Sunday, June 15, 2008

In The Garden

It's a beautiful day out and the perfect opportunity to catch up on some much overdue work in the garden. My garden is made up entirely of edibles. I've tried to plant flowers in the past and they always die. If it's not going to be eaten, it generally gets neglected and has very little chance of survival in my backyard.

Every year it's a challenge to figure out how I'm going to support the tomato plants. I picked up this bamboo tepee at a local tomato festival and I am definitely going to be back for more next year. It provides enough room for the plant to grow, but enough support to keep the vines from splitting away from the base.

My absolute favorite part of having a backyard garden is the taste of homegrown tomatoes. It's a very exciting time of year, when I start to see the first green ones come in, followed by what seems like an eternity for the first ones to turn red and then before you know it, the garden is covered in little red globes of deliciousness. I found the first cherry tomatoes turning red today. These are from a variety called Sprite.

After sharing a few things with my neighbor, my take for the day is some sunburst squash, zucchini, radishes, sugar snap peas and a cucumber.

Whenever I spend a day in the garden, I can't wait to get inside and make something with the fresh produce. I didn't want to turn on my oven as it had been a pretty hot day so I decided on a no-cook salad of squash and zucchini ribbons.

Salad of Squash & Zucchini Ribbons
1 T Olive Oil
3 T White Balsamic Vinegar
3 Small Zucchini
3 Squash
2 T Chopped Dill
Salt to taste

Peel off ribbons from squash and zucchini with a vegetable peeler. Drizzle with one tablespoon of vinegar to prevent any discoloration. Make dressing by whisking together oil and remaining vinegar and adding salt to taste. Mix dressing into ribbons and sprinkle chopped dill over the top. Enjoy!

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