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Waiting for spring ... and asparagus and rhubarb.

It's been another long, dreary, Michigan winter. We broke all records here for 'consecutive days without sunshine" and "record rainfall in january. " There is nothing more depressing than enduring a cold, grey, virtually sunless winter!

Oh how I've looked forward to Spring! Already I'm anticipating the first, tender, green spears of asparagus -- and the bright, red stalks of rhubarb -- fresh from our garden! My family and I enjoy much of our "Spring sprouts" fresh picked -- the rest of our crop is put in the freezer to savor later.

I'd like to share with you some of our favorite recipes for asparagus and rhubarb.

Cream of Asparagus Soup

1 large onion, chopped 1/2 cup margarine 2 pounds potatoes, pared and cut

into cubes water 2 pounds asparagus 1 can evaporated milk -- or 1-2/3

cup milk may be used salt and pepper to taste

Saute the onion in margarine in a large (4-quart) saucepan for about 2 minutes. Add the potatoes and just enough water to cover them; bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 20 mutes -- or until potatoes are very tender. Wash asparagus, discarding any tough ends, and break into 3-inch pieces. When the potatoes are tender, add the asparagus and a little more water if needed, then cook for 5 minutes. Remove vegetables from the at when asparagus is tender. Add the milk. Put some of the vegetables and broth into a blender, cover and whirl until smooth. Continue with remaining soup. Add salt and pepper to taste. Great warm or cold! This is also delicious using broccoli or cauliflower.

Rhubarb-Orange Crisp

1 cup butter or margarine 2 cups flour 2 cups rolled oats 1 cup brown sugar 1 teaspoon cinnamon 6 cups cut up rhubarb 1-1/2 cups sugar 2 cups orange juice

Mix together the first five ingredients until crumbly. Reserve two cups of mixture. Pat the remainder into the bottom of a 9 " x 13 " pan. Add rhubarb, sugar and juice. Top with reserved crumbly mixture and bake at 350 degrees for one hour.

Speaking of gardens... last summer I found what I think must be a "mutated" homed tomato worm in my tomato patch. Instead of the usual pale green coloring that I've always seen, this one was black. I only found one, but I can't help but wonder if any other gardeners have come across any of these "creepy critters"?
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Title Annotation:includes recipes
Author:Baughan, Loretta
Publication:Countryside & Small Stock Journal
Date:May 1, 1993
Previous Article:Why homesteaders have more fun.
Next Article:The simplest cracker recipe ever (and one of the best).

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