How can it be? I am endlessly attracted to the glorious colours of winter salads, picked chilled by rain while the clouds sit on the hills around my home, the little creek tinkles its way through my garden and my jumper and hair are speckled with fine mist as I forage.
Deep crimson chicory is dotted about in my self-sown vegetable garden, next to fine, lime-green, frilly mustard. Gathered haphazardly into my picking basket, along with chervil, French sorrel, marigold petals, spring onions, new red Russian kale leaves, miners’ lettuce, mizuna, young bok choy and some leaves of the Japanese turnip, joy erupts on my face! The collecting continues for a while longer and I don’t want to go back inside until, eventually, the rain gets too heavy for my woollen jumper to repel.
Earlier in the day I made some fresh pesto, but not using basil. Rather, I picked an armful of parsley and chervil and blended them with parmesan, Johnston almonds, pepitas, lime juice and garlic.
Serve all this with a piece of my home made quince paste and a neighbour’s goats’ cheese and dinner is a photo on a tray. Everything from my garden or the community garden or a neighbour, except the parmesan cheese, crackers, pepitas and almonds, but at least these are Australian.
How can anything be more beautiful?