This and That

I’ve been busy the last couple of days doing inventory on my seed stores and planning my 2016 seed orders. I store most of my seeds in ziploc bags inside plastic boxes, organized into various groups like brassicas, salad greens, etc. I also have some small ziploc bags and larger plastic vials I use to store seeds I’ve saved. I’m not always so organized in other areas of my life, but when it comes to seeds I have found it pays to have some kind of a system.

seed storage

seed storage

Of course, when you have nosy cats like we do they always want to get involved with any activities. Puddin couldn’t quite figure out whether a seed packet was a toy, or something to eat! In the end she decided to sleep on it, something she does quite well.

Puddin helping with seed inventory

Puddin helping with seed inventory

I’ve been wanting to try my hand at making ginger beer for some time. It’s a fermented ginger drink that is loaded with probiotics and a refreshing way to enjoy the health benefits of ginger root. It’s possible to make an alcoholic ginger beer, but I’m aiming for something that’s mildly fermented and naturally carbonated. You start the process by making a cultured ginger mix (called a ginger bug), created by letting fresh grated ginger root ferment in sugar water until it is bubbly. I’m following instruction in The Art of Fermentation by Sandor Katz, though instructions can also be found in the popular Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. My ginger bug became active after only 48 hours, and you can see the bubbles in the below photo. The next step will be to make the ginger beer itself, once I get some Grolsch type flip-top bottles.

bubbly ginger bug

bubbly ginger bug

In other news, my wife and I enjoyed a recent visit to Hawaii which let us get a little time away plus soak up some warmth and sunshine. I’ve always wanted to hike up Diamond Head, and we did just that one clear, sunny morning. My wife got an image of me at the top with Honolulu and Waikiki Beach far below. The view was well worth the climb, which was actually pretty easy.

me on Diamond Head

me on Diamond Head

You can see another view of the iconic Diamond Head crater (just over my wife’s head) in the below photo, taken by me during an early morning walk on Waikiki beach. My wife did a great writeup on her blog about our Honolulu trip and the back story on why we went there, so I won’t try and repeat it here.

Lynda on Waikiki beach

Lynda on Waikiki beach

I hope you have enjoyed a look at some of the fun I’ve been having lately, both at home and away. I’ll be back next week for Harvest Monday, and I have actually been doing some harvesting here!

 

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6 Responses to This and That

  1. Margaret says:

    I have basically the same seed storage using Tupperware containers and zip locks – makes seeing what you have and finding a particular packet super easy.

    Your trip sounds amazing – I’ve never been to Hawaii but would love to one day.
    Margaret recently posted…End of Season Review – CarrotsMy Profile

  2. Will - Eight Gate Farm - NH says:

    I prefer to stuff all packets into a shoebox. It provides hours of amusement rifling through looking for what you need at that moment. That ginger beer starter looks really interesting (I love a Dark & Stormy!). Please keep us updated on your progress. Grolsch bottles are hard to come by–maybe go to a brew-supply store and buy a capper and some caps. You can use any non-screw-cap bottles then. Glad you had fun in Hawaii.

    • Dave says:

      Hah – I still have fun when I forget to put seeds back and have to look all over for them! I will give an update on the ginger beer when it is ready to drink.

  3. Mark Willis says:

    It’s interesting to “put a face to the name” Dave, with that pic of you! The weather back home must be a shock to you. You chose a good time to be away!
    Mark Willis recently posted…Too early for SpringMy Profile

  4. Mike Yaeger says:

    Had to look up the ginger beer recipe in Nourishing Traditions. Looks like I’m going to need some supplies. Does Katz’s method differ much? His book has been on my wish list for too long…I need to just go ahead and order it.

    • Dave says:

      I think Katz is more ‘casual’ with his recipes, including the one for ginger beer, but it’s basically the same. He does mention he has also used turmeric and galangal to make sodas. I want to add a little turmeric to my next batch. I got my first taste today and I love it so far!

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