Tamba di Bhaji with Rainbow Chard ~ for Cooking with Cookbook Challenge

cookbook shelf

part ofย  our collection of cookbooks

Hello friends!

This is part of July Week 2 Cooking From Cookbook Challenge Group.

Cooking from Cookbook Challenge from Cooking4allseasons

Actually, this is my first post for S’s Cooking from Cookbook Challenge #56. I’m sorry I didn’t get in last weekend but I’ll try to do two posts on another weekend to make up for it. I hope that’s ok ๐Ÿ™‚

rainbow chard

rainbow chard

This was the perfect challenge for me, because I collect cookbooks. When I moved from Massachusetts to the north woods of Michigan, one of the first things I wanted unpacked was my collection — at least some of it — and Dear G obliged by building a bookshelf in the kitchen right under the new spice cabinet! Now it’s overflowing with his cookbooks and mine — maybe time for a new shelf this fall? ๐Ÿ˜‰

I was so glad to get back to the bookshelf and away from the omnipresent online search for recipes. I spent several happy evenings this week dusting off some old friends from the collection, until I finally settled on a recipe from this tome:

India Cookbook by Pushpesh Pantrainbow pages

photo page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

India Cookbook by Pushpesh Pant – I just love the rainbow-colored pages of this one!

This giant book even comes in a “rice” bag!

book bag

cookbook bag!

ingredients for tamba di bhaji

ingredients for tamba di bhaji ~ simple and delicious

It’s garden time again, and the end of June/early July has been H-O-T hot! Thank goodness for that, because everything got a late start due to a lingering winter. We were nearly a month behind starting. However, as mom reminds me, my papa used to say the best garden he ever had was planted on the 4th of July! We were a bit ahead of that.

I have no complaints as there’s plenty of goodness in the gardens already. The early harvest includes mountains of swiss chard in every color. I thought their deep green leaves and rainbow stems would be a good substitute for red amaranthus leaves called for in the recipe I chose for the challenge. Dear G moved the peppers down to the back garden to change things up this year, and they are growing like mad.ย What a delight it is to go traipsing barefooted through the back yard, into the pepper plantation and pick out a fresh green chile for supper.

peppers and okra

part of the pepper plantation and okra in the fore

tender stems of rainbow chard

tender stems of rainbow chard

Tamba di Bhaji (with Rainbow Swiss Chard) adapted from:
INDIA Cookbook by Pushpesh Pant

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1 tsp grapeseed oil
1 onion, sliced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1-2 green chiles (I slit mine)
1 large bunch swiss chard – washed well, tender stems chopped and leaves shredded
1-2 TB grated coconut (mine is frozen)
fresh curry leaves or curry leaves powder
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

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Cook the chopped tender stems in a small amount of salted water, about 10 minutes. Hold aside.

In your stir-fry pan, heat the oil over medium heat and add onion. Cook until nearly translucent, then add garlic and green chile — also curry leaves if using fresh. Cook a further 10 minutes and add the shredded chard leaves.

Stir well. Cover and cook 10-15 minutes, or until chard is wilted well. Sprinkle some water to be sure nothing burns. Stir in the tender stems, add curry leaves powder if using, coconut, and salt to taste. Mix well, reduce heat to low, and cook a further 5-10 minutes. Serve hot with rice for a quick supper. Also – don’t forget the black pepper at the end as it really makes the dish.

We had ours with Thai sticky rice – G’s new favorite.

supper!

tamba di bhaji with rainbow chard

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Thanks Srivalli for bringing back the Cooking From Cookbook Challenge Group just in time for summertime veggies! I am already inspired for next week ๐Ÿ™‚

early girl tomatoes

early girl tomatoes bleaching out

 

sweet peas

sweet peas in summer? only in the north woods ๐Ÿ˜‰

part of the back garden - tomatoes and eggplant

part of the back garden ~ brinjal and tomatoes with marigolds galore

korean squash climbing the trellis

korean squash is already climbing the trellis

summer squash and okra

potatoes in boxes to the rear; back end of the pepper plantation; summer squash and baby lebanese zucchini plants; okra and garlic chives to the left

gongura seedlings

gongura seedlings

monarch on milkweed

all of dear g’s hard work planting and maintaining milkweed finally pays off with a beautiful monarch butterfly

Happy Sunday!

