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Boston Vs. New York – Battle Apple Bread

Juuuust kidding. I know Boston and New York rivalries are way too dangerous to mess with. Even if it’s just apple bread. I won’t go there.

My best friend from home and I ended up making apple bread on the same night.  Over 200 miles apart and we somehow had the same idea. We realized this after telling each other about all the embarrassing things that had happened to us since we last spoke (it’s tradition). Then one of us said “Ok, gonna get back to baking” and the other said “me too!” Now, neither of us grew up doing too much baking or cooking (feel free to correct me if I’m wrong here Leigh). I mean, the last time Leigh cooked for me it was mac and cheese from a box in college. The last time I tried baking for her I think we ended up just eating cookie dough (most likely also from a box). But somehow, and without really ever talking about it, we’ve both started cooking. And somehow we both found our way to baking apple bread on a random Thursday night.

Here’s the recipe Leigh used for her Oatmeal Apple Bread from One Perfect Bite. I used Alana’s Apple Bread recipe from Eating From the Ground Up. Both came out great.

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admin - haha you made that mac and cheese in college – not high school. So nice try :-) We’ll have to have another bake-off to determine a winner. Watch your back Carloni.

Leigh - 1. I am a much better baker/cooker/chef/pretend chef, whatever you want to call me, now then I was when I was in high school!
2. Papa Carloni loved the bread- I thought it was a little blah..I would add more cinnamon next time.
3. I also wanted to add that I made a pork roast…Yes I, Leigh Carloni, made my very own pork roast with roasted veggies (sweet potatoes, onions and carrots)- GO ME!
4. So who won this battle of the cities eh?

Fall Garden Updates

There are two members of the family (or the “Zoo” as Michael says) who would prefer that we not shop with reusable bags. Drama and Georgie’s favorite days, are the forgetful days when Michael or I begrudgingly have to accept a shopping bag. On my way back from Alvin Ailey on Sunday, I remembered I needed to buy fertilizer. My bag was already full with a new duvet cover (thank you Harlem the cat for destroying our last one) and The Balcony Gardener (which I am already breaking into, despite the fact that Moby Dick still sits on my bedside table with only about 100 pages to go). Either way, I came home with a shopping bag and it was the best day ever for 2 out of three cats (Harlem couldn’t care less).

Georgie wanted to eat the whole thing and Drama wanted to strangle himself in the handles. Fun for all. Until I took it away so as not to anger PETA. They’ll probably dig it out of the recycling bin later anyway.

I had to get fertilizer because my radishes got their first “true leaves” last week! True leaves (the pointy furry looking ones in the middle of the seedlings below) will be the main organ for the plants’ photosynthesis from now on and are an indication of the seedlings maturing. Exciting sh*t. And as I learned from the Urban Organic Gardener, they also mean it’s time to give your soil a little food.  So I hit up PlantShed on the Upper West Side. I also couldn’t resist buying some spinach seeds! I stuck em right in with the radishes. I know, ambitious. But hey, the mum is about to bloom, the radishes are growing like mad – I’m feeling pretty good……Oh lord, radishes please don’t die.

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Eco-Friendly Faces

Sam and I hit up New Green City in Union Square last week. We switched over to Green Mountain Energy, learned about options for composting in the city,  harvesting rain water, and I signed up to get myself and Mike off any junk mail lists. I bought some more bulbs from the Certified Naturally Grown guys (not entirely sure where I’m going to put them, not much space left in the “garden”), and Sam bought some “I’m sorry” Mums for his boyfriend. Nothing like a Mum to smooth over conflict.

The best part of the event was getting to meet such friendly and passionate people – tons showed up, loads were volunteering, and I left New Green City feeling pretty good about our efforts as a community to be eco-friendly.

Here are some of the faces of urban environmentalism in New York City! Click their pictures to check out their cause.


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Fall at the Farmers Market


The Fort Washington Farmers Market, which I previously got very excited about here, is right on my way to work. Their evolving produce is just like watching leaves turn on trees. But much more fun! Here’s what I got just walking to a meeting…..

A Molasses and Walnut (oil free) Muffin – Body and Soul Baked Goods

Bok Choy – Central Valley Farm 

Apple Cider – Red Jacket Orchard


But there was so much more I wanted…..

I love Tuesdays!

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admin - That means a lot coming from such a talented photographer! Thanks!

John Wilpers - What GREAT photos, Abby! You’ve really got an eye! My favorite is the apple box with the radishes a close second!

Fire Escape Garden

This is the inaugural entry for the new focus of the blog – trying to be green in new york city. In learning to cook, I came to care more about my food and where it comes from. We joined a CSA, started trying to buy organic products, and with each step we took towards being more conscious, I found there was another step we could take.The green community in this city is a vast network of farmers, bakers, volunteers, entrepreneurs, students, CEOs, activists…you name it. It really makes you think about all the ways you can be conscious of your environment, even living in a metropolis like new york.

Food and cooking are fantastic gateway drugs to going green. So while the blog will continue to have a strong focus on food, I want to expand into other areas that just as challenging AND rewarding to tackle. Such as urban gardening! I have a feeling this might air on the side of Trouble. But hopefully there will be some Joy too.  Either way, it’s about the effort.

So here’s to radishes, mums, Daffodil and Hyacinthus bulbs, and the Urban Organic Gardener. This guy is hysterical. If you ever wondered what it would be like if one of the cast of the jersey shore became a horticulturist, this is it. He knows his stuff.

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Eco-Friendly Faces » Considerable Trouble & Considerable Joy - […] Grown guys (not entirely sure where I’m going to put them, not much space left in the “garden”), and Sam bought some “I’m sorry” Mums for his boyfriend. Nothing like a Mum to […]

Carolyn Cowen - Beautiful composition and color. Fun content and writing. Can’t wait to follow you on your new blogging adventures!