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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Saving Seeds of Basil, Ratatouille and Summer's End

A honey customer stopped on our porch today to chat for a while. She asked me if I knew that when Basil seeds out at the end of the summer that you can 'gather' the seeds by drying the basil and separating the tiny black seeds. She then plants them, both scattering them in the fall and saving some for spring, and has her own profuse patch of basil every single year! I don't know why, with all the seed saving we do, that I had never considered basil.  So, I wanted to pass this basil seed advice on.

Right now there is a small kettle of garden ratatouille on the stove. I make it with whatever is in season. This pot contains zucchini, brandywine tomatoes, fresh garlic and onion, olive oil, and a small eggplant.

We will serve it in pottery bowls with a hot pepper on the side to season it with and some chewy homemade chapati bread, which is really very simple and much much healthier and more delicious than the 'flour tortillas and pita breads' that we are relegated to purchasing in the store.

The goat girls are being dried up for breeding season, which I hope to begin one month earlier this autumn.  A small amount of milk has been procured this evening, and it is chilling in the cooler. I think it will compliment the simple summer meal, as the rays of sun reaching through the west windows of the house remind me that autumn is not far off.

End of summer, you always break my heart, leaving much before I am ready for you to go. You leave us with sand shovels in our hands staring up at you with a dazed surprised look on our faces. "Already??",  we whine and stomp! "Noooo."

And you leave us with tiny pink bathing suits haphazardly dangling from clothing lines. You depart, and we are reminded of your exodus with  the detritus of popsicle boxes in the freezer and flip flops and sand encrusted crocs scattered across the porch. You startle us too, for we were certain that you would go on forever and ever, and that we could run, jump, dive, splash, giggle, somersault, sleep, stretch and relax forever.

Would you stay if we threw a tantrum? Would you stay if we promised to wear our sunscreen and didn't complain about the mosquitoes? Why do you have to go?

And, why do you take a little bit of that rare magical land of childhood with you every summer when you leave?  I will never understand you, Summer. Never. I love you, but I will never understand you. 


sheepyhollow said...

Fall is in the air...and I'm not ready to say good-bye to Summer either!

The Happy Peasant said...

We need to invent a month that goes 'in between' July and August...what should we call it?!? (: