Are you wondering what these two have in common? They are two recipes I want to share for Mother's Day.
First, is the recipe for broccoli salad - this is such a Midwest standby that if you have ever been to a potluck, funeral or BBQ in the Midwest you have probably eaten this salad.
I got this recipe from my Grandma Edna - My Grandma was a strong lady raising three kids and running a farm by herself for years after my Grandfather died. She crocheted strawberry potholders, had nine grandchildren, and was very proud of her family.
This is yours truly circa 1978 or so (don't you love the big glasses), with my Mom, my Grandma Edna and my Baby Sister.
In honor of Grandma Edna, we will be eating this on Mother's Day, probably with a baked ham.
GRANDMA EDNA'S BROCCOLI SALAD
- 3 bunches of broccoli
- ¼ cup sliced red onion
- 1 lb. bacon, fried and crumbled
- ½ cup yellow raisins
- ½ cup sunflower seeds (optional)
- ½ cup mayonnaise (use less for a lower fat version. I generally only use 1/4 cup)
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 T. cider vinegar
Combine dressing ingredients.
Cut broccoli into small florets.
Combine with remaining ingredients.
Refrigerate 3 hours or overnight.I still remember the day she gave me this recipe - we were at her house for a family gathering and she made it. My Younger Sister and I loved it and thankfully got the recipe that day.
Now for the second recipe - Organic Fertilizer.
For the last eight years our tradition has been to plant Mom's Garden on Mother's Day. Gardening is a tradition that I have brought with me from the Midwest and that I love to share with my kids. Even though my life borders on chaos, I cherish the thought of "leading a quiet life, . . . and to work with your hands." I remember my Grandma's strawberry garden and hope someday the kids will remember my garden.
In our maritime northwest where the rain can linger until July 4th, Mother's Day is about perfect timing for putting vegies in the ground.
I started some seeds inside a couple of weeks ago. It is actually really easy to do. You can calculate when you need to start the seeds by referring to a seed-starting chart, or you can just do it whenever you have time, a few weeks before the ground warms, which is how we do it.
To start the seeds inside, put the seed-start mix in a bucket and moisten it until it is damp. Fill some cells in a seed starter tray with the moist mix and place two seeds on top of the mix in each cell. Cover the tray with a plastic dome to keep everything moist and put the tray in a warm spot. We also use a seed-starting mat which keeps things at the right temp. You can order the Hydrofarm CK64050 Germination Station with Heat Mat which includes everything you need to start seeds. Depending on the type of seeds, you will see new life in 7 - 14 days.
Once you see the new sprouts, remove the tray from the seed starting mat, take off the plastic dome and set the tray two inches below grow lights. The Hydrofarm Jump Start T5 Grow Light System works great and is very easy to use. These lights need to be left on for 16 hours - we have ours set on a timer. Keep the seeds wet but not soaking.
When the seedlings develop two pairs of leaves, remove the weaker.
Move the lights up as the seedlings grow so the tops of the plants are one or two inches from the bulbs. A fan blowing on the seedlings will help with growth as well.
After five weeks, move them to larger pots. Harden off six to seven week old seedlings by slowly exposing them to the outside elements. You can do this by moving them to a shaded place outside on a warm day for a few hours. Each day gradually increase exposure to sun and breeze. By the end of the week, leave them out overnight (as long as it is not going to frost).
Prepare your garden beds with a fresh layer of organic compost and the following organic fertilizer before you transplant your seedlings outside.
Recipe for Organic Fertilizer
You do not need to be precise when measuring. The seed meal and lime are the most important ingredients, and as you build your supply of fertilizer, you can add the latter ingredients as you can afford them.
This organic recipe is from my favorite book,Growing Vegetables West of the Cascades: The Complete Guide to Organic Gardening.
We definitely are not Master Gardeners, but with a little bit of effort our garden will be overflowing by the end of summer with carrots, lettuce, tomatoes, potatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and enough broccoli to make a little salad!
A wife (or I say Mother) of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
Her husband has full confidence in her and (she)
lacks nothing of value.
She brings him good, not harm,
all of the days of her life.
She opens her arms to the poor
and extends her hands to the needy.
She is clothed in strength and dignity;
she can laugh at days to come.
She speaks with wisdom,
and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
She watches over the affairs of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
"Many women do noble things,
but you surpass them all."
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
Give her the reward she has earned,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.
This is a very old and old fashioned in some of its thinking, but I love it. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you know what it is from.
Happy Mother's Day!