peas

Growing pains

We've had an incredible Spring rise from the dirt here on Minnow Creek Lane -- the wisteria is in full bloom, arching over our stone patio.  The jewel pink roses I inherited have begun to blossom, and the blushing peonies have opened their pom pom eyes.  We've been eating gorgeous greens for over a month now - Bordeaux Spinach, with its red-wine stems, sautéed over toast and topped with a poached egg; Roquette Arugula pureed with walnuts, garlic, and parmesan for a refreshing pesto; French Sorrel gratineed with potatoes, cream and gruyere; baby Valmaine Romaine tossed in a mustard vinaigrette and topped with blackened Coho Salmon; Lacinato Kale stewed with shallots and finished with apple cider butter; baby Rainbow Chards with sesame soy glaze over soba noodles; and countless mixed green salads with garden radishes and a simple vinaigrette.  I'm thankful this season for the distraction of an armful of greens and thinnings.  Greens are good for the body, but lately, they've been feeding my soul.  

Don't put two balls in your mouth at the same time

I packed the last of the peas today.  An enormous unshelled bag yielded a meager 2 cups of tender green pearls.  It crossed my mind the whole 'grow your own pea' thing may be more work than it's worth, but then I pictured them dressed with butter on the Thanksgiving table, and looking perky in a February risotto, reminding me that spring will eventually come.  Not to mention the multiple pea adorned meals (pea carbonara with pancetta, pea & fava bean favenade, minty pea soup) we've already enjoyed.  They're worth the work.  So into the freezer they go, smothered by a vacuum seal, my new country woman "tool". Yes, a vacuum sealer.  I actually wished for such a thing for my birthday this year.  Toto, we're not in Manhattan anymore.  Last year my wish was to get the heck out of the city (silently, as I blew out the candle that rounded out our 'reconstituted emulsified codfish, raw razor clam with cinnamon oil, watermelon cum beef carpaccio" avant-garde meal at Mugaritz in Spain.  It was terrible.  At the height of gastronomic experience, all I wanted was something simple... to eat, and to live by).  I had no idea then, how fast we could make both happen.