Breakfast · Dessert · In the Garden · Lunch

Spring is officially under way πŸ‘ Peach and Blueberry Season and the many things we love to make with them.

I love spring πŸ’š I love when everything starts to shoot up. The garden looks beautiful, flowers popping with colour, herbs are enormous and the Peach tree is in bloom. Not much more could make me happier. Until I discovered all of this on a much grander scale.

One of the best parts of living over in Clermont is being surrounded by the various farms, orchards and groves we have here. Every where you turn you can spot citrus groves here. But two of the lesser know orchards near me grow Blueberries and Peaches. And oh how stunning they are.

Honestly. I could wander round these farms all day snapping various photos. And the fruit is second to none. April and May are the season for them, and I like to go a few times to stock up.

The peaches here are a much smaller variety, but they hold their own on flavour. Love wandering around with my little bucket picking to my hearts content. If you’ve never been fruit picking or been to a real orchard I’d highly recommend. Its surprisingly therapeutic.

Having filled our little buckets off home for some delicious snacks for the week.

If you’ve been reading a while you’ll know my obsession with cooking things together that have the same growing season. That age old saying of “if it grows together it goes together” does ring true. And Peach and blueberries are a little match made in heaven.

And here are some ideas I’ve put together over the years with this beautiful flavour combination.

https://thelittlebluegarden.com/2017/08/21/lazy-sunday-night-in-at-its-best-πŸ’›-peach-and-blueberry-crumble/

And let’s not forget our breakfast options either :

https://thelittlebluegarden.com/2016/05/23/seriously-seedy-grain-free-porridge/

Or more recently some smoothie options πŸ’›

I adore this smoothie. And it’s been my goto lunch lately. Love a quick blast from a blender and lunch being served.

This recipe makes 2 smoothie bowls.

Recipe :

4 Little Peaches

2 Bananas

1 Cup Frozen Mango

Almond milk

Add everything to the blender and almond milk to desired consistency, I like smoothies thicker in a bowl but thinner in a glass. Go figure that one out…

Top happily with a good handful of blueberries and granola and any seeds you’d like πŸ’›

Don’t forget our Peach and Blueberry Pie recipe on page 70 of the book.

I hope you’re enjoying spring and all of the flavours it brings as much as I am.

Sending you love from The Little Blue Garden.

Enjoy !!

In the Garden · Lunch · Picnic

Edible Blooms and how to use them. πŸ’›Spring is on the way πŸ’›

I don’t know about you. But I am all set for light nights, longer days and some warmth πŸ’› I feel like Florida really attempted to have a winter this year. May I just say, that is not why I moved here… I did not sign up for this. Sunshine State. Come on. Sort it out. But now that the clocks have changed and it’s not dark by dinner time I feel we are finally getting somewhere. And Spring is on its way πŸ’› my favorite time of year.

To celebrate this beautiful shift of the seasons, I’ve been back in the garden making it beautiful and focusing my attention on edible blooms. Those who know me know I love adding flowers to anything and everything. And have a penchant for drying flowers out too… (I’ve been questioned several times as to why I keep bouquets after they have died). And so edible flowers with flavours and colours are just my idea of heaven. It’s been a little ridiculous to be fair. I’m putting them here there and everywhere and it makes me so happy πŸ’›

The edible blooms I’ve been growing and buying (thank you The Farmacy) are Pansy, Marigold, Lavender, Nasturtium and Society Garlic. They just make everything look so inviting and pretty. And have been so easy to grow and enjoy. I hope you love them as much as I do. Most -bar the garlic have a mild, sometimes a little peppery flavour just like a salad leaf.

Just remember you can’t just start munching any flowers from the garden section, they need to be organic, not sprayed with chemicals and fertilizers. Which is why it’s best to try an grow your own πŸ’›

Recipe above : Spring time salad with edible flowers.

This made two bowls :

1 Large head of Romaine

1 Slice of Watermelon diced

1/2 Bell Pepper sliced

1 Cup Mandarin segments

1 Cup Peas ( I used frozen – defrosted)

A few springs of mint – separated.

Assorted edible flowers

Dressing:

Juice of a lemon

2-3 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive oil

A few sprigs of mint.

Pinch of salt.

Give everything fresh a good wash and pop all ingredients into a bowl.

For the dressing I like to give the mint leaves a good squash with a pestle and mortar just to relased some of the oils, then add lemon juice and oil. Give a good mix together and fish the rather beaten up mint back out. Season to taste and lightly dress the salad.

Another of my favourites lately is to pop the more herb like flowers into flavoured waters or lemonades. Lemon Lavender and mint is a sound favourite currently. πŸ’›

Or you know Cupcakes are never a bad move. So pretty. So natural πŸ’› Recipe coming soon for PB&J Cupcakes.

And finally I made this last weekend it’s an old faithful from the blog. Find the recipe here…

https://thelittlebluegarden.com/2017/03/01/some-days-you-just-need-a-cake-and-cuppa-butternut-squash-and-raisin-cake-with-orange-and-vanilla-bean-frosting/

I just think cakes decorated with real beautiful flowers are one of my all time favourite things. Just naturally stunning with no added artificial colours or flavours. I’m just in love with my little Nasturtiums. I urge you to give these little beauties a try, go outside and get growing. I promise you a garden is a gift that just keeps giving πŸ’›.

