Extra green beans, extra apricots, extra garlic and onions and herbs: It was the end of this week’s CSA distribution and there were leftovers and I knew I should pass on them because my schedule this week is crazed. But…free peak season food. I brought home the extras.
And then there were all those elderberries ripening in my garden, in the park. Their season is short, so…
This morning I was out the door early to do a food preservation demo for the New York Botanical Garden at the Dag Hammarskjold Greenmarket in Manhattan. After that I had a meeting. Then I sat down to work on my next book because my deadline is the end of this week. The green beans waited. The elderberries waited.
But not for long–the beans are in the canner as I write this and the berries are in the freezer.
Last weekend I taught two classes at Stone Barns. If you’ve never been there, trust me, you really, really want to go.
In the classes I talked about how to fit gardening, cooking, foraging, and food preservation into a busy schedule.
“Are you nuts?” a friend asked me on the phone, “You’ve got a deadline in two days. Screw the elderberries!”
Well, no, because the elderberries won’t wait. They are on their own schedule, which has nothing to do with the appointments on my calendar, and one of the things I love about eating local, seasonal foods is that it keeps me in touch with reality. It’s harvest season, that’s the reality.
Besides, the new book is about how to live a locavore’s life in the midst of a hectic urban one, and I wouldn’t be much good on the subject if I wasn’t actually doing it.
This is Summer, the season of abundance. Summer doesn’t care about deadlines and meetings. Summer is dropping food practically into my lap and I’d be an idiot not to make the most of it.
So…just finished the last chapter on the new book. Timer just went off on those beans and they’re ready to come out of the canner. Got to de-stem those elderberries and get the next batch into the freezer.
Botany, Ballet, & Dinner from Scratch: A Memoir with Recipes by Leda Meredith