Our cocoon turned into a…

Butterfly.  A friend gave us two Monarch cocoons.  He said they would get dark, then clear shortly before opening.  We noticed them turn dark last night and thought for sure the butterfly would hatch while we were sleeping but it waited until today!

I know this has nothing to do with food, but it is soo cool that I wanted to share my pictures of it.

This is how it looked when we got it.

This is how it looked as it was darkening last night.

These were pictures this morning.  You can tell the green has almost completely disappeared.

And after it hatched!  Do butterflies hatch?  Or is there some other term?

We let the wings dry for an hour or so and took it outside.

Goodbye, beautiful butterfly!


I will call this “Seasonal stew”

So we’ve been using food from the Fresh Fork Market here and there.  But last night, we had a BIG CSA dinner.  It consisted of  all CSA products.    I was so proud!  Of course, we still have produce left in the fridge so I think we will have to have more dinners like this.

First, I heated some oil and sauteed 2 diced garlic scapes that we had left over.  Then,  I took 1 1/2 cups of stock we had made from when we roasted our chicken and poured it into the pan.  Then, I cut the chicken bratwurst and cooked it in the stock.  After the chicken was done cooking, I added chopped spinach, yellow squash, and a chopped tomato.

The vegetables really cooked down and added more flavor.  So easy, nutritious, and versatile.  You could do this with any vegetables or meat you have on hand.  Although, the tomato was my favorite with this because I think it made it a bit more saucy.

We put this “seasonal stew” over some of the polenta I had frozen.

Waffles galore!

Because I have never had cornmeal sitting in my pantry before, if I see it in a recipe, it screams make me!  So I have this website in my facebook newsfeed and she posted a recipe for Whole wheat cornmeal waffles.  So I listened to my inner voice and made them this morning.  I haven’t had a ton of luck with the cornmeal in recipes, but this was a hit.  One of the kiddos ate 1 1/2 waffles!  But the real test will come once my anti-whole wheat husband tries them.  I thought they had a great flavor and actually thought the cornmeal was successful at adding a little extra “Wow!” to the waffles.

And this recipe makes a bunch!  These are our extras that went into the freezer.


  • 3 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 cups of milk
  • 1/2 cup butter (melted)
  • 1/4 cup oil


  1. Mix together milk, eggs, butter and oil.
  2. Add brown sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  3. Mix in cornmeal.
  4. Slowly mix in flour. If you are using white flour you will need to add a little extra or reduce the amount of milk in the recipe.
  5. Cook on a hot waffle iron.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 5 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 12

These waffles are great reheated the next day or stored in the freezer. Just reheat in the toaster.

Fresh Fork week #4

Week 4 consisted of a bunch of stuff that most people are very familiar with and lots of repeats again.

1 package chicken bratwursts (1.25 lb)

1 bunch garlic scapes

Approx 1.5 lb tomatoes

1 quart strawberries

1 bunch green onions

1 bunch spinach

1 head leaf lettuce

1 huge zucchini, 1 small zucchini, and 2 yellow squash

brie cheese

Not sure what we are going to do with this food yet.  I am thinking of a chicken stew, or the market suggested ratatouille.  And some zucchini bread for sure.  Any ideas, let me know!

My strawberry plan

Kids are weird.  At least mine are when it comes to food.  One word to describe them?  Super picky..ok two words.  One thing they both like is fruit.  Not all kinds but quite a few varieties will be eaten.  However, you never know what the fruit of the week is.  For example, they were both crazy about strawberries until strawberry season began in Ohio and they moved on to blueberries.  I bet you any money that at the beginning of July when it is blueberry season, they will beg for apples.  It makes me sad because fresh strawberries are just so delicious.  And I remember this happening last year too.

We got another quart of strawberries last night from Fresh Fork Market.  Therefore, I decided to make these strawberry muffins, call them cupcakes, and see if they will eat them this way.

Strawberry Chocolate Chip Muffins

  •           1/2 teaspoon salt
  •           2 teaspoons baking powder
  •           1/2 cup white sugar
  •           3 /4 cups all-purpose flour
  •           1 cup whole wheat flour
  •           1 cup chopped strawberries
  •           1/4 cup canola oil
  •           3/4 cup milk
  •           1/2 tsp vanilla
  •           1 egg
  •            3/4 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) oil an 12 cup muffin tin, or use paper liners.     In a large bowl, mix flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. Toss in chopped strawberries and stir to coat with flour.   In a small bowl, combine oil, milk, and egg. Beat lightly. Pour milk mixture into dry ingredients bowl and fold together.

Fill muffin cups. Bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for 23-25 minutes, or until the tops bounce back from the touch. Cool 10 minutes and remove from pans.

Success!  These are so very yummy!

What do you do with a 2 lb. bag of cornmeal?

Well, I haven’t figured that out yet, but I have made a slight dent in it by making cornbread and the latest polenta.  I found this basic cheese polenta recipe on allrecipes.com and decided to try it out.

This was really very easy and very tasty.  Luckily, I managed to find a time when there weren’t a lot of interruptions from the rest of the family because there is quite a bit of stirring involved.  Another warning is that it recommends chilling for 4 hours before eating.

So, after allowing MY polenta to chill for a couple hours, I decided to fry it.  I used my new Misto sprayer to spray the pan.  This is my new favorite kitchen gadget.   This photo was after flipping the polenta.

Then we cooked some chicken breasts, a large handful of spinach, 2 tomatoes, 1 cup of milk, 2 Tbl. of flour, and 1 Tbl. of italian spices in the pressure cooker (oregano, thyme, garlic, and basil).  We actually used more milk and less flour, and it was too watery, so the above are my untested suggestions.  Cooked them for about 12 minutes and voila!, dinner was ready.

The beauty of a pressure cooker is that it cooks things super fast.  So, if you don’t have a pressure cooker, then I suggest cooking said items for about 30 minutes in a covered pot.

Really, the polenta made the meal with it’s slightly salty flavor.

S’more brownies

This has nothing to do with nutrition or local food, but I have to include some desserts for sweet fun!

Father’s day dessert was my job and knowing how much my father and husband like chocolate, I had to come up with a chocolatey dessert.  Everyone loves a s’more and a brownie, so why not combine them.  I found several recipes like this online and just used the ideas from all of those to create this.

I found lots of recipes like this online and used them to create these.

1 box of brownie mix

2 cups marshmallows

2  chocolate bars broken into pieces (You could definitely use more to make them more rich.)

7 graham crackers broken into pieces

I used Ghirardelli brownie mix (as I think they are the best).  Make brownies as directed on box and put into 9 x 13 inch pan.  Bake for about 5 minutes less than directed on box.  In this case, I baked them for 32 minutes (directions didnt include bake time for 9 x 13 pan).  Put smore ingredients on top and bake for 5 more minutes.  Cool and Enjoy!