Saturday, May 20, 2023

a small thing

By early May we were eating our own salad; wonderful tender leaf lettuce, with some random chard, kale, and arugula thrown in. And green onions. And we had a chicken stock based soup with all the green in it green onions. And we still had green onions.

We had the dehydrator going for some masa we'd made, so we added a few trays of green onions to it. And it seems like such a small thing, three trays of dried green onions. About three cups dried.And we haven't used dried green onions before and that's half the battle in preserving food -- knowing how and then remembering to use it. And we could easily use that up in just a couple of meals. And these days people don't much use onions as a vegetable staple but as a flavor or condiment.

It seems like a small thing, these dried onions. It seems like a small thing, having a few cups of strawberries to put in the freezer or to make into jam. A few raspberries at a time, a few blueberries at a time, a few gooseberries at a time.

Sure, maybe once every couple of years we'll go to the u-pick and put several gallons of blueberries into the freezer to draw from. You never know from year to year what is going to make plenty and what is not, but with those few berries, we have plenty to top cereal both hot and cold, and it is such a treat!

It might seem like a small thing to put up those onions. It might seem like a small thing to make two batches of cheese off this season's milking. And it was a lot less cheese than I've made in the past. But it will top lots of gyros probably, that will be made with sheep and goats that also seems like small things to put by, especially compared to a cow but we can't process a cow and we can a goat, and then we can keep the skin and learn to process that too.

It might seems like a small thing to take that little bit of sweet corn we grew and freeze a couple bags of it, but it was truly the best sweet corn I've had in a long while. Those few winter squash this year also seemed small, but a year or two ago we had hundreds of pounds of squash to eat on through the winter.

From year to year you never know. You never know what will succeed and what will fail, and something will always fail but something will always succeed too. Hard corn and potatoes are staples. If you have overwintered a cabbage to go with it before the first greens of spring are up, or if you've made kraut, that is no longer a small thing. The onions, even just as a condiment, are no longer a small thing but a treat, a joy, a luxury.

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