Marti’s Corner – 78

August 08, 2022

Marti's Corner at City PreppingHi Everyone,


*  Well, my email from last week was censored by Facebook.  Hahahaha.  THAT’S what happens when you talk about gardening and buying food!  Sheesh.

*  (Can I just say that doing dishes is one of my least favorite things to do!)  (Complaining done) (For now)

*  Saw this on FB today:

Beef Prices About to SurgeSooooo…… you can learn to can beef and then do so soon.  OR you can buy freeze-dried beef from a dealer, OR you can buy some canned goods with meat in them like chili and stew, OR you can just eat chicken.  But I think even chicken prices will go up.  Start learning to cook some vegetarian meals:  split pea soup, macaroni and cheese, etc.



My garden is really struggling with the heat and bugs and powdery mildew!  This is what my zucchini and squash look like:

Lame zucchinni

Zucchini is supposed to be so easy to grow.  I have NEVER had good luck with it.  I really think it’s the heat.

powdery mildew increase because of weather

I have eight pumpkin plants, 4 each in ten-gallon containers.  No pumpkins.  Only dead leaves.  LOL, I DID have three baby pumpkins, and they died a premature death.  I have kept them shaded with shade cloth, and today I uncovered them.  Let’s see how they do in the sun.  They are full of powdery mildew.  So I sprayed, and now they can be in the wind for a few days.  

I dusted the spider mites with DE, left it for 2 days, and came back to this:

spider mitesReally?  They just made their webs right on top of the DE!!!  I’m going with DE does NOT kill spider mites!

My beans were covered with white dust, then webs on top of that.  It looked like a spooky Halloween plant.  The web is huge!

I got out there today with scissors and cut out a bunch of stuff.  The beans that are still hanging in there are NOT growing and some are dying.  But I’m not giving up.  I sprayed with Neem oil today.  

BUT…. it’s not too late.  I replanted beets, carrots and tomatoes this week.  From seed.  The tomatoes are 72 days to harvest.  That means I’ll be harvesting tomatoes the middle of October.  Perfect. 

THIS WEEK’S PURCHASE: meat 10 pounds

At Winco, you can still get 85% lean ground beef for under $4 if you buy the 10-pound chubs.
OR chicken that you can freeze, or canned chicken.
OR cans of tuna

MISC PURCHASE: Tylenol – or pain reliever of your choice

I can’t take Ibuprofen.  So acetamini…. blah blah it is for me.  If you see me on FB, you’ll know I went to take some Tylenol the other day for dental pain and realized I was going to need a MUCH bigger bottle to get me through what’s coming!  No time like the present to stock up.

Look what I found!!  Home | free frugal food storage help

I made this recipe just two days ago.  It calls for bacon and I thought I had some but then couldn’t find it in the fridge.  THEN, I remembered that I had some canned bacon.  Yep, I canned some bacon back in 2015.  If I could only remember where it was.  So, I started searching under beds and in closets.  (It would have been faster to just go to the store and buy more bacon.)  But I found a jar someplace.  When the bacon has been canned, it is fully cooked, but not crunchy and kind of a weird texture.  So I took out 4-5 pieces and put them in a frying pan to continue frying.  I added the rest of the ingredients.  I like this recipe because you can use any type of chicken:  thighs, legs, whatever.  I used skin on, bone in thighs (they seem to be less expensive).  Not only did Craig like it, but he ate the rest of the chicken the next day.  Heh, heh, heh.  

1/2 lb. bacon (I used 4-5 pieces) – brown in frying pan
1-2 TB dehydrated onion (rehydrated) OR 1/2 fresh onion chopped
Add to the bacon and sauté
Drain bacon grease
4 scallions, snip in
1 lb. chicken (can use boneless, skinless chicken cut in chunks, breasts with bone and skin, or thighs, or whatever you can get on sale)   I used 3 thighs.
1/2 tsp celery salt
1/2 c. white wine (yes, I cook with wine, but if it makes you uncomfortable, use chicken broth)
1 can chopped tomatoes undrained
1/2 tsp sugar (is this really necessary?  who knows, just put it in)
2 bay leaves (didn’t have any and left it out)
1 tsp fresh rosemary (1/4 tsp dry)
    Bring to boil.   Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes.
1 can cantaloni beans (I just use any type of small white beans) – rinsed

Heat through 5-10 more minutes.

