Sunday, December 14, 2014

Last Summer's Hard Work Pays Off

This weekend, in all the holiday hoopla of gift-shopping (as little as we could get away with), visiting with friends (made yesterday great!), and cookie-making (all of this afternoon), we didn't manage the weekly run to the grocery store. When I was poking through the cupboards thinking about supper, I almost gathered up my jacket and wallet to make that run.

We are out of fresh fruit, and the drawers in the fridge contain only carrots. The rest of the fridge is pretty empty, too.

However, we have many jars of dehydrated garden-peppers and tomatoes, a big basket heaped with butternut squash, another big basket heaped with sweet potatoes, a smaller basket still half-filled with shallots, and a small freezer filled with tomatoes, berries, sweet corn, okra, zucchini, and more.

Since the cupboards pretty much always contain at least a few kinds of dried beans (some from the store, some from the little farm at which we volunteer) and popcorn from our yard, and the garden contains several kinds of greens and winter radishes (plus parsley, plus cilantro) ready to harvest, and there is homemade applesauce alongside the green salsa in jars in the garage, there is no need to make a panicked run to the store just because we are missing some of our commonly available foods (like eggs and fresh fruit).

In other words, this is a good time to relax and enjoy the results of last summer's hard work. For tonight, we made black bean soup that included some of last summer's garden produce, plus rice and sauteed butternut squash. I know that not everyone is happy with such a vegetarian meal, but it worked for us.

On Wednesday, Joe will have time to shop for additional groceries. Until then, we will use a little kitchen creativity to enjoy the fruits of our labors. I hope that all the other gardeners out there are enjoying the season!

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