Contain This: Using What You Grow

I must admit that when all this started on April 12th I kind of had it in my mind that this little adventure might end up being more of a disaster than a success. I thought I could get a few things to grow but am just in awe of how my little farm has taken off! Just look at the difference since my last post!!!!

Just like kids, it seems like my plants store up and almost overnight grow while I am sleeping. I walk out some mornings just amazed. As most of you know I was down and out for almost two weeks and am just now recovering which is kind of the topic of today’s post. No, not about me being sick, but about how plants are living things and if you are going to be gone or do get sick, you will need to find a caretaker for your plants.


For almost a week, I was unable to get up and move around and so I had to have someone every day (because that week we actually got sun) come over and water my farm. They also needed to come and move my containers around (I still have to have someone do this as they are too heavy and I am still recovering) in order to get maximum sunlight. I was actually sad that I wasn’t getting to interact with the farm, but it was kind of cool to see how much everything had grown in just the week I was out of commission.

(My Lemon Verbena is in too small of a pot and dying :( )

Sadly because I was out of commission the palate farm I wanted to try didn’t happen. And might not, since I currently am not supposed to be lifting anything over 5 pounds and soil bags and what not all are over 5 pounds. I’m not giving up hope yet, there is still plenty of time and Seattle really hasn’t had summer weather yet (it’s currently cloudy and 51F at noon).

Since everything has been growing so nicely, with the exception of my Lemon Verbena which is dying (I read up and found out that my pot size is way too small for it) I figured I need to start doing things with it. I have mixed feelings about this. I’m so proud and happy that everything is growing that I almost don’t want to use any of it. But that is silly since the whole point of growing your own farm is to have your own fruits and veggies right there. Yet in some ways my home farm and plants feel like my babies. I decided to start small and make something with herbs. I had already used my parsley and its growing back just fine, so I am hoping my dill will be doing the same.


This is a Cottage Cheese and Dill Bread. When I used to teach cooking lessons it was one of the recipes I liked to teach because, though it was yeast bread, it was one that even basic scared of yeast cooks could find success with. If you aren’t quite ready to dive into the world of bread baking, Triscuit Home Farming website has some great and easy recipes to try. This New Potatoes in Creamy Dill Sauce looks good, and would make a great side for any upcoming BBQ’s you might be hosting or going to.

Cottage Cheese and Dill Bread

2 TBSP active dry yeast
½ cup warm water (110F)
1 cup cottage cheese (can be full-fat or reduced), at room temperature
2 TBSP granulated sugar
1 heaping TBSP fresh onion, minced
1 ½ TBSP fresh dill, minced
1 TBSP salt
¼ tsp. baking soda
1 whole egg
1 egg yolk
2 tsp. olive oil
5-6 ½ cups Better for Bread Flour (or all-purpose)

Dissolve yeast in the warm water at the bottom of the mixing bowl. Let sit for about 5 minutes until it becomes creamy in color.
Add all the ingredients except the flour and mix well.
Attach the dough hook to the mixer. Add flour 1 cup at a time until you have soft dough…it’s pretty sticky too. Knead bread for 5 minutes. If you are doing it by hand, knead for about 8 minutes.
Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm place. Let rise until dough has doubled, about 1 ½ hours.
When dough has doubled, punch it down and shape into a log shape the size of your loaf pan. Place into a greased 9-inch loaf pan.
Cover loaf with plastic wrap and again place in a warm place. Let rise again for about an hour.
When loaf has risen, preheat oven to 350F.

Bake loaf for 30 minutes, and then cover with aluminum foil to prevent over browning and bake another 15-20 minutes longer. Let cool for 5 minutes and then remove from pan and continue to cool on a rack.

How about you? How is your farm coming along? What are you finding to be your biggest challenge? Remember if you don’t have one, it’s still not too late. It doesn’t have to be a container garden either. If you are interested in seeing other ideas, please visit the other bloggers who are participating in the Home Farming Movement which you can find at the Better Homes and Gardens Home Farming Challenge Page.

As always, Triscuit compensated me for this post, but the ideas, words, bad grammar, and opinions are all mine.

Comments

  1. Beautiful plants! That bread looks scrummy. Perfect with some butter and a few raddishes…

    Cute dog too!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  2. Congrats on your garden. It’s looking lovely! What fun to have fresh produce just out on your deck.

    My mom used to make dilly bread (as she called it) often, so I have very fond taste and smell memories to go with this recipe.

  3. Wow, your farm looks pretty dang good. This bread looks good, even though I don’t know what dill is (I’ll look it up later). When I first read about it, I thought you had grown cucumbers and then turned them into pickes and that’s what you used xD

    Anyways, it is exciting that things are growing, my mom’s doing the same (but not for the challenge) and everyday she’s like “Oh, I’m going to get some of my lettuce from the garden” It’s kinda funny.

  4. The dill bread looks great!

    You’re supposed to water stuff every day? No wonder my plants do so poorly. I got aphids on cilantro once, too. I think maybe I should just buy produce.

  5. Hi Peabody- can’t wait to try the bread, but unfortunately i think the recipe is missing the last few lines- can you fill it in? After pre-heating the oven to 350, i’m not sure how long to bake it for and whatnot…

    I’m in Atlanta and unfortunately, my gardens have never looked as good as yours do now!

  6. For the past 2-3 years we said we wanted to do a garden, this year we did! We did two raised beds & planted veggies & herbs right before Memorial Day. So far so good, but I guess I underestimated the start-up cost for all that dirt & lumber. Ouch! Other than that our biggest “problem” is keeping our puppy out of the garden. We put up some chicken wire & now he’s leaving the garden alone (at least for now!).

  7. Mmmmm, I do love dill! It’s a good addition to bean salad too. Just a little. I was despairing of getting the garden in this year but my wonderful daddy came up for my daughter’s birthday and TILLED my garden for me! Hooray! So in appreciation I ran to Yakima Fruit Market, got bedding plants and got it right planted. I hope four dill plants will survive my 4 and 7 year old girls… I think I need to explain more fully that if they don’t eat them down to the nubs they will grow back. ;)

  8. what else might go in that bread besides dill? I don’t like dill… but I’d be willing to try a yeast bread that isn’t scary!

  9. Your garden looks lovely and I have a serious desire to go make that bread rightnow!

  10. Lemon verben looks like that? Then what the heck did I buy from the farmers market labelled lemon verbena and which sort of looks like tarragon….it did smell very lemony though….hmmmm

  11. Peabody says:

    @na- you most likely got Lemon Thyme

  12. you have a much more green thumb than I do… I seem to kill all my herbs :(

  13. I am so inspired by the pictures you post of your food. They are always so beautiful!

  14. I Google images of lemon verbena and mine did OK exactly like this……maybe yours got mislabelled?
    http://images.google.com/search?tbm=isch&hl=en&source=hp&biw=1280&bih=800&q=lemon+verbena&gbv=2&aq=f&aqi=g10&aql=&oq=

  15. I meant I Google lemon verbena and mine looked exactly like the pictures in the link….damn auto spell check

  16. yea, the plant labeled on the blog is a geranium. not verbena.

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