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Plant the Garden of Your Dreams with a Customized Humble Seed Kit

April 3rd, 2012

Spring is officially in full swing, and many of us are eager to get back into our gardens and harvest the delicious benefits.  Selecting the seed varieties that work best for your own growing conditions, environment and dinner plates is all part of the fun – and can produce very positive results in your garden.  With this in mind, Humble Seed is pleased to offer a popular demanded option to take advantage of: the opportunity to customize your own seed kit! We are thrilled to partner with Very Jane once again to bring gardeners this much requested option for a limited time.  We also look forward to featuring a permanent customized seed kit option in the near future on our own website.  Review the details below so you can begin your seed selecting right away!

How To Customize Your Seed Kit

To get started, simply review the 28 varieties of premium seeds that are offered exclusively for this promotion. Select 10 different seed packs of your choice. Due to inventory demand, we will not be able to fulfill multiple packs of the same seed type within a single order. Each customized seed kit is priced at $32.00, a 20% discount from the retail price ($40.00) and offered exclusively for this promotion! We are offering the following premium seeds for each customized kit:

 

Vegetables:

Scarlet Nantes Carrot

White Bunching Onion Scallion

Crimson Sweet Watermelon

Amazing Cauliflower

Tavera Green Bean (organic)

Red Express Cabbage (organic)

Green Romaine (organic)

Rosa Bianca Eggplant (organic / heirloom)

Washington Cherry tomato (organic)

Rose Tomato (heirloom / organic)

Black Seeded Simpson (heirloom)

Marketmore Cucumber (organic)

DeCicco Broccoli (organic /heirloom)

Peppers:

Yankee Bell Pepper

Antohi Romanian Specialty Frying Pepper (organic)

Padron Pepper (heirloom)

Joe’s Long Cayenne (organic)

Conchos Jalapeno

 Herbs:

Superbo Basil

Purly Chives

Banquet Dill

Bronze and Green Fennel (organic)

Greek Oregano

Cumin

German Winter Thyme

Titan Parsley

Common Sage

Santo Cilantro (coriander)

As always, Humble Seed offers non-GMO and non-hybrid seeds with heirloom and certified organic options at an exceptional value. You can also trust that our premium seeds have one of the highest germination rates when compared with other seed companies, and we ship them directly to you in a re-sealable and airtight Mylar® bag; guaranteed for long-term storage and effective seed saving.  At Humble Seed, you can trust that “ex-seeding expectations” is an affirmation we take seriously.

Click here to start building your seed kit!

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Hot For The Antohi Romanian Specialty Frying Pepper!

March 19th, 2012

Looking to spice up your meals at dinnertime? Consider, for a moment, the Antohi Romanian Specialty Frying Pepper found in The Producer as well as Hot Mama’s Peppers and Chiles. This bright yellow pepper that ripens into a brilliant red will entice your taste buds with its bright, sweet flavor.  It tastes sweetest fried, but can be baked, sautéed or even grilled for full flavor.  If you are new to growing peppers, plan on sowing the seeds indoors in mid to late March.  When spring is in full swing, you’ll find that they will become the coquettes of your garden. While you nurture and dote on them; they will ripen and plump, and undoubtedly bring promise of a flavorful dish!

Contrary to the popular belief, peppers are not annuals. Yet, they can be easy to grow if offered warm temperatures and plenty of sunlight.  These frying peppers also do quite well in drained soils rich in calcium and phosphorus. Be sure to harvest them when they are green or mature, and use gardening scissors so to not damage the plant.  Picking peppers when they are fully mature also encourages new buds to form.

These peppers are exceptionally flavorful when cooked in olive oil, and make a great addition topped on your favorite sandwich, or added to a stir-fry.  The recipe below is fresh and tasty — one bite will have you lingering over the thought of leisurely dining on a Mediterranean coast. The best part?  This sandwich can be ready in 20 minutes. Is it just us, or is it hard not to puff up your chest a bit when making a delicious sandwich using vegetables from your own garden?

Mediterranean-Style Vegetable Sandwich

(Makes 4 Sandwiches)

1 medium sized eggplant, sliced length-wise into ¼ inch thick rounds

1 tomato, sliced into rounds

½ onion, cut into half moon slices

5-6 Antohi Romanian Specialty frying peppers, de-seeded and sliced

8 ounces of Mozzarella cheese, ¼ inch slices (optional)

10-12 basil leaves

4 teaspoons Balsamic vinaigrette

¼ cup olive oil

8 slices of crusty French bread

salt and pepper to taste

Method:  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Lay a single layer of the eggplant rounds on a baking tray.  Brush each round with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 20 minutes, flipping them over halfway for even cooking. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet to medium high heat.  Drizzle 2 teaspoons of olive oil in the pan, and add the onion, a pinch of salt, and your frying peppers.  Sauté until tender and fragrant.

