Pick-Your-Own Berries in Southwest Virginia

The strawberries ripen sometime in May, then come the blueberries and blackberries and raspberries. In the best years, blueberry picking can continue through September. All around the Roanoke Valley are farms and orchards with fresh, often pesticide-free produce waiting for us to come fetch it. Here’s a place to start if you’re hoping to pickContinue reading “Pick-Your-Own Berries in Southwest Virginia”

Asparagus and Greens Soup

As I write this in late spring/early summer, we have spring onions growing tall in one corner of the garden, our second planting of spinach is thriving, and our stand of kale is pretty as a picture. The asparagus is long-gone, but I can find some at my farmers market. I have a few jarsContinue reading “Asparagus and Greens Soup”

Savory Spring Dutch Baby

I was reminded recently of a certain airy, eggy deliciousness called a Dutch baby or German pancake. When I realized it could be the start of a dinner that featured eggs and leafy greens, I knew this was the meal for this height-of-spring moment. I’ve made it several times lately — with arugula, kale, spinachContinue reading “Savory Spring Dutch Baby”

Harvest Vegetable Soup

In times of struggle, anxiety, illness, there is no better balm than soup. It is literally a healing food. It’s also a comfort. It’s unfussy. It can be made quickly, easily, cheaply. This soup, in particular, lends itself to adaptation. Toss in a little of this. Add a little of that. Which makes it well-suitedContinue reading “Harvest Vegetable Soup”

Basic Bone Broth

Bone broth became a health craze several years ago. But it’s one of those foods that has been around for eons. It was once simply the way soups and sauces were begun — with a nutrient-dense liquid made at home from what was left of another meal. Now it’s touted as a cure-all to beContinue reading “Basic Bone Broth”

Raspberry Cream Cheese Muffins

These were a hands-down hit for my house last spring and early summer as we had raspberries ripening on our backyard bushes faster than we could eat them. But frozen berries work, as well. The beauty of this recipe is that the fruit provides much of the sweetness, so no need for a lot ofContinue reading “Raspberry Cream Cheese Muffins”

Super Simple Roasted Vegetables

Eating local means embracing root vegetables, especially in the winter — and on into spring. That’s hard for some folks, I know. To me, roasting the roots brings out their best flavor — and makes for a pretty simple meal. My go-to roasted veggie recipe includes winter greens and nice dash of cayenne and turmeric.Continue reading “Super Simple Roasted Vegetables”

Springtime Fried Rice

We love fried rice at our house — served with some rubbed pork or sautéed tofu or even as the star attraction of our dinner, with a little Ginger Orange Sesame Slaw on the side. And Spring is the perfect season for it, what with the hens laying regularly again, the herbs growing like weedsContinue reading “Springtime Fried Rice”

Hello, Spring!

After the snowiest March I can recall, I’m kind of pinching myself. It’s April, right? Many years the forsythia and daffodils and cherry blossoms have disappeared already. But this season, the asparagus, the chives, the kale and spinach in my garden are just getting going. I know I’m not alone when I say I couldn’tContinue reading “Hello, Spring!”

Pizza Dough Primer

  From-scratch pizza is pretty much a weekly occurrence in our house. It’s beloved by everyone, can be partly made ahead and takes less than 30 minutes from rolling out the dough to sitting down to dinner — all plusses in our busy day-to-day. It’s also a basic framework to eat whatever’s in season. RightContinue reading “Pizza Dough Primer”