Monday, August 17, 2015

Wisconsin Barns and Summer Squash Recipe

 August 15, evening light
Hay field along the Poor Farm Road
Barron County

Our shortcut to Barron is to turn right at the chiropractor's office onto the Poor Farm Road, which is a straight shot to Salem Lutheran Church, to Highway 8, or to the Barron Hospital, depending. The Barron County Poor Farm is, or rather was, located just before you get to Barron.


"It was 1884 when the County decides they should look after the poor, they bought land and built buildings on the southeast edge of Barron, it was called the poor farm. In 1885 $2000 was appropriated to build the buildings; The Barron County History of 1922 stated that, “Improvements have since been made from time to time until the County now has a pretty modern alms house, adequate barns and sheds, and a well cultivated farm, excellently stocked and admirably equipped.”  - The rest of the brief article can be found HERE.

Tractor and Rake
Same hay field
Different angle, missing out on that golden light

I took the barn photos on the way home from Eau Claire, when we took a slight detour into the lovely, hilly countryside west of Bloomer. It's full of picturesque old barns, beautiful hillsides, and sand mines.

The collage is of produce from our garden. I picked the lavender and dried it in the dehydrator. I had forgotten what a mistake that was. Next time, and I do have another small 'crop' to pick after it blooms, I will pull out the plants and hang them upside down in the corner of the kitchen. I think that will dry them just as well and better preserve the beauty of the blossoms.

Quick and Easy Summer Produce Dinner

Of course, the summer squash and zucchini that we've been waiting for months to taste, come on incredibly suddenly, and in a matter of a few days there's way too much of both. But they do make a tasty, light summer evening meal when combined with peppers and tomatoes fresh from the garden, onion (not from the garden because I have no success with raising onions), garlic, black olives, and a red potato.

Just in case anyone is interested, this is what I tossed together:

Summer Squash, Zucchini, & Tomato Stirfry Recipe:

Smallish yellow crookneck squash (2), cut into chunks
Smallish zucchini (2), cut into chunks
One large onion, cut into chunks
1 fresh green pepper, seeded, cut into chunks
optional: part of a jalapeno, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 small red potato, skin on, julienned
1 or two fresh tomatoes, skin on
1 can black olives, drained
Parmesan cheese
Salt, Pepper
McCormick Mediterranean seasoning 
Dash of cayenne (if the jalapeno isn't used)

Actually, I had some leftover beef roast, so I had cut that into thin strips and sauteed them, along with the onion and garlic and pepper(s), in a couple T. olive oil.  When the vegetables were somewhat translucent, I added the other ingredients, except for the seasonings, and stirfried it all together just until the zucchini and squash were hot, slightly cooked, but certainly still having some serious and crucial crunch to them.

Once everything is hot, I sprinkled it with salt and pepper, some Perfect Pinch by McCormick, a wee bit of heat from cayenne, and Parmesan cheese.  I loved it. I don't think that Mr. C. was a huge fan, however. Oh well. I ate the leftovers for lunch the next day. Even better. 

Hog Panel Fencing



(on Thursdays)

Also linking to


Sneeze Art
I wonder if this is how Jackson Pollock got started.

Jazzie, doing her bit toward kitchen clean-up

This post is also linked to





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Have a wonderful Monday, friends!


MadSnapper said...

it is a good thing Jackson Pollock did not have a Jazzie around, his paintings might not look the same. the sneeze art does look just like a painting. i love the golden light in the first shot and the barns are wonderful. i always thought going to the poor farm was just a saying. now i know there really was one.

eileeninmd said...

Good morning, I love that first golden light shot of the field. The barns are wonderful. And your grandson is just adorable, I think he is an artist in the making. Your pup is cute! The mea sounds delicious, I love the veggie dish! Happy Monday, enjoy your new week!

camp and cottage living said...

Now that is a generous county and a goodly sum for 1885! The barn is one I'd like to pick up and place in my back yard.
Darling g'son!

Vicki @ lifeinmyemptynest said...

That squash recipe looks so good - thanks for sharing!

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

Love your country scenes and little cutie pie there and the stir fry sounds delicious!

Stephanie said...

Good morning, lovely lady! That first picture of the hayfield took my breath away with its beauty - it reminded me of a calm, peaceful moment.

And your stirfy sounds delicious! Thanks for the recipe. Happy Monday, Judy!

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

Your photos are always lovely, Judy. The first one is gorgeous. I love seeing all the old barns and scenery in your part of the world. The grandson sneeze is so funny. Reminds me of Mythbusters we watched last evening! Also, I do think you have the most beautiful garden produce. Your stirfry is making my mouth water. Enjoy your day. ♥

Debby Ray said...

I love the image of the golden sun shining on the hay...such a glorious time for photo taking. Your produce collage is making me hungry...nothing as beautiful as the colors of fresh produce. I made a stir-fry similar to yours, only adding mushrooms and sausage crumbles to mine...some grated parm in good! Happy Monday :)

Margaret Birding For Pleasure said...

