Friday, 9 September 2011
I love the tangled array of hues of the September garden. While the summer blooms bid farewell with the rattling of their leaves and seedpods, others are just making their first appearance. My brown-eyed-susans and false sunflowers are offering the most brilliant splash of yellow to my landscape. I always keep a fresh bouquet of them on our dining table this time of year, keenly aware that before long, they too will be gone.
When Hubby and I built out home, one of our very first landscaping efforts involved the planting of rugosa roses. I have a long-standing love of beach roses. As a young girl, I used to gather their delicate petals and sprinkle them in my drawers in an effort to perfume my nightgowns. They were not planted solely for their beauty and charm. We wanted something that would actually grow and thrive in this harsh coastal environment. These tough plants were pretty much a sure hit. Little did I know that once they finished blooming, they would offer another treat, to both the eyes and tastebuds. I love the vibrant speckling of red the rosehips add to my fall garden. Not only are they pretty to look at, but edible and healthy as well. A couple of years ago I tinkered with making rose hip jelly. I have to admit, it wasn't the tastiest and had a hard time competing with my homemade raspberry jam. I've found that the cleaned and de-seeded rosehips are put to better use in our morning smoothies and baking. De-seeding is an important step as the fuzzy seeds can be hard on the digestive track. I cut the hips in half and scoop the seeds out with my finger under running water. I've found this works really well. I then pop them in the freezer and add them to smoothies as I would any other berry. I've also added them to muffins, apple crips and cake - usually using them as I would slice apples.
Last weekend I spent some time both gathering and cleaning my hips, as I had grand plans to make a yummy rosehip cake. Chi-Chi was off to a birthday party, so I enlisted Muffy's assistance in the kitchen. Well, my sweet boy was so excited to be assigned baking duties with some one-on-one time with Mommy. As head chef, he called all the shots! That yummy rose hip cake I was dreaming of turned out to be an incredibly delicious chocolate zuchinni cake instead! I have to admit, I didn't protest. I popped the rosehips in the freezer! Who is going to refuse chocolate cake? And yes, the boy does dishes too!