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Hells Canyon Journal
Halfway, Oregon
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August 13, 2003     Hells Canyon Journal
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PB4 0 Hells Canyon Journal August 18, Of C@b cs and By Marjorie Baker French Even though breakfast can be rather hectic with a whole bunch of company, I do like to ask the kids what they want to eat. Usually they are pretty predictable. They like either something they have at home or something they've eaten here previously, such as the pancakes I make shaped like dinosaurs. It was pretty much the same this time, except one of the kids asked if I could make French Toast. I was happy to comply with this request as the white bread I'd put out two meals running hadn't found a taker and it was just ready to jettison or make into bread crumbs, or French Toast. My next question was, how do you like your French Toast? I grew up having bread dipped in egg and milk and served with fruit, usu- ally applesauce, but my hus- band always had his French Toast with syrup. Yet, whenever wesee it at a restaurant it is powdered with sugar. My favorite way with French Toast is to make the slices of bread very thin, dip them in egg with a little milk added, lay a slice on a hot oiled griddle, top it with a little apricot jam, pop on the other slice and cook the whole thing to- gether. Cooking it slowly assures the inside gets done, and you have a whole meal in one. However, I decided to look up French Toast in my cooking encyclopedia, and what I found was something different than I had ever made. First, it isn't a breakfast food, it's a dessert. For those who love the sugary variety of French Toast, here's the real thing. French French Toast 2 cups of milk heated with halfa vanilla bean and 1/2 cup of sugar. Bring to just below a boil and let cool with the bean still in it. Remove the bean and dip thick slices of a rich bread such as brioche into the milk. Let them get thoroughly satu- rated but not to falling apart. Beat 2 eggs until well marbled. Dip the milky bread into the eggs and fry in butter in a hot skillet until golden brown. Turn and repeat. Make up as much toast as you can soak using the 2 cups of milk and the eggs. To serve, sprinkle with powdered sugar and deco- rate them with fresh strawber- ries. (The recipe specifies a round plate - I can see no rea- son for this - but by all means, follow with tradition!) Extension Food Safety and Preservation Hotline Up and Runnning Unsure of how to safely pre- pare homemade salsa or home canned tuna? Or maybe you're curious about whether those pickles Grandma canned 20 years ago are still safe to eat. Help is a telephone call away via the Oregon State Univer- sity Extension Food Safety/ Preservation Hotline: 1-800- 354-7319. Sponsored by the OSU Ex- tension Service Family and Community Development (FCD) program, the hotline is now available 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, except holidays, through Octo- ber 15. This special service is staffed by certified OSU Extension Service Family Food Educa- tion volunteers from Lane and Douglas counties, and staffin the Lane County office of the OSU Extension Service. "The purpose of the hotline is to respond to food safety, food preservation and food stor- age questions from Orego- nians," said Carolyn Raab, OSU Extension foods and nu- trition educator and director of the food safety/preservation project. Hotline staffers are all graduates of the OSU Exten- sion Service Family Food Education volunteer program, where they receive 40 hours of instruction. Last year, hotline volunteers gave 560 hours of their time, re- spending to 7,000 calls. "We get an amazing range of questions," said Nellie Oehler, FCD nutrition educa- tion field faculty in Lane County and hotline coordina- tor. "Some people want to know if home canned food that is several years old is still safe to eat or if the cream pie they left in the back seat of the car over- night is still good. Other call- ers want us to settle arguments about whether a particular home canning practice is OK or not." "Many callers tell us that they really appreciate the hotline because they get to talk to a real person rather than listen to a recording," Oehler added. Providing this service is important, Raab emphasized, because home canning of foods can be dangerous, even lethal, if not done properly. A key concern is to prevent the bac- terium Clostridium botulinum, which causes botulism, from becoming a problem in home canned foods, Raab explained. The best way to ensure home canned foods are safe is to ob- tain the latest food preserva- tion guidelines available and follow them carefully, she said. According to a 1996 survey, 28 percent (more than 27 mil- lion) of U.S. households con- ducted home canning activi- ties in 1995-96. There are several sources of home food preservation infor- mation, manyofwhich arecom- panics that offer home can- ning equipment, said Raab. However, the OSU Extension food safety/preservation hotline, now in its sLxth year of statewide operation, is unique in that it offers the latest re- search-based information available, she said. In a 2002 survey of hotline callers, 96 percent of those re- sponding (from 21 Oregon counties) reported using the information they received. Sev- enty-five percent reported do- ing something differently as a result of the call, and 76 per- cent reported sharing the in- formation they received with others. t g LinaCa Ber eron Not Too Early To Plan for Autumn Tree-Planting Who loves a garden still his Eden keeps, Perennial pleasures plants, and wholesome harvest reaps. The words of Amos Bronson Alcott, 18th century Transcendentalist poet, edu- cator, biographer (and father of Louisa May), reminds us of the reasons we tend a gar- den. Right about now, local growers are reaping small harvests while keeping a sharp eye on the worth of a piddle of rain to the thirsty plants flourishing under a still-potent sun. Soon the har- vests will be greater, and more demanding, such that the days of September may fall through one's hands like so many fast-ripening toma- toes. And weren't you consid. ering doing some tree-plant- ing this fall? Now is a very good time - before you're inundated with activity - to think further about those plans and stake out a location and choose that tree. Whether you want the addition of a tree (or shrub) for flowering beauty, autumn color, smart summer shade, windbreak, or in a peaceful grove, the choice of a site is an important one. Fall is one of the best times of the year for planting trees. By the end of summer, most trees' energy cycles have evolved from leaf production to root development. Tem- peratures have become