I am laughig at the sneeze art! Love the evening light on the farming scenes.

Debby@Just Breathe said...

Lovely barn. Thank you for the recipe, it looks and sounds delicious!

Terri D said...

Your post made me smile all the way through it! Great photos, and your 'concoction' looks and sounds delicious!

Lowcarb team member said...

Your summer produce meal looks lovely ...

Great photo's too - especially the sneeze art, made me smile.

Have a good week.

All the best Jan

Brenda Kay Ledford said...

These are great photos. I love old barns and you have magnificent barns in your part of the country. Your summer produce looks lovely.

Sylvia said...

Judy, I love the light on the straw bales in the field. That is a great picture.
Sylvia D.

Gayle said...

'Sneeze Art' - perfect.
Absolutely love red barns.
'Poor Farm' - haven't heard the term in ages. I have a whole family story about the one here in days of old.

Deb said...

The colour of that barn is lovely. It's pretty close to what we chose for the carriage house. I seriously have to photograph some of our local barns. We have some beauties in this area; old and past their best before date. I always enjoy your barn shots. Aren't you lucky to have kitchen help. :) Deb

carrie@northwoods scrapbook said...

Such beautiful photos and love learning the history too.
And your garden bounty collage is so lovely!! Looks like great success to me. ;)
Your recipe looks and sounds so summery and delish too. Yum!
Love the sneeze art too. Lol! That gave me a laugh.
Blessings for a beautiful week Judy. xoxo

21 Wits said...

Thanks for including the recipe, it's just what I like. Fun and lovely photos of the family and good times at the farm!

Denise said...

appreciate the recipe.

Rose said...

I was just watching an episode of 3rd Rock from the Sun where Harry and Tommy were feeding a baby...this photo reminds me of them.

Love the sounds of you meal...I would leave out the black olives but everything else sounds delicious.

Love the should link to Tom's Barn Collective.

Judith @ Lavender Cottage said...

The golden glow of the hayfield in the first photo is stunning and a sure sign of autumn heading our way. I would enjoy your squash recipe - no meat thank you but my hubby would be asking where the meat was. Don't know why he can't eat a meatless meal. (sigh)
The sneeze art - seen plenty of it from the grands and wore much of it too. :-)
Thanks for linking to Mosaic Monday Judy.

Michelle said...

You have some great barn shots and I agree with Rose. Link up with Tom.

Carla from The River said...

Hi Judy,
Beautiful photos. I love the golden hay bales.
I did a post about, The Paine, On The Road Friday. :-)

Why was it a mistake to use the dehydrator with the lavender?
Thank you,

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

Your squash stir fry looks fantastic. Vine borers got into my summer squash, and I had to pull the lot of it :-(

Tired Teacher said...

I always marvel at how the sun creates such lovely golden hues this time of year. Your photo captured it well.

Anonymous said...

Lovely shots. I like the golden hay bales.

SImple and Serene Living said...

Really enjoy seeing all of the photos of the barns, and love the sneeze art. xo Laura

This N That said...

Love the sneeze photo...What better place for a dog than under a high chair? They seem to go together..

NCSue said...

Great shots!
Please come share at

Linda H said...

Oh I do love your "rural" photos. Your produce collage is lovely- makes me hungry! Your stirfry sounds delicious, I love that kind of dish. Men don't always like the combination of lots of ingds. I find... but you are right- more for those of us who love it! :)

TexWisGirl said...

we've got a poor farm in our county they have preserved. it was used up until the 70s, i think, for indigent and then incarcerated.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

I love that floor cleaner upper! I did a stirfrys tonight too... But farmers market produce of course! I love summer! We had poor frms on oregon too... In Portland one has been turned into a fancy resort with a winery and brewery on site and lots of fresh produce to eat in their restaurant. Kind of strange tho it seems to me to be enjoying all that bounty and pampering when you think of the history!

Magali@TheLittleWhiteHouse said...

Thanks for the recipe! I have lots of zucchinis in my garden this year!

podso said...

Sneeze art is adorable. I never tire of seeing the countryside where you live…such beauty in farmland. Your meal sounds smilier to ones I make "off the cuff." Easy and nutritious.

Donna said...

Judy that is my perfect harvest dinner...we make this all the time in summer varying it a bit. I now am hungry and need to put together a stir fry soon! In Italian we call it chumbaut! Enjoy....

Mary Howell Cromer said...

I love seeing those big round bales of hay and right now, they are everywhere scattered in my area as well, I also like when a Hawk, is hunting from one, or a Pheasant hops on top to see better~

Lorrie said...

Beautiful photos of the countryside in late summer. Hay bales come in all sizes and shapes. Love the garden produce - isn't it great to be able to pick a lot of what's for dinner? The sneeze photo makes me smile. We're looking after two grands this weekend and who knows (nose?) what's in store!

Ida said...

Love the rolled hay bales. Cool barn and silo's with that hog fencing.
Sneeze that's a new one. Messy but cute. Good thing the dog is there for cleanup duties.


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