Once the eggplant has cooled, layer on the eggplant, onions, peppers, basil and cheese (if using) on a slice of crusty bread.  Drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette and olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Serve immediately.

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Garden Hero: The Lovely Ladybug

July 16th, 2010

 

With their richly colored orange-red wings and distinct black spots, lovely ladybugs often conjure up childhood memories of placing one on your hand or arm then intently watching it with fantastical awe. This beautiful bug is adored by many children for its calm nature, but it’s also adored by gardeners for its beneficial pest control behavior.

Ladybugs have colossal appetites and not only consume aphids—lice that feed on plant juices—but also eat other insects and larvae, including leaf hoppers, mealybugs, mites, whiteflies, and the eggs of the Colorado potato beetle, just to name a few. One ladybug, in its lifetime, can consume more than 4,000 aphids, their preferred meal.

In addition to consuming aphids and other insects, ladybugs require pollen as a source of food, in order to mature and lay eggs. Some plants that attract ladybugs include basil, cilantro, dill, fennel, pepper, thyme, and tomatoes. If you want to be extra considerate of your little garden heroes, consider planting bell-shaped flowers, such as lilies or tulips, which capture drinking water for ladybugs and provide a cool, relaxing oasis for them to inhabit. With the garden protection that ladybugs provide, they deserve to be pampered!

If you’re interested in using the heroic ladybug to help combat the villains in your garden, it is important that you not use insecticides—which you should try to avoid regardless. Insecticides will not only eliminate most of their food source but also discourage ladybugs from laying their eggs in your garden.

If purchasing ladybugs for your garden, do not release them during the heat of the day. Keep them in a cool place, such as the refrigerator, before releasing them in the evening after the sun goes down. Placing your ladybugs in the refrigerator will not harm them but simply slow them down. Ladybugs do not fly when it’s dark, so this is your best chance at giving them the opportunity to get comfortable in their new living environment. Also, before releasing the ladybugs, water the areas that you will be placing them in so they have plenty of water to drink. Think of ladybugs as house guests; you want them to feel welcomed and comfortable. If your ladybugs are comfortable in their new home, chances are they’ll stick around. You can’t fence ladybugs in, but should they choose to stay and live in your garden they’ll be great heroes in combating those villainous aphids and their sidekicks.

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Hot Paper Lantern: Some Like It Hot

May 14th, 2010

 

While some people do not like hot foods others cannot get enough of them, taking on the mantra, “The hotter the better!” If you’re one of those people that like to turn up the heat in the kitchen then consider planting the Hot Paper Lantern in your garden or container gardening scheme. You’ll be able to create hot and flavorful dishes that will put your taste buds to the heat test—the Hot Paper Lantern offers habanero-like qualities, from the flavor to the blistering heat. If cooking and preparing hot pepper dishes is new to you here is a great tip: If your mouth is on fire after eating a hot pepper dish drink milk. Casein, a substance found in dairy products, helps disrupt the burning sensation.

The high-yielding Hot Paper Lantern grows tall and puts on a colorful show in the garden, turning from bright lime green to shades of orange and scarlet red. The slightly wrinkled peppers grow 3-4” long, and this pepper is characterized by its eye-catching, elongated shape. It’s a beauty!

Grilled Corn with Hot Paper Lantern and Mango Butter

Ingredients

  • ¼ to ½ hot paper lantern pepper, trimmed and seeded
  • 1 small mango, peeled, pitted and coarsely chopped
  • ¼ cup mango nectar
  • 3 teaspoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 ½ sticks of unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 ears of corn

Preparation

Add the pepper, mango, mango nectar, and honey to a small saucepan; bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, until mango is very soft. Transfer mixture to a food processor; puree until smooth. Strain into a small bowl and allow puree to cool for 30 minutes.

Clean out food processor then add the pepper-mango puree back into processor. Add cilantro, softened butter and salt to food processor then puree ingredients until smooth. Spoon pepper-mango butter into a small bowl then cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 30 minutes, or until chilled.

Prepare grill for moderate heat. To prepare corn, pull husks back to the base of the stalks, leaving husks attached. Remove corn silk then pull husks back over corn. Tie husks shut with butcher string. Place corn in a large bowl then add cold water. Submerge corn for 10 minutes. Note: Use a plate to keep corn submerged in water.

