Thursday, March 7, 2013

Big Salad in My Back Yard



From my garden, with a few snips of some scissors, I can gather a variety of lettuce, kale, cilantro, thyme, green onions, garlic, Chinese cabbage, artichokes, cauliflower (and their greens), beets (more edible leaves) ... oh, the possibilities! And I can switch things out and plant other things from time to time. Next we're going to start some carrots and potatoes. I also love that I've reduced waste and I know that my food isn't laden with pesticides. Eat locally? You just don't get more local.

You should have a garden too!

I know, some of you live in apartments. The lack of a yard presents problems. Others, however, have overcome these problems as you can see here, and here, and here.


With the help of my big backyard salad I can take some cranberry bread, butter, olive oil, garlic, and whip up some croutons to work with goat cheese, apples and carrots. Topped with some oil, balsamic vinegar and pomegranate syrup ... lovely, and I only snip what I'm going to use. Any dead leaves get buried in the soil for mulch.


And it isn't just convenience. It's getting to know your food, and using parts you may not have known that you could eat, like cauliflower leaves. Before I had a garden I didn't even know cauliflower had leaves.


Don't worry, carnivores. It's not just "bunny food" we're talking here ...


MEAT!!!!
Yes, brined, marinated flank steak is part of the salad world too, complete with a reduced red wine sauce. The marinade was mission fig balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, shaved garlic and fresh-ground black pepper. I served the whole thing on top of some cous cous. It was delightful ... oh, I meant ... STEAK GOOD!


Sure, I have to fend off some slugs, snails, wee birds, and ants, but isn't your food worth fighting for? Mine certainly is. Plant some seeds, in a box or in the yard, and watch your food grow. Like me, you'll be glad that you did.