Wednesday, June 29, 2011


“God Almighty first planted a garden; and, indeed, it is the purest of human pleasures.”

~ Francis Bacon

Purple Coneflower
(Echinacea purpurea)


~ Excellent summer salad slightly adapted from Guy Fieri (Food Network). Trust me, this will be a repeat!


4 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 cup chopped red onion
1/2 lb. bacon
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
3 Heads romaine lettuce, cut in 1/2 lengthwise
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
freshly ground black pepper to taste

  • Cook bacon in sauté pan until crispy. Remove, blot grease, and crumble. Set aside.
  • Drain grease but do not clean pan. Add 2 Tbsp. olive oil and sauté onion until soft and caramelized. Add balsamic vinegar hand heat to boiling, scraping brown bits from bottom. Remove from heat.
  • Brush romaine lettuce with remaining 2 Tbsp. of olive oil, place on gill cut side down, and quickly sear.
  • Serve lettuce, cut side-up, and drizzle the balsamic dressing over the lettuce. Sprinkle with blue cheese, cracked pepper, and garnish with crumbled bacon. (6 servings)
Note: Original recipe called for sautéing bacon with the onion. I prefer the crumbled crisp bacon on top instead of in the dressing.

Rose (June Flower of the Month)
'Carefree Beauty' Shrub Rose

White Coneflower
(Echinacea 'Big Sky')

Monarda didyma
(bergamont, scarlet beebalm, scarlet monarda, Oswego tea, crimson beebalm)



Colleen said...

Gorgeous photos, as always, Joey. The recipe sounds so delicious (yet simple!) -- I will definitely be trying it!

imac said...

Beautiful Artistic work Joey.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Joey, the garden looks wonderful! I just had a salad today with blue cheese so anything that incorporates it is a favorite.


Kala said...

Gorgeous photos Joey - I love the white coneflower! June is my favorite month and I don't want it to end.

Rose said...

Your garden looks like a paradise in June, Joey! The rose may be flower of the month, but the coneflowers captivate me this time of year.

Hope you are enjoying a wonderful weekend at the lake--have a happy Fourth!

Curbstone Valley Farm said...

I'm gripping onto June until the bitter end, I'm not quite ready for July! Where did the spring go? Oh well, I'm sure there will be wonderful encounters in the gardens in July too ;) Your grilled romaine sounds fabulous...I've grilled endive, but never grilled romaine before.

joey said...

Thanks Colleen. Enjoy. Can you believe it's July!!! Let's enjoy :)

Thanks fun imac :O) I too enjoy your creative eye!

A blue cheese lovee, think you might enjoy this Eileen. Thank you and happy July gardening :)

June has been stellar in the garden, Kala. I hate to say goodbye but July too offers many gifts. Let's enjoy and keep cameras near. Thank you dear friend.

I thought of you and this rose post, dear Rose. I must say, when home I must drag myself away from the garden/home that gives me great joy. Now here at the lake, I will again have to drag myself away from different beauty that too fills my heart with joy. Both beautitul, I am blessed. Happy July :)

The calendar page just flipped over as I write, dear Clare. It's July! I held tight too, as best as I could to June and May, my two favorite months. I think you will enjoy this ... with or without the bacon, I love it!

tina said...

That hosta is so big! Every time I see my sweet woodruff I think of you and hope mine spreads like yours has. Your mosacis rock!

Muddy Boot Dreams said...

Farewell June, and a stunning recipe, along with gorgeous flower shots to say goodbye to you.

Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams

sweetbay said...

You always have the most beautiful collages.

Rick said...

A very nice tribute to June, joey ! You expressed it so well with that first coneflower photo - it's slipping away, just as June has. Also loved your June garden collage - so many greens ! We wait so long for spring, and then whoosh, it's gone before we've had enough time to savor it.

joey said...

Thanks sweet Tina. I do have lots of Sweet Woodruff ... a spring favorite :)

Thanks, dear Jen. Where did June go :( I'm hangin' on tight to summer :)

Sweetbay, you are a dear. Thank you.

Thanks Rick. And now it's July! Praying it takes it good sweet time ... hate to flip those calendar pages!