Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Chicken Saltimbocca, Sweet Tea and My Happy Window Garden!

Last night's dinner was Chicken Saltimbocca. I had the last of the prosciutto to use up and finally was able to find some fresh sage. I love this dish, it's sautéed chicken pieces topped with chopped sage, prosciutto and Mozzarella. There's a little white wine sauce too. I usually make it with chives because I can never find sage...and to be honest, we like it better with the chives! I made green beans for Alex and I had mine with a big green salad.

I also made some sweet tea. Using the loose tea makes this so much tastier. Adding the dehydrated orange peels gives it a nice kick too. This will be a great sipper on my porch this summer!

It was so cold yesterday, but I wanted to do something for May Day! I would usually try to find some wildflowers to cheer up the house, but none of them have bloomed yet. Even the dandelions closed up yesterday because of the rain and cold. But I did make these Apple Cream Cheese Rose Tarts. I wanted something that resembled a flower! :) They were yummy but mine did NOT turn out like the photo in the recipe! They never do lol...

My anti-peat-pot-campaign continues. These are tomatoes that I planted in the peat pots that never showed themselves. I re-planted them on Saturday. Four days later and lookie-here. 

The Buttercrunch lettuce is also starting to grow. I'm so happy I followed my gut on this! I'd still be lamenting over dry peat pots and dying sprouts if I didn't! My seedlings are finally happy! :)

I got these photos yesterday of a Red-Winged Blackbird. They are grainy because I was lazy and took them through my rainy, dirty office window!! It's hard to get a photo of these fellas because they are so skiddish. The tiniest move and they're gone. We hear them all spring but I rarely see them in the feeder, they mostly stick to the swamps. It was a nice little discovery while I was ogling my tomato pots!!!

Today I'm off to the mechanic again. This time just to change the tires to all-seasons instead of the winter tires. I must learn to do this myself, but I figure, it gives my trusted mechanic a chance to check the tires and under the car at the same time. If he ever notices something off kilter, he always tells me. He's saved me so much time and money over the last few years by pointing things out that needed a quick fix. But I do hope he finds nothing else today!


  1. Hi! Your meal sure looks yummy but no thank you on the sweet tea! I like mine plain although my daughter and daughter in law likes sweet tea! I had some little peat pots I tried with flowers this year and only one came up in them. The seeds were older so maybe that was part of the problem. I saw my first red winged blackbird this year today!! So pretty! Hoping nicer weather comes soon for both of us! Good luck on your mechanic visit today! Nancy

  2. That meal looks delicious! I like anything topped with cheese. I like cheese topped with cheese! :)

    And just look at all the little seedlings sprouting up! They will be ready to plant in no time :)

    I love red winged blackbirds. Their call is unique. They come to our feeders but usually later on in the year. Right now we have tons of singing sparrows and juncos. I love the juncos. Little gray beasties scurrying around the gardens...they are one of my favorites. I keep a birding journal and have been logging bird visits and migration since the 90's!! I think the most unique bird I ever saw was at our old house, one day sitting down to dinner and I look out the dining room window and there is a ring necked pheasant walking down the middle of the road. Dinner was forgotten as I grabbed my binoculars and my book and just kept on saying "I don't believe this!" Amazing. Slightly off course he was.

    I hope the sun shines soon for you!

  3. It's cold here today. I had a baby robin that was down on the ground confused today. King tried to eat him. Ugh.

  4. That bird looks cold. Your tomatoes are looking good now, give them as much light as you can. I had to move mine out in the sun but some flea beetles ate on the some but I think they are going to do good.

  5. The meal looks delicious. Sweet tea is something that is much easier to come by when moved compared to where I grew up. I have to monitor my intake of it - I would drink it every day all day if I could (not so helpful for potential diabetic).

  6. Those seedlings look good! And YUM! Hub and I would probably prefer chives to sage as well.
    Saw my friend who owns a small garden center and asked her about the problems everyone was having with their seeds. She gave me several suggestions and the reasons for them so I am putting them here because they might help.

