Saturday, July 30, 2011

I'm Worried, Aways in Love

The old Wilco tune comes to mind when I ponder my connection to growing food.  I started when I was 8, my first radishes igniting a slow-burn fuse on a lifetime love. 

(BTW, what was up with the draperies back then?)
Why worried? Because I am always in love with what we grow and, more specifically, with eating it. But again this year the tomatoes aren't right and it feels personal. More precisely, some tomatoes on our roof are just fine and others are sickly. I have 50 years of experience. What's the problem? (Clearly that's rhetorical until I post details.)

For now let's focus on Saturday breakfast from all the food that's thriving on the roof, despite hail, inches and inches of rain, high winds, and that week of 100-degree temps.
Jimmy Nardello peppers, a Santa Fe Grande pepper for heat, the pingtung long and Listada eggplants and Matina tomatoes. Plus a whole bunch of chopped basil from the six varieties out front.

Here's a rain/wind-ripped branch of peppers called Little Bells. We've had roughly 11 inches of rain in 11 days, with bucketfuls falling all at once. And wind.

We chopped these sweet peppers for the melange. The power keeps going out too, twice in one week (make that three times--it just went down again). Last night's power went mostly-but-not-all out: weirdly down to 41 volts, enough to kill air conditioner, computer, and fridge, leaving us in cocktail-hour light, which would have been fun, but it was hot and who wants to open the freezer at that point for ice. I'm lucky to live with a nice guy equipped with a voltage meter.

Eggplant slices go into the cast iron pan, already slick with a hot film of coconut oil. Toward the end, I'll sprinkle the tomato halves with kosher salt and lay them face-down into the hot cast iron to warm.

A nice miso sauce on top and that's a breakfast I love.
Maybe I shouldn't worry so much...about wobbly electrical grids and confounding weather, wondering if we could feed ourselves in the face of shortages. But I do.

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