I love garden fresh tomatoes! We have not had much luck with growing them; one year we even tried some pots up on the roof.
raised garden bedThough we have a large backyard, we have a serious allelopathy problem: black walnut trees produce juglone which is poison to tomatoes and many other plants. We had a small raised bed made from old shipping pallets, but it had begun to rot and the soil in it was too sandy for tomatoes. Last summer, Mr. Tess built a raised garden bed from some discarded utility tiny green tomatoespoles.

This is the first year I have hope of great tomatoes. There are half a dozen different plants, though I think we lost the tags with the variety names. One is a cherry tomato, some are early, some are late producers. Early this spring I planted some English peas, but something ate the plants before they bloomed. Still, I have hopes for some good tomatoes…


chardchard leafWe also put in some chard,
which immediately attracted
the attention of our woodchuck friend.
The short chicken wire fence
seems to have
outsmarted him
so far.


green shiso

Red and Green ShisoLast summer, I had some shiso plants in a pot on the patio. These plants volunteered this spring. The red shiso is very pretty but its flavor is stronger than the green varieties. I bought some shiso seeds, but forgot about them.

They are just beginning to sprout.

chard from the garden

This was dinner.
The spicy sesame sauce left from a few days ago was mixed with fresh noodles. The left-over cucumber and carrot agar-agar was just ok. The re-heated chicken was dried out; it just does not make a good make ahead food.
The chard was good, fresh from the garden.

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Crispy Harusame Chicken Cold Shabu Shabu with Creamy Sesame Dressing

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