Summer has been cooler here than in prior years. So while tomatoes are really just starting to ripen and yield – finally!!!! – for real (a good 2 weeks past my usual tomato target date though), cabbage, kale (kale!!! in July! edible!) and lettuce greens are doing just well. On the other hand, the sweet potatoes are looking anemic, and the okra… well, we won’t talk about the okra. Frankly, there isn’t much to talk about!
Let’s talk instead about the colorful lunch (or dinner) plate that one can make from the garden at the moment . Everything can be cooked, days in advance, and assembled just a few minutes before serving. Perfect for when one feels lazy or is hurried. For example, today’s lunch:
First, spread a variery of lettuce leaves on the plate; in this case, green oak-leaf type and (ahem! I think) ‘Rouge Grenobloise’ from the garden; ‘Rhodos’ endive and the lettuce blend I planted are also doing very well.
Then slice a few beets also from the garden. I boiled them whole, with a little of the top left on (so the color would not bleed in the water) until tender and then peeled. Tossed with olive oil, and kept in jars – in the fridge – until ready to use. They’ll keep for 10 days or so, that way.
Add some farm cheese, homemade using milk & buttermilk from Pennsylvania & cream from the Shenandoah Valley, drizzled with a little olive oil.
Beef Salad: left over round steak (an inexpensive cut, already cooked – from Rappahannock County Belle Meade Farm), sliced on the bias, very thinly, and tossed with Thai basil (garden), thinly sliced red onion (garden – yeah – onions from the garden. It’s a big deal for me), and green coriander seeds (need to enjoy them while they last), all tossed with balsamic vinegar and olive oil.
Add some homemade flat bread, and it’s quite filling.
Dessert: Buttermilk ice-cream (cream & buttermilk from Trickling Spring Creamery in Pennsylvania), and berries, some from the garden (rasp & blue) and some from the hedgerow (black & wine)
And this is this week’s contribution to One Local Summer 2009 organized by Farm to Philly. Check out other ideas for local meals on her blog. How about you: any great meals from the garden recently? Share?