Wednesday, March 18, 2009
MORE OF SPRING IN MY BACK YARD - also SATURDAY RAMBLE
Last Sunday afternoon it was soft balmy weather. Perfect to work in the yard. We, or rather my hubby, worked in the yard to pull up all overgrown plants and weeded one corner of the yard, and a strip on the side, by this fence with the wisteria.
The previous owner must have loved plants that plant themselves forth (can't remember the right word for it). I am not exaggerating, but since the fall somehow seedlings developed into minitiature trees, taller than my 6'3" hubby! Everything in our yard grows at a faster rate than the yards around us - I guess our soil is more fertile?? I mentioned casually that for that reason it would be good to be in the yard somewhat more regular. He gave me a fake cheese smile in response. We understand each other without words.
Since I have a hard time pulling or twisting things with my hands, I just raked the dead leaves of winter. Mainly to keep my hubby company. He hates yard work, but he also knows I would do it myself, if I would be able to do the heavier work.
(Just in time, because this week it has been 80 degree weather, and had the air conditioning on in the car!)
Now, there is enough bare soil that I should plant something there.
May be an apple tree, the way they are raising the prices... This week they were 1 lb(3 apples) for 2 dollars at one store, and 49c. per apple in another store. Are they crazy?
Now, we do have a lemon and a lime tree. During the clean-up of the yard I saw the lemons hanging. You see on the pic that this year the lemon is almost as big as a naval orange. That was my big excitement of the day!
My lemons are never as harshly sour as the store bought ones. I wash and freeze them. If I need the peel for a salad, I just cut the peel off while it's still frozen, and put the rest back in the freezer bag.
I use my lemons mainly for salads, some pasta dishes, and desserts, because I don't like lemonade. Although, when it is sweltering hot 90 plus degrees weather in the summer, I love a glass of tonic with a slice of lemon and ice cubes in it.
Lemon is also used in one of my favorite pasta dishes.
PASTA WITH SHRIMP AND ASPARAGUS
8 oz. spaghetti
1 lb. asparagus, cut in 2 inch pieces
3/4 lb. shrimp, peeled
1/8 teaspoon red (chili) pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup fresh basil leaves
1 garlic clove
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 Tablespoon olive oil
Cook spaghetti as directed.
Meanwhile, in stir fry pan, fry the pieces of asparagus in hot olive oil until crunchy (like Chinese vegetables, done, but not soft).
Add spices and shrimp, and fry for one more minute.
(I go the easy route and buy the cooked shrimp)
Mix all ingredients for the dressing in a separate bowl. The amount is for 2 people, so double or triple the recipe for more servings. Also, if dressing is too "thin" to your taste, you may thicken it with mayonnaise. Or, if you like a warm sauce, make a white sauce, or an Alfredo sauce, and add these ingredients to it.
The asparagus and shrimp goes on top of the spagetti.
It the dressing is put in a little seperate bowl, people can sprinkle as much or as little of the dressing as they want on their spaghetti dish.
Back to my yard.
To my great delight, the wisteria is profusely blooming right now. This one is the ultimate romancer. The dainty flowers have all my favorite shades of purple and lavender in them.
I find these flowers have an air of mystery, something fairy tale like over them.
Since I love mysteries, I invite you to plop on one of my chairs beside mine and while you drink a cup of tea or coffee with cookie, read an Agatha Christie for an hour, or a book to your own liking.