Wednesday, June 30, 2010

all ducks, all the time

tomorrow's post
won't be about ducks.
i promise.

but, today's post is ALL ducks.

marian & patito

patito's first swim.

a little less pecking, a little more socializing

swimming together

answers to a few questions that have come up:

"what are you calling the ducklings?"
i have always called the eggs & ducklings ducka.
(as in, "oh, DUCK-ah!")
weird, yes, but it seems right.
then there's pip, pippa, pippopotamus.
we've been calling patito by his/her full name.
maybe it's because it sounds like "petite~oh"
which suits tiny patito.
tito sounds tougher
& may serve him well in adolescence.

"what are you feeding the ducklings?"
we are feeding them purina "flock raiser"
(it looks like grape-nuts)
but they have also eaten lots of mosquitoes
in our backyard - they can catch them mid-air.

"what are you going to DO with these two ducks?"
well, we don't really have an exit strategy
for this egg rescue/duck hatching project.
some folks have suggested
turning them loose at our nearby ponds.
(note: the mallards are there year-round.)
others have balked,
saying that human-raised ducks won't have the
duck skill-set necessary to be wild ducks.
my sweet friend jessica,
who has experience with egg rescue/duck hatching,
says that once their ducklings moved outside,
they kept them in an enclosure
without a roof. 
they could fly away when they chose,
and return to a safe home-base
whenever they needed.
this sounds like the best option to me,
but i would love your thoughts & ideas.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

duck dynamics

i watch lots of duck drama
unfold in and around our ponds.
ducks are complex creatures.
with ducks, the simple stuff ain't so simple.

you might imagine that
two sweet mama ducks
with two sets of fuzzy ducklings
could get along peaceably.

well, you would be wrong.

each mama duck wants her own ducklings
to have exclusive rights to our toast crusts.
they don't share.

i am not a duck expert,
but it seems to me that with ducks
it's survival of the fittest and meanest.

knowing this, it comes as no surprise that
on the few times i have tried to introduce them,
pip would like to peck the stuffing out of patito.

they hatched less than one week apart,
but in that week, pip has quadrupled in size.

pip is still a baby,
but compared to patito,
he is a bigger, stronger, smarter (meaner) baby.

therefore, they are bunking separately.
each snuggled up to their own teddy bear.

but tonight, marian & i took them outside
and tried something new...

we walked around the backyard
(in somewhat of a thunderstorm)
with them following us in
perfect duck formation.

no pecking,
no heckling,
no unnecessary roughness.

just one duck following the other.

this little thing gives me hope.

Monday, June 28, 2010

earthly delights - csa bounty week 6

our scrumptious share this week:
kohlrabi (delicious!)
emerald oak leaf lettuce
rainbow chard
giant red mustard greens
lacinato "dino" kale
snow peas
sugar snap peas
daikon radish seed pods
baby beets & beet greens
garlic scapes

here's a link to our
super awesome farm,
earthly delights

Sunday, June 27, 2010

welcome, tito!

we have a brand new baby duck...
♥ tito ♥
(short for patito, or "little duck" en espa├▒ol)
he or she hatched this afternoon
and we all got to watch.

last night, the egg looked like this:

by this afternoon, it was "zipped"
(that's when the duckling makes a line of cracks
in a circle around the top of the egg)


i got the brooding box all ready
and marian moved him

look how tiny!

all tucked in...

Saturday, June 26, 2010

garage sale find

i found this at a garage sale today.
it is a dala horse from sweden.
i have wanted one (or a dozen) for a long time.
it cost me one dollar.
that's right, a dala for a dolla.

Friday, June 25, 2010

we ♥ pip

Thursday, June 24, 2010

the psychedelic furs

last friday,
i was lucky enough to get to see
the psychedelic furs
in concert.
they played the egyptian theatre
in downtown boise
(one of the coolest venues on the planet).

in case you have any doubts,
this british band from the 80's
completely rocks.

richard butler, the lead singer,
was absolutely adorable.
his joy was infectious.
he is clearly someone who is living his dream.

i made my way down to the edge of the stage,
and during one of the last songs,
i got to shake his hand.
what a pleasure.
see me right there?

p.s. i have added some of their songs to my playlist. 
i think heaven was my favorite of the night.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

picture story

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

above the din of a friendly-yet-escalating
sibling wrestling match,
my mom used to say,
"someONE's going to get HURT!"
she could sense
that things were about to become
less friendly.

with ned, that sense is my constant companion.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

earthly delights: csa bounty week 5

~ our share this week ~
green oak leaf lettuce
red giant mustard greens
collard greens
red russian kale
garlic scapes
sugar snap peas
snow peas
chinese cabbage

you can check out our ├╝bercool csa farm,
earthly delights
a note about the
delicious mustard greens:
they are so spicy!!
they taste just like wasabe.
i like to spread a little goat cheese on them,
roll them up & dip in our homemade vinaigrette.
☼ yum ☼

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

duckling update
it's day 2
pip is doing great
he is so stinkin' cute
can you even stand it?