Bean N’ Bacon Soup
I saw this and thought, “Hey, I have leftover bacon from the recipe above!”   So, here goes:

Soak 1 c. dry white beans overnight.  (IF you forget – and I do all the time – just boil the beans in some water in the morning, turn the stove off, and let the beans sit till afternoon.  1 c. dry beans = 3 c. cooked beans.  So, this will serve 3-4 easily.

Drain off that water.  Add fresh water to cover beans plus 1 inch.

To the soaked/watery beans, add:
1-2 tsp dried parsley
small bay leaf (optional)
4 TB dried chopped onion – if you don’t have dried, use fresh.
2 TB dried carrots (or 1-2 diced fresh carrots)
1 TB dried celery (this is the ONLY way to use celery, but if you don’t have dried, use fresh)
1-2 TB butter (optional — who doesn’t want butter in their soup???)
bacon bits to taste (about 1/4 c.)  Doesn’t REAL bacon sound good here???
More water as needed or chicken broth.

Bring to a rolling boil, turn heat to low, cover, and simmer for 30 min.  Salt and pepper to taste.  You can take out part of the soup, mash, then add it back in to thicken the broth.

Hush Puppies
I had a very good friend and neighbor from Georgia when my kids were young.  That was the first time I had ever had hush puppies.  IF you have never tried them, you are missing a wonderful treat.  They would go really well with the soup.

If you google the recipe, you will find lots of variations.  Want spicy?  Want extra sweet?  There are a lot to try.
3/4 c. flour
3/4 c. cornmeal
1 TB sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder (I seem to recall that we just used real onions chopped fine.  Whatever)
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp pepper
    Mix dry ingredients
1 egg
1 c. buttermilk
    Add these and stir till combined.
4 TB (1/2 stick) butter cut in small cubes

    Add butter.  Drop the batter by rounded teaspoons in hot oil.  I use a saucepan.  If the oil is too hot, they will darken on the outside but still be uncooked on the inside.  365˚ works well.  After one side browns, you have to turn them over.  Remove with a metal strainer on a paper towel-lined plate.

This recipe uses fresh onion and no butter:

Hush Puppies (With Crispy Edges and Soft Centers)

Please be vigilant.  I think we are in for some hard times.  I know food prices are high.  Look for things that are on sale.  If you don’t make this a priority, you will never have enough money.


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1 year ago

The hushpuppies I liked the best were made with tiny bits of fish in them, and also cooked in the same oil as fish. I was a kid in the 80’s and I still remember how good they were, especially when I’m having hushpuppies. I can’t help but compare them against each other in my mind. To this day, I have only heard of one other place that did this, with finely minced shrimp instead of minced fish.

Diane Elmore
Diane Elmore
1 year ago

Hi Marti, I am in Yucaipa and I am having the same problem as you! Squash won’t begin, though I am watering 3 squash tubs with no fruit all summer, and the same bugs…ridiculous. I follow Robbie & Gary on UTube. They live in Riverside. She always has squash and a whole mass of stuff. She is known for tub/container gardening.

A Gardener
A Gardener
1 year ago

If you are having trouble with spider mites, don’t rely on insecticides!!! They don’t work well for killing the bad things, only for killing beneficial insects, and they also put literal poison onto your food @_@ Tried and true method for gardeners (and myself) is some Neem oil, diluted as per instructions, with a little castille soap (or gentle dishwashing liquid), spray every 2nd day until they are gone. 1-2 treatments is usually all I need, rarely 3. It is also brilliant for aphids and other things I can’t identify. Make sure you spray thoroughly, especially the underside of the… Read more »

Last edited 1 year ago by A Gardener

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