Showing posts with label garden. Show all posts
Showing posts with label garden. Show all posts

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Loquat Crumble Pie

These are the loquats that I picked from my tree last weekend. I had no idea what to do with them at first and I knew I had to use them all or else they would go bad since they are completely organic and once picked they tend to go pretty fast.

I thought about making marmalade but again it probably wouldn't keep for that long since I wouldn't be using any preservatives so I kept looking for some ideas and I stumbled upon this...

Ok then! I decided to try making a loquat pie and see just how amazing they really are! 

...Pretty amazing I have to admit. 

Begin by peeling and de-seeding the loquats cutting them into fourths. This takes some time but it's not as bad as it seems. 

I used about 4 cups of loquats. Add to a pot with about 2 cups of water and let cook on medium heat for 15 - 20 minutes. 

Next make a mixture of:

 1 cup of sugar, 
1/2 cup of all purpose flour, 
1 teaspoon of cinnamon, 
1/2 teaspoon of ginger, 
1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg, 
1 teaspoon of vanilla 
pinch of salt. 

Once the loquats are cooked through add the flour mixture and continue stirring until it thickens up nicely. 

After about a couple minutes the filling is ready. Set aside and let cool while you make the pie crust. My kitchen was smelling so good at this point and it was at that time I realized that this recipe was a keeper!

I used the pie recipe found here and used half of the ingredients because I only made the bottom portion of the pie crust and for the top I made a crumble crust by mixing 1 stick of room temperature butter, 1 cup of all purpose flour, 1/2 cup of brown sugar. Mix until crumbly and cover the pie. 

Bake in a preheated oven for 350° for 30 minutes. It you see the top start to brown too much cover with aluminum foil. 

I decorated with some powdered sugar and served with vanilla ice cream :-)

and with this I think I might have to agree with Kristen Stewart...loquats make the best pies!

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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The Golden Afternoon

I debated on whether to write about the delicious Chicken Marsala I made this past weekend or posting about my garden.  I decided to share with you my outdoor space that unfortunately we haven't gotten around to using much yet because the temperature has dropped again.  

We had a few weeks of really warm - almost summer like - weather and now all of a sudden we're back to cold and rainy blah!  Saturday afternoon though was lovely so I was able to get a few shots of my blooming garden. 

This is my loquat tree and for the first time in the 5 years we've lived in our home it is full of fruits! They are still maturing but I can't wait to taste them. 

Above is another picture of my loquat Tree. 

Here you can see baby pomegranate's sprouting.  Can't wait to make some Pomegranate Martinis as soon as they mature!  It's a little early for that though... 

Above you can see some tart cherries starting to bud. Tart cherries are different than regular cherries in that they are smaller and more acidic. They are called "Amarene" in Italian and are great for making jam or used in baking pies. They are mainly native of Europe and Southwest Asia. They are still really tiny now so I will get a better picture once they mature. 

I also have two lemon trees but I'm having some problems with them... They used to grow so many more fruits but these past two years they haven't really been growing much. Not sure what the problem is.  I might have to call a gardener and see if they have some type of pest or disease. There is however a cement wall behind them so they might not be getting enough sun.  Not too sure what's going on there... 

Lastly I have a little kumquat tree. 

He's just a little guy but usually gives me lots of sweet citrusy goodness :-)  It's still early for him though. 

I also have a grapevine but didn't get any pictures. I'll make sure to get some pictures once it blooms.

Here is the rest of my outdoor space where we like to sit outside and take in the sunshine and just relax. 

My garden is behind the fence you see in the photo below. I know in the pictures above it seems like a big space to have all those trees but it really isn't that big. The trees are just close together. They were there when we moved in and I can't really say that I like them that way. I probably would have done things a bit differently.  I would have loved to add a rose garden. 

Here is a better view of the patio.

I got those front door planters for real cheap and I just love them. I added two hydrangea plants to add some color. I just hope they don't die on me...

Hope you enjoyed the tour of my garden and I'll be back soon with the Chicken Marsala recipe! 

PS - someone else wants to say hello

Hope you're having a great week :-)