Tag Archives: Salsa

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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Let’s Salsa! Creating a Beautiful Salsa Garden

Let’s Salsa! Creating a Beautiful Salsa Garden

I love themed gardens. I think I’ve mentioned that before. It’s fun to decide what the theme will be for your garden and then to find all the things you will put in your bed. This includes the plants but also this is where you can get really creative with accessories for the garden in the way of structures or decorations. In this way a themed garden is only limited by your budget and your imaginations, and I suppose the area you have to plant.

Today I want to talk about salsa gardens. I do a salsa garden every year. Even for the year that we lived in a high rise apartment in Houston, I had a salsa garden on the 14 x 12 patio. Although it was just container tomatoes, cilantro and jalapenos, it got the job done.

Now that I have my country place with room to sprawl I have found my problem to be…stop…adding…plants! = ) This is a great problem to have, and I am certainly not complaining. I’m not bragging, I’m blessed.

So let me give you some ideas about what I think makes a great salsa garden. I break this in to five sections: tomatoes, greens, peppers, onions, other. I try to grow at least three of these. The tomatoes are just always best home grown. Greens are inexpensive and really easy, so why not grow them? Peppers are pretty easy too and can easily be in a container. I have only started doing onions since I have had a little more room to do so. The “other” section is almost always gotten from a farmers market as these are usually more exotic finds.

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