Saturday, July 07, 2007

Optimistic Awe

You might think I'm describing the harvest of my terribly, terribly modest, miniature garden in terms of grandiose braggadocio.
I'm simply amazed that I can scrape up a few square inches of inferior sod, replace it with seedlings, and then eat the result.
Oh, and we've decided to save the sod scrapings to begin a compost pile. Freebie.
Yesterday we harvested some (admittedly overgrown) arugula leaves, along with a paltry handful of sorrel leaves.
Then the usual kitchen applications applied: oil, salt, chicken stock, garlic scapes, heat, cream, blender. Then cold buttermilk and a little time out in the fridge. All the ingredients except the salt were procured from within 100 miles.
We dined on a fragrant, peppery, funky soup that was not quite as Shreky as pure sorrel soup, less astringent than spinach soup and — glory — came from our own garden.
This is my paltry contribution to One Local Summer, a season of crafting at least one local meal a week. Because sometimes, I really do eat only a big, local bowl of soup for supper.


Vegan Knitting said...

That sounds really good! I could veganize it really easily. We love green soups and in the winter, I'd say at least a third of our dinners are just a bowl of soup with toast.

BTW - I must have the recipe for that Soba salad you made for Catherine's party. I think I had 4 helpings. It was just perfect! Is it yours or cookbook?

Liz said...

We've had a terrible year for arugula... the flea beetles devastated the first couple of rounds, and I've just about given up.

Your soup sounds lovely, especially since you grew some of it yourself. :)

Kalyn said...

Sounds good. I haven't had much luck growing arugula, although people tell me it's so easy. Mine gets too strong and it's nearly inedible. Too hot here maybe?

I just bought sorrel at the Farmers Market today. Love it!

dancing morgan mouse said...

Don't forget to add magic chook poo to the plot and the compost!

Zoomie said...

My beloved's daughter wraps arugula around fruit bites and covers the arugula with proscitto and that makes a dandy appetizer with a little argula zing between the sweet of the fruit and the salt of the ham.

Dagny said...

I just ate but suddenly I'm hungry again. So not right.

Monkey Wrangler said...

Sounds like you need to go collect more sea water and put that out in the yard to dry......

katiez said...

I have such an abundance of lettuce - due to our lovely cold rainy weather, that I'm going to try lettuce soup!
It's either that or import more slugs...maybe I could start a snail farm!

cookiecrumb said...

VK: I'm sure you could veganize it. It's really just a bowl of velvety leaves.
OK, the soba salad: Just wing it. The important thing is to rinse the noodles after you cook them. Then drain, and season with sesame oil and soy sauce. The grated vegetables and seaweed you toss in are up to you. Simple. :D

Liz: My arugula is preternaturally perfect, and this is the first time I've tried growing it. I don't know what a flea beetle is (hope I don't find out), but these leaves are completely green and intact.
Thank you for cruising by.

Kalyn: I suppose it could be the heat. Mine is pretty peppery -- but I like it.
Isn't sorrel neat?

DMM: Oh, yes, darlin'. Magic chook poo R us!

Zoomie: That is such a pretty idea. Oh. Must try some.

Dagny: You must have a tapeworm. :D

MW: I do still have my local Bolinas salt, but... I'm scared of it. Can I get a kayaking date?

Katie: I have a lettuce soup recipe for you. Oh, you probably already saw it on Sam's blog, but here it is.

Lannae said...

Congrats on lovely salad greens from your own yard! I am so impressed at your bounty for the short time you have lived in your home.

cookiecrumb said...

Lannae: It was scary easy! Thank you for noticing; it's only been two months and not-quite a week.

KathyF said...

The new gardeners turned up the little plots where I'd planted herbs. Damn them.

Oh well, all the rain we've had was hardly in their favor. I planted annuals today in their place. I guess I can eat impatiens.

cookiecrumb said...

KathyF: You think that's klutzy? I just pulled up a little carrot sprout, thinking it was a weed. Dicotyledon? What's that?
PS: I'm finding it safest to plant herbs in pots. When they get big they can go into the ground.

Chelee said...

Yum! I love a big bowl of soup for supper. They don't call them one pot meals for nothing.(:

Tea said...

Oh, how lovely. I'm going to try and see if I can get some arugula going this summer. There may just be enough time left.

I love your new house and garden!

Ed Bruske said...

I'm missing my arugula and mustard greens. But now I notice that some of it is coming back, individual plants that are much healthier and--well, bigger. I think I made a mistake this spring planting greens too close together, or not thinning them...

cookiecrumb said...

Chelee: Yeah, I should have titled this blog the Soup Kitchen. (But that would miss the point about my existential anger.)

Tea: I think in your climate you should be fine. We started from teeny-tiny seedlings, BTW, not seeds.
And the pleasure was going out, snipping several handfuls, and then making supper. Wow.

Ed: This is my first time growing arugula, so it must be beginner's luck. I'm fastidious about pinching off flowerheads. I *know* they're planted way too close, but I "thin" by harvesting the outer, crowdy leaves.
Good luck.

Susan said...

I'm jealous of your garden grow sorrel. I love it's light, citrusy flavor in salads and sauces.

cookiecrumb said...

Susan: I finally got a sorrel plant two years ago; it's in a pot (otherwise, I'm told, it takes over the garden). I was *thisclose* to pulling it out today and repurposing the pot... but I didn't.
Thanks for the vote of confidence.
--So. San Diego? What up wid dat?--
Go grow some sorrel in a pot.