Overwhelming Harvest

It’s been such a busy week, I still haven’t had time to deal with all these goodies. The potatoes are still in the bowl in the pantry, cool and dark; carrots have been topped and put in the fridge unwashed, until I decide whether to can or soup or what them; the little green cherry tomatoes have been pickled!

Scarlet runner bean seeds remain in the bowl on the counter; they’re not really edible, and will go back in the ground next spring to provide gorgeous red blossoms for the hummingbirds. Yes, I’ll put them away soon, in a jar in the pantry. And the colander full of arugula is all made into pesto, both walnut and macadamia nut. Going out in mid-October and harvesting six cups of arugula is a delight I had not anticipated. The caterpillar greenhouse Katrina built for me is providing yummy results already. This afternoon I harvested cilantro for the chicken-tomatillo-cilantro enchiladas I’m serving guests tonight. Spinach and mustard greens grow slowly, and next spring’s carrots and beets are full of leaves. A row of parsley divides the winter greens from the spring root crops. I have never been so content with my yard.

Carrots out of the ground, sun drying for a few minutes before going into the basket, into the house.

My pantry, a pale echo of Connie’s, but the most food I’ve ever canned in one year. From left, tomato paste, pickled jalapeños, marinara, and the yummy pickled green cherry tomatoes. I can’t wait to open a jar of those!

Onions and garlic from the Small Potatoes Farm, peppers from Katrina, parsley, basil and thyme from my garden, all simmering on the burner next to the tomato purée squeezed with Cynthia’s hand-crank food saucing appliance: romas from Small Potatoes, big juicy slicers from Dawn’s garden.

Guitarist Michael Gulezian plays by candlelight while I craft the marinara for a spaghetti dinner the next night. To hear more or less what that sounded like, check out some of his videos on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UqQKfvbsp-8

The threat of industry changing the face of our valley brought many disparate people together. Michael contributed to the scrapbook I made, and in the summer I heard him play and met him. We didn’t have much chance to talk. He lives in Tucson, and was passing through the North Fork on his way home after recording a new CD in Fort Collins, so he stopped by to visit. A lovely couple of evenings ensued with great music, friends, and food.

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