Garden Magic – Cilantro to Coriander!

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Dried Cilantro

Each spring the cilantro seeds that dropped from the year before sprout around my patio.  It’s been about 10 years since I actually bought and planted the original cilantro, however each year I get another crop from the seeds that dropped the previous year.  This year I decided to gather the cilantro seeds and use them in the kitchen.  Here’s how to save the magic and at the end you’ll have your own homegrown and harvested coriander herb!

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Coriander Seed

Let the cilantro go to seed.  After the plants have dried, collect the stems by cutting them right above the ground.  Place the stems carefully into a paper bag so that you can shake off all the seeds (coriander).  If some of the seeds seem to still be a little green they can be dried.  Place the coriander on a shallow baking sheet, preheat the oven to it’s lowest temperature, place the baking sheet into the oven and cut off the oven.

Once completely dry after a few hours place the coriander into an air tight jar and enjoy!  They can also be vacuum sealed in bags if you plan to save them for a later date.  Enjoy!20150731_070645_zpslxpwgwoo

In A Pickle With Okra

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I tried something a little different. Over the past few weeks I put up some pickles but this time I’m trying to make some pickled okra. I wasn’t sure of the recipe so I found one in an old cookbook. The recipe called for garlic, salt, dill weed, sugar and vinegar. I only had enough okra to do two jars so one is hot, I added pepper flakes and in the others just garlic and dill. Talk about smelling the kitchen up! Why didn’t I have enough okra to do more…because I love fried okra!

Cucumbers! What to do!!??

I got out my old “Favorite Recipes of Alabama Vocational Home Economics Teachers” cookbook this morning to look for a pickle recipe.  Remember those cookbooks?  We sold them in high school to raise money for different projects.  Since my cucumbers were doing so well and I’m running out of space in the refrigerator I decided to try pickles again.  I always loved my mom’s bread and butter pickles and so I thought I’d give it a try.

Sliced cucumbers and onions from my garden. I love using my mom’s old canning pan. It brings back memories of when she would put up tomatoes, corn and Bread n Butter pickles! Continue reading

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