 

 

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Red Letter Birding Days

It’s been a slow start to spring and the garden isn’t even begun, but the yard is full of excitement nonetheless with a red-headed woodpecker visiting!

red headed woodpecker

red-headed woodpecker at the bottom of a little spruce tree in the front yard…

red headed woodpecker

and peeking around the front – here’s looking at you, kid!

snagging some corn

off to the trees with some corn to hide away…

red headed woodpecker

probably stashing that corn…

red headed woodpecker

hope he hangs around long enough for mom to see later this month!

Happy bird-watching!!

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And They’re Off!

Seedlings are popping up left and right…

seedlings

peas towering over the tomatoes and okra

onion seedlings

DG’s onion babies

tiny ground cherries

teeeny tiny Aunt Molly’s ground cherry seedlings

And while the plants are snug under the grow-lights, the birds are frolicking in the late spring snow.

ruffed grouse

secretive ruffed grouse – a treat to catch it around the feeders

redpolls, siskins and goldies

a couple of redpolls came to hang out with the siskins and goldies

nuthatch and chickadee

white-breasted nuthatch and a chickadee

male pileated woodpecker

male pileated woodpecker is stunning in the sun

sharp shinned hawk

and a wily sharp shinned hawk taking it all in ~ but he didn’t get lunch!

Waiting for the snow to melt to get those peas in the ground — happy Friday!

 

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Popsicle Sticks Growing

starting seeds in March

popsicle sticks growing!

Last year we planted seeds indoors at the end of March, and I was a bit disappointed with the size of some seedlings. This year we decided to plant at the beginning of March instead.

Dear G was in charge of the onion seeds: Utah Sweet Yellow and Walla Walla.

I started tomatoes: Orange Slice, Egg Yolk, Prudens Purple, Farmstead, Sweet Ozark Orange, Boronia, Isis Candy, Chocolate Cherry, Japanese Black Trifele, Cherokee Purple Heart, Brandywine Pink, and Black Krim;

eggplants: Orient Express, Orient Charm, and Thai Long Green;

okra: Chanchal and Clemson Spineless;

Alaska shelling peas, Hot Bhaji peppers, andย Aunt Molly’s Ground Cherry.

Here they are all cozy by the hearth ๐Ÿ™‚

starting seeds indoors

waiting to germinate so they can go under the grow lights!

Happy indoor planting!

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Northern Goshawk

Check out what dear G caught on camera — high up in a tree after trying to catch its supper around the feeders! A Northern Goshawk — a large accipiter and a first for our yard. Wish I had been home but glad he managed to catch a photo — even if it is a bit far up.

goshawk in the yard!

majestic northern goshawk, high in a tree above the feeders

In other exciting news, it’s time to start sorting garden seeds. Indoor planting begins this weekend!

garden seeds galore!

treasure chest ๐Ÿ™‚

Happy Thursday!

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Christmas Cactus!

“Good things come to those who wait” — or, “patience is a virtue” — only not a virtue of mine I’m afraid! When I moved to Michigan (four years ago!??) I worked part-time at a grocery store deli. The florist there gifted me with a tiny, straggly Christmas cactus.

My mom always had a huge Christmas cactus — it lived in a giant china jug in the basement of every home I can remember from childhood on — and it was always covered in glorious pink flowers from late every autumn on into the New Year.

I can grow some veggies, but I’ve never had much luck with houseplants. Dear G, however, took the cactus into his charge, and after four years of careful attention, it’s blossoming!

Now, to find the perfect china jug for it ๐Ÿ™‚

christmas cactus blossoming

christmas cactus blossoming!

Happy Sunday!

 

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Late October at Lake Superior

the path to lake superior

view of lake superior from the overlook near deer park ~ michigan’s upper peninsula

Finally we got a chance to head ‘up north’ to the Upper Peninsula — for a very quick and very long overdue couple of days hunting for agates on Lake Superior. The foliage has been late to turn this year — rather than the drab far-past-peak colors we expected, there were surprising bits of color here and there. Sadly my camera couldn’t do it justice…

road to lake superior

color a bit lacking on this road to the lake…

splash of color in the up

this road had seen some heavy logging ~ still a splash of color to be seen

fall color in the up

another splash of color outside our little cabin ~ nestled among the tall pines where myriad nuthatches (red- and white-breasted variety) and chickadees played morning and night…

It was only 36 hours by the clock, but a welcomed eternity for the soul ๐Ÿ™‚

calm lake superior

unusual to see the big lake so calm in autumn

lake superior agates

a few of the treasures we brought back… lake superior agates and other interesting stones…

path to the lake

the path my feet will be dreaming of until spring … leading to a little piece of heaven ‘up north’

Happy Monday!

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