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English peas with lemony pappardelle

Fresh English peas and lemony pappardelle

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English peas. When they start arriving at your farmers market, it’s one of the happiest signs of spring. Although peas get a bad rap from insominac Princesses, a happy family of peas in their cozy little pods is a friendly image in many children’s books. Many babies eat peas among their first solid foods, their unpracticed fingertips pinching each pea. Then, as we grow out of the hide-your-peas-under-the-mashed-potatoes phase, we pea-lovers find…

Garden with the ‘All-Stars’ during dry times

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As the growing season ramps up, visions of a luscious garden don’t evaporate simply because water is in short supply. Cultivating a landscape that’s considerate of our record drought doesn’t have to mean a yard covered in rocks. There are a number of beautiful flowering plants that thrive with minimal water. The UC Davis Arboretum offers a list of 100 “All-Stars” that are recommended for a drought-stricken California garden. It’s the…

California Quinoa Tabouli Salad

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Ever since I lived in Greece, tabouli has been one of my favorite salads. Tabouli, or tabbouleh, is commonly served throughout the Middle East as a starter or side dish. Traditionally, wheat bulgur forms the base of a simple tabouli, since it was readily available in Syria and Lebanon where the dish originated. The wheat formed a hearty base for a filling main dish where meat was scarce, so it’s…

'Strawberries and onions newly planted' CC BY-SA 2.0 Korye Logan

Easy square foot gardens offer abundance, variety in small spaces

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If you’re new to gardening, you’d likely prefer to start small. Which is why many people begin their gardening experience in containers that they can easily inspect and maintain. Once you’re confident that you won’t kill off every single plant immediately — especially if you’ve had the pleasure of eating your own fresh-picked produce — you’ll probably want more. It just happens that way. You’ve been bitten by the gardening bug. So…