Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Our Authors, On the Road: September 24 – October 7

Our authors are out and about, celebrating sustainable food, beer, flip, and the arrival of new books. Here’s where you can find them over the next two weeks.

Kirsten and Christopher Shockey hit the road with their new book, Fermented Vegetables

Monday, September 22, 2014

Carleen Madigan: Cleaning and Saving Tomato Seeds

Saving Vegetable Seeds by Fern Marshall Bradley reveals the trick to removing tomato seeds’ gelatinous outer layer — the first step in saving this year’s favorites for next summer’s garden.

The Rosella Purple proved one of the most delicious tomatoes we grew. Photo © Mars Vilaubi
This summer, several Storeyites grew tomatoes to photograph for our upcoming book, Epic Tomatoes. During our informal taste tests, two varieties stood out as favorites: Rosella Purple (one of the dwarf varieties author Craig LeHoullier and his colleagues developed) and Mexico Midget (a tiny grape tomato from Mexico, which Craig introduced to the trade). Now that the photography for the book is complete, we figured we’d save a few seeds from our favorites for next year.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Brooke Dojny: Apples for Your Pie

Pick-your-own orchards have hung their signs and bright red fruit dots the branches of trees: apple season is here, and there’s no such thing as too much pie. 

Photo © Scott Dorrance
My standard apple pie recipe calls for a combination of two commonly available supermarket apples – sweet, juicy McIntoshes and tart, firm Granny Smiths. However, if you know the apples from your local farm stand or orchard, you can use fresh-from-the-tree (and usually much more flavorful) apples in your pies.

To find out which apples are best for a particular cooking application (not just pies, but baked apples, applesauce, muffins, etc.) ask the farmer for advice — or ask nicely whether you can taste their apples and decide for yourself. You’ll be able to tell immediately whether the apple variety is puckery-tart, super sweet and juicy, or somewhere in between.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Alison Pacuska: Storey and The Spinning Loft, United for Spinzilla

We’re gearing up for Spinzilla — a week of competitive spinning put on by TNNA’s Spinning and Weaving Group — and Team Storey captain Alison Pacuska says: we want you! 

Join Team Storey for Spinzilla, and spin for a good cause!
You may have heard the whispers, but in case you haven’t — Storey Publishing and The Spinning Loft are celebrating the needle arts and Beth Smith’s new book, The Spinner’s Book of FleeceHow are we celebrating, you ask?

Why, with a week of spinning for a good cause, and we want you to join us!

Spinzilla is a week-long spinning extravaganza presented by The National NeedleArts Association (TNNA)’s Spinning and Weaving Group each October. The event supports TNNA’s Needle Arts Mentoring Program, which pairs mentors with young people who might not otherwise get to learn the needle arts — crochet, cross stitch, knitting, needlepoint, and spinning — and enjoy our particular brand of relaxation and creativity.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Bloom Day — September 2014

In these cool September days, fall sunflowers, sedum, mums, dahlias, and those final rounds of tomatoes fill our gardens. What’s blooming (and ripening) where you are?


These dahlias were grown from seed from the Storey garden group seed purchase!
Dahlia, with visitor

Friday, September 12, 2014

Tim Herd: Making Learning Sweeter with Maple

As cooler temperatures settle in and the maple trees begin their colorful autumn turn, author Tim Herd writes that the world of maple holds rich lessons for young learners.

Tim Herd is the author of Maple Sugar
When I used to do nature programs in elementary schools, the most common question I received from the eager upturned faces was: “Is it real?”

(What? You thought I brought fake nature?)

Despite how I may have liked to respond, the kids’ interest — and their question — was real, which reveals two important things:
  1. There’s an innate need to connect to our beautiful, resourceful, sustaining world.
  2. That connection is increasingly strained, ignored, and broken.
Perhaps it’s to be expected from a generation that has always known a “virtual reality.” But that such a question needs asking may well be the gasping canary of our educational coalmine.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Mother Earth News Fair: Seven Springs!

We’re all set up and ready to go for this weekend’s Mother Earth News Fair in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania

We’re so excited to have both Mother Earth News Fair veterans and authors new to the MEN Fair experience along for the ride. Check out our schedule of presentations and book signings, and connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram throughout the weekend for photos, updates, announcements, and special offers. See you in PA!

A Recipe for Rustic Pear Galette

In the season of plentiful pears, a galette is one favorite option for a delicious, low-maintenance dessert.

Just picked and ready for dessert
Over the weekend, I found myself in front of a brick wall — at least, I think it was a brick wall. It was nearly impossible to see it through the thick, untended branches of my friend’s espaliered pear tree. Everywhere I looked, those branches were heavy with bright green pears. “Take as many as you want,” my friend said. “I never do anything with them.” Hiding my dismay at the thought that the fruit would be otherwise left to rot, I picked what I could carry. The fruit has ripened on my kitchen table all week and this morning, I cut a thin slice off one round side. The taste? Sweet, crisp flesh without an ounce of grittiness: pear perfection that’s now bound for this galette from Ashley Gartland’s Dishing Up® Oregon.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Our Authors, On the Road: September 9 – 23

As summer winds down, Storey authors are hitting the road for talks, signings, classes, demos, and green chile cheeseburgers. 

Here’s where you’ll find many of them over the next two weeks.
Sara Delaney and Leslie Ann Bestor recently signed copies of How to Crochet and How to Knit at WEBS Yarn Store in Northampton, MA. Leslie Ann will be teaching and signing in Freeport, Maine, on September 20.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Nan K. Chase: Crazy Wines and Meads

Once Drink the Harvest co-author Nan Chase gets going in her North Carolina kitchen, nothing — not even kudzu, that ubiquitous invasive vine — is safe from her beverage-making prowess.

Kudzu blossoms, destined for beverage greatness
September is crazy time in the garden, with huge loads of random fruits and vegetables suddenly coming in. The other day my husband brought in two huge and just-about-overripe tomatoes that had been hiding in a tangle of cherry tomatoes. It wasn’t long before the big tomatoes were overripe, and my motto quickly became: “If you bring ripe produce into the house, have a plan or git a plan.” That applies to me, too.