I finally got the greens cooked that I’d picked around my porch two days ago. They were dandelion and chicory, mostly chicory. I picked them quickly and got a lot of long stems on the chicory leaves, so I’d wondered if they might be tough. They weren’t, though I DID sort of wind them around my fork like spaghetti. The greens tasted good; the salted butter helped, but they did have a somewhat bitter taste. I learned that a half-sip of sweet green tea, taken about halfway through “the chew” and left in the mouth, did wonders in neutralizing that bitterness.
Once the greens were picked the other day, I mowed the lawn. My wife doesn’t know that I put off mowing this past week just to give the plants more time to grow. Incidentally, she’s decided that I’m eating greens to diet, so I can lose weight and catch another woman, if something happens to her. I find that to be sad with a capital “S.” Besides, I’m sure that a 60+ year-old man, with heart trouble, arthritis, fifty pound of sagging skin and no decent retirement would be a hot commodity on the elder marriage market. Some days, ya gotta laugh or ya cry.
I’ve decided to start recording the birds I see each day from my porch (and maybe elsewhere). I’m not sure why—something else to do, I guess. I’ve got several of those little pocket-sized “Holstein-colored” composition books, so I won’t have to buy anything. This morning, I saw a buzzard (turkey vulture), redbird (cardinal), and a nuthatch. I can’t be sure, but we may have an ovenbird nesting by the base of a small greenbrier-enshrouded oak at the edge of the lawn.
My foraging journal still leaves a lot to be desired, mainly because I started it so late in life. Suddenly, the world is filled with the beautiful yellow blossoms of wild mustard (wintercress), which means it’s all past the eating stage. Most wild edibles get tough and bitter once they bolt. I DO have three locations marked now, so next winter, or early spring, I should be able to pick some greens. I’ve never had wintercress, so I’m curious. We’re never too old to try something new! © 2016