Sunday, August 14, 2016

cucumber salad and ginger beer

I often describe the weather, because it plays a major role in my ordinary life.
But complain? No. What could be more pointless?

There are times, though, when just describing something can sound very much like complaining, so I think I'll not write about the weather at all right now!

A goat note:

I want to thank my readers who have sent good wishes about my poorly goats. Campion is back to his usual self, which is a huge relief. The digestive system of a goat is a lot more sensitive than we are led to believe by the cartoon goat eating tin cans. It is critical that the system remains active, and a goat not eating at all is a goat heading for a dangerous situation. Happily, Campion's digestive system is very, very active again :)

Tansy (left) and mama Tsuga, in front of the fan

Tansy's lameness is a mystery. She is slightly favoring her near fore, and I can't even determine if the discomfort is from the foot, leg, or shoulder - when I gently examine her, she doesn't react as if any point or any movement is painful.
We are now soaking her entire leg, from hoof to elbow, in a warm epsom salt bath for 20 minutes daily, and I'll tell you what: this is a perfect example of why I take the time to collar and tie my goats for their daily feed buckets. No goat wants to keep a leg in water for even 20 seconds. If simply being tied was also an unfamiliar thing, the entire experience would be that much more stressful for the animal. For both animals involved, really. As it is, Tansy is being very good, and we are having long, quiet conversations about exactly how good she is.

I am hopeful the soak is helping. It's certainly not hurting.

summer menu 2016:

Ever since my cucumber plants began producing, there's been a quart jar of cucumber salad chilling in the fridge. It started with my blog-friend Tipper's post about cucumber salad, and the helpful comments her readers left with their own favorite recipes. 

I've enjoyed cucumber salad for breakfast, lunch, supper, and insomniac snacks. By itself, or with cold tuna added, or with a few cubes of very sharp cheddar on the side. First, I made it with the Suyo Long cucumbers from Sow True Seeds, which, coincidentally, Tipper sent me back in the Spring. Thanks, Tipper!

Suyo Long

The current batch was made with a combination of Suyo and Poona Kheera; the Indian cucumbers grown from leftover seed (I just checked: the seed was from 2013!) planted for the heck of it and now producing madly.

 Poona Kheera start out green and yellow, then turn beautiful shades of brown:

I haven't yet figured out the ideal stage at which to harvest them. But as with summer squash, if I let cucumbers grow so long they develop tough seeds, it's the work of a moment to scoop out the core and present it to the delighted chickens. And both Suyo and Poona Kheera have lovely edible skins - no peeling, extra texture, and not a bitter bite so far.

Pretty tasty!

The other staple of summer 2016?
Ginger beer.
Fever Tree, when possible.
With ice.

I drink water all day long anyway, but many afternoons this summer I've enjoyed a cold glass of ginger beer. So refreshing!
It's the little things that help us along, isn't it?

What are your favorite foods and beverages to help you through seasons of unspeakable weather?