* i've been cleaning & purging like a MAD woman getting ready for my big "EVERYTHING MUST GO "yard sale. every other weekend it has been 60-70 degrees, but of course this weekend it was 100 degrees. BLEH WAAAY TOO HOT! i did pretty well, but the main thing is the stuff (3 years of moving worth) is FINALLY GONE!!! then....
*we had a jolting 5.4 earthquake. enough to wake 3 up from her nap, & go to our safe spot. but by then of course it was over & we were still safe thanks the Lord. then...
* we had a traumatic event involving a baby rattlesnake on our courtyard (up by our front door) poor little guy. even though it was defending himself as he was created to do, baby rattlesnakes are the most dangerous because they cannot control their venom so it had to be removed forever. we have never seen anything shot to death so it was VERY frightening for all -God's-creature-loving us, but thank God for our helpful neighbor. for this mama though, having such a dangerous critter on my porch where my kiddies play, was equally as, if not even more frightening. it was right out the door, where little barefeet could have walked right into it, good thing the doggies encountered it first & alerted us. then....
* the next day somehow it was 90 degrees & we had a freak lightening storm...i'm talking amazingly beautiful electric streaks shooting to Earth from the heavens all of a sudden. add rain. a little summer storm, enough to make everything hot & humid. soooo then....
* we headed to our weekly beach trip the next day. we had so much fun with 8 beach loving little girls. it was way too hot to return home (our home has no heat or A/C), so we stayed in the water for 6 hrs. only came out of the cool ocean to buy ice cream cones & eat kale/ basil pesto pasta salad for lunch. for the pasta salad i added kale to my pesto ingredients in the blender. added it to rotelle pasta, cherry tomatoes, kalamatas,chopped broccoli, shredded parm, herbs from my garden & a sprinkle of red wine vinegar. YUM!
* a generous friend shared a BIG box from his garden packed with a medley of fresh produce. there were lettuces, carrots, yellow squash & different varieties of beets. i was most excited to discover the chiogga beets. i have been waiting to try them but couldn't ever find them, so i had much fun experimenting. i made a fave of mine raw kale, beet, sweet potato salad w/ lemon chili powder dressing & a new favorite roasted beet, walnut & blue cheese salad with citrus dressing. OMG!!! (directions below) even better when you share with neighbors at an impromtu lunch. also...
* PET SITTING:: also did a ton of pet sitting jobs. Q :: what do you get when you pet sit chickens? A :: tons of fresh eggs to bake cupcakes for a little sister who turned 5 & other goodies.
chiogga beets, aren't they pretty
roasted beet, blue cheese & walnut salad w/ citrus dressing (directions below)
fresh eggs the girls earned petsitting. can't wait to make them into goodies
:: ROASTED BEET, WALNUT & BLUE CHEESE SALAD W/ CITRUS DRESSING ::
preheat oven to 350 degrees F
clean, trim & slice @ 6 beets (i mixed varieties) place in baking pan along with sliced onions
drizzle with olive, sprinkle with s&p
bake for @ 1 hour until they are fork tender
set aside to cool
:: CITRUS DRESSING ::
in a sauce pan on medium heat reduce 3 cups of blood orange juice (any orange will work), then add @ 1/2 cups of lemon juice & s&p.
i added a dash of balsamic vinegar to taste, but that's optional.
after the juices cook together add @ 6 cloves, 6 allspice berries, 1/4 tsp of anise seeds (these spices are optional, but deepen the flavor).
last add 3/4 cup of olive oil
set aside to cool
to assemble the salad mix all of the above on a bed of greens, sprinkle with blue cheese & walnut, & enjoy!
:: RAW LACINATO KALE, SWEET POTATO & BEET SALAD ::
this is one of my fave salads! sounds weird, no one believes me, but everyone loves it after trying it. the beets & sweet potatoes sweeten after they marinate for about an hour.
shred or finely chop 1/2 bunch kale (ribbons of dark lacinato are my choice), 1 large sweet potatoes & 2 beets. (can experiment with other veggies or fruit ex: carrots) & combine in a bowl
in a separate bowl combine @ 1/2 cup of olive oil, 1/2 cup lemon juice, 1 Tbsp of chili powder, s&p (all of these ingredients to your taste)
mix spices together then pour over veggies
let marinate for at least an hour
i also like to sprinkle seeds or nuts on top
this recipe makes enough for @ 4 small side portions
HAVE FUN EXPERIMENTING FRIENDS!