Thursday, March 25, 2010

Oh peas -- bean there, done that. I no longer carrot all



During times of uninspired desperation, household chores help. Oh, nothing drastic. Vacuuming? The hell you say; what next -- opening the fridge to peer in my vegetable crisper? (Vegetable crisper, by the way, is a misnomer. I’ve kept the same vegetables in mine for years, and they're still not crisp. Maybe once the Toyota mess is cleared up someone will look into this.)

In fact, I’ve reached the conclusion that life is too short for certain activities such as dusting, ironing, window washing -- those repetitive tasks that yield no lasting result. That wasn’t a rock Sisyphus tried to push up the hill, it was a Beissel.

No, I and my farmhands have been tending the crops, crops that actually agreed, grudgingly, to make an early-spring appearance. Of course, the ones in greatest abundance have no edible value – kale, swiss chard, and a few other poisonously bad tasting leaves. The beans and peas are ok I guess, but when I read the urban homesteaders describing the juicy sweetness of green pockets bursting with flavor … aw, come on, we know it’s just a fucking pea. It tastes of chlorophyll and dirt, not of ripe cheese or caviar.

But now I sound all grumpy don’t I? So forget it, you go have your splendor in the grass with your peas, get naked and frolic with your juicy sweetness in a meadow for all I care; it’s a free country. It’s a free country, and that’s just a pea. And I’m not going to wash my car, either.

35 comments:

  1. Oh Hiker, give peas a chance! (sorry I had to be the first to say it.) . I hear ya. Every spring i get all Mother Earthy and plant big pots of herbs that yield almost nothing. Well to give them a fair shake if I watered them daily when it's 99 outside they might put out for me. And for the record, I'll iron all day but now I not only hate mopping the kitchen floor, I hate vacuuming and dusting doesn't do it for me so much either. Hell I'm as grumpy as you are!

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  2. I'm green with envy at your greens! I love 'em all.

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  3. Miss J will see your not washing a car or vacuuming and raise you a not balancing the checkbook.

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  4. Oh Miss J, it's easy to balance a checkbook. Just make sure your hair is flat on top and stare straight ahead at a fixed point on the horizon.

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  5. You don't sound grumpy at all while you're frolicking in your garden, KB.

    Btw, I was at Noir Food & Wine Bar today. It was packed. I don't remember which Wine I had but I liked it, and my lovely dining companions enjoyed their meal.

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  6. It's a free pea.

    It tastes good in pasta carbonara.

    I would like to grow a pea this year. I'm not saying I will, but I'd prefer it to sweeping this floor one more time.

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  7. Grow blue cheese and camembert.

    GG

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  8. Cafe P, I'll sip with you anytime anywhere.
    V
    My Wv is JECORRET!
    Mais oui!!

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  9. I usually stick to harvesting the canned peas at the supermarket. A good pea is a pea that comes from aisle 4.

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  10. I've got peas this year also, but what kills me is that you harvest and snip and string and shell. And you wind up with 20 peas. Barely enough for one serving!

    They look pretty growing, though.

    My best crop this year is my broccoli. I've tried it in past and been overwhelmed with bugs. This year, just lovely. And when you cut off the main stalks, little florets grow up on the sides and they're even better.s

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  11. You're supposed to shell them? Uh-oh.

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  12. You know what happens to crops that don't get picked? They get turned under. Ever smell acre upon acre of turned under onions? Makes your eyes water. Turned under cabbage? You will puke for a week.

    Of course, I used to love to watch my Mennonite gramma make mennonite borscht. It contains cabbage. I tried to make it for my family. I screwed up and used lettuce.

    Vegetable gardens are highly over-rated. Give me grapevines anytime. Unused grapes make great wine. Can I pour you another glass?

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  13. Uh oh. No, not Noir Bar.
    It's - Noir Food & Wine Bar, on Mentor Ave.
    It gets busy. So come early, or come late. But, come. That is, if you love wine - which this K9 does...preferably with his cheeze & chocolate.

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  14. I have no juicy sweetness in the meadow to cavort with, KB. I'll have to buy mine in.

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  15. I'm growing sweet peas and buying green peas

    "That wasn’t a rock Sisyphus tried to push up the hill, it was a Beissel"

    So true..made me laugh

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  16. I thought kale and chard were fashionable or trendy or something . . . Or is it just that nobody wants to eat them any more than they want to wear spike heels or neckties?

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  17. P.S. What's TK? I even googled it, and ?????

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  18. OK, I've been ridiculed for years by those who know me in flesh life because I say I cannot dismiss the possibility that I'm psychic.

    You can see the time between my comments here.