    1. Never use peat pots because they are water hoggers. They will suck every bit of water they can from the soil once they are wet. If the outside of the pot is dry they will pull in as much water as they can and if it is soaking wet it allows the soil to stay too wet. Fine for big commercial growers not for home gardeners. They never use them.
    2. Peat pellets should only be used for rooting purposes and the outer netting removed when transplanted. She said it is how they use them and the biggest cause of people not having success when they buy plants that were started in them but the netting not removed before being potted up. (I found this true when I lost a plant bought elsewhere and found the intact pellet when I dug it back up, the poor plant roots were strangled!)
    3. Lots of light! If the plants start to get tall supplement with flourescent tubes. The special grow lights are not necessary but try to use bulbs that say 'daylight' if possible. Keep the light just a few inches above the plants, just high enough so that the plants do not touch the bulb or get too hot.
    4. Make sure that you fertilize once the true leaves come out. Use 1/4 strength liquid fertilizer and fertilize at that rate once a week. It feeds just enough but allows the plant to grow sturdy rather than tall.

    They have been growing veggie and flower plants for resale for over 30 years so I'm confident she knows her stuff!


  7. I forgot one of the most important tips! Whenever possible water from the bottom, let the pot/plants take up as much water as they can (use warm water not too cold not too warm), pour out excess, let them drain for a few hours, pour out excess and sometimes a third time. Over watering is one of the biggest causes of failure, water only when the top 1/4 inch is dry once true leaves have shown. And she said to never water at night.


  8. Hi Nancy :)) My boyfriend loves the sweet tea, I get sick of the sweetness myself. I'm more of a Club Soda gal! :) Our backyard is FULL of birds!! I have to find a place to stake them out so I can take some more pictures!!! :) Thanks, the mechanic visit did go well, I love our mechanic! He's so honest...

  9. Hi Dianna!
    Top it with cheese and I'm THERE. Especially broiled, mmmm...We had lots of Juncos at our last place, but I haven't seen much of them around here. They mostly came in the winter though. That's such a great idea about the birding journal! I have aspirations to do a kind of poster of all the birds we see with a little description of them. I can never seem to find the time! :) I have never seen a ring-necked pheasant! I really love bird-watching. The sun isn't quite out yet, but my fingers are crossed!!

  10. Kristina, your stories about King don't surprise me...sounds a lot like Charlie...she goes after wasps and toads. We have a lot of robins out this week!

  11. Hi Gill :) I'm really happy about the tomatoes!! I can't wait to see if the Romas do well too. They are getting all the sun they can, if only the sun itself would come out!!!

  12. Hi TB :) I know what you mean...there is a LOT of sugar in that sweet tea. Alex can drink a pitcher a day but I find it way too sweet after just a small glass!

  13. Hi Sue :))

    I think the sage is a little strong of a taste for me, but I'm glad I tried it! Chives from my window garden taste so much better :)

    Thank you for those tips!!! I TOTALLY agree (now in hindsight) about the peat pots, I can't stand them. They were water hogs for sure. When we buy our property in a few years, I want to set up a little greenhouse and also a growing area for the spring. That tip about the "daylight" bulbs is a good one! We're renting right now so I don't have the space or motivation to set up something semi-permanent. I also read not to water at night. You're lucky to have someone with that knowledge! I appreciate your comments!! :))

  14. Happy bleated May Day...we've been having storms and flooding but no flooding too near me although I haven't been out of the house but I can't see any! LOL! Love your red winged blackbird. They always remind me of my little farm as they would sit on the fencing and sing. I love sweet tea and where I co me from we call it sunshine tea because we sit it in the sun to brew. Your plants are doing great!

  15. Hi Sam :) Oh I like that, sunshine tea, I'm going to start calling it that! The red-winged black birds are very pretty birds, I love their song too.


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