Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Winter Gardening

Eberle has come up with a photo essay on how to garden in the winter in Indian Valley. Make no mistake: Council, ID, the "big" town (pop. 814) where we do our basic shopping, doesn’t have markets that are teeming with delectable organic produce. We get by & still manage to eat well—but its sure nice to have a garden in the winter.

oregano, rosemary, & bay
Eberle says: “I use the rosemary in a cold potato salad with lemon & a little garlic, & also of course for roast chicken or turkey.”

basil, cilantro
“The basil goes into omelets & scrambled eggs, & also in a Thai curry chicken soup I’ve made—inspired by the lovely soup we had at Cannon Beach. It’s nice as a garnish with goat cheese, & it’s also nice in John’s pasta sauce. The basil was transplanted from the garden in the fall, & it’s done really well.”

“I use the cilantro in a cole slaw recipe I got from
our friend Tami Lipsey. It’s spicy: the dressing is made from olive oil, chili paste, ginger, sesame oil, rice vinegar, chopped jalapenos & cilantro. I also use it in a hot & sour soup. The cilantro grew from seed I harvested from the garden; we also use some of the seed as coriander spice.”

“Another spice for John’s pasta sauce; I also use oregano in omelets & stews. This was also transplanted from the ‘outdoor’ garden.”

“John uses bay leaves in his red beans & rice recipe, & I use them in soup & stews. I’ve been reading a lot about ancient Antioch lately (long story), & they boiled bay leaves to render oil for soap. We also use bay leaves in a tea that settles the s
tomach. You put 3 bay leaves in a cup & pour boiling water over them, then cover the cup for about 3 minutes. Drink the tea as hot as you safely can. I learned this remedy while I lived in Brazil.”

“This is nice in Greek Salad, or in a yogurt & cucumber sauce. Also a garden transplant, it hasn’t flourished quite as well as the basil & oregano.”

guinea hens, icon, plant with heart-shaped leaves
“The object to the left is something we bought in a thrift shop in Council; it has photos of the guinea hens we used to raise inside; the icon was given to us by our friends the hermit sisters of Marymount. I don’t know the name of the plant, but it has heart-shaped leaves. Every garden has to have art!”

bamboo, ficus
“Gardens also need trees.”

“Pablo the parrot, the prince of birds.” NOTE: I hadn’t previously introduced Pablo, who is a very large presence in the household, & who has been Eberle’s faithful companion for almost 25 years. The screen room behind him is his aviary, built by yours truly, as was the little table holding his cage. What's a garden without a bird?

trailing vincus
“Don’t eat this! You always need to be aware of poisonous plants that may be in a garden. But we love the skylights; they really enhance the garden atmosphere.”

Thanks, Eberle! As I demonstrate in this pic, the garden is a nice place to hang. Actually, the parents of some of our music students seem quite content to wait out the lessons here, flipping thru a magazine.

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