Today the NYTimes reported that 1,400 heat records were broken across the country. As a kid this would’ve been the kind of week where we played in the basement and then slept on the porch. My coworker said they used to stick their feet in buckets of cold water and go to the movies (not at the same time). What’s your tactic for sticking out a heat wave?
My rule is NO KITCHEN HEAT. Maybe some flame for the morning coffeepot, but definitely no dinnertime stove or oven. This week we got two bunches of garlic scapes in our CSA, and after googling them to find out what they were, I set about finding a heat-less recipe for them.
Pesto seemed to be the big winner. Most recipes called for blending the scapes with basil, and guess what else came in the CSA? Perfect. My pesto is an amalgamation of recipes from Soup Addict, The Hungry Mouse, and SkinnyTaste.
1 bunch of basil, washed and patted dry
12-15 garlic scapes, flower buds cut off and roughly chopped
1/2 cup of olive oil
1/2 cup pine nuts
1/2 – 1 cup shredded parmigiano cheese
salt to taste
The food processor I used isn’t big or powerful, so this is as smooth as I could get. A better processor could provide a creamier consistency. Just blend the basil and scapes until they’re paste-like, slowly add the oil so it emulsifies, then add the pine nuts and cheese and pulse til smooth. Salt to taste.
As we ate I surveyed the heat’s toll on our balcony garden. There’s bad news and good news. I’ll start with the bad news first: I’ve thrown in the towel on the pallet garden. It’s been a long slow demise, and this heat is the final nail in the coffin. I don’t think I made a good soil choice; the plants have remained stunted and the flowers that do emerge wither and die instead of bear fruit. Also – and I’ve complained about this before – it’s very difficult to water. I about have to lay it flat every time I want to give it a good soak. Goodbye pallet garden 😦
The other containers are better. I harvested several bowls full of peas before replacing the plants with a cucumber start and it’s spreading along the railing. Tomatoes are ripening. Basil is getting taller. The potatoes are still going bonkers, but I’m a little nervous because when I dig around in the box I can’t seem to locate any baby potatoes. Am I right to be worried?