Thursday, June 28, 2012


Spike Gjerde (of Woodberry Kitchen) did a talk about pickling on Homewood Campus a while back. I've been using his very simple recipe to preserve some of our CSA goodies so we can enjoy them in the off months. You can use this recipe for almost anything. Spike gave us yummy samples of pickled wild ramps, and so far I've had good success with cauliflower, carrots, and radishes. I might try kohlrabi next?

2 cups white wine vinegar (any vinegar will work)
2 cups water
3 TBLSP sugar
3 TBLSP salt
spices as desired (black peppercorn, mustard seed, bay leaf, dried chiles)

Trim off any ends, cut to desired shape and size. Wash with cold water. Drain.

In a saucepan, bring the brine to a boil.

In a separate pan, sterilize canning jar and lid in boiling water 5 minutes. Keep water on heat.

With clean hands, pack veggies into sterilized jar. Pour hot brine 3/4 way up in the jar. As the veggies soften, pack in more until full. Fill jar to fill line with brine, reserving any left over for your next pickling project - it will stay good for a long time. Using a clean spoon, jostle the contents of the jar to let any air bubbles escape.

Wipe the rim of the jar and seal it. Place jar in boiling water, fully and well submerged, for 10 minutes. Remove from hot water and let cool at room temp. Store in a cool, dark space. Can enjoy as soon as 2 weeks and for up to one year.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Melvin and I love making pizza dough from scratch. It's super-tasty, crazy-cheap, and really easy. After a few months of experimentation, I think we nailed down the perfect pizza crust.

yummy yummy ingredients:
1 package yeast
1 cup warm water
2.5 cups flour (all purpose, whole wheat, or any combo)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
2 tblsp (olive or other) oil

yummy yummy directions:
-dissolve yeast in warm water
-combine the dry ingredients with a wooden spoon or in mixer with dough hook
-mix in any fresh herbs. i <3 rosemary.
-add oil and yeast-water slowly
-mix until it looks like dough. let it sit in a bowl for 1 hour (when in a hurry you can shorten this, but the longer it sits the better)

preheat oven (and pizza stone if you have one) at 400 degrees
roll out pizza dough on floured cutting board. if you don't have a rolling pin, use a wine bottle.
place rolled-out dough on cooking sheet or hot stone. pile on sauce and toppings.
bake 20 minutes. cool for 5 before cutting.


Thursday, January 28, 2010

need blog title suggestions....

it's been forever since i've posted, and a ton has happened.

upon return to the blog world, i realize that i really want to share all of the discoveries that i've made lately. i want to write down some of the ways i save time and money and money and help the environment and also save money. but "part of the change," which once seemed a nice name for the blog (we tried 20 different things that were already taken that first night, so maybe we just gave up) now seems a little snotty. like i know how to singlehandedly make a difference in the world and i want to help you do it, too.

okay, i do know how to do that, and i am going to help you do it too. i just want to sound more humble.

(i am SO totally kidding. help me find a new name for this blog, k? and then i promise to help you save the world. 'cuz i was only kind of kidding.)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Bone Marrow Donation Registry

I said I would post more often, but maybe I meant *after* the wedding.

Just a quick post here---inspired by Melvin. He recently registered to enter the bone marrow donor registry, after we saw something on television about how the registry needs more people of color and of mixed ethnicity. (I registered too, after I saw him doing it, but apparently my marrow is in much less demand). In the process, we learned that bone marrow donation is relatively pain-free and is almost always out-patient. The website is really informative:

They are in greatest need of donors who are
  • Black or African American
  • American Indian or Alaska Native
  • Asian, including South Asian
  • Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • Multiple race
Consider registering with us and/or helping spread the word!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

June '09

It has been a long time since I've posted...been soooo busy. Highlights include:

Melvin and I made our wedding invitations. While I didn't make the paper myself, everything else is from scratch. I'll post pix soon. Mel was at least 50% of the invitation making process, and I was really impressed with all of his effort. I mean, I know he's great, but I didn't know he was great and crafty:) Mel drew the birds and crafted the language, I did the printing with an old-fashioned Japanese screen printing machine, and we assembled them in our living room. Some friends came over to help when it got extra messy and overwhelming--thank goodness! One more thing down-but so much to go.

Mel and I renewed our membership to our CSA. Tonight, in fact, we are going to a picnic at One Straw Farm. We will get a tour, hear live music, and eat food of our own creation. I'm making a salad with beets, snap peas (from the farm) and potato (not from the farm). The root veggies are boiling (separately) now. I'll blanch the peas, peel and cool and chop everything, and then toss it in a vinaigrette (maybe white vinegar, EVOO, fresh lemon juice and zest, salt/pepper/garlic?) and sprinkle parmesan. Other picnic items look to be devilled eggs, carrot sticks, some dried fruit. Fun!

this is all for now, but i'll try to post a little more regularly:)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

fighting war with art:)

it's been too long since i last posted! i guess i've been pretty focused on the "night of the arts" we are putting on this wednesday at new song. we are exploring the theme of war vs. peace and violence vs. non-violence through the arts. i promise it is a really special event that has taken a lot of time and attention recently. for now, this is my change.

please join us if you are in the area. it's free, it's short, and it will be totally inspirational. my kids are freaking brilliant!! (okay, i'm biased, but really. they're fabulous.)

more info!!

please join us:)

Monday, May 4, 2009

small step --> big change

one of the easiest ways we've found to save money and the environment is to hang all of our clothes to dry them, rather than run the dryer. our clothes last way longer, we diminish our carbon footprint, we lowered our utility bill considerably. i swear by this.

if you have a clothesline, or maybe a balcony, you can hang dry large blankets and sheets too.

other small changes
-i shower at the gym as often as possible. it lowers my utility bill, and my showers there are super quick so maybe it's pro-environment too
-where we live, you can opt to get your energy from wind turbines through the energy company you already use. same price or slightly less, way better for the environment. worth looking in to.
-shop at the goodwill. i can't say enough about this. just take my recital dresses---each one cost me $12 or $15, looked like new, and would have cost me at least $100 each at macy's. i have at least 10 gowns like this--crazy savings!! plus, i loan them to all my girlfriends when they have recitals; they just pay for the cleaning. awesome.

do you have other tips? leave in comments!