Tonight was a genuine Maria’s Farm Country Kitchen night. With Jakob Dylan’s new album playing in the background we dug up baby potatoes from the garden, picked the green beans and tomatoes, and made dinner. The only thing NOT from the garden was wild-caught King Salmon, in season, of course. We all pitched in. Husband and kids cleaned the beans and then we blanched them and froze the extras. Three bags’ worth that will be delicious in soups or as a side dish this winter.
My day was filled with Very Important Business, conference calls with the Clinton Global Initiative team and trying to save the world, but a simple dinner from the garden with my family feels more Important than anything else I did today. I believe in keeping cooking simple most of the time. Olive oil, salt, and butter for the potatoes was all I needed. Kids were happy and cleaned their plates. Me, too. Calories were burned off fairly quickly after dinner with a little dancing around to the music.
I think every family should grow potatoes. I mean, what kid doesn’t love potatoes in some form? And they really are magical to dig up—like digging up treasure. Put them in the soil in the spring, watch the leaves grow and blossom and start to die back, then dig up what you need, when you need it. They keep remarkably fresh underground. Some of them are as tiny as baby toes, and the kids fight over who gets to eat those.
Dinner tonight: Wild-caught salmon broiled with olive oil. Blanched green beans. Boiled potatoes with butter and salt. Fresh-sliced tomatoes with a bit of olive oil, vinegar, and salt, and watermelon for dessert. It’s the first week of August and we all want to savor every moment left of summer.
Finished the night off with a movie that only the British could have made: Greenfingers, with Clive Owen (sigh!) and Helen Mirren (amazing!). I have never seen such a beautiful movie about the power of gardening.