25 July 2009

dragon carrot soup

"What garden isn't out of control in July?" I asked my mother earlier today. 

"No, name me a garden that isn't out of control in July," I said a few moments later as I slathered fresh basil pesto on a Ritz cracker. 

They all are, so I won't feel bad that some of the weeds in mine are bigger than my nasturtiums, or that creeping charlie has invaded my shallot bed. (The shallots will be harvested later on today, anyway, and the creeping charlie will go with it.)

It doesn't matter if my garden has a few (albeit ginormous) weeds. This morning I pulled a weed too aggressively out in the carrot bed and I ended up toppling over into a patch of dill. As the aromatic scent of dill surrounded me, I considered the possibility that right then and right there was the best possible place in the world to be.

I think all gardeners ultimately come to this conclusion, that's why we garden so compulsively and with such joy. 

If growing things is exciting, then preparing meals with what you've tended is an even greater thrill. Today our kitchen is filled with carrot tops and bits of fragrant rosemary, sage and thyme. I'm making carrot soup with some early summer carrots, and roasted baby potatoes tossed in olive oil. These beautiful sides will be paired with our own grass-fed lamb chops marinated in red wine, rosemary and garlic. 

Are you hungry? 

After I post this, I'm going to bake a few loaves of Italian feather bread. I can't wait for dinner. This sure beats week days in the city, where I eat like a starving graduate student. 

Hope all of you are having something good for dinner and that you got the chance to take part in the process of getting it to your table. 

P.S. that's my brother with a clutch of dill, me with the bowl of pink baby potatoes, and the last is the carrots tossed in olive oil with fresh herbs just before I placed them in the oven to roast. 

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