Monday, April 26, 2010

First of the year

It began Sunday night. For weeks I'd been watching those carefully planted rows getting bigger, greener. A few days ago, I strolled out to my cold frame and decided it was time to put something homegrown on our weekly meal plan: pizza with sun dried tomatoes and fresh arugala. Fresh, homegrown arugala.

This is the beginning of the best season: the garden season. The fresh and local eating season. The season of plucky lettuces, and ripe tomatoes, and zeppelin-sized zucchini. Nothing beats that self-sustaining feeling, the rewards that come with providing for our meals, the gifts from the garden.

I need to throw in a quick pitch for arugala: it is easier than mold to grow. Easier than hair, maybe, if that metaphor works better for you. If you've ever found yourself the slightest bit fascinated with the idea of growing something for yourself, start here. Arugala grows like an absolute weed, because a weed is pretty much what it is. This crop of mine, planted in the frigid optimism of a March thaw, took about five weeks from seed to salad. The closer we get to the summer solstice, the faster things grow: the next row of arugala I sow will be ready in three weeks. It's a never-ending wonder, this world of seeds and damp dirt.

Our meal was pizza with sundried tomato pesto, feta, and fresh arugala. My favorite pizza crust recipe can be found here. My go-to sundried tomato pesto recipe is here. This tomato-arugala-feta combination works with fresh tomatoes, as well. You can stay tuned for that one in August, when I have not just fresh arugala in my garden, but tomatoes, too.
I can't wait for that.


Laura Elaine said...

Yum! How could I forget about arugala!? I have a feeling we'll be copying this dish very soon...

Kristina said...

It's the best of the early spring veggies. Hope you enjoy!

alanna rose said...


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