We ate dinner on our patio last night. It was a very peaceful evening with only the brrzzzz of a distant lawnmower and some cling-clings of the neighbors wind-chime. I always find myself staring into the yard at our big weeping willow tree. Isn't it funny how the big strong branches grow up and out but the thin, pale branches droop downward, nearly touching the ground--but not quite? How do those swinging tendrils know that they should stop growing at just the right distance from the grass? Nature really astounds me sometimes.
After we ate, we worked on our little herb garden. The chives and thyme returned this year but the rest weren't so hearty. We purchased a few at Natorp's Garden Store last week to replace what we lost. As Tim and I dug little holes in the potting soil and slipped the plants into their new homes, I found myself thinking of ways I can use each one. A bundle of thyme in a roast chicken; a handful of cilantro in salsa; some fresh oregano in a homemade tomato sauce.
Is it weird that basil is my least favorite herb? In general, I'd rather have parsley or a leafy green like spinach than basil. But I'm sure there will be the occasional margherita pizza or pesto on the weekly menu and I'll be thankful that basil is available.
It's the chives that really perplex me. What do I do with all of them? I whisk them into vinaigrettes, chop them into salads, sprinkle them on potatoes, and mix them with cottage cheese. Do any of you, my readers, have a great idea for using up a good bunch of chives? I'm open to suggestions.
And, I know it's been a while but I'm nearly finished with my post on food podcasts. I hope to have that for you by the end of the week. It's been a great pleasure doing research during my sometimes very long commutes so I thank you for your patience and I hope you will enjoy them as much as I do.
Until then, I'm looking forward to more happy planting and happy eating. For us, they go hand in hand.