Battle Squirrel…

September 2, 2009  •  Technique

Let me just tell you right up front that Battle Squirrel is definitely NOT a new cooking challenge that I’ve signed up for. Rather, it’s my personal yard battle against those little creatures. Remember those gorgeous plums growing in my front yard? We’ll I’ve been taste testing them every few days since early August and finally this week they are sweet, soft and ready to eat! Seems the squirrels figured that out too and, when I went outside to pick this bowlful for a recipe I had to chase the squirrels away before I could harvest. $#%@&#!
Check back tomorrow to see what I made from this gorgeous bowl of Italian plums. In the meantime, I thought I’d share a couple of tips with you.

If you have green peppers growing in your garden, from your CSA, or you just see how incredibly cheap they are this time of year at your local market and want to take advantage of that, freeze them. Dice them up, spread them in a single layer on a sheet pan and pop the pan in the freezer. Once they are frozen solid toss them into a bag. By freezing them on the pan they won’t clump together and you can pull out just what you need for soups, stews, or chili this winter.

Tip #2 – I don’t serve bread much, but every once in awhile I buy a loaf, a baguette, or something like this for a dinner party or appetizers. I never seem to use the whole thing so I just let the remnants get completely hard on the counter (you want ALL of the moisture out or you’ll get moldy results). Then grind it up in a food processor and store the bread crumbs in a covered container. They are fresher and more taste “bread-ier” than store bought bread crumbs – and they are free from scraps!

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