Sauerkraut, Natural Dyes and Popcorn

  • Week of October 14th, 2013:

This week our class was supposed to visit a local urban garden called “Glide Rooftop Garden”, however, plans were cancelled. But luckily, we had other plans in store. Instead of urban gardens, this week our class made homemade and fresh sauerkraut using the greens (mostly kale) that was ready to be harvested. As a class, we were divided into two groups, one group would initially make the first batch of sauerkraut, while the other group was making lavender wands, harvesting lupine seeds and/or weeding around the garden.

For our sauerkraut, we used a lot of kale found in the garden, but one could use possibly any type of green(s) they so pleased. Here is a link to last semester’s “How to make sauerkraut”. How to Make Sauerkraut link! At the end of our labors, we had made three mason jars filled of sauerkraut and designated three different classmates to watch over the fermentation process.

Here are some pictures of our day 😀 !

Making Lavender WandsHeather and Grace enjoying arts and crafts

Making Sauerkraut (2)

Making Sauerkraut (3)

Making Seed Packets-Seed Saving (Lupine Seeds)Harvesting seeds…

  • Week of October 21st, 2013:

I gotta admit, no one probably knew that the natural dye of pomegranate was a mixture of sea foam green and azure blue- but it is! You would think that a pomegranate’s natural dye was red because of the red stains you obtain when eating them, but it’s not! This week, our class worked with natural dyes using everyday plants around our very own garden. Some other natural dyes we used were extracted from onion skins, pomegranate skin (everything but the seeds) and the unripe seeds of sunflowers. For each dye, we heated up 3 stainless steel bowls over a flame and brought them each to a boil. When boiling, we threw in the onion skins in one bowl and the others in their bowls and covered them all with lids. After a while, the natural color will come out and that means soaking fabrics in the bowl (while boiling)!’

Here are some pictures of our day!

578084_10151936211737159_1884373146_nCristina is very excited to be making dyes 😀

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  • Week of October 28th, 2013:

Our class just happened to land on October 31st this week, which is Halloween! This week, our class was divided into the different groups as the previous months to start prepping for our community dinner and farm stand. It’s going to be very interesting what every group will be making!

Aside from assigning groups, our class popped our own popcorn! Rachel, our professor, had left over “Black Dakota” kernels– a type of kernel that is sharp (pointy) and deep purple/almost black in color. We used a manual turn style popper for our popcorn and a portable gas stove. First we poured a oil enough to coat the bottom and also a generous amount of butter. Next we poured in our kernels and frequently turned the popcorn to prevent burning. After popping all of our kernels, our class experimented by using rosemary, or seaweed in our popcorn! It turned out very delicious!

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Emily in costume for Halloween 😀

Our class, after popping popcorn migrated to a room inside the School of Education building right next to the USF garden to watch a documentary called “The Garden”. The Garden is a documentary focused on the struggles of the South Central Community farm back in 2003-2005 and their hardship of trying to keep their community garden from being shut down. The documentary was very touching, and can easily be accessible online by purchasing through Amazon and other venues.

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