The Internet can provide so many recipes for whatever you want to cook with that I’m surprised people still buy cookbooks. I came across one for blueberry bread that uses grated orange rind, which we have a lot of. Last year Betsy cut the rind from some oranges and preserved it in her dehydrator.
The blueberries are ripening well, so I went outside and picked two cups worth, washed them and set them aside. Because the orange rind is dry and in longish pieces, I cut it up as fine as I could to make 2 tsp, then soaked it for 30 minutes in 1 cup of orange juice. Meanwhile, I melted 4 Tbsp of butter in a half cup of boiling water, then added the orange juice and rind. I beat 2 eggs and then rebeat them with 2 cups of sugar (I would use less if I were making this just for ourselves, but it’s for a church coffee hour). Then I mixed together 4 cups flour, 2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda and 1 tsp of salt. I added all the ingredients together, put the batter in five small loaf pans and baked for 70 minutes at 325 degrees.
This recipe is interesting to me not only for the orange rind but also because I had never melted butter in boiling water before, and am not accustomed to baking at anything below 350 degrees. I also love to use orange juice in cooking; it’s the secret ingredient in the squash and mushroom soup that I make (the recipe is from the Moosewood cookbook).
Today also marked the first time this summer that I have sprayed my tomato plants with a copper fungicide called Soap Shield (made by Gardens Alive!). I’m doing this today because we’re in for another humid, rainy spell that could provide the appropriate conditions for late blight, which is the bane of every Northeast tomato grower. This stuff is a preventative, and I’ll spray it about every seven to 10 days through August. I put on goggles and wrapped a handkerchief around my nose and mouth, and wore rubber gloves, then took a shower afterwards.
Who knows? Maybe late blight will come early this year.