Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Return of Zucchini

Greetings, long lost friends! Where do the months go?

Suddenly, it's summer again. I'm pretty sure I say that every summer but every year it seems that summer has a way of sneaking up on me. Kind of like these squash. You plop the starts into the ground, splash a bit of water, turn your attention elsewhere for a short period of time, and boom, the squash have taken over. Growing faster & more plentiful than we can eat them. But oh, do we eat them. And share them. One of my favorite ways of enjoying fresh zucchini is to shave it thin and eat it raw in a salad, something like this. That recipe doesn't call for it, but it's also good with a sprinkling of arugula and shaved parmesan. And of course, squash are always a good addition to pasta!

And when we weren't looking, when we weren't even paying much attention to the garden back in the winter & spring, somehow, this purple cabbage just sprung up of its own accord. The magic of the garden never fails to amaze and inspire me!

Lastly, I have to post this guide for a salad that we ate a lot of in the spring. I don't really have a recipe because I've mostly improvised, but it's very adaptable to the season and to whatever ingredients you have on hand. It starts with your favorite grain. Mostly I've used cooked quinoa. Mix a couple cups of cooked, cooled grain with a handful of sliced radishes, 1 or 2 thinly sliced scallions and one or two carrots, grated. When snap peas were in season, I'd take a few handfuls of those, and steam them for 3 to 4 minutes just to slightly cook them, and plunge into ice water to stop the cooking. Then dry them well and slice them into 1/2 inch pieces, not worrying if the peas pop out of the pods - just wipe the whole mess into the bowl with the quinoa & other vegetables, and dress with your favorite vinaigrette and a sprinkling of fresh herbs.

Pretty soon it will be time for tomatoes, I can hardly wait! Until then, be well, friends!