Things have been getting seasonal ♫ Up in here. Up in here. ♫
Sorry, DMX has a way of slipping into my mental musings at the most inopportune times.
Somewhere between the ramps and the kohlrabi, I took a hard left and made a beeline for the farmers markets. In all honesty, I expect this trend to continue well into the summer and very likely even the Fall. With my CSA starting next week, it’s going to be all veggies, all the time, with a side of crazy thrown in for kicks. You know the usual around here. I do promise to keep an iota of decency on the blog though. Oh wait, we’re well past that stage in our relationship.
Speaking of our liaisons, I’d like to take things to the next level, assuming of course you’re good with that.
Here’s the thing: I want to be your Vegetable Girl, the one you call in the middle of the night, except not literally because I’m a sound sleeper, the one you look to for mystery produce guidance, the one who holds your hand, figuratively of course, as you embark on gardening with your camouflage thumbs in tow. They don’t always need to be green; certainly not in the beginning. We all gotta start somewhere.
As such, I’m going to be sharing tidbits of knowledge here on the blog, mostly produce related. Before I get to today’s life lesson though, I want to give a shout out to my mentor, the one who taught me everything I know, the one who answers my strange questions and potentially yours if and when you should stump me, the one who steered me towards purchasing a deep freezer, the one who taught me how to can tomatoes. In return, I give her granola and beer. Seems fair to me.
Say hello to Kirsten, my Veggie Guru. She is my Yoda, without the backwards sentences, and I’d like to be your Obi-Wan Kenobi, in better shoes that is; picture leopard print pumps. In return I’d ask you not to go all Anakin Skywalker on me. Dark and twisty daddy issues really aren’t my thing.
Cool, let’s talk CHIVES.
If you’re anything like me (God help us all), you’ve got a bundle of chives growing in a bucket in the backyard because this oniony herb rocks. Wait, you don’t have chives growing yet? No worries, you’ve got time. Do yourself a favor and pick up a starter plant at your local nursery. These guys are super easy to take care of and will happily spread like wildfire. In fact, they’ll take over everything, which is why I keep mine contained to a pot.
Chives are also perennials so they will make a repeat performance every year, creeping up from the soil and then hitting the scene in droves. They’ll last all summer long too if you care for them properly, which leads to me chive maintenance. The very best way to show them some love is to use them; often. The more you cut them back, the more they grow; just like stray eyebrow hairs. It’s magic. Or science. Or nature. Whatever.
The point is I’ve got some great suggestions for
WAYS TO USE CHIVES IN BULK
- Freezer Soup Packs: I keep a Ziploc bag in my freezer where I stockpile the leftover bits and bobs from veggies, herbs, and really good rinds of cheese. When the bag gets full, I use it to make Vegetable Stock. If you have no time to deal with your chives, yet want them to grow wild and care free, use them here.
- Chive Butter: mix together butter, a little olive oil and freshly diced chives to have a delicious herb butter on hand. It’s great on vegetables, meats, seafood and especially a big crusty loaf of bread. Make a ton, freeze some, pull it out at dinner parties and suddenly you’re the talk of the town; in a good way.
- Flavor Enhancers: toss freshly cut chives into all your savory dishes and salads. They’ll lend a subtle, yet crisp onion flavor. Add them at the very end of the cooking process or to your already finished plate.
- Decorative: in addition to being tasty, they make food look pretty, even green soup.
- Blue Cheese & Chive Drop Biscuits: these are quite simply everything.
They are melt in your mouth, wipe the drool off your face good. I’ll tell you right now, you want to make these in multiples. You can freeze the uncooked dough and set it aside for whenever you’re feeling frisky. I always make a double batch because I love being able to grab biscuits out of the freezer on a random night, when I’m not much feeling like cooking. I pair them with a giant salad or tasty bowl of soup to make it a full meal.
This concludes today’s lesson on biscuits and chives. So tell me, was it as good for you as it was for me?
- 2 cups flour
- 1 Tbsp. Baking Powder
- 1 tsp. Salt
- 1/4 tsp. Sugar
- 5 Tbsp. cold butter, cut into tablespoon sized pieces
- 1 1/4 cups Milk of Choice*
- 1/4 cup Blue Cheese, crumbled
- 1/4 cup fresh Chives, chopped
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Sift together flour, baking powder, salt and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add the 5 Tablespoons of cold butter to the mixture. Using a fork or pastry cutter, mash and turn the mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.
- Slowly stir in the milk and mix gently until the dough comes together. Do not over mix. Fold in the blue cheese and the chives.
- Drop the dough onto a greased baking sheet by the spoonful to make 12 biscuits. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until the biscuits are golden brown.
- *I've used soy and almond milk, although buttermilk would make these crazy fluffy.
- **To Freeze: prepare the dough for these biscuits, and drop them onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Instead of baking them, put them in the freezer overnight. Once frozen through, remove from cookie sheet, put in a freezer bag or container and store until ready for use. When ready, cook frozen biscuits at 400 degrees for 18 to 20 minutes. When I freeze mine, I write the name of the biscuits on the outside of the bag along with the baking instructions.