At Yelton Manor B&B, we are humming the great old tune by The Beatles!
In February, I fell on the ice and broke my shoulder and arm. After a successful surgery and a long 9 weeks of therapy, I am doing very well. Last week my friends Mike and Marci came “in for the assist” from Indiana and put in 5 long hours of shoveling and spreading compost in the garden with me.
I am so grateful!!!!!
Gardens remind us of the fundamental truth: All things must change. The burning bushes that separate the Yelton Manor and The Manor Guest House, gorgeous and beloved for 25 years, now have an incurable disease PLUS are at the end of their lifespan. So they are dying off, one by one, sometimes two by two. As they fall away, we drop what I have come to call “a couple of BIG ASS ROCKS” on their stumps, then I landscape around them. The rocks are strong winter bones. And we like the new look that visually connects the two inns. Plus we can see the span of the garden more fully from our inside vantage points. It’s all good. Thank you to the strong, willing and able friends from Huntree Nursery who did the chain saw massacre and the rock drop this morning.
Robert always hoots out loud when the bill comes from Huntree, as the line item is actually “Big Ass Rocks” on the invoice. Gotta love it.
I treated Matt and his great team to huge glasses of fresh fruit smoothie after the hard work. Organic cherries, raspberries, black raspberries, blueberries, banana, pomegranate and a snidge of yogurt for creaminess. Everyone was happy, the sun was shining and a good day was started perfectly!!!!
Many thanks to all our Yelton Manor B&B team who care deeply about making everything perfect!
Spring isn’t spring at Yelton Manor Bed and Breakfast until the compost arrives!!!! Some women like yellow gold on fingers and wrists, I love the black gold that tops off the perennial border each year!!! Today we got the first 7 yards, there will be 40 more behind this one. We fill over 300 pots, then there is 300 X 12 feet of garden to top off. The smell of it is heaven, we love being attached closely with the earth. Time to put on my sh*t-kickin boots and start in!
Thank you Huntree Nursery for being our steady garden partner for the last 24 years! Jan and Dave’s son Matt is stepping up bigtime into the business now, he’s the real deal and we love him!!!
COMPOST!!!!! Aaaaaah, should be a scratch and sniff option here!!!!!
We are so proud to patronize and feature our local farmers who provide Yelton Manor Bed and Breakfast with so much luscious, organic food!
Be sure to consider one of the coolest “things to do” this summer, a Farm Dinner at Seedling Farm!
The authors of the cookbook “Outstanding in the Field”, which I scarfed up and used repeatedly all last summer, are at it again in 2012.
Fresh gourmet food with wine pairings, a truly wonderful adventure, at Seedling Farm.
Since becoming such an avid herb gardener AND a vegetarian in the last decades, I have become quite willing to take on nearly any adventure imaginable that blends a green leafy herb with a you-name-it nut, garlic, Parmesan cheese and olive oil. There is no end to it! Freeze it, store it, use it for pasta, pizza, bruschetta, this is the simplest, healthiest, tastiest and most beautiful food! Tonight I improvised this concoction, made affordable in winter with some organic baby arugula as the heft of it, accented with some basil. Arugula has an unexpected and pleasant bitterness, very ooh-la-la when used right. I used a penne pasta, absolutely fabulous, but anything you like will work fine. I double the recipe and freeze 1/2 in ice cube trays and use the individual cubes in forthcoming dinners. And don’t forget breakfast, where pesto of all kinds works beautifully with egg dishes like frittatas!
Penne Pasta with Arugula Pesto
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
3 cloves garlic
2 cups chopped arugula
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup grated Parmsan cheese
pinch salt, pinch cayenne
Chop the walnuts and garlic in the food processor. Add arugula and basil until chopped, run the olive oil in a stream until a nice paste forms. Transfer to a bowl and mix in the cheese, salt and cayenne. Use however you please!
We grow cherry tomatoes in big pots right in the walkways to The Manor Guest House. We pluck them right off the vines and pop them into our mouths as we pass by all summer long.
When the cherry tomatoes are ripening by bowlfuls daily, this simple, fresh and delicious appetizer is always appreciated. We grow multi-colored varieties making the presentation extra beautiful.
Cut top off tomatoes, scoop out inner seeds with a melon baller. Stuff with pieces of good quality feta cheese (preferably goat feta cheese). As an option, it’s especially nice to top with a reduced balsamic vinegar. Simply bring some good quality balsamic vinegar to a gentle boil in a small saucepan, stirring, until it is reduced to a thickened syrup. Drizzle over the top of the tomatoes.
Arrange on a pretty platter and top with chopped, fresh dill. Voila!