Monday, June 21, 2010

bursting with pride!

on friday night,
i could hear faint peeping ♫
from inside the egg.

on saturday night,
the egg "pipped" (first tiny hole)
and peeped a little louder.

on sunday night,
the cracks were growing.
we even saw a tiny duck bill poke out.
the egg shook & almost rolled.
the peeping was impossible to ignore.

this morning (monday),
here is what i saw in the incubator:

i moved our tiny duckling to the brooding box
(with a heat lamp, thermometer, straw,
food, water, & a teddy bear)

just like a baby,
the duckling cries (peeps) when left alone.
he wants to be talked to & wants to be held.
i have to tuck him in with the teddy bear
so he feels secure & falls asleep.

his (or her) name is pip.
we love him (or her) so much.

p.s. we still have another egg in the incubator.
it is about 10 days younger.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

dear old dad

this one's for you, dad.

happy father's day.

i love you.

♥ catie

Saturday, June 19, 2010

homemade hummus with roasted chick peas

 (chick peas: continued...)
is one our favorite foods,
and homemade hummus is the very best.
a quick lunch or snack...
a great sandwich spread...
the substance we need on "snack dinner" nights...

starting with dried chick peas requires a little forethought,
but it is well worth it.
here's what i do...

at night:
put 4 cups of dried chick peas in a pot with a lid.
fill the pot with water & soak them overnight.

in the morning:
drain & rinse the soaked chick peas.
☼{here's where i remove some of them to sprout}☼
☼{...see yesterday's post...}☼
return the soaked chick peas to the pot,
fill it with fresh cold water & bring it to a boil.
skim off the foam (yuck),
turn down the heat & simmer for a few hours
until the chick peas are tender.
add salt only after they are cooked, but still hot.
(adding salt too early can make them tough, i've heard)

now, i have a HUGE pot of tender, cooked chick peas,
just the same as (but WAY better than) canned.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

make the switch
from canned chick peas:
a normal can of cooked chick peas holds about 1 3/4 cups.
i freeze the cooked chick peas (undrained) in 2 cup containers.
(well, more is more, right?)
when i'm ready to use them, i take them out of the freezer
and rinse with cold water to thaw
(you could warm them on the stove or microwave them).
once your freezer is stocked, they are as easy as canned.

after thawing, i season with olive oil, salt & pepper
and toss on top of almost every green salad.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

a scrumptious blend of:
cooked chick peas
tahini (sesame seed butter)
lemon juice
olive oil
salt & pepper

thank goodness that this spread
is almost as common now as onion dip was in the 70's.
making your own is so much more delicious
than even the best hummus you can buy in any store.

do you want a recipe?
(tell me if you would like a real recipe... i will find one.)
i just start adding & tasting.

for this batch i used:
6 cups of cooked chick peas
(plus a little reserved cooking liquid)
about 3/4 cup of tahini
juice of 3 lemons
4 HUGE garlic cloves (equiv. to 8 or 10)
a drizzle or 2 of olive oil
salt & pepper to taste

i only have a small food processor
so i used my stick blender.
(not recommended: had to put it outside cool off)
use your cuisinart or equivalent
to blend all ingredients until smooth.

serve with toasted pita bread
sliced cucumbers
chopped tomatoes
carrot sticks
roasted chick peas (recipe below)
...garnish with a little fresh parsley, olive oil, & paprika...
(as my friend virginia says, GOR-jus!)

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

roasted chick peas
preheat oven to 425°
drain & rinse & pat dry cooked chick peas.
(i use 2 cups.)
spread the chick peas on a pan (something with sides).
drizzle with olive oil.
season with salt & pepper.
(i also add paprika, garlic powder, cumin, & cayenne - BAM!)
roast for about 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes,
until golden & toasty & crunchy.

note: check them every few minutes at the end.
there's a fine line between crunchy and scorched.

these are great to eat as-is,
or sprinkled on top of your hummus.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

here's a peek at the 3 people i love most:
emily, marian, & ned (with maisy)

Friday, June 18, 2010

chick pea sprouts

do you ever sprout chick peas?
(aka garbanzo beans)

they are
~ so easy ~
~ so cheap ~
~ so yummy ~
~ so nutritious ~

i like to buy dried organic chick peas in bulk.
{better for you, better for the planet}
at the boise co-op they are $1.59/lb
but winco sells them for 77¢/lb (better for your wallet).

when you get them home, you will need to
soak them overnight
as if you were going to cook them.
i usually soak 4 cups of dried chick peas
then take some out to sprout
and cook the rest.

instant gratification
believe it or not,
after one overnight soak (at least 8 hours)
they are technically "sprouts"
and can be eaten immediately.

after soaking,
drain & rinse the chick peas.
at this point, i start munching on them.
here's what recommend:
keep the sprouts in a colander
on your kitchen counter, near the sink.
(keep them out of the direct sun.)

set the colander over a bowl so they can drain.
partially cover to allow airflow but prevent drying out. 

sprouts should be rinsed a few times every day
(about once every 8 hours)
and drained well after each rinse.

each day, they will continue to sprout
and become even more nutritious.

after about four days, i put them in them in the fridge.
this stops the sprouting & keeps them fresh.

this photo shows chick peas that are
1. dried
2. soaked overnight
3. sprouted for four days

these sprouts can be eaten as a snack,
tossed on top of a salad,
or as a side dish with a little oil & vinegar.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

i have a big pot of chick peas simmering on the stove.
check tomorrow's post to see what i'm making...

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...