Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Juno Wasn't So Bad

Continuing the current trend of naming storms, our latest winter Nor' Easter was dubbed "Juno." The predicted "Snowpocalypse" wasn't as big or bad as advertised. We did get about two feet of snow along with howling wind and low temperatures, but the snow was the light and fluffy kind and the whole thing was over in about twelve hours. The town spread salt on the roads before the snow started to fall, so there really weren't any accumulations on the roads during the fist couple hours of the storm and the roads were quickly plowed during and after the big event; unlike the 2012 storm "Nemo" where we didn't see a plow for five days.

All told, we spent about four hours shoveling, but only got a mild case of The Snow Shoveling Blues.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Feeding The Homegrown String Band: Fermented Tofu

Spicy Fermented Tofu  - photo by Rick Jackofsky
We make a lot of our food "from scratch" and try to buy as little packaged food as possible. This not only keeps the bellies of us "starving artists" full on a low budget, it also provides us with healthier and better tasting food than the pre-packaged versions of traditional foods available from the supermarket. My Dad calls me "Dr. Fermento." There is always something bubbling away or incubating in our kitchen. Today I am starting a batch of tempeh, while Georgianne is making feta cheese. Earlier this week Georgianne made a half gallon of yogurt and I baked two loaves of bread, made a pound of tofu, and bottled up a half gallon of kombucha. Yesterday I made kefir, hard cranberry cider, and a batch of fermented tofu, which is basically moldy tofu marinated in shaoxing wine, sea salt, and hot pepper.

To make fermented tofu you cut up a block of firm tofu into one inch cubes, put them on a baking sheet between two tea towels and press them under a two pound of weight for two hours. The pressed tofu is then placed in a glass baking dish covered in plastic wrap (with a few holes poked through.) Then the fun(gi) begins: you leave the tofu out in a warm room (I used a bread proofer since our house is so cool this time of year) for two or three days until the tofu passes the three S test. When the tofu is Slimy, Splotchy, and Stinky it's time to marinate and refrigerate. You should let it sit in the fridge for at least a week or more; then you will have a creamy, spicy, pungent, delicious condiment that keeps indefinitely.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Crazy Beans January 17th, 2015

This Saturday, January 17th, The full band will be doing some Jammin' at Crazy Beans in Miller Place. Come on down have a cup of coffee or a mug of beer with some Homegrown Jam. It's a free show (donations are much appreciated). We'll be playing from 7 pm 'til 9 pm or so.

465 Rt 25A Miller Place, NY
(631) 403-4954

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Homegrown Two Show January 11th on Long Island

Our first show of 2015 will be a Homegrown Two, aka: Cackle & Crow, show at the North Babylon Public Library. Georgianne and I will be performing from 2 to 3:30 pm on Sunday January 11th. The show will feature ballads, blues, and banjo tunes played on banjo, guitar, harmonica, dulcimer, banjo-uke, ukelele, and doumbek.  I'm really looking forward to performing some of the guitar/dulcimer duets Georgianne and I often play together at home as well as some solo clawhammer banjo tunes that don't usually make it into full band shows.

The Mountain Dulcimer, an American Musical Tradition

2:00 pm January 11, 2015  
815 Deer Park Avenue
North Babylon, NY 11703