Friday, June 05, 2009

'WITH EVERY LEAF A MIRACLE' (HOSTA HEAVEN) ~ SOFT-SHELL CRAB SANDWICH with LEMON TARTER SAUCE

" … with every leaf, a miracle. "

~ Walt Whitman


HOSTA HEAVEN


HEAVENLY COMPANIONS
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SOFT-SHELL CRAB SANDWICHES
~ Favorite when 'heavenly' soft-shell crabs are in season ...
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6 cleaned jumbo soft-shell crabs
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup crushed saltine crackers
coarse salt & freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup vegetable oil
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
6 soft good bakery rolls
sliced tomato
sliced avocado
lemon wedges
  • Cover crabs with buttermilk in large shallow ceramic/glass baking dish and refrigerate for 1-4 hours.
  • Blend cracker crumbs with salt & pepper.
  • Heat oil in large skillet until shimmering. Remove crabs from buttermilk and shake off excess. Add butter to oil and, when it stops sizzling, dredge half of crabs at a time in crumbs. Fry (undersides up) in skillet, turning once, until cooked through and crisp, about 4 minutes per side; adjust heat if oil gets too smoky.
  • Set crab on bun, top with tomatoes and avocado and serve with lemon wedge on side. (6 servings)
LEMON TARTER SAUCE

1/2 cup regular or light mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1/3 cup drained chopped sweet pickle relish
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp. grated lemon zest
pinch sea salt
Combine all ingredients early and chill to blend flavors.
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HOSTA (Plantain Lily)
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GARDENER'S NOTE: Heavenly leaves, prized for their lush foliage, color (green, ivory, yellow, chartreuse, bluish green, gold, creamy white), and interest are one of the most loved and dependable perennials for Michigan gardens (one of the best 'Gold Standard' was introduced by my hosta mentor, the late delightful Pauline Banyai of Royal Oak, whose garden I was thrilled to visit by her side.) Once established, theses hardy, fairly drought tolerant plants make attractive edging plants, ground cover and as woodland plants combine beautifully with ferns, wildflowers, astilbe and other light or partial shade plants. Slugs may be a problem but ... not in Hosta Heaven!

18 comments:

nancybond said...

Your photo collages are beautiful, as always. And your recipe for the tartar sauce looks simple, but delicious. The best kind. Thanks, Joey and enjoy your weekend.

Cameron (Defining Your Home) said...

Wonderful hosta collage! Are all of those growing in your gardens? Gorgeous!

Cameron

Patsi 'Garden Endeavors' said...

Wonderful hostas. Can't get enough.
Love to see a full bed.

joey said...

Thanks Nancy ... simple is good! I also love soft-shell crabs, patiently waiting each year for a memorable taste. At the lake, anticipating another stunning sunset ... Happy weekend :)

Yes Cameron, these beauties are all mine! I have been an avid collector for years, never having enough!

Thanks Patsi ... I hear you. I'm an addict! Love painting the garden with awesome hosta.

Jan (Thanks For 2 Day) said...

Joey! Sisters-in-Sprains!! I noticed Brenda's laid up with a knee sprain, too;-) It must be the month for it? Well, I hope yours is getting better; it sure is a pain in the you-know-what to be limited in mobility, isn't it!!?

Your beds filled with hostas are incredibly gorgeous! I love hosta and have them in my back gardens where its shady. They do well here, even in warm weather...as long as they get mostly shade. I love your collages, as I always do;-) In fact, I'm at the point where I'm mostly posting collages because I can't get Blogger to upload photos and place them individually, 1 after another, on my blog without adding lots of extra space in between and making it doubly (triply) difficult to finish the post!! I'm finding that making collages w/Picasa is lots of fun and enjoyable for me.

Have a wonderful weekend! Be careful w/that ankle. PS Is it your Left or Right? Mine is my left, which is a good thing...I can drive my car, even with the 'boot' on;-)

joey said...

Indeed 'sisters in sprain', Jan (I know, poor Brenda's leg does not look pretty either) ... it's my left diggin'/dividin' foot that never seems to get a rest twirlin' hostas/perennials here & there. Regarding collages, I have so much going on, I enjoy posting many faces of a blooming flower and short intros to my monthly garden. Bloggers have so much to see that it seems to be an answer for quick visits about what's happening in different zones and compare gardens ... also keeps me on top of what's growing in my garden from one year to the next. Let's get well soon ... air casts and boots are not attractive :) June gardening hugs!

Nutty Gnome said...

Hi Joey, hope your ankle is begining to feel better now - I was thinking about you last night as I sat there with an ice pack on my ankle having tweaked it (again!) by overdoing the crawling round on hands and knees trying to get the weeding done before the rain hit!(I failed!)

How's your daughter's torn meniscus and Mr. Ho-Hum's torn rotator cuff and herniated discs?:(
Sounds like your family are really in the wars at the moment.

At least you can gaze out at your beautiful hosta collection - they look fantastic! :)

joey said...

How kind of you to inquire, Nutty. Much better but must be careful today ... at the lake with much to do tending/weeding beds/washing & replacing porch screens (in process of having cottage/decks stained) and it's VERY hilly. Daughter has apt on Tues to read MRI and now managing well in her own home (though we had a family weeding fest last weekend). As I write, Mr. Ho-Hum is blowing the decks which is not helping his painful back/arm/disposition :)

My Mother's Garden said...

Oh, these hosta leaf collages are incredible! So beautiful!

Sylvana said...

I love hostas. I am always on the lookout for new ones to add to my collection. I am envious of yours and will be scouring through them for ideas. I have Gold Standard - one of my favorite!

Sylvana said...

Oh! I want names!

Gail said...

Joey, Hello! The garden photos are delicious! ...and the glimpse I get into your garden lets me see how wonderful it is. I am glad to hear you are doing better and your daughter? gail

Chuck Dilmore said...

just beautiful!

Roses and stuff said...

Hi Joey, I've only recently come to love Hostas. It's amazing how many varieties there are. -Your collages are lovely
Katarina

joey said...

Thanks Mother's Garden ... I adore hostas and have had fun 'hosta' painting in my garden for many years.

Welcome Sylvana! Shame on me for not including all the names of my fav hostas. Trust me, start with the basic 'musts' and then add on. But BEWARE ~ it will become a life-long passion.

Hi Gail ... all is well. Home from lake with much ahead in this full week before we return back to address many issues there. Tues will tell MRI with daughter ... thanks for asking, dear friend ;)

Thanks Chuck ... how is the book coming! Can't wait to read your published copy.

Oh dear Katarina, thank you ... there are so many wonderous hostas ... where to begin ... with the basics and then add ... to your heart desires!

Blackswamp_Girl said...

Joey, wow... these little "macro" glimpses of your garden are so inspiring! I am glad to know that no slugs visit your Hosta Heaven. :)

By the way, sorry to hear about your sprain--and of course it has to be your digging foot! :( Get well soon! (((hugs to Joey)))

joey said...

Hugs dear Kim ~ I've missed you! Oh yes, no slugs :) I have been out at night with a flashlight and know how slugs love to party) I'm so sorry about your camera (I would be lost without mine and can imagine how you feel) and do hope you can work something out soon.

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Joey, I'm sorry I've not been visiting lately. I'm happy to see your post as I love hostas! However, perhaps sometime you'll spotlight a few of them (and label them, if possible)? :-) It looks as though you have some beauties!