29 January 2012

Garden 2012 Commences

This year's garden will hopefully be an improvement on last year's.  Last year's, of course, wasn't bad, but I'd like to continue moving forward.

Yesterday, I got started with my seedlings.  Neutral seeding medium, accidental purchase of several new seeds.  Why can't I just be satisfied with the 50 different types of seeds I have??  I did get some stuff to work on growing beets in containers.  I haven't been successful at growing beets in the past - radishes, yes; beets, no.  Some googling helped me to find some good advice.  This site suggests planting radishes next to your beets.  Radishes germinate faster and so that helps to mark where you've planted beets.  It would be easy enough to get 9 beets into a square foot in the raised beds, but I'd prefer to do them in containers.  I've got a few containers ready to go for both beets and carrots.  Here's hoping that works out well.

I got all of my tomatoes, peppers and eggplants started...along with a few other extras.  I've streamlined the process this year.  I've started them in 4packs under humidity domes and under our replica-of-the-sun grow light.  Now, I will have to fight the urge to sit next to them and wait for them to grow.  No, really.  I want to do that.

Additionally, I started my next loaf of bread.  This week, dad and I are doing the Classic French Bread recipe in order to do an Épi de Blé, which means wheat sheaf in French.  I modified the recipe only in that I used active dry yeast and had to rehydrate it first.  I have both types of yeast, and I'd like to deplete them evenly.  The dough was ridiculously easy to do.  It only took me about 15 minutes to get it together and into the frig for the cold rising.  This morning, it's looking great.  I can't wait to bake it!  Tonight and tomorrow, I've got dinner with friends, so I'll be baking it to share with others.  I hope it turns out well!  I've loving (loaving - haha) baking fresh bread.  It's so delicious and easy!

Initially the dough seemed a bit too dry and craggy.  I added a tiny bit extra water, and I think that evened things out.  Only the baking remains!

And lastly, for dinner last night, I stumbled upon this excellent recipe: Hearty Lentil Soup Recipe With Carrots, Tomatoes, & Smoked Sausage. I made a few changes - added less liquid to make it even chunkier.  It was excellent.  This one's going in my recipe file.

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