Fruit of Our Labor

This is why I surround myself with awesome people - otherwise, I'm tempted to give up on some wonderful projects. Case in point, today our friend Gail marched right into that overgrown garden (I'm so embarrassed about its weedy condition) and extracted enough food to feed a couple of large families.

We picked eggplant, squash, cantaloupe, a few Roma-type tomatoes, a cuke or two, and some lemon balm to make tea. The weather had cooled off 15 or 20 degrees and we were in the mood for tea.

We crushed some leaves into a cup with a tea bag ready to go - I happened to have English Breakfast handy- and let it steep for just under five minutes.

We strained out the leaves, added some local honey, and enjoyed the best tea I've had in ages.

Then, what I didn't document, was my successful attempt at breading and frying eggplant slices. That is a trip. I've never worked with eggplant before and that whole "sucking out the bitterness with a coating of salt" thing is pretty freaky. And cool.

Gail suggested dipping the eggplant slices in beaten egg and milk, and then dredging (twice) in seasoned breadcrumbs. Can you believe I had breadcrumbs in the cabinet? Me neither. But it worked. After browning the slices on both sides in olive oil, I topped with mozzarella and a quick tomato sauce.

Ted and Emma gave it an enthusiastic thumbs up. Win.

The reason that momentous kitchen victory didn't get documented is that the camera has gone missing. Yes, I've retraced my steps and torn up the house, but so far, it's still hidden. Thank goodness for the Droid. All of today's photos were taken with the Droid.

I did capture this sweet moment during evening feeding. The temperature and humidity were WAY down, and we all relaxed into contented puddles as we moved through our routines tonight. Ahhhh. The sun is so low that there were no shadows. Our friend Laurie insists that fall is just around the corner.


  1. Hmmm, was the last picture you took of me or the scarf on the bench? What did you do when you walked into the house right as I was leaving? Go there now... maybe the camera is waiting there.

  2. Mz Cindy,
    If you have plenty of lemon balm (and if you grow lemon balm, you always have more than you can use!), I have another suggested use for it--substitute some of your basil with lemon balm in your favorite pesto recipe. A friend and I tried that once when we discovered we didn't have enough basil. It was incredible and is now my favorite way to make pesto.

  3. Anonymous8:59 AM

    Nice picture of the animals peaceable feeding. Alpacamama

  4. Judith- I downloaded the photo of you and then I started cleaning house for dinner guests. That was my Waterloo. Haven't seen it since. :-(

    Peggy HR - that is an awesome idea! Except now I have to make pesto.

    Peggy R - thanks! The weather was so beautiful yesterday I was beside myself...

  5. Beautiful! Congratulations on this great harvest!

  6. Oh, Jennifer - the place needs some remedial care! It's totally gotten away from me!

  7. Droid pictures have their charm :)

    If you like babaganoush (a staple appetizer at Mediterranean restaurants), you'll probably like a Bulgarian recipe for eggplants. Just grill them in the oven along with a couple of peppers (turn them sideways, too), take skin off and mash with olive oil, salt, some minced garlic and the juice of half a lemon. Sprinkle with parsley.

  8. Ellie - that sounds awesome! I'm going to try that. And, I was just thinking that I may need a class in taking art photos with the Droid! My latest post about our trip to the vet was all Droid.

  9. I think that lemon balm would make some lovely icecream! You could even make a sorbet! That wuld cool you down in your extreeeeeeeeeeeeeem heat!


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