In the Garden

Late Spring in the Little Blue Garden!

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This as my absolute favourite time of year. When the warm weather is well on its way and the Garden jusy springs into life ! The Peach tree looks amazing and the fruits just starting to blush. It’s just such a wonderful thing to watch. Walking round the tree spotting the different size shapes and colours on the many many fruit. Makes me so happy. Nature really is a beautiful thing.

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The Blueberry Bushes aren’t one to be outdone mind and are all starting to develop a wonderful powder blue hue ready to darken and sweeten.Β  I love how happy and colourful the whole place is at this time.

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Our little veggie section is looking cute too with some beautiful mini Yellow tomatoes. The plant isn’t very big but it’s laden with lots of flowers and fruit. Super proud of this little beauty.

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I have a lovely Pepper coming through and I’m excited to see what colour it turns (thanks to not remembering what colour I planted …I’ll have a lovely suprise ).

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Some beautiful flowers on the Watermelon Plants and the Courgette plants have me excited too!!

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And last but not least… my gorgoeus Dwarf Pomegranate bush has some wonderful little blooms coming up … keeping my fingers crossed for some flowers and fruit over Summer !

In the Garden · Lunch · Uncategorized

Goodness Gracious Greens. Garlic Greens and Mushrooms on Toast.

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Wanted to do something with the abundance of greens I currently have growing in the garden. They looked so bright and healthy I really wanted something that just focused on them.

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How cute are they ?!?
They’re incredibly easy to grow too. And let’s face it, we all could do with a few more greens in our lives.

Sorry.

Food.

Ok so this recipe is just so wonderfully simple and rustic. Hope you like it.

Recipe :
Handful of fresh greens (soft ones , I used Chard and Baby Kale )
Mushrooms
2 Cloves of garlic
Oil (Β  I used Olive )
Lemon

Toast.
Optional : Extra Virgin Olive oil to finish.

Chop 1 Clove of Garlic and your Mushrooms while you gently heat a little non stick pan. Once the pan is warm, add a Splash of Oil, the Garlic and the Mushrooms. Let them all get on together while you chop your greens.

Once your Mushrooms have a little colour, add your greens and gentley sautΓ© while you pop your Bread in the Toaster.

Once your bread is toasted and still warm , chop your final Garlic clove in half , and give the bread a little rub with the Garlic.

By now your greens should be good to go. Give them a little spritz with theΒ  LemonΒ  and pile them high on your Toast.Β  You can add an extra drizzle of some yummy Extra Virgin olive oil if you like. And a pinch of salt.

In the Garden

Spring time in The Little Blue Garden.

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Do you see that little furry green ball of cuteness ? Well that little cutey is my first Peach of the season on the tree I am absolutely in love with my Garden right now. Spring is upon us !

The Garden is a hive of activity right now. We have blossoms all over the Peach tree and blueberry bush… both of thier picking seasons happen roughly in May in Florida. And the place smells amazing. I’m pretty lucky to live close to a Blueberry fieldΒ  and Peach orchard and one of my favorite things in the world is to go and pick them !

 

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And in the raised beds we have Rainbow Chard and Baby Kale , both so easy to grown and so much colour ! I cannot wait for these to get a little bigger ! The Kale will need to be spaced out a little more and re planted but for now it’s quite happy just where it is.

We have a baby heirloom Tomato plant just starting to grow happily too.

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It’s such a lovely process watching things grow. I’ve just planted Fennel and Watercress too, I’ll keep you posted on those.

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I like to keep everything as organic as possible , no nasties sprayed on , but it does mean that I get to share my produce with bugs and wildlife ! So far no bite marks out of anything …yet.

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Welcome to my Little Blue Garden !

Breakfast · In the Garden · Uncategorized

Farmers Markets and Fruit Salads !

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Ok so this one isn’t a recipe as such. But just fun ways of making the best from fresh local produce. I really really belive in supporting local businesses. I know it’s more convienent to pop into a shop and grab a load of goodies all in one place. But venture out into your local farmers markets, or order a produce box from a local farm or Greengrocer. I promise you you won’t be disappointed. You might even save yourself a few pennies too. Go see them, be inspired !

Having things fresh and organic is not only delicious but beautiful too.

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Just a simple pate full of colours and flavors will brighten up anyone’s mood.

Or even go one step further and plant a few seeds ! It’s so rewarding watching things blossom and grow. I grew this beautiful Papaya seed from a tiny little seed. I lost count of how much fruit it gave me. I’m the garden currently I have a new Starfruit tree and a Peach tree covered in blossoms. It makes me so happy to go out there each morning.
This year I’m pretty eager to plant some edible flowers ! I feel some pretty Salads coming my way this Spring πŸ™‚

In the photo at the top Recipe :

Made two portions as above

1 Ripe Papaya
2 Ripe Mangos
1 Cup full of Blue Berries
Sprinkle of Pumpkin seeds
Topped with fresh Basil and Mint!