Friday, August 12, 2016


Late winter finds me flipping through seed catalogs, dreaming of my summer garden. In early spring, I can't wait to plant the first peas and radishes. Once the weather warms, I go all out, planting cucumbers, tomatoes, green beans, okra, an assortment of squash, two kinds of potatoes and a bunch of herbs. Early summer, I mostly just admire how beautiful the garden looks.

But now, I spend my days dealing with the consequences of earlier efforts. The harvest (and the weeds) grow exponentially by the day.

I haul in buckets of squash, zucchini, and cucumbers.

My basil turns into bushes and I scramble to turn the bushes into pesto.

Carrots, beets, shallots, onions and garlic are eager to be pulled from the earth, but then demand that I do something with them. The pumpkin and sweet potato vines are out of control -- like things from Little Shop of Horrors.

Just this week, the tomatoes are beginning to redden. The first few off the vine are celebrated with fanfare. But then the pace quickens, and I'm left to find creative ways to use hundreds and hundreds of tomatoes. (There are only so many BLTs that our family can consume.)

I'm not really complaining. There is nothing more that I love than going out to the garden and seeing what can be turned into dinner.  Tonight we are feasting on a Nicoise Salad, which uses up the last of the green bean harvest, some tiny new potatoes, a handful of cherry tomatoes and some lettuce before it bolts. It's topped with a grilled tuna steak and garnished with eggs cheerfully provided by friend Jackie's hens.

My garden work is made easier these days with help from Jack, thankfully home from China.

And he's quite appreciative of his mama's cooking. Makes it all worthwhile.

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