Archive for July, 2011

Sunday Brunch

Posted on July 31st, 2011 by Tonia 2 Comments

We were out a *little* past our bedtime last night with friends. Ok, a lot past. And {old farts that we are} we paid for it bigtime this morning in the form of raging headaches and general orneriness. Luckily, we have a secret weapon against such mornings: brunch.

Brunch is maybe my most favorite thing that humans ever invented. Brunch is especially awesome when its contents are composed of fresh, local ingredients. And in that regard at least, this was a rockstar brunch.

The pretty pink potatoes came out of our garden, and so did the kale that we sautéed them with. The flour in the pancakes was grown and ground down the road from us. The milk, too. I picked the blueberries yesterday at a farm in Bayfield. The eggs came from Sarah & Bob’s chickens, living in our yard. The maple syrup was made by my family. The bacon came from Blaise and Jes’s farm down the road.

We fed our souls with laughter and fellowship, and our bellies with yummy morsels.

See how much happier we all look already? I’m telling ya, brunch is a miracle worker.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again- we’re so blessed to live in a community full of family farms and folks who care about their community, the earth, and good food. Couldn’t ask for anything more than this right here.

And after this happened, I got my bum to the beach, read my book and fell asleep for a while, and floated in {the deliciously ice-cold} Lake Superior for two whole hours. So in other words, this was a pretty fantastic weekend.

Keeping Up with the Edwards

Posted on July 29th, 2011 by Tonia 3 Comments

“In [Sarah’s] approach to housekeeping, efficiency was tempered by composure. She knew how to keep a house clean at its vitals, without stuffy cupboards left unaired or parlors sealed off. The house was open, used, full of clues that the family living in it had vivid interests. Books were left on tables, actually being read, not used as parlor props. There would be needlepoint on a rack by a sunny window and a lute in a corner. Esther, singing, might be putting up a hem for Sukey while a boy did his Latin lesson. It was the opposite of the kind of house where things were preserved in mothballs in locked boxes. Its ambiance was of windows flung open, of easy access.”

– Excerpt from Marriage to a Difficult Man, by Elizabeth D. Dodds.

Is there a character in a book or movie that you aspire to be like? I can think of several.

I’ll mostly be doing chores around the house this weekend with this playlist on repeat. But I also hope to find time to read, preferably at the beach with a big floppy hat.

I hope you have a splendid weekend- productive, fun, and rejuvenating.

Cherries up the Wahzoo.

Posted on July 28th, 2011 by Tonia 7 Comments

It’s cherry-pickin’ time ’round here! The big mature sour-cherry tree and the little sapling got ripe at the exact same time, so yesterday we spent our whole afternoon harvesting from the two.

Why Mike got to pick from the short tree and I had to pick from the tall tree, I have no clue.

They’re really sour right off the tree, but they make delicious preserves with a little sugar. We pitted them, mashed them just a little bit- leaving plenty of chunks- and cooked them down {about four parts cherries to one part sugar, and a dash of fresh lemon juice} until the consistency seemed right. Success! It’s sweet and tangy and has that certain-summery-something that cherries have.

It’s amazing how much fruit the two trees produced, even considering that some of it had already been snuck away by critters. Someday we’ll have a couple dozen cherry trees to harvest from! And it will be glorious.

Local Wheat Berry Salad

Posted on July 27th, 2011 by Tonia No Comments

Let me count the ways in which I love Maple Hill Farm. It’s right down the road from us, which makes shopping pretty easy. They do pigs, wheat/flour, veggies, soap, yarn, and more. They’re super friendly, happy to answer questions and spend time visiting whenever we drop in.

I brought home some of their wheat berries the other day and made this recipe with them. It was so fresh, summery, and filling {I wish I had doubled the batch because just the two of us gobbled it all down immediately.}


1 cup uncooked farro or wheat berries
1 cup shelled green peas (about 3/4 pound unshelled)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup cubed seeded watermelon
1 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/3 cup (1 1/2 ounces) shaved fresh pecorino Romano cheese


1. Place wheat berries in a large saucepan, and cover with water to 2 inches above berries. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 23 minutes or until desired degree of doneness.
2. Add green peas to pan with wheat berries, and cook for 2 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain and rinse berry mixture with cold water; drain.
3. Combine berry mixture, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper in a large bowl. Add the watermelon cubes and 1 cup chopped parsley, and toss gently to combine. Top with pecorino cheese.