Well hello! About two years have passed since I last posted anything at all at my lovely little blog. During those two years, we've had a little baby boy, moved to a new apartment, and generally had a fantastic time keeping up with life.
But I'm back guys, I'M BACK! I want to blog again, and I'm just going to go for it, starting with this little thing I had for lunch today.
Trees around my neighborhood are loaded with all sorts of fruits and nuts, waiting for time and sun, until one day they will fall from their laden boughs into my waiting arms.
And so, I have become consumed with finding new things to pick and forage and turn into fantastic food. You should feel for my husband - despite being the sweetest and kindest man in the history of the world, if he has to hear one more story about my big plans for the plum harvest, he may curl up and die.
He'll probably enjoy it later though, when we sit down to a crusty baguette, bay plum chutney, and a tasty cheese. It's all going to be amazing, guys, AMAZING!
Sometimes, when I get worked up like that, my eyes go all glossy.
Since I'm excitedly planning fun recipes to make use of this bounty, I'm going to start blogging again so I have someone (else) to tell it all to. Poor R, he can hardly take it no more.
And the harvest begins today! In my research about foraging foods, I realized I have a lovely edible plant right outside on my deck which I have never taken advantage of: nasturtium. This is a gorgeous plant to grow, and just takes off here in the spring and summer.
I didn't realized that the whole plant is edible - including the gorgeous yellow, red and orange blossoms. Too lazy to buy lettuce? Eat your patio flowers!
I wanted more than a bowl of petals, however, so I built this salad on a baked potato, which is a great foundation for greens and vinaigrette.
I should note: only eat your nasturtiums if they are pesticide-free.
As you can see from these unruly leaves, mine are!
Now that I have a 14 month old baby, lunch is pretty low on my list of priorities.
In fact, this "lunch" didn't happen till 4 pm today! It's not that I'm trying to starve myself, I just get busy with other things, like reading board books to my Babybear (child), taking him outside to play under the plum trees, and doing a lot of dishes. You know how it is.
Life is full, so full, of good things.
Thankfully, this was a one-dish meal.
Lunchtime Potato and Nasturtium Bowl of Beauty -- a salad
One baked potato, served any temperature you like (I had mine cold)
a handful of young nasturtium leaves, rinsed and dried
a few nasturtium blossoms
your favorite vinaigrette, or just olive oil and a generous squeeze of lemon
Cut the potato down the middle, and pinch up the sides to fluff it up a bit. Flatten slightly, and top with the nasturtium leaves. If they're too large, just tear them up a bit. Check the blossoms for any little insects that might be enjoying their petals, and blow on the flowers to shake them loose. There's no need to wash the flowers. Separate the petals, or leave the blossoms whole. Top with a grind or two of black pepper, a few fresh lavender flowers, and a splash of vinaigrette to serve.
If you'd like to switch things up a bit, I think this salad would be lovely with grated Parmesan. Adding some nuts would be a nice touch. You can swap the lavender flowers for another fresh herb that catches your eyer, or leave them out altogethe. I picked some fresh lavender the other day, and it was so pretty, I couldn't resist tossing a few buds on top.