The Backyard Produce Section and Weekend Cooking

I want to start off this post by saying that if anyone ever wants to join me in posting about their own gardening and their own “backyard produce section” please do!! I’m not going to turn this into an official meme with a mr. linky and all because let’s face it, we don’t need another planned weekly post :p But I’m a total voyeur when it comes to pics of people’s gardens! And I’d love to see what other people are up to in their gardening and growing stuff and what you’re making with it and how it’s all progressing and if you have any useful tips! It’s not necessarily a bookish thing, but it’s fun nonetheless…so please join along whenever you’d like and drop me a note if you do!

So the garden is starting to come alive like crazy now 😀 Not that it’s loaded with vegetables ready to pick or anything, but there are signs of lots of new growth and veggies a plenty to come. Just this week I’ve picked three tomatoes! And have scarfed down one already which was absolutely delicious. I’m saving the other one two to make some fresh salsa with tomorrow with a little cilantro, lime juice and onion. I’ve tied the beans to their posts, spotted TONS of flowers on my two tomato plants, noticed that the eggplant that I was about to give up on is finally growing, spotted two bell peppers and I have little baby cucumbers growing like crazy!! Look how cute they are 😀

And of course, never being happy with just doing something as it is, I decided to go Etsy shopping this past week for gardening stuff :p The first thing I bought was a journal to start keeping a daily log of what goes on in the garden so that I can look back next year on what worked and what didn’t work. I also picked up some seeds from a fantastic seller that sells lots of heirloom seeds. She threw in some free hollyhocks too!! This round, I got some eggplant, carrots, cucumbers, jalapenos, and green beans. And I think my favorite find of all are these really cool antique hammered out spoons that I got from this great seller. I bought one for my cherry tomatoes, parsley, mint and lavender. Here’s a pic of the cherry tomatoes (no tomatoes yet…this is a new plant):

How’s everyone else’s garden doing these days? In the south, you can pretty much plant a garden and have it do well year round :p But I know it’s not like that everywhere.


This is my first time EVER doing Beth Fish’s AMAZING Weekend Cooking 🙂 Mostly because I rarely cook, but since reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver (everyone should read this book) I’ve got the fresh produce cooking bug! I found this recipe just the other day through Craftzine’s site which led me to a blog called Bless Her Heart. The recipe is for Blackberry Buckle and it’s so easy to make. Words cannot describe how absolutely amazing this is…seriously, give me a spoon and I could eat the whole thing. My picture is not nearly as beautiful as the one over at Bless Her Heart. This is what mine came out looking like:

Here’s the recipe for it…..I’m just going to copy and paste the directions from Bless Her Heart as those are perfect!

Blackberry Buckle

Fruit Topping:

4 Cups of Fresh Blackberries

1 1/2 tbsp granulated sugar

1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract


6 tbsp butter

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 tsp baking powder

pinch of salt

1/8 tsp ground cinnamon

1 cup of milk

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/2 tbsp coarse or turbinado sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  In a small bowl, combine the first four ingredients in the Fruit Filling section and set aside.  Place the butter In a 2 quart baking dish and place it in the oven to melt the butter. In a medium bowl combine the flour, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.  In a small bowl combine the milk and vanilla.  Add this mixture to the flour mixture.  Mix until moist.  Remove the baking dish from the oven.  Spread the batter on top of the butter.  The melted butter will peek up around the edges a bit.  Layer the blackberry mix on top of the batter.  Press the blackberries down into the batter a bit.  Bake for 45 minutes.  Sprinkle with the coarse sugar and bake for 5-10 more minutes or until the batter has reached a beautiful golden brown.

Enjoy 😀 Have you cooked anything good lately? Tell me about it! Planted anything cool lately? Tell me about that too! I want to try some new stuff out in the garden. Or in pots….yeah…know anything that does really well in pots?


16 Responses

  1. Is your garden all in pots? I have three reaised beds for vegetables myself. I’d just about given up on the whole thing because the last two years produced so little. This year I bought seeds from a catalogue and fertalized like made. The results are fantastic. We’re already eating the lettuce, the squash are huge, the snow peas are doing great and there are already several green tomatoes on the vine. It could be all the rain we’ve been getting this year.

  2. I love the little spoon tags! very cool. This morning i found a tomato growing on one of my plants so i’ve accomplished something. Does it count as cooking if it’s salad? I made a salad of kale, tomatoes, strawberries and pine nuts, drizzled some olive oil and lemon juice and dashed on salt and pepper. yummy!

  3. Your plants look great! Unfortunately my strawberry popcorn hasn’t grown much. I think I may need a bigger pot.Luckily my black cumin is growing so nicely! I can’t wait to cut some off to taste. There’s something about growing your own food that is so relaxing, so fulfilling.

  4. ok it’s official .. we need to start calling you “Nature Boy” !!!

    The garden is doing great! (hope that garlic spray is helping) and those baby cucumbers will be ready to eat before you know it!!

    my son the Desert Chef!! mmmmmmm that looks yummy! we need mom to take a pic of you with blackberry stuff around your mouth! lol…

  5. CB, Hey! How are you? No, not everything’s in pots. As far as pots go, I just have herbs, strawberries and a cherry tomato. Then I have a raised bed with cukes, peppers, jalapenos, okra and eggplant and a separate bean garden with two tomato plants added. I’m totally loving it! I just bought a bunch of seeds myself and plan on doing everything from seed next go round. I did my beans from seed this year and they’re doing fantastic! Your garden sounds awesome 😀

    Mel, Aren’t they cool? 😀 Yay for tomatoes on the plant! I get so excited when I see a new one :p Your salad sounds so delicious!!

