Monday, March 7, 2011
Italian Squash and Lebanese Cucumbers
This photo shows the mache still left in one of the garden beds.. Each summer, I let a few mache plants go to seed. Then, once the seed is ready to spread, I uproot the plant and shake it over all the garden beds. Each plant produces thousands of seeds!! Most of the beds are then randomly scattered with seed and we can harvest all winter if we can reach the plants through the snow - a row cover helps to lift off the snow if it's not too deep. I tossed a coin on the bed too so you can see the size of the plants. We just slice them off at soil level, leaving the rosettes whole. So yummy when tossed with lemon juice, olive oil and a sprinkle of salt.
I also managed to get my hands on (squeal!) some genuine straight-from-the-mountain Lebanese metki (also known as painted serpent cucumbers) and melokhiya (an Egyptian green used to make a chicken stew type dish that is then poured over rice and topped with onions and vinegar - my mother in law made it yesterday for lunch). So exciting!! I've been looking for the metki for years. I've tried packets of seed from a handful of suppliers, but they're never the right variety, so I am thrilled to finally have the exact type I've been searching for.
I hope spring if finding you as well..