I always seem to perk up when I hear someone say this phrase because I know there is a 90% chance that they are talking about their garden.

I am so impressed by someone that can grow something as I cannot grow anything. If you have a plant that you want to send to a sudden death, give it to me, I believe that my thumb is any other color but green. I have tried to have a vegetable garden and I have tried to have a flower garden. After several attempts at both, I decided to have a rock garden decorated with different sizes and colors of rocks with a few little landscape trinkets thrown in just for fun. I have found that I cannot kill a rock.

My friends, Sue & Howard, have several different gardens. They have a full garden devoted to nothing but tomatoes, another devoted to nothing but squash and yet another full of corn. It's nothing for them to talk about “putting up 40 bags of corn” or “canning 60 pints of tomatoes”. I am amazed at the time and energy that is put into this process, from tilling up the ground to listening for that distinct “pop” of the canning jars sealing. Sue always says that if we ever have a disaster, they will not be without food to eat. More people believe that we should get back to this old-school way of living off the land because there may come a day when we do not have the convenience of just walking into a grocery store to buy the food items we need. One thing I do remember from history class is the teacher saying that “history always repeats itself.”

I have discovered that I have fallen in love with fresh corn. It does not matter if you just boil it in a pan of water or cut it off the cob and use it in a recipe, I am crazy about corn this summer.

For those of you that are talented enough and have the time to manage a garden, I salute you. And I love it when I see you coming with an armload of goodies. I may not be able to grow the veggies but I sure do love cooking and eating them.

Here are some wonderful summer corn recipes...

•2 cups mashed potatoes (prepared with milk and butter)
•1/4 cup all-purpose flour
•1/4 cup cooked fresh corn, cut from the cob
•1 small can green chilies
•1 egg, beaten
•3 tablespoons finely chopped onion
•1 teaspoon minced fresh parsley
•1/2 teaspoon salt
•1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
•1/8 teaspoon pepper
•3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
In a large bowl, combine the first nine ingredients. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil; drop four 1/4 cupfuls of batter into skillet. Cook for 1-2 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Repeat with remaining oil and batter.

•2 slices bacon
•1/2 cup thinly sliced shallots
•3 cups sliced mixed mushrooms, such as oyster, shiitake and/or baby bella
•4 ears corn, kernels cut from cob (see Tip)
•1/4 cup water
•1/4 teaspoon salt
•1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and chop. Discard all but 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat from the pan. Add shallots and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring, until they begin to release their juices, about 3 minutes more.  Add corn kernels and water and cook until the corn is tender-crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat; stir in chopped bacon and season with salt and pepper.

•2 cups well-cooked brown or pinto beans
•1 cup cooked brown rice
•1 cup cooked sweet corn
•3 cloves of garlic
•1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes
•1 cup loosely packed basil leaves
•1/2 tablespoon cumin
•1 teaspoon salt
•Freshly ground black pepper
•1 egg (optional)
•Asiago cheese rolls, for serving
In a large bowl combine the beans, rice, and corn. Mince the garlic, tomatoes, and basil and add along with the cumin and salt and pepper. Mix in the egg. Puree until chunky in a food processor, adding water or oil if too dry, or more brown rice if too wet.  Heat a heavy skillet over medium-high heat and add about 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil. Cook the veggie burger until well done and crispy on both sides - about 6 minutes each side. These tend to be quite moist, so check the first one inside before you remove it from the pan.
Next Week-Planting an Egg.

Remember......Life is short. Eat Dessert first!!

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