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Kitchen Garden

Summer Begins

Vidalia onions, garlic scapes and fresh basil.

White butterflies flit around cruciferous vegetable plants laying eggs. It is a sure sign summer is here. I spend more time in the garden and noticed increased insect life. In addition to the green worm-producing butterflies, there are plenty of pollinators. Insect life is a blessing and a curse, something with which gardeners learn to live. There should be a big harvest this year.

Using a scissors, I clipped the top parts of chervil plants and held the herb in my hands. The mild anise fragrance was intoxicating. It made about two cups of loosely packed leaves which are washed, dried, and in a tub in the refrigerator waiting for me to figure out how to use the herb.

I plan to make my first batch of pesto today of mustard greens, garlic scapes, pine nuts, extra virgin olive oil, and salt. Mustard is strongly flavored and will dominate the pesto. There is little benefit to adding herbs as they would be overpowered. Will see how it tastes when I get into the project. I have plenty of basil yet I may reserve that for a more traditional pesto.

Today is the first day of summer and we ended spring with spaghetti and peas for dinner. The sauce was made of last year’s tomatoes, vidalia onions, garlic scapes and fresh basil. Tomato sauce so good I had to stop and consider how lucky we are to have a garden. It was a fine way to welcome summer.