Chicken Garbanzo Soup

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Since it is officially fall I figured it was time to start cooking up some delicious warm soups! This recipe was the result of my husband throwing some things together and coming up with a master piece! This soup is a go-to in my house.. it is SOOO good! Give it a shot and let me know how you like it.

Ingredients:

4-6 Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
6-8 Cups of water, divided
2 Cans of Garbanzo Beans
1 Cube of chicken bullion
2 Cans of Tomato Soup
1/2 Cup of Chopped green pepper
1/2 Cup of Chopped onions
1 Crushed garlic clove
1 Medium tomato, chopped
1/4 cup Cilantro, rough chopped
1/2 Tsp Crushed Red Pepper or your favorite spicy chili flakes (Optional)
1/2 Tsp of Annatto (for color and optional))
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste

Place chicken breast in a pot with chicken bullion and 3-4 cups of water. (Just enough to cover the chicken). Bring to a boil then cover and simmer for 30-40 minutes.

In another pot pour 4 cups of water and tomato soup and bring to a simmer.

Add in garbanzo beans and tomato and let simmer for 10 minutes.

While the soup is simmering, drain and shred chicken with two forks. The chicken should fall apart very easily.

Chop peppers, onions and garlic and saute in an oiled pan for 2 minutes. Add shredded chicken and annatto to pan. Continue to saute until peppers are cooked and onions are slightly caramelized.

Add the Chicken mix to the soup.

Mix in red pepper or chili powder. (I used homemade habanero flakes made with habaneros I grew in my garden! We like it spicy!)

Add salt and pepper to taste.

Simmer for 10-15 minutes.

Add Cilantro just before serving.

Then sit down relax and prepare to fight off the urge to “slap yo mama” as we southerners would say. Look it up, we are not really slapping our mothers… we love our Moms! 😉

Let me know what you think!

Much Love!

Eva

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Fall Planting in Florida

According to the weather man, we have had our first “cold-front”. For those of us here in Central Florida that means we didn’t break 90 Degrees Fahrenheit. If you are anything like me you put a light jacket on in the morning and by 9am you were sweating bullets!

Much like the temperature is different, fall planting is also on a bit of a different schedule in Zone 9. (what are zones in the gardening word?) During the summer, the scorching heat and heavy rain makes it difficult to produce the variety of vegetables we would like. While things like peppers, okra and eggplant grow well in the hot, muggy, rainy Florida summers, it can be difficult to successfully grow much else. And while I LOVE my successful peppers this year, I am ready for more variety!

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This week is the official start of fall and that means it is the BEST growing season in Florida! So I have begun to start my seeds. This fall I will be planing zucchini, yellow squash, a variety of different tomatoes, mustard greens, collard greens, swiss chard, beats, carrots, radishes and a variety of herbs, just to name a few! I am so EXCITED!

Collage 2015-09-21 17_36_29 I like using these mini greenhouses to help with the germination process. Starting your seeds is very important. Make sure you read the package to see if you should start them indoors or if you can sow them straight into the ground.

I’ll have an update soon when I am ready to transplant into the ground! Be sure to leave a comment and tell me what you are growing this fall!

Happy Fall planting!

Much Love

Eva

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What are Zones in the Gardening World?

So you are ready to start a garden. (Yay! I am so excited for you!) You buy a bunch of seeds, some good soil and start watering away. After a while you notice that some of the plants are not doing so well or never made it much past germination. Sound familiar? It does for me because that is exactly what happened to me the first time I tried to start a garden. So may times before I got to this point and gave up but I am here to tell you that you don’t have too! A little bit of education is all you need to start a successful garden. One of the best tools to use is the Plant Hardiness Zone Map that is put out by the USDA. This map divides the entire country into “zones”. These zones are designed to help farmers and everyday home gardeners figure out what plants will thrive in any given season in your specific area.

Click here view the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map

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Seed Addict! How to Save Your Own Seeds

Hello! My name is Eva and I am a seed addict! It may sound silly but I know my fellow home gardeners understand how I feel. On Friday of last week I picked a few items from my ridiculously large wish list on one of my favorite organic seeds website. It took me almost an hour to pick what I wanted to plant this fall! There are so many amazing choices! I also had to take into account that I already have a TON of seeds either left over from last season or that I have saved from my own harvest. I looked at the tracking number about 3 times a day to see where they were at and only three business days later I got my seeds! I was like a kid in a candy store!

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While buying seeds to start off or to ease your seed-addiction 😉 is exciting a fun, some people forget that saving your own seeds is not only rewarding but also FREE! One of the best accomplishments for me as a home gardener will always be when I see a plant growing with beautiful vegetables to feed to my family. What makes that feeling even sweeter is when I know that the plant came from a seed that was previously in a vegetable that I grew. Saving your own seeds is also a way to pass heirloom seeds down to future generations. The word heirloom refers to an item or object of value that is past on from one generation to the next. Therefore, an heirloom seed is a seed that comes from a plant that has been passed down from one generation to the next. In other words your children, your children’s children and beyond could be planting seeds from the same plants you are growing in your garden right now. Heirloom seeds that are passed down through many generations are considered to be very valuable to home gardeners and farmers.

Planting your own seeds is not only FREE but so easy to do! Some seeds require a little more attention then others depending on what kind of seed you are working with but they all follow the same basic steps: take the seeds out of the fruit, wipe off any remaining flesh and place in a glass or ceramic container in a non-humid, shaded place. Keep checking on them every few days and once they are fully dry (not sticking together or bending) your seeds are ready! One thing to keep in mind is if seeds are wet, like tomato seeds for example, try to stay away from placing your seeds on a paper plate or paper towel to dry. The wet seeds tend to get stuck to the paper and are difficult to remove. Using glass or ceramic is best. And of course, always plant organic, non-GMO seeds 😉

If you are just starting your garden or are in need of more seeds to plant some of my favorite companies to buy seeds from are Seeds Now, Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds and Seed Savers Exchange.

Happy fall planting!

Much Love!

Eva

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