Thursday, August 1, 2013

Okra, Beans, Tomatoes, and Aunt Berlie

Finally got around to cutting the okra and picking the beans! 



Not the prettiest beans I've ever seen, but snapped and cooked, really good!  Poppy loves fried okra, so do I, but...the fat!!!  So, I fried a frying pan full for Poppy and oven roasted several small pods for me!!!  With a little thought, extra effort (and one more dirty pan to wash) those of us wanting to lose a pound or two don't have to do without.  The roasted okra was really tasty...I need to throw several vegetables onto the roasting pan...Tossing vegetables in a bowl with just one tablespoon of olive oil, salt, and pepper is sufficient for roasting.

The tomatoes are plentiful and good this summer.  What a treat to have home grown tomatoes!!!  Those little hard, pale, tomatoes we buy all winter in the grocery stores, can't even compare!!!  Mowing up around the garden fence yesterday, I could not resist picking a red tomato and eating it on the spot.  Ah, that reminds me...cousins of mine used to love, as they called it, "mater biscuits"!!!  A cold left-over from breakfast biscuit, split in half, spread with mayonnaise, topped with a slice of red juicy tomato right out of the garden.  If the garden is a "right good walk" from the house, it's wise to carry a cold biscuit with you!!!  Never know what you might find to put in that biscuit!!!




Is this picture a touch blurry or is my eyes?? :) Summer is passing quickly...we need to enjoy these vegetables while we have them.  

As long as we have lived here in the country I've wanted a fig tree.  One had just started to grow when a Vole ate off the roots.  The fig tree just fell over when I touched it.  I was able to root one limb from that fig and plant it in a different spot.  Since cutting some of the trees in the yard, to let in more sun, this fig has started growing and even has a few small figs.  The beauty berry bush growing in front of the fig...volunteered and came up.  It needs to be moved this fall...



Back in the 1950's (50's again!!)  Aunt Berlie had an enormous fig tree in her yard...between two old outbuildings.  It would be covered in big sweet figs.  Had to be careful walking around barefoot under that fig tree.  Some of the big fat ripe figs would fall to the ground and Yellow Jackets loved the sweetness too...their sting hurts terribly bad, and keeps on hurting.  Oh, I could write a book about Aunt Berlie but I don't have time!  Aunt Berlie lived alone in a big old house and I loved spending time with her.  Aunt Berlie loved having me with her too.  Her only child, a daughter, was away at college.  Aunt Berlie had a small fenced-in garden with a little gate...that's why I now love a little fenced-in garden with a gate.  Aunt Berlie would say to me, "come on, lets go cut us a little toothbrush".  She knew what kind of tree to cut the twig from...a small straight twig, the end frayed by chewing it, I suppose.  It was used to swish around in your mouth.  Aunt Berlie secretly enjoyed a tiny bit of snuff.  That's what the toothbrush was for.  Occasionally, I would have a little cocoa and sugar mixed and in my very own little snuff can too.  

There was an attic in Aunt Berlie's house.  Occasionally, we would go up in the attic.  There were lots of old Sears Roebuck catalogs stored there and I could pick out one.  We called it "cutting out of the catalog"!! :)  Paper dolls, clothes, furniture, dishes, anything and everything needed to set up a paper doll house.  There was also a child's white rocking chair and a very large beautiful rag doll that belonged to Virginia, Aunt Berlie's daughter.  I loved to sit in that chair and hold the doll.  Aunt Berlie and I would sit up late, some nights til almost 11:00 putting together a puzzle.  Getting to bed late, I would crawl to the far side of the big iron bed and then Aunt Berlie would get in beside me.  She then reached for the string that was tied to the small chain hanging from the light bulb high over head...that long string was then tied to the bed post.  "good night"!!!

I've got to get busy...watch Poppy walk in and here I sit...

Love,
Henny Penny

7 comments:

  1. Sweet story about Aunt Berlie, Henny. She must have loved you so much! Your garden is so bountiful, I am just so envious...but that is a good okra recipe. I confess I love me some cornbreaded pan fried "okrie" as my granny said.
    Don't work too hard, enjoy the days...My friend Lisa has a fig tree, and here they have to be sheltered with quilts or something, covered in winter, but she has big figs this year,too. XOXO Terry

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    1. Hey Terry,

      "Okrie"!! Lots of mama's people used to say that. You tickle me...I feel like we should be kin. I do coat the okrie in cornmeal and fry it in a cast iron pan.

      Love,
      Henny

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  2. Loved the Aunt Bertie story. Such good memories.
    About fig trees; we had them once at some houses we lived in growing up. And there is one in the yard at my previous home around the corner where we live now. A friend lives there, and was telling me how many figs they are picking, and the wasps do have a fine taste for them! I like them now that I am older, but didn't like the seeds inside when a child. In my own yard, we have five trees of "fig", Ficus Benjamina, Ficus Nitia, plus Ficus vines on the fence. And right now the Ficus Benjaminas are dropping hundreds of tiny fruits all over the patio, and into the pool! A big crunchy mess!, but the fruits are mostly dry. We also have to watch for the invasive roots..not good for plumbing! Your garden is giving you some lovely bounty! I picked a tiny handful of beans today, enough to garnish a salad! But I know I don't work as hard as you do...so I don't get the same rewards! You should receive a package from me tomorrow, and I hope you like it.
    Fondly
    Pam

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    1. Dear Pam,

      Thank you. Do all the trees you mentioned bear fruit you can eat? Seems like a had a Ficus tree in a pot once in an apartment. Would that be the same? You must have a beautiful place!!! Thank you for my special package!!!

      Love,
      Henny

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    2. My ficus trees are more like your ornamental ficus in a pot, in fact I forgot about the two we have in big pots! The fruits are the size of a marble, and not good to eat. At least they are pretty dry when they fall. On our walls the fruits look more like figs, but I don't think they are very edible, unless you are a possum. I'll have to send some photos by email.
      Have a lovely day,
      Pam

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  3. I love the way you describe things - you have a way with words no doubt ! you transport me to that place !
    Okra is not really all that popular here in UK, it can be bought in most supermarkets, but it is only allocated a teeny tiny space, and you have to hunt it out ! I'm ashamed to say I haven't tried it yet, because of the price !, perhaps I will grow some next season but I have a big move on the way soon, can it be grown in pots ? that way I can take all my produce with me ??

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  4. Dear Wean,

    Thank you for the nice comment. Okra is a strange vegetable!!! I think there are lots of people who don't like it. I would think you could grow okra in a pot. It has a pretty bloom even if you didn't get any okra. Good luck on your move...that truly is a job!

    Love,
    Henny

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