Gardening is just the most amazing thing. I’m always in awe watching what comes up out of the dirt after there was nothing weeks ago. We planted rainbow chard again this year – I love it. It’s inspired me to highlight seasonal selections from my garden and local farm stands this summer. Does anyone belong to a CSA share (Community Supported Agriculture)? Having your own garden can be a bit like that: I have this box (or garden in my case) of produce, now what do I do? Well, we ate a LOT of salads last week! As I’ve said before…the garden/nature doesn’t wait. That’s also the beauty of a garden or CSA: you have to deal with your bounty. It inspired me to think about and research different ways to enjoy eating our rainbow chard. Last year was the first time we grew it and ate it!
Next in the “Series of Sides”, this Autumn Slaw features raw brussels sprouts (yes!), radicchio and fennel. I resisted the urge to add more ingredients and was really pleased with the results. I already knew how the radicchio and fennel would taste, but wanted to see how the brussels sprouts would stand up to a simple dressing of olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
I spent this past weekend nesting. Something magical happens in autumn: leaves turn and the crisp, cold days become shorter. There’s a feeling. I often wonder if I lived in a tropical type climate with no seasons, would I yearn for things like warm sweaters, roasting meats and veggies, and getting the house comfy and cozy in preparation for being inside more?
In the June issue of Southern Living magazine, I spotted jicama in the list of ingredients in a watermelon salad and was intrigued. I’ve eaten jicama before and liked it, but never made anything with it, set out to buy it and when the sign at the grocery store read Jicama that’s what I thought I was buying. Wrong, it was a yuca (also known as cassava). I discovered this when I consulted YouTube to make sure I was dealing with the jicama properly and thought, “Whaaaaat? That looks nothing like the jicama I have!” After a little more internet research, I discovered I had a yuca in my possession and got back in the car to find…jicama. <sigh>
What is a wheat berry? Wheat berries are whole wheat kernels, full of protein, fiber and other vitamins and minerals, that look like brown rice and are easy to prepare: they’re boiled in salted water. Once boiled, they plump up a bit and become chewy and nutty, but not starchy. This is what they look like in their raw state: