7.14.2011

EASY and FRESH


In the summer I crave arugula and watercress. Recently, a local farmer started selling pots of the stuff, already started, to transplant into our gardens. But it hit me, why not simply snip off stalks before I put the pots in the ground? That way I can beat the rabbits to it--and enjoy my favorite slapped-together sandwich of grainy bread, lots of mayo, and mixed leaves. Sometimes I slice in peaches, too. Delicious.


Much cheaper than buying the cut stuff, even at a farmstand. The pots look pretty sitting in a large flat bowl, the kind you might use for pasta. I keep them well-watered. And when I've grazed down, they're ready to plant, and get a new flush of growth.

21 comments:

pve design said...

yum!

Bruce Barone said...

I love arugula, too. I grow it in my garden.

Cristina said...

what an elegant china dish!

Malerie said...

excellent idea! And I love the photo.

Eulalia (Lali) Benejam Cobb said...

Arugula is my favorite green, but even here in Vermont it doesn't last long--mine bolted last week. How I hated to pull it out! How do you get yours to survive the July heat?

profA said...

How delicious. The addition of a peach is inspired!
I thinned a recent sowing of arugula this morning and will be making it up in tea sandwiches for a Quatorze Juillet fete in the garden later on. Slathered in butter, etc no one will care about the teensy flea beetle holes!

Thank you for the links to Susan Freinkel's book and Plactica. Will look into all during the long car trip to upstate NY this weekend! Merci beaucoup, Mme. Browning.

Linda B.

PS Sputnik arugula from Nichols seeds in Oregon launches into growing mode about 3 days from sowing. Ready for sandwiches in about 2 weeks! A meaty and toothsome variety. BTW have you read about how nutritious arugula is? Who knew?

profA said...

PPS Apropos of wild sandwiches and your seasonal preoccupation with weeds, have you ever put purslane into the filling mix? Mild, a little lemony, again, good tooth. It is also chock a block full of trace elements, omega complex and so many of those health building things that our weedy friends manufacture via their amazing dna. And again, thank you for providing the forum!

david terry said...

CALLING ALL ARUGULA FANS:

Try Edna Lewis & Scott Peacock's arugula, cucumber, and radish salad. It's a refreshing break from the "Chew your Fodder" sort of salad, and wisely follows the maxim "What Grows together Goes Together".

This is a Virtuous Salad in the Lord's Sight, and Worthy To Be Known Of All Men. Forthwith, ye receipt:

Dressing:

2 tbsps sugar (I know, I know....)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 tsp black pper
one bigass spoonfull of good dijon mustard
2 tbsps apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup good olive oil.

The Salad:
3 large, red-meat radishes
4 or so of those icicle radishes
4 large kirby cucumbers (the pickling type)
2 bigass bunches of arugula
2 bunches of watercress


you can blithely vary amounts as you please. It's just a salad, after all, and so "chemistry" isn't exactly a governing imperative.

But it's darned good...spicy radish, sharp & peppery greens, sweet/mustardy dressing.....folks love it at this house. I serve it with cold roast chicken, good bread, and (for the vegetarians) bowls of shaved parmesan and toasted pine nuts. Everyone is ALWAYS happy with this meal. quite frankly, it's on my list of suppers I make when I've forgotten that I'd actually invited folks over.

Advisedly yours as ever,

David Terry ...and am I the only person on this board who has a friend who actually NAMED her dog "Arugula" in the early 90's? She claimed that's what he (a very large and growly alsatian) "said" all the time. He always answered to her, of course, but the rest of us just called him "Argy", which was rather more effective.

karenleslie said...

a simple arugula salad recipe from my fave bakeshop in atlanta: arugula, toasted pistachios, dried apricots, and parmesean - toss with lemon juice and olive oil.

Thea said...

i love the word 'arugula' - it sort of rolls off the tongue like a magic spell. speaking of magic... david, that meal sounds fantastic. i'm stealing it for my next bridge night supper. thanks! t

david terry said...

Dear Miss Thea,

In case you wonder?....your instincts are sharp. That IS a great salad (Edna Lewis knew her business...google her). I forgot to add that, when I'm using that salad as a "meal", I also make chilled leek & potato/e(Spelling? I'd worry about the matter, but I've gathered that this blog is chock-a-block with editors, and I expect someone will take care of this issue for me) soup.

In any case, that salad's great with bread and some sort of chilled, pureed, thick summer-soup (zucchini, chicken stock, and mint, etcetera). Folks on The Atkins Diet are (of course, and as the French say) "completely-fucked" by this menu....but that's the way the cookie crumbles when you swear off carbohydrates and sugars... and still expect other folks to feed you.

