What's Cooking in Carolina?

Mainly creative menus and recipes (usually healthy) and always from scratch with tips for party planning, theme parties, weddings and decorating tips so you can give swank parties or dinners to delight your guests from a part time caterer, owner/operator of a coming soon Entree Vous, but mainly a cook and eater who grows much of her own food and loves to laugh.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Gardens and Drought and Okra

The garden is really coming in now so lots of meals are veggies. The big issue is the drought. We had 1/3" rain yesterday and it was the first rain in almost 50 days. It is incredibly dry; so much so that we are starting to turn off the watering to parts of the garden and vineyard seedlings out of concern for the well!

Earlier in the week, we were running errands and were in the vicinity of Whole Foods and dropped in. There were a numbers of tastings going on. One was compound butters and they were tasting in on rainbow trout. Boy, was it good (the trout) so I bought some. It was farm raised in western, NC and was just delicious. So I came home and cooked it up. With fresh veggies, of course. Corn on the Cob, Oven Fried Okra.
Oven Fried Okra reminds us of pop corn. And it is so much better for you than frying it. It's easy too. Just beat up a couple of eggs, cut your okra into 1/2" rounds into the eggs. Coat well. Put into yellow cornmeal and coat well. Move onto a parchment lined sheetpan (for easy clean-up) and pop into a 400 degree oven. Shake a few times during cooking. Take out when lightly browned and add salt and pepper! Yum!

We've had pasta with pesto, eggplant parmesan, chicken cacciatore, pork chops with okra, onions, tomatoes and corn, and roasted tomato basil soup!

We grow these peas under our corn to keep the weeds in check, the way the Indians used to. They are good for the soil. Last year I didn't even harvest them because I had plenty in the freezer. I ran out so we have been harvesting them like crazy. We wait until they are almost totally dried on the vine (easy in a year when there is no rain). They look like black eye peas but is what is grown locally, called pink eye purple hulls for obvious reasons. We love them!


I am trying to get this complete for Weekend Herb Blogging hosted this week by famous bread-baker Zorra from Kochtopf. I've been too busy to submit or read it!! Be sure you stop by and check it out. I wish we could have a rainy day so I could find the time to catch up!! An okra recipe that is delicious and healthy should add to the array of dishes that get submitted. I can eat okra almost any way. Doesn't that okra, corn and tomato recipe look great!

Sorry for the slow posting rate. As you can see we've been eating well and cooking and canning in addition to working on getting Entrée Vous under construction, ordering, planning, marketing, etc. I'll give an update soon! My newsletter is about to come out! Did I mention we've had more back to back days more than 100 degrees since I can remember?

Be back soon! Check out the website for other great recipes!

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9 Comments:

  • At 12:29 PM, Blogger katiez said…

    I plant pumpkin in my corn :-)
    That's what our summer was like last year - watering ban and no rain for 6 weeks.
    This year I've watered twice and the temp hasn't gotten above 78F!
    I'm afraid nothing is going to get ripe!
    Now I know why farmers talk about the weather...
    I don't think we'll even have a grape harvest!

     
  • At 5:28 AM, Anonymous zorra said…

    Hope the rain is coming soon! I need to try the okra pop-corn!

     
  • At 1:41 PM, Blogger JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said…

    Welcome to The Foodie Blogroll!

     
  • At 10:12 PM, Blogger Kalyn said…

    Would you believe I have not tasted fried okra? I know I'm culturally deprived. I like it in gumbo though, so I bet I'd like it.

    Sorry to hear about the lack of rain. I water my garden with sprinklers, which is horrendously expensive, but does the job.

     
  • At 2:45 AM, Blogger Maria Helene Schlösser said…

    Well, i could hand lots of rain over to you. We were at the brink of flooding last week. Its grey cold and nasty here. So for a change hand over the hot sun, I´ll hand you a couple of clouds instead.
    Yummy recipe!!

     
  • At 7:37 PM, Blogger Noah Oliphant said…

    Okra season! I love it grilled. Check out a great recipe for it here:

    reciperate.com

     
  • At 11:05 PM, Blogger JANET said…

    Such wonderful summer recipes. I love the baked okra idea!

     
  • At 10:17 PM, Blogger Pookah said…

    Thanks for commenting everyone.

    Katie, when can we have a happy medium!

    Zorra, send the rain and pop the okra!

    Kalyn, Give it a try. Okra gets a bad rap for the slime. If you like it in soup, you'll love it "oven" fried. Try okra poppers too!

    Helene: Traded! sun for clouds for a few weeks!

    Noah, I thought I'd grilled everything but had not thought of okra! tomorrow~

    Janet,
    Thanks!!

    Baked to gumbo freezing (really)

     
  • At 8:04 PM, Blogger Deborah Dowd said…

    I can't wait to try the oven fried okra! I love the "southern popcorn" and this is a great way to enjoy it without all the calories and heating up quarts of oil. Thanks for the tip!

     

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