View from the deck on a glorious morning in early June.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Thanksgiving 2008. Living with the Wheel, and a kitchen brag.

The children are long grown and doing well, my Old Dutch and I settled in a peaceful routine. No drama, no soap opera, no clawing our way up any career ladder. Just daily life with some part time money earning endeavors.
The heart of my life is really just deeply experiencing Nature's Wheel. As mentioned before, ask me how I am, and you get a weather report. For some people it would be the most abhorrent boredom, but I find it totally satisfying. The picture was taken on Friday October 10, on a walk in the neighborhood. After more than 30 years I still walk around full of wonder and amazement that I have been allowed to live my life here.

A report of the season just past. Spring was icy, the worst we have ever seen. But once it started in mid-June the summer was quite pleasant. The weather was a bit more changeable than we are used to here.

In these deep valleys weather has a tendency to get stuck. Whatever it's doing, it doesn't know when to quit. You welcome the ending of a drought, but then it pours for three cold weeks. Or you enjoy the coming of beach weather, but the next thing you know the woods are burning.

This year we saw an alternation between sun and rain that made the gardens grow and saved the woods from burning. The end of August was disgusting, but we got some nice weeks in September to make up for it. All in all a good season. I had a bumper crop of raspberries and took the trouble to freeze the best ones on a tray, so they stay separate. The blueberries are store bought.
  Just layering the berries in a tall glass with Olympic's Organic French Vanilla Yogurt makes the most delicious desert. We had it for Thanksgiving yesterday. 

Thanksgiving is my favorite event of the year. Christmas is too much, and at that time of year I feel like hibernating anyway. TG is hype-free, and because I try to grow much of our food it means a lot. If the garden yields only one serving of a vegetable it gets served at this dinner. It is a way to honor the devas.

So here is my kitchen brag, served to an appreciative small party of neighbors.
Appetizer: zucchini and carrot sticks with dip, raw sliced Jerusalem Artichokes in vinaigrette. 
Homegrown of course.
Dinner: small store-bought turkey, I took a break from raising chickens this year. Stuffed with 4 whole bulbs of home-grown porcelain garlic, the garlic got mashed into the gravy.

Stuffing made with bread crumbs from the crusts I can never throw away and keep in a bag in the freezer, sage and onion from the land, lovage from the land, small tomatoes from the market.

Parsnips from the farmers' market roasted together with the bird. YUM.

Green and wax string beans, the only baggies from the garden. It was not a good year for beans.
The weather turned cold and rainy just as they were ripening.
Salad of finely chopped young kale leaves with grated carrots and finely chopped multiplier bulbs, the rest will be planted for next spring. For some reason I grow great multipliers and garlic, but ordinary onions and leeks don't like me. Kale and I have a love affair going.

Desiree potatoes. Nice variety with red skin and yellow flesh. We got about 100 pounds of spuds, excellent year for them. Plenty of parsley to sprinkle wherever.

Apple sauce from one of the volunteer trees.

Desert: I cheated and bought the pie crusts. Pumpkin pie with pumpkin from my market buddy Colette, yogurt and homegrown raspberries.

All in all a nice little feast, and today is the best: leftovers!

A special quote for this day:

You ought to be Thankful,
a whole heaping lot
For the places and people
You're lucky you're not

Dr. Seuss


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