Wednesday, September 1, 2010


Eastside Road, September 1, 2010—
I DISTINCTLY REMEMBER being impressed, or rather perplexed, dumfounded perhaps, when I was ten or eleven years old, to hear another boy in my school say that he had no idea what an artichoke was. I had spent all my life except for one recent year in California; he was a recent arrival from Colorado. I knew nothing about Coll-oh-RAY-do, as my Oklahoma grandmother always called it, but I knew from artichokes.
Making pesto
Making pesto
I set out three or four plants a few months ago. They haven't done very well in this peculiar summer, but we have had a few of them. The other day I noticed two had got quite good-sized, too big to eat the way I usually like them — halved or quartered and sautéed with garlic in olive oil. I cut them off their stalks and brought them in, leaving them in the sink. L. suggested they'd be harboring ants, so I submerged them in cold salted water, weighting them down with a pot-lid, and forgot them for a couple of days.

Tonight Lindsey boiled them the normal way, then dressed them with melted butter and the little pesto left from yesterday. And to accompany a plate of pasta she made a fine tomato sauce, browning some onion, chopping in a few ripe red tomatoes, and simmering it with dried porcini we'd come home with the other day (thanks, Bill!). Green salad, naturally.
Cheap Nero d'Avola

1 comment:

Curtis Faville said...

The comment about ants in the artichokes is very apt.

I've brought in chokes from the garden, soaked them in water for a week (!), and still found ants in them when they were put in to cook!