Not entirely by-the-way?...and want to come with a menu for THIS group?...I had four folks here for dinner last night. The group included a diabetic,a friend who's on that damn ATKINS DIET, a tiresomely-didactic-vegetarian yoga-lady, and another who's enduring the restrictions of fairly recent gastric-bypass surgery. I thought to myself that it was a very strange group, indeed, when I passed for the most "normal" and least "difficult"
person in the room. I didn't SAY it...but I thought it.

And just to thoroughly commercialize this site (without, I'm afraid, monetizing it in any way that would benefit Ms. Browning's personal coffers)?... I think a lot of you folks would really enjoy/USE Patricia Wells's (whose 2 Provencal cookbooks contain several recipes for arugula salads, by the way) spanking-new cookbook "Salad As a Meal". Reviews are available on Amazon. It's a marvellously USEFUL book. I've already bought five copies for dear friends (all Yankees who've moved down here, so they don't got no good sense about how to run a kitchen in the Summer) who tend to freak out if they're having company and can't face the prospect of cooking yet another pot-roast with mashed potatoes.

Super-Bright Patricia (like Edna Lewis, the lady KNOWS her stuff) is extremely adept at gently suggesting other, better-for-you, and less grindingly-enslaving ways of cooking, eating, and entertaining.

Advisedly yours as ever,

David Terry
www.WhyWaitUntilSomeone'sSpecificallyAskedYou?.org

(also available on an unedifiyingly haphazard basis at:
www.davidterryart.com)

Thea said...

David, are you saying your salad receipt with or w/o the chicken is what you served your diet-restricted eaters? I will tuck that away for future reference. My bridge group will voraciously eat anything someone else will cook for them! But I do have some garden club ladies that have diet restrictions which could challenge a hostess.

david terry said...

Oh, Miss Thea...

My first posting really had little to do with the second posting.

When this house is full of folks with all sorts of specialized needs, I generally do what I learned to do while growing up with (and tending to) three kennels of snapping, yelping, needy, and otherwise tiresome bitches.

I just put different bowls of different types of food in different places and assume they'll all eventually find something to eat that won't kill them. that would be THEIR job once they're here........................................................


At a certain point, one just gives up on this notion of trying to make things better for everyone.

You sound young (which is a perfectly fine thing to be, of course and for the most part). Otherwise, I wouldn't find myself having to tell you this.

Best of Luck,

Uncle David

Tru Dillon said...

I love watercress. thanks for the lovely photos.

SweetRetreat said...

This post has made me simply crave watercress and arugula. Heading out to get some today to make both sandwiches and David's salad while vacationing at the lake.

David Terry, how wish I lived in your town and was your friend, invited over for those wonderful meals. I could be one of your 'older ladies'. And a new puppy too.

david terry said...

P.S.....am I the ONLY one of Ms. Browning's middle-aged blog-fans who read that "EASY & FRESH!" headline and thought...

"Oh,good god...as descriptions go?...that was ME ....sometime back around 1984 or so...and somewhere around two very specific streets encompassing the Limelight and CBGB's....

Resignedly yours as ever,


David Charles Corwyth Terry (and I've just given up yet another of my "secrets" for the sake of of Our Ms. Browning's blog)

Violet Cadburry said...

DCCT - your "secret" has been out for a long time. I am sure you still are somewhat easy, but fresh may be another matter. I was disappointed that you did not offer up more literary references about arugula, especially the well known "ARG ULUA" mention in works of Preposterous, the little known, at the time of his life, early church historian in olde England. He clearly recounts how the locals would glare at each other acrosst the pub tables and challenge each other with gutteral alcholic exclamations: "ARG ULUA goin buy the new round!" Alas, those patrons with limited knowledge of gutteral English and clearly frightened, produced the sprigs of fresh arugula they had bought at the local farmers market, and were promptly rewarded with slaps and kicks about their own persons. Don't know how you forgot to mention this as it is not a mere footnote in the history of arugula and bar jargon.
Sincerely,
Violet

Judith Ross said...

AND, making the David Terry radish/arugula salad to accompany tonight's dinner.

Judith Ross said...

AND, those sandwiches sound like they'd be even more excellent when made with homemade mayonnaise, and why not, homemade bread as well, though who wants to bake in this heat.

Amy Clark said...

My mum and her 5 sisters and brother lived in Ohio on a property shared with Alsatian grandparents. They truly lived the "slow life". Fresh chickens, raw milk and she recently told me (she's 85) that her summer favorite was: Watercress sandwiches! How healthy, natural and for her straight from the earth. An aunt still lives in the grandparents house thought I think the "slow life" is gone now.

btw-NEVER read a blog until I read the book and now, it's a must--has transformed this mid-life photographer!

My Dog-Eared Pages said...

These two greens are my favorite things... I LOVE the idea of adding slices of peach to the grainy bread sandwich! Yum. ;)