    Vasilly, My strawberries aren’t doing too good right now either…I think I have a raccoon who’s eating them 😦 I’ll have some really nice looking ones and I’ll want to leave them on there for just another day or two and the next morning, they’re gone! Mmmm…the cumin sounds good! Growing your own food is perfectly relaxing 🙂 Good way to put it!

    Deslily, Hahaha! Nature Boy! I love it :p The garlic spray really is helping! And I’m noticing that those little baby cucumbers are growing pretty quick. And that they’re going to produce a lot! OMG Pat, the blackberry crumble was so good!! And you crack me up because I totally thought of taking a picture of myself with blackberries all over my mouth :p

  6. LOL…I almost asked you if that was the recipe you’d used for your blackberry buckle. I’d already bookmarked that recipe, too! Glad to hear it’s as delicious as it looks! 😀

    Hope you’re not getting tire of me saying it, but I love these posts! 😀

  7. OMG that blackberry buckle looks so good. I was just looking at our plants yesterday and they are full of flowers. Just as soon as I get fruit, I’m making this. Heaven in a spoon.

    Talking of spoons, I love those markers. How cute are they? Very clever way of recycling.

    I’m so jealous that you have tomatoes! I have eaten fresh cilantro, lettuce, beet greens, and radishes. Can’t wait to see what’s at the farmers market and in our CSA basket this week.

  8. I like taking photos of the plants so much I have a separate blog just for my garden. It’s also the journal of what happens (as I can search in it, and I knew if it was in a handwritten journal I’d never find my entries again easily). I just took a picture of our first little broccoli today.

    That recipe looks delicious. I’ve seen/eaten stuff like it before, but we called it cobbler. That’s the same as buckle, right?

  9. LOL..when I saw the picture and read what you wrote about eating it all the picture of Abbercorn eating the bubbly pie and getting it on his face fashed in my mind lol…so i really thought that would be a fun photo h ahahaha… glad you thought of it too !!!! (have mom snap a shot of ya lol)

  10. What beautiful photos! I love that you’ve started your own garden and that you’re inspiring other to talk about it, especially in light of what is going on in Louisiana and the Gulf.

    I’ve only got herbs in my garden, but I hope to change that next summer. In the meantime, I shop only farmer’s markets and I don’t eat meat (goodness gracious, check out just what our meat industry is like – I’d really recommend Foer’s book Eating Animals).

    I can’t wait to see more of your photos. Especially if they’re as delicious looking as that pie!

  11. I think your buckle looks very delicious!! I love looking at others photos too!! Great job on your project!

  12. Mmm that looks so good!

  13. I posted a photo of our tomatoes, just for you, Chris.

  14. Debi, Oh good!! I’m glad you bookmarked the recipe! It’s so good! And so easy! And SO delicious 😀 Glad you’re still enjoying the posts 🙂 I get worried people will get sick of them, but I’ll still keep doing them for my own benefit :p

    Beth F, OMG it’s incredible. I can’t wait until you try it. I was amazed by how good it came out. And it had nothing to do with me, it’s all the recipe’s fault :p Aren’t those spoons awesome??? I want to get one of them for everything now, lol. I used some cilantro just yesterday to make some fresh pico and it was to die for! delicious! I so wish we had a CSA here 😦 But I can’t find one.

    Jeane, OMG that’s so cool!! I didn’t know you had a garden blog!! I’m subscribing 😀 This recipe is a little different than cobbler in that it’s more cakey…most cobbler that I’ve had is more crumbly.

    Deslily, I haven’t been quite that messy when eating it, but I’m SO tempted to just shove my face in the pan and gobble it up :p

    Selena, The oil spill is pretty much what has me wanting to do more and MORE of my own gardening! I’m glad it has others wanting to do their own stuff too 🙂 I have Eating Animals on my shelf right now and I certainly plan on reading it sooner than later. I know it’s a horrible industry 😦 The blackberry stuff was so good! You should totally try it out!

    Staci, thanks!! You should try the recipe out! It’s so good!

    Amanda, It is! I wish I could send you a piece :p

    Nancy, I saw it last night and wanted to comment but I was reading on my phone and was too lazy to get my computer back out :p But I just got around to commenting!! Absolutely love the picture!! They look delicious already!

  15. Ever since I started reading your Backyard Produce Section posts, my own vigor for gardening and fresh stuff has skyrocketed! We planted green bell and sweet banana peppers on our patio yesterday. We also filled our herb garden with basil, parsley, cilantro, dill, sage, mint, and a serrano pepper plant. Everything is looking perky, and we’ve already pulled two banana peppers with lots more waiting in the wings. We invested in some Earth-friendly bug spray (insect soap spray), and we bought a hanging tomato plant.

    I can’t wait for things to really start growing! I’m also going to dig up a small plot outside our fence (back corner of our complext) and plant some squash. Just hoping the lawn care service doesn’t mow them!

  16. I love seeing the pics and reading your gardening updates, especially as we are not doing one. I can live vicariously through you while hitting the local farmers market for fresh fruits and veggies. I love the food this time of year. Keep it up, I’m thrilled with the fun you are having.

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