Looks like I will be in the upcoming art show Bike Monsters, opening at two(adjacent) locations in Highland Park); Bike Oven and Flying Pigeon. Part of the proceeds of the sale of these pieces go to Bike Oven and the Bicycle Tree – two community non-profits to help folks get and repair their bikes.
Each gouache and ink piece is roughly 8×10″ They will probably be framed.
There is more information on the show here.
When a friend asked for my pickle recipe recently, it forced me into writing it down. I don’t really bother with recipes for pickles since I just keep a gallon jug of brine handy. It is very easy and you don’t need to dig up measuring spoons (which are always missing in my house) Ruhlman has a good section on brine in Ratio, but I learned this technique at Picklefest 2008. It has a lower salinity than Ruhlman suggests, but it works for me. As for the cucumbers, as many as will fit in your clean jar. It really pays to get some fresh produce here, if you can’t grow them, try a local farmer’s market. The smaller, the better; large ones have too many seeds and won’t fit in the jar, but I sometimes cut them up to fit. You can use pickling spice or I tend to make up something at pickling time. Use a reasonable amount.
Wash cucumbers well and slice off both ends since the blossom ends have a chemical that can cause softening. Place in a clean mason-type or spring-top jar, add spice, garlic, dill and brine to cover. Set on counter at room temperature, out of the sun. Twice daily or whenever you feel like it, “burp” the lid to release the gases. After a few days, the mixture will turn cloudy; You should taste a cuke and see how it is going. Depending on the temperature and various other factors like salinity, size and moisture content of cucumbers, etc, you should have a half-sour pickle by now, a little sour on the outside and still crisp and cucumbery in the middle. I like them like this so I put them in the fridge to slow everything down. They probably won’t last too long, they don’t at my house!
I have been having a pretty bad problem with pests on my rosemary and mint, two plants I thought wouldn’t have pest problems at all. I decided they are packed in too tightly and don’t get enough drainage or enough water, putting them in a vulnerable state. So, I put in new plants among the orange mums outside the garage, and covered it all with a few inches of mulch. The new location next to the hose should allow for more frequent watering, especially with family helping out to water.
This summer seemed to rush by in a blur of heat waves, fires, baby milestones, tomatoes, figs, and long hours at work. The garden is done for the season, and I’m already thinking about the beets and radishes of fall and winter.
I need to seriously rethink my irrigation system, as the drippers failed right before one of our San Gabriel Valley heat waves. The tomatoes largely survived, with the Pineapple from Territorial being a standout favorite. I don’t think I’ll grow the chocolate cherry grape tomato next year, since it took over the 32 sq. ft. veggie bed, climbing up the beanpoles and choking out the eggplant, cukes and squash.
I managed to put by a few pints of fig jam, and dried most of the tomatoes I didn’t eat fresh. I also harvested some dry beans to plant next year and kept some of the sunflower seeds. It isn’t enough to warrant roasting and salting, so maybe I’ll just leave it out for the birds.
My sister-in-law, Linda asked me to do a piece for an art show she is curating at Gallery Meltdown in Los Angeles. The title of the show, “A Murder of Crows, a Children’s Primer” is based on the funny names given to groups of animals, like a herd of cows, a gaggle of geese, etc. Here is the result, a small 3″ canvas. Not really what I wanted but what should I expect with 10+ years with no practice? Opening is October 3, 2009 6-9pm at Gallery Meltdown (in the back of Meltdown Comics- I had one of my first jobs here as a handyman.) You can find more info about the show and the other artists here.
We are lucky enough to know a few photographers, professional and otherwise. We spent the day with Bridie as she coaxed out some pretty amazing photos. The only problem was narrowing our selection of prints, which are very reasonably priced. We’re looking forward to our prints in the mail pretty soon. Here is a pretty cute photo of Olive on the front porch at the house.
I ran across these onions at the Halal Market the other day in West L.A. and I thought I would try out the pickled onions I saw on A Hunger Artist. They were the perfect size for a single quart jar. I cleaned and trimmed the onions, added some coriander, cloves, korean red pepper flake, mustard seed and some allspice and covered it all will some pre-made brine. It is easiest to pickle it directly in the quart jar, and ‘burp’ it periodically to realease the gases. A week later and I think they are almost ready.