Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Muffins in May? Is that odd? Since zucchini will soon be in abundance I thought I would be prepared with a few great recipes.

This recipe comes from the June 2009 issue of Cooking Light magazine. I added walnuts since I like a little crunch in my muffins, and zucchini and walnuts are a good combination. I also mixed in the little tiny bits of walnut dust with the cinnamon and sugar sprinkling it on top of the unbaked muffins. Mmmm, good.

Can't tell you if they freeze well since they didn't last long.

4.75 ounces whole-wheat flour (about 1 cup)
3 ounces all-purpose flour (about 2/3 cup)
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups shredded zucchini
1/2 cup fat-free milk
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons honey
1 large egg
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1. Preheat oven to 400°.
2. Weigh or lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine whole-wheat flour and next 6 ingredients (through salt) in a large bowl; stir with a whisk. Combine zucchini, milk, oil, honey, and egg in a small bowl; stir until blended. Make a well in center of flour mixture; add milk mixture, stirring just until moist. Spoon batter into 12 muffin cups coated with cooking spray.
3. Combine 1 tablespoon sugar and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon; sprinkle over tops of muffins. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes or until golden. Remove from pans immediately; cool on a wire rack.


Monday, May 10, 2010

May Groundwork

It seems as though spring has had a hard time leaving us this year. That's ok with me, but my tomatoes and peppers are having a hard time adjusting to the fluctuating temperatures! With this fair weather and a little digging, a vegetable garden becomes a family affair. Fast growing choices for kids might include: patty pan squash, cantaloupes, watermelon, and armenian cucumbers. Of course, the summer isn't summer without sitting in the shade of a sunflower house. (Plant sunflower seeds in a circle). Hopefully, cherry tomatoes were planted earlier in the season and are ready for little hands to pick while meandering in the garden. Here's the list of things to do for the month of May.

Continue to plant warm season vegetables, flowers, container fruit trees and citrus trees.

Transplant basil, garlic chives, lemon grass, oregano and mint.

Warm weather flowers include, marigolds, purslane, portulaca, sweet alyssum, scented geranium, zinnia, verbena and sunflower.

Citrus trees need to be fertilized, always water thoroughly before adding fertilizer.

As weather warms, increase your watering. Water deeply and slowly, but infrequently. Don't let soil get bone dry though. Check and reprogram water systems.

Add mulch, straw or compost around the base of each plant to help retain moisture.

Deciduous fruit trees should be thinned so fruit is 4 to 6 inches apart. (Just keep thinning! )Be prepared with bird netting and ladders as fruit ripens. Place netting before fruit is ripe! Another method is to pick the fruit before it's ripe and let it ripen indoors in brown paper bags. Water trees deeply to a depth of three feet every 7 to 10 days to provide moisture as fruit size increases.

Have shade cloth on hand to cover tomatoes as temps rise to the 95 to 100 degree range. Gently shake stems early in the morning to help pollination tomato flowers.

Feed roses every two weeks during their peak bloom season. Water deeply to 18 inches.

Harvest onions, garlic and chives.

Enjoy the merry, merry month of May!