With a breath of gratitude I dig up the last of the plantings from 2012. The vernal equinox is sneaking up on us though experiencing the current weather patterns it is hard to believe it will ever arrive. Even with these late freezes and the frozen precipitation blanketing the ground hardy greens and hidden tubers have survived to feed us well. Japanese turnips got baked; carrots found their way into soups, stew and salads; golden beets got tossed with lemon verbena vinegar, and watermelon radishes, well they needed was to be sliced and fanned out on a plate. No, we did not go hungry and moments-from-the-earth-freshness held sway even on the bleakest of days.
Now, we must turn to the future and plan upcoming feasts. The weekend coming will be labored, most likely producing sore muscles as we turn, rake, turn, rake the plot of earth that has so generously fed us. For it needs renewal, and a year’s worth of compost is ready to be relocated. Allowing the remnants and case-offs from daily feedings once again generating dinner. The coming weeks are the most difficult, not having the ability to head out the back door to forage though there are still foods put up to get us through this period of transition, and learning from last year’s mistake English peas are already sprouting in a spot earlier prepared for them.
Readying for the warm-up, trays filled with fine soil are being kept moist and cozy with an eagle eye looking for signs of life. These nascent plants are the promise of another year fulfilled and satisfied.
Citrusy Kale Salad – yields 4 to 6 servings
2 to 3 garlic cloves – roughly chopped
1/2-cup fresh lemon juice
½-cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
6-cups packed shredded kale (preferably Tuscan)
Place the garlic, lemon juice, oil, salt and pepper in the blender and process until smooth.
Toss the lime mixture with the kale, and allow it to sit at room temperature for 1 to 2 hours before serving.