Tomato Basil Pie

I can’t believe we haven’t posted this before!

If you have tomatoes and basil, it’s a MUST!

Tomato Basil Pie

By David Lusk (adapted from a dish served at a restaurant in Austin, TX)

One pie shell

1 egg

1 Tbs. Flour

½ cup milk

2 cups basil leaves, coarsely chopped

3-5 ripe larger (1 lb +) tomatoes

4-6 slices mild white cheese (provolone, mozzarella)

½ cup grated parmesan cheese

Salt and pepper to taste


1 cup flour

½ cup butter

1 tsp salt

½ cup cheddar cheese

¼ to ½ tsp. ground red pepper (More if you like more spicy).

Make a crumb crust topping by mixing above ingredients with a pastry knife. Set aside.

Whisk egg with flour and milk, set aside.

Slice tomatoes in 3/8 to ½” slices and place one layer in bottom of pie shell. Salt and pepper to taste. Cover with a generous layer of basil leaves. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Drizzle about a 1/3rd of the egg mixture on the leaves. Place a layer of sliced cheese. (if you like cheese, make it cover the whole pie, if not just tear up the slices and cover so each piece will have some cheese.) Repeat layer. Top final layer with tomatoes, basil, parmesan, and egg mixture. Add topping.

Bake at 350ºF for about 50 to 55 minutes. You may have to put a foil cap on the top to keep the topping from getting too brown.

Dogs, Goats, Ranch on a Fall Morning

Last week we had some wonderful rain, and Fall arrived this week. Morning walks with the goats and dogs are full of moist, fragrant, cool air and the animals seem more energetic. Really beautiful right now. Here are some photos from this morning and one dog video.

  • a garden, windmill and barn with blue sky in trees in background
  • A small pond with trees and sky reflected in it.
  • Two Anatolian Shepherd dogs by a gate
Dogs at play

Heather and the 40lb Watermelon

Heather hefts the 40lb Congo

This variety, Congo, gets big. I have one more this size not quite ripe yet. Of course, I can’t lift it (due to the rotator cuff surgery), so Heather did it for me.

Aren’t organic melons $3.99 / lb. Hmm, think I can sell it for $160? 🤣🤣

You can see some of David’s tomato bounty there, too.

Heather has been here a few days to help us again. We had an absolutely beautiful day yesterday. David and Heather declared it a “GSDD” (get shit done day). Heather also canned her first batch of pickles, among a long list of other accomplishments, like 20 batches of pesto, weeding, tilling, picking, etc.

Here’s what the day looked like. Almost seemed normal — cool, clear wonderful air.

Jalapeño Poppers

Now that the heat wave is over, we fired up a little Jalapeño heat and heat from the grill. Appropriate cool provided by my signature pomegranate margaritas.

Here’s what you need:

For the poppers:

  1. A special rack for the grill
  2. A pepper coring tool (to remove insides and leave only the pepper shell)
  3. Cream cheese, chopped mushrooms and other optional ingredients (we used dried tomato powder)
  4. A frosting bag (like used for icing a cake — to dispense the cream cheese into the poppers)
  5. Medium-sized Jalapeños

For the margaritas (this makes nine, 8 oz servings on the rocks — adjust proportions as needed):

  1. 12 oz tequila (Añejo preferred)
  2. 6 oz triple sec (60-proof if available)
  3. 3 oz Grand Marnier
  4. 6 oz limeade concentrate (frozen)
  5. 24 oz fresh pomegranate juice
  6. salt and lime for rim of glasses if desired

Slideshow demonstration:

  • a serrated, spiral knife
  • serrated coring tool inserted into jalepeno pepper
  • a cored jalepeno with a few seeds showing
  • a bowl with a mixture of cream cheese and chopped mushrooms
  • 19 cored jalepeno peppers in a rack with cream cheese filling being put into them
  • a top-down look at cored peppers filled with cream cheese
  • Jalapeños on a rack with filling and bacon over the top
  • A filled jalapeño rack ready to grill
  • Rack of stuffed jalapeños on the grill
  • Roasted jalapeño poppers ready to eat on the grill
  • A dish of enchiladas, roasted jalepeno peppers and pomegranate margaritas

Okay, We’ll Talk About the Weather

It’s HOT!

Note: cooler inside because we ran the house fan from 4:00 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. and it was 64 outside

We laughed to ourselves this evening because even if we did have an AC, CA wouldn’t want us to run it right now!

We have the pool.

The animals are having the worst of it, especially the rabbits and turkeys. Goats roll with it. Cattle seem fine. Dogs find water or shade, but the old guy is NOT happy.

I was going to post a picture of Junior! and some of David’s canned tomatoes, but I guess you’ve seen canned tomatoes and a five-month old calf before, right?

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