Monday, September 01, 2008

Morning, Glory

Since the Mister and I rented our first apartment together, I've always loved this plant. The apartment was in a rather dumpy location– complete with bus depot and train tracks out back. But along this one wire fence someone, most likely years before, had planted Morning Glory. And I was smitten. Being a morning person myself, I admired a plant that got the major part of its work done in the AM.

It was more than 10 years later before I had my own house and yard. And one of the first things I was determined to do was plant Morning Glory, though many advised against it. It will take over the place, they warned. And it has. It's been two seasons since I've even bothered putting seed down. This year one window box has been completely engulfed by the stuff. But it's the end of the season. Not much else is blooming or looking very pretty so I'm glad I have my Morning Glory.

One Local Summer, Week 13: Crab Cakes

Well this is it, the end of the OLS Challenge. I've enjoyed being a Mid-Atlantic coordinator and am appreciative of Farm to Philly for hosting the event this year. I'd say it was a resounding success. This week's meal consisted of crab cakes, a favorite around here, with CSA swiss chard, squash and potatoes on the side. I also made a salad of our own-grown tomatoes with CSA basil and fresh mozzarella from our local Italian shop.

Reflecting back on the season I am proud of the meals we've made. But there has been a lot more local eating going on here than documented on the blog. Each week I made sure there was always one official meal. And yet because we're committed to keeping our food mileage low, our kitchen has been very well-stocked with local goodness this summer. This has meant Jersey fruit on our cereal. And home-grown tomato sandwiches at lunch. Plus our freezer is stocked with strawberries, green beans and snap peas, spinach, pesto, tomato sauce and watermelon. Summer goodness that will be a welcome taste come winter.

And now that I have a daughter joining us at the table, the stakes are higher and my food choices matter that much more. This summer I watched her taste her first Jersey blueberries, peaches and nectarines– flavors she'll come to look forward to each summer. She gobbled up Jersey potatoes, beets and squash and delighted at discovering the tiny peas hidden inside each string bean pod. She's been slow to warm up to tomatoes, but I can see she's coming around. This is how I want it to be for her. For her to experience food at its very best and appreciate all that it represents. I want her to learn to savor every bite when in the thick of the season so that she also knows the pleasure of waiting, of going without and anticipating the turning of the seasons again. To me that's truly tasting, enjoying and respecting your food.