Sunday, July 12, 2009

Why We Garden

These tiny little eggplants are called Fairy Tale. I don't actually remember ordering them but I started some seed and planted one good plant into the garden. We are growing 4 kinds of eggplants this summer, Rosa Bianca, Black Bell, Fairy Tale and Orient Express. They are doing quite well and all have good fruit set. We only have 6 plants, 2 each of the Rosa and Black, one each of the Fairy and Orient. It's enough. We can make ratatouille and baba ganoush, imam biyaldi (the priest fainted), asian eggplant salad, eggplant parmesan, have plenty to eat and some to freeze. We would be hard pressed to find all of these at market. I priced organic eggplant yesterday, it's going for $2 a pound and tiny ones like the Fairy Tale are $4/pound.
We try some new varieties every year. Another new trial this summer is Haricot Verts Tavera. It took us about 10 days to pick enough of these for two generous servings as I only planted a small section with them. But let me tell you, we simply blanched them and ate them at room temperature with NOTHING on them, not even salt, they were scrumptious. Here they accompany the best and simplest pasta ever, fresh tomatoes, basil, and garlic, cooked in olive oil, tossed with penne and topped with the real deal, Reggiano Parmesan. The little eggplants I halved and cooked slowly with S&P in olive oil. They were creamy, sweet, no seeds, totally delectable. Here they are dressing up the pasta plate.

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