The Fever

Ashley and Arugula
Ashley and Arugula

Sure, there’s a column to be written. But it’s gorgeous Sunday. And Plants on Deck would waaaay rather garden than write about gardening. [Yet here I am, writing about gardening but not writing about the gardening I’m supposed to be writing about. Hmmm.]

Rasishes_MayBesides, it’s time for a reseeding update as  the fruits of the earliest labors are already being harvested! Last night’s dinner featured a salad composed entirely of Ashley lettuce, arugula, winter cress, and a variety of random radishes saved from last year’s supply (all planted around March 13). And a couple weeks earlier, the wonderful husband made his last-meal roast chicken and mashed potatoes with healthy doses of POD-grown thyme, rosemary, and chives. herbal harvest(This umami-tastic miracle meal is surely what this eater would choose should she have only one meal left on this earth. Preferably with a healthy side of More Vetri than Chang Brussels Sprouts. Hence, the “last meal” business).

While the peas aren’t sprouting nearly as quickly as hoped for, they’re not getting yanked. So, committing long-term to them, Scarlet Nantes carrots have joined the Maestro on deck to maximize the container’s use and the Prussian Blues can do what they do out front.

Bartram's Winter Cress
Bartram's Winter Cress

Strangely, for the second year running, the Baker Creek pepper cress failed to emerge (thankfully, the Bartram’s Winter Cress is doing just fine) so that widow box has been reseeded with a second round of radishes and tennis ball lettuce.

And, finally, a brave tarragon that spent most of the winter hibernating in an office window sill, joined the chives, thyme, and oregano in the well-used herb planter recently relocated from the little blue deck, to the plants out front.

Because you know you want it:

More Vetri Than Chang Brussels Sprouts
20ish small Brussels sprouts
1-2 cloves garlic, sliced into thirds lengthwise
1 tbs grape seed oil
3 thick-slice pieces of bacon, cut into lardon-sized pieces
1 tsp sherry vinegar
2 tbs butter
salt and pepper

1) Trim the root end of each sprout, and cut in half lengthwise. Rub the flat side of each half with the cut sides of the garlic clove.

2) Heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. When hot, add the sprouts and shake the pan to coat them with oil. Turn the sprouts cut side down and scatter the pancetta in the pan. Cook undisturbed for 6-8 minutes, or until the sprouts are deeply browned (almost black) on the cut sides.

3) Add the vinegar and butter, tossing to coat the sprouts. Season with salt and pepper.

4) Oh my.

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