Saturday, December 4, 2010
The Magic of Summer
We're experiencing extraordinary weather in Queenstown. Last weekend, a friend and client visited in Glenorchy. He is a former farmer, who after taking one look at our cabbage trees, said it's going to be a long, hot, dry summer. They know, the farmers. I'd say they're right as its been pretty damn warm since I returned from holiday in California two weeks ago.
Last weekend I escaped to Glenorchy to find that just about everything we had planted at the section had gone off. My partner said it was a jungle when he arrived. Fortunately for me, he had already done quite a bit of work by the time I arrived. Unfortunately, not so much that I didn't have to do any weeding! But that was alright. I like to get my hand's in the dirt.
But I like to harvest even more ... which is what we were able to do. Harvest rocket, otherwise known as arugala, and parsley. And what does one do with enough rocket and parsley to cater an event? One makes pesto. I love pesto, but was only familiar with the basil and pine nuts variety. Turns out, one can make pesto from all kinds of herbs and nuts. We made rocket & walnut pesto as well as parsley & cashew pesto.
Although the plants are loving the heat, we had been wilting. So there was nothing like putting on the new togs (or swimsuits) and jandals, jumping on the bikes, and riding to a new swimming hole for a quick dip. We did that at least three times last weekend.
The swimming hole only saw me once this weekend. Instead of getting in the water, we got on it, in kayaks, and took along fishing poles. The morning was spent in shorts and tshirts paddling Lake Wakatipu from Glenorchy to Kinloch and back. The day yielded three fish, including my first brown trout! Smoked trout & lake salmon on a bed of home-grown lettuce topped with that homemade pesto from last weekend made for a tasty and healthy Summer lunch.
Unfortunately, just after lunch, those infamous Spring winds arrived, along with my hay fever, to remind me that it isn't quite Summer yet. Bugger! Even the hay fever medication I took isn't helping this time around. Curses to you Spring winds! I showed you by picking and relishing those gorgeous bright red and juicy strawberries from the garden.