Archives for posts with tag: garden

i have become a fan of the grain salad as of late. while trying to explore new places for lunch, when working at warner brothers on ‘pretty little liars‘, and too lazy to bring my own, i discovered olive + thyme. it is just close enough to pick up an to go order, or sit and eat if i want to relax. well, one day i strayed from my usual beet and arugula salad, and chose the quinoa and corn. it was so refreshing and perfect for summer i needed to make it at home. so damn easy.

tonight i when i got home, and knew the only thing doing pretty well in our ltl community garden has been the basil, thought maybe i could do a spin off of the quinoa + corn salad?


this is what i came up with:

  • quinoa (1 cup dry makes about 3 cups cooked)
  • basil (7-10 large leaves, 1/4 cup once minced)
  • peas (1 cup)
  • feta (1-2 ounces chopped small)
  • red onion (3 tbsp)
  • green onion (1/4 cup)
  • lemon juice (1 lemon)
  • lime juice (2 limes)
  • olive oil (1/4 cup)
  • salt (1/2 tbsp)

i did this all to taste. i started with 1 cup dry quinoa, cooked it, chilled it (or just bring it to room temp), and went from there. parenthesis are meant to be approximations. switch things up a bit. mint for basil. corn for peas. try apple cider vinegar instead of citrus? i don’t care.

photo (4)

just please enjoy summer!

note: the next day, the citrus seemed to have soaked in and be a bit overpowering, so i may reduce that in the future.


if you are like me and live in a loft condo where there is little to no green space on the property, or have to jump through hoops to get approval from your hoa to utilize communal space as a garden, there are solutions.

the windowfarms project has developed a way to grow fresh fruits, veggies, and herbs in your own home:

even though i do think it would look really cool hanging in my window, it does seem like quite an undertaking, and i worry if i have a green thumb to be successful.

i am also concerned about any possible bpa or other chemicals leaching from the plastic water bottles into the plants. they do state this on their FAQ’s page:

“Some scientists in the community are unconcerned, postulating that the size and complexity of the BPA molecule size and complexity is likely too much for plants root hairs to uptake. To be safe, the community and core team are developing alternatives to the use of plastic water bottles. We are also looking for science-minded volunteers with the appropriate equipment to take-on the challenge of measuring any chemical leaching to verify these concerns.”

so, i did a little research. here is what nestle waters (their 1.5l bottle is the recommended bottle to use in the window farm system) has to say on their ‘are plastic water bottles safe?’ page:

“BPA is not present in our bottled water packaging smaller than three gallons. Our single-serve bottles (typically 1.5 liters and smaller) are made from PET plastic (marked with the “1” symbol), which is flexible and lightweight.”

but then, as somewhat of a disclaimer, at the bottom of the page, they state this:

“The available scientific evidence indicates that bottled water is safe when stored properly and consumed in a reasonable amount of time. We recommend consumers treat bottled water as they would any food product and store it at or below room temperature, out of direct sunlight, and away from solvents and chemicals.”

i’m not ruling this out as an option, but being that window farming is dependent on direct sunlight, and that there are numerous warnings on re-using plastic bottles with a #1 on them, i might just wait for verification, or at least more evidence, that planting in them is safe.

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