Drain corn, but do not pat dry. Place corn on the grill and cook for about 8 minutes, turning occasionally, until corn is tender. Transfer to plates, spread with pepper-mango butter and serve. YIELDS 8

If you would like planting information for the Hot Paper Lantern, check out our seed listings then scroll down to Hot Paper Lantern, and for more information about wonderful chile peppers visit The Chile Pepper Institute (CPI).

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Parsley Salad (Tabouli)

March 22nd, 2010

2 cups cracked wheat
2 cups very hot water
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon pepper
1 medium-size cucumber, chopped
2 small tomatoes, chopped
8 green onions, sliced
1/2 cup fresh chopped mint
2 cups fresh chopped parsley
1 garlic clove, minced

Soak the cracked wheat in the hot water for about 30 minutes, until most of the water is absorbed. Drain any excess water then squeeze cracked wheat dry. While cracked wheat soaks, prepare dressing by mixing the lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl; set aside. When cracked wheat is ready, add cucumber, tomatoes, green onions, mint, parsley and garlic to a large bowl. Add cracked wheat and dressing; stir to combine. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

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Basil Pesto

March 22nd, 2010

2 packed cups fresh basil leaves
1/3 cup pine nuts
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to season

Place basil and pine nuts in a food processor; pulse to combine. Add garlic; pulse to combine. With the food processor running, slowly add in the olive oil in a constant stream. Stop food processor then scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula. Add grated cheese; pulse again, to combine. Season the pesto with salt and black pepper.

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Bay-Thyme Scalloped Potatoes

March 22nd, 2010

2 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, minced
2 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
5 medium-size russet potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/8-inch thick
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup low sodium chicken broth
2 bay leaves
4 ounces sharp cheddar cheese (shredded)

Adjust an oven rack in center of oven then preheat oven to 425 degrees F. In a Dutch oven set over medium-high heat, melt butter. When foam subsides, add onion; cook for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned and soft. Add thyme, garlic, salt and pepper; stir and cook for 30 seconds. Add potatoes, cream, broth and bay leaves; bring ingredients to a very light boil. Cover Dutch oven, reduce heat to medium-low then simmer for about 10 minutes, until potatoes are just about tender. Discard bay leaves. Transfer ingredients to a buttered 8-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese then bake for about 15 minutes, until cream is bubbling and top is golden brown. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

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Grilled Chicken Breasts with Cumin

March 22nd, 2010

Cooking spray
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, pounded to 1/2-inch thick
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Spray grill rack with cooking spray then heat to medium-high. Rub olive oil onto chicken breasts. In a small bowl, combine cumin, salt and pepper; rub mixture evenly onto chicken breasts. Place on grill and cook for about 4-5 minutes per side, until grill marks have formed and chicken is cooked through. Remove chicken from grill then let rest for 5 minutes.

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Sauteed Fingerling Potatoes with Sea Salt and Fresh Sage

March 22nd, 2010

1 1/2 pounds fingerling potatoes, unpeeled
3 1/2 teaspoons coarse sea salt
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
8 fresh sage leaves

Place potatoes and 2 teaspoons of sea salt in a saucepan then add enough water to cover by 2 inches; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, cover pan then cook for 20 minutes; drain. Heat olive oil in a large skillet that is set over medium-high heat. Add potatoes, stirring to coat. Sprinkle potatoes with pepper and remaining sea salt. Add sage leaves to skillet then cook for about 10 minutes, until sage is crisp and potato skins are lightly golden.

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Bean Soup with Fennel

March 22nd, 2010

1 1/2 cups dried navy beans, soaked overnight
1 pound smoked ham hocks
8 cups water
2 large bunches of fennel leaves, stems snipped off
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 onion, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
3 teaspoons black pepper
3 large potatoes, chopped
1 bunch green onions, chopped, white parts only
1 cup chopped cabbage
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 pound ground pork sausage, browned and drained

Place beans, ham hocks and water in a large pot; bring to a boil then reduce heat. Simmer ingredients until beans can be mashed and pork is tender, about 1 hour. Chop fennel until you have about 2 cups; set aside. Add garlic, onion, bay leaf and pepper to pot; simmer 5 minutes. Add chopped fennel, potatoes, green onion, cabbage, olive oil and cooked sausage to pot. Return soup to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until vegetables are tender. Discard bay leaf before serving.

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