Wild and Crazy, Maggie and Attila Style

Wild and Crazy, Maggie and Attila Style

Throwing caution to the wind, we were wild and crazy on a Friday night! We had a camp fire in the back yard, roasted potatoes and onions in foil in the embers. The embers weren’t ready until after 11:00 p.m., the potatoes weren’t ready until well after midnight. And then what did we do? We sat down and ate fire baked potatoes and onions with sour cream until we couldn’t move, then we went to bed to sleep off our indulgences. And then we slept in the next morning. That was fun.

Late nights are not for us as a rule, Attila is up at 5:30 a.m. every weekday morning so we go to bed early. Sleeping in on the weekends is a real treat, usually we sleep until seven or eight in the morning, and on rare occasions nine. Getting back on schedule after staying up late is wearying, so we don’t do this often.

Summer is approaching, and with it comes the busiest season of my year, food preservation season. Attila is at the end of his busiest season, which is the garden planting season. He still has about two dozen plants that have yet to go into the ground. They are waiting on harvesting the the Spinach in my raised bed, when the soil will become available for a second planting. The Spinach was harvested today!

We start off the preservation season slowly, with Rhubarb this year. About 24 cups of diced Rhubarb were frozen for the winter. Today the Spinach (Bloomsdale Longstanding) was harvested, yielding 16 servings that were blanched, packaged, and frozen for the winter.

Not all the vegetables from the garden are preserved. Every day fresh produce is harvested to grace the table: Spinach, Garlic Scapes, Lettuce (Tom Thumb), Peas (Green Arrow), Beets (Fuer Kugel), Radishes, Strawberries (VeeStar). Every day a fresh salad is prepared. At present the salad consists primarily of Lettuce, fresh Peas, diced fresh Pea pods, and fresh Spinach from the garden, the Onions and Cucumber are purchased. We no longer buy any vegetables that cannot be peeled before being eaten raw, and we have long anticipated our summer “garden salad days”.

Salad dressing is homemade at Mist Cottage. Attila makes his own, using whatever ingredients appeal to him at the time, tasting and tweaking until it is just right. I am much lazier when it comes to salad dressings. I tried plain Cowboy Candy Juice, but the consistency did not suit me. Then I had a brainstorm. I mixed Cowboy Candy Juice with an equal part of sour cream. Wow, I love this stuff, it makes a wonderful salad dressing.

A free packet of Kale (Russian Red or Ragged Jack) were received with out last seed order, so Attila planted a lot of Kale this year. I have been a bit concerned about this, about Kale taking up so much of our garden real estate. I purchased Kale several years ago and hated it. It was a curly variety and I found the texture very unpleasant. The Russian Red Kale has ragged leaves, not frilly. Tonight Attila brought in some harvested Kale to try. He suggested I cook it in the Instant Pot, which I did, steamed for three minutes. We like it! This result was so unexpected. I am going to try dehydrating it in a very slow oven, which will bake it. Then I can put it into the food processor and create a green powder for winter soups and casseroles. For eating straight from the garden, the Instant Pot is definitely the way to go with Kale!

Attila and I were out for a walk the other day. We passed a home where it appeared the elderly woman who lives there is no longer in residence. Items of hers have been left at the curb, off and on, since the snow disappeared. Some of the items are valuable, such as the antique high chair. Other items are of little interest to most people, but of some interest to us. We have found and brought home vintage fabrics, a lovely little baking dish, thread, garden border, Rhubarb plants, and other small items that we would use on a day to day basis. This weekend though, I was delighted to find two boxes of vintage canning jars, and an empty 4 litre jar pickle jar. As we picked up these items, I sent a silent thank you to the woman, wherever she is. I will think of her kindly from time to time, well into the future. I hope she is happy and loved to the end of her days.



Updated on Sun, Jun 13, 7:25 PM
27 °C
Partly cloudy
Wind 6 SW km/h
Humidity 42 %
Visibility 27 km
Sunrise 5:23 AM
Wind gust 9 km/h
Pressure 100.7 kPa
Ceiling 10000 m
Sunset 8:52 PM


“He will always be a slave who does not know how to live upon a little.”
65 BC – 8 BC


  1. And there weren’t you just the other day (hopefully I’ve got the correct blogger) that you were short of those items. It was like getting a member’s ticket at a select sporting club…..you had to wait for someone to die before your name came to the top of the list…..so it was with your jars, you had to use the contents to be able to have an available jar. Hopefully you understand my comparison

  2. Eileen C Barton

    You crazy kids staying up so late! 🙂 Good for you! You had my mouth watering thinking of those potatos and onions. Love seeing what is coming out of your garden. I just have bits and pieces growing here and there besides flowers. Some herbs and a planter of onions and will be putting out some lettuce seeds soon but that is about it. I do enjoy your posts.

