Make a Midsummer Sandwich

  1. Gather ingredients


Wild day lilies, CSA cucumbers, locally-produced cheese, homemade bread

2. Assemble sandwich


3. Enjoy!


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A Floral Treat

Midsummer is bright with day lilies blooming along roadsides and in gardens.


So pretty to look at and so delicious to eat!

Just about all parts of the day lily are edible, but I’m partial to the delicately flavored buds.


I steam them for about 5 minutes and eat them with butter and salt.


Eating day lily buds has been described as similar to eating green beans or asparagus. Texture-wise, I’m in the asparagus camp, but flavor-wise they are nothing like asparagus, having a delicate flavor all their own. Try them, but be sure to leave some behind so you can enjoy the bright flowers when they bloom.



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Bok Choy – A Vegetable I Have to Learn to Love

Bok Choy has little to recommend it as far as I can see. Its stems are watery, its leaves wimpy, and it cooks down to an almost flavorless almost nothing.

And yet it keeps appearing in my CSA basket.


During CSA season, I plan meals around the contents of the weekly basket. I have no problem whipping up a dinner with asparagus as the main event, or radishes, or even a mixed greens salad. But bok choy just doesn’t seem to have the personality to hold its own as the main feature of a meal.

But it’s in the basket, so I have to use it. So here are some ways I’ve some up with.

  • Salads – The chopped raw stems add a crispy texture to a rice salad or tossed green salad, and the leaves can be added to salad greens
  • Stir fry – Maybe this is how this vegetable is most commonly used. I used it in a radish sauté last week. It added some bulk to the dish, but not much else.
  • Snacks – If you’re a little thirsty or just want to feel something crispy in your mouth, you can munch on some raw bok choy.
  • Beans – Add some to the pot when you’re cooking beans. I admit I haven’t tried this yet, but it’s on this week’s agenda.

If anyone else who’s had a happier experience with this vegetable has some other suggestions, please share.



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Ingredients for a Spring Salad


  • freshly-picked wild violet leaves
  • freshly-picked wild mustard flowers and buds
  • carrots (last fall’s harvest) and spinach from local farms
  • home-sprouted sprouts
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Nettle Quiche

Stinging nettles need no dressing up. A plate of them steamed and eaten with just a dollop of butter and a dash of salt is an exquisite dish indeed. But sometimes I like to get fancy. We brought home a bucket load of stinging nettles yesterday, so I decided to try my hand at making a nettle quiche.


I followed my basic quiche recipe. I started with a loosely-packed colander full of nettles, which I steamed for five minutes. It cooked down to a handful, just the right amount for a quiche. Meanwhile, I sautéed a minced garlic clove and a chopped medium onion. I added a dash of salt and 1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg to the eggs and milk, then put everything together in the piecrust with a handful of cheese.

While the quiche was baking, we sipped on nettle tea — the water that the nettles had been steamed in. Really, that is my favorite part of cooking with nettles. The tea/cooking water is so packed with deliciousness.


The quiche was very delicious, too. I will definitely make it again. And I can! We picked so many nettles yesterday that we had plenty left over to freeze for future quiches.


Local analysis:

Local — nettles, eggs, milk, cheese, butter (in the crust)

Non-local — salt, nutmeg, olive oil, flour (in the crust)

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My Salad Garden

This is my salad garden.

Mother Nature planted it for me right behind my house. All I have to do is step out my backdoor and harvest.




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Something You Don’t Need to Try

After an initial experiment baking with dandelion flowers – I made dandelion biscuits – I decided to drop the idea of dandelion baked goods because the flowers didn’t seem to add anything to the final product – no taste, no texture. But this week the dandelions are blooming again, looking so bright and inviting and delicious that I thought, why not give baking one more try?

I decided on cookies this time. It’s easy to find recipes for dandelion cookies online, but they usually call for just 1/2 cup of dandelions. I wanted to make my cookies as dandelion-y as possible, so I ended adapting a carrot cookie recipe that called for a full cup of carrots. I just used dandelions instead.


I ate a few flowers straight. They were sweet but had no particular flavor.

The cookies came out OK, tasting of vanilla and brown sugar, but with no hint of dandelion at all.


If you want to try this, you’ll have no trouble finding a dandelion cookie or carrot cookie recipe online. But I think I’ll stick to enjoying dandelions in my salad.


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