We began keeping a garden a few years ago and every year we add more. At our home we seasonally reap mangoes, avocadoes, papayas, coconuts, pineapples, all kinds of tomatoes, lettuce, kale, a variety of peppers, broccoli, bananas, sweet potatoes, yuca, allspice, thyme, rosemary, basil, key limes, calabaza squash, mulberries, longans, scallions and lemongrass.

It's a very satisfying hobby that pairs beautifully with a chilled glass of wine when the sun is setting.

Inspired by my childhood friend, Peggy and her husband Paul, in 2011 we also began keeping hens for the eggs. More and more people in compact suburban neighborhoods now keep hens as pets, and enjoy the benefits of fresh eggs at the table.

We aren't in Apocalypse mode. We just appreciate the entertainment of seeing what we can produce. Plus, we like being part of the real food movement.

We believe there is too much plastic in our diets, too much processing, too many hands touching, and not enough lingering. If you look into our grocery cart you won't find cereal, sodas, fruit juice or any bread with more than four ingredients. We keep cashews and V8 juice around for "fast food." We use the freezer for leftovers and to make ice. You won't find plastic-wrapped microwave meals (we don't actually have a microwave). You will find frozen vegetables (one ingredient frozen vegetables).

We focus on real food and opt for organic almost all of the time. It isn't more nutritious,

but without doubt it's better for our bodies, the ground and groundwater. With that said, our grocery bill is about 40% lower than it was before we began purging the non-organic frozen this and prepared that from the shopping list. Both Tom and I have lost considerable weight since those days as well.

We lack for nothing, eat well on ordinary stuff, and save money and calories while doing it.

What follows are some recipes, along with a few thoughts to inspire a meal plan. Easy is the theme at home. Complicated is for restaurants. These represent the growing collection of favorites at our table. Pour!

New! Baked Eggs. Just A Thought.

This easy prep, easy clean-up dish is so easy it's become a regular part of our morning routine No recipe required, this is what we do...

On Cutting A Mango Safely

Now, would someone please call Alton Brown and tell him to remove that ridiculous "Mango Cutting Lesson" from YouTube?

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