A-bun-dance. That’s how my friend Stratton translated the word we know to mean a wealth of. Another friend made some divining cards for my birthday one year, like a deck of cards that look the same on one side and on the flip side she wrote one word on each: integrity, hope, delight, abundance, etc. When someone drew a card I asked them to decorate the card symbolizing the word written on it. To each his own translation, it was amusing and enlightening to see how my friends decorated the cards. In classic Stratton style, he drew what looked like a slice of bread, or a bun, dancing.
Now i find myself trying to relate that little anecdote to this blog post… and I find it doesnt really relate to anything except perhaps the good mood we find ourselves in during summer. Summertime is easier, in some ways. The Ayurvedic mantra for summer is Celebration! And I certainly feel like celebrating the abundance of the continual harvest, with full belly and kitchen full of fragrant, gorgeous, tasty produce.
This week I’ve made sour dill pickles with garlic, chili pepper and grape leaves for crispness. Well, they are being made; they’ll take a week or two to ferment in the gallon glass jar we packed them into. We (with my husband) made 10, half quart jars of fig preserves out of a single harvest from both of our fig trees one morning (it’s been a great year for figs with well-timed rain). We ‘pt up’ eggplant and roasted red pepper in olive oil for the winter and I’ve started a batch of live ginger beer. And we just had a simple but fabulous dinner of home made pesto on rice bread topped with heirloom tomatoes at their finest hour. Yum
Ive never really been a foodie. In fact, its common for me to get annoyed at the hunger tinging in my belly- meaning i have to break from the day’s activities to feed myself (the acute irony of an organic gardener’s life). But with the incredible abundance of produce that comes from our small home garden with relatively little effort on our part, it’s hard not to be appreciative of the prosperity! Tasty stuff like eden gem muskmelons (try to find that in a store!), all kinds of tomatoes we make into the Most flavorful sauces. Todd for lunch chopped some zucchini and eggplant, mixed it with some of our garlic and tomatoes and boiled it all down in a pot with some olive oil. It was Delicious. He remarked on really good food being about basic, wholesome ingredients. If you grow your tomatoes well- organically from heirloom seed with good soil- you’ll have a good meal. Simple ingredients, simple to cook, fabulous on the palette.
And that most of these good meals are coming from 20 steps from our back door is the most rewarding part. We supplement, sure- we still buy our grains and oils and some spices, but each year we find ourselves making more meals that are 95 -100% purely grown in our little slice of backyard heaven. It is the true feeling of abundance….. can you see my little buns dancing?!