Author Archives: Linda Ziedrich

About Linda Ziedrich

I grow, cook, preserve, and write about food in Oregon's Willamette Valley.

Name the Mystery Melon

Do you recognize this melon? I found one like it at a Vietnamese market in Portland in 2013, saved the seeds, and planted them in 2014. The vines were vigorous and healthy, and the fruits oblong and fairly large, with … Continue reading

Posted in Fruits | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Olive-Oil Pickles: Q&A

Before the routine use of mason jars or even paraffin in the home kitchen, olive oil was often used, in America as well as Europe, to seal air out of jars of vinegar-pickled vegetables. When you’re canning pickles in the … Continue reading

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Forget the Roots: Radishes for Spicy Sprouts

These are red-stemmed kaiware, radish sprouts, growing in one of my raised beds last September. I thank Judy Gregory for sending me the seeds. She got them from Kitazawa Seed Co., of Oakland, which has been selling Asian seeds in … Continue reading

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Another Fine Use for Parsnips

Danita’s story about parsnips in her Grandma’s stew made me curious: What about parsnips would turn off a child? Danita remembered the parsnips as bitter. Did the cooking method make them this way, or did it bring out a bitterness … Continue reading

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Last-Chance Pickles from Last Summer’s Citron Melon

I feel ridiculous giving so much attention this time of year to a fruit of hot summer days, Citrullus lanatus—that is, the species that includes both watermelons and citron melons. After all, for nearly half a year I ignored the … Continue reading

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Another Red Watermelon Pickle

I was pleased to find outside the front door yesterday a package from Gwen Schock Cowherd, my cherished advisor on all foods German-from-Russia. Gwen had sent a jar of her prize-winning unfermented watermelon pickles, made in the tradition of Midwestern … Continue reading

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Still Eating Parsnips, and Planning for More

At last week’s book club meeting, in the midst of a discussion of race and gender in nineteenth-century America and the founding of the U.S. Geological Survey, somebody asked the inevitable sort of question: How do you grow parsnips? Our … Continue reading

Posted in Vegetables | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments

Tomato Report 2014

I’m hurrying to get out this report to you, because here in the Willamette Valley it’s nearly tomato-starting time already. Our long hot summer last year produced bountiful tomato harvests for many of my neighbors but a strangely scant one … Continue reading

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No-Cooking, No-Canning Black Currant Jam

In my intermittent effort to make space in my freezers, I was delighted to come upon a bag of black currants yesterday. Just the day before, while pruning my currant bushes, I’d been dazed by the musky fragrance of the … Continue reading

Posted in Fruits, Sweet preserves | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Anise Hyssop in the Kitchen

My new darling of the herb garden, anise hyssop, is neither anise nor hyssop but a member of the mint family. You can tell this from the square stems and opposite leaves, but the scent might fool you. It’s a … Continue reading

Posted in Herbs, Wild foods | Tagged , | 6 Comments