Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Wednesday, June 6, 2012
However, Mrs. McAdams and Mr. Whieldon are quick to point out that the kids deserve all of the credit. The English and Environmental Science students wrote grants, fundraised, created promotional videos, constructed vegetable beds, installed irrigation, raked mulch, planted trees & seeds, built a fence, dug up rocks (sometimes boulders!), and watered and weeded the garden. They did a super job and should be very proud of themselves!
During the dedication ceremony IEUA President, Mr. Terry Catlin, spoke to the crowd about how pleased he was with the school garden and the importance of teaching the next generation about water conservation.
Student Body President and gardener extraordinaire, Garrett Lee, spoke about the benefits of the garden and how working on it has influenced what he will study in college.
Mr. Rick Abilez, Grounds Foreman Supervisor for Upland Unified School District, was honored by being recognized for his assistance and enthusiasm with the Garden in Every School program. Mr. Andrew Kanzler, the Garden in Every School Coordinator, presented Mr. Abilez with a certificate of gratitude at the end of the ceremony and praised his hard work and willingness to help.
Toward the end of the event, the participants moved from the cafeteria to the garden for the ribbon cutting ceremony--Mrs. McAdams did the honors! Representatives from several public agencies were there to commemorate the garden as well, including the Superintendent of Upland Unified School District, Mr. Gary Rutherford, Upland City Council Member, Mr. Gino Filippi, and IEUA President, Mr. Terry Catlin.
The kids were excited to share their knowledge and experience with us regarding the garden and they were generous enough to share the fruits of their labor!
Several students emptied out the potato bins they planted in January and passed out fresh potatoes.
Friday, May 11, 2012
Photo of Oregano provided by Hidetsugu Tonomura
Oregano can be grown in the ground or in a pot, but be careful, this herb spreads quickly.
Any kind of potatoes will work in place of the fingerlings. Just cut them up into 2-inch chunks.
2 cups fresh parsley leaves
1 cup fresh oregano leaves
2 tbsp. grated fresh Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp. sliced almonds, toasted
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1/4 tsp. salt
2 large garlic cloves, peeled
2 tbsp. olive oil
16 fingerling poatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds)
Monday, April 30, 2012
In addition to being a culinary staple, thyme has incredible properties that make it a great plant for drought-tolerant gardens. One species of thyme in particular, Thymus Serpyllum, also know as Creeping or Magic Carpet Thyme, spreads along the earth as a low-lying groundcover. Groundcovers are particular helpful at increasing soil stability, moisture retention, and weed suppression. Also, Creeping Thyme is a perennial that flowers all summer and looks beautiful when it creates a bed of flowers.
RECIPES: Zucchini and Thyme & Green Beans with Almonds and Thyme
Thyme is used as a spice in meat and veggies dishes, and also in sauces, soups, and as a garnish. We've chosen a couple of recipes (see links below) that you can try over the summer as they are paired with seasonally appropriate vegetables. Zucchini are notoriously prolific in the summer, as are green beans. Please enjoy and let us know if you liked these recipes!
Friday, April 20, 2012
There are several other species of sage that are useful for more than just cooking and medicinal applications. Most of the California coastline and some inland areas, particularly in the central and southern parts of the state, are home to coastal sage scrub (see map of California for locations). 'Sage scrub' is a catch-all term that encompasses several plant species, not just those in the genus Salvia. For example, the scientific name for California Sagebrush is Artemisia californica, which is outside of the genus Salvia. The most common species of Salvia that grow in the coastal sage scrub areas are Black Sage (Salvia mellifera), White Sage (Salvia apiana), and Purple Sage (Salvia leucophylla). The coastal sage scrub range has been reduced over time because of development practices. In many counties and cities, it has been given a protected status and permits are required to remove it for further development. In addition to preserving coastal sage scrub for its unique character, these plant species are protected because they provide habitat for several animal and insect species. Most notably, the California gnatcatcher is a federally-listed threatened species, and requires coastal sage scrub (critical habitat) for its survival. Other species commonly found in coastal sage scrub are: Red-Diamond Rattlesnakes, Orange-Throated Whiptails, Cactus Wrens, and Sage Sparrows (see picture below).
Common Sage has a strong, peppery taste that can be quite pungent and earthy. It is usually used in meat rubs, stuffings, and sauces. The recipe that we're showcasing today uses sage as the main flavorant for a burnt butter sauce, which is absolutely delicious. There are several variations of this recipe. The one from the Food Network link (provided below) includes red pepper flakes, but you can omit it if you like (check the comments to see how other chefs personalized this recipe). If you're not sure what to pair it with, I really enjoy this sauce with pumpkin or squash ravioli. Homemade potato or sweet potato gnocci is fabulous as well.
The sauce is easy make. First add the indicated amount of butter to the pan and cook on medium-high heat until it starts to brown and the aroma deepens. Then add the sage directly to the butter. The sage will immediately begin to fry and crisp up. If you are going to add gnocchi or pasta make sure you time it to finish at the same time as the sauce (it only takes a minute or two to make). Toss the pasta/gnocchi with the sauce and serve with freshly grated parmesan cheese. Enjoy!
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
To use the cutting technique, look for a stem without flowers that is about 4-7 inches long. Clip the base of the stem at a 45 degree angle. Place the newly cut stem into a clear glass of water (if you can't submerge the stem in water right away, wrap it in a wet cloth until you can). After a week the rosemary cutting will begin to grow roots and after two weeks the roots should be long enough to replant the cutting. If your cutting does not sprout roots after 9-10 days, try taking another cutting and start from scratch. The best time to try the cutting technique is in the fall, when the stem will spend more energy developing roots as opposed to trying to produce flowers.
Rosemary is a highly aromatic herb that has many culinary properties. It has been used as a meat preservative, a flavorant, and in smoking applications (since it is rather woody). It has a very strong scent and flavor and people tend to cook or pair it with other robust flavors like red meats, mushrooms, and red wines, but rosemary has some subtler applications that many cooks can appreciate. For example, the recipe described below mixes rosemary with sugar, jam, and cream:
Photo of Rosemary Scone courtesy of esimpraim
Rosemary scones are not your typical sweet and candied confection. The addition of rosemary brings a whole new layer of depth and flavoring to the scone. To achieve the subtle flavoring, make sure you chop the rosemary leaves finely and toss out any of the wooden stems. Also, you may add whatever jam you prefer to the center of the scone, but I prefer raspberry or strawberry. Here is a link to a Strawberry and Rosemary Scone recipe created by Giada de Laurentiis: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/strawberry-and-rosemary-scones-recipe/index.html.ENJOY!