Hey there – hope all is well!
I’ve definitely been enjoying my summer and I hope you have too! Wedding plans are coming along well. The ceremony is going to be at St. Thomas More Church where Siena Catholic Academy is located and where I used to go to school. The reception will be at Oak Hill Country Club… A country club! Not really me, I know, right? Well, when we found a sponsor and able to see the inside of the place, I fell in love. Oak Hill is gorgeous! And it’s where the PGA is this year. Also, the priest that baptized me and was with me throughout all my Catholic sacraments is presiding at my wedding! It’s nice to have a priest that you actually know – the ceremony will feel more personal that way.
I got another job since my dietary consulting job is just part-time and I am not going back to school next semester. I have to pay loans =( Oh well, it’s not too bad. I’m just so glad they’re from MCC and not from a four year school – would be a lot more. And I’m very glad that Alex has no school loans… Oh the joys of being an A+ student… Which I am far from, haha!
I am extremely excited for my new job – assistant coaching for McQuaid Jesuit crew!! I’ve missed crew so much. I don’t care if I’m not rowing, at least I am involved with the team and back in that type of environment – I can’t wait to teach those boys. It’s going to be so much fun!
My arm workouts have definitely been paying off and I can really see a difference. Now I just want to get my legs more toned and I have the perfect way of doing that – erging! My wonderful fiance purchased an early birthday gift for me – Concept2 Model D!
What is an erg, you say? An erg, or ergo-meter is an indoor rowing machine. Yup! I can row indoors. Granted, it’s not like Pittsford crew where they basically have an indoor rowing pool, but it’s something! I haven’t been on an erg in so long – it’s going to hurt, haha, but I’m still excited =)
My garden has been growing like crazy! I’ve already had a couple zucchini, super-chili peppers, cucumbers and this weekend the eggplant and cherry tomatoes will probably be ready to harvest! I’m so excited for my eggplant, it’s a Japanese type of eggplant that is skinny and has a thin skin – sounds tasty.
Remember me talking about Back to the Roots and the mushroom kit and AquaFarm? Well, I can’t remember either but they came and they’re awesome! This mushroom kit grows so many freaking mushrooms it’s amazing. It’s fast, easy and clean! You also get quite a bit of mushrooms out of just that one box. My AquaFarm is pretty cool too – it’s a self-cleaning fish tank. The fish feed the plants with it’s poo and the plants clean the water. I have a few seeds sprouting and my beta, named Reuben, loves how big it is. And it comes with 3 packets of free seeds from Seeds of Change. I just can’t wait to have kids so I can show all this fun stuff to them!
In as little as 10 days, you could be harvesting you’re own Oyster mushrooms! They grow FAST!
Saute them with some onions, chicken and wine and you have a delicious main course!
Anyway, that’s enough about me – I’ve got a delicious cucumber pickling recipe to share!
Anyone watch Portlandia? Check out this video…
My cucumber plant has been producing so many and I never know what to do with them. I asked Alex if he likes sweet pickles and I decided to make some of my own. My Gramma used to make deliciously sweet pickles when I was little. This is not the same recipe but it’s just as tasty. All I did was look at a few recipes online and added some spices that I’ve had with other things that were pickled in restaurants (I recently had pickled peaches and they were DE-LICIOUS). It’s really very simple – slice the cucumbers and pour everything else over it in a big jar. Doesn’t get easier than that!
Refrigerated Quick-Pickle Cucumbers
1 – 32oz. mason jar
3 small-medium cucumbers, sliced thin
1 medium-large shallot
3 small garlic cloves, peeled & whole
10 small allspice berries, whole
6 cloves, whole
1/2 cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp. mustard seeds, whole
6 Tbsp. sugar
3 Tbsp. Kosher salt
4 1/2 shot glasses (~6-7oz.) of distilled vinegar
- Wash cucumber. Take a fork and scrape long marks down the cucumber – all around it. Slice thin, then toss in the mason jar.
- Slice shallot and add to jar along with the garlic cloves.
- Add spices, sugar and salt.
- Add the vinegar then add cold water until everything is submerged.
- Give it a good SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE until the sugar and salt dissolves.
- Store in fridge for 24 hours before eating.
- Check on it every once in a while. If the cucumbers have absorbed some of the liquid you may need to add more vinegar (at least I had to).
I actually just made this yesterday so I haven’t tasted it yet. But, I did try the brine and it tasted like sweet-salty-tangy-vinegar… YUM! Also, I didn’t have a cinnamon stick on hand but if I did I would have added it. Maybe I’ll get some today and add it to the jar.
Interesting fact – The phrase “in a pickle” was first introduced by Shakespeare in his play, The Tempest. The quotes read, “How cam’st thou in this pickle?” and “I have been in such a pickle.”
Pickles are seriously one of my favorite snacks ever. My friend Kelly and I used to talk about how much we love pickles in high school, hahaha, weird, I know but that’s just how Mercy girls are.
Let me know what you think of these – and I’ll do the same!
What’s your favorite food to pickle?
What type of pickle do you prefer – dill or sweet?