of beans, anyway?

cool as a cucumber...

one of my summer favourites- corn!

lift a leaf, find 50 beans!

patapan squash- a great discovery!!!

Everyone is officially on notice: If you come within 100 meters of us, we can give you vegetables!

The garden is taking up most of our extra time, but a few little projects have started. Mark and Avery took our beat up card table and gave it a face lift. We now have a fancy place to play 65!
guess who picked the colour?

We went to the Heritage Days festival- always interesting. It was smoking hot though!!!  Thank goodness for things like mangos on a stick!

And witnessed a wicked hail storm! There have been several this year, but this is the first one we were actually home for. LOVED it!  Avery- not so much! Her only thought the moment she sees lightening is to hide in the basement. Not raising a storm chaser here!

luckily our little garden on the side of the house was on the protected side. tomatoes survived the onslaught- hosta and flower pots, not so much.

Now you are up to date!  Summer in 60 seconds or less... hope yours is happy too!

Aug 7, 2012

August Let's Get Sketchy Challenge!

Here is the sketch!

Patterned Paper: Fancy Pants
Cardstock: Bazzill, Stampin' Up!
Letters: Prima
Acrylic Shapes: Apple Pie Memories
Stamp: My StampBox (Canadian)
Ink: Close to My Heart 
And here is what I did. Been away from my supplies for a while, and so warming up with some awesome sketches. You all know I have a million holiday photos to do something with!

If you want to play along (and I really hope you do!!!!) go here.

Aug 1, 2012

My most favorite days are coming!!!!

It is that time of year again, where paper crafters of all sorts come together to celebrate their love of crafting.  Canadian Scrapbooker Magazine is again presenting the GREAT CANADIAN SCRAPBOOK CARNIVAL on Sept 14-15 at Milenium Place, Sherwood Park and October 19-20 at BMO Place in Calgary.  Registration for classes and crops and info about the marketplace can all be found here.

See you there, eh!