12/15/2009

Oh My Beautiful Jalapeno


The very long and welcome pepper season in the garden is gone and I had to buy a jalapeno at WallyWorld (you may gasp, there aren't many choices for fresh produce nearby). But when I unpacked the groceries last night, there was NO jalapeno to be found anywhere. I looked through the recycling bin of plastic bags. I looked in the 'fridge. In the pepper bin on the counter. There just was not a fresh jalapeno anywhere. Breakfast burrito would be bland, bland, bland. Today, in a hurried walk through the cold, between the house and my office, there it was in the driveway, flat, lately run over by a car wheel, my beautiful jalapeno! Pepper withdraw sets in quickly.

I'm addicted to hot peppers, I admit it. That's why I grew so many varieties this summer. The morning's breakfast just isn't the same without some heat. I rescued this one from the driveway, smashed as it is, and will cook it tomorrow. Gee, I miss summer already.

As we drove through Birmingham a couple of days ago, home of Southern Living magazine and the Grumpy Gardener, we drove by Grumpy's little castle to see what he was up to. As I suspected, the jolly old elf was in high holiday style. He complains about the holidays - Grumpiness is, after all, his middle name - but I figured deep down, he's just a pushover for carols and lollipops and all the hoopla of Christmas. There he was, dressed in his finest red outfit, a fresh-picked amaryllis in hand, about to drag his Christmas tree into his castle. (If you want Grumpy's tips on how to choose a Christmas tree then check this out: How to choose a Christmas tree).

If you have never checked Grumpy's blog, then you don't know about his myth-busting story about poinsettias. As I have long suspected, they're not poison, at all. I've claimed it for years, but now we have it in the expert's own words. Check out this Poinsettias aren't poison!.

One of the things that gives me great pleasure, are you, the followers of this blog. I've visited most of your blogs and websites and I must say, I'm honored at the talented people who stop by here to see what I'm up to. And your blogs lead me to other blogs, and I learn what's new and important and fun. Some of you have fantastic food blogs with great recipes. Some of you "do" art. Lots of gardeners, folks from around the globe and good friends and neighbors. Thank you for checking in from time to time! I'm truly honored.

If you're looking for a great Sparkling Gingershap Cookie recipe, here's the link to Man Food, Steven Litchford's food blog. Now, if I can figure out a way to make stevia sparkle like sugar crystals...



And a question...do any of you Southerners happen to know these berries? As we drove through northern Mississippi and Alabama there were lots of trees in the swampy areas with what looked like flowers. Upon closer inspection, I found they're a 2-lobed, white berry. The berries arrangements on the trees made them look flower-like. I'd like to know the name of the tree if you recognize the white winter berries.

There's still a little life in the garden, even this time of year. Even with 17 degrees F. tonight, the cilantro will survive a bit longer. Tomorrow, the fresh cilantro will be introduced to a smashed, run over jalapeno and some eggs and sausage... Happy gardening and thanks for stopping for a visit.

6 comments:

Chandramouli S said...

Peppers and Chillies! We don't know to cook without these and I wonder how difficult it'd be to eat without these in India! I can understand you desperation. Hope you grow more varieties next summer...

Steven Anthony said...

awwwwww sad little pepper all crushed in the drive way, glad you were able to rescue it.... thanx for linking me ;)

peace

Anonymous said...

When I lived in Houston, Texas it was called a Chinese tallow tree, the tree that has those berry clusters. The leaves of the tree have a heart type shape and the berry clusters are added to Christmas wreaths. It is one of the few tress to change color in the autumn in the Houston area. I gave my Texas gardening book to the new owners of my house so I can not look up the Botanical name for you.-chrisq

Anonymous said...

Your pepper story cracked me up and still does. The wording was perfect.

compost in my shoe said...

Poor little pepper, all alone in the driveway. I want to vist the Grumpy Gardener and stay in his villa. Here is another excellent source to find out the scoop about those poinsettias being safe in the house. Enjoy. http://www.pauleckepoinsettias.com/

Jim Long said...

Chandramouli S, I agree. I find it nearly impossible to cook without peppers. When I was in your country a few years back (New Delhi & the Golden Triangle) I was surprised at how few peppers people ate there. I believe you live in the south part of India? I want to visit your area sometime and experience some real pepper eating!