Saturday, May 29, 2010

A Couple Things

First, a word on Sun Tea.

Can you believe I happen to have a picture of brewing sun tea in my photos? It's 2 years old. Cory keeps telling me to weed through all of my photos, but these sorts of occasions serve as an important reminder that we just never know when a humble, unattractive photo from the past may be called upon to serve the greater good of the blogosphere and general mankind.

Sun Tea is the easiest thing Evah. People probably have different ways of doing it, but here's what I do:

Buy one of these kitschy jugs at your favorite grocery store.
Fill the jug with hot water (leaving a little room at the top).
Stir in a scant 2/3 cup of sugar.
Add 6-8 tea bags of your choosing. (Last time, I used 4 regular old green tea bags, along with 2 flavored green tea bags.)
Set the jut out in the sun and go weed your garden, kiss your babies and water your roses.
Within a couple of hours, you will have a jug of tea.
Keep it in the jug, in the fridge and watch how quickly it vanishes.

Next, a meal, to go along with the tea:

I found this recipe back in 2000 in Country Living (or was it Country Home?) magazine. It is still in one of my recipe binders and I make it at least a couple of times a year. It's easy, fresh, relatively healthy and we all love it.

First, seed and chop 6-8 Roma tomatoes. I usually do 8, because I'm all different kinds of tomatoey.

Next, cut a bunch of asparagus into 1 to 2-inch pieces. I do not have a picture of this step, or any step hereafter. Who do you think I am? Pioneer Woman?

Close your eyes and envision yourself chopping 3 cloves of garlic.

Now, heat some olive oil in your saute pan then toss in the garlic. Once that's nice and smell-goody and golden, toss in the tomatoes and the asparagus. Toss in some salt. Cook until the tomatoes start to break down. Maybe 10 minutes? Maybe 8? I don't know, I'm in Ohio and the recipe is not in front of me.

This is all from memory, baby. And I can tell you from experience - it's a scary place to be.

Once your veggies are softened up (but not too soft!) pour in one cup of white wine (I use white cooking wine, because I know no better...) Bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat and add 2 T of butta. Stir until melted. (I have taken the liberty of doubling the wine/butter "sauce". I'm a saucy gal! And so are you.) Throw a nice handful of chopped, fresh basil in and you're ready to eat.

Except for the fact that I forgot to tell you to boil some angel hair or thin spaghetti. So go do that and don't you dare curse me, because God is always watching.

Shovel some of the veggie sauce over your pasta and thank your lucky stars that fate has lead you to FPFG, the keeper of all good tomato-based recipes.

Isn't it weird to think that I was barely married and a spring chicken of just 23 years old when I had the good sense to tear this one out? I probably didn't even have wrinkles or an age spot and still, so wise!

What can I say? A stomach knows what it wants.

Finally, here's a cropped-in view of what allaya'll have taken to calling "the flower cart". An Amish man loads up two trailers with the most gorgeous hanging baskets and such and hauls them about, every day. He does not go door-to-door. He does not stop to see if I'd like anything...although holy cow, that would be phenomenal! I honestly don't know where he takes them, but I do know that he goes by our house later in the day, around 3 or 4, and his wagons are empty. The last time I saw him, he also had 4 smallish-to-small children on the wagon. Sometimes, when it's raining, he covers himself up with this blue tarp.

It's all quite fascinating. But mostly, it's beautiful. It's the picture of serenity, to me.


  1. The recipe sounds and looks so yummy! I will be trying it out soon! Now how to get the dh to eat tomatos? Hmmm. Shared your post about the Jumpy kitty adventure with the dh. Love your family adventures!

  2. you should chase him down. Just for fun.

    Okay so, I'm afraid. Once, I tried to make a vodka cream sauce...I don't think I boiled the vodka long enough. Whoo eee! Of course, I was trying it out on a night when we were having company...and of course, I didn't want to waste any so I took leftovers to work. I made the break room smell like Bon Jovi's bus. Luckily it didn't affect me....:)

    Now I'm hungry.

  3. by the way, this post says May 26th so it's not showing up right on my blog list, which I use sometimes instead of my reader because those are the blogs that I Heart the most...and so, it's confusing.
    Here I am, complaining about the technical aspects of your blog again. You're welcome.

  4. yum
    i was starving before i read this post
    now i'm starVINGGGG
    sun tea, delish!

  5. Okay, I'm not really a tomato kind of girl, or at least I wasn't in the past but I'm starting to come around. It's fair to assume that my girls came by their pickiness honestly. Although, I must tell you that Maddie actually ordered a ham and asparagus sandwich the other day. Who is this girl? But I digress...I am totally going to make this dish and I bet I will surprise myself. Lately I'm all about trying something new. It almost seems like it's become a way of life!

  6. Yum. Recipe looks great. Thanks also for the reminders:

    1. To continue to hoard old digital photos in spite of spousal mocking.

    2. To make some iced tea. I use decaf ginger peach tea bags from The Republic of Tea and the result is vaguely reminiscent of Snapple. :)

  7. LOL loved reading the recipe. It sounds delish!
    I take the most random photos and my family are constantly poking fun that them ~ I say, you never know when I might be in need of a photo of an ANT. lol
    Have a wonderful iced tea sipping weekend!

