The Family Food Project – Challenge – Start Your Veggie Garden Now?

You may have already planted your tulip and daffodil bulbs…but what about your garlic bulbs?

Garlic has been a successful and easy crop for me – so I urge you to try it for yourself!

Start a Veggie Garden Now! Plant Garlic!

Step 1: Start with locally grown garlic. Your best bet is to buy it at a Farmer’s Market or from a local seed catalogue.

Step 2: Find a sunny spot in your garden (can be in the flower garden too as they are an interesting and pretty plant!.

Step3: Divide the garlic heads into individual cloves – take care to keep the papery skin on them. (Each clove will produce one full garlic head)

Step 4: Loosen up the soil and plant the individual cloves pointy side up – about 3 inches deep and 6 inches apart.

Step 5: Cover with soil and top that off with leaves to keep them cozy for the whole winter.

Your garlic will be one of the first plants to push through the soil in the spring. You might not think that will be exciting now- but just wait! After a long winter, you will be thrilled to see the green shoots!

In early summer you will notice long curly spikes  – these are Garlic Scapes – it is best to snap these off so that the energy goes into the bulb. But don’t compost those…..chop them up and use them like garlic in your recipes. Great in pesto! I store them in water in a vase on the counter. It looks like an exotic bouquet!

You can harvest your garlic in the mid-summer. Let them dry in a single layer in a shady, dry spot in the house for about 2 weeks to ‘cure’. Rub the dirt off of them and store in a dry spot in your kitchen (not the fridge). You will love the fresh flavor of your very own garlic!

The Family Food Project – Challenge – Create Your List of Bail Out Meals

Do you ever have those days that nothing seems to be going smoothly:  a stressful day at work, nothing planned for dinner, kids have to be in different places in 1 hour and everyone is hungry? You want to be able to pull together a healthy meal but the drive-thru is looking like the easier, sanity-saving option.

It is for those times, my friends,  that you need your own list of easy, quick, tried and true bailout meals.

I am not talking about frozen chicken fingers and fries either (you know that Nutrition Coach Edie wouldn’t suggest that!).
There are other choices that will be oh so much healthier and almost as easy as that.

Create Your List of Bail Out Meals

Stick to this criteria when making your list of bailout meals:

1. Real, unprocessed food
2. Ingredients can be kept in freezer or cupboard for several months or they are ingredients that you always have on hand.
3. Dinner can be on the table in 20 minutes or less
4. Everyone in the family likes the meal

When you have your list of 3 or 4 bails out meals ready, keep it taped inside a pantry cupboard door or in your Meal Planning Kit
Make sure to write out your list of meals – you may think that you don’t need to, but when one of those days arises and you are trying to think of what to eat whilst under pressure – you will be happy to be able to take a quick look at your list.

As you use up the ingredients in a bailout meal – make sure to write them on your next grocery list.

Here are a few of my bailout meals:
Curried Tuna Wraps with Peas: Mix drained cans of light tuna with (real) mayonnaise and curry powder (to taste). Wrap in a tortilla – you can put it in a panini press if you have one. Serve with cooked peas (frozen).
Black Bean Couscous Salad: Cook couscous according to package directions. Drain and rinse a can of black beans and add to couscous. Mix in chopped veggies that you have on hand. Lightly stir in a little oil and vinegar vinaigrette. You can add some chopped herbs if you have some.
Omelette or Scrambled Eggs, Toast, and Smoothie: I don’t think a recipe is required here.