Oranges in My Cocktails

I tried another cocktail recipe with that orange vodka that's distilled from Florida oranges...The vodka is called 4 Orange and it's distilled just up the road in Lake Alfred. The recipe for an "Orange Crush" is printed on a label that hangs from the bottle. This recipe is delicious and uses both mint and orange slices...two things I picked fresh from the garden 10n minutes before I made the cocktail. I think I'm going to search the Internet for a vodka dessert glaze/topping...what else can I make with vodka? I've cooked with cognac, wine, and Liquor before...next I will conquer a vodka recipe.

The cocktail was fun to make...and to tweak. You get to muddle...what's not fun about that?! Plus, since the recipe calls for mint, it gives me a chance to use my "Orange Mint" that I found in the Home Depot garden center a few years ago.

I highly recommend this cocktail...we tried a version with OJ instead of the fresh oranges, but it wasn't as good. We also tried adding some pomegranate juice.

Here's the best part about this cocktail...there's 20 oranges in every bottle...so this cocktail may actually improve your health :)

Next on the list is their cucumber-champagne cocktail. It is beautiful and sounds sooo refreshing. I just need to grow cucumbers now.
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Danielles Mediterranean Bean Salad From the Garden

I made a delicious garbanzo bean salad today with herbs from the garden. Recipe below. The eureka lemons in the garden still have a month before they will be ripe...I wish they would have been ripe enough to use tonight.
garbanzo bean salad from www.DanielleCopeland.com

Danielles Mediterranean Garbanzo Bean Salad Recipe

1 can garbanzo beans (drained, rinsed, drained)
.5 can diced tomatoes, drained (or use fresh tomatoes)
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
rosemary, finely chopped
thyme, finely chopped
oregano, finely chopped
salt and pepper
juice from half lemon
zest from half lemon
grated or shaved parm

mix all ingredients together and enjoy!

How to Propagate Rosemary

Here's a short article about how I propagate rosemary from a grocery store produce pack.
rosemary propagation from www.daniellecopeland.com
I stuck 6 springs of rosemary in a drinking glass for 3 weeks. The glass was placed on the kitchen counter and received lots of indirect sunlight. All but one of the sprigs died. The 6th sprig began growing roots from the bottom one inch of the stem. I have used this method of propagating rosemary before and had the same results. I don't know why, but only a few of the cuttings sprout roots.
rosemary propagation from www.daniellecopeland.com
To be honest, this sprig came from my veggie/herb garden, but you could also use grocery store springs to start your own plants. I'm also trying this same method with the bottom of green onions that I harvested from the garden. But again, you could easily use the bottom of grocery store scallions.

Other grocery store veggies/fruit that can be propagated:

potato (cut into 3-6 chunks and throw in a hole)
sweet potato (same)
onion (plant the bottom root section)
tomato (harvest the seeds)
pepper (harvest the seeds)
kiwi (harvest the seeds)
watermelon (harvest the seeds)
squash (harvest the seeds)
lemongrass (plant the bottom root section)
avocado (germinate and plant the seed/pit)
pineapple (plant the top section)
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Impatiens not good for South Florida Summer

Last week the "feels like" temps were in the hundreds. Usually about this time of summer, we need to replace our impatiens with more heat tolerant plants. My plan for this week is to replace the impatiens with portulaca.

Not much gardening going on these days. It's just so hot and the boat is calling me every weekend. Why dig in the dirt when you can be on the boat?!!!
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Vodka Distilled From Florida Oranges

I bought a new homegrown vodka tonight made right here in FLORIDA. It's called 4 Oranges and I found their website. It's pretty cool. I added mint and a lime from the garden and came up with a quazi Mojito.
4 oranges vodka distilled from oranges here in Florida
What's cool about this vodka is that it's distilled from oranges...not potatoes. It's not flavored with oranges...it's distilled from oranges. The company advertises that each regular size bottle is made from 20 oranges of 4 different varieties: parson brown, temple, hamlin, valencia. I grow valencia oranges in my backyard.

Here's a video about the brand of vodka called "4 Oranges" that recently ran on our local news station:

4 Orange Premium Vodka on WPTV from 4 Orange Premium Vodka on Vimeo.


Passion Flower Vine at Danielle's Garden

I planted this passion flower vine two months ago. It's grown up the house and is now spreading across the roof line.

I didn't think this plant would thrive, but it is. It faces due East, so it gets morning sun and is shaded by noon. Now that it's established, I'm giving it fertilizer so I can begin to see some amazing flowers.
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Boating in Stuart, FL

We went to a local park last weekend called St. Lucie Inlet Preserve State Park. It’s accessible only by boat. The boardwalk is 3,000 ft long, and it took a good 15 minutes to walk past two structures, through thousands of mangroves, and over a bridge. I wouldn't do it again, but it was nice one time. :)


We tied up the boat and after leaving a donation in the box, we headed to the shore.


Below: much of the walk from the intercoastal to the ocean looks like this.


This sign got me excited...what was around the bend...is it something I would be tempted to take???

Good plants?…drift wood?…


See the ground cover below that looks like straight lines of rope? They are railroad vines and are native to this area. They have pretty purple flowers and help prevent beach erosion. They are all over the dunes here in South Florida.


Below: we finally reached the beach…looks just like all the other beaches in town, except there were no people.

IMG_1960 IMG_1962 IMG_1969 IMG_1970

After the park, we hit the local sandbar near Sailfish Point. John used his new boat grill and made a delicious chicken sandwich.



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