  8. I love that snapshot of the Amish wagon with the flowers. At first I thought it might be a funeral wagon, but then I read your text and it made sense. Picture of serenity indeed.

  9. Mmmmmm. ;) That sounds good.
    And I love the ways you listed to pass time for the sun tea!

  10. Nothing says summer like sun tea!!!

    Thanks for a yummy, summery recipe too!!!

    Have a wonderful weekend ...

  11. That sounds yummy! I'm going to try that!

  12. your posts are so fun. and i'm going to cook this asap. even tho you didn't have pictures for every step :P

  13. I have been needing to change up my cooking a bit, so thank you because this looks good!
    I want that flower cart to drive by my house! That beats the ice cream man in my books.

  14. I've been meaning to make some sun tea! Thanks for the reminder. I love your country life. Looking at that horse drawn "flower cart" is just precious. I would love seeing stuff like that:) Thanks for sharing:) Have a great weekend Shannan.

  15. I have that same exact Sun Tea jar here in Utah!!
    Great minds think alike, *wink *wink

  16. i have you in my thoughts.............
    enjoy your weekend holiday! take care & enjoy that sun tea!

  17. sun tea...i could go for some of that right now. yummy!

  18. I am off to make some sun tea. I forgot that I love it! I want the flower cart to pass by here. We live near the Amish but not close enough for them to pass by. I'd have to hitch hike just once with him!

  19. Thankyou...thankyou...thankyou....sun tea is coming to our house.....xx

  20. I was without a computer for over a week and I SO miss reading your post. THat tomato and asparagus thing looks DREAMY and I'm gonna get me one of those sun tea jars. Ahhh, I love summer!!

  21. I can almost bet the Amish guy is taking his flowers to a produce auction!! Do you have one fairly close by?We have one about a mile from here...awesome places to go!

  22. I think I drank about half a jug of tea myself today! I wish that flower cart would roll by here! I could use some to die for hanging baskets & since I usually kill them mid-summer - he could help me replace them quickly!

  23. This recipe sounds great! Can't wait to make it for by sweetie. BTW a kind grocery manager once told me the only difference between cooking & regular wine is the salt. Salt was originally added to keep the sailors out of the wine!

  24. thank you for the recipe.
    perfect for spring.
    and the amish flower cart IS serenity.
    thank you for that too!

  25. Farmgirl? What ever happened with your asparagus? Did it come back? I've been meaning to ask, and this reminded me. I would love to make some sun tea but, and I may have mentioned this before, we aren't having a whole lot of sunshine at the moment. Have I mentioned that before? Like to keep you up to date, ya know.

  26. Oh my goodness! I have missed reading your blog (as we are renovating and living with my dad whom has dial-up!). It is so funny that you post about weeding through your pictures because I just did this task, (actually just organizing them) three days ago! And you should stop the man and ask him if he would sell you some flowers! We have people that go up to town that sell produce, and we now get delivery service to our house! it is quite nice!

  27. i was going to comment on my late-blooming love for tomatoes, and also my adoration for the way you share recipes, but you distracted me at the end with flower cart man.

    were i not the law-abiding citizen that i am, i would be sorely tempted to hold up that cart and make off with the petaled bounty. but alas, i don't do nefarious well. (i'm quite certain i'd instead find myself buying a few flats from the fellow, trading pie recipes, possibly scheduling play dates for our littles. my stint as a bandit would last five seconds, tops.)

  28. I had to update you. I made my sun tea in a vintage gallon jar I had and was so thrilled with myself. When I went to retrieve it from the porch I realized the lid doesn't fit tight and I had a jar full of ants. Shoot Dang!! No worries though I went to Walmart after church today and got a cute orange one. While I was there I got the stuff for the pasta. So, it's all good! Have a great holiday!!

  29. We have several Amish families that drive by my house in their horse and buggies every Sunday afternoon, but they don't bring flowers. Love that photo!

    My hubby is a BIG fan of sun tea. Thank you for the recipe. Sounds wonderful.

  30. Sun you need the sun? Mother Nature just had a temper tantrum on us and it SNOWED this weekend.

    Thank you heaps for the recipes. :) I'm glad to have found your blog; it's a highlight.

  31. wow, i love the final image in this post. i clicked-to-enlarge it and it is just so cool.

    delicious post!


  32. I added your blog to my reader a while back...although I don't remember now how I originally found you. Anyway, I just wanted to say you inspire me. I love your down to earth writing style. And you have a beautiful family.

  33. I have got to get a new sun tea jar! You're making my mouth water for sun tea and fresh tomatoes!

  34. i made it and totally loved it!
    thank you, a new staple for my family :)
    did your recipe have the nutrition facts included?

  35. I always love your recipes...and that easy and soo good! I love the last picture ~ what a wonderful thing to see everyday:)

  36. I am so totally going to make this! Thanks!

    When I was wandering Costco the other day, they were offering a yummy sample. Chopped romas and cucumber, drizzled with olive oil and tossed with crumbled feta. Oh my.

  37. So what's the name of this great tomato-asparagus recipe that I'm going to try soon?