Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Odds and ends...

Yeah yeah, it's a little late this week. This is just a few things before next weeks premier of the new project. Ugh.

First and for most, it's "skeeter" season. You know, these little &%$#@&&%s...


I'm a magnet for them. I have tried everything short of soaking myself in DDT to every possible natural repellent out there. However, no matter what I coat myself in, they love me. LOVE me. My siblings know full well of the famous "ear incident" when I was a wee lad. It was ugly.

So what's the point of this? Am I now going to promote some crazy @ss cure all repellent? No. I've given myself over to the beast. The winged demons have won. (hangs head in shame) I now treat the after effects. You know, the &%$#@ Bites!!!

We all know how much those stings just itch beyond reality, right? But honestly, when you have a bite, doesn't scratching one now and then feel oh soooooooo goooooooooooood. Ahhhhhhhh, yeah, that's the stuff. But what's left? An ugly mess.

So now, I use this...(no the company hasn't sent me a free case or anything. Not that I would turn it down. I would probably bathe in it. Hmmm, okay, a little weird)
It works. Let me say that again, IT WORKS! And like the old Brill Cream commercials, "A little dab with do ya!"

As soon as I feel the itch, I rub some on, in about 30 seconds, no itch. I swear by it. And it lasts. I find that I rarely if ever have to reapply it.

So this is just me Suburban Man - Dweller dude just passing a long a little friendly tip to beat the itch. :)

Now back to our regular programming.

Onions. We eat them and some people smell like them.

As I wrote last week, I pulled up a mess of them. I still have some fat ones in the ground that I will yank out this coming weekend.

But here is the process if you wish to preserve your onions. Pretty simple actually.

First grow some onions then pick'em...(or buy them)

You will know they are ready to pick when the tops fall over.

Let them sit about 48 hours in a dark place.

Wash them.

Cut off the stems and roots. (if you pick them earlier before the stems fall over, you can also use the stems in cooking. They are something like chives)

I know, big dramatic difference from the last photo.

Then peel them.

Naked onions.

Then mince in a food processor.

Here they are packed up and ready for the deep freeze.

Out of that bowl we got 5 bags of onions for future use.

Once frozen, you can just break off what you need for cooking. The flatter they are, the easier they are to deal with later. We packed ours a little full, so we will pay for that later. "Honey, have you a hammer handy?!"

I still have an equal amount of onions yet to harvest and they are much bigger so our yield will be that much more.

Now I have a special technique for dealing with the crying game. Wait, what? I'm talking about cutting onions! The popular belief is to cut them under running water. 1) it's a colossal waste of water 2) have you ever actually tried it in volume? 3) frankly, it's a real pain.

So how do I solve this perplexing matter?

Here is my secret. Swim goggles. That's right, you heard me, swim goggles. No weeping, no crying, no boo hooing. And I can guarantee you will never ever see a photo of me on here wearing goggles and cutting onions, but it works. Oh all right...


It's the pink what does it!

So that's it for this week! :) One of my 3 1/2 or so readers requested a few updated photos of my garden, here you go!


(This was taken last week. They are much bigger now.)

Egg Plant...

We pulled two huge egg plants off already. I have fried some up and froze them, in preparation for egg plant parmesan. (I have to wait until after we harvest our tomatoes).

The big plan will be: our egg plants, our tomatoes and our mozzarella cheese (I will be attempting to make mozzarella again. Wish me luck!)

If you look to the right of the upper egg plant...plant, you will see a little something growing. Yet another surprise plant growing from my compost. I think it's cucumber, but I'm not quite sure what it is yet. I'll include a photo of it next week.

The last of the yellow onions and the new red onions...

(That black thing is my 60% sun shade block. I put that on my new plants and plants that can't take the intense Texas sun at the height of the day)

Peppers and cucumbers...


They are still little things but I have a few peppers already and the anti-dog-with-a-thousand-teeth barrier works double duty as an impromptu trellis for the cucumbers. :)

Lastly, I leave you with a couple of photos...




(Thank you Mr. Hand)

And as always, Green is Good!


Sue said...

Your garden looks beautiful! Thanks for the onion tip. I didn't know you could freeze chopped onions. Love the goggles, too LOL

NJCher said...

Gorgeous eggplant! Is there anything like fresh stuff out of garden? I don't think so. It's heaven!

I dare anyone to find an eggplant like that at a store.

I'd never have thought of the goggles. Homegrown onions are so pungent that I'd have processed them outside if it weren't for this tip. I do have some goggles and I think I will try this. I know what my husband's response will be, too. He will silently put a metal colander on his head and join me in the onion processing.

Thanks for posting the pics of your raised beds close up. . I see that you have chicken wire around it to protect from pests. What forms the arch? PVC pipe? If so, that must have taken some skill to get them so uniform.