    I went from my last comment to watching a January Letterman show I'd taped, and Jennifer Connelly was going on (and on) about Christmas cooking blah blah and how her husband came back from the grocery with KALE, NOT RAINBOW CHARD.

    How often do Kale and Chard enter my life? How often do I watch Letterman in the morning?

    So maybe a SoCal audience will LISTEN when I offer that I just might be from the PSYCHIC clan of Banjos.

    Sorry for the excess. I'll just drift quietly now into my strange place in the spheres.

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  19. Oh, do not go gentle into that good night, Banjo.

    (TK = To Come. Maybe it's just newspaper lingo.)

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  20. Why would anybody grow kale and chard? Okay, chard, maybe, but kale? Was it so Banjo could have a psychic experience?

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  21. I dunno why people grow kale or chard, but our CSA LOVES to grow it. We have some lucky friends who get it from our CSA box. With all the other goodies I get in a week, and even with recipes, I'm a bit beyond in using kale or chard and it's never done much for me. Then again, I said that about leeks last year and made an ass kicking leek/potato soup...that now that I'm talking about, I am craving!

    given a choice, I'll leave the "women's work" to anyone else. I hate dusting, especially, as in a friends house, where once I finish the room, if I go back to where I started, it looks like I haven't done much. Yes, I've changed the air filters, kept the windows closed, used special cloths---I think the house is just a collector of dust.

    I believe I'm going to raise you a "not going to do laundry today"...too beautiful a day, I can't be bothered, but I will go out and mow and edge a lawn and plant a few seeds that I dearly hope will grow into something pretty!

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  22. I would love to have a garden. I don't even have a balcony, at present. *sigh* I have to content myself with visits to farmers markets. Such a hardship. *grin*

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  23. A friend once said that she'd long ago decided she could either have a clean house or a life. It was a life-changing moment for me. Not that I'd kept a clean house up until that point--I just stopped feeling guilty about not doing so.

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  24. I never wash the truck. It just gets dirty again. That's what rain is for.
    If you have muddy tools in the pickup bed and drive in the rain, they will come clean!
    The almanac says the last hard frost here should be no later than May 15. May the Green Giant save us!

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  25. I don't believe you for a second, Banjo. All the things of which you speak are merely decorative.
    (though kale doesn't match my skin tones)

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  26. Petrea, that's a pretty good reason.

    Bandit, decorative??? Watch it or I'll send out my hovering goblins that prestedigitate gophers.

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  27. If anyone else is finishing up their taxes tonight and hyperventilating -- really, I felt like I would pass out trying to figure out which bank bought which bank that now had my $5 -- visit Banjo. Whether he strums the strings or not, he's a wonderful English prof, and you can engage in some delicious discussions on poetry. Brenda and I are hooked.

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  28. I've bookmarked Banjo and hope you've recovered from your tax-induced anxiety attack. It's certainly hard this year with all the banking changes. As for gardening, my yields of veg are so low that I can't bear to sacrifice them for food. And what can one do with a harvest of 16 peas? The only fruit (veg?) that's worked for us in this strange climate is tomatoes. Small ones, hundreds of them. Give up on the kale and other cattle food - too much chlorophyll - just grow tomatoes.

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  29. Oh, you never know when a boring old pea can rise to the occasion. WHen Union soldiers took all of the food in Southern states, they left the lowly cowpea, thinking it was animal feed. And that's how the humble little black-eyed pea became a staple of Southern cooking.

    But, hey, I'm with you on chard and kale. Isn't kale ornamental?

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  30. Oh, and hiker, you're brilliant. This is so damned funny.

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  31. I cannot get hooked on another blog. I just can't. I already can't keep up with the ones I'm hooked on and the guilt is overwhelming. I'm sorry, Banjo, but I'm afraid to even look.

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  32. Thanks, you damn Yankees for leaving the lowly (cowpea) black eyed peas for us rednecks to enjoy! ;) LA, great southern trivia. I never knew!
    V

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  33. taxes...gophers...
    How'd you know I was in the underground economy?

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  34. AH, many thanks for the free promo.

    The tax woes you (plural) speak of convince me that my money is well spent in hiring some guys. I've never found an employer who paid me what I'm worth, so this is one of the ways I pay myself for my time and mental health.

    Laurie, I love little historical bits like the black-eyed peas story. I've had 'em in a couple restaurants where they must have been vegetarian (ham hock is essential) and brand new (they need to get somewhat mushy, don't they? For me, no question about it).

    Do you put a dime in 'em for New Years?

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  35. what is is with vegetable crispers??? Don't be confused!

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