Thursday, July 31, 2014

My Garden Project...

So, some may wonder what's kept me so busy that I have been neglectful posting. Well, this year, besides the little garden I put in next to the house, we got an actual garden in as well, a plot roughly 30 x 20. This is a labor of love for me this year after the terribly hard winter we had. I ordered all GMO free heirloom organic seed and all seedlings I started inside myself and then we transplanted and planted the rest the end of May. The garden is also pesticide and herbicide free.  My other half has been a great help. Most things are doing wonderfully, only a couple of duds. I plan to save seed from what I like this year. Our sweet corn is just developing ears now. I also have onions, watermelon, lettuce, parsnips, broccoli, cauliflower, pole beans and pole cucumbers. Those last two are not happy campers. I have been getting tons of zucchini from the garden for over a week now. But I'll share what else I have coming!

I have 5 varieties of tomatoes planted. Amish paste, Romas, Purple giants, Polish giants, and supersonics.

Below is my Hubbard squash

This is my spaghetti squash vines going crazy, the fence did not contain them!

This is my volunteer pumpkin. I did not plant this. But the seeds from my pumpkins I decorated with for Halloween must really like it there, because it took off! I don't have to buy pumpkins this year! Who would have guessed the rocky corner of my walk would make them happy.....

Some of the zukes I harvested...

And my kohlrabi!

This is the bed by my house with tomatoes and bell peppers planted in it and marigolds to keep them pest free. They are a good companion planting with tomatoes. 

I hope to have enough tomatoes to can salsa (it's different and awesome) and my spaghetti sauce (also my own and awesome) for this year. I am going to have tons of spaghetti squash and plan to can that as well. We hope to have enough corn to freeze a bit as well. 

And that is why I have been so busy! We've had some changes as well, and the animal parts of that will be in my next post! It's a feast or famine kind of day!


                                                                     HOLY ZUCCHINI!

You may have thought I'd fallen off the face of the earth. Not so! But I do regret not being her and

 will make up for it. Right now is zucchini season here and everyone is always trying to figure 

ways to use it. I love it in casseroles and have included my favorites along with a new one I just

 developed this past week, right below.  I also love it simply sliced thin and sauteed with sliced 

onions, garlic and butter. Or in fritters...or as faux crab cakes. Zukes are versatile and easy to 

work with. This is my concept recipe come to fruition this past week.  I wanted stuffed zukes,

 and  wanted to use corn and sausage, and had a light bulb moment adding cornbread mix. I 

looked online for something that fit the bill, but nothing quite like what I made. It got rave

reviews from family and friends last week.

Helga's Corn Stuffed Zuke Casserole

 * roughly one pound of hot sausage browned

* 3/4 cup diced onion

 * 3/4 C diced peppers

 * 2 cans of creamed corn

 * 2 big zukes, quartered and scooped out 

* corn bread mix 

*1/3 C brown sugar 


Spray a 9x11 casserole dish with cooking spray, and place quartered and scooped out zukes

 in dish. Saute onions and peppers, add to browned sausage and add two cans of creamed 

corn. Mix well and fill zukes in dish. Mix corn bread mix according to package and ad 1/3 C 

brown sugar, spread on top of stuffed zukes. Bake at 350 1 hr.

                                                              Chicken Zucchini Bake

  2-3 cups cooked cubed chicken

1/2 C diced onion

1 C grated carrots

3-4 C grated zukes

1/2 C sour cream

1 can low sodium cream of mushroom or cream of chicken soup

6 tbs butter

3 c stove top stuffing mix or dry bread cubes



Mix all together in a bowel and put in a casserole dish sprayed with non-stick spray.

 Sprinkle some sharp cheddar cheese on top. Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes.

                                                               Zucchini Casserole

3 C grated zukes

1 C chopped onion

1/2 C oil 

3 eggs

1 lg minced garlic clove

1 1/2 C Bisquick

3/4 c grated Parmesan cheese

1 tsp dill weed

1 tsp season all


Mix all together and bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until knife pulls through clean. Mine takes

 about 40 in an 8x8 baker.

This below I spied on Pinterest...Yummy!


This is a DELICIOUS way to use up some zucchini! These cookies are soft and cake like and taste wonderful!
Recipe type: Dessert
  • 1½ cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon Baking Soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¾ cup shortening
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup grated zucchini
  • 1¾ cups quick oats
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 3 Tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, nutmeg and cinnamon together in a large bowl and stir to combine ingredients well. Cut in shortening. Beat in egg until well combined. Add zucchini and oats and beat until evenly mixed in.
  3. Spoon drops of cookie dough onto greased cookie sheet.
  4. Bake at 400 degrees F for 8-10 minutes. Let cool.
  1. Cream butter in a medium bowl. Add remaining ingredients and beat until smooth. Add more milk and/or powdered sugar until desired consistency is reached.
  2. Frost cookies once they are completely cooled and sprinkle the tops with a little nutmeg.

I had some friends ask what to make with Patty Pan Squash, here's a couple good recipes!

Pan Patty squash recipes---

Stuffed Patty Pan Squash:

6 pattypan squash, stem and blossom removed

6 slices bacon

1/2 cup diced onion

1 1/2 cups soft bread crumbs

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Bring one inch of water to a boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. 

Add squash, cover, and cook for 10 minutes, or until a fork can pierce the stem with little 


 Drain, and slice off the top stem of the squash. Use a melon baller to carefully scoop out the 

centers of the squash. Reserve all of the bits of squash.

Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Remove 

bacon to paper towels, and set aside. Saute onion in bacon drippings. Chop the reserved 

squash pieces, and saute them with the onion for one minute.

Remove the skillet from heat, and stir in the breadcrumbs. Crumble the bacon, and stir into the

stuffing along with the Parmesan cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stuff each 

squash to overflowing with the mixture, and place them in a baking dish. Cover the dish loosely 

with aluminum foil.

Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until squash are heated through.

Patty Pan Squash Saute:

 3 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 cups (about 1 pound) baby zucchini, stems removed and cut in half lengthwise

2 cups (about 3/4 pound) small yellow patty pan squash, trimmed
 and cut in half crosswise

1 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black peppe

3/4 cup (about 16 leaves) fresh basil, torn and loosely packed

1/2 cup (about 32 leaves) fresh mint, loosely packed


In 10-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat, melt butter. Add zucchini and patty pans and sauté,

 stirring occasionally, until tender, 7 to 8 minutes. Transfer to large serving dish, sprinkle with 

salt and pepper, add basil and mint, and toss to combine.