  3. Cathy, I do understand your comparison! Fortunately the lady has not died, I researched to find that out. I hope she feels a little warm hug every time someone appreciates one of her “donations”! I will certainly be thinking about her when I look at these jars!

  4. Eileen, we did feel like kids there for a while, lol! The pototoes and onions were absolutely great, it is my favourite way to prepare potatoes. When Terra was little I would take her camping in the summer, just the two of us. We would have a camp fire in the evenings, and after she went to bed I would stay up and roast potatoes in the embers. In the morning I would prepare the potatoes for her, topped with melted chees. It is one of her favourite memories of childhood. I loved it too. I also cooked planked fresh caught fish over a camp fire during those summers, so wonderful.
    Your garden sounds ecelctic and wonderful, a little bit of this and a little bit of that, food for the soul and body! I am glad you enjoy the posts, I enjoy the comments!

  5. Teri

    As we were getting ready to move to the cottage recently over a month or so we left many items out at the curb. We were very glad to put things out that we couldn’t fit into the cottage. We liked that those who took the items would most likely be people who would love/appreciate them.

  6. Bex

    You must have a gigantic freezer – ? in the basement ? to store all that produce. I had to look up Cowboy Candy – it wouldn’t do for us as we don’t like “hot” things very much. I (used to) mix sour cream with a small jar of mild salsa and loved that to pieces. Ah, those were the days… of eating…

  7. Thanks Joan, we had a great time, right here in our own backyard. I love my harvest season diet, fresh veggies every day. In the winter it is all root vegetables and frozen vegetables, which are lovely in their way, but fresh vegetables are the best. I was very glad that the woman had not died. She lived there alone with very few visitors for over a decade that we know of, so hopefully she is now in a place where she has good care and good company, which I suspect is the case, she was very well off.

  8. Bex, we do have a freezer, it was new after we moved here. Since we eat all the vegetables we freeze there is a constant rotation in the freezer, food doesn’t stay there for long, it fills, it is emptied, it fills, it is emptied, and so it goes.
    Well, I don’t like hot foods either. But I fell in love with Cowboy Candy. I can’t explain it, it is just so tasty. I feel for you re the food thing, so difficult. You seem to be able to explore and discover some very tasty ways around your challenges though, those sweet potatoes sound amazing!

  9. Teri

    The best story for the things we gave away was when DH chose to let go of his stein collection. This was before we started to put everything out on the curb. He posted on a neighborhood group on Facebook and someone said he’d like the collection. When the man picked up the box at the driveway he told DH how he was supposed to inherit steins his father had collected but when he went to the house after his father died the steins were already gone, but now he happily has DH’s collection to take their place. That made us smile.

    I have a food combination that seems to affect me the way the Cowboy Candy seems to affect you: red pepper jelly with cream cheese. I absolutely love it!

  10. That is so heartwarming, the stein collection gift! That sounds so good, pepper jelly and cream cheese! I will have to make some pepper jelly to try it out, I’ve found a brand of lactose free cream cheese, I am in business!

  11. Nancy

    Dear Maggie and everyone I have met, through Maggie. I don’t feel like writing now….perhaps in the next week. Short version….long day at University of Texas, southwest…seeing 4 different doctors; having a Cat-scan, ECHO of heart, lots of different lab work…. Sounds like a stressful day and it was. Main revelation….no more aneurysms, and a doc felt all the stents from June of last year look promising.
    But, that isn’t the only tragedy…. My oldest brother died 6/4; No way possible for me to go…will have to make a trip to see my sister-in-law. They live in Lake Charles, La.
    June 7….Jason and Meredith’s birthday. This one was so painful. Ever tried to not cry when you REALLY need to? The birthday really affects Meredith, as she lost her twin brother.
    I will check in with soon….with some positive feelings. Promise. xxoo Margarett

  12. Nancy,

    Wow, you are having quite the week, all those medical tests. I feel worn out just going for a blood test, I cannot imagine the weariness of all that you are going through. That is such good news about the aneurysms and the stents!

    Condolences on the the loss of your brother. {{HUGS}}

    Sorry to hear the birthdays were so painful this year.

    Take good care of yourself.


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