Tag Archives: recipes

Longer Days, Shorter Posts, Must be Spring

Longer Days, Shorter Posts, Must be Spring

Spring, we’re one week in.

Days are getting warmer, sometimes, dare I say, hot. There are garden chores enough to keep one busy a good part of the day. Unfortunately, I have school with two boys which also would like to command a great deal of my day. I guess unfortunately isn’t really the best word, I mean, it is school. What I really mean is, I wish I had more time.

What I’ve been noticing is, as the days grow longer, my blogs have begun to shrink. I think that is just the way it is going to have to be for a while. As I begin to spread myself thinner, holes have begun to appear.

Patrick has had a huge breakthrough with reading, and I really have to take advantage of this with everything in me.

All that to say, here’s a recipe for the chicken tacos my family loves. The cilantro is from the garden. Usually, many of the items are from the garden, but the cilantro is the last hold out from last years crop. My son, Ryan, has developed and perfected this recipe and we enjoy it very often at the Gunz house. Enjoy it.

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Stuff You Missed in Botany: Scoville Scale

Stuff You Missed in Botany: Scoville Scale

Some like it hot and some sweat when the heat is on...”~Robert Palmer (via Duran Duran)

This pepper is hot. But what does that mean? Hot when it comes to the spiciness of a pepper is subjective, right? I mean, two serranos in a Thai stir-fry is approaching the right “heat” for my son, but has me running for the milk and an alternative meal. Subjective.

If only there were some way to quantify the spiciness of a pepper without relying on the conjecture of an individuals palate. Thank you Wilbur Scoville.

In 1912, Wilbur Scoville devised a method called the Scoville Organoleptic Test, giving us a scale that measures the capsaicinoid content of a substance. In other words, how “hot” something is depends on how much capsaicin is in it.


So, what’s not and what’s hot?

The scale is pretty straightforward. If a pepper has a lot of capsaicin, it’s hot. If it has less capsaicin, it’s mild. Here is a nicely colored picture available from http://hottestseeds.com

Scoville scale

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Throwback Thursday: Moss Rose

Throwback Thursday: Moss Rose

On Throwback Thursday I try to shine the spotlight on an heirloom variety. For some people, this is an introduction to a treasure from the past, for others a memory spark about a long forgotten favorite.

Today’s Thursday Throwback is Moss Rose, or Portulaca. This is also called Common Purslane and is considered an edible plant, good eaten in salad and also in stir-fry.

Portulacaceae: Portulaca grandiflora: Portulaca, Moss Rose

Moss Rose is extremely hardy. So hardy in fact that it can become invasive if you don’t discipline it regularly. However, it’s so pretty, you may choose to ditch the grass and keep the Moss Rose. Portulaca comes in many shades of red, orange, pink, white, and yellow. This little guy is so tough, you can often find it growing in the crevices of sidewalks, between paving stones and even in cracks of building foundations.

Portulaca has a really low profile, preferring to meander close to the ground. If pruned properly, it can reach it’s full height of about 30″. Okay enough of the jibber jabber, let’s see the flowers.



White Sundial








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Paisley Plant of the Week: Ground Cherry

Paisley Plant of the Week: Ground Cherry

Ground Cherry? Where have you been all of my life?

Grown just like a tomato, this gem of the garden is a delightful addition to any garden. If you love to make jams and pies but don’t have room for many large bushes, this could be an option for you. So what is it?

Ground Cherry Plant

Ground Cherry

Physalis peruviana

You can put Ground Cherry anywhere you would put a tomato plant. The differences are small, but worth mentioning. For one thing, Ground Cherry is quick to germinate and grows faster than tomatoes. Another slight difference is Ground Cherry stems are stiff and rarely if ever, need to be staked. And I guess the most important difference is that the fruit grows in a paper like husk.

Ground Cherry Harvest

They remind me of the Chinese lanterns…fun. Oh, and they have pretty flowers too. A ground cherry by your eggplants make a lovely row.

Flower of "Clammy" Ground Cherry

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