more moderate and moisture lev- els increased. (In Pine Valley in 2002, September and Oc- tober precipitation levels ap- proached, respectively, a half- inch and quarter-inch, al- though often those are re- versed.) With a significant decrease in the sun's angle to the earth in this hemisphere, the moisture afforded natu- rally, or arbitrarily by water- ing, will stay longer. Evergreens, as windbreaks, go well to the west or north of a house. Deciduous - those leaf-dropping trees - are ap- propriate on the south or west sides of a house where they will provide cool shade in the summer and allow longed-for sunlight in winter. i out s runnlnq ... to be included in lm coming in the Fair issue af the HeRs Can Iournal If you are a former resident or regular miter, get your cards & letters in NOW! Let us Row about yourselves, your families, careers, and even pets if you'd like, Send us pictures, too! e will publish all u .lxlates, space aliowm0, m a special "Rmmd- 'llm" section of the August 27"1 ssue of the Hells Canyon dournal me to for ml, Join the reunion! Send your letters and pictures to: Round-up Time c/o Hells Canyon Journal EO. Box 646 Halfway, Oregon 978:54 or e-mall them to: hcjads@plnetel.com. cally the rule is to provide a hole that is as deep as the root ball and twice the diam- eter. Ifa container-bound tree is thick with root growth that hugs the soil it's already in, it will need a hole that is at least double the width of the container. As you dig, you'll want to save the backfill soil - that which has come out of the hole. During the first year after it's planted, this young tree will be working hard estab- lishing its new roots before it faces winter dormancy. Dry, inorganic fertilizer added to the backfill soil at this time may burn those new roots, so Photo by Lind** Bergeron wait until early springtime. POT-BOUND EVERGREEN long ready for transplanting. Organic fertilizers, however, release their nutrients more If you're going to plant a tree as well as shrubs, it's suggested that you plant the tree first and fill in the area with the shrubs, much like you'd start an artistic land- scape with the central larger object first as a focus and then adding surrounding details. Folks working with yards in town, with property ex- tending back from the street, should keep in mind that shorter trees (with a mature height of 25 feet) should be planted at least 15 feet in from utility wires, and in- creasingly taller trees (40 feet, 60 feet) should be established further and further back, with the larger at least 35 feet away from a house or build- ing, to both encourage root development for its size and to minimize future damage to the structure. Bare-root, Ball or Container Whether the young tree you plant comes bare-rooted, balled-in-burlap, or in a con- talner, it is going to need an appropriate hole to afford it the promise of success. Typi- slowly and may be added to the backfill soil. Deciduous trees often come bare-rooted. You may want to trim away any roots that become broken. While dig- ging, soak the roots in water or keep in a moist bag, but no longer than half a day. The finished hole should have a mound left in the center, upon which the roots can be gently draped and spread. Fill the hole two-thirds of the way with soil while supporting the tree trunk and firm it in. Soak with water, then add the re- maining one-third after the water has drained away. (This eliminates air pockets.) When firmly set in place, cre- ate a ring of soil around the tree to act as a catch basin, but make a point of remem- bering to remove the ring be- fore winter which would also catch and hold frozen water too near the roots. There are those tree grow- ers who would rather notpro- vide an ample hole for a trans- plant with the thought to how the adjusting tree will adapt. If it's in a large hole, will it develop its root system freely in the freshly cultivated back- fill only to slow up as it comes up against the surrounding hard soil? Or, if it goes onto a hole that's just about it's own size, will its root system adapt to the restrictions of its new environment and establish itself more slowly? These are factors to consider. Trees that come balled in burlap should also be soaked a little before planting, and leave the burlap on. (If you're working with light soil, it helps to gently poke a few holes in the burlap with a sharp point.) Create a mound to plant on, allowing one to two inches of the ball above the ground level, knowing that it will settle itself. Do not spread out the roots. Securely position it and remove the twine from around the ball. After filling, soak the backfill soil well. (There is a dissenting view that trees balled-in-burlap should have the burlap re- moved before planting since occasionally nurserymen may wrap the balled roots in plas- tic before covering it in bur- lap, or simply for the sake of the opportunity of looking at the roots. While Sunset's Western mrden Book- a re- liable resource for the region - advises gardeners to keep the burlap on but to loosen it at the top, perhaps the best advice is to use your own judg- ment. A balled-in-burlap tree may feel like it's too tightly restricted and in want of free- dom, while another may seem that the balled soil is quite loose and that the plant needs the full protection and secu- rity of the burlap. This defi- nitely seems like a circum- stantial call.) Trees that emerge from containers will also be placed on a mound of soil that you've created after digging a hole. Remove from the container just before you're ready to plant, first giving a little whack to the side to loosen the inside soil from the con- tainer wall. If very root- bound, it can be soaked well, washing some of the soil away even, and the circling roots gently unwound. Young trees can benefit from a good layer of mulching material. Also, they should be given support if needed, whether with an arrange- ment of opposing or triangu- lated stakes, or guy wire that is set carefully to not cut into the bark of the trunk. Check in on the youngster regularly. You may need to improve the supports, or add mulch, or simply observe its overall health. (I always consider a young tree in its first year of establishing itself worth ba- bying.) Michael Pollan, in his 1991 book of essays, Second Na- ture." a gardener "s education, writes "To plant a big tree is to throw a long shadow on the future of a place, and we're obliged to consider its impact carefully." But don't let that stop you, only make you pause. Pine Eagle Clinic May Have the Medication You Need in Stock. If we don't stock it, we'll get it. Many major prescription plans and co-pays accepted. Most common antibiotics, allergy and pain medications in stock SHOPLOcALLY